The countdown is on and baby #3 will be here in our arms before we know it. I’ve begun digging through the packed away infant clothes, and trying to get everything as close to ready as possible for week one post-partum.
One of the things on my preggy-do list that I haven’t yet begun to tackle is to stock the freezer. I’ve increased my farm orders of meat for the past month to have extra supplies on hand to cook ahead some, but just haven’t started the process of digging into the task of bulk cooking just yet. Admittedly, as a mom working full-time outside the home, I’ve had the assistance of a great nanny to help me keep things together in the past. When our second son was born we had a wonderful nanny with us and I didn’t stress too much about feeding my family while recuperating postpartum. This time around we won’t have that luxury (or much help at all) and I need to plan ahead as much as possible.
Since we don’t maintain the simplest of diets, the effort takes a somewhat serious level of proper planning and preparation. We are gluten and dairy-free, eat organic and/or non-GMO whenever it’s possible, we steer away from corn in general, and with limited exceptions procure our meat and eggs from local farmers. When in season we participate in a local CSA as well. After a slow journey of over 5 years, while progressively eating cleaner and cleaner, we are all more sensitive to the occasional mainstream exception now – even if it’s technically gluten and dairy free. The extra additives and preservatives along with frequent poor quality in a lot of restaurant foods leaves us with upset tummies, indigestion, and other unpleasant digestive ailments (and super cranky kids). We’ve found a couple of places that we have generally good success with, but the list is short. Imagine that.
Given all of this, I’m trying to come up with as many convenience options as possible so my husband can manage food preparation with two young boys in his charge and we can limit the occurrences of rice crackers, celery sticks, and hummus for dinner. He’s wonderful with breakfast (scrambled, over-easy, over-medium, any-way-you-like-it eggs with bacon and/or sausage – no problem at all!), but as the day progresses to other meals, he needs some simple go-to options. And if I’m really honest, I’ll need these shortcuts for myself for who knows how long – maybe months!?
I’m loosening up a bit and trying to add more ‘So What!?’ to my approach to meal prep so I don’t stress myself out more than necessary. My family needs to eat, and I need to keep my sanity – those are the biggest priorities. If meals aren’t perfect quality or well-balanced for a few weeks here and there, everyone will survive. As the saying goes, everything in moderation!