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Daily Archives: December 2, 2017

A Week of Dinners: Plan versus Reality

Hello everyone and happy Saturday!

I hope you had a wonderful week. Mine absolutely flew by! Next Wednesday is our last day of class, so I’ve been plenty busy with assignments and group projects as things wrap up. I’ll be done exactly two weeks from yesterday. I am so ready to see this semester in my rear view mirror. It has been a doozy!

I’m here today to show you my plan for dinners this week and what I actually ended up eating. I don’t meal plan in order to control calories or to limit the types of food I eat. I meal plan because it helps me ensure I’ll have something tasty to eat each night and because it’s practical. I don’t want to come up with meals on the spot and make multiple trips to the store each week! Intuitive Eating involves honoring what you want to eat when you want to eat, but I can’t wait until I’m hungry for dinner to pick out what to cook or buy. It would be great to have access to any food I want at any time and be able to pick from all my options, but that’s not reality. That actually sounds kind of overwhelming!

So on Sunday, Chip and I talk about what days we want to cook based on our schedules. I plan for my dinners and buy all the ingredients that day. Chip usually decides on a recipe and grocery shops day-of. (Side note: This is another reason food freedom is so wonderful. I don’t have to worry about what Chip is cooking or micromanage his plans, and I can fully enjoy whatever chooses to make.) I do usually “assign” a meal to a certain night to make it easy, but if I’m not feeling what’s on the plan, I will swap around a couple of meals. I do try to keep easy things on hand, like pasta and sauce or fish and rice in case nothing sounds great or I don’t want to plan a meal for one night.

This week was a little different than usual. Chip left to go home for Christmas break on Tuesday, so I was on my own in the food department the rest of the week. I also knew I had a lot more free time this week and could run back to the grocery store later on, which I usually try to avoid. So all that to say, every week is different and obviously things would be totally different if I had a family to feed or if I had a really busy schedule. But I want to show that you CAN plan meals you enjoy and find satisfying while leaving room for what you want and feel like making. It doesn’t have to be a rigid plan. Brace yourselves for ugly food pictures, because it’s pitch black at dinner time now-I’m missing those long summer days!

So here’s what the plan was:

Sunday-Chip cooks

Monday-Bacon and bean soup with bread

Tuesday-Leftovers or Chip cooks

Wednesday-Tilapia, rice, broccoli

Thursday-Rotisserie chicken, potatoes, green beans

Friday-Rotisserie chicken, grain mix or pasta, vegetable

And here’s what I ended up doing:

Sunday-Chip cooked as we planned! It was one of those nights where neither of us had an opinion on what we wanted to eat. Eventually he went out to get a frozen pizza and bag of broccoli. I think the pizza was the DiGiorno rising crust pepperoni, and it was really good. It was gooey as you can probably see, and it could have cooked a few more minutes, but we were hungry and impatient.

Monday-I made the bacon and bean soup as planned. I had a bag of celery and carrots in the freezer leftover from another soup that I really wanted to use. I wanted to make white bean soup, but I couldn’t find any recipes that fit the bill, so I made my own. It turned out to be pretty good! I’m going to make it again in a few weeks and tweak a few things, then share it here. It was super ugly, though, so here’s a picture of bread.

I found a bag of baguette slices at Target this week and used those to make mini cheese toast/butter toast. They were the perfect addition to the meal.

Tuesday-I had a ton of leftover soup, so we had that again. I also had it for lunch several days this week.

Wednesday-I got home from babysitting a little later than usual and was just not feeling the meal I planned, which was tilapia, rice, and broccoli. Some days fish just really doesn’t sound appetizing to me. So I whipped up a really fancy dinner from these three things…

Chip was kind enough to bring me this box of mac and cheese he had leftover when he left for Christmas break. The turkey meatballs were pretty boring without sauce, so I put some in the mac and cheese and tossed the rest.

Thursday-The plan was rotisserie chicken, potatoes, and green beans, and that’s what I had! I went back to the grocery store to pick those things up. I also left with a candle and a face mask. Whoops, that’s what happens when you grocery shop at Super Target. I tossed the potatoes and green beans with olive oil, garlic powder, salt, and pepper and roasted them at 400 for about 30 minutes.

Friday-I planned on having more rotisserie chicken with grain mix or pasta and a vegetable. I had plenty of left over roasted potatoes, so I had those with rotisserie chicken and more roasted broccoli. This meal got the job done, but I’m looking forward to trying some different recipes next week. I love simple meals like this, but by day 2 I was feeling bored. Especially with broccoli. Note to self: mix it up in the vegetable department next week!

As for today, I didn’t plan anything for dinner. Usually on the weekend I make something from the freezer/pantry, we get take out, or we go out to eat. I’ll probably end up making pasta with tomato sauce and meatballs, since I already have it all. After that, I’m headed to Michelle’s for a Christmas cookie party! I’m pretty excited to break out my ugly Christmas sweater. I hope you all have a great weekend!