So here’s what I propose during my little experiment…and you can do this too:
- No more cooking dinner on weeknights or days that I know we’re going to be pressed for time
- No more using the oven in the Summer
- No cooking PERIOD during a reboot (www.rebootwithjoe.com)
- My dinner will cook itself without everyone waiting on me to cook it for them
- We will eat dinner together at the table as a family more often
- I will prepare meals with my kids (many hands make light work!)
- Eat more local, fresh produce and more meatless meals
- Have more time in the evenings with my family where I’m not frazzled
- Lose weight by changing my diet to an 80/20 ratio of primarily plant based/indulgence and walking thirty minutes a day (I’m gonna try!)
- My general health will improve from eating whole foods instead of drive thru or pizza on nights I ‘just don’t have time’
- Have lunches prepped and ready for me and dinner done when everyone gets home
- Do all this within a workable budget, achievable at a poverty-level income
- Streamline food storage system so the fridge and freezer stay organized
- During the process, share my insights on ways to eat more healthfully and locally
Okay, so what’s this experiment?
I’m writing a cookbook of pre-prepped, raw crockpot recipes. I will batch and freeze them in bags…and then anytime I want a meal made for me I just pick it out, thaw it and set it up in my crockpot. That’s it!
The good new for you is that you don’t have to write a cookbook…I’m going to be posting recipes, along with my trials and errors.
Also, I’ll be tracking my weight loss and budget.
In theory, I will be able to gain a big chunk of time in the evenings when I’d normally be cooking and cleaning up after dinner. I’ll save money by buying foods in bulk on sale and will explore affordable, local options and other sources of organic, gmo and chemical free products.
I’m saving time. I’m saving money…and hopefully I’ll look better in a tank top!
But so what? There are websites and cookbooks with recipes like this already published. What’s different about this site?
Well, I’ll tell ya what’s different…not everyone in my house embraces a whole-foods, plant-based diet. And while I am hoping to improve my entire family’s health by introducing more meat-free meals, I know that my teenage son is not going to go vegan. I also know that finding a working system for feeding everyone without being tempted by nachos and pop-tarts is a struggle for more people than just me.
What makes this site different are the recipe variations and substitutions (and the tips and tricks I share along the way) that allow you to eat healthier foods while not feeling you’re depriving yourself or your family…and you don’t have to go full-vegan, either.
I’m going to come clean right up front, too…I’m not a seasoned vegan. If you’ve never eaten a primarily plant-based diet, you’re in good company. I did do a reboot recently and found myself craving more fruits and veggies. If it weren’t for the reboot I probably wouldn’t be writing this now.
One night soon after my reboot ended I ate a bowl of ice cream and had horrible digestive pains. So I started paying attention to my body’s reaction to different foods and realized that processed stuff, meat and dairy not only caused discomfort but I also felt bloated and sluggish.
On top of this, I was managing my sugar and caffeine like an alcoholic trying to make it through a breakfast-to-last-call St. Patrick’s Day. Oops, I’ve had too much, drink some water, uh-oh I feel sluggish, get some coffee. It was getting ridiculous. And I spend my day sitting at my computer…so much fun when you’ve accidentally overdone it on the coffee and feel like you’re going to come out of your skin sitting still!
Anyway, being an informed eater and a huge fan of the documentary genre I know exactly what I should be eating and what the health benefits are. If you’re interested in finding out about these benefits (I don’t have space for all of them on the About page) I’ll send you to the experts:
(No affiliate, but Netflix is great for documentaries – one of the biggest reasons I keep my subscription. And let me say here that any and all affiliate links will be prominently noted.)
And that’s just the tip of the ‘ol iceberg. I’ll be compiling a more inclusive resource page with links to groups, websites and companies worth noting. Since this blog isn’t the actual cookbook, I also want to explore chemical-free personal care and cleaning products (including those you can DIY) and whether I have access to any local food hubs (delivery or pick up of farm-grown produce) in my area, as well as any resources for locating hubs nationally.
I want to hear from you, too! If you have a question or have always wondered about something like fennel or whether the programmable crockpot is worth the extra cost, I’d love to do the legwork. My goal for this site is to fine-tune the final book to meet your needs so don’t be surprised when I ask questions of you too!
An important aspect of dedicated life changes (and one usually neglected) is community and support. Someone to tell you, ‘You’ve got this!’ or ‘I know it’s hard but you can do it’ and remind you that you are strong can be the difference between success and failure, so comment on each other’s comments and start a conversation. Support each other. Hell, support me cause I’m sure I’ll need it!
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So, what do you say? Are you ready?