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Category: meal planning

  1. Wednesday, January 24, 2024

    Happy New Year! A recommitment to cooking

    Hello, This Week for Dinner friends! LONG time no talk. I know that I’ve been short of reliable since last summer in terms of planning meals and cooking. The blog has felt it, you have felt it and my family sure has felt it the most (holy eating-out-all-of-the-time 😳). Life has been in flux more than usual this past year. I am knocking on all of the wood as I say the following, but this week is the first time in a long time that feels normal-ish. And, after so many months of dinner uncertainty and eating out, I am beyond ready to get cooking again.

    Carne Asada Salad served with Homemade Cilantro Crema Dressing

    Carne Asada Salad with Cilantro Crema

    With that, here is my food resolution for the year: cook. Cooking is such a lovely excuse at the end of a busy day to breathe. To listen to a podcast, music or audiobook. To spend time with a family member who also likes to cook. To prioritize our health as well as our enjoyment of food. 

    Along with a recommitment to cooking, I will once again consistently post a weekly menu! It’s all a part of the same goal and that weekly check-in with you all here on the blog is incredibly helpful. I hope that you will continue to share your menus and recipes with us each week as well!

    cilantro sour cream enchiladas1 web

    Cilantro Sour Cream Enchiladas

    That said, I’ve also found myself enjoying a few nights a week where I don’t have a plan, where I swing by the store and just grab a couple things for that night. I used to hate that. I think when the kids were younger and required more physical care there simply was no space for impromptu shopping and cooking. These days, however, there is a bit of room for spontaneity, a flexibility in what we cook and eat that I honestly haven’t felt in 19+ years. (Yep, Cate is 19 now!) I will still create a weekly plan, but I may or may not do weekly grocery shopping and I’m giving myself mental permission to mix the plan up when I feel like it!

    Backlit side view of gluten-free buffalo chicken drumsticks with celery sticks and blue cheese dressing

    Gluten-Free Buffalo Chicken

    One last thing…my cooking resolution also fits in well with the blog’s yearly resolution related to food and the environment. In terms of trash and food waste, cooking at home is automatically a huge improvement. In addition, when you cook at home you have more control over the ingredients and where they come from, making it easier to source local food as much as possible. So here’s to eating well and putting our own little drop in the bucket for Mother Earth.

    I am looking forward to another year of planning, cooking, eating well and enjoying time in the kitchen! 

  2. Sunday, October 29, 2023

    Week 779 Dinner Menu

    Hello! Not only is Owen, my 12-year-old, excited to cook with me now, he actually popped right out of his room when I asked if he wanted to come plan a menu. He is such a great motivator for me these days!

    Week 779 weekly dinner menu plan


    • Hamburgers





    • Leftovers


    • Eat out night


    • Smoked short rib, roasted potatoes and salad

    Looking forward to seeing your menus!

  3. Tuesday, November 1, 2022

    Week 757 Weekly Menu

    Happy November! My first menu of the month is coming a day late because we were just too busy with Halloween festivities Sunday and Monday. Here we go! 

    Week 757 weekly dinner menu from This Week for Dinner food blog


    • Candy. No, really. Candy and random food people scrounged.


    • Leftovers (smoked pork butt! the best!)





    • Leftovers


    • Eat out

    Your turn to throw a menu in the comments below! And thanks for all the well wishes last week…still recovering, it was a doozy of a flu/cold/whatever-it-was-just-know-it-wasn’t-covid-phew. 

  4. Monday, November 27, 2017

    Week 560 Weekly Menu from Rachel Faucett of Handmade Charlotte: Eat. Make. Groove.

