I think this lil reminder is SO CRUCIAL to success - whether it's in business, finances, getting fit, running a home or even COOKING!!! Being prepared saves you time, angst and MONEY!! (who doesn't like to save money?!?!).
Several years ago I found a framed "painting" (really just a picture on a slab of particle board) at a flea market...the frame was GORGEOUS...it was the end of the day at the end of the weekend and I scored said framed "art" for $1.00 (sorry I don't have a before - I remember being so ANXIOUS to just get started on my treasure).
I use a pretty permanent (it will come off with some elbow grease and a damp cloth) chalk marker that I got a Target in the dolla spot a few years ago....drew out a grid with the days of the week, added an Italian saying at the bottom : "Tutti a tavola a mangiare!" which translates to "EVERYONE to the table to eat!". There is nothing warmer than sharing a meal, breaking bread and having a full table!
In theory each week I will plan out my menu based on the on-hand ingredients OR what may be on sale (I am a TOTAL saver and CHASE good deals)
Sun - Chicken w/Brown rice and veggies
Mon - Leftovers: Lasagna, Ham, Pizza
(when cooking it's inevitable to have leftovers...SO why not make a night of it....we affectionately refer to it as "catchers can" night...everyone gets what they want - no cooking for me AND no waste!).
Tues - Pulled Pork Tacos
Wed - Parmesan Spinach Gnocchi
Thurs - Cheeseburgers, Tossed Salad and Fries
Fri - Flat Breads and Spinach Salad
Sat - Breakfast for Dinner - Chocolate Chip Pancakes
Below you will see I did my grocery shopping based on a list I made (from the missing items I needed from my weekly meal plan). Not only did I got with a list BUT I wanted to find the BEST prices. Target's meat selection has always been stellar AND I know I can usually get some kinda meat on the daily sales special...for example - the ground sirloin you see retails for $7.99/package - I paid $3.99 (Target's weekly ad had the meat priced at $6.99/package AND I picked the $3.00-off today packs) SO I got 96% lean ground sirloin for $3.99/package - STEAL!!!
The spinach salad is in my menu 2 days AND goes in the gnocchi SO buying the $1.00 OFF bags was a no brainer BECAUSE I KNEW I'd be using it this week (no matter how good a deal is IF it's something you aren't going to use it's NOT A DEAL).
The package of Chicken Breasts was $5.00 OFF (retailing for $9.99 I paid $5.99 and will get at least 2 meals from that package). The pasta's were on sale for $1.45 and I had a .55 coupon off 2...so I paid $2.35 for two boxes ($1.17 each) for Barilla pasta (which is my pasta of choice). One box is for a meal on next weeks menu and you can never go wrong having pasta on hand!
While checking out my pantry/freezer staples I got a jump on next weeks menu - jotted it down on a post it and stuck it to the back of the menu board so I am ready for next week!
What are YOUR meal planning tips?