Do you ever get into a “chicken rut?”

That’s how a colleague of mine described her cooking routine - a repeated use of chicken in the kitchen, night after night, much like the myriad of ways the character “Bubba” in Forrest Gump cooked shrimp.

It’s understandable to find yourself in a cooking rut. Families are busy. It’s tough to find time for meal planning, grocery list building and recipe finding when parents also have to take kids to soccer practice and youth group as well as help with the night’s homework.

It’s enough to make your head spin!

But dinnertime can serve an important role in a family’s health. We neglect it at our own peril.

There are the obvious benefits that come from serving nutritious meals – but did you know mealtime can also bolster a family’s emotional health? It’s true: research has found that children of families who eat dinner together regularly have improved communication, fewer problems with drugs and alcohol and receive higher grades. In short, the intentional time spent together at dinner helps develop a protection factor against all important risk behaviors.

So how can moms and dads help make dinnertime a fun time without all the preparation stress?

Focus on the Family has teamed up with eMeals to help solve this dilemma.

eMeals is a subscription-based online meal planning service that provides weekly meal plans based on a customer’s eating style, family style and preferred grocery store. Each week, eMeals provides seven dinner recipes along with organized grocery shopping lists that incorporate weekly grocery store sales where possible. By taking most of the work out of meal planning, eMeals helps take the stress out of meal prep and will help get your family around the dinner table more often.

My colleague started using eMeals as a resource to help her in the kitchen – and it helped get her out of her chicken rut. Let me share what she thought about the service in her own words:

I love the fact that it easily lists the ingredients you need with even the prices for certain stores.  The price information is great because we really try to stick to a food budget. The weekly email reminds me to think outside the box.

Her report is heartening. I’m glad we’re able to team up with companies that provide such practical and useful services to today’s busy families. After all, oftentimes it’s the little things that go a long way when it comes to maintaining family health. I encourage you to look into eMeals at www.focusonthefamily.com/emeals. By using our link, you can receive 15 percent off your initial subscription. 

Please let us know what you think!

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