A lot of blogs and books that I have read talk about meal planning. Basically you fill out a calendar, be it weekly or monthly, of meals that you plan to make. I have tried this so many times.
Being that I am really organized, I have no problem filling it out and even putting what I would need from the grocery store (only fresh items - not meats or pantry stuff as I buy that before I need it with coupons and sales) on a nice little post-it.
The problem is: I never want what I put on the calendar that day. And if we don't make the meal I feel like I am completely out of whack. I am the type that if I write it all out I want it to go perfectly.
My solution to this waste of my time and feeling like I wasn't being "perfect" when I didn't follow it was to stock my pantry and freezer and keep a few fresh items (bell peppers, onions, potatoes, carrots, fruits) on hand each week so that I could make almost any meal any night of the week.
Usually the night before or the morning of I will lay out the meat I intend to use (I alternate chicken a couple of times and then beef). Then I will ask my husband what he wants for dinner using that meat. Sometimes I give him a couple of choices (ie If it is chicken, "Do you want something like Chicken Pot Pie or Buffaloe Chicken Tenders?"). He tells me, I come up with a few side dishes, and TADA we have dinner.
This works for my family. I have known lots of people that make a meal plan and stick to it. I commend them. I think I am just the type that if I know what I am going to have it already becomes boring to me. I would love to hear what you do to get dinner on the table in your house - Scheduled, Semi-Scheduled, Day Of, of Fly By the Seat of Your Pants? :)