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Home help once back at work. Does anyone pay someone else to prepare meals?

(14 Posts)
Maki79 Sat 16-Apr-16 22:35:41

I feel a bit daft with this question really. I actually have a fair few 'real' issues on my plate right now and this is classic first world non-problem but I would appreciate any advice or experience on this.

I'm going back to work in 2 weeks and we have just met 2 women who applied for an Ad to clean our house once a week and to also do the changeovers on our holiday let once I'm in work.

Lady A is in her early 20's, never had employment, seems v keen to start working. Lady B retired professional, experience in cleaning and changeovers and very confident, matter of fact approach. I've employed Lady B for the role that I advertised.

However, I'd really like to give Lady A some hours of employment. We have a very disorganised lifestyle and I am really keen to start getting it organised,; decluttering, dealing with paperwork on time, preparing healthy meals more often rather than turning to beans on toast/cereal/takeaways for dinners. But mainly having a 'nicer' home for us and the children.

I've decided the thing that we could employ somebody for that would make the most difference (with the exception of cleaning) is to come home from work to a healthy, homemade dinner in the fridge ready to heat up after dh and I come home from work. Lady A says she has no cooking skills. I'm not exactly a great cook either, however there are a few dinners (bolognase, chilli, curries) that I could show her how to make.

I was thinking of doing the shop myself, she can use our kitchen and we pay her per meal that she's made. She is keen to take up this challenge. I wonder how this would work though...does anyone hire anyone to do this?? What if she cooks terribly...should I kindly say there will be a probation?? Would it be fair to say we'd pay £10 per meal cooked (assuming it takes about 45 mins per meal?).


whiteagle Sat 16-Apr-16 22:41:29

This sounds like a bonkers waste of money - she says she can't cook and you want to pay £10 a meal on top of ingredients! Why don't advertise a housekeeper type role to come twice a week with cooking and cleaning and get 2 meals on each visit?

MrsLeighHalfpenny Sat 16-Apr-16 22:44:24

Makes for a very expensive meal. What if it's not very nice?

But if you've got the money, why not?

Parker231 Sun 17-Apr-16 07:46:32

Cook do lovely meals. Order from their website, have them delivered and much cheaper than your idea (plus they taste gorgeous !)

jclm Sun 17-Apr-16 15:08:05

Can person B do the cooking of meals? For an hour and a half's work she could batch cook six trays of lasagne!

pitterpatterrain Thu 21-Apr-16 11:57:45

Someone at work their cleaner makes meals for them, relatively simple things like hearty soup. Works for them, they got into it when both were doing really heavy work hours and were eating badly (lots of take-outs etc) and wanted to make a change.
Think the cleaner buys the food though as they are doing the cooking.

Sparklycat Thu 21-Apr-16 12:06:07

Just get fresh food meals from the 'COOK' shops or get them to deliver it to you. There's tons of other fresh meal delivery companies around. Is too. It seems ridiculous to employ her especially as she can't even cook!!

IToldYouIWasFreaky Thu 21-Apr-16 12:17:09

45 mins to cook a chili or bolog?! And £10 on top of ingredients for someone that can't even cook?! I'm sorry but no way!

In your situation, I'd either employ Lady B for a bit longer and ask her to do some cooking, or more cleaning/organising so that your time is freed up to do some batch cooking, or I'd use one of the services like Cook, or Hello Fresh.
Or you could look for things to cook yourself that are really quick and easy while still being healthy. One of the things I do a lot midweek are salmon portions baked in foil. You can do them from frozen in foil parcels with some seasoning and they take about 25 mins. For maximum convenience, I serve with one of those microwave pouches of mixed grains/rice and some veg or salad. Minium effort and time and easy to scale up or down depending on the number of people eating.

Maki79 Thu 21-Apr-16 22:53:29

Thanks so much everyone!

I will certainly look into COOK, never heard of it before now.

As it turns out lady B spent 3.5 hours cleaning our bathroom and more importantly she is so intense I don't think it's going to work out. I felt like giving lady A a break (she is desperate for work) but I realise if the food is bad it would be ridiculous.

Looby4 Fri 22-Apr-16 20:29:15

I pay a lovely student to make 4-5 meals a week for my family of 6. I buy in the food and she comes and cooks everything (I give her a schedule); it then is refrigerated or frozen. I set the oven to come on and it is cooked when I get home, or my eldest DD serves it up. It means that I know the food is fresh and organic etc. and there are often left-overs for lunch the next day (or an extra meal for DS3. It can get a little bit same-y with casseroles, Lasagne, Shepherd's pie, but I have got about a 3 weekly rota, so not too much repetition. The DCs miss freshly cooked food like chips though, as we rarely have them at home!! I have tried Cook but it's £30 a meal for our family (DCs eat LOADS), whereas I pay £100; comes out at about £15/hr and for me, worth every penny.

MrsLeighHalfpenny Fri 22-Apr-16 23:08:33

Three and a half hours to clean a bathroom???

Just how dirty was it?hmm

Maki79 Sun 24-Apr-16 22:55:32

Mrsleigh it is a bit cluttered (same as rest of house). Husbands mountain biking mags on the window sill and 3 plants that needed dead leaves removing from sill. Bit of soap scum in shower seat and tiles could have done with a wipe. Mirror needed wiping. Sink, bath and floor were pretty spotless though. I emptied bin before she arrived. Would have taken me 30 mins tops.

Gave her another chance and she spent 2 hours hoovering the house minus one reception room she didn't have time for. Would have taken me 40 mins max except I had actually hovered the whole upstairs the previous day anyway. I had asked her to focus on hoovering and kitchen.

I feel so silly complaining about this as if it's a real problem, but I'm trying to do everything I can to help myself feel less stressed when I go back to work and fitting everything in. I'm worried about how I'll get 3 kids out the door by 7.30 next Tuesday.

thatstoast Sun 24-Apr-16 23:06:31

Look at gousto/hello fresh. They do quick, easy to prepare meals. You can usually have money off (i have a referral code, if you're interested pm me)

It sounds like neither of the people you've found are going to work out on the cleaning front. It's actually really difficult to find a good, reliable cleaner.

Alwaysinahurrynow Fri 29-Apr-16 21:30:30

We pay a student to come for three hours a week. She puts away all the children's clothes, changes beds and towels and cooks three main courses for the kids. It is so helpful as then all I have to do is microwave the meals when I come in the front door.

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