We have had a few money struggles recently and for a while times were hard. The last week of every month was a real struggle and we were counting the days until pay day. One month we looked into quick loans. We thought this would help us to make it to the end of the month without getting us into long term debt.
Luckily things have taken a turn for the better and our money worries seem to be behind us. Obviously we still have the odd cash flow issue but times are much better than they were and pay day seems to come around much quicker each month. 🙂
Now our worries are less I am still conscious of not wasting money. We are earning more so therefore we should be able to save some money each month. We have never been very good at saving and somehow we always seem to spend a bit more than we earn. That is going to change!
I think that our biggest waste of money is food. We often throw things away as they have gone out of date and we have also been known to cook 2 meals at once as we fancy different things. Some weeks we are so unorganised and our fridge is almost empty. This leads to quick trips to the local shop and takeaways which gets expensive!
I have been reading a few blogs recently and many of them have some great meal planning posts. Some bloggers post a meal plan each week and reading them makes me feel very unorganised! I have decided that I need to get better with how much money we spend on food and I need to be more organised with my meal planning.
I have made a plan for next week and I am determined to stick to it. I am going to go shopping on Saturday and buy everything we need. I am also going to pay attention to the use by dates and make sure they match my plan. Here is what we are going to have for dinner next week.
Sunday – Roast Pork & Veggies
This is so easy to make and it’s delicious! I chop up sweet potato and carrots and throw them on a tray with some pork chops. I roast them for 30 minutes and then I add some chucks of apple and cook for a further 15 minutes. It makes much less washing up than a Sunday dinner and it is just as well received!
Monday – Chicken Fajitas
Bob loves wraps! She will eat almost anything if you put it in wrap! For my fajitas I stir fry chicken, tomatoes, peppers and red onion and just add some smoked paprika and a little chilli powder. We then add grated cheese (and guacamole and sour cream if we are pushing the boat out) as we wrap them.
Tuesday – Jamie Oliver’s Cherry Tomato & Sausage Bake
This is so yummy! You just throw sausages, cherry tomatoes and herbs in a roasting dish and add balsamic vinegar and olive oil. The sausages go deliciously sticky and it is lovely eaten with chunks of crusty bread.
Wednesday – Philadelphia Pasta
Philadelphia makes a great pasta sauce. I use the reduced fat version as I use a full tub for 1 meal. I stir fry red onion and courgettes and then I stir in the philadelphia. I then add peas and spinach. I have been using bags of spinach that I wilted in the microwave first but I recently discovered frozen spinach portions so I am going to try these. I then stir in cooked spaghetti.
Thursday – Spaghetti Bolognese
Bob loves this and would eat it everyday if I let her. I am not a fan of beef so I make it using pork mince and it’s really yummy!
Friday – Fish Pie
I make a lovely fish pie, if I do say so myself. I use cheese sauce instead of white sauce which makes it even more delicious! This is also handy as it can be made in advance and then popped in the oven 45 minutes before we would like to eat it.
Saturday – Lettuce Parcels
I used to love lettuce parcels when we went out for a Chinese. You wouldn’t think cold lettuce would go with a warm filling but it really does! I sometimes make this with minced pork but, as we are having a lot of pork this week, I am going to make them with chicken. I stir fry small chunks of chicken and diced pepper, red onion, baby corn and mange tout. I then add Chinese five spice and soy sauce. When it’s ready we wrap it in pieces of lettuce and enjoy.
I am quite looking forward to following my plan. Staring into the refrigerator wondering what on earth you are going to feed your family is not nice. Hopefully this is the start of a new, more organised mummy!
Disclaimer: This is a collaborative post.