I hate New Year's Resolutions. I'm not going to lose 20 lbs., become fluent in Italian, or cure the common cold in a year, and a resolution just makes me feel guilty 'round March when I haven't even thought about starting. A few years ago, I started making New Year's Resolutions I Kind of Want to Keep. ©
One year I decided to eat more salads. (I like salad. I should eat it more. And once or twice counts as more.)
Another year, eat more fish. (Same reasons. I don't often cook fish, but started ordering it at restaurants. Then I started making broiled salmon at home with a yogurt-dill-lemon sauce. It's yummy.)
Yet another, wear more skirts. And another? Call my family and friends more.
This year I wanted it to be good. I kept thinking. What do I need to get better at, that's not too much pressure and will trigger a bout of migraines or insomnia? Something I will enjoy, but have to do anyway?
And I got it.
I decided to start planning my family's meals, rather than buying a bunch of random crap at the grocery store and hoping it fits together. I got tired of staring at my over-stuffed pantry and not having any idea of what to make. And I got tired of eating the same convenience stuff over and over again because, due to the witching hour from 5-7 (aka Rowan's FREAK OUT time), I was to tired to think.
I used to be a from-scratch cook, then I had a baby. And got realistic. Yeah, spending 90 minutes leisurely making dinner while sipping a glass of wine and listening to jazz? Doesn't happen often anymore. Plus, living in a small home makes you really question the use of space, and storing food in case of a 3-week blizzard may have been practical in North Dakota where we grew up, but it's not here (and not likely, anyway.) Things have to change around here.
So I started. I'm on week 2, and so far so good. In fact, it's a lot easier than I thought. I found I stress out less, spend less money, go shopping less, and we eat healthier because there's less, "Oh honey, you had a rough day. I'll just take you out for dinner," thus eating a much higher-calorie meal and paying 5 times as much for it. I actually kind of like it (though I'm not going to turn down the occasional meal out. I'm not crazy.)
So though it's not Monday, I'm going to join in. (Thanks to commenter Sharon for showing me that I'm not the only one with this resolution.) And maybe I'll even keep it up.
This is what we've been eating.
Monday: Spaghetti and Meatballs, salad.
Tuesday: Chicken Fajitas (tortillas, seasoned chicken, red and green peppers, onions, sour cream and salsa), black beans cooked with a little salsa and fajita seasoning.
Wednesday: Norsk Meatballs (I made a huge batch and froze before Xmas), potatoes and gravy, salad. I was going to do corn or beans, but we have leftover lettuce so I think salad will do. ***Note: I got inspired in the afternoon and made jello. Whoopie! But it was good. Apricot jello, made with 1/2 pear juice, and peaches and raspberries. In wine glasses so it's Super-fancy.
Thursday: Dr. B has a meeting, so I'll eat leftovers or something.
Friday: Huevos Rancheros casserole (black bean, onion, green pepper, red pepper and cheese, veggies saved from the Fajita night), salad.
Saturday: (lunch) Leftover egg bake, (supper) Hamburgers and fries (homemade, though. Well, at least baked out of a bag.)
OK, that's as far as I got. I was planning Sunday-Sunday, so may have to remedy that to participate in this thing.
Sunday: (lunch) tomato and roasted red pepper soup (Pacific), terrine de canard, bread, cornichons, fromage avec champignons. (supper) Sloppy Joes, Sun Chips, pickles, carrot sticks.
Monday: Beef Soft Tacos, spanish-ish rice (Tío Ben's).
Tuesday: Moroccan Chicken Stew, couscous. (Needed more cayenne, cumin and raisins. Or maybe garlic? Good, but needed a little more zip for our palates.)
Wednesday: Dr. B had a meeting so I ate leftovers.
Thursday: Veggie Lasagne, salad. (frozen from Wegman's--don't think I'm too ambitious.)
Friday: Chicken and Prosciutto Tortelloni with caramelized onions and sour cream, salad.
Saturday: we went out to the Elk Creek Café with Seth and Erin. Very good beer. Food was good, too, but they ran out of most everything (they're a lot busier than I think they expected) so I am anxious to try something I planned to order.
That's it. So, if you're a part of this, I'd love to hear from you! Maybe it'll give me some ideas. I'm always on the lookout for easy, good, and fast recipes!