Friday, April 13, 2007

Simplifying Supper

Starting today, Fridays will feature interviews with other writers. Today, we’re part of author Trish Berg’s “Blog Tour.” She’s visiting Deep Breathing for the Soul to tell us how we can simplify our lives, save on our grocery bill and feel peaceful instead of panicky about getting dinner on the table.
Eating together is good for families, but getting a meal on the table can be a stressful chore.
Trish's new book, The Great American Supper Swap, offers practical help. It’s full of funny stories, recipes, practical tips, even prayers. You can get a copy on amazon, or if you would like an autographed copy, order from Trish’s website.
Trish is all about simplifying motherhood. She publishes a weekly newsletter on that topic, and she understands what it means to be busy! As a mom of four young kids, Trish used supper swapping to simplify life with little ones underfoot. But her ideas are easy to adapt to any life stage. If you have older children, you could have them make some of the meals. If you are single, do this with a group of friends!
So, here's our interview with Trish.

So tell us: what IS supper swapping?

Supper swapping is really a simple solution to that ever present “What’s for dinner,” question.

Supper swapping is women helping women by sharing the cooking responsibility for their families. You cook in bulk then swap meals during the workweek.

What does your supper swap group looks like?

Right now we have 3 families in our group, though I have swapped with 4 families in the past as well.

Our typical week looks like this:
Monday – Nann delivers supper to us at 5:30, hot and ready to eat.
Tuesday – Kelly delivers her meal at noon, prepared but not cooked. At supper time, I throw it in the oven and voila!
Wednesday – Our day off. We eat leftovers from Mon and Tues.
Thursday – My cooking day. I prepare my meal Wednesday evening, and deliver it Thursday around noon, prepared but not cooked.
Friday – Since we have had larger meals already, it’s easy on Fridays to make something simple like spaghetti, sandwiches or grilled burgers.

Each group can decide what constitutes a meal. We only swap one main dish and one side dish, and each family adds salad, bread or vegetables on their own to complete teach meal.

We usually plan 3 months at a time. (Print FREE meal calendars at

Why is the family meal so important to our kids?

Eating dinner together as a family opens communication, helps children to eat healthier, feel more connected to their parents, feel loved and cherished. These benefits have a lifelong impact on our children.

According to research from Columbia University, children who eat dinner with their family on a regular basis are 60% less likely to smoke cigarettes, 50% less likely to use drugs, and 66% less likely to drink alcohol. The family meal has a lifelong impact on our kids!

In your book, you also mention saving money through supper swapping.

Supper swapping can save families up to $4000 a year or more as they buy groceries more in bulk, shop with a plan wasting less food, and reduce their expenditures on fast food and pizza.

For example:

Ordering pizza or take out costs around $25 for a family of 6. If you are now ordering pizza or buying take out 3 times a week:

$25 * 3 = $75 a week
$75 * 4.5 weeks a month = $337.50 per month
$337.50 * 12 months = $4,050 per year

You could save over $4000 a year on that alone, and that’s not even counting the money you’ll save buying in bulk and shopping with a plan!

With so many other dinner options out there, why do you think supper swapping is becoming a hot trend?

Today’s families run at a fast pace unheard of 30 years ago. Usually, dinner is fast food, on the go grab bag, or relegated to pizza, take out or frozen quick fix meals. These meals are unhealthy and expensive.

Supper swapping cuts the time you spend cooking by up to 80%. For about 1-2 hours of meal preparation and 15-30 minutes or less of meal delivery one day a week, you get a week’s worth of hot, fresh, homemade dinners.

What do you hope families gain from The Great American Supper Swap?

Supper swapping can save families $4000 a year or more, reduce cooking by 80%, create a greater sense of community by adding deeper faith and friendships, and help families eat healthier food.

BUT MOST OF ALL – it gathers families around their dinner table together. That’s my mission. A return to the family meal.
For more information on The Great American Supper Swap or Trish Berg, go to


Trish Berg said...

Keri - Thanks for the great post! I woudl love to hear from some of the moms out there who do supper swap, or those who want to try it! I have been swapping meals for 5 years now, and couldn't imagine life without it!

Don't forget, YOU BLOGGERS have until 5 pm TODAY to leave a comment here and be entered into a random drawing for a FREE copy of The Great American Supper Swap mailed to you!

Blessings - Trish berg

Katrina said...

This book sounds great! It's on my wishlist, but winning a copy would be even better! :) Thanks, Trish and Keri, for this great interview.

Keri Wyatt Kent said...

okay, I love my crock pot--had a great pot roast tonight for dinner, but I think I might want to try supper swapping!

Trish Berg said...

Katrina , You are the winner of a FREE copy of The Great American Supepr Swap! YEA!

Thanks for your interest, and I truly hope you try supper swapping. Please let me know if you do and how it goes.

Please e-mail me with your mailing address so I can get your book in the mail this week!

You can contact me via my website at

Blessings to you,

Trish Berg