There was a time before I spent all of my waking hours on the internet when I would spend my “me time” reading the stacks of magazines that I’d impulse buy while standing on line at the grocery store. In today’s digital world, there is something extra special about receiving a handwritten note in the mail, flipping through a paperback book or settling in for some “me time” with a few favorite magazines and a chocolate chip cookie or a glass of wine.
Last week when I was waiting to check Jewel-Osco, I picked up a copy of People StyleWatch, an old favorite title, and Real Simple, which boasted a feature about “instant meal planning” that included a month of family dinners. As much as I love to read about fall fashion colors and fall decor, it’s a good food or recipe feature that will really hook me.
Though some people criticize magazines for setting impossibly high standards of perfection, I love that the articles and recipes inside are aspirational, but not out of reach. In the 30 minutes that I spent flipping through Real Simple with the television off and my phone out of reach, I felt inspired to create my own meal plan to help me keep organized for the week and on track with healthy eating.
Not only does creating a meal plan leave me feeling productive and accomplished, but who doesn’t love to pore over food photos and recipes for an hour? Even if I stray from this when things pop up like after-work drinks or an impromptu dinner out with friends, it saves me time overall during the week to have a plan in place. Though I don’t plan out my meals every week, it’s been hard to get back into a routine now that fall is here and having a sketch in place is helpful.
Skinny Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo is a perfect way to kick off the week: something that feels indulgent, but will get you off to a healthy start.
Pistachio Crusted Pork Tenderloin alongside a bed of fresh, peppery arugula. Pick up a bottle of a Syrah full of ripe berry flavors and spicy notes to round out your #WineWednesday.
Keep it simple! Pick up a bag of pretzel croissants on your way home from work — they’re delicious — and whip up a super simple chicken salad with cranberries and almonds.
Take the night off from cooking: you worked hard all week and you deserve some “me time.” Create a simple cheese and charcuterie board, Italian chef style. If you’re entertaining friends add a herbed cheese dip too, to add a little more variety. Cocktails, too? Opt for a nice refreshing Aperol Spritz.
If you’re tuned into college football, why not make it a little festive? Whip up a pot of easy turkey chili and a loaf of whole wheat beer bread. If you have friends joining you, add either hot spinach artichoke dip, baked goat cheese marinara dip or French onion dip with caramelized onions and thyme.
If you’re lucky enough to enjoy a lazy Sunday, make it breakfast for dinner. Bacon & egg breakfast quesadillas are quick and fun, while a spinach and cheddar breakfast bake may parlay itself into weekday breakfast leftovers.
Bonus! If you shop at Jewel-Osco, take advantage of $1.00 off participating titles (PEOPLE®, InStyle®, ®, Real Simple®, and Sunset®) with this digital offer until 10/18/15 while supplies last.
Tell us in the comments: how do you spend your “me time?” What projects or recipes have magazines inspired you to accomplish?
This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and PEOPLE StyleWatch® and Real Simple® but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #BacktoMeTime http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV