Home Philosophy

A place to develop the attitude, ideology, aesthetics, and values of your home


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Menu Planning + FREE PRINTABLE

source: coopfoodstore.com

source: coopfoodstore.com

I must admit, I hate grocery shopping with a passion. I think it’s just the lazy side of me and I really don’t like spending money. However, it must be done and I am the designated grocery shopper.

Each week, I have the task of figuring out which meals to do for the next 7 days. I recycle a lot of meals, but sometimes I like to experiment with a new meal. I would say the majority of the time that experimental meal doesn’t go well. Aside from that catastrophe, I typically use Microsoft Word to organize the meals and shopping list. It works, but it’s not pretty and I’m asked daily what’s for lunch and dinner. And to be quite honest, it’s “out of sight, out of mind,” so sometimes I don’t keep up with it.

To try and remedy that, I made up a Menu Planner and Grocery List printable that I’m going to start using. I’m also going to put it up on the fridge so my dearest can see exactly what’s tasty that day. He’ll probably still ask me though.Menu Planning

I wanted to make it available to my readers in case it could make your life any easier or more aesthetically pleasing.

Download the FREE printable HERE.

Benefits of Menu Planning

1. Saves Time

  • My menu planning motto is, “cook once, eat twice.” That’s why I cook enough for dinner and lunch the next day. This saves my brain from worrying about the next meal.
  • You don’t need to go to the grocery store every day. I like to go once a week.
  • There’s no “What’s for dinner” dilemma. I know in my household, if I don’t have a meal planned, there’s a lot of back and forth of “What do you want for dinner?” “I don’t know, what do you want?” “I have no idea. What sounds good?” “Mmm, I don’t know. What do you think?” Have you had this conversation before? 🙂

 

2. Saves Money

  • I end up spending more money if there’s no menu planned for the week. I’ll get the meal we want at the store and I may not realize that it doesn’t fit into the weekly food budget. If I do this multiple times throughout the week without being conscious of the amount of money each meal is costing, I’ve lost the food budget I had.
  • If there’s no menu planned, I impulse shop as I’m shopping for the meal of the night. I think, “Oh yeah, I may need some lettuce or something within the next few days.” Now I’m just guessing at what I MIGHT need. Many times, that lettuce goes to waste.

 

3. Improved Nutrition

  • With a menu, I am fully aware of how healthy each meal is. If it’s one of those quick trips to the grocery store, we probably didn’t think too much about how healthy the meal is because we’re hungry and just want to be done with it. The menu provides me a way to add in those fruits and vegetables for side dishes and snacks that a daily dash to the store doesn’t.

 

I hope that the FREE template helps you create a more organized, stress free home. If you’d like it more tailored to your needs, let me know!
Side note: I suggest, if you download it, print on both sides of the paper. 

By the way, look out for one of the “3 Things to Cook/Bake” from my “Taste of the Seasons” series. I’ll be cooking up some chicken pot pie sometime this week.

Happy shopping, home philosophers!

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9 Ways to Taste Fall

I have this crazy desire to do things I’ve never done before ranging from simple to wild. I’m feeling somewhat stagnant since summer has ended and my activities have come to turtle speed. Does anyone else feel like this?

Just because summer has ended doesn’t mean I still can’t challenge myself and do new things. I’ve been trying to come up with a way to do this that accommodates not going outside as much. Don’t get me wrong, I freaking love the rain, wind, and dark clouds. However, let’s be honest, I won’t be hiking, camping, ziplining, or river rafting in the fall or winter. I also need these challenges and new things to be budget friendly.

I want it to be reminiscent of the season as well. I’ll be doing a seasonal venture called:I just realized there’s only one month of autumn left. WHAT. I better get crackin’ before December 21 arrives.

I would love for you to join me in challenging yourself by cooking something you’ve been dying to try out, a craft that is on your endless Pinterest craft board, or visit some place you’ve been curious about.

