Actually, it’s not very difficult to eat three meals a day. But cooking and serving and cleaning up after three meals a day? Every day? For an entire lifetime? For our family and family’s friends and our family’s friend’s friends? Well now, that is a lot of meals and a lot of food.
Food is a constant need and a never ending item on the to-do list. It’s kind of like the never ending laundry, only a bit more challenging because at least the hungry people can wear the same dirty socks. They cannot very well go without food.
I actually love to cook, and sometimes the three meals a day thing is still hard for me. So for all of you who don’t like to cook? I can’t even imagine how stressful it must feel to try to figure out dinner night after night when cooking is not fun for you.
So let’s talk about the challenge of feeding a family three meals a day. Then let’s talk about what to do to make it easier!
Why Eating Three Meals a Day is Hard
1. Because we make it harder than it has to be.
If you don’t like to cook and you spend a lot of time preparing difficult dishes and meals, you need to learn to pare down your work load and keep your meals simple. I love to cook, but I only love it when the food is simple to prepare and easy to clean up after. Complicated meals are for gourmet cooks, not for people who have to feed a family three meals a day, every day, forever and ever, amen.
How to make it easier:
Choose recipes that are super easy, but still made with real food. I have been learning to make real food main dishes that take about 5 or 10 minutes of prep, and it has been amazing! Look through this huge list of over 60 Simple Recipe links. These recipes have saved my family dinner time and again! The simpler I keep our meals, the easier it is to keep my family fed well. (Pssst, we’ve got a FREE eBook offer below, which provides you with 40 super simple recipes. Keep reading!)
2. Because we’ve taken the joy out of food.
Seeerrrriously we have so many delicious foods available to us. Either we have forgotten to appreciate it or we haven’t tried anything new for a while. We’ve gotten stuck in a rut, eating the same boring foods over and over.
How to make it easier: Go to the store when you’re hungry and pick up a few awesome (real) foods that you haven’t eaten in a long time. A fresh peach, a pack of blueberries, a bag of shrimp…whatever real food you love that you can afford and haven’t eaten in a while. Make a simple meal or snack out of these delicious foods and be reminded of all the incredible food God provides for us!
3. Because we think we have to do it ourselves and we don’t ask our family for help.
I fight all kinds of bitterness and grouchiness when I’m running like a mad woman to keep up with all the responsibilities of the day and my family is lounging around playing games on their phones. For the love, this is terrible for us and terrible for our kids. Cooking (and all household responsibilities) should be a team effort.
How to make it easier: Establish a new normal in which everyone who is available and capable helps with meal prep and clean up. Hand out jobs, delegate, and teach your family to work as a team with you in the kitchen. Imagine never having to grate cheese or load a dishwasher again. Glory hallelujah.
4. Because our attitudes are bad.
We are a blessed people who have been blessed with many blessings! We’ve got to remember this truth and choose to appreciate the food that keeps us healthy.
A little perspective: I have a friend fighting for her life against cancer right now. I guarantee that she would much rather “struggle through the challenge” of figuring out how to feed her family three meals every day instead of enduring the suffering and pain and illness she is currently experiencing. Let’s keep perspective and know that our normal, daily grind is actually a beautiful thing and nothing to complain about!
How to make it easier: Pray for God to change your attitude and perspective on feeding yourself and your family. Praise Him for taking care of you and for providing. After all, He always does! Take that attitude with you into the kitchen. Is it really so hard to do normal tasks on a normal day to keep our families healthy? It really and truly is not so hard.
We CAN put three meals on the table every day and it DOESN’T have to be difficult or stressful. Let’s continue learning ways we can pare down our real food kitchen work load so we can enjoy our families and our food too!