It's that time of the year; baseball season. Some people love it. Others loathe it. Me, I'm somewhere in the middle. Why? Well, it's simple actually. Baseball season means several weeknights spent at the ball park, directly after work, during which time I'm sitting on the bleachers wondering how I'm going to get the kids fed, bathed, and homework checked by their 8:30 bed time. Don't get me wrong, I love watching my kids out on the field, having fun and learning about being a team player, but it can be challenging to stick to a food budget when stopping at Subway on practice nights seems more appealing than whipping up a meal at 7:30. Just the other day, while on my lunch break, I found myself thinking I needed to stop at the bank and grab some cash, so we could get Subway after practice. What makes this bad? I'd already spent my family's designated weekly grocery budget the day before. Simply put, I was being lazy and ignoring my well thought out meal plans. Even worse, my kids knew I was taking the easy way out, and I didn't want them to think that's acceptable behavior.
So, what's a working mom to do? Go back to the drawing board and re-examine the meal plan. Obviously practice nights aren't good evenings to make stuffed peppers, but they are a good night to have that left over spaghetti, or make chicken quesadillas. Better yet? Take a picnic dinner with you (I do this all the time on game days, so I’m not sure why it took me so long to realize this is something I should do on practice nights, too). The key, at least in my opinion, is using your time wisely, which means doing prep work so your life is easier after a grueling day of work, practice, and homework. And, depending on what you’re making, prep work can be done whenever you have a few free minutes. Whether those free minutes are first thing in the morning, in the evening after the kids go to bed, or dedicating a few hours on Sunday afternoon to chopping, pealing, and slicing.
The moral of the story? Don't let the busyness of day to day life lead you to believe you can't stick to your weekly food budget. The key is adapting your plan as necessary and figuring out how to make your budget work. Not only will your pocket book thank you, you'll also be teaching your kids how important follow through is.
About the Blogger:
Krista Wendt has worked at Martin’s for 16 years and is currently the HR Manager out of our Main Office. She and her husband Mike have two kids; Emma is 11 and Trevor is 8. Emma and Trevor are both involved in numerous activities; football, basketball, volleyball, and baseball (just to name a few) so she knows how important time management and sticking to a budget can be. Fun fact; she and Mike met at Martin’s while they both worked at our Granger store over 15 years ago!