I’ve made a list of 3 things to cook/bake, 3 crafts to complete on my Pinterest board, and 3 new things I’d like to try this colorful season.

3 Things to Cook/Bake: Chicken Pot Pie, Caramel Apple Crisp, Homemade Applesauce

3 Things to Craft: Felt Leaves Decor, Cornhusk Votive or Centerpiece, Autumn Tasty Gift Bag

3 New Things to Try: Apple Picking, Taste a New Seasonal Alcoholic Beverage, Find a Farm with Fresh Cider

Look out for tutorials and recipes for the crafts and noms mentioned above.

What is (or was!) on your autumn list? Did you do anything that you haven’t done before? Let’s hear it! Feel free to post to your website so we can see your stuff.

Home philosophers, raise your glass to the Taste of Autumn and let’s enjoy the last month shall we?

PS – I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.


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“Grow Your Groceries”

Growing fruits and vegetables often seems overwhelming and too much responsibility on top of everything else you have going on.

But let me tell you that it’s actually quite simple if you have the right resources to help you. Not to mention the awesome benefits.

1. It’ll improve your and your family’s health. The Journal of the American Dietetic Association published a study that found preschool children who were almost always served homegrown produce were more than twice as likely to eat five servings of fruits and vegetables a day – and to like them more – than kids who rarely or never ate homegrown produce.

2. Save money on groceries. There’s a couple ways this will happen. First, you know you won’t be buying an excess of produce, which is a money waster. I know there are times when a recipe calls for a fresh herb, so I purchase a small container and don’t end up using all of it. Total waste! The second way you’ll save money is by buying seeds, which are inexpensive, and watching your garden flourish with fresh produce. You can even save the seeds from the best producers, dry them, and use them next year. It doesn’t end there though because you could learn how to can and preserve your summer and fall harvest to have tasty meals until the next season.

3. Better tasting food. Tomatoes totally taste better homegrown than in the grocery store.  This isn’t the only food that produces those results. Fresh always tastes better, wouldn’t you agree?

4. You know where your food came from and what’s on it. Okay, so how many people have touched the produce in the grocery store? What’s that waxy stuff on apples? I wonder where that dent came from. That looks like a fingernail went through it. I wonder how much pesticides and herbicides are on this? Now that I’ve grossed you out… 🙂 You get my point though.

5. You’ll be super proud of yourself. The sense of pride one feels when that sprout comes up is a joyous one. It’s working, it’s working! And when it’s fully grown, you pick it off the branch, look at it and realize you accomplished something super cool. You now get the gratification that YOU did this. Growing your own produce has multiple purposes and you made it happen.

Now that you know about the perks, you may be thinking that you don’t have a big fancy garden or your own yard to do this. Well, you don’t need those things. My friend is one of the biggest green thumbs I’ve ever met. She builds her vegetable garden in pots and containers and puts them on her balcony at her apartment. Non-traditional and it totally works.

You can even find out if your city has a community garden where you can rent your own plot. Check out acga.localharvest.org to locate a community garden near you or do a Google search for “[your city] community garden” and see what comes up.

Another amazing resource that I came across is SproutRobot. You put in your zip code and it tells you what and when to plant according to your area. It gives fantastic instructions on how to plant each vegetable/fruit, when it should sprout, and when you should harvest. They even email you to remind you when to plant. It’s easy to use, user friendly, and a fabulous system to have in your life. The site is definitely worth checking out.

Source: sproutrobot.com

If you have children, get them involved. They’ll learn a skill that they can use for the rest of their lives that will help them stay healthy and productive. Help them to develop their own home philosophy all while continuing to develop yours.

Whatever your motivation to start growing your groceries, chances are good that you’ll enjoy a new hobby, thin your wallet, and eat healthier.

This is certainly something I’ve been wanting to do, so try it out with me. I’d love to see photos of your garden (whether it’s in a yard or in a pot) and hear about your experiences.

Happy planting, home philosophers!