Why do I insist on spelling out a menu for each day’s dinner?
Wouldn’t it be just as easy to sort of mix and match, putting together a week’s worth of ideas and then just deciding at the moment what to make?
Maybe for some people it is, but if you have a busy household, try to follow the Christian liturgical calendar, and also have a tendency to space out over a good book or phone conversation with a distant friend, my way might be for you!
Get your family to help you make your very own menus. As you do this, your creative ideas will flow, and you will finally put to good use those ideas you have as you are reading cookbooks or magazines.
Next week is a good example of why I like to assign a specific menu to a specific day, going so far as to write in my menu plan what is going on that day.
Tuesday the 17th is St. Patrick’s Day, and also a day I will be out in the late afternoon, not coming back in the door until 5:30.
I’ll be making what I always make on this day — Corned beef dinner and Irish Soda bread. But, I spell it out on my menu, because if I don’t have cabbage and red potatoes and buttermilk, then this simple dinner will not come off!
Wednesday the 18th is Will’s birthday. I have to remember to ask him what he wants for dinner, and I have to schedule baking a cake. I also have to get Bridget from choir practice to dance practice and won’t be home until 7:15!
Thursday is the Feast of St. Joseph. This glorious saint, wonderful protector of the family, of virgins, of the Church, of the soul — intercessor to God for all our daily needs — deserves a proper remembrance! I want to prepare for that.
But it’s a day when I have a CCD class in the afternoon and Bridget’s dance class from 6:00 until 7:30 with a half-hour drive each way! And wait! I have to be at a committee meeting at 7 pm in the next town!
Great! I’ll bi-locate! I can do this! Not!
Friday we will have a Lenten supper with friends. Again, simple — but I better be ready! I’ll be gone all morning with Bridget’s orchestra.
And this schedule only represents the ridiculous activities of one child! I remember when I had five children playing soccer (three on travel teams), three in dance (obviously they overlapped :) blah blah blah…. :)
What do you do about games, meetings, classes, and errands? You’ve got to have a dinner schedule!
I know that Saturday I won’t want to be cooking anything complicated. It wouldn’t do to be stuck with a more elaborate idea on that day.
Sunday we will have a family visit for Sunday dinner. I want to make a ham and the leek pie that came out so well on the Feast of St. David (patron of Wales). The ham and the pie crust are in the freezer, but I have to put leeks on the list.
Sure there can be interchangeability, both in the days and in the dishes. Just because you said salad doesn’t mean you can’t do green beans!
But if you have it written out according to the other things you have to do, you will feel so much lighter! You will be dancing with joy! Try it!
Now, we went over all of that already. You can find all the posts and documents on the sidebar under Happy Home: Food!
But we didn’t talk about breakfasts and lunches.
But I see this post is already getting long. So I will leave you with two things.
My pancake mix that makes fabulous biscuits as well; and a big Sunday breakfast casserole that will give you leftovers for early in the week — if you aren’t blessed with a horde to demolish it on the spot!
These recipes will appear in my Breakfast Recipes document on the sidebar, after I’m done talking about breakfast in my next post!
And here is a picture of my lovely mother (Habou, we call her, although her name is Elizabeth, long story) on Sunday morning: