Menu goals and a menu plan

Good sized squirrel in our tree

Big squirrel!

Last Friday morning, the first day of January, I was on the porch when I noticed something in one of our trees. The sun was shining brightly and right in my face. That, coupled with poor vision, had me puzzled as to whether it was a small cat or a big squirrel so I used my phone to take a picture and zoom in on the animal in question to determine which it was. As soon as I’d taken this squirrel’s picture she ran down the tree and came up to me on the porch! It was the funniest thing, though, I will admit to quickly stomping my foot on the porch to run her off.

She spent most of the morning running all over the front yard, digging in the snow, checking for bird seeds under the bird feeder and, routinely, coming up to me on the porch. I think she was hungry and searching for food. Usually we have corn cobs in a feeder for the squirrels but we’re out at the moment. Made me feel bad for her but it got me thinking about how unprepared I’ve been for those times when I needed to eat lately.

Hence, Menu Plan Mondays!

December was probably the worst month of the entire year in terms of menu planning and what I ate. What WE ate as a family, even. There were times I didn’t have anything planned but there were also quite a few times where I ignored my menu plan and ordered out. Or fixed hot dogs or the like. My goals in menu planning are simple:

  • Save time by being prepared (knowing what you’re going to fix it often half the battle!)
  • Save money by not ordering out (I feed 7-8 people, it gets costly to eat out)
  • Save money by not over buying at the grocery store (going with a list of exactly what you need and determination to stick to the list can cut out a ton of impulse buying)
  • Account for dietary needs

If I plan well I’m not hanging out in front of the fridge with the doors open while I, again, look disdainfully at leftovers before deciding to send someone to Casey’s for a slice of pizza. I didn’t do so good with menu planning in December and I’m feeling it in more ways than one. Time to get back on track, I’d say! Also time to buy more corn cobs.

Here’s what my menu plan for this week’s dinners looks like:

Monday– Meatloaf meatballs with steamed broccoli and cauliflower

Tuesday– Polish sausage, pumpkin and spinach soup (adapted from I breath I’m Hungry)

Wednesday– Beef tips with broccoli slaw

Thursday– Spaghetti squash spaghetti with a side salad

FridayChicken breasts in creamy green onion sauce with greens and a vinaigrette

Saturday- Pulled beef over baby spinach with a vinaigrette

SundayChili over steamed broccoli


Most of the sides are greens of some sort or broccoli because I know I can serve these and not bust the keto-bank for Mike, Bear and Britt. I can make all of this gluten-free and with the exception of the pulled beef (converting a buffalo chicken recipe to use a sirloin roast), these are dishes we enjoy. They’re also mostly from what I have on hand already in an attempt to lower the grocery bill. I have a bag of oranges that needs to be eaten so I plan to serve wedges each night until they’re gone. Up to the keto folks as to whether they can indulge or not.

What are you eating this week? Don’t think that question is just for the sake of being polite or trying to engage … I absolutely LOVE seeing what others eat for dinner. I wish we had an app that would allow you to put in what you’re eating and then allow you to browse an interactive map to see what others here and there are eating. I could completely geek-out and lose track of time looking to see what people across the globe are eating!




Posted on January 4, 2016, in Blog, Menu Plan and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

I love reading your comments. Thanks!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s