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I’m going to let you in on a little secret. There is a simple thing which you could be doing which will save you time, money and stress.

If you’re like me, you run your small business out of a home office (or if you’re really like me, your office is also your kitchen!) This means your day is probably full of distractions – dirty dishes in the sink, someone’s socks on the floor, figuring out what to make for dinner. When we work during regular hours, but also at all hours, it’s difficult to strike a balance between work-work and house-work. I’m going to admit that I haven’t got it all figured out yet – my worktime spills into my life long past 5pm and, unless I actually schedule it in, the floors don’t get mopped quite as often as they should.

But there is one thing I’m getting right! I menu plan. Do you?

I’ve actually been doing it for so long now that not doing it seems strange. Once a week, I sit down with a cup of coffee, my menu planner and I figure out what we’re going to eat for the next week. Then I use that plan to make my grocery list.

It means going to the grocery store once a week and way less impulse purchases. It means no more “what’s for dinner?” stress. It means way less food goes bad in the back of the fridge. It means healthier, more balanced meals and way less take out! And, if you weren’t convinced yet, all of that adds up to less money spent on food!

Less stress, healthier food, better finances = happier you!
Happier you = more time and energy to devote to your business and your life!

And, of course, I’d be remiss if I didn’t tell you that a great looking menu plan is a great addition to your kitchen! Here are a few DIY versions for inspiration:

Top Left: Chalkboard Menu Plan – Whipperberry 

Top Right: Recipe Board Menu Plan – Better Homes and Gardens

Bottom Left: Wipe-off Menu Board – Make & Takes 

Bottom Right: Magnetic Menu Planner – Omiyage Blogs

So that’s my secret! What’s your secret for saving time and reducing stress while managing a business and a household at the same time?

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about the author

Marisa Edghill has written 52 posts on Oh My! Handmade Goodness. Craft designer, author, washi tape aficionado and shopkeeper, Marisa runs Omiyage.ca, a sweet online shop filled with cute, clever and crafty things from around the world, but mainly Japan! Marisa has been inspiring others to make something crafty over on her blog Omiyageblogs.ca since 2010 and has been an OMHG writer since 2011.
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  • http://CreativeMamma.com Joy

    That’s awesome, Marisa!

    My secret – my husband does all the cooking :) I’ll forward this article to him – Love those finds!

    • http://ohmyhandmade.com/members/ohmyhandmade/ Jessika Hepburn

      @Joy You could make a fortune if you bottled up some way to make other husband’s good cooks…I know I would pay well for that!!!

  • http://apollinepoint.blogspot.com/ Apolline

    Hi Marisa! I also began planning my menus for the week : I save a lot of money shopping just once a week, and a lot of time too! Plus, I stress less :-)

    I also try make a monthly list for the rest : diapers, milk, water…for my little one, oil, rice, pasta, cans I can buy in bulk.

    Then, i try to clean almost everyday so the house doesn’t get dirty and I have little to clean!

    And I have to say my husband helps with the shopping and the cleaning :-)

  • http://omiyage.ca Marisa

    Joy! That’s a great secret! Perhaps your husband could run a little side business teaching other husbands to cook?? Though I have nothing to complain about – I cook, he cleans up after me!

    Apolline – you’re too good! Cleaning everyday sounds like a great way to stay ahead of the dirt! ;)

  • http://cellardoor22.blogspot.com/ Lois

    I do this too!! I started to do it as money was tight, and I found it a great way to save money on the weekly shop. Me and my fella weren’t communicating and would each go to the supermarket after work and bring back a load of stuff that didn’t go together – not to mention the special offers we couldn’t resist! It all adds up! But since we’ve been doing a menu it makes shopping much faster and cheaper.