Meal Planning and its attractive benefits

  • Do you think, deciding what to make is more time consuming than making the dish itself?
  • Do you want to eat healthily but end up eating junk every other day?
  • Do you spend a fortune on groceries and yet frequently order food online?

Well if your answer is YES to any of the above then you are not alone. Hi, I am mom of a 1-year-old kid, a full time IT consultant and in these lockdown days, I am also a maid, a cook, a laundry lady, and whatnot. I have so many things on my plate that managing all is a huge task and above all WHAT TO COOK dilemma is constant stress. So I gave meal planning and prepping a try. Below are some wonderful benefits that I experienced from meal planning.

1. Saves Money

Meal planning helps in saving a lot of money. I personally save more than Rs. 5000/- every month. Some of the ways in which meal planning helps you in saving money are

No eating out or ordering food online

When you plan your meals well in advance, there is less chance that you will order food or eat outside, hence you save money that would otherwise be wasted in eating outside unhealthy food.

No purchase of extra or unnecessary groceries

You will go grocery shopping with a list of groceries that will be needed in making dishes as per meal plan, hence the unnecessary purchase of extra groceries or purchase of junk items like chips, biscuits, Maggi can be avoided.

2. Saves Time

With a proper meal plan you can save time that would otherwise be wasted in deciding what to make, also meal prepping well in advance can help you save precious time in your daily cooking.

3. Promotes healthy eating

When you plan your meals maintaining a balanced diet, you will end up eating healthy food. Also, home-cooked meals are any day healthier than junk food. I mean just imagine that you are coming home from the office late in the evening then what are the odds that you will pick up okra lying in your fridge and make curry out of it from scratch. You would rather grab a packet of cookies and go off to bed. However with proper meal planning and prepping chances of cooking curry are high. Hence meal planning promotes healthier eating habits.

4. Reduces food wastage

When you plan your meals you tend to consume what is already present in the pantry and fridge and then buy new items. Also having a grocery list will prevent you from buying surplus items because when you buy extra groceries or veggies and don’t plan your meals, these items go bad or they might also expire.

5. Reduces Stress

Meal plans will save you from the stress of WHAT TO MAKE. Also when you will eat healthily and save a lot of time and money, your stress levels will come down automatically.

So these were some of the benefits that I experienced from meal planning and prepping. Having said that I must also admit that with each passing day I am learning more and more about meal planning. So if you want to join me in my journey of getting a healthier lifestyle then you are more than welcome to follow me on Instagram my handle is shiwaniv. Also, feel free to drop your suggestions and feedback at shiwani@mimimalhappylife.com

It’s Tea o’clock…

If I say I like tea, that would be an understatement. I absolutely love tea and this post is about why I love it so much.

I was a small school going girl. As both my parents were working, mornings were the busiest time of the day. Our breakfast would usually be a glass of milk while tying shoe laces and a roll of parantha in hands on our way to school. We would take lunch separately in our respective friend circle. For dinner, like any other Indian mom, my mother would serve hot meal to us first and later she would eat. In nutshell none of our meals were together. We would never sit together as a family for any of our meals but for evening tea. Evening tea time would be the time when all four of us (mom, dad, brother and me) would sit down and discuss our day, we would crack jokes, tease each other. For me it was the happiest time of day. I love tea not just for the taste of it (which is Awesome) but more for its social aspect. So when I say I am craving tea maybe I’m actually craving for those happy memories.

So I am a night owl specially when it comes to studies… I used to do combined studies with my friend for exams and we would study whole night before exam (our only preparation for exam)…. obviously this needed superhuman skills or something to keep us awake and TEA would come to our rescue… we would have multiple cups to remain alert… and when one of us would go in kitchen to prepare tea other one would get short nap… and in the morning when we finally got up to go for exam our bedside would have at least 12 empty cups. Among many other factors to which I owe my grades, Tea is definitely the most important one (I promise I got really good grades). Many such happy memories pop up when I think of tea. Join the conversation below and comment your happy tea time memory…

Newborns & Diapers

As soon as the little one enters the world, the new mom is bombarded with thousands of advice and my experience was no different. I being a new mom myself faced the inflow of million of advice when my son came into this world and the first very obvious one was “NO DIAPERS” for newborns. Now I am kind of person who would do things if they seem logical and this “NO DIAPERS” principle didn’t hit the right chord with me. So I used diapers for my baby from very first day of his birth. Now my baby was born in peak winters and given the weather, he was in layers of clothes at any given time. Had I followed the traditional “NO DIAPER” rule, I would have to remove easily 5 to 6 layers and bedding every time he pees and believe me newborns pees A LOT. I figured it was way too risky and cumbersome to stick with cloth nappies, risky because I couldn’t let my baby lie in wet clothes for long and cumbersome because you know Zillion layers to change, so I went with diapers. I followed a diapering regime to make sure that my baby do not get any rashes or infections, I would change his diapers every 2 hours in initial 2 months of his life and afterwards I increased the duration to 3-4 hours between diaper changes. Also before putting on a fresh diaper, I would wipe down the area clean with a damp cotton cloth and would let the area air dry for about 5 minutes, then would apply some coconut oil and then would put on a fresh diaper. I never faced any issue of rashes for my son, so I guess this worked for me. Diapers are hands down very convenient but they are not the most cost effective solutions and they aren’t something mother earth would love. So to reduce the environmental waste that diapers create and to save my pocket, I gave Cloth Diapers a shot and as soon as I started using them, I was hooked. Well kind of, I would still use disposables at night and for long stretches when we were away from home. I switched to Cloth Diapers when my son was 4 months old and I went from like 10 diapers a day to just 1 or max 2 diapers a day. I purchased few cloth diapers online and I got extra inserts. I change cloth diaper every 3 hours and wash the soiled one and reuse it. Yes it is a little extra effort but it is worth the pain for it is saving money and environment. I am not an expert on parenting and all this stuff. This is just what I did and what worked for me.