You Can Be a Smiling Cook
My never-ending struggle with dinnertime is a legend now. I’m in a slump right now, admittedly, but over the last year and a half I have had bursts of energy and creativity with dinner that have kept my family eating healthy, our grocery spending manageable, and and me in a good mood because I’m sticking to a routine.
What works, as you will read anywhere and everywhere, is having a plan.
SmilingCooks.com is a service that helps you plan dinner a month at a time. With an interactive calendar function, you can choose recipes and number of servings for each day, then save all that information and print out a grocery shopping list so you are armed with information before you even leave your house to go to the store. The service was created by Tarah Sproul, a mother of two who has beaten cancer and works in the healthcare field. Not wanting to sacrifice wholesomeness to the altar of saving time or money, Sproul built SmilingCooks.com as a resource for busy families who want to eat healthy meals.
I tried to use the subscription service ($5.95 per month) in the way it was intended. Really, I did. But because I tried it during the end of the school year and the early summer, our family’s schedule was chaos, and I didn’t plan well around it. I managed to make a few of the recipes just to make sure they were indeed easy and tasty, which they were. But I failed to take advantage of the cool interactive menu planning function, which really allows the user to customize the recipe choices to a degree that another menu planning service I have used does not.
In other words, SmilingCooks.com lets you use your brain, and my brain was not at all interested in planning our menus over the last few months. I can barely drag myself to the grocery store these days, much less take that extra step of planning ahead.
While I am in no hurry for time to advance any faster than it already does, I do look forward to the return of school and with it, a regular, dependable schedule, when I will know ahead of time what nights everyone will be home to eat dinner. And I am glad there are services like SmilingCooks.com that help moms like me make plans.
I received a trial subscription to SmilingCooks.com to facilitate this review.