Finding a Hobby

In my many roles I feel like I spend so much of my life and time giving to others and serving others. As a christian we are called to put others first, to serve, and give, but God also gives us gifts and talents and I believe we are to use these. God also calls us to rest. A hobby can give us rest and time to use the talents God has blessed us with. You can also use your hobbies that you are passionate about to share love with others.

hobby

I have had so many hobbies in my life, I ended up not having time to grow my skills in any one area. I spent some time evaluating what hobbies I enjoyed most, was most talented at, and made the most financial sense. My current hobbies include:

  • Baking
  • Cooking
  • Sewing
  • Reading
  • Gardening
  • Running

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The Family Budget

Let me start this post on budgeting by saying I am no finance expert. The point of this blog is to share things we do in our home that keep us on track in life and point us to the Lord. A budget is one of these things, and it is a foundation for so much! So many couples we know do not have a budget or fight about money, or do not even share their money like a family, they keep it separate. So here are my thoughts and tips on the Family Budget.

Why Would I Need a Budget?

If you have no plans in life and do not want to have any plans or goals in life, then you probably do not need a budget. However, if you would like to one day retire (or your spouse), pay for your children’s college, go on a vacation, give money to those in need, own your house, eat food, etc. A budget is a good idea. In general people spend what they make, so unless you are the actual creator of money, there is a limit to your ability to spend. So yes, to have any goals or plan in life, a budget is extremely helpful.

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Family Manager

My role as the family manager requires so much, and if I do not slot out time for this role in my schedule I do not believe I would succeed.

Family Manager.png

Defining Your Role

I started this process by writing down what it meant to be a family manager, what is my job description. Here is what I came up with:

“The role of Family Manager: The family manager will develop and carry out strategies to accomplish short term and long term goals that are developed as a team by the CEO (husband) and manager (wife) of the household, using God as their ultimate source of wisdom and direction. The manager should encourage, inspire, and motivate the family to move forward together towards the the long term goals.”

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The Winter Menu

I was just making my my menu for the week and looked back over it and saw I had written down all soups, and most of them had something in them my husband didn’t like (squash, lemon, sweet potatoes etc.)… this was going to be a failure of a week in the food department! So how can I plan a successful week’s meals with minimum work that everyone (well most everyone) will somewhat enjoy?

the-winter-menu

I keep a list of all the recipes my family enjoys (my rotating menu- one for winter and one for summer). When we try something new I write a note on that recipe how we felt about it and if it passes the test I add it to the menu. Once or twice a year I go through our recipes and update my Summer Menu and my Winter Menu. When I make a menu I usually pull out this list and pick a week and boom, the meals are planned, I just have to create my grocery list for the week. I often alter the menu to accomodate for leftovers we have in the fridge or to try a new recipe.

Here is our current winter menu, this hasn’t been updated since this last summer, so I have new recipes to add to the list, but it gives you a good view of how I organize my menu that I pull my weekly meal plan from.

wintermenu

For more in depth details about how I create my meal plan and rotating menu look at this article: Creating a Menu

Favorite Cook Books

If you are looking for a great Christmas gift you will use all year here are my favorite cookbooks. These books will also jump start your healthy eating choices for the next year.

I began running very regularly August 2015. Along with my running I began to research training regimens and nutrition for a runner. During this time I came across the runner’s world cookbooks. This was the first of these 3 books I purchased.

Meals on the Run is full of AMAZING recipes. From breakfast to sides to main dishes you can find healthy choices full of flavor. I love that every recipe in this book takes 30 minutes or less to make, perfect for a busy night. I also love that the ingredients are *mostly* normal. I don’t have to google the ingredient to find out what it even looks like, they are mostly normal ingredients I can find at my local store.

After I fell in love with Meals on the Run  I went ahead and purchased the other Runner’s World cookbook.

This book added more healthy recipes to my collection. These recipes may take longer than 30 minutes, but they are still simple and easy. Like my other cookbook, the recipes are full of normal healthy ingredients. The Runner’s World Cookbook also includes some delicious, but not terribly unhealthy desserts.

The Runner’s World cookbooks are definitely my favorite. This next book is new to me and has many recipes so far that I have loved. They also do a great job of taking traditional favorites and making them a little more healthy while still providing amazing flavor. My favorite thing about the So Easy cookbook is that it groups recipes together so you have a whole meal ready to go, which can sometimes be the hardest part of meal planning.

Feeding the Freezer

It is 4:30, everyone is up from nap time, you are exhausted and your husband will be home soon… starving, and you have no plan for dinner. Do you:

  1. Call him and ask him to pick up some take out
  2. Slap some PB & J together and call it good
  3. give the kids some play dough and whip up a quick 30 minute meal
  4. Take a meal out of the freezer and make a side to go with it

Every answer is the right choice, that is assuming your family is enjoying meal time, remaining healthy, and you are staying in budget. If you are struggling to get dinner on the table, or your budget is tight, or your health is suffering etc. freezer meals may be one step in the right direction. freezer meals

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