4 Days, 12 Meals

If you do the math, 12 meals in 4 days makes perfect sense. But clearly I am either very, very pregnant or just plain crazy, because in the last 4 days (starting Thursday evening and lasting until this morning), I made 12 extra meals, which clearly does not make sense. And these were not just any old meals. These were casseroles and marinades and sides that, to some extent, involved a heck of a lot more cooking/prep than I normally do. And did I mention the number of loads of dishes? Probably close to 12 as well!

Here is what I looked like Friday evening, three meals in:

Notice the slightly exasperated expression, but decent clothes and make up to boot.

There are no pictures of me from yesterday or this morning. There is only this:

This is, perhaps, the most beautiful sight I have seen in days. This is my completed list of freezer-ready dishes made, minus the Sloppy Joes that I did Thursday night, giving this whole crazy project its kick start. I did not go in the order I planned, nor I did go this adventure alone. Ben was an excellent chef’s assistant, especially when my pregnant back and belly could not take one more minute of standing at the stove, whisking butter, flour, and various seasonings to make a white sauce or base for a cheese dish. He was supposed to be working on homework all weekend, but he is not only helpful but also kind; he told me that family stuff just has to come first sometimes.

And really, that is what this whirlwind of weekend work was all about….getting ready to expand our little family. I meant to do something like this before Harrison was born but never did. This time around, the idea of cooking ahead was again rolling around in my brain, but like so much else, kept getting forgotten or overlooked in the day-to-day chaos. But this weekend HD was off to the farm with Grandma and Grandpa Welsch, so I took full advantage of my 56 free hours and went to town in my teeny, tiny kitchen. If you know my relationship with my house, you know that I consider my kitchen to be the structure’s Achilles’ heel for its lack of storage and counter space. Without a toddler around to disturb the work in process, though, my kitchen and I managed to pull off a tremendous feat. Did I mention that I also made a slow cook roast for supper last night and fresh rolls to make said roast into BBQ sandwiches? And that I’m making meatballs tonight? Surely this must be some form of nesting!

Friday morning, as I pushed my very full, very heavy shopping cart around the grocery store, I thought I must have lost my mind. I mean, I was even buying onions to saute and put in dishes – something I never do. But here I am, Sunday afternoon, with a freezer chest full of what I hope are tasty dishes that we will get to enjoy in the coming months after BWNo.2 arrives. That is perhaps the funniest and the looniest part of this whole venture. With the exception of the mashed potatoes, we have never tried any of these specific recipes. But, as my very wise father pointed out, they will taste just fine simply because they will mean that we don’t have to cook on the days when we are dragging our tired bodies from one diaper change to the next. Works for me!

And now, on to that final load of dishes…

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