Monday, December 2, 2013

Meal Planning & Organizing for a Busy Working Mom

Yes, I have to admit, working outside the home has some benefits and drawbacks.

The benefit is, I get out of the house, and I get paid for it. The drawback is, I have to do everything I'd have to do for my family but in a shorter, MUCH shorter period of time. And when you throw homeschooling in there, you have the recipe for a hot mess!

Time seems to slip through my fingers. secret weapon is...organization.


Oh, back in the day when I had a much smaller family and my husband worked from home, we didn't have much of a need for large dinners. We ate badly also. Now with my Hubs and I getting older, we have to eat better.

Here's my rundown of how to have dinner prepared for your family when you have little time to prepare it.

1) Buy meats in bulk.
2) Buy frozen veggies
3) Season bulk meat, separate into portions that satisfy your family size, place those season pieces in plastic freezer bags. If you want to get fancy you can lable the days on the bags.
4) Place a small frozen bag of veggies, peppers, seasonings, even your rice or potato wedges in the bags.
5) Sunday nights take out the bags for the days of the week you plan on making dinner. Put them in the freezer to thaw.
6) For Monday night dinner, make enough on Sunday night dinner to have leftovers.
7) Tue, Wed & Thursday, either cook the contents of your dinner bags (packed with seasoned meats, rice or potato mixes, peppers and veggies) in either a crockpot (place in there in the am), an oven or on top of the stove. *Note* if you want a marinade make sure you place it in the bag with the meat either as you are freezing it or thawing it.

Viola' you look like an amazing mom with dinner on the table after a hard day of work, but with very little effort.


Well this is the one place where I get a little less type 'A' because I just can't go stir crazy over it. But the kids have a chore chart. They follow it ... most times. Must do's are all the rooms on the first floor. So when I first come home or if someone pops over, the house isn't a complete mess.

- Clean common areas daily. Assign a kid or even dad the kitchen every night.
- Have a hiding spot for excess clothes and other items
- Do a full family cleaning day/morning on Saturdays where you take the clothes, items etc out of teh hiding place for excess, deep clean bathrooms, and bedrooms.


Yeah, well dinner's on the table, now we are talking about school. As a working mom, I realized I had to keep things simple for me and the kids. Gosh I'd love to sit down and create these elaborate educational plans for my kids, but I don't have the time.

School work - Find programs that are interactive, require little administering by teacher, but allows teacher control of the materials. This year we used a boxed set. It's working out wonderfully for us, although I've seen many rants about it online, it fit our home perfectly. And where I adjusted I've gotten similar tools that were computer based.

Work boxes - Yes, they work for older students. I love the Workbox system by Sue Patrick. It even works with my 7th grader (soon to be skipped to 9th grade work next year).

Efficient - Timers are the answer. I time the kids breaks and homework time. It keeps us on track and now we have less time sucking up with overly long breaks and long work days.



  1. I always clean the kitchen as I go....and each person is responsible for cleaning the bathroom before they leave it. It helps some. I am new to Tuesday Lists!

  2. The meal planning is where I fail! I like the idea of cooking. Part of me really hates my kitchen but that is no excuse. I am wanting to try once a month grocery shopping and meal planning. Time is short in my house too!

  3. I love meal planning tips that use the freezer! Sometimes I also do this for breakfast just to make my morning go more quickly. I'll make a big batch of pancakes on Sunday, and freeze portions for the week, or I'll put fruit that is right on the edge of turning into freezer bags with a few other smoothie ingredients and BAM instant breakfast!

    1. It saves me so much time and I like having the kids responsible for making meals to teach them the skill.