Okay, I’m a space cadet.  I got on the computer today to publish Lois’s post (a day late, oops) when I realized that some of my posts were still unpublished. 

Yes, that’s right.  Being the genius that I am, I clicked “Save Draft” instead of “Publish”.

I’ll publish the other ones later this week, but I had to share the following post as it was written.  Pretend it was published on December 3.

PLANNING FOR BUSY-NESS

Yesterday I wrote about the drain being busy can have on my Christmas season.  Each year, I try a little harder to divide my tasks and plan better so I don’t end up overwhelmed and yelling at my family to hurry up.

This year, I tried something completely unexpected. I made a menu of daily dinners for the rest of the year.  I know!  Crazy huh.

I actually sat down with my calendar the week before Thanksgiving when I needed to go grocery shopping.  I was planning my weekly menu and writing the grocery list.  (My holiday mood must be improving, I nearly wrote “wish list”.) 

I was already having to schedule which days we’d be away in November, so I continued through December writing the days we’d be visiting and entertaining.  Then I began the menu.  Only three days at home that first week.

So I kept going.  Then I realized, this would make my life a lot easier if I go on through the rest of the year.  And for me, December is the easiest month to plan dinners for because you can always flip the calendar back through the last eleven months and see what else you’ve made.  (This only works if you’ve been doing this all year, of course.)

Here’s the round up.  No repeating.  You’ll notice there are not 29 days worth. Remember some days I won’t be cooking and I always schedule in one or two days for leftovers or emergency drive-thru.

Home-made burgers
Chicken Nuggets, Macaroni-n-cheese, green beans
Chicken and Wild Rice Soup
Lasagna, Salad, bread
Tony Cachere’s Chicken, fried potatoes, salad
Ginger-Garlic Chicken, Rice, Peas
Italian Bean and Sausage Soup
Taquitos and Guacamole
Parmesan Chicken, Pasta and salad or zucchini
Hamburger Steak, potatoes, Green Beans
Breakfast
Fried Porkchops, Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli
Meatballs, noodles
Spaghetti
Seared Salmon, Orange Green Beans, rice
Steak Tacos
Lemon-Dill Chicken
Black-Eyed Peas, Cornbread, Sausage

See, I do know how to cook more than just fried eggs. Seeing them all typed up like that, I’m thinking of all kinds of stories I could tell you. About breakfast, or steak tacos, or fried porkchops, or black-eyed peas.

Y’know, that’s what I really love about food–the stories. Well, that and it tastes good. Some recipes and food traditions get passed down and around in families well beyond what other traditions and stories would. I may not remember very many stories about my great-grandmother, but I remember her grilled sandwiches. And I enjoy her gravy and her dressing everytime my mother cooks them.

I can’t wait to share some of these stories, and recipes, with you.

Take some time before you get too busy to think about how you can simplify the everyday things that can become overwhelming at the busy time of year.

Before I go, I have a message for the first man I ever loved.

Happy Birthday, Daddy. I hope it’s a good one.

PS.  Daddy, sorry your birthday wishes were late.  And, thanks for reading my blog.

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