Running your own business is awesome. You get to set your own schedule, manage your own day, be your own boss… As anyone who has their own business will tell you, however, there are definitely some, well… complications when it comes to managing your time and living your life. The main challenge, I find, is gaining any kind of balance between work, and home. The second biggest challenge (and quite closely related to the first) is making time for everything.
People ask me all the time how I manage to find the time to run a business and be a mom. I always just laugh… I feel like that’s the top of a mountain I’ve only just begun climbing, and thus far I’ve done quite a bit of stumbling. There are a few things, however, that do buy me time and make life easier, and I thought they might be worth sharing here for all the other parents who struggle to find enough time for everything each week!
Dinners were, for YEARS, a guilty, crazy mess at the Tripple house. Each morning my goal would be to cook something wholesome, healthy, and nutrient-packed for my little brood. Each evening, around 5:30, I’d be popping another frozen pizza or chicken nuggets into the oven, muttering my vows to do it better the next day. Between the beginning of the day and the end, things would just… happen… and it was nearly impossible to plan a meal, get to the store with kids in tow, prepare it, and serve it, head-held-high, to my family. And then I found (now please, please don’t judge me till you’ve heard me out!) PEAPOD!!!
Yes, Peapod. That cute truck that delivers groceries to lazy people. At least, that’s what I had always thought Peapod was, right up until the day I broke down and put in my first order.
Do you know what? It was just. plain. awesome.
- It forced me to meal plan, which is actually a very effective way of saving money… no more last-minute, pre-made meals from the Target “deli” area.
- It limited my trips to Target each week, which cut down on little impulse purchases. Do you notice a little Target theme going? I’m a bit addicted… : )
- The produce is incredible. I seriously can’t find produce that nice in any local store. That was the thing I was the most nervous about when I started, and it turned out to be my very favorite part of ordering with Peapod!
- They deliver the groceries to your door. And not only that… they DELIVER THE GROCERIES TO YOUR KITCHEN COUNTER!!!! Do you know what that means? It means that I’m not making five trips from my car to my kitchen, kids complaining all the way, as I lug a bunch of groceries in.
- The delivery means that you’re not dragging your kids to the store to do a big grocery shop. That’s half the reason I dreaded grocery shopping in the first place!
- All-in-all, it isn’t really that expensive. I’d say our grocery bills are just about the same as they were before, but now it’s intentional, healthy food instead of a big mix of craziness in an over-full cart. : )
- You can set your delivery time for almost any waking hour. We usually have our groceries delivered between 6 and 8 a.m. on Monday mornings… just in time for the week to start! By 9 a.m. every Monday, I’ve got my fridge cleaned out and filled up with fresh, healthy food and dinner ingredients stocked up and ready. It’s an amazing feeling. And I still have energy to spare, because I didn’t just spend a frazzled hour at the store running from aisle to aisle trying to figure out what to make for dinner.
As far as meal planning goes, I discovered a truly awesome app:
It’s the Real Simple, “No Time to Cook?” app, and the recipes are totally awesome. Fresh, healthy, and totally delish… I pick out my favorites each week, click “add to list”, then copy the shopping list from the app right into my Peapod order online… it pulls everything up that’s a match and I can choose from those items. Pretty much the easiest thing ever, and totally yummy! The app is $4.99, which is nothing close to what you’d pay for a cookbook of the same caliber.
Tuesday night we had fish tacos. They were ah-mazing.
Last night we had Mediterranean Chicken:
Tonight we’re having Butternut Squash with Couscous and Chutney. I cannot WAIT to taste this one!!!
Friday night we’re having a Spring-Mix salad with Chickpea Patties. We’ve had this one before and it’s really, really good.
So that’s my one-two punch: Peapod and “No Time To Cook”. How awesome is that?!?
And just one more quick picture…
My 5 year old and his cousin are SO into chess right now. It’s the coolest thing. The other day, the two of them had found a sweet, secret spot at my parents’ house to battle it out. It was raining cats and dogs, and the lighting was pretty awesome, so I snapped a quick pick:
Aren’t they cute? They take chess VERY seriously…