At the beginning of the year I started budgeting, planning menus and shopping the CVS deals. Everything in that arena was going well until baby #3 came along. It seems that everything in my life got off kilter for a while as I learned to adjust to the chaos of having 3 little ones.
Baby J is now almost 8 months old and has been sleeping through the night for a while, not crying all the time and just generally happier. I'm dealing with my PPD with meds and I'm taking meds for pain that I've been experiencing. I overall feel a lot better. Things still get stressful with having 3 babes but it's gotten a bit easier.
So now that days are a little better I decided to try to menu plan again and stay within a budget again. Our gastrointestinal systems are a bit out of whack and we've gained some weight b/c of eating out, mostly pizza carry out. I also really enjoy making dinner but often I'm so tired by 5 o'clock and that seems to be the witching hour for the kids as well so often a homemade dinner doesn't happen. Some things I've thought of to try to head off the typical 5 o'clock pattern is thinking ahead about dinner and prepping it either the night before or a little at a time throughout the day. Setting out all the ingredients for the meal I plan to prepare the day of the planned meal, the unrefrigerated ones. And last but definitely my favorite, throw a bunch of crap into the crockpot in the morning and let it go all day until dinner time.
Upon realizing the blessing of a crockpot I searched online for crockpot recipes and found a really helpful site A Year of Crockpotting. The blogger's intent was to use their crockpot everyday for a year- I urge you to check it out and take advantage of some of the recipes to make dinner time a little less hectic. Another website that has been helpful too when it comes to making economical dinners that are easy, $5 Dinners. This blogger has made it a goal to make frugal meals, $5 for her particular family, and urges others to pick a dollar amount that allows you to make frugal and healthy meals for your own families. And one more website that I find helpful is The Aldi Queen. Amy Clark provides a few different menus using items exclusively from Aldi's. Recently I've made a decision to shop at Aldi's more so her menu plan and shopping list is very helpful and is just what I needed. I'm so grateful for all the mom bloggers out there who use their powers for good-to help other moms.
I went shopping today for two weeks worth of meals, diapers and wipes. I won't be doing that again with the kids in tow, it was like Bebe's Kids running around the store, momma yelling, etc. etc. But even though it was stressful I'm excited to have a menu plan and all the fixins needed to make some yummy dinners. I'm starting to feel like I can breathe again.