Do you have your child care in your basement and your kitchen is upstairs? Are you tired of trying to entertain the children while you prepare lunch? Do you have a really busy day coming up? Do you wish lunch would cook itself?
What about pre-planning lunch to be done by lunchtime? Imagine putting together your lunch the night before or first thing in the morning, and all you have to do at lunchtime is say the blessing and put it on a plate!
It won't take much effort, but it will take planning and some precooking to get your lunch on the table without a long prep time. It's a combination of using your plan, stove, freezer, and crock pot.
The items you will need to invest in are suggested below. No need to buy new! Your local yard sales or thrift stores (Salvation Army, Good Will, etc.) will have what you need for a very reasonable price. You can also check Craigslist or Freecycle for these items.
Exactly how many and what you will need will depend a lot on the size of your group, your set-up and what you plan to cook. By far, my most favorite pieces of equipment are my mini crock pots. But, the most important tool in pre-planing meals is a planned menu.
If you are in the basement with your kitchen upstairs, you would want to invest in at least a microwave and a crock pot or two that can stay downstairs. Also, you don't have to go out and buy everything all at once. Start out with what you have, then add to your collection as you find items. Another way to start out is to ask your clients, neighbors, or friends if they have a thing or two you can borrow for a week or a month until you find one of your own.
Two or more 1 or 2-Quart size. I have two 1-quart and a 2-quart that work perfectly.
A toaster and a regular oven will do, or you can get a toaster oven for your daycare area.
Don't Forget to Feed Yourself!
If you're like me, you sometimes forget to plan your own lunch. Here's what I do for my lunch.
An easy start to all this is to cook extra for supper, then freeze or put away some for a lunch later. You can cook two meatloaves and freeze one. You can take your leftover spaghetti and sauce, mix it and freeze it. All you will have to do is reheat for a quick lunch.