Dinner – Done!

Nicole Botelho, Pre-K Team LeadBag O' Tricks

Since parenthood began my TO-DO list has never been fully accomplished. Far too often I feel like there is NEVER enough time and too many things to do. Especially during the week. Every day after work I rush home in hopes of avoiding some traffic.  After eight hours of work ALL I want to do is hug, play and interact with my babies and NOT have to hear them cry while they have no choice but to be stuck in traffic for 40 minutes. As soon as we get home our little ones will need dinner, baths, their teeth brushed, books read, and snuggles (one of my favorite parts of the day).. But these things need to be done all before an appropriate bedtime or else morning time can be a mess.

Unfortunately this is the reality of many full-time working parents so we have to find any way to make life a little easier - such as packing some games, books and snacks for the car ride home. But one of the biggest ways to make our evenings stress free is by having dinner already made or at least prepped. If you can afford the extra cost hiring an in home-chef during the week is something I definitely would advise. There are many options and I’ve only heard good things from the families who chose to do this. While someone is preparing dinner for their family they are able to give their full attention to their children!


But not everyone can afford hiring a nanny or chef (including myself). So what I’ve chosen to do is find quick, simple and healthy dinners. Many dinners that I can fully prep the night before when the kids are all asleep. If you do not own a crock-pot/ slow cooker I definitely think you should order one ASAP! Hahaha. Especially during winter I make a variety of casseroles and different crock-pot recipes every week. There are so many recipes that the possibilities are endless! My beef or chicken stews are my children's favorite crock-pot recipes. And as far as casseroles go shepherd's pie is definitely a hit. I prepare the casserole the night before so I can just put it in the oven when I get home from work. The crock-pot is my favorite though because I toss everything into it  in the morning and let it cook all day. When we get home the house smells so good and dinner is done!!

I typically like to involve my children in preparing dinner and make it a fun activity but there is only so much we can do with an infant or toddler in the house! Hahah Since dinner preparation can be time consuming it can easily add unwanted stress especially when I have a toddler in my hand or by my feet as I’m trying to cook. So having dinner already prepared is a huge relief!