Monday, 22 December 2014

The Menu Plan Went Out The Window

The last few weeks have been very unpredictable in our home.  We've had the bathroom renovations come to an end and the mess to clean up afterwards including a complete dust of the house.  Darren had a church communtiy day to organise with hampers and toys to give away.  Our church cafe opened and Darren was heavily involved in the set up. .Both Darren and I have been unwell over three weeks.

With me losing my voice it took two attempts to film my last tv story for this year.  That meant I needed to get the house " tv ready " twice.  Normally I can do this without a problem.  But when you feel like crawling into bed,  it can be a challenge.  With the events that happend in Sydney,  there were challenges in finding a camera crew available in Melbourne.

We've also had the usual Christmas breakup dinners to attend,  school presentation nights,  VCE info nights,  a school hiking camp for Megan and the usual housework to do.  Jessica is working more shifts in the lead up to Christmas and Megan started working at the church cafe.

Thankfully my Christmas shopping was almost complete before all this craziness decended upon our normally quiet home.

As for " THE MENU PLAN ",  well,  it's on the fridge but lets just say, it went out the window.  I had a vague memory of writing it a month ago but with so many things on,  there were many days when I didn't even have time to look at it.  Some days we stuck to the menu plan.  Other days we swapped meals around and other days we ate out of the freezer.  Jessica and Megan cooked a few nights when I was sick.  Some nights we just ate what each of us felt like.

Menu plans are very important to have.  They can bring some stability when craziness fills your life.  They are also meant to be flexible when the best laid plans go out the window ( with the menu plan ).

Having a well stocked pantry,  fridge and freezer helps to stay on track with your grocery spending too.  Although we didn't cook everything on the menu plan,  we used those ingredients to make other meals.  Having meals in the freezer was a big help as well.  When my throat was at it's most painful,  spag bol came to the rescue as  I needed to eat something soft .  I always cook the meat sauce in bulk and freeze it into meal portions.

If you haven't tried writing a menu plan before,  I encourage you to give it a try.  It might not be possible to stick to it all the time,  but it's comforting to know you've planned your meals as best as you can.

As for next month's menu plan,  I'll write it again knowing it will help us through Christmas and the holiday season..


  1. I'd love to hear what you do for lunches

  2. Hi Wendy, similar things have happened to us as unexpected events have come up and we have even been to lunches/dinners where we have been given food to take home which we've eaten the next day, so the menu plan has to be rearranged. Also thank goodness for frèezer meals. Thanks for this post and I hope things settle down for you and your family abit this week so you can relax and enjoy Christmas, Blessings, Maureen

  3. Sounds very familiar with all the busyness of the Christmas season. I haven't been able to stick with my menu plan either. Wont be long and things will return to normal. It was a blessing to have those extra meals prepared, they certainly came in handy for you.

    Hope you are feeling better Wendy xx

  4. I know exactly how you feel, our menu plan hasn't worked so well this month, thankfully I had meals in the freezer and a well stocked pantry we've also had the school presentation evening, a scout/guide Xmas function, we had to drive 4hrs to CSU albury/wodonga UNI for an open day and look for share housing for my daughter as she has been accepted as a prep student. She's also been away at camp and my son had his tonsils/adenoids surgery on Sat. which meant 2 of us were away overnight, poor thing can't eat much Xmas dinner will be a challenge for him. Thankfully no food has been wasted and most of my Xmas organisation was finished before our hospital stay. This week when I get a few minutes I'll write up our Jan meal plan, I really find it helps my family stay organised and on track and as I keep a freezer inventory it's always easy to see what's available when things don't always work out to plan.
    Hope you and your family have a wonderful Xmas and new year

  5. How helpful that you are well organized Wendy! We also had our best laid plans interrupted by illness but I was unfortunately not as prepared as other years in the lead up to Christmas. We had a fortnight away until December 1st, then my daughter's baby shower to finalize and host! I couldn't manage last minute rush being the norm I have found out this year! It is great to be organized as you have shown.

  6. Remember a menu plan is just that - an intention. It should be a guide to support you and not hinder you when things in our month change a little or we've sick. You still stuck to your plan: which was to keep to budget friendly and home made meals, just in a different order of choice. It's a great opportunity to practise flexibility, and be proud of all the cooking, freezing, and help your family can provide. Sally xo


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