    Hello! I hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving filled with the best food! We did…and we’re still swimming in leftovers. My family has informed me they are done with Thanksgiving food, but I beg to differ. We shall see…

    Guest Weekly Dinner Menu from Rachel Faucett of Handmade Charlotte (Week 560 Menu on @janemaynard)

    Today’s guest menu is fun and different than anything we’ve ever had on the blog. It comes from my friend Rachel Faucett, the founder of the blog and company Handmade Charlotte. Rachel and I initially bonded as roommates on the ONE-Heifer trip to Malawi I took a few years ago (here’s proof). My connection with Rachel is something for which I will be forever grateful. There is seriously no one on this planet like Rachel. She has boundless energy and creativity and is hysterical to boot. When I was asking friends if they wanted to write a guest menu for my blog, she was the first to jump in, immediately responding with ideas and inspiration for dinners, crafts and music. I told her to run with it and now here we are. Grab yourself a cup of coffee, sit down, and enjoy a trip through Rachel’s meal planning brain, which is unlike any meal planning trip you will ever take.  Thank you, Rachel, for creating a menu that is just so you.



    This ricotta ravioli looks so beautiful and so deliciously inviting!

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Sail a Ship Kite


    I adore this Sailing Ship Kite! I think I may try to sail away to Neverland on it. Will you join me?


    Chill out to Yo La Tengo – My Little Corner Of The World while you enjoy your delicious dinner.

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Embroidered Leaves


    This is such a great fall crafting project.

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Studio Anorak


    Flip through this cool magazine.


    All good vibes here!


    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Soup in a Pretzel Bread Bowl


    Soup meets glorious bread bowl in this brilliant combo!


    WOW! I’m in love with everything from this shop!

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: DIY Hair Ties


    How fun and adorable! Let’s make these hair ties with Lunch Lady magazine!



    Dinner is a walk in the garden with these gorgeous pizzas!

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: DIY Paris Doll


    J’adore everything about these DIY Parisian Dolls!

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: How to Paint a Mural

    DIG IT:

    We love everything about Winter Water Factory and painted our studio a pattern from their fall collection!


    Listen to Come On, Come Over by Jaco Pastorius



    Order in from your fave take out place!

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Sew on Patches!


    Sew Patches All Over Your Clothes! Check out these Etsy finds:


    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Fried Eggs and Charred Tomatoes Toast

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Blackberry Slab Pie


    Mix it up and eat breakfast for dinner under your table! Try these awesome Fried Eggs and Garlic Toast and this Potato Skillet Bake! And for dessert? This Blackberry Slab Pie will be gone in seconds.


    Watch silly home videos, or make some new ones!


    Draw silly pictures. Can you sketch a silly portrait of your siblings or parents?


    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Grilled Pimento Cheese


    Nosh on these melt in your mouth grilled pimento cheese sammys!


    Rock out with these DIY Rock Candy Magnets!


    Get your groove on with this cool Putumayo jam!


    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: Stuffed Butternut Squash


    Make some Stuffed Butternut Squash for dinner!

    Week 560 Weekly Menu on @janemaynard from Rachel Faucett: DIY Marbled Mugs


    Marbled Mugs! One for each person in the family! Fill them with Hot Cocoa afterwards!


    Fill your crafted mugs with the most amazing Hot Chocolate ever!

    AS USUAL…please share your dinner plans in the comments! And, in honor of Rachel, share something that inspires you in addition to food!

  5. Sunday, January 11, 2015

    Week 416 Weekly Menu

    Hello! So, last night we saw Kathy Griffin perform stand up and all I have to say is I laughed so hard that I was wheezing and needed an inhaler. I didn’t have one, but thankfully I didn’t die laughing. It was a close one! 😉

    week 416 weekly menu from @janemaynard including FREE printable meal plan and shopping list

    Menu time!!!

    – Veggie Quiche
    – Fresh Fruit

    Beef Stroganoff
    – Broccoli

    Chicken Caesar Wraps
    – Fresh fruit and chips

    – Leftovers

    – Corn chips

    – Take out night

    – Breakfast for dinner or leftovers

    Click here for the free printable of this week’s menu plus the shopping list!

    You know the drill…please share your menu for the week! I seriously love reading your meal plans each week as I plan my own!

  6. Thursday, January 8, 2015

    Managing Your Grocery Shopping List Using iPhone Reminders

    If you don’t have an iPhone, then let me apologize in advance for today’s post. It’s pretty much useless to you, unless you get an iPhone one day and then you need to be sure to come back and read this! For those of you sporting iPhones, I am so excited about today’s post and I hope you’ll find it as useful as I do!

