My Ridiculously Simple Meal Plan Strategy

Decision making can be one of the hardest parts of meal planning. Here is one ridiculously simple meal plan strategy to eliminate the guesswork!

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Have you ever had it up to here? (Visualize my arm being raised as high as possible over my head).  That’s usually when I end up getting a call from one of my clients. It’s the tipping point where they’ve had enough, just can’t take it anymore and want it fixed already.  Confession, I have those moments too!

I am a professional organizer, everything in my home must be so perfect right?  Let’s just say, everyone has a little hot mess happening somewhere in their life and nothing is perfect.  The cobbler doesn’t wear shoes remember? Here is one of many examples from my own home that sparked the very reason of this post.

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The Struggle

Recently, my husband and I were trying to figure out what we were going to have for dinner.  He was wonderful and going to to go to the grocery store for me (love that he does that when he knows I don’t wanna) so we had to decide the plan for the week.  The issue?  

You see, I really don’t like the whole process of meal planning.  Don’t like it. Actually, I’d rather go to the dentist then come up with dinner ideas and cook every night.  Give me something simple and quick and I’m good. My husband on the other hand, loves a full rounded meal every night.  He travels so the task lands on me. Soooo, we have this conversation ALL THE TIME. Every week, “What are we having for dinner?”,  “What do I have to choose from?”, “I need a list of stuff we make and like in order to decide.”   

In the kitchen we stood with my piles of recipes (hot mess station number 2) and the feelings high, neither of us knew what to get or had an opinion otherwise.  

In telling you this story, it seems simple enough and silly that we do this to ourselves all the time.  I know what needs to be done and how to fix the problem after all. Since I don’t like it though, I stay clear, keep it on the “will do someday” list and continue to suffer.  Just as a lot of us do with different areas of our home. Can you relate?

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A long time ago, we had a list of everything we made on a regular basis that everyone liked and my husband loved it.  “Where’s the list, why don’t we use it anymore?” (Can you see my shoulders shrugging as he asks?)  

We finally came up with a plan for the week and he was on his way to the store. Standing there looking at the disaster that is my recipe cabinet in the kitchen, I immediately went upstairs and created a document to stop the madness. “Our Favorite Meals” Checklist was born.

The Checklist

Decision making (the part I really dislike about the meal planning process) can be one of the hardest parts of meal planning so my checklist is perfect!  It is my ridiculously simple meal plan strategy to eliminate the guesswork!  You can check it out here.

Do you have a hard time deciding what to make for dinner every night?  Eliminate the guessing game and create a rotation of your favorites. This handy (made from necessity) checklist will ease up all that decision making.

Here’s how it works.  

Print out your checklist.  Simply write down a meal every time your family loves it, or fill in your faves all at once.  Start at the top and work your way down checking a meal off each time you make it. What’s for dinner this week?  The next thing on the list! No more guessing. Super simple, right?!

Print your checklist again when boxes are full OR, for repeat use, laminate or put in a glass frame and use a dry erase marker.  A perfect companion for meal planning. (Maybe I should try the apron. Will that make me like the process more?)


Some Helpful Tips:

1. Keep your list on a clipboard or a clip on the refrigerator for easy access.

2. If you have printed recipes, clip them together with the list that week.

3. Keep all of your fave recipes in one location so you know right where to go when you need them.

So there you have it. 

My ridiculously simple meal plan strategy!  Give it a try and let me know how it works. Come visit me on Facebook or Instagram and tell me all about it!

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I'm Melynda, a professional organizer who loves helping busy women and families eliminate their clutter and calm the chaos in their homes. You want to get organized? Let’s do the thing!

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