Have you ever felt like 24 hours is not enough for you to do all you have to do? In the morning, you wake up at five to prepare breakfast for the kids and get them ready for school. By eight, you’re rushing out the door to drop the kids off to school and drive yourself to work. At lunch, you’ll grab a quick salad and rush to meet the daily deadlines. You’ll get off work at six. The school bus or your partner, by that time, should’ve already fetched the kids from school. By the time you get home, it’s about seven in the evening, and you’re rushing to chop the vegetables, tenderize the meat, and throw them all together in a pot.
You don’t have time to think about the food you serve your family. You’ve even forgotten that you’re supposed to use only gluten-free bread brands. So you’ll tell one of your kids who has allergies to gluten not to eat that bread. It makes you feel guilty not to realize one of your kids has specific allergies. You didn’t have time to rush to the grocery because you were already trying to make it back home in record time.
You’re not alone. Plenty of parents deal with this situation every day. While it would be nice to stay at home and take care of your family, your mortgage and bills are screaming no. You do not have the luxury of leaving work. What you do have are at least two days a week (if you have the weekends off) to prep what you need for the rest of the week.
Spending a day preparing meals may be counterintuitive to what you want to do during weekends, which is to rest. But think about the week you just had. Can you really do that every week? Can you rush out the door in the morning, work, present reports, rush back home, prepare dinner, and put the kids to sleep every day? Is this the kind of life you want to have? Preparing meals ahead of time allows you to have more time during the whole week, not just the weekend.
It’s Easier to Prepare Healthy Meals This Way
Here’s another benefit: you can prepare healthier meals this way. Stop feeding your kids mac and cheese. They won’t get anything from that but carbs and sodium. You can’t throw cereals into their breakfast bowl all the time, too. They’ll eventually grow tired of it. And what about you? You need to take care of yourself, too. You can’t grab a single piece of toast on your way to work and call that breakfast. You need more time to prepare your meals because these are going to fuel you for the stressful week ahead.
Gives You More Time for the Family
Preparing make-ahead meals also saves time. It gives you more time to spend with your family. Instead of rushing from one thing to another, you can actually stop and enjoy what your kids are sharing. You can help them with homework. You can watch a show with them. Knowing that you’re taken care of meal-wise for the rest of the week relaxes you.
Therefore, such a relaxing feeling reduces stress and anxiety. You don’t have to worry too much about not making it on time to make dinner. You can ask the babysitter or one of the kids to pop the dishes in the oven and set the time. By the time you arrive home, the meals will be ready. Everyone’s happy, then. This allows you to not stress over such a simple thing. There’s enough stress in your office. You don’t need the extra stress of needing to prepare meals when you’re short of time.
Keeps the Peace at Home
They say that a happy tummy makes a happy person. If as a family you can enjoy your meals more, you can bet that there will be fewer quarrels at home. You’ll be in a better mood, too. If you’re not thinking about how little time you have left to sleep, you won’t always snap at your partner or your kids. You’ll be a lot more relaxed. That’ll keep everyone in a good mood.
There are a lot of easy make-ahead meals that you can invest your time in during the weekends. You can even turn this into a bonding activity for the family. The more you get to spend more time with the family, the more relaxed you’re going to be. It’s a win-win situation.