Thank you so much for all your kind comments yesterday, I really do appreciate it. I am not sure how I managed to suck so many amazingly kind people into reading my blog, but I am grateful. Thanks for the encouragement!
****Those of that love cooking or have high standards for food should stop reading right now*****
Magazines and design blogs are not the real everyday life that goes on here. Everyday life around here is beautifully chaotic and non-stop. There are a lot of things I really enjoy. Creating, playing, blogging….cooking I don’t enjoy so much. Maybe I’d enjoy it more if three little boys liked variety and interesting foods. Probably not. The thing about cooking for me is it is such a temporary enjoyment. I could craft for 15 minutes and enjoy the product for a year. I could cook for 3o minutes and enjoy it for 10….even then I don’t really enjoy it because I am getting up and down more than I am actually eating.
How do I get a lot done in a day…I don’t cook everyday. We eat dinner as a family every night, but very rarely am I in the kitchen preparing it that day. A few of my friends and I have started cooking once a month. It is wonderful! We each pick 4 recipes and prepare them to go in the freezer. Then we trade. So we each end up with about 16 different meals and a few sides that are all great in the freezer. In the evenings I just have to pull something out of the freezer, let it thaw overnight and throw it in the oven or crockpot the next day. It makes my afternoons and evenings so much smoother and the amount of money we save is crazy.
There are all kinds of Once a Month cooking websites, recipes, tools online. You can get menus and schedules and be very Type A about it. For my friends, we have similar sized families, and kids that are the same ages…so our recipe choices and sizes are the same. We just pick stuff that will freeze well, make it and pick a week to trade. It makes me happy.
I usually pick one day to do my shopping and cooking. This month I finished all 16 meals (4 recipes x 4) in about 2.5 hours….and after I trade with friends I will have 16 great meals and will have saved a ton of money.
When we began doing this (about a year ago) we did make the investment in a deep freeze. I figure with 4 kids (3 of which are boys) a deep freeze will get a good amount of use. I saw an Oprah episode once where a mom taught her sons (I think there were 3 of them) the basics of cooking. The boys loved it and it became a competition. The mom never cooked and the boys competed each night to see who could create the best meals. That is the smartest mom ever….I will follow her lead one of these days!