Dinner has always been a meal that I like us to have together, and with Mr L’s work hours that means that we do have it quite late in the day.
I grew up with dinner on the table at 5.30pm on the dot every day of the week.
We aren’t like that sometimes, it is 5.30pm sometimes it is nearer 7pm. Mr L can get in any when from 5 onwards and I do like to have us all eating together.
When we had no school to get up for the next day this was never a problem. Last year I had to reign in the time that we ate a little bit, and it did end up with Baba and I eating on our own sometimes, but having Boo added another dimension to tea time.
This September it was another new thing added to the equation. Baba now has school lunches, and has Beavers one night of the week.
So know I have a child who has a cooked dinner in the day, a child learning to eat, a husband who is famished and myself to eat every evening.
This needs careful planning. As it could so easily all go wrong.
If I don’t plan, to be honest we end up sitting around none of us knowing what to eat but all of us being starving.
If the kids don’t eat they are grumpy, and if we don’t have tea time sorted early it throws out bath time, which throws out bedtime and by Friday morning we are in hell.
So every week, I sit down with my diary and try to work out a plan of what is in the cupboard and what I am going to make every night. Thursday night Baba has a cold tea and we all eat while he is at Beavers. But apart from that we try to eat as a family.
Luckily we all like the same things, and there are only a few things that I have to change for members of the family, and it is mainly me to be fair. So meal planning is quite easy I just have to make sure I don’t make sausages for tea the night Baba has them for lunch, not that he would complain at all.
While we are meal planning, we are trying to be healthy and trying to be conscious of the cost, a range that we have always loved is Birds Eye but I have to be honest I was shocked at how much is made by Birds Eye. After specifically looking for their items, I was really surprised.
We have always had their waffles, but the beef grills, vegetables, rice fusions and the chicken pieces were new products to us, and we loved them all.
The sausage rolls, the cheese and onion and the sausage and baked beans were great snacks for Baba after school and cooked so easily and for our oven that is an amazement.
The thing about the Birds Eye range is that we could easily plan our meals for the week and they were so easy to find in the freezer and to cook them as you don’t have to do anything apart from them pour them onto a try or get the bag out to go in the microwave that Baba could help massively. Which he loves to do.
He loves to help preparing dinner, and he loved mix and matching the range for dinners. It is something that I love to get him involved in, as if he helps to choose or helps to cook he wants to eat it even more as he feels like he has cooked it and the Birds Eye range always him to do that.
We are still coming to terms with our new regime and tweaking it and adapting it each week. How do you manage dinner times after school?
This post is an entry for #Afterschoolchefs Challenge, sponsored by Birds Eye. Learn more on the Birds Eye Facebook Page.