Yet Again … I’m Doing It All Wrong

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I read an article today in the News & Observer about the “ten habits of happy cooks” — things that people who like to cook have in common.

Do I do any of these things?

Uh, no. I do not.

I do like to cook, though, so I just wanted to put up a short post to say that if, like me, you are unable to make a meal plan, think ahead, keep a running shopping list, and clean while you go (that last one especially kills me, it just does not happen in my life), there is still hope.

My solution is to keep things really simple.

Figure out a few things you like and just make those things. Pick things that are reasonably healthy, that are affordable to you, that you (and the people you are feeding, if you are feeding people other than yourself) are willing to eat on a regular basis, and that are easy to make and easy to clean up.

Things you make frequently are always going to be easier because you don’t have to think so much about them. It also makes shopping easier because you can narrow your focus to the things you usually buy.

When you get sick of eating the same thing, stop making that thing and find something else that is equally good/cheap/ healthy/easy.

And that is my solution. It seems easier than trying to be organized. That just feels like a losing battle.

2 Responses to “Yet Again … I’m Doing It All Wrong”

  1. tommfranklin Says:

    Who the bloody h3ll “turn(s) on the oven or fire up the grill without thinking a couple of meals ahead.” I’m lucky if I have that night’s meal thought all the way through when I turn on the oven.

    My favorite, though was #7, “They clean as they go.” HA!

    — Tom

  2. lessisenough Says:

    Yeah, I feel like there are people who do this naturally, and they are the ones who write books on being organized. Touch a piece of paper only once! Put things away as soon as you are done using them! They don’t understand why this is hard for people. It’s like skinny people writing diet books. Just eat less. But telling people who don’t naturally work like this to just do these things is not helpful.

    The only organizing book I’ve read that was actually useful is called It’s Hard to Make a Difference When You Can’t Find Your Keys. The main point of that book is to have you figure out why you want to be more organized, what kinds of problems your lack of organization is causing, and to address those specific things.

    So for instance it helped me solve the problem of constantly running 5-10 minutes late. (I figured out that I do not like being 10 minutes late and there’s nothing wrong with getting somewhere early, you can just chillax for a few minutes until it’s time to go inside, so I added 15 minutes to the time I need to leave and now I’m pretty much always on time. Unless I’m taking the bus and there are bus complications, which seems to happen fairly regularly. What can you do.)

    I don’t bother to clean up while I go because it’s hard for me to think like that. I’m modal — I’m either cooking or I’m cleaning. I can’t cook and clean at the same time. Instead I build in regular time during the week to clean up everything and that works much better. I make a huge mess and then I clean it all up. Problem solved.

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