Wednesday, June 6, 2012

[Project Dinner] Menu Planners

We are officially on summer break!

Moments after school let out last week, we headed for the hills.  Getting there was quite the adventure, but once we were there, life was pure bliss.  We spent five days in the embrace of our super awesome family cabin.  We played games and watched movies and went on hikes and read books.  Puzzles...did I mention puzzles?  We put together a crazy make-your-eyes-go-crossed puzzle that took almost two entire days.  We definitely ate far too many sweets.  Now we are back home and it is time to crack the whip, so to speak.  I have been working today on our summer calendar and job charts.  One of the things that I really want to focus on this summer is getting my older kids more involved in planning and preparing dinner for the family.  They are very good cooks.  Especially when it comes to desserts.  And they each help with dinner preparations quite regularly. You know, a salad here...mashed potatoes there, maybe steak or chicken on the BBQ.   But I am ready to turn over the reins.  I want them to find some recipes that they are interested in learning to make and prepare the entire meal from start to finish. 
So, my son will be cooking dinner on Tuesday nights and my daughter will be cooking on Wednesdays.  I bribed them with the knowledge that the cook will not have to do the dishes.  I am excited to see how they do.   I made this simple menu planner to help steer them in the right direction.  My hope is that they will think about it a little ahead of time and not resort to hot dogs and macaroni and cheese every time.  More than that, I am looking forward to some well balanced meals with multiple food groups represented.  Maybe they will learn a few new skills?  We shall see.

I thought maybe your kids would like to join us for the dinner challenge.  I'd love to hear what menus they come up with.  Enjoy this free download.  Hopefully it will make things a bit easier...and it looks cute on the fridge!


  1. This really is a great idea and is so helpful not only to us, but also to our kids as they grow up. I have five kids (only one left at home now, woo hoo!) and when they were all at home, I felt like I was having to repeat what was for dinner sometimes five times a day, lol. So, I too started this plan. I encouraged my kids to come up with dinner menu's for a particular day. From their menu's I sat down with them and we prepared our weekly shopping list based on what was needed and when. I then showed them how to incorporate the coupons based on that grocery list. I combined the menu information onto a calendar which I put on the refrigerator. It made life so much easier. I also gave them the responsibility for laying out any frozen foods that needed thawed that day according to the menu calendar. They are now doing this at their own homes even as young as they still are. I couldn't be more proud:)

    1. Thanks for your comment! It sure has been helpful for us. And it has been so wonderful to see my children become more confident in the kitchen. Maybe they won't starve when they go off to college after all?


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