When I married I thought I was somewhat knowledgable and skilled in the kitchen. It wasn't long before I discovered that that confidence was founded in the fact that only I had to eat what I created. Meal preparation growing up frequently involved opening frozen packages and some cans. Meals had to fit into the description of quick, convienent and cheap. My new husband, on the other hand, was used to more country living of hefty meats, fresh vegetables and lots of homemade items. Needless to say, I was completely lost and stressed as to how to provide for us in the home in regard to meals. He has actually been the one teaching me in the kitchen! My desire is to continuously grow in my abilities in the home and build a foundation or collection from which I can teach my (future) children.
I used about 20 tabs for the sections. They include: Planning, Shopping, Recipes to Try, Homemade, Hospitality Meals, Appetizers/ Snacks, Beef, Beverages, Breakfast, Breads, Desserts, Fish/Seafood, Meatless, Pork, Poultry, Salads, Sides, Soups.
The first section houses all my meal planning sheets. I love using these! You can find them for free at the Organized Home website. I keep all my previous sheets because I can use them again this time next year as a guide. Make meal planning simple on yourself!
The next section is for shopping. If I have any coupons or know of any good sales then I record them here. I also like to keep food or nutrition information I find in this section as well. I like to have the fact sheets on foods or ingredients just to expand my own knowledge base of what I'm consuming. As you can see, I keep a list of organic vs. conventional produce. We can't buy organic exclusively, so here is my list of produce that is acceptable to buy conventionally and those that would be best organic.
Providing budget-friendly, nutritionally sound, and tasty meals doesn't have to be a streasful activity. It sould be joyful as an element of service within the home. Adequate organization and planning are so important. As I grow in areas of homemaking I desire to share what I've learned with others now (and hopefully daughters in the future). I recently recreated my book for a relative soon to wed. When I thought of what would've been most needed when I married I quickly landed on one thing- guidance! So, made a starter book for her and then sewed some napkins and an apron. It's not a flashy gift from a store registry, but perhaps the gift of restoring the home and family is by far more valuable.
Just my simple little ideas that I hope will serve as encouragment :)