I sit here sipping on a cup of iced coffee after eating two leftover Asiago pinwheel sausage, corn, and black bean tacos after I propped up the sagging raspberry plants, I face my weekly conundrum as I stare at the weekly menu spreadsheet: what the hell are we going to eat next week?
But as you read this, I’m likely already at Trader Joe’s getting our shopping done and looking for the Husky so Graham can get his lollipop. (I wrote this yesterday at nap time)
Now that I’m an at-home dad again, Friday is the day the three of us trek (it’s only 25 minutes) to West Hartford to get 90% of our grocery shopping done at Trader Joe’s. There’s a Stop & Shop and a Price Chopper 10 and 11 minutes from home, respectively, but we just feel like we get the best bang for our buck at Trader Joe’s. And with a tight budget, that’s a huge deal.
I’ve got a spreadsheet of what I need to get which helps me navigate a little easier throughout the store, but there’s always something(s) I forget to add. Like I said, 90% is done at Trader Joe’s and the other 10% at Stop & Shop.
But why the hell is it so difficult, with all the millions of Pinterest recipes out there, to come up with new ideas for dinners that we can all enjoy? Unlike some of you out there, I tend to have backup meals for the kids in case they don’t eat what we eat. I’m not gonna make them eat panzarella (which was pretty damn good this Monday)
Meatless Monday? Taco Tuesday? Cheesy Wednesday (is that even a thing)?
All we have in order is Friday. It’s Pizza Night, a night I know everyone will eat what I cook. (Pasta is another safe bet but I can’t stand plain old pasta and sauce with a side salad and/or garlic bread.)
So what’s on my list, you ask?
The staples include: pizza dough, shredded mozzarella, pizza sauce, an assortment of fruits, milk, cold cereal, oatmeal, various vegetables, corn, black beans, bread.
With Monday night now consisting of gymnastics class from 5:30 to 6:30, we might go from Meatless Monday to Slow-Cooker Monday. But what? What am I going to slow cook?
This week’s menu included panzarella, pizza, guacamole with black bean and corn tacos (the kids had fish nuggets, carrots, and strawberries), hot dogs with tater tots/sweet potato wedges and corn on the cob, and cinnamon sweet potato and rice bowl with black beans and corn.
It’s like the same shit over and over. And over. The kids don’t care how many times they eat the same things: pizza, mac and cheese, pasta with sides of fruit, tater tots, or carrots.
I am sick of seeing the same shitty Pinterest Paleo recipes or the “easy” ones that require a fistful of ingredients that I won’t repurpose in another meal.
Well, before the little dudes wake up and Nolan arrives, I better get back to the menu. Or stare at it until something miraculously appears.