November Habit #26 Tremendous Positive Changes

Dear FlyLady,

A few months after discovering your wonderful website I’m starting to feel some sense of accomplishment that I’d like to share (maybe my ideas will help some other beginners like me).

I always thought I hated cooking. It was just too much hassle and there were so many more interesting things to do. I would cook from time to time in order to treat my better half but I didn’t really enjoy it. I thought I didn’t know how to do it “right”. It turns out I simply didn’t know how to do it my way because my mom’s and grandma’s methods clearly didn’t work for me.

I had my aha-moment just a few days ago when I decided to follow the Beginners BabySteps from the very beginning (once again). I’ve also felt determined to tackle one of my biggest issues – menu planning, since my boyfriend and me would often go into argument about wasting food. I must admit that for a while I’ve been trying to avoid these arguments by covering the thrown away products with other garbage, so he wouldn’t notice 😀

For the past few days I’ve managed to keep my sink shinning and the order is starting to spread around our tiny flat. In addition to reading menu planning testimonials every day, after a quick research I have installed a couple of apps that already helped me a lot – one for menu planning, storing recipes, and shopping lists, and the other for keeping track of food expiration dates (I use Pepperplate and Best Before apps for Android but I’m sure other FlyBabys would find others that might suit them better. Maybe even FlyLady’s app have these features, I don’t know).

I’ve dedicated some time to go through the products that I already have, throw away the spoiled ones and enter the expiration dates of the others into the app. Now the app  shows me what has already expired and how many days are left till the certain product’s expiration date. I think that’s brilliant – I don’t have to delve in my pantry or fridge double checking the dates anymore. Once I come home after shopping, I simply enter the expiration dates and location of the new products into the app.

My better half came up with an idea that I could mark the products that are about to expire with plastic clothespins and rubber bands (for cans and bottles; at first I thought about adding colorful plastic stickers but the ones I’ve used didn’t stay in place long enough). Since I’ve decided to clean my fridge every Wednesday (well, at least wipe a couple of shelves), I’m going to use red color clothespins/rubber bands for the items that are going to be expired tomorrow and some other color for items that will expire till next Wednesday.

I’m trying to include the products that are close to their expiration date into my menu. I’ve enter a few of my favourite recipes into the menu planning app and assigned them to specific dates according to what I already have in the fridge. On the fridge I list the items for my boyfriend to buy and he simply takes the note and goes shopping with it. He’s a bit skeptic about the app thing but as people say – if it sounds stupid but it works, it’s not stupid 🙂

I’ll let you know how this system works for me but so far I see tremendous positive changes both in my kitchen and my attitude towards cooking. I might have found a new hobby! (my boyfriend will love this one for sure).

Thank you so much for your continuous encouragement!

FlyBaby from Lithuania

Welcome to November – the Menu Planning month. All month long, we are going to learn how to plan our menus to save money and feed our families healthy. This will be a fun habit to learn and to practice.

If you have and recipes you would like to share or a testimonial about Menu Planning Let us know! Send an email to FlyLady@flylady.net with Menu Planning in the subject line.

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