This weekend Brenda and I had the honor of spending some time with military wives and soldiers who have been blessed with child at A Star Spangled Baby Shower hosted by https://www.facebook.com/OHRockyMountains.
Brenda and I both have been military wives and know the sacrifice of these wonderful women. We thank them for their family’s service and sacrifice in defending our freedoms. We thank you. I huge thanks to Nina and her staff of volunteers who made this fun pampering event happen.
Brenda and I talked a bit about some money-saving ideas/tips. One of the things we shared was regarding making a meal plan each month. This simply put is making a list of the meals you would like to make for the week, every two weeks or monthly, whatever works best for your family. I did our family’s while on a drive from our community to another one weekend. Next I got through and list the ingredients I will need to make these meals. Once that is completed, I cross off any ingredients I already have stocked in the kitchen and freezers. Lastly I either make a neater list of what is needed at the grocery stores or I can use my crossed out list of needed ingredients. I personally like to make a new list and categorize them by the store I will purchase them at based on the best value I can get.
We already have the supplies for each meal in-house and can pull whatever is need prior to the day it is prepared. We have personally learned the value of doubling or tripling a meal our family enjoys. We do with everything from meatloaf and Salisbury steaks to pasta sauces, chicken pot pies to various casseroles. With the extras, place in serving size containers or zip lock backs and throw in the freezer. This is so nice in the weeks to come. For every time this is done we have two extra meals already made and we can just continue to rotate them through over the next few weeks.
We have learned meal planning saves us time, at the grocery store but also at home because we already have prepped so much of our ingredients.
We definitely save money since we are making fewer trips to the grocery store and therefore not buying as much. Grocers want in there their stores as often as possible. Most of us do not go in and pick up just that loaf of bread or the gallon of milk we need, we usually add extra items to our cart.
The lack of stress is wonderful. It is so nice to know we have everything we need in-house for whatever we decided to have that night. If you do some freezer meals or preparatory pieces it is great to be able to pull that and defrost in the fridge and them whip up in a few minutes when it is dinner time.
Meal planning for us has also become a way to combat spending money at the last-minute with eating out or purchasing ready-made meals at the last moment when a day has been extremely busy or stressful. It has also been a saving grace when Mom goes down sick or has to be out-of-town.
Check out http://www.operationhomefront/rockmountains.net as well. They are doing some awesome work with our military families. Consider joining them as a volunteer. You will be blessed by it.
Have a wonderful week,