Yesterday I spent probably way too much time researching about how to save money and make better meals for my family at the same time. Then I went shopping for two hours at three different stores. I did feel good about the fact that I didn't buy any meat (except for lunch meat) and only one bag of cereal, and that I went to different stores because I had researched where different items were cheaper. Go me!
The only thing I did spend a lot on was milk products, those SO add up. But hopefully my next shopping trip will be better.
The big thing that really helped this week was coming up with a theme for each day. I saw several different bloggers suggest this. For so many years now, I thought, having every Friday be pizza night would drive me crazy, because what if I don't want pizza then? But as I read, several people kept mentioning that it really helped them as they planned their weekly menu because then they weren't stressed trying to figure out what to plan each night, they already had a guideline. Plus, since they weren't so stressed, they were able to make more diverse meals within that "theme," which was way more fun for them. So I am really hoping that will work for me.
It is also really nice because instead of feeling like I have no plan and try to think of things for hours, I have a base to go from, but I don't feel like super controlled like someone is writing the menu for me. Because my husband doesn't like pork, and none of us like seafood in any food (minus tuna), so a fish night, so would not work for us.
So this is how it is going to shake down for our family:
Monday: Pizza Night
Tuesday: Soup and/or sandwich
Thursday: Crock pot
Saturday: leftovers or eat out (this is always our busy day with different plans)
Sunday: Cassarole or roast in winter, Grill in the summer
I am really excited to take this for a spin. After freaking out about what to feed my family after the fiasco of overspending last month and still feeling like we were starving, I spent like 5 hours researching and trying to find meals that my kids would actually eat. Once I decided to try the theme nights, it took me half an hour and that includes writing out the grocery list. That alone is worth it.
So for this week we have some awesome meals to look forward to that I actually am excited to cook (that NEVER happens for me). We splurged and had hoagies tonight, that one is expensive with the lunch meat and all the cheese and bread. But that is my hubby's favorite meal and it was our end of summer hurrah. Next week I will let you know any winners and keep you updated on the spending better process. Until then...