Sports have officially taken over my life. Annabel has softball practice twice a week, pitching lessons once a week, and James starts Little League this week. When games start next month, we’ll have sports five days a week. I know lots of you with older kids are like, “welcome to the club!” So please, give me tips on how to manage life when so much of mine will be spent as a chauffeur for my kids. And making dinner! How will I make dinner when we’re at the fields from 4-6 so many days of the week? And if you tell me slow cooker, clearly you don’t watch This is Us
James trying on a Little League uniform.
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I have some friends going through hard stuff right now, so I sent them some little things to let them know they are amazing.
~You are braver than you believe.
~Love this female fighter pin.
~A super-soft blanket, since I can’t hug her in person.
Happy Sunday, everyone!
We depend on meal kits to get us through the weeknights of activities. Have fun!
Hi Heather! We do simple meals on busy nights such as grilled cheese, BLTs, and chicken pesto burgers. These all take 20 minutes or less and I have the kids shower while I cook usually. My kids are older though but it works out.
Lenora Dody says:
My sister and sister in law joke that their life is dropping kids off and picking kids up! I would say use a crockpot (just be smarter than the This is Us family and make sure the plug isn’t damaged!). I would also suggest the Instant Pot, I have one and I really like it!
Definitely look into Instant Pot…we use it more than anything and my husband and I are typically at our offices 10 hrs a day. Of course, our 4 kids are past the age of needing to be chauffeured everywhere
Yes, Instant Pot! I made carnitas for tacos this weekend in an hour. They’re the best!
I don’t have small kids, or kids at all for that matter -but I do have parents that I am responsible for cooking for (kids in a different format?) I also work three jobs and volunteer four nights out of the week -so dinner time can be quite hectic at times! I rely on the crock pot (although that fails a lot due to my inability to plan that far in advance!) Instapot (as others have mentioned) is a favorite -but cooking meals ahead of time for the week and freezing them is super helpful, as is the delay start option on the oven -put dinner in, tell it to start cooking at a specific time for a specific amount of time and come home to a home-cooked meal ready and waiting. Now if only dishes were that easy!!
I just got the Instant Pot and it has helped a ton. I was able to make chili in 15 minutes. I was able to make a roast, potatoes, carrots in 45 minutes. Just something to think about so you can get dinner done pretty quick!
Ginny Keast says:
We bought a T-Fal Optigrill. It’s like a George Foreman but with removable grates for easy cleaning, and it has settings for the different types of meats/seafood. You just tell it what you’re making and the food comes out perfectly. While our entree cooks, I make some sort of easy side (like roasted asparagus that has a little olive oil, garlic, parmesan, salt, and pepper, which cooks for 8 minutes), then voila. Dinner.
Hardcore “This is Us” fan…who (unfortunately!) missed the last two weeks. And now I know what happennnns! :-(((
Me too. However I feel like the build up to that “reveal” has been so. painfully. slow. that I sort of stopped caring a while ago. haha.
Have you considered picnics with sandwiches, fruit, etc? Often when I am making dinner on weeknights, I will stop at the deli and get a cracked black pepper turkey ultra thin sliced and then set out toppings with hoagie rolls for my boys. Each kid gets to customize their sandwich and it is fairly simple to throw together.
The other thing we do a often is either red baron pizzas and we do a chicken nugget or fish sticks dinner. Those are pretty fast and easy to toss together. I love using the oven because you set a timer and can do other things while the food is cooking.
Also, casseroles you can prepare in advance and just skip the last step of putting it in the oven until you are home. Good luck!
Bianca Pellet says:
Bring a snack to the field, then eat your evening meal like Europeans – at 8pm!
Sarah B says:
I just have to say I love your Sunday Around the ‘net and always click on every link!!!
I know I am in the minority here, but can I just say that there is nothing wrong with not doing a ton of activities during the week…. my kid has dance on Mondays and she wants to do more but I refuse. She has Hebrew school on Wednesday. I just can’t run around every day of the week.
However everyone is different. Having said that your best bet is a slower cooker that
is not old and doesn’t have a knob you need to fiddle with and cooking the night before and then reheating (yum leftovers type).
~ R says:
Before we finally got a third driver (yay for 18 yr olds!) to handle most of the school driving, I would fix our normally planned dinner between 2-3pm each day, store it, travel/sports/meetings/travel, come home 5:30-6:00, quick reheat, eat. And I celebrated with a passion our two scheduled days of leftovers. I wouldn’t recommend it as a regular option but in a pinch, cold cereal and milk with fruit is super quick, super yummy, and super easy.
When I’m super organized I do some cooking and meal prep on the weekends – I make batches of chicken cutlets because they are a great base for lots of meals. Most Italian meals can be made ahead and frozen. If you’re gonna cook anyway, may as well make large batches and freeze. I do use my crockpot and instapot too (sorry). We have sports all year round (volleyball, basketball, track and baseball) and I’m much happier when i have a handle on this cooking ahead thing.
That picture of James reminds me of my mom having to take up my boys’ uniforms every year that hung down to their knees!