Making The Mealtime Madness EASIER!

Not too long ago, I wrote about a day in my life right now – that of a Stay At Home Mom, Property Manager, Home Renovator, and Aspiring Novelist.

In that post, I cooked and cleaned up two meals before noon. Realistically, that is not what most days are like, because most days I prepare breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and clean-up breakfast, lunch, and dinner, among all of the other responsibilities that come with being a mom/wife/human being, stay at home or not. But lately, with the craziness that is driving to/decorating/repairing the Ventura house for our first Airbnb guests (and WOW it’s been a whole helluva lot more work than I even imagined), we’ve been eating out a lot more frequently. And to that I say gross.

Why?

Because if the menu doesn’t say your food is organic or hormone free or even Grade A quality, it probably isn’t. Most restaurants, especially of the chain variety, source the cheapest products they possibly can, products I would NEVER buy myself.

It’s no secret that food and food quality are important to me, in fact I partially attribute this surprise pregnancy to my 90 Day No Supplement Challenge.  During those 3-months, I was a healthy eating and cooking MACHINE. We ate greens at every single meal. We ate sustainable seafood twice a week. We ate lots of yummy, nutrient packed goodness. We avoided any highly processed grains.

Homemade granola I made during the 90 Day Challenge.
Homemade granola I made during the 90 Day Challenge.

But then I got pregnant, and then I got sick. I was too sick to cook anything beyond scrambled eggs and toast for a good 3.5 months, eating only what sounded good in the moment because I felt so incredibly ill.

And while I’m still mildly nauseous 50% of the time, I’m wildly hungry the rest, but also insanely busy. Getting to the grocery store once a week to pick up anything beyond the basics (Ezekial bread, free range eggs, grass fed cheese, and some fruit) just hasn’t been working out. When I have done big shops for produce, at places like Costco where organic produce is now the norm, half the stuff has gone bad which makes me feel EXTREMELY guilty. The food waste in the Western world disgusts me when I’m all too aware of the hunger pains in so many other places…  (I strive to be a globally conscience and socially aware citizen who also values free speech and disdains our current “trigger” culture, but that’s a post for another time…).

So I have decided to try something I haven’t done for over two years.

Back then we dabbled with Dream Dinners, but stopped when organic/grass fed eating became more important to us, something the service didn’t offer at the time. The food was decent and convenient, but restaurant quality doesn’t always mean the best quality.

But now there’s been an explosion of meal and recipe delivery services I’ve been drying to try. Blue Apron. Plated. Green Chef. Freshly. My mouth drools when I look at their menus! And my stomach is growling RIGHT NOW. (Have I mentioned I’m already up 25 pounds this pregnancy at 20 weeks? Yeah.).

Last week we received our first Green Chef box. It’s too early to write the full scale review I have planned, but I’ll tell you this: the meat quality was EXCELLENT. The steaks were tender and perfectly seasoned, per their directions. The salmon was moist and fresh tasting. The produce was bright and flagrant. But it’s pricey.

Next up Blue Apron and Freshly.

After I’ve tried all three, I’ll review all three. Stomach growl.

In the meantime, I’m looking for more tips like the one Hoping on Hope posted recently about how she handles meal prep for the week. I KNOW you guys are full of ways I can make this cooking for my family and myself business easier.

Whatcha got? What are you making for your babies and toddlers this week and weekend? How the heck are you feeding yourself and your little people? Tell. Me. Everything.

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12 comments

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  1. idioglossiablog

    The crock pot is my best friend! I usually make enough for two dinners. If your not a fan of having the same meal back to back, you can freeze one half. Don’t forget to stock up on crock pot liners. They make life so much easier! G-uno

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      • idioglossiablog

        I love to make a whole chicken with potatoes, carrots, and Kale. You wash the chicken in cold water. Clean your veggies, and cut them into the size of your choice. placing everything into the pot. Pour a bit of extra virgin olive oil across the top of your food. Add a few squeezes of fresh lemon or lime. Lightly salt and pepper to taste. Then cook on high for 5-6 hours. The chicken should easily fall off the bone. 🙂 Easy on the stomach, and your wallet. G-uno

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  2. cassiedash

    I wish I had some tips/tricks to share, but I’m still trying to streamline the whole process myself. I used to do all my prep work (chopping veggies, etc.) for a week’s worth of meals on Sunday, but then I started dreading Sundays and stopped doing that. :p I will often do my prep work earlier in the day, though, so I’m not in such a rush at dinnertime. And If I’m making a meal, I often make extra so that we have leftovers to eat right away or freeze. And in my last two pregnancies, I have made HUGE batches of freezer meals and have stocked our freezer full of casseroles, pastas, muffins, waffles, and everything else you can think of. I made so much that after Skittle was born, I didn’t have to do any cooking for a full six months, which was AWESOME. It’s a lot to do while pregnant, but totally worth it once you have your hands full with a newborn.

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    • Steph Mignon

      That is a brilliant idea! I’ve heard of people doing that, but your comment has hammered the point home (literally). Deciding what to eat is a huge point of contention in this house, and add in a newborn with a toddler, and I think having 6-months of meals ready for action is a brilliant idea! Plus I could probably eat a whole casserole to myself right now, so hey, maybe I’ll just make two and freeze one haha.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. mylifeasacasestudy

    Ditto–the crockpot is the best shortcut to healthy home cooked meals. You can even prepare the meals ahead of time (chop up veggies, etc.) and have them ready so all you have to do is dump them in the pot, turn it on, and set the timer.
    My kid eats all variety of homemade organic fruit and vegetable pureés. I keep thinking *I* should eat them too, because I think they’re delicious. But instead I end up eating not awesome stuff. Lately it’s GF bagel w/organic cream cheese and no-sugar-added apple butter, or GF apple cinnamon waffles w/organic pb & organic maple syrup, or southwestern egg tostadas (corn tortilla, organic black beans, fried egg, green chiles, feta cheese & fried plantains on the side)–this is breakfast. Lunch and dinner are whatevers clever–soup, salad, sandwich, etc. I don’t eat enough fruit and veggies and I’m up to at least 2 xups of coffee per day, and lately a lot of starbucks PSL’s. But when Mr. MLACS is home I cook more, especially crock pot meals. XOXO

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