Meal Plan Monday – 6.29.09

This is a very exciting day for me! I made my very first weekly meal plan ever. This is something that I have wanted to do for a long time, but for a variety of reasons I just never pulled it together. But after being introduced to Southern Savers and learning a lot about couponing at my local stores, I was anxious to get started on this new endeavor.

Initially, I thought I would set a grocery budget and work from there. But I decided to start with a meal plan & use coupons instead because I felt until I had mastered meal planning a budget wasn’t going to help.

To begin, I asked each of my 4 children what they like to eat. I started this list several months ago and found today that they had added some new foods in that time…which helps me greatly in the meal planning process. My goal over the past few weeks was to get out of my bad habit of capitulating to all the picky eaters. I made dinners and everyone was expected to eat…or go to bed hungry…which is what happened to one child this past week. I do use dessert as a motivator and it has encouraged picky eaters to try that which they believe will kill them.

So here is our meal plan for the week beginning 6.29.09:

Monday
B: Pancakes ($.15), Special K (.75)
L: Mac n Cheese ($2.84), Chicken
D: Tortellini ($3.49), home-made breadsticks

Tuesday
B: Pancakes ($.15), Special K (.75)
L: Mozzarella sticks ($3.85), Broccoli Rice
D: Enchiladas (leftover frozen for dh & me), Quesadillas (for kids)($1.69), Mexican Rice ($1.49), Corn bread

Wednesday
B: Pancakes ($.15), Special K (.75)
L: Mac n Cheese $2.84), Salami sandwich ($.30)
D: Dh has fish to eat, I have a meeting so I will just have a salad, kids will have chicken & fries ($6.78 — I know my dh will cook both bags & scarf some…but they will have some leftovers)

Thursday
B: Pancakes ($.15), Special K (.75)
L: Mozzarella sticks ($3.85), Broccoli Rice
D: Parma Rosa (frozen from last week since I cook as if for an army), home-made bread

Friday
B: Pancakes ($.15), Special K (.75)
L: Mac N Cheese $2.84), Salami sandwich ($.30)
D: Pizza (frozen) ($10.58 – not really a deal until you consider we easily spend $40 on ordering pizza)

Saturday
B: Pancakes ($.15), Special K (.75)
L: leftovers
D: leftovers

SundayB: Pancakes ($.15), Special K (.75)
L: Mexican Freestyle – chips ($2), salsa ($1.20), cheese, meat ($2.00), rice ($1.49)
D: Fettuccine Alfredo (aka Rapuccino Alfreddy- 5yos favorite meal), home-made bread

Yes, our breakfasts are very routine. The pancakes are varied, mostly plain, some blueberry, I made all of them myself of Saturday night. Oldest son usually has Special K or toast for breakfast. And I have a guilty pleasure for breakfast, premade Starbucks Frappaccino. Aside from that, I don’t generally eat breakfast.

Lunch doesn’t vary a whole lot either. Oldest son will not eat Mac n Cheese, so he eats chicken or salami or leftovers.

If there is no price, that’s because I already have that item or what I need to make that item in my pantry. Those prices do not represent everything I bought because the meal plan doesn’t represent everything either…like salad or drinks or dessert (which will be Breyer’s ice cream as it was BOGO plus I had a coupon so I got 2 for a grand total of $3.99) and other guilty pleasures….but this is where it all starts.

I can’t tell you how good it feels to have done this. And I can’t wait to see how we get thru the week with fewer meal hassles, less waste, no figuring out dinner at 5:30, fewer trips to the store, reduced unplanned spending, etc.

I’m so excited to finally be able to join the other menu planners linked up at I’m An Organizing Junkie. It’s all those wonderful people who put together menu after menu who have inspired me. Their efforts & know-how provided the encouragement, resources, templates, and examples to help move me in a positive direction and take on meal planning for my family!

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