One of the great things about being married to a farmer is we always have tons of raised-by-us meat in the freezer. One of the bad things about that is the freezer!
I enjoy cooking, but I have this bad habit of leaving the meat in the freezer until it's time to prepare a meal. Then, I have to spend lots of time defrosting it. Or, I inevitably run into that, "What the heck am I going to cook" dilemma.
So, a while back, I devised a simple menu board to help me with that planning. I took a picture frame that was laying around collecting dust with no picture, a piece of scrapbook paper, and some sticker letters. I whipped them together and bought a pack of wet-erase markers. Here's the result:
I saw much more complex versions on Pinterest, but this simple idea works for us. At the beginning of the week, I make a menu, and I do my best to stick to it. Of course, there are always last minute plans that change things. (Ie: Greg says he'll be home in 10 minutes to eat, and the meal for that day requires 30. Or, Greg's in the field or at the farm, and I need something easy to take to him.) For the most part, however, the menu board makes life simpler.
It really accomplishes a few things. First, it reminds me to get things out of the freezer. If I need corn or beef the next day, I get it out to defrost the night before. Secondly, it helps me make avoid questions like, "Haven't we already had ham three times this week?" Finally, as I plan, it helps me incorporate new recipes into our meals.
Do you guys do any sort of menu planning? What's it look like at your house?