A Month of Dinners: Menu Plan for September

Make your month a little easier by planning all your meals at once.


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Over the past few weeks, I've been trying really hard to maximize the time I have when Caroline is napping. Each day, I pick a handful of tasks from my larger to-do list that I'd like to accomplish -- I call the shorter list my "Daily Five" -- and try and complete those things before I tackle anything else.

To prevent myself from feeling overwhelmed, when I can, I make sure that the items on my "Daily Five" don't all fall under the same category (e.g. Housework and Errands). Here's an example:

  1. Do laundry
  2. Organize menu plan for September
  3. Prep ingredients for dinner
  4. Make student loan payment
  5. Edit photos for blog post

Since I typically do a few loads of laundry per week, that's a task that can take several hours to do from start to finish. That means I can do that while doing something else, like handing off the baby monitor to Stephen so I can run a quick errand or tackling a photo-editing project so I have the images I need when I actually find the time to write a new blog post.

I've also found that using the time while Caroline naps to prep ingredients for that night's dinner (or even the next night's) has been really helpful. That gives me time to clean up after myself (leaving Stephen fewer dishes to clean up after we're done eating) and makes the idea of cooking meals less exhausting.

And, somehow, knowing that I can find time to cook healthy meals from scratch with a baby in the house makes the task of planning our meals seem more like fun rather than like work. Especially now that I've started planning a month's worth of dinners all at once.

While I didn't stick to the original plan for August, it was super easy to shift things around to accommodate Stephen's last-minute work trips and unexpected visits from family. Here's hoping September goes as smoothly!

Menu Plan for September

Now, without further ado, here's our menu plan for the month!

Week 1: September 1 - 5

Tuesday: Leftovers
Wednesday: Stephen's Choice
Thursday: Quick & Easy Stove Top Mac & Cheese (from PBS) with Steamed Broccoli
FridayPizza with Sausage, Manchego, and Peppers (from Cooking Light)
Saturday: Chopped Turkey and Gravy over Mashed Potatoes with Corn

Week 2: September 6 - 12

Sunday: Slow Cooker French Dip Sandwiches (from All You)
Monday: Slow Cooker Mexican Quinoa (from Chelsea's Messy Apron)
Tuesday: Leftovers
Wednesday: Stephen's Choice
Thursday: Creamy Parmesan Pasta with Peas and Bacon
Friday: Pizza with Roasted Eggplant, Grape Tomatoes, Garlic, and Fresh Mozzarella (from The Pioneer Woman)
Saturday: Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken (from Just A Taste) with Brown Rice and Steamed Broccoli

Week 3: September 13 - 19

Sunday: Three Bean Chili with Homemade Chili Seasoning
Monday: Panko-Crusted Salmon with Asparagus-Parmesan Couscous (from Cooking Light)
Tuesday: Leftovers
Wednesday: Stephen's Choice
Thursday: Brussels Sprouts with Sausage and Cumin (from Food & Wine) and Roasted New Potatoes
Friday: Pizza with Broccoli, Mushrooms, and Caramelized Onions
Saturday: Take-Out

Week 4: September 20 - 26

Sunday: Roast Chicken with Corn Brûlée (from Lehigh Valley Style) and Wilted Spinach with Garlic and Olive Oil
Monday: Spinach and Quinoa Salad with Shrimp (from Cooking Light)
Tuesday: Ground Beef Tacos with Homemade Taco Seasoning
Wednesday: Stephen's Choice
Thursday: Italian Sausage and White Bean Stew
Friday: Pizza with Spinach and Ricotta
Saturday: Leftovers

Week 5: September 27 - 30

Sunday: Spaghetti and Meatballs with Marinara Sauce
Monday: Mexican Stuffed Peppers (from Claire's Corner Copia Cookbook -- recipe coming soon to Taste As You Go!)
Tuesday: Herb-Crusted Pork Cutlets (from PureWow) with Mixed Green Salad and Grape Tomatoes
Wednesday: Stephen's Choice

Do you plan your meals? What's on your Menu Plan for this week/month? Let me know in the comments!


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