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How To Get Organized - Keeping The Weekly Menu Healthy, and Within Budget

Updated on February 19, 2013
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Organizing:

One thing that always helps when you are trying to have a healthy lifestyle, or trying to stay on a budget, is to get yourself organized. Its an ultimate quest now a days to become organized regardless of where you are, and what you are doing; home, office, business, travel, etc. and we are finding out that not only does that save time, but also saves money in the long run. The more organized you are, the more chances you have to earn more money, or have extra time for something else. "Time is money", as the saying goes....

Some of the main tools for organizing are to-do list, a schedule, monthly calendar, etc., and you can find all kinds of Apps for organizing your life. Organization is an essential part of our daily life. As you would organize yourself at work, so would you at home.

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Tips for planning your Meals:

One of the main things to do at home is eat. We have at least three meals a day, and it just doesn't happen on it's own, it has to be organized. One way you can organize the weekly meal is to use a weekly meal Planner. You can use apps to do your planning, or just a simple planning board that sticks to your refrigerator. I prefer to use a magnetic white planning board, a small one, that stays in front of my eyes, and I can make changes if needed. Be flexible with your menu for the week. Use the planner as a guide; if on certain days you don't have enough time, switch it with an easy meal from another day.

There are two main advantage of having a menu planned for the week, or two.

- Firstly, which I consider to be the most important one for my family, is the healthy aspect.
. You plan a healthy menu and write down the ingredients that you need on your
shopping list.
You can take regular recipes and figure out ahead of time what you need to
change it to a healthy recipe.
You don't have to go to the grocery store and try to decide what you need for
dinner for the next few nights. Saving Time!

- The second aspect is budgeting your expenses.
If you have a menu ahead of time, and you know what your are going to buy, you
will, more likely, not buy random stuff.
You will try not to grab everything that is on sale.
Sticking to your shopping list can save you money and time.

An Important Tip:

Sales at the grocery stores are very tempting. Shoppers usually end up buying more than what they need, or would use. So, KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF!
It also ruins your healthy life style. NOTE: there will be sales of things that you need, and they will be sales on things that are healthy. No problem there if you buy those things on sale that you need.

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How to set up your menu:


My menu planner for the week looks more or less like this, and you can always tailor it according to your need. I always set a extra column to jot down the ingredients that I might need, and don't have it at home. Later I transfer the items to my shopping list. It's also serves as a reminder of what I need that day.

WEEKLY MENU

 
Breakfast
Lunch
Dinner
Items to Get
MONDAY
Granola, yogurt, and blueberry parfait
Tuna Sandwich and celery sticks
Spaghetti sauce with turkey, Side salad
Tomatoes, Pasta, ground turkey, yogurt
TUESDAY
Eggs and English Muffins
Veggie and chicken pockets, V-8
Tuna Burger, kitchen Sink Salad, Whole Wheat rolls
Wheat flour, eggs
WEDNESDAY
Porridge with sliced bananas
Curried Chicken salad with apples and raisins
Oven Fried Fish, baked fries, salad
White fish, bread crumbs, bananas
THURSDAY
Granola cereal, low fat milk, orange juice
Olive, feta, pita bread
Roast Chicken, baked potatoes, steamed green beans
Whole chicken, potatoes, green beans
FRIDAY
Wheat Bread Franch Toast
left over chicken sandwich, salad
Moussaka, Greek Salad, brown pita bread
Ground beef, salad stuff
SATURDAY
Whole Wheat Pancake with Maple Syrup
Left over Greek Salad with tuna
Chicken Chilli, corn bread
ground chicken, kidney beans, flour
SUNDAY
Dad's day to make breakfast
Free Style
Clam Chowder, crackers
 


This is just a sample menu. Usually I don't put so much bread in our daily diet. But you get the idea.
Sundays are usually a 'no hassle' day. Even though DAD makes the breakfast, and lunch is what ever you want to eat, everyone makes food with what is in the house. The key to success is to keep your kitchen stocked with healthy food (Hub in the making!).

Home Made Tuna Burger
Home Made Tuna Burger | Source

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    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Hi Natashalh, good to see you here! I hope this will be useful for you. The tuna burger recipe is in my list of hubs. Look it up sometime.

      Thanks for the comment, see you around!

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      @JD Cross, lol, yes, probably by an ex-programmer :)

      Thanks for stopping by and appreciate your comment. Hope you can use the planner :)

    • Natashalh profile image

      Natasha 

      6 years ago from Hawaii

      I am so terruble at planning my menu! I know I need to improve. A lot. Thanks for the suggestions and ideas (I'd never thought of tuna burgers!)

