On May 2, 2015 by Kim
Meet OAMM member, Jill. She is a stay at home mom to five kids ages 8, 6, 5 and twins that are 3. She loves to cook healthy, clean food for her family. Luckily, the kids aren’t too picky and will eat about anything if they know that there will be dessert at the end.
How long have you been once a month cooking? How did you discover OAMM?
I’ve been once a month cooking for about 6 months, but I’ve actually only cooked 4 times. I mix my freezer meals with my regular cooking and they last longer than a month. I used to “bulk cook” my favorite meals, but when I discovered OAMM my mind was blown! I think I came across the site just from a Google search.
What circumstance pushed you to give once a month cooking a try? How has choosing to OAMC benefitted you and your family?
I have five small children, and I’ve found that the late afternoon hours are a very hectic time. Between homework, sports and those infamous toddler melt downs, cooking dinner felt impossible. Many mornings I would wake up and not feel like thinking about dinner so I would push it aside and by 5 pm I was sweating and would end up making something fast and not super healthy. OAMC has taken so much stress out of my life. I love that I can spend two days cooking, hang a list of my meals in my cabinet and decide in the morning what to take out on those busy days or days I don’t feel like cooking. I find that I’m more available to help with homework and spend time with my family rather than rushing to cook and feeling stressed.
What is your favorite OAMM resource or menu?
I am a pro member and I love swapping menus. I use the Paleo, Whole Foods and Gluten Free menus.
Give us a brief introduction to your kitchen.
I have a pretty large kitchen with a huge island. On my prep day I get a large cooler out and put all of my prepped foods in the cooler. I put the dry ingredients in a large tupperware container. The morning of my cook, I make sure my counters are clear and ready to go. I also hang all of the recipe cards on my cabinets and take them down when I’ve completed one. It gives me a sense of accomplishment! I use one counter for cooking, one for cooling and my kitchen table is used for the meals that are bagged and labeled. My favorite appliance to use is my food processor. It makes prep day a breeze.
What is the number one tip that you would give to a first timer?
Plan! I go through my cabinets with my shopping list and take note of exactly what I need and how much. I have always done my big cook days with at least 3 (sometimes all 5) of my kids at home. I plan strategically for them too. I usually have a list of things for them to do like play dough or a movie and a few times I even packed their lunch the night before so I wouldn’t have to stop my cooking to feed them:)
Tell us about a time when you experienced an OAMC or cooking fail.
This last cook, I read the directions wrong for the Beef and Tater Bites. I mixed the ingredients together with cooked ground beef and I couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong and why the bites wouldn’t stick together! I scratched the bite idea and just turned it into a casserole!!
Do you involve other people when you OAMC?
I do get a baby sitter when I shop for the cook day. I go to three different stores, and I really need to focus so I don’t bring my kids.
How is OAMC hard? How does it make your life easy?
OAMC is tiring and it takes a lot of organizing, but the pay off is tremendous. I recommend it to everyone I know!