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Sept 1. Now what?

September 1, 2009

So… I thought I’d be starting my Pantry challenge today.. however.. I’m still (gasp) NOT finished unpacking.. and honestly.. the Pantry isn’t nearly as full as I’d thought originally… so I’m rethinking my challenge… we have NO meat in the freezer, nothing to speak of in our fridge either (other than some fresh fruits and Milk)…

I think I need to come up with another plan …

Anyone have any suggestions?

The only that come to mind is that I could:

1. Buy ONLY items for meal that can be supplemented with sides already in the pantry

2. Buy only meats in family packs and do not replenish until only ONE meal is left for a given meat.

3. Buy fresh fruits and veggies for snacks and meals on a weekly basis so as NOT to have waste

4. Start my weekly meal preps on the weekends (I used to follow this regularly)…which means… on the weekend I plan and prep all the meals for the week … ie purchase and prep veggies if needed, if the meats are freshly purchased, freezer bag them by meal, and in marinade if needed. Sounds more complex than it really is… it makes it super easy really… to be able to pull out that chicken breast that was frozen in it’s marinade and thaw it the night before needed and have the veggies ready so that prep is so minimal… all that needs to happen is the cooking…

5. Go back to the weekend schedule… need to review this with Carlisle.. but we used to follow:
Monday- mexican
Tuesday – Italian
Wednesday – American
Thursday – Leftovers
Friday – Pizza/Fish
Saturday/Sunday flexible

Having that schedule always makes prep that much easier πŸ™‚

Well.. off to get working on some knitting for my Harry Potter group… The Fall Term began today.. I’m so excited… πŸ™‚

5 Comments leave one →
  1. September 4, 2009 6:52 pm

    If you don’t already have one, a Food Saver vacuum sealer is a real money saver in our house. The bags are a thick plastic, and they prevent freezer burn. We also sometimes have enough for one serving of food, but know we won’t eat it right away, so we foodsaver it. One weekend we took out all the little servings we had foodsaver’d and had a week worth of leftovers to play with… was fun and we didn’t have to do big grocery shopping that week.

    I’m so glad you’re back on the computer.

  2. September 2, 2009 8:04 am

    We plan our meals every Sunday and we’ve gotten pretty good about sticking to it. πŸ™‚

  3. September 2, 2009 7:51 am

    We used #5 when the Page was at home. We sat down one mid-week evening when we were all home and planned the upcoming week’s menu. As the Page got older, it was his job to scan the pantry and the freezer to determine what I needed to put on the shopping list. There were spells when I knew we needed to focus on meals that would “rotate stock” which is probably what you’d like to do…

  4. September 2, 2009 7:12 am

    Welcome back! How is the new home??

    Good luck with your challenge. I need to focus more on this, as I always end up buy way more produce than I end up using up (luckily I can get two weeks worth of produce for 20$ at the local Mexican grocers). Kim O’Donnel (formerly the food writer for the Washington Post) has done some great blogging on the subject of Eating Down the Fridge, and has started fairly regular EDF Challenges. is her current site, and she runs weekly interactive chats on

    The menu planning might be the easiest way to go… plan, check the pantry and then only buy the things you don’t have to make the dinners you want for the week, and nothing else at the store. Good luck!!

  5. September 2, 2009 1:00 am

    Not sure if this helps or not, but my meal plan looks most like #5. I plan it all Fri or Sat, then shop Sat or Sun. I prefer to shop on Saturday, but often my work schedule kept me shopping on Sunday. Then all week, I just look at the calendar to see what’s for dinner. Usually by 4pm I’m braindead anyways. Check out Gayle’s blog… She’s sticking to a $60 budget for a family of 6!

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