Frog Fat in my Head

The excess fat bananas I observed in the dissected frogs also metaphorically clouded my efforts at healthy food planning for my family.  Sometimes the fat weighing us down isn’t located in our trunk, but rather crowds our brains.

Being  “domestically impaired” and the marketing type who has a big vision, I have been to seminars on more than one occasion, where  I’ve been asked to visualize my ideal lifestyle with no holding back.  Inevitably, having a personal chef to do all of my grocery shopping and food preparation and clean up always prominently displayed in my personal life-of- the -rich-and-famous scene.

With the pace of life notching up with all three kids in activities, me going from a part-time to full-time work schedule, and feeling the intensity of my husband’s work,  I began to convince myself that my dream of having a personal chef to have some lifestyle balance was not just a fantasy but the only way we would experience pleasant, tasteful family meals.

But then I heard that quiet whisper of our friend, the Holy Spirit.  The idea popped in my head that I could call Dianne Greenleaf, a dietician I had used in the past, for a quick session just to get some suggestions on family-friendly, healthy, quick meal planning ways for busy moms like me.

In less than an hour Dianne had laid out a powerful system of family menu planning.  Each day had a meal theme with five recipes per day to be rotated over five weeks.  I added the tool of creating my own meal planning notebook with copies the winning five recipes for added convenience.

It worked like a charm.   Making the grocery list did not involve carting over five to six cookbooks, but rather involved perusing my meal planning notebook.  I was still cooking, but it went much quicker when I consistently knew what I was going to make, how much time it would take to make it, and with all the ingredients on-hand.  Also, the whole family gradually started to veto the “dog” recipes, so that the only ones that remained in the notebook were family approved, sparing me of the exasperating, “I don’t like that” at the dinner table.

Again, I felt like a lean, green, machine with my new system from Diane.  The fat clogging my brain was the fat of confusion and the fat of convincing myself that cooking  quick, healthy, kid-friendly meals was impossible for a busy person like me.

The Catholic Women’s Guide to Healthy Relationships Tip:  Don’t let confusion or pessimism lower the quality of your family or marital life.  Take a step to squelch the fat and get clarity from someone who has gone there before you.