Hi everyone and thanks for tuning in.
With August almost over and back to school right around the corner the panic button has probably started ringing. Mom’s have the mixed emotions of “hallelujah” and then on the other hand “gaaa, I’m going to miss these little guys” and “crap, I have to start packing lunches" Meanwhile the kids are oblivious and just raring to get back and hang out with their friends in the schoolyard.
As we’re all parents here we’re pretty much in the same boat so here I have 10 tips to get you organized and out of that door with more than 5 minutes to spare on a morning.
- My number one timesaver is my crockpot and/or Instapot. All it typically takes is a few ingredients, dump them in, switch on (VERY important step here, and believe me I’ve forgotten this once or twice which SUCKS when you’re looking forward to getting home to a delicious cooked meal…and….NOTHING!). Finally serve and enjoy.
- There are some handy Facebook groups for the ye ol’ Crockpot and Instapot recipes but one of my favourite websites is budgetbytes.com This website is full of yummy and cheap recipes to feed a crowd on a budget.
- Make large batches and freeze. This gal (Happy Money Saver) has tips for making a MONTHS worth of freezer meals in one day, if you feel like a challenge. If not just choose your top 3. Then when you can't be bother to cook, pull it out of the freezer, heat and serve....et voila!
- We all love to socialize but let’s face it, we’re busy people so don’t always get the chance to hang out in a hip coffee shop sans kids like we dream of. So why not invite over a couple of friends and have a meal prep day. How this works is, you all make a different freezer friendly dish or two and share them out between everyone, that way you get a selection of different meals…some which you didn’t have to cook (bonus!) and you get to hang out with your besties (P.S this is also a wine friendly activity).
- Invest in some good quality produce storage containers. This will help prevent produce going bad too quickly and will save you money and time as it will all be organized as opposed to a jumble of fruit and veggies.
- Prepare and chop veggies ahead of time. i.e onion, broccoli, cheese sticks. Then when it comes to making dinner you have everything pre chopped and ready to go, plus it means less cleaning up to do ;)
- Grab and go snacks/lunches #heckyes. Hands up if you cringe when you hear “Mooooooooommmmmm, I need a snack!” every….two…minutes!) The Super Healthy Kids website has it down pat and is genius in my opinion.
from your pre-chopped veggies, portion out into small containers or zipper bag with a small container of dip, cheese sticks, mini mandarin oranges, dried fruit and nuts, granola bars, individual yogurts…..anything you can think of that’s quick and easy to grab and doesn’t require “mom” not my idea but one that has been a lifesaver for the whole family.
Happily Unprocessed also has some great prep ahead lunch kit ideas.
- Meal plan. Also a great time saver. Write up a menu, (no one likes scrambling last minute for what to cook for dinner). This way when everyone is yelling at the only person who can cook a meal in the house ;) you can either direct them towards your Pinterest worthy meal plan or yell back up the stairs to them. Scouring the weekly flyers or downloading the Flipp App is also super useful. From this you can make your shopping list and meal plan based on what items are on sale that week. This way your less likely to forget that vital ingredient and less likely to impulse buy.
- Online shopping. Seriously, this is the BEST thing EVER! Something happens when you take a child into a grocery store....they turn into wild goats, that you're constantly having to heard along from touching EVERYTHING! So yea, online shopping in the way to go and it kind of makes you feel like a celebrity having someone do your shopping for you.
Make sure you have your weekly meal plan and shopping list to hand so that you stay on track. Add the items to your virtual basket, checkout and...that's it. Either swing by the store to pick up if you're going to be out and about or pay a little extra and have it delivered right to your front door!
- Let the kids get involved, not only does this help to teach them healthy eating habits, it helps them feel a sense of accomplishment and, then you can teach them about cleaning up afterwards ;)
Still stuck for ideas? Here are some great recipe websites to get you started:
Healthy Kids snacks
Grab and Go Snacks
Light Meals, Snacks and Lunchbox Recipes
Make Ahead Lunch Ideas
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