    How to use Reminders on your iPhone to manage your weekly grocery list from @janemaynard

    My neighbor Joan was telling me a few weeks ago how she uses Reminders on her iPhone to manage her grocery shopping list. She was describing how she uses it and it sounded pretty cool, so I gave it a try. Joan was right! Reminders is perfect for building a shopping list you can use week after week. The list is saved each week and it’s easy to make visible only the items you need for a particular shopping trip and then checking them off. I thought I’d run through the steps for how to use it and highlight why it’s so cool in the steps.

    1. Open Reminders on your iPhone.

    iphone reminders grocery list step 1

    2. Click on “New List” at the top.

    iphone reminders grocery list step 2

    3. Name your list. I went super fancy and called my shopping list “Grocery Store”. You can also select the color you want the header to be, if you’re into coordinating your Reminder lists by color (which I am).

    iphone reminders grocery list step 3

    4. Start typing in your items. Easy peasy!

    5. After you’ve entered in all the items for your shopping list, click “Done” on the top right.

    iphone reminders grocery list step 3

    6. Click “Edit” on the top right to reorder the items on your list (using the little parallel lines on the right-hand side to move things around). Order your list however you want. I chose to order the items by what section of the store they are in. I also add in parentheses what store I prefer to buy certain items at, just for my own reference.

    7. Now you have your list and it’s time to go shopping! Go through and check off any items on your list that you do NOT need that week, then select “Hide completed” at the bottom. Sometimes you need to click the title of the list at the top to go to the Reminders home screen and then click back into the list to reset the list and make the “Hide Completed” and “Show Completed” button show at the bottom.

    iphone reminders grocery list step 5

    8. Go to the store and check off items as you shop. If you have “Hide Completed” selected they will disappear like magic!

    9. When it’s time for the next shopping trip, choose “Show Completed” and uncheck the items you need that week. It should automatically reorder to how you originally organized the list – if it doesn’t, just click the list title to get to Reminders home screen then click back into the grocery list and it should be all good!

    My goal is to put EVERYTHING I ever shop for at the grocery store on this one list. That means the first few times you go to the store, you’ll be constantly adding items you remember and re-ordering the list, but once it’s all put together it will be SO awesome and worth the work (and, honestly, it’s not very hard work). Note: when you are adding items and reordering them, you will need to have ALL the items on the list unchecked (so, NOT completed) to make sure you are putting them in the spot where you think they are going.

    Hopefully this all makes sense! As soon as you start playing with it I promise it will. Here’s to happy grocery lists for 2015!

    Update 1/18/15: 

    • My friend Jamie excitedly texted me this morning saying she had just set up lists in her reminders and it was perfect! She actually set up separate lists for the different grocery stores (a Trader Joe’s list, a Von’s list, etc). I thought that was a great idea and wanted to share!
    • Android users: Be sure to check out Comment #6 below, where Kay describes and app called Google Keep and how she uses it for grocery shopping.
    • Comment #7 below also shares another great iPhone app with sharing capability. If two people in your household equally do the shopping, I would definitely check it out. I know Reminders has a sharing aspect to it, but I’ve yet to try it out and see how well it works.

  7. Sunday, January 4, 2015

    Week 415 Weekly Menu and Why Meal Planning is a Great New Year’s Resolution!

    Happy New Year! We are home from the east coast and are gearing up for getting back into the groove of real life. Given that it’s January, I’m sure some of you are making new year’s resolutions! Which means it’s time for me to make my annual plug for meal planning! Whether you’ve never planned menus before or just want to be more consistent, meal planning is a great, actionable goal that is quite easy to implement, especially if you decided to post your menu here each week to stay accountable. See? It’s totally the best resolution around. 😉

    week 415 weekly menu from @janemaynard including FREE printable meal plan and shopping list!

    So, here’s my first menu for 2015! We are starting the week with Grammy’s Orange Chicken. We are really missing her this week and I think orange chicken pretty much has to happen.

    Grammy’s Orange Chicken
    – Rice and Side Vegetable

    Easiest Ever Chicken Pot Pie

    Real Simple Lasagna
    – Salad

    – Leftovers

    Rachel Sandwiches

    – Takeout Night

    – Veggie Quiche
    – Fresh Fruit

    Click here for the free printable of this week’s menu plus the shopping list!

