But there is one thing my pantry/canner can't do for me that my freezer can: hold quick meals.
When I make dinner, I rarely just think of that one meal. I almost always double (or triple) the recipe because my time is limited and because there are just some nights I don't feel like cooking.
Does that ever happen to you?
Kids + school + maintaining a home = exhaustion. Am I right? A long while ago, I stopped beating myself up over the fact that sometimes I feel utterly depleted. So, I aim to be proactive and anticipate those days by taking dinner out of the equation. Sure, every once in a blue moon we head out to a restaurant. Or have sandwiches for dinner. Or waffles. But, having some extra meals in the freezer takes the burden (and dare I say, dread?) away and assures me that we're eating something healthy. Exhaustion - guilt over the exhaustion = sanity (for me).
How's my math?
If you haven't discovered this little trick, I encourage you to try it. And, just to give you an idea of what I'm talking about here, I opened my freezer and took some pictures to show you what this looks like.
The door to my upright freezer holds most of the meals (the door means no digging and labels can be easily read). Yes, we eat a lot of yogurt. Yes, I used to make yogurt myself. Now I buy it. And I buy bread, too. I've also learned I can't do everything. And, I'm okay with that.
These life-savers contain...
With some homemade rolls, tortillas and pie crusts ready in the freezer as well, a meal is easily within reach. Here are some examples of what's there and what it will become...
Other meals are easier to freeze in baking dishes and so I keep some of those on hand as well. These are the truly quick ones (as long as you remember to set it out to thaw in the morning, of course).
Keep in mind, I didn't make these all at once. My, no. When I make a meal that's easy to double or triple, I do just that. The extra finds it's way to my dear friend, my freezer.
She's always looking out for me. Now let yours look out for you, too.