Saturday, February 2, 2013

Menu Board

I recently created a "menu board".  There are lots of examples of these boards on Pinterest, and I looked at several different types before deciding what to do.  Mine is a combo menu board--menu/shopping list/dry erase.

My husband and I were eating out too much and buying groceries we didn't end up using.  After work, we would try to decide what to eat, and we were either ruled by our stomachs or just out of ideas.  When we did eat at home, we often ate the same things over and over again.  The eating out was hurting our purse strings and waist lines, so I decided to try out the menu board idea.

I really like it so far.  I put up the meals for each week, and it helps me know what we need to buy. Sometimes I put up dinners for items I know we need to use.  It has really helped us eat out less.  As part of this experiment, I have also been finding new recipes, so that we have fun, tasty (hopefully), new things to make and eat at home.  For example, we have started cooking with tofu--it's cheap, easy to make, and it tastes good when well flavored.  I'll probably write about it next.

On to the creation of my menu board.  Here is what I ended up creating:

My kitchen and dining area open into each other, and this menu board is in between them, so I picked colors that matched with the area.  As you can see, I went with a blue and black theme.  This menu board wasn't very difficult to make, and I really like how it turned out.

What you need:
1 picture frame with the glass and cardboard that come with it
spray paint (optional) to paint the frame
decorative papers in the colors of your choice
glue gun and glue sticks
household glue like Elmer's
clothes pins
small boxes to hold the dry erase markers and the dinner cards (I used crayon boxes)
dry erase markers (The glass is naturally good for dry erase markers.)

How to make it:
Step 1:  The frame I got was originally brown, so I spray painted it black.

Step 2:  Using the cardboard that came with the frame for sizing, figure out the design for your board and cut your paper to fit.  As you can see, I went with a checker board for the main part of the board, and then used a different paper for the bottom message section. Glue the paper to the cardboard, let dry, and put it back in the frame.

Step 3:   For the word "menu" and it's back, the day of the week letters and their little squares, as well as for the cards, I used my Cameo Sillhouette.  If you don't have a cutting tool, you could create the letters in Word, print it, and cut it out, or you could draw it.  Same thing with the cards.  Glue the Menu label to the board using a glue gun.

Step 4: Cut out paper to cover the clothes pins and glue it to the pins.  Glue the day of the week letters to the pins, and then hot glue the pins to the frame.

Step 5: Cover the boxes with decorative paper and glue them to the board. Put markers and cards in their respective boxes.

Step 6: Cut the magnet in half, and then glue 1 piece of the magnet to the notepad and 1 to the glass.

Ta dah!  Your menu board is done.  Of course, you can make lots of changes to the design to fit your needs.  Now, you need to find some dinner ideas for your cards. 

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