Help cooking meals

I'm a pretty standard 30's guy who can follow a recipe. I would really like to start cooking Japanese food as well as making bento boxes. The bento box books that I've seen are look pretty complete as far as making a complete meal. It would be great if there were similar resources for making breakfast and dinner meals. I'm trying to make the distinction of cooking a dish from a recipe and putting together a meal. I can follow a recipe, but I break down when trying to combine things. So if you have any good recommendations on books or threads about putting together meals I would appreciate it. Thanks!