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5 Tips for Quick Weeknight Dinners

You don’t have to be a busy parent to want dinner on the table ASAP at the end of the day. With having only a short window of time to get home, get settled and get dinner on the table, I’ve picked up these 5 strategies to help me through crunch time.

1. Use your freezer You have one, it’s free, use it. Think of meals that can be made in large batches such as soups, sauces, stews and meatloaf, meatballs and breaded chicken cutlets. Keep frozen vegetables for a quick side. It’s also good to have a few kids meals on hand for the nights they don’t want what you’re eating or you want to order in.

2. Make a meal plan Whether it’s for a few days or the entire week, meal plans will help you streamline your shopping and reduce time in the store. Consider a food delivery service such as Fresh Direct and shop anytime you have a few minutes.

3. Reduce dinner prep time Cut and prep your veggies on Sunday or if you’re using carrots one night and you need them later in the week cut them all at once (another benefit to a meal plan!). Most cooked grains also keep well for up to one week. I’ve found that having Monday’s dinner prepped on Sunday is very stress reducing!

4. Buy a slow cooker This may require prep time the night before, but nothing beats a ready-to-serve dinner when you walk in the door. Dinner doesn’t get much easier than these 3 Ingredient Tacos.

5. Keep a well-stocked pantry and freezer Have basics such as pasta, rice, beans, lentils, tomato sauce and veggies at the ready so you can always cook up a simple dinner.
What are some of your tips for quick weeknight dinners?

5 Tips to Avoid 5lbs this Holiday Season

With the holiday season in full swing it’s easy to overindulge on the delicious meals and desserts in your (very) near future. Help yourself avoid extra holiday pounds with these simple tips.

1. Eat before you go

If you’re starving when you arrive to your event you’re more likely to overeat. Help prevent this with a small snack or meal before you walk out the door.
2. Watch what you drink

Wine, beer and all of those artisanal house drinks come with a side of hefty calories. Intersperse sparkling water with lemon to keep your calories (and hangover) in check.
3. Keep up with your exercise routine

It’s easy to cancel your spin class for another holiday party, but good decisions lead to more good decisions and exercise will help burn calories and give you the energy you need for that extra party.
4. Step away from the cheese plate

And the other appetizers for that matter. Take a plate of apps, walk away and enjoy some conversation. You won’t mindlessly nibble and won’t be given dirty looks for cornering the area for yourself.
5. Indulge but don’t over indulge 

Let’s face it, you’re going to try many amazing dishes, but keep in mind that after 3-4 bites of a food it typically loses some appeal. So, enjoy all of your favorites, but say “no” to the second helping or the biggest piece of pie.