Meal Planning – Template

As we settle into the Autumn season and look ahead to the holidays, it is the perfect time to begin making plans to save time and money. Meal planning is the perfect way to do both!

Over this past year, my blog has featured recipes and my Podcast (see subscribe links below) currently features a series on meal planning in order to review the basics surrounding one way to make life easier.

Today, I wanted to share a free basic meal plan printable. Click the below link to download, print and begin using!

HAPPY MEAL PLANNING !!!

Download Free Template Here: Meal Planning Template

Podcast Android: https://subscribeonandroid.com/livingeclectic.org/feed/podcast/

Podcast iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/livingeclectic-the-best-combinations-in-life/id1430537576?mt=2

 

 

Small Pantry Organization

Oh The Pantry!

You know that space … where the chef of the home can go to create …and dream and… provide delish meals for the family… That Pantry!

I dream of a large walk in with a place that will hold everyday food items, stockpile supplies, menu plans, cookbooks with recipes, food inventory lists and ample space for large appliance storage!  A girl can dream, right?!

The reality is … I do not have a walk in, nor space to hold everything I want in a single space. But, I do have a very modest pantry with several shallow shelves SO I am able to house a little bit of everything. This also means there are other spaces where I house all needed items in order to maintain my kitchen (that will be a different topic for a different day).

Small Patry Organization

When I moved into my current home, I downsized in all areas to include the kitchen… with that downsize went the walk-in pantry…  So I chose to say “Hello”, to small spaces!

This is an honest pic of my unorganized pantry when I first moved in …

Small Pantry Organization

I quickly found out that the systems I used in my previous pantry (which was a walk in) did not work in my current pantry.

The systems I used before consisted of risers for canned goods and plastic pull out drawers that contained items that I could see easily in my previous space by pulling out the sliding drawer. In my new space the risers did not fit properly (to narrow of a space) and the drawers would not pull out completely. I dealt with it for as long as I could and decided enough is enough – time for a Small Pantry Organization!

I took inventory and decided what the must have items were and what I absolutely HAD to have there… and added on nice to have and this is what I came up with for RULES :

1) Must be functional, above all !

2) I must be able to know at a glance where everything is located.

3) The space must allow other members of the family to put away/get out grocery items without having any difficulty.

4) Visually appealing – This was my nice to have!

I was able to organize with Dollar Tree bins (most of which I already had) and Dollar Tree canisters and containers.

This is what my pantry looks like now – Take A look!

I also filmed 2 YouTube videos – One BEFORE and one AFTER The link to those are below!

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I filmed a short video of my pantry BEFORE :

https://www.youtube.com/embed/Iuv-V9ov2kg” target=”_blank”>

I filmed a short video of my pantry AFTER :

https://www.youtube.com/embed/nM2a7tGxgtU” target=”_blank”>

 

 

Healthy Eats – Lower Cost !

I have heard quite a few people say eating healthy costs more and to some degree this is correct. We have to pay more for organics and other items of interest however; here are a few tips to help you save a buck or two the next time to decide to go to the market!

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Q. How can I purchase inexpensive fruits and vegetables?

A. Browse the discounted produce section of the market 1st, then proceed to the middle isles.

Almost every market I have shopped has a marked down produce section. By going there first you may score part of tonight’s dinner for 50% off or more!

A. Shop off peak hours.

Early morning shoppers get the worm so to speak because the marked down produce from the night before is going to be most abundant at this time. However; I have also scored great deals in the evening hours about 1 to 1 1/2 hrs before closing!

A. Begin to shop the same market(s) frequently and determine how they operate.

By shopping the same market often you will become familiar with when they mark things down, how often and where to look so there will be no time wasted searching for the prize.

One thing I know for sure is one never knows what one will find but one will always find something and save a bundle following the above three tips!               untitled

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