Monday, September 20, 2010

Menu Plan Monday-- September 20

This week D goes back to tutoring a few days a week. It makes my life a little bit harder in the evenings since I have to juggle 4 kids getting homework done, all the papers signed, and dinner on the table at a decent hour. I really don't like not having D eating dinner at the table with us. There is a big push to get families back to eating dinner together as there are many benefits, especially as kids get older.

Eating dinner together has always been something we've done. Not doing it feels wrong. I know only D will be missing and I am perfectly fine to sit and eat with the kids, but there is still this feeling of our family not being completely there. It's not the same without him.

Sadly, I'm not able to juggle everything and we usually end up eating dinner late on the nights he tutors...usually about 6:30. Ok, that doesn't sound too late but when the little kids go to bed at 7:30 it doesn't leave much time for after dinner fun. Things feel very rushed and a rushed mama means a cranky mama.

In order to help things not be so rushed at dinner, I have to be organized. And, well...I'm not. But, that's my goal for the next few weeks: Get in to the habit of having dinner organized! It goes beyond just having the menu planned out. It goes to me actually starting dinner early enough. I'm already having to use the crockpot on Wednesday nights because of activity night. But I also don't want use it every night.

Maybe a dissection of our afternoon schedule is in order?

330: Pick up The Boy and Leelee
4:00-4:20 Pick up Little B and Danger Girl
4:20-4:40 Supervise Chores/afternoon snack (don't even get me started! the kids are starved and will whine and complain and will DIEEEEE before dinner. Some days, I feel like letting them!)
4:40 Homework time begins and I start trying to get dinner together.

Between all the interruptions, I usually don't get dinner actually started til 5 or 530. And unless I'm doing a 30-minute meal, dinner ends up pretty late.

I would love it anyone had suggestions for me!

Meanwhile, here's the meal plan for the week.

Sunday--Grilled Pork Tenderloin
Monday--Ham & scalloped potatoes
Tuesday-- leftovers
Wednesday--Pulled Pork we didn't get to last week
Thursday-- Tostada Goop


  1. I love "tostada goop" lol.

    Maybe do crock pot meals or those 30 minute meals you mention on the nights he tutors. I have to work one evening a week on average and try to plan meals that can be done early enough that we can eat before I need to leave (even if it's just a quick plate for me and get more later), and the crock pot or something simple like spaghetti or chili cheese dogs helps a lot for those nights. Ordering delivery or grabbing take out isn't an option for us, and it sounds like for you, so this is the only way I can get it done on those nights.

  2. Besides the crockpot, I have one tried and true method - prep ahead. So on Mondays and Wednesdays I actually make dinner the night before so all I have to do when I get home on Tuesday and Thursday is heat it up. On Wednesdays, I usually make a casserole in the morning that I can pop in oven as soon as I get home that afternoon.

  3. I use the crockpot Mon - Thurs (our busiest days). I make sure to prep anything I can ahead of time, too. We eat fairly simple meals those days, and I try to save the more time consuming dinners for the weekend.
    I have to say, I am very intrigued by the "tostada goop"..must try it!

  4. I feel your pain. I usually feel like I've run a marathon by the time the kids are finally in bed. And that's on the days Michael is actually home!

    I always make sure I know what I'm going to cook and that I have the ingredients before the kids even get home. I've gone so far as to set out the ingredients and pots and pans or whatever on the counter because it's easy to get distracted.

    Good luck! You're getting dinner done earlier than I do.


Thanks and have a great day!