    Okay, let’s see your menus! Please share! Happy New Year!

  8. Wednesday, May 29, 2013

    Call for Recipes: Cooking During Difficult Times

    Megan, a new mom returning to work this week, recently emailed me with a request that inspired today’s Call for Recipes. Megan emailed asking for dinner ideas for moms and dads with brand new babies. In Megan’s own words, “I am looking for ideas and suggestions on how you get dinner on the table during the week that’s easy and relatively healthy when we’re both back at work and I won’t be walking in the door until around six-ish and more interested in lavishing attention on A than spending a lot of time in the kitchen.”

    call for recipes - cooking during difficult times | thisweekfordinner.comI was definitely in survival mode when this guy came along, but it sure was worth it! Look at that yummy face!

    I think we all struggle with this on a fairly regular basis, but there are definitely seasons of life where it is more difficult than usual to get dinner on the table. Case in point: newborn baby. Also, sickness in the family, stressful work/school, the list goes on and on! We’ve all been there and we all go through these seasons.

    Often during difficult times friends and family step up to the plate with meals. I wouldn’t have survived after Owen was born if people had not been so generous in this regard! But even with help, dinner doesn’t come every day and it doesn’t last forever.

    Time to share ideas! What meals, recipes and/or strategies do you have around getting dinner cooked even when you’re stretched for time and/or energy? Please share your wisdom because Megan is right–sometimes (all the time?) you’d rather be cuddling with your new baby than slaving in the kitchen!

    I’ll kick us off with a tip! Make sure your fridge and pantry are stocked up with basics so you don’t have to go to the store very often. That was key for me. Whether it was having cooked meals in the freezer at the ready or just a jar of sauce and a package of spaghetti in the cabinet, if I had supplies we didn’t starve and ate relatively well. One more piece of advice…don’t be afraid to ask for help!

  9. Sunday, January 1, 2012

    Week 258 Menu…and HAPPY NEW YEAR!…and a Resolution Suggestion for You!

    Happy 2012, everyone! We rang in the new year by drinking copious amounts of Coke and Martinelli’s and watching Karate Kid (which may have been obvious by my Instagram feed last night…see here and here and here). It was a pretty rockin’ party. That’s how we roll around here.

    Okay, so it’s time for me to do my annual spiel…you know the one telling you how AWESOME meal planning is and that you should make it your 2012 resolution? So, here we go…meal planning is AWESOME and I think you should make it your New Year’s Resolution, starting today! Okey dokey, spiel over…but if you need some reasons why you should do it, click here! And, yes, I am ‘spieling’ for purely selfish reasons…the more of you who jump on board, the more menus I get to read each week. 😉

    – Pulled BBQ Chicken (in the freezer) sandwiches, topped with coleslaw

    Chicken teriyaki and rice
    – Stir fry veggies

    Orange Chicken and rice
    Roasted Cauliflower

    – Leftovers

    – Eating out with friends for a birthday celebration

    – Lasagna (in the freezer)
    – Crusty bread and veggie

    Waffles, fruit and home fries

    Your turn! Let’s see all of your menus! And for those of you who haven’t posted a menu before…give it a try, it’s January 1 after all!

    Also…even though I’m bugging you about the meal planning resolution…I am going to have another one for you later this week that I’m super excited about, building on my resolution theme from the last few years. Can’t wait to share it with you!

    Here’s to a delicious 2012!

  10. Tuesday, November 15, 2011

    Thanksgiving Prep: The Menu!

    Thanksgiving is just over a week away, so I think it’s time we all share our menu plans for the big day! Of course, if you don’t have it pulled together yet, just come back later when you do!

    I seriously have been in such a baby fog I didn’t even realize Thanksgiving was so close, so we haven’t thought much about what we’re going to do that day. But I do know we’re going to eat! I’m going for a simple menu this year with our all-time favorites.

    Please share your menu plan for Thanksgiving! And if you have links to recipes and/or can type recipes into your comment, please do! I’m certain we can all be great inspiration for one another for the best eating day of the year!