This is the final part of The Brains of The Operation, aka Household Binder.
This is the heart of menu planning. I've talked about meal planning before. I like to shop on Saturdays. I watch the store flyers for good deals and try and plan around sales. This was a whole lot harder back when we lived in the apartment since we had such little storage I couldn't stock up on meat. Now that we have a house, we have a huge chest freezer and we buy a whole cow. So it is very helpful to have an inventory to track just how much meat we have on hand.
This way I know when we are out of beef roasts, I need to adjust my meals accordingly. I also have an inventory for the pantry and the fridge, to help avoid having 3 open boxes of granola in the pantry.
Next in the binder is a weekly menu calendar. This helps me plan breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snacks for all of us. I use this more than The Good Husband, since I, 1) make TGH's lunches for him and he has yet to complain, and 2) I also make breakfast, lunch and snacks for The Good Daughter and she has only minimally complained.
Next we have a monthly calendar to plan dinners. I like to use this one as a way to avoid having the same protien 3 nights in a row and it allows TGH to see what we are going to eat for the month and make suggestions. Every couple of months I change the layout of the proteins - switch breakfast for seafood, add more meatless dinners, etc.
Finally I have created a weekly shopping list. I have included a space on the left to quickly list all the meals and snacks we will be eating that week followed by spaces for ingredients on the right separated by category. For broad categories, such as pantry, I list each item and in parentheses list the aisle number. And I do know my store well enough to know what is in every aisle. I also like to put a star next to each item I have a coupon for and attach my coupons to the back of my list. But I am just anal like that.
So this is the final chapter of the Brains of the Operation, aka Household Binder. Over time I might add different categories and new templates but I think for now, this is a great foundation.
If you think of anything I should have included, shoot me an email or leave me a comment and I will work to get it created.
You can now get this printable and more in my Etsy Shop!