As a gal who has grown quite accustomed to "flying by the seat of her pants" for a very long time, accepting the March challenge of cooking more is my valiant attempt to reign myself in and reapply some discipline in my life (especially when it comes to food). I have taken quite a bit of ribbing from friends regarding the "lapsed" label and what appears to be a rather large skillet I am wielding in the photo. 

Well, all ribbing aside, I have been doing mental exercises about how to approach the March challenge. I took to heart Phoebe's comments in her blog about setting goals.  As a former teacher, I decided using the "KISS" method (Keep It Simple, Stupid) was exactly what my approach needed to be.  I took the grocery ads from the Sunday paper, sat down with pen and paper, and actually began making a grocery list.  I began to think about how I wanted to manage a day's meals and then a week's. Our weather had turned very nice and I love to grill, so I began to get excited about the possibilities of fresh food prepared daily. Then, on March 2nd, I got hit with a stomach virus. Temporarily, food lost all appeal.

Another Sunday, more grocery ads. A new list. New resolve. Keep fruit and yogurt handy. No fast food drive throughs. Do not sit down when you first arrive home. Last night, I prepared an omelette. I haven't done that in a very long time. I love omelettes! So, apparently, does my cocker spaniel.
I'm not quite ready for "en papillote" (I had no clue what it even was) as suggested in one of my tips. However, I like the wine and friends idea—a lot. I'm also gearing up to try the Quick Breakfast recipes collection on 

I experienced some satisfaction with this tentative step and would love to know if any of our readers have tricks they would like to share—mental ones or food preparation ones. Sometimes, cooking for one (and a willing doggie) doesn't seem worth the effort. What have you tried?