one of my spiritual gifts is NOT discipline. for a complete list of "not my spiritual gifts" see...a book about positive traits in highly functional people.
i do have a few spiritual gifts. my favorites are photo captioning and the ability to pick the awesomest thing off of any restaurant menu. go ahead and order that burrito, but i'm telling you, you WILL want my short rib tacos when the food arrives (you know who you are).
but i digress (oh! digression. another gift! i am putting all KINDS of positive-thinking lipstick on the pig that is my scattered brain).
so like i was saying 10 minutes ago, i am bad at discipline. particularly when it comes to food. i actually really enjoy cooking, but since i am not disciplined enough to plan ahead, buy the groceries and store them (in a manner that does NOT involve me finding unopened old yogurt in the trunk of my car 2 months after i brought it home and forgot to unload it), we often are left to scrounge.
this means that most nights jesse and i sit around in denial that we are actually hungry. we make the kids their meals as we get progressively hungrier. it's like, if we wait long enough and dont consciously address the issue, surely one of our parents will show up with a hot, well balanced dinner for us.
whatever you do, dont acknowledge the hunger. it will only lead to shame and frustration that all you have on hand is uncrustables (which i would gladly eat 5 of daily if not for that damned 1 hour thawing time), goldfish and delicious-looking hamburger helper boxes (which we cant make because WE DONT OWN HAMBURGER).
so we ignore it. and then, all of a sudden, the hunger is on my back, clawing at me like a feral lynx in heat. it usually manifests with a barely-suppressible urge to punch jesse dukes in the face for something as trivial as: wearing a flaccid-necked t-shirt, letting the bottom of his shoes touch ANY fiber of upholstery or bed linen in our home, or, god forbid, throwing an enclosed container into the sink (where it will sit for 3 days until i finally do the dishes, wherein, in a fit of domestic hubris, i will be flying through my chore and will endeavor to forcefully and ever so efficiently take the top of a sippy cup off, and will instead end up splashing curdled milk or mystery leftovers into my face, and most likely, my open mouth. cataclysm will ensue).
i deny the boiling hot punch-instinct and cast it away into its happy place: a veritable pandora's box where all of my unpunched punches, unhurled invective, and unrammed idiot drivers are kept. in a inaccessible and forgotten corner of my brain, this pulsing cube of repressed animal instinct pulses and waits; deactivated, but hungry. if science could harness the kilo-joules of potential energy contained in this nugget of pure rage-energy, we would have clean-burning fuel for all of mankind. i was a little afraid that when the castaways on LOST were poking around at the hatch that they had found the secret backdoor to this cache of destruction. dont worry, world, you are totally safe from my primal urges. as long as desmond keeps entering that code.
but we still need to eat. and it's no longer ignorable. we have now reached the event horizon where i know that, "if i dont have a zaxby's chicken finger in my mouth in 40 seconds, i am actually going to die." so this idyll of family life often concludes with a mad dash to some fast food place nearby.
case in point, this week week our dinner menu looked like this:
monday-roly poly picked up by jesse on his way home after my SOS text.
tuesday-chinese take-out, picked up by jesse after his guitar lessons went long and i was losing it at home.
wednesday- chinese take-out AGAIN because they messed up our order the night before and i wanted them to MAKE IT RIGHT. except the language barrier prevented this lesson in customer service, so we just paid them again.
thursday-mcdonald's on the way home because, shit, i NEED this.
so in an effort to NOT die of a diabetic heart-a-stroke at age 30, i decided enough was enough. so i sat down and menu planned for all of next week.
i got out my coupons, my publix flyer and my pinterest. i recently divided my food board up into several different boards for main dishes, sides, dessert and breakfast. so i just went on there and picked out some good-looking candidates and old favorites. it took all of 5 drooly minutes to select all 4 dinners for next week (friday night the kids are with my folks and its a giftcard date night!) and the leftovers will constitute many lunches for us as well since these recipes are for 4 adults.
i made up my shopping list and tweeted and instagrammed the mess out of that pic. hello, world! i am getting my life together!
if you want a better life, you need to be writing with these pens all the time. and 15 bonus stars to me for lining up my post-it lines with my legal pad lines unintentionally.
i know what you're thinking, the lady who cant pull it together enough to unscrew a sippy cup without baptizing herself in the unholy fount of spoiled chocolate milk and anger-lava is going to try to cook real food nightly? without the aid of a sidearm or a bottle of vodka?
yes, i am. i realize that this isnt anything to most humans. from what i hear, most moms cook dinner most nights of the week, even if they work outside of the home. if that is you, kudos. now please put down my thunder and step away from me. we dont even have a dinner table, so let's lower the ol' bar for keighty, eh?
i also realize that going from eating out every night of the week to cooking every night might be a tad extreme. hi, have you met me? i'm keight and i live in the extremes. i am working on improving that. but until then, i'd rather live in the extreme that has me ingesting green food and having regular bowel movements than the one where the doctor tries to draw my blood and all that comes out is MSG, processed cheese food and regret. can i get an amen?
so i will do this next week. i menu planned and shopped on the same day, so all the prep is done. now it's just opening the fridge, putting up the baby gate and getting to work BEFORE the starving hunger lynx crawls up my spine to take over the world. i picked easy but really delicious recipes that either jesse or i can do and which called for a lot of ingredients that i already had on hand (because mama is NOT paying $5 for a "pinch" of saffron, ina).
i hope this goes well. our habit is to go on kicks and then fall off the wagon, but maybe somehow one or two nights a week will hang on and become routine. otherwise, i fully expect bob harper to come rappelling through my sunroof during my next routine visit to the krystal drive through.
does anyone else SUCK at this planning ahead stuff? am i like a 67 inch tall human baby for making this little thing a "goal?" is anyone else a slave to takeout? anybody want to do this with me?
i will try to post reviews and pics of each of the recipes. but i know that even the new ones are going to be good. because, hello? i picked them, and i am spiritually equipped to pick food that i will love.