    • Lord De Cross profile image

      Joseph De Cross 

      6 years ago from New York

      I missed this hub. Probably I was overseas. Great tips and wonderful ideas for staying organized every day and every time. That weekly menu was planned by a programmer... I think !

      Why are you smiling again?

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Hi Beth! We do have those days too, where everyone eats cereal for breakfast..... But we try to keep our Menu Planned for breakfast also, so we don't end up having too many of Cereal days, lol......

      It really helps, specially if you are trying to stay healthy.

      Thanks for stopping by, and the votes :)

    • Bethaleg profile image

      Bethaleg 

      6 years ago from Minnesota

      I enjoyed this hub on organizing, and plan on trying your meal planner idea. My biggest problem is not planning breakfast...it usually consists of stumbling out of bed and saying, "Cereal, anyone?" I like the idea of using a set up like yours that lets you list the ingredients you need...that is a biggy for me. Voted up as useful : )

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thank you for your wonderful comment. Glad it will help you. Yes, my white board is for everyone to see..... Sometimes my children will give suggestions and it's good for them to know what they are having ahead of time. We don't hear, 'not that again!', or 'what is that?', lol. They prepare themselves, no surprises....... :)

    • profile image

      Giselle Maine 

      6 years ago

      Great hub! I especially liked your actual examples of a weekly meal planner. I obtained some great ideas that I can apply to my meal planning for my family. Thanks for a super-fantastic hub.

      By the way - does your whiteboard set-up mean that your family sees the weekly menu ahead of time, and is that good or bad?

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      I usually plan everything, but we do make changes if needed. And that happens more often, like you said, with what we have. Planning ahead actually helps with the budget. You are at a good start.

    • profile image

      mefajf07300302 

      6 years ago

      I hope so but I am willing to give it a shot and hope it helps us out! Our dinners are always planned but as for the rest of the meals its pretty much whatever you can find thats whats for breakfast and lunch! And we always shop on a budget (kind of have to this day in age) so that part we have down!

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thanks for stopping by. For us, it took several trial before making it into a habit. Now it comes naturally. Hope it benefits you too. Appreciate your comment. :)

    • profile image

      mefajf07300302 

      6 years ago

      Thanks for the hub! I am going to use this system, we had something like this but we always had a difficult time actually sticking to it!

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      lol, you are right, Angela, I have to be on top of the game! ;)

      Thanks for stopping by, and your comment. Appreciate it!

    • Angela Brummer profile image

      Angela Brummer 

      6 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

      Great contribution! Thank you! Planning ahead sames alot money and time! I am certain you could not care for six children if you weren't the master of this! :)

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Haven't we all made that mistake after leaving home!? You won't believe what I lived on..... Snicker bars for lunch.... Too busy to go to the cafeteria! Ugh!

      Thanks for your comment, and your visit :)

    • WD Curry 111 profile image

      WD Curry 111 

      6 years ago from Space Coast

      Where were you when I first left home and went off to school? This is truly useful. You made me hungry.

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thank your for your comment, and visit.... Those tuna Burgers are very tasty, also :)

      I am preparing a hub for it soon. Hope to see you around.....

    • rebeccamealey profile image

      Rebecca Mealey 

      6 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

      Great tips for organizing meals! And those tuna burgers look so good, and healthy!

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      lol, lol, you always make me laugh! Well, at least it's keeping you busy! Well, I never stick to the menu completely, I change it as I go if I need to. I do that with all my TO-DO lists. I don't believe in being rigid about these things, you have to be flexible otherwise you will make your life very hard.

      These are guidelines which keeps you in track, and not loose time.

      Thanks for visiting.... :)

    • BeyondMax profile image

      BeyondMax 

      6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      I always enjoy your pictures, they speak for themselves =) You are very organized, I have to admit that with a common ADD it's a tough job to keep "hands off", you know... Even if I tried to write a menu (great idea btw!) it ain't gonna happen, can't pin myself down and not step outside just for the sake of it =) If you are wondering if I made Moussaka yet - I was half through with it - printed the recipe, went to the shops for the ingredients and put two shop assistants in stupor with cumin and turmeric (at least I was not alone not knowing what's that supposed to mean and no, that's not some cussing words, bad kitty, bad!) so I had to get back home and research internet on that subject LOL So, had to postpone with that for some time but I'm not letting it go =)

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Thanks pop for your comment, and for visiting us. See you soon....

    • breakfastpop profile image

      breakfastpop 

      6 years ago

      Very smart and useful advice. It takes practice to be this organized but it is so rewarding. Up and useful!

    • LaThing profile imageAUTHOR

      LaThing 

      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Very good suggestion, Hydenz, taking everyone's input would get everyone involved. Thanks for visiting my hub, and I see you are new to hubpages. Welcome, hope you have a great time here. :)

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