When you have done something for a long time, and it comes naturally to you, you can fail to see the benefit it may bring others by talking about it.
You just presume everyone does it your way, or their way. Or any way at all.
But that isn’t always the case.
For example I’ve always been a bit haphazard with my make-up routine. Or lack of it. It’s kind of ‘all or nothing’.
I saw this on Facebook the other day, shared by a friend, and it really made me laugh. The truth is so funny.
If a night out, or special event, was on the cards, I’d find a good gap of time to spend and do my make-up thoroughly. But an everyday routine just never came together – although I have recently got it sussed at the grand old age of 40 (now 41) – thanks to Zoella. Have you met Zoella yet? I love her. As do my kids.
The strange thing about the clip below is Zoella jokes it will be a ‘What’s in my fridge’ video. Cue Twilight Zone theme tune…
When I asked for help to improve Food Waste Friday (see my video here) it reminded me that just because I know what I am doing, do you?
Hand on heart, I sincerely believe that the secret weapon to reducing the food we waste is in effective meal-planning. Meal-planning is something I have done ever since I moved into my first home at 25. Why? No idea. It just seemed a natural thing to do.
One of my house-warming gifts from my Mom was a kitchen chalkboard. What better use for it than to become a menu board.
Today I’m not going to give you a long list of all the things you need to do to meal-plan, or suggest you download an app. Rather I’m going to recommend that in doing it my way, it consist of one main ingredient;
This is where all effective planning begins in my opinion.
If you read my blog regularly you will already know I am a huge advocate of family communication. This blog post explains.
We have a weekly meeting, most weeks. This is where it all starts.
I know our family diary for the forthcoming week. Sensibly this meeting tends to take place on a Thursday. The night before my Friday routine.
After I have completed my Food Waste Friday/No Waste Tastes Great routine, I plan our meals from Saturday-Thursday for the week coming. And then write the grocery list.
Our meal plan looks like this currently:
I then simply jot down on a sheet of paper the items I need to make those meals.
This I do in sections – it kind of follows my path round the store that I am going to.
This week it was Aldi as I needed to do just one shop in one location. I have recently started shopping at the local farm shop much more and on those weeks my grocery list is structured a little differently – but I’ll blog about that separately as it’s a subject in it’s own right.
There is no great science behind the planning, nor secret formula. The success of meal-planning lies in just doing it, until you get used to doing it, and until you get a system that works for you. Make it too complicated or time-consuming and you won’t do it – that’s one thing I know for sure. There are weeks I forget items, and have to go and grab things at the last minute, that’s human nature. But as long as 80% of the time it’s working out then I really cannot ask for more.
If you want to read a more in-depth outline of how to meal plan from start to finish I do have The Simple Guide To Meal Planning.
Again however I’d suggest don’t worry about the semantics – Just do it. Have a go.
A bit like the way I took Zoella’s make-up advise and adapted it to what I needed, and to fit my life. Aka condensed it to a 2 minute routine, after all I’ve Kids to get to school!
Meal plan YOUR way.