Menu Planning - 2 Free Printables

After the holidays, we're all trying to get back into the swing of our regular routines, and some of us also want to add on a new good habit or two.  My new habit is actually an old one that I'd like to renew: Menu Planning!

Menu planning will save you precious time, and keep you on track when making grocery shopping lists. It also saves frustration when someone asks, "What's for dinner?"

One of the first things I like to do, is make a schedule for the main ingredient: chicken on Monday, beef on Tuesday, pork on Wednesday, etc.  On occasion, I also like to throw in a meatless meal; and usually on Sundays in our house we have FFY (fend for yourself) where we usually eat up any leftovers.  Many times, I plan ahead to make a larger portion of say, Baked Chicken, so that I can use the extra meat for another recipe, like Chicken Fajitas!  Mmm!

Here's my sample menu plan for this week:
Sunday: FFY
Monday: Baked Chicken, baked potatoes, and salad
Tuesday: Beef stew in the slow cooker
Wednesday: Chicken tacos (use cooked chicken and salad leftovers)
Thursday: Breakfast-for-dinner: Pancakes and bacon
Friday: Baked Tilapia, baked sweet potato, and zucchini
Saturday: Going Out! (we won't be home that day)

To help you get started, I made these two Menu Planners for you to print out and use right away!
Simply right-click on each image, then Save. I usually try and save to my desktop so it's at my fingertips.  Hint: You can slip the menu planner into a clear sheet protector, and write on it with a dry erasable pen; then simply wipe it off to use next week!

Of course, I'm offering them to my readers for FREE, and all I ask is that you use them for your personal use ONLY, and make sure you pin back to this original blog post when you share.

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Gallery Wall - Finding a Theme

Do you ever see decor that you really like, but hesitate trying to incorporate it into your own home?  I'm like that sometimes, and it took me a long while to put together this gallery wall.

Of course, I wanted it to be in my OWN style, not just a copy of someone else's wall.  And naturally, I'm on a tight budget, so I was looking to use things I already had on hand.   I experimented with making a gallery wall at Christmastime, and found it was not as complicated as I thought it would be!
Here's a pic of my Christmas 2015 Gallery Wall:
Christmas tree cutouts & chalkboard sign on left are my creations.
Credit for Wagoneer print: Lucy @ CraftberryBush (click link for free printable)
Merry Christmas sign from Target.  Red lantern is a family heirloom.
 As you can see, I kept it simple, and tried to keep with a theme.  That's how I discovered that I already had items for my new gallery wall! All I had to do was shop my own home for these keys and doorknobs that speak "Home" to me.

Here are the elements of my gallery "Home" wall:
I found these images online, and printed them out to fit my existing frames.
I just LOVE glass door knobs!
Another doorknob and pics of keys, incorporating some of my favorite color hue: teal blue!
The B monogram on the right is my creation. B purchased at Walmart, covered with burlap, glued onto stained faux pallet with some keys added in keeping with the theme.
Teal blue arrow painted onto brown board is my creation, as is the Gather on burlap/chalkboard frame.
Cross and small mirror were handmade gifts from a friend; Always & Forever sign I copied from one I saw at Target.
Large key on left was thrifted.  Plate on right is vintage German from Bavaria.
Having a theme finally made it simple for me to pull together things I already owned, and make this wall tell our story:  B is our family monogram; Cross is for our faith in Jesus; Always & Forever for our lasting, loving marriage; arrow because we are following God's path for our lives; and doorknobs and keys, because no matter where we live, it's "home" if it's filled with the ones we love.

Maybe this is also fitting for us:

If you'd like to share your gallery wall, head on over to my Facebook page!  I'd love to know what inspired you, and how you decided what to use!
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