grocery-aisleOn Thursday, local news and weather pundits were warning of a weekend snow storm. A Winter Storm Warning was issued with 8-11 inches of snowfall predicted. Even in Michigan, 8 inches is a heck of a lot of snow. On Friday night, I hatched a plan to do some late evening grocery shopping and hunker down for the weekend.

James accompanied me to the grocery store, where I immediately delegated the cart pushing duty to him. Normally, I grocery shop alone, so I am left to manuver the cart. Unrestricted by cart duty, however, I found myself meandering and weaving though foot traffic, looking for inspiration and goodies on sale.

Apparently, when I am not tethered to a cart, I roam like a bison. James had an increasingly difficult time keeping up with my wandering. He eventually gave up and stayed in place while I fetched items and returned to the cart. It began to occur to me that this erratic shopping style was leading to a strange combination of items in the cart: beef strips for stir-fry, quick-cook barley, asparagus, fresh rosemary, and pickles to name a few.

Now, maybe there is a delicious recipe out there for beef stir-fry with barley and asparagus with a side of rosemary pickles, but I doubt it. I attempted to seize this opportunity and added items to the cart to make full meals: goat cheese for pasta with asparagus, vegetables and saffron rice for stir-fry, green beans for vegetable soup with barley, turnips and apples for roasted vegetables with rosemary. Other items made their way into the cart as well: chicken, wild rice, and red onions for baked chicken and wild rice pilaf. When I got home, however, there were already two jars of pickles waiting.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is exactly why you should never go grocery shopping without a list. Random grocery shopping will usually lead to extra trips to the store for missing or forgotten items. I usually excel at individual meal planning, but when it comes to planning for the entire week it’s a little hit-or-miss. Meal planning is definitely an art, one of which I am yet to master. If you too struggle with meal planning, here are a few Sweet sites to check out:

7 Secrets to Easy Meal Planning

Healthy Meal Planning Made Simple

Everyday Meal Planning

50 Tips for Grocery Shopping

Creating a Weekly Meal Plan

One Response to “Bitter/Sweet: the Art of Meal Planning”

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