Meal Planning

My parents are coming and it’s always a struggle for me to fix meals for them that are really good — things mom doesn’t fix at home, but yet things they will like.  My dad is a kind of meat and potatoes type guy and neither of them will eat anything too spicy or “weird”.  I’ve spent the whole morning, while waiting for the Dish Network man to get here, working on the menu for while my parents are here.  Here’s what I’ve come up with.

My plan was to get to the store this morning and buy the things needed to get us through Monday. The only fridge here is the smaller basement fridge and it doesn’t hold a heck of a lot so I’ve had to plan meals that we’ll mostly eat and not have leftovers.

The main reason I had wanted to go to the store is I wanted to make this for dinner tonight.  But it has to cook for at least 4 hours and since it’s after 1 p.m. already and the Dish guy is still here and he was supposed to be here between 8 and 12 so I waited all morning and he got here at 12:15 and probably won’t be done til at least 2, I’m not going to have time to go to the store and get this done for dinner tonight.  Tomorrow . . there’s always tomorrow night, right?


  1. 2


    You slay me Judy! I rarely give more than 15 minutes of consideration for a meal, much less plan out a menu for a week! OMG the thought of sticking to a “plan” for an entire week… gasp! I’m already losing sleep! :)~~~

    • 2.1


      And I would lose sleep if I didn’t have my plan all done for at least a week in advance. And if anyone wants to deviate from the plan? No way!! 🙂

  2. 3


    Oh my!!! That menu rocks!!! Tom and I can pretend to be “the Folks” any time (your convenience)! Course the only big difference is: we eat anything that won’t eat us first!!!! Food prep. seems like it might be a bit, though!?! Doreen

  3. 4

    Linda in NE says

    It all sounds good to me. Enjoy your folks’ visit and don’t worry so much about food. I’m sure they’ll be happy with whatever you fix and if they aren’t have some stuff on hand so they can fix themselves a sandwich or plain burger or chicken breast or something. You can plan menus and come cook for me any time. 🙂

  4. 6

    Gwen says

    That menu is wonderful! The Carnitas sound great too. Your folks might like them too. Just adjust the heat and call the polenta grits!

  5. 8


    After all, tomorrow is another day! ;p I love reading your menus Judy and really like that you provide some links so we can see the recipes. I’m trying to get creative so I can make more normal foods that I can actually eat, and you’re giving me some inspiration.

  6. 9


    Can I come and stay? You are so incredibly organized! Your parents must love visiting you! The menu is incredible. I hope you can come up with something different since the Dish man has you off schedule.

  7. 11

    Marilyn Smith says

    I saw this recipe this morning on PW and printed it off. Sure sounds yummy. Your meal plan looks terrific. I try to plan ahead but plans do change from time to time.

  8. 12

    Diana in TX says

    Those carnitas do sound good. Will try them. When Galen’s parents would come a visit it was always hard to figure meals. Pretty much meat and potatoes. I think the first time we put steaks on the grill she couldn’t believe they were done that quickly. she put her steak in the frying pan on the wood stove and simmer it the whole time they were at church. Same with chicken. In her way she was a good cook, but there was nothing adventurous in what she fixed.

  9. 13

    Kathy says

    Hey Judy,
    I LOVE your blog!! Question: How do you store recipes that you find on various blogs and other online sources? Just wonderin’…

    • 13.1


      Now that I’m using Pinterest, I will store them there but I can also import them into my iPad using the Paprika app.

  10. 14

    Claudia Wade says

    Judy – I notice you have General Tso’s chicken on your meal plan for when your parents are there. Do you have a good recipe for that? I looooove General Tso’s but only get it from my local Chinese takeout place. I would love a good recipe for it, if you have one. Thanks, Claudia W