Well, life is all about balance. And sometimes, it gets unbalanced. It’s been a whirl-wind September and I can’t believe it’s October already! School is officially in full swing, my internship is turning out to be my new fitness plan (I seriously need to invest in some Clark clogs or whatever those fancy shoes are the nurses wear! I think my feet would thank me!), my graduate assistantship is allowing me to flex my former conference/event planning muscles, and Oct. is a month of fun visits from friends and family. Whew! So glad to be dog sitting right now (Thanks Tom and Marianne!), while getting ahead on my class work!
One thing that didn’t throw me off-balance this Sept. is my meal planning. I figured out that with my packed week I really only have Friday nights or Sat. mornings open to do my shopping. I started doing meal planning this summer and really cut down my food expenditures (with a gluten-free diet and grad school, my budget is tight!). Well, last month, I experimented with Freezer Meal Friday! Outcome: SUCCESS! I had – and still have – frozen meals ready for lunches or quick dinners. While I do cook dinner a few nights a week – usually pasta or a quick veggie stir fry – this cut down on my expenses and gave me something I needed in buckets – TIME! Though, this month, I’ll approach things a bit differently…
- Frozen meals – seasonings, liquids, meat, veggies, everything! – need de-frosting before the crock pot. My roommates can vouch for this. Many a time I wouldn’t give it enough time and have to chisel the frozen brick of food into the crock pot so I could close the lid. Oops!
- Where’s the flavor?! The beef I had in spades, but freezing seasonings tends to dull them. This time around I will experiment with seasonings by adding a few to the dish when I put it in the crock pot, not when I put it in the freezer.
- Variety. It’s the spice of life. I had all beef meals last month. Good for the protein, but all the seasonings were similar too. This month, I’m switching it up with chicken and using really different spices in each dish.
- Freezer space. Make sure you have enough – or that your containers will fit in small nooks and crannies.