NIPs and Fudge-inas

Last night at the dinner table it was just Sheepdog, Kid C, Kid D, Kid E, and me.  The Olympics may be over, but… Let the Games Begin!  School, sports and activities are already in full swing.  Kid A was at ballet and Kid B was at soccer.  I was excited because it was the first test of the effectiveness and executability of my New and Improved Plan (NIP) to address school night meals that get all screwed up by the craziness.  Mine and the world’s in general, but mostly mine.

This year I am going to feed them all homemade (well, made in my home), healthy meals during the week!

This year no one will come home from a practice and have to eat a bowl of cereal or a Happy Meal because I forgot to save them dinner!

This year I will plan ahead!  This year I will have all the ingredients I need on hand!  This year I will take things out of the freezer in time for them to thaw!

I get so excited about the lamest things!

Let me explain this NIP… the beauty is in its simplicity.  On Sunday morning I print out a schedule for the upcoming week.  The family collaborated on a list of favorite meals, which I keep pinned to my bulletin board.  On the schedule I write down specific meals from the list for each night, Sunday through Thursday (and maybe even Friday if I’m feeling especially ambitious, but Saturday is my night off, bitches).  From that schedule I then create a grocery list of standard and meal-specific things I will need to prepare meals for the whole week.  Then I go to the store and start checking things off the list.  When I get back from the store, I post the schedule on a bulletin board inside my pantry (because I will most likely forget what I planned to make and when), where I will see it every morning and remember to take out or prepare what I need for that day.

With this kind of organization and service of regular, healthy meals, I can even get away with occasionally (or always) using cheaters and shortcut ingredients like organic frozen vegetables, prepared sauces and marinades, or meatballs not made from scratch.

My Slice-O-Matic sat, unused, in its original box for like 10 years until I finally sold it for 50 cents at a yard sale.

Last night during dinner I was patting myself on the back in reference to my NIP awesomeness.  Then Kid D rained on my parade by announcing that he would not be able to eat the “sweet potatoes” (which he hates) on his stir fry plate.  I clarified that they were actually carrots (which he loves) and he should gobble them right up.  He presumed I was lying to get him to eat something good for him, but I swore a courtroom promise.   Kid D still wasn’t convinced, so Sheepdog explained that their unfamiliar shape was due to the carrots being cut up julienne – style.  And while I embraced the parental back-up and the notion of a man who knows his way around the kitchen (or at least the Food Network), I immediately shot Sheepdog a look that silently implied, “Why do you even know that word and did you have to trade away your man parts when you were given such information?”

Kid D just said, “Well, that puts the fudge in fudge-ina!” as he finished his dinner.  I don’t really know what that means, or even if I should punish you for saying it, but I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Wish me luck for tomorrow…

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