Eastfalls, I feel you on the commute. I get up at 4:45 a.m. to be to work by 7:00 a.m. The nice thing is I'm done at 2:30 p.m. but with everything else I do, I'm often not home until after 7:00 p.m.! I too make Sundays (or Saturdays) count. I love crockpot cooking and will do a protein for the week (beans and something). I also do a grain dish to toss in salads or eat as a side. This week is a wild rice, bulgar wheat, quinoa concoction. I use low sodium vegetable broth instead of water.
This week's crockpot meal is a vegetarian "chili" made with dark and light kidney beans, black beans, ground Quorn, diced onions, diced red and green peppers, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, crushed garlic, chili powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper, and cumin (I don't cook with salt).
I make my own trail mix with raw almonds, cashews, macadamia nuts, shelled sunflower seeds, and organic raisins.
In addition, I precut and premeasure a bunch of fresh veggies/fruits into containers for grab and go snacks - this week is baby carrots, organic green peppers, organic strawberries, watermelon, and fresh raw green beans (not all mixed, veggies are in one container, fruit in another!).
I also always keep a few Lara Bars (PBJ are my favorite) in my glove box for emergencies!
I'm the same way regarding food planning, if I don't prepare over the weekend, by midweek, my eating becomes less thoughtful and I'm headed for a meltdown!
I love Sundays EASTFALL! I use my crockpot to make a batch of something to take for lunches at least a couple times a week, and I usually make some kind of bean-type soup to keep in the fridge for dinners. I'm going to try your bean-concoction idea - that sounds like it would be great on a salad!
I don't have a long commute, but I have two young boys, so when I get home from work I have to slap together 2 or three different meals. The 5 year old won't eat anything "weird" and usually wants hot dogs, mac n cheese, PBnJ, etc...the 15 month old is too little for lots of things and is VERY picky - anything he doesn't like goes straight on the floor for the dog...my husband is vegetarian, and I'm only "partly" veg. It can make for a marathon evening in the kitchen. So any shortcuts I can get together on Sunday are lifesavers.
Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.
So I am a full-time worker who engages in a God-awful commute every day - so don't even think about realistically pulling together a lunch or breakfast to go in the AM - and at night, by the time I get home, not thrilled with the prospect of intensive cooking. At the same time, I am not a frozen food eater - I love food and I like to be eating the healthiest freshest things I can find these days.
SO... I try to make Sundays count.
I just finished roasting the best vegetables I could find this week at the local farmer's market - which at this time of year were sweet potatoes, carrots, fingerling potatoes and golden beets. Cut them up into chunks - did NOT peel them - tossed in olive oil and salt and pepper and garlic - and threw into a 400 degree oven. They get done at various rates, I wait til I can pierce easily with a knife. The cool thing is the skins end up being crusty and delicious and I eat everything.
I also do at least one or two bean concoctions. I take a can of black beans, another of cannelini beans or navy beans, maybe some kidneys, and throw in some tiny corn niblets, some chopped parsley, some chopped red onion, maybe some cilantro, whatever strikes my fancy, and then mix up some lemon or lime juice with olive oil and salt and pepper and stir. I use this mixture as part of lunch or dinner throughout the week.
One last thing that makes Sunday count. I go to the best prepared deli food places I can find and buy small containers of things like: roasted beets with onions; butternut squash with cranberries and pecans; roasted brussels sprouts with balsamic vinegar; broccoli sprinkled with asiago cheese; etc. I use these either as lunch (along with whatever the best fruit I can find) or as the base to jazz up whatever I am doing for dinner (for example, I may end up with a plate of roasted sweet potatoes with pomegranate seeds; a spoonful of the roasted beets; etc.) In the old days, I would have chastised myself for going and getting these because they cost more and because I would be telling myself I just should have done it myself. Not now.
I end up starting the week feeling more hopeful and energetic and committed. When I don't make Sundays count, I am putting myself at risk for resolve meltdowns at commuter rush hours!!!
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