Time is of the essence when you have a baby! It’s even more invaluable when you have two babies!!
My biggest struggle for the first few months after having my twins was finding time to get things done around the house, not to mention time for cooking.
However, we were fortunate enough to have such amazing women from our church bring us meals for the first month and a half! But, that time flew by so rapidly, I remember thinking to myself what am I going to do now?!
I tried cooking during the day, but it never worked out due to all the breaks I ended up taking to care for my babies. Cooking at night wasn’t an option either since we weren’t too keen on eating supper at midnight!
I was beginning to get discouraged that I will never find time to make homemade meals!
We couldn’t afford to get takeout every single night, and I didn’t like the idea of eating processed foods for who knows how long….
So, I started experimenting and eventually found a solution!
It seriously has changed our lifestyle, and we have nutritious homemade meals every day now!
Here is what I do:
1.) Write out a Menu for the Whole Week
Being organized is the key to success!
I usually write out my menu for the whole week on Sunday evenings. This is also the time that I take inventory of what we have and what we need. Then, I make my grocery list for the upcoming week.
In this season of life, I try to limit my meals to quick and easy dishes as well as one pot dinners. Also, whenever I cook, I make sure to make enough to have leftovers or better yet freeze the extras for a ready grab and go meal. By doing this, I only have to cook every other day!
2.) Go to the Grocery store once a week
I make my grocery runs once a week and buy everything we need for the whole week. Not only does this save time but also saves money. You see, if I go to the store multiple times a week, I usually spend way more than I intend to.
I like to make my grocery runs on Tuesday mornings. I feel like there are fewer people in the store that day.
3.) Prep Everything you possibly can the night before
First, I make sure I thoroughly read all of the directions on a recipe that I will be making. By doing this, I prevent any unforeseen circumstances.
For example, yesterday I made One Pot Chicken and Rice and the recipe called for hot chicken broth. Since I read the recipe ahead of time, I made sure to heat my broth before starting to cook.
I do all the prep work such as peeling and cutting all of my vegetables the night before, and this saves so much time the next day!
***Tip: Peel your potatoes the night before but make sure to leave them completely submerged in water this will prevent the oxidation process.
I also get all of the cookware, measuring cups, and other ingredients that don’t need to be refrigerated and leave everything on my countertop.
You see, I try to figure out what is the maximum amount of things that I can get done ahead of time to speed up my cooking process for the next day. There are even times when I get ahead start on a recipe and end up doing some parts of the recipie the night before (of course only if the recipe permits it).
4.) Cook while kids are napping
(I can spend the whole day watching them sleep!)
I know everyone says to nap while baby(ies) is/are napping but when are you supposed to get anything done?!
Thankfully, my babies are good nappers, and I can sacrifice one of their naps to get things done around the house.
So, as soon as, I put my kids down for their first nap, I start cooking our meal. Since I did all the prep work ahead of time, my dish comes together super quickly and I usually finish before my kids wake up.
I use the time to clean up any mess that I make while cooking and also load the dishwasher.
By the time my kids wake up, I have dinner ready and my house is clean! Oh and I feel extremely satisfied with my accomplishments, which is a huge bonus! 🙂
Every person has a different personality and lifestyle, so my method may not work for you, or maybe you will give it a try, and it will become your new routine!
What are some of your tips and tricks to get meals on the table?