I have this tendency to think about all of the steps associated with a given task. For me, cooking isn't just cooking; it's also prepping, cleaning up, and keeping a shopping list up to date. The thought of all of this makes me tired before I even start, which is why I ate functionally when I was single: Rice, frozen vegetables, frozen fish, toss the plate in the dishwasher and begin again tomorrow with cold cereal.

Jer is more likely to get up and do stuff. He enjoys cooking and learning about food. He loves experimenting in the kitchen, mixing me drinks, holidays. When I go out for the evening, I come home to a Netflix "recently viewed" list littered with Anthony Bourdain and Alton Brown.

But he's not much for tidying up as he goes (or afterwards). This causes friction, and in the interest of good food with minimal conflict, we often resort to eating out. Eating out is great, except that a) it costs a lot of money, and b) we're no longer welcome at most dining establishments (unless we cough up more money on a sitter).

We optimistically buy ingredients to cook at home, and then we realize that we're too busy or too tired for cooking (and everything that entails). In addition to the money we spend on dining out, our well-meaning grocery investments often go to waste.

In December, we spent 50% above and beyond our already-excessive food budget. December also brings high utility bills, car insurance, and a variety of additional expenses - planned and unplanned. Time to reassess and get back to cooking together; something that we used to enjoy.

We don't do anything half-assed! This past week has been all about making the best use of our leftovers, and cooking foods we love. For the most part, we cook together and we clean up together; making both tasks easier on the whole family. It's a value we hope to pass on to Kenzie as she gets old enough to help out.

Here are the highlights of the past 7 days:

  • Grilled pizza
  • Lettuce wraps
  • Tom Kha soup
  • Potstickers
  • Pretzels
  • Pork loaf
  • All that and a bowl o chips! (Both potato chips and sweet potato chips)

I don't expect us to keep it up at this level forever, but I definitely enjoy the reset.