The Student Became the Teacher

The Student Became the Teacher

How does a week go by so fast? It seems like yesterday we were talking about grilling baskets but here we are one more week into our summer! I hope you’re enjoying your summer and finding new ways to experience life. Where ever you may be right now, know that you are loved {by me}!

For those who may not know, our daughter graduated from Baylor University a year ago and is living with us right now. She is neurotic about budgeting and knows she can pay off those school bills faster if she lives where the rent is free!  She’s getting ready to leave for Waco in the morning and I’m so sad that I’m not going with her! 

I’ve been thinking about her time in Waco and how she absolutely flourished while she was there. She knew what she wanted, was very disciplined, and went after it with every fiber in her being. That doesn't mean it was “easy” for her though. She was always a homebody and here she was a thousand miles away. Her brother studies once and aces a test. She, on the other hand does well on daily work but has to work her tail off to get good grades on a test. 

Another major change for her was that she had always had a job since she was 15. She enjoyed working and building her independence. Immediately she was buying her own basic toiletries and I had to remind her that she was still our dependent child and we still provided those basic necessities.

As she headed off to Baylor for her last three years of college, she hit the ground immediately looking for a job. And then she kept looking. And kept looking. Can you imagine the stress for someone as driven as her? It was awful! After a few phone calls with her in tears, we talked about her budget and she realized that if she stuck to a strict budget she could focus on school and not need a job. She could still enjoy being part of the riding association {pretty sure her horse, Bubba, helped her get through college...and now he is part of our family in MN} and enjoy a few extras, but not much. She thought it over and decided it could work for her. 

What she did next utterly floored me! She did a little shopping and figured out that she could spend $40 or less per week and have her entire week of meals prepared. What? Who is that disciplined? She was! She often shopped on Sunday and prepared all her meals. That was typically the only day she ate out. She prepared two meals a week. One was lunch, and one was supper. She had the budget for a few snacks and a breakfast shake. Can you tell that she is easy to please and doesn’t need a huge variety? Her focus was laser sharp and the lack of variety in food for a week didn’t bother her. She changed it up every week and always stuck to her budget. 

To give you an idea of how simple she made meal prepping she simply decided her meat or fish serving, her vegetable serving, and then a lighter grain serving (rice, couscous, noodles, etc.) There was occasionally a one-dish meal like spaghetti, but most meals were three items divided separately into meal prep containers she found locally. Nothing was over complicated. Food was always ready in a blink When she had a few minutes between classes to run to her apartment. She didn’t make excuses, she just made it work and work WELL!

I’m trying to take a page from her book right now and realize I don’t need a huge variety every week. Can you believe how meal prepping done even close to this would save a lot of money and provide much healthier meals than having to grab the fast food at the last minute? And you know the saying about “the freshman 15”? Not her! She lost some weight and stayed very healthy and fit! 

Over the next few weeks I’m going to try her method of meal prep with a slight twist. (I don’t think I’m to the point where I could eat only two meals for a week straight!) I hope you will share some of your favorite meal prep ideas with me that help with time saving and keep the options a little healthier. I might even share some of the tips you share with me over the next couple weeks! Also, drop a note in the comments to let us know if you meal prep a week at a time, a month at a time {so not there!}, or not at all! If you do meal prepping, how long have you stayed with it? Really! I want your ideas and input and I’d love to share it in an upcoming post.