Where do I schedule, 'make dinner?'

Discussion in 'PUBLIC: Discuss the GTD Methodology' started by LanaDorazio, Apr 29, 2019.

  1. LanaDorazio

    LanaDorazio Registered

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    I am a full time 'operator of the world,' more specifically my family's world. We own a company that my husband operates from our home office (separate from the house,) and I run our large property, family, guest house, and many, many events we host in our home. We moved into this large property 6 months ago and I am still getting a handle on how to manage it all. I have cleaners every week, and a landscaper, but it's still kind of like operating a bed and breakfast with the amount of activity every day, and entertaining. (For instance we have had big events the last 3 weekends, with one Easter event for 60 people, soccer party for 40, and 15 year old birthday party with 20.)

    Where do I put the big things like, 'cook meals,' 'laundry,' clean house?' These are things I have to do every day in some capacity to keep things moving, but then also all the other moving parts of kids, company, and other parts of life. I have always struggled with realistically planning enough time in the day to get all of those things done, and do next actions, which need doing too, but at the expense of dinner, which 2 teenage boys and a hard working husband need every day.

    I'm not June Cleaver, but I do take pride in my work as our homemaker and want to run things like a business would so we have time and energy to hang out with the boys, play a game of pool in the evenings, and have friends over at the drop of the hat with food and drinks ready to go. I'd appreciate any help with knowing do I put 'cook dinner' on my calendar each day with a time, along with other household jobs? When things go awry, and we end up ordering pizza it makes me feel bad, so I've hesitated doing it.

    Thanks for any advise in the wild world of homemaking.
     
  2. TesTeq

    TesTeq Registered

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    For recurring tasks I would prepare weekly checklist divided into daily checklists that I would review each morning to prepare a daily schedule.
     
  3. mcogilvie

    mcogilvie Registered

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    I learned to cook my first year of college. I cooked for 30 guys at least once a week for 4 years, and served as kitchen manager one year. Our kids now have kids, and I continue to cook all dinners at our house. A couple of tips:

    • The natural interval for meal planning is the week. You have to have a plan that will get you through the week, including some leeway for the unforeseen. If you plan on a weekly basis, you can move meals around if you need to.
    • Each day estimate how long approximately it takes to prepare a given meal, and work backwards from when you want to serve. Allow extra time.
    • Find recipes that minimize prep and can hold well until served.
    • Leftover main dishes are money in the bank. Stew, chili, roasts- anything that can be served twice.
    • Don’t worry too much about starches: you can cook potatoes, pasta or rice in less than 30 minutes. Vegetables are even quicker.
    • Always have meals you can make if everything goes to hell, even if it’s frozen pizza (with added toppings if you can). One of my favorite desperate meals is lemon pepper noodles tossed with tuna in olive oil. Add a salad and you’re good. Or sandwiches, fruit and salad. Or serve breakfast for dinner.
    • We recently redid our kitchen with a huge center island so people can hang out or help. Cooking dinner can be just as social as dinner itself.

    Notice I didn’t say anything about calendar or scheduling. Cooking dinner is applied gtd: plan as much as you need to, and as little as you can get by with. Hope this helps!
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
  4. Oogiem

    Oogiem Registered

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    A couple of suggestions that other have already mentioned

    Checklists for the housecleaning and maintenance tasks, daily, weekly, monthly and seasonally. And then look at and use them, my own problem :) When you have time you hit the weekly, monthly and seasonal items and even schedule a day or a few hours to keep up with them.

    A large freezer helps a lot with meal planning. We have a 2 big chest freezers for our own stuff and 4 additional ones for the for sale meat, that we can always take from too. I wrote a blog post about how I organize my freezer for ease of access, the trick is wine boxes.

    http://desertweyr.com/freezer-management/

    To take advantage of the freezer you need to plan for leftovers. We are in lambing now and I have zero time to cook. In the month before lambing I made lots of things that freeze well and can be cooked in a hurry. My goal is a hot nutritious meal with plenty of protein on the table in 15 minutes or less as we sometimes have only 30 minutes to eat before we head back out to the lambing pasture to help the sheep. These included cooked chicken wings, cooked and sliced chicken breast meat, smoked meats sliced and ready to go into tacos or a curry. Browned hamburger and onions, base for lots of meals, like sloppy joe's and tacos. Frozen pre-made spaghetti sauce, soups and stews. Spring roll, Asian meatballs, Middle Eastern meatballs with pine nuts (both great with rice or noodles). I also have an instant pot and I can cook a bunch of things in it from frozen to meal in an hour or so. I can put a chuck roast in from frozen and in an hour and a half have it fully cooked. Baked potatoes take only 8 minutes in the microwave. I make rice in big batches and store int eh fridge. I can heat up rice in 2.5 minutes. Rice takes 45 minutes to cook. I stock up on frozen veges so we can cook those quickly too, things like peas, corn and beans.
     
  5. andrew732

    andrew732 Registered

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    In terms of the classic GTD system, I would say that yes, "cook dinner" and any other items that must occur at a specific time are calendar items, as opposed to next actions, someday/maybe items, etc. Like others have said, recurring items like this are particularly suitable for entering on a special "daily recurring calendar" or similar list, and then supplemented as necessary by any supporting material or lists. Personally, I separate my calendar into a "one time calendar" --for things like appointments and meetings-- and a "recurring calendar" --for things that happen daily or weekly and that I don't want to individually enter for every occurrence.
     

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