What's for dinner tonight at your house, or Friday at your house? If you can answer both of those you are probably a meal planner which can saves lots of time and money. I ask myself the "what's for dinner" question often but I get asked it more often by my kids. There are hundreds of ways to plan meals but you have to start somewhere and this is what made sense to me.
Make a list of EVERYTHING you can cook that your family will eat, and then add those things you buy ready made to feed your family. Add side items and breads to the list the same way. Now that you have a master list of things that you can feed your family, organize the list. You can organize by main dish types or you can organize by how long it takes to prepare the meals. Make a section of all the side items and bread possibilities and put your list in a page protector and keep it very close by the kitchen.
I think you will find you use the list often when its time to make grocery lists and plan meals. You can also let other family members pick things from your list to add to the week's meals. This is is where its helpful to have a "Sunday dinner" section and a "busy weeknight" section and to tell them which sections they can choose from. Don't forget to update the list often and I think you'll surprise yourself with all the options you have when the dreaded question comes up, what's for dinner mom?