Hello and welcome back to my meal planning for the 27th installment of my monthly meal planners. This installment covers the entire month of December 2014 and includes delicious meal and dessert suggestions for Christmas too! This FREE monthly budgeted meal planner covers the whole month at once. With fall here, this meal planner includes more oven and crock pot recipes for variety, flavor, and time savings. This month sees the introduction of a lot of new recipes with bring a variety to the meals. I am continuing to add recipes I have found linked up to my Monday Thoughtful Spot Weekly Blog Hop and my other special places. Can you spot the additions I used this month? Another great place you can find some of these recipes is on my cooking boards on Pinterest too, but remember, if I use the recipe in the meal planner, I give credit back to it because users will need to click the link on the meal planner to get the recipe directly from its source.
As with previous months, the included meals may need to be altered because our fresh veggies and fruits in our area might not match yours and our veggie choices at dinner might not match your choices and I would not want you to be spending budget on fruits and veggies that are out of season for you or that you would (or could) not eat. The list is provided in a format that you can use to check your pantry, cabinets, fridge and freezer to see what you have left over or still have (like spices and dry goods) and then add what you need to your family shopping lists. Shopping lists are provided in a weekly, monthly, and master list formats.
As a side note, please also remember that I strive to include some sort of fruit or vegetable component in all meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even some of the desserts too, so please remember that if no specific one is listed it is because everyone lives in different places and I cannot truly tell what will be available everywhere based on the time of year and I would hate to have you spend more of your budget to get things readily available to me when you could just as easy use your local ones. Fresh fruits and veggies can be a struggle to get into our growing children, but I am finding that as Beck and Elizabeth get older they are trying different fruits and veggies. It helps too that they are both finding new seasonal favorites too. With summer in full swing we are fortunate enough to have a very wide range of squashes from our local farmer. Sometimes I will even post photos of our local farm veggies and produce on my Instagram as well when they are delivered each week.
Meal Planner Blanks
As with any meal planner, there will be days that you just want to eat something different or do not agree with the day that it was placed on, especially since each family has lots of different Christmas traditions that might not see them in the house each night for dinner. To help accommodate that, please use the included blank meal planner spaces as you need them throughout the meal planning process. Hopefully this component will help those that use the planner but tend to vary days and meals still have a complete meal planner at their disposal.
Continuing this month is a second, flexible one. All the same meals are provided in a cut and paste format. The monthly planners are provided as blanks and all the meals are provided on strips that you cut out. Now you and your family can plan out your meals however you want to. All the meals are provided, you just have to cut them out and plan them how you wish to eat them, and the best part is, you can just skip meals you have other plans for and write in your own too!
Christmas Meals and Desserts
Christmas is this month! I love to cook and this year Christmas Dinner is at our house. I have created a list of menu items and desserts that I will be making this year. I have included those recipes in this meal planner for those that wish to make these dishes as well, but they are not included in the budget for the month. I love to cook and bake and this is the season of giving, so I tend to bake a lot. Then, I have included various leftover recipes in the meal planner as well to make good use of those leftovers as I plan to have lots of leftovers to make it less stressful while the children and family enjoy Christmas. Again, I want to be clear that I do not include Christmas dinner and desserts in my monthly budget, so you might go over the intended budget this month if you include them.
Because each family has different dietary goals and needs it can be hard to find recipes that meet everyone’s needs. In our family we have started drifting away from beef because of the problems that it causes with my health problems, but we do eat it in a limited capacity. I would also love to include more fish recipes, but my husband is very allergic to fish, so we cannot use fish either. As you can imagine, we have developed a taste for chicken and turkey meat recipes. I have included my own recipes here and there, but this month I will be using the following Enchanted Homeschooling Mom original recipes…
- E.H.M. Family Tacos (Slow Cooker Style)
- Jill’s Spaghetti Sauce
Budget Note: This meal planner includes all of our family of four’s monthly menus for the next 5 weeks for the month of December 2014. We typically spend $300-$350 (not including sundry items) for one month of food for our family of four plus five dogs, but this will not include the Christmas Menu or Dessert items this month. Since we live very rural, if I do not continue to plan well in advance our family can end up spending more on the gasoline for our trip than we do for the food that we are actually there to purchase, especially with gas prices seemingly rising all the time around us. When we do our shopping once a month it is a big haul, but we do pick up fresh fruits and vegetables from a local farmers weekly and get milk, select dairy, and bread about every 2 weeks. For the desserts we will be budgeting about $25 – $50 on top of the budget mention above.
So, without further ado, please find the following components of this month’s interactive meal planner:
- Meal Planner for 12/1/14 – 12/6/14
- Meal Planner for 12/7/14 – 12/13/14
- Meal Planner for 12/14/14 – 12/20/14
- Meal Planner for 12/21/14 – 12/27/14
- Meal Planner for 12/28/14 – 12/31/14
- December Flexible Meals
- December Flexible Meal Calendars
- December Blank Week
- Dessert Menu for December 2014
- Dessert Calendar for December 2014
- Select E.H.M. Recipes
- Christmas 2014 Menu
- Christmas 2014 Dessert Menu
- December Master Ingredients List
- Fill In the Blank Ingredients List – Entire Month
- Fill in the Blank Ingredients List – Weekly
- Blank Family Shopping List (Food, Sundries, you name it included)
- Blank Costco Shopping List
I am happy to continue to share previous month’s meal planners. I keep all the recipes, planners, and lessons on my blog, so please make sure to check out my Meal Planning Resources Page for more tips and recipes for when it comes to monthly shopping from month’s past!
If you use these meal planners, I hope it helps make your planning a little easier, or at the very least, give you some new recipes. I will continue to share my monthly meal planners with you each month as I create them for my family. Also, if you have a good smoothie or dessert recipe please let me know. I am always looking for good recipes that are cost effective to keep the meal planning fun, delicious, and as new as I can.
Click the link below to download a copy of my Monthly Meal Planner for FREE!
Thank you for taking the time to look at my December 2014 monthly meal planner with Christmas 2014 menus. Be sure to stop by next month for the next installment of my month meal planning here on Enchanted Homeschooling Mom!
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