here (she also has several other color options). I went online and printed out a calendar for the year, that's right, all of 2012. I found this particular calendar here. You should have seen Tyson's face when I told him that I was printing off an entire calendar for menu planning, poor guy thought that I was crazy enough to plan out our meals for the entire year all at once! I put all twelve pages in one sheet protector, that way I can see two months at a time, but I also have past months to refer back to for ideas. We tend to get stuck in a rut and repeat meals so this way I can see when we last ate something so that I can space them out better.
The meal ideas list is a lifesaver, it will save you so much time and frustration with your menu planning. I made a list a few years ago and recently updated it with new favorites. To make the list I went through my favorite cookbooks and printed recipes and wrote down the names of all of the recipes that we have tried and would like to make again. I wrote today's date in the corner and as we try new recipes I'll write them on the list and every few months I'll add them to the doc and reprint it. This is my current list of meal ideas if you want to some ideas. And if you would like any of the recipes just shoot me an email, I love to share! No secret recipes here!
Behind the meal idea list I have my recipes. No, I didn't type out the recipes from my cookbooks, I'm not that nuts. This binder organizes the recipes that I find online or friends give me. I like having systems for things and loose recipe cards and sheets of paper, pages take out of cooking magazines just make me crazy! I type them up, and put them in sheet protectors, organized by category. I use the sheet protectors for 2 reason; first they keep the recipe clean, and second, because I can keep things in alphabetical order. I love having things in alphabetical order, they are so easy to find that way. I've seen a lot of people just put the recipes that they printed off or clipped from a magazine right into sheet protectors and that would work great, but my OCD wants them all to be uniform in typeface and format so I retype them.