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Anyone that has come into contact with me in the last couple weeks or so has been bored to tears might have heard me mention my latest adventure.
While down yonder at Blissdom during our rocking night out at The New Orleans Manor, my IRLBBFF (in real life bloggy BFF) Shannan opened my eyes to a whole new wonderful world of FRU-”gals”: MommySnacks; Stretching A Buck, $5 Dollar Dinners, Once A Month Moms (if I have forgotten any of you, it’s certainly not because I lack love love love for you, it’s because my brain has the retention skills of a lima bean…yum…lima beans…I’m hungry…)
Where was I? Ah, yes Once A Month Mom…
As I posted in my earlier love letter to Tricia and Cortney, I was giving their system a try this past weekend with my sister-in-law, Lorraine. I’m happy to report that I’m just as excited about Once A Month Mom Cooking today as I was last week before actually doing it!
The beauty of this approach is Tricia’s step-by-step instruction sheets that keep you focused and on track. Like I told my husband (who by the way helped immensely on the big cooking day! Thanks hon!), anyone can find some recipes and make a grocery list (believe me, I’ve done it hundreds of time only to have the food go bad and the canned goods collect dust). But the instructions on what to do and when to do it are invaluable. Even for a complete novice cook, it’s easy enough to follow and execute. Don’t get me wrong – it’s work. The instruction sheet has no magical powers (darn!), but this sheet makes it doable.
Lorraine and I got started around 9:30am on Saturday and we had everything bagged and tagged by 5:00pm (just in time for girl’s night out!!). You definitely need to do this project with a partner. Without Lorraine, I would have easily lost focus and gotten bored and given up. Your buddy keeps you motivated and it’s always nice to have an extra set of eyes and an extra brain to double check yourself.
We spent approximately $240 for all the meals – I think about 80 meals total (40 for each family: approximately 15 breakfasts, 10 lunches and 15 dinners). So you can’t beat the savings in time and money. Bonus: I cleaned out my freezer with my stockpile of chicken breasts and ground beef that was wasting away, and got to take a peek in that spice cabinet that had cobwebs on it.
Photo courtesy of MommyWriter
But for me the proof is in the pudding…and the OAM meals do not disappoint. Lorraine’s family had the Taco Soup last night and it was a huge hit. Our family had the Banana Muffins for breakfast yesterday. They were so good I didn’t even get to eat all of mine because P stole it! (Toddlers are selfish, selfish creatures.) Last night we had the Baked Chicken Burgers – yum yum yum, love the crunch of the celery – and all we had to do was pop ‘em in the oven for 20 minutes! This morning, we sat down to a FAMILY BREAKFAST on a TUESDAY before we scurried off to work and preschool. Homemade blueberry waffles no less!
The other day I was thinking about my own childhood and how central good food is in my memories. My Grandma’s Chicken & Dumplings and the smell of the turkey cooking when we’d arrive on Thanksgiving…my Mom’s meatloaf and all those sweets she whipped up when she had the time. Special times were always bookmarked by special dishes made by special people. And I want P’s memories to include a least a couple delicious things *I* make for her. I don’t want those special dishes to be made by the special people at McDonald’s all the time, you know?
I’ll keep you posted as we go along this month trying all the meals out, if they taste half as good as they smelled while we were cooking on Saturday, we’re gonna be in great shape. For busy moms and dads out there that don’t always have the time or the inspiration to make tasty, homemade meals each day, this might be right up your alley. The March Menu is up and it looks outstanding. We are hoping to cook on the 29th!