Feb 182017
 


making breakfast exciting again collage

We may not be trapped at home with feet of snow, though part of me really wishes we were, yet it is still winter and the perfect time for warm breakfast foods.

With a lot of changes to our routines coming up, again, I am looking for some quick yet easy things to add to our breakfast rotation on weekdays.  While I could literally eat the same thing for breakfast every day, my kids finally revolted.

Mom, enough.  Can we please have something else?

My kids tend to be carb lovers, yet burn enough calories to need protein with their meals. Especially with breakfast. I have chosen to find new recipes that hopefully lean toward more protein than carbs.

My boys can eat more than me, if they decide they actually like their food.  Actually, they could almost out eat me when they were only 3 or 4, and I am not exactly a light eater.  They are not necessarily picky eaters, but more along the lines of “we finally have a enough to eat that we can have foods we prefer to eat.”  And that is why I am wanting to put dwarf fruit trees in my next garden/yard, along with vegetables and root vegetables.

Having these on hand allows me to plan for some of the more expensive or not-normally-on-our-shopping-list items.  I doubt these can be made for $0.50 a person, which is where I like to keep most weekday breakfasts.  However, I might find I am wrong, which would be lovely.

A few of these would also be good as a sandwich version, made ahead and frozen for reheating.  Also, a few call for croissants*, which are not cheap but can be found on sale if you look for them.  *I am not talking about crescent rolls, though those are also in a few recipes.  They are similar but not the same.

While my husband we love to have croissants for breakfast, if you do not eat them in time they are not as nice.  Or so my husband says.  His palate is more in tune to that sort of thing.  You can also find older ones on discount at the grocery store.  I am thinking those would be good for some of these recipes, especially for those who will be soaked in eggs and milk.

Here are 10 recipes I plan to try out in the upcoming days:

  1. Egg Croissant Casserole Recipe
  2. Sausage McMuffin Casserole
  3. Cheesy Tat Tot Breakfast Bake
  4. Easy Cheesy Breakfast Casserole
  5. Overnight Mexican Breakfast Casserole
  6. Breakfast Enchilada Bake
  7. Spinach, Feta, and Artichoke Breakfast Bake
  8. Italian Breakfast Casserole
  9. Farmer’s Market Overnight Breakfast Egg Casserole
  10. Broccoli, Ham, Mozzarella Baked with Eggs
Apr 132016
 

1460544989575-749573063

Breakfast today is to be muffins. My fall back has been chocolate zucchini muffins, but I am ready for a change.

Several jars of Green Tomato Pie Filling sit on the shelves of the pantry needing to be used. My initial thought was to use the bread recipe, making muffins instead.  However, I do not have plain yogurt and it seemed a bit to complicated for me this morning.

A search online search resulted in a zucchini recipe I think would work well with a substitution … and I have all the ingredients.

IMG_20160413_061955117

A Few Changes:

1. I left out the extra spices as the canned filling already had them included.

2 I blended up the 2 cups of pie filling before stirring it into the batter.

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Results:

After adding the filling I realized I did not cut down on the sugar in the recipe. This did not turn out to be an issue, though in the future I would adjust the sugar to help them be a bit healthier.

The batter was very thick, making me concerned about sticking to the wrappers. It clung a bit, but the papers came off easily.

In all, I am very happy with the results (2.5 dozen muffins) and will repeat this recipe in the future.

Next time, though, I could do without 3 boys trying to be up at 5:30 a.m.  This would help cut down on the prep time for me.

Feb 222016
 

This post contains some links that are affiliate links.  If you click through and decide to purchase something I will receive a small portion, at not extra charge to you.  I hope you find these links helpful to your day.Weekly Menu Plan May 2013

The Chocolate Mousse in the picture collage above sounds so very good right now.  I think it has a lot more to do with my scratchy throat than my desire for chocolate.  This also started with George, proceeded on to Jack, who thinks sucking his fingers is fully acceptable.  It was no surprise then when my husband came down with the cold.  He also seems to catch every cold going around, and never just slightly.  I, however, seem to rarely get sick and thought I had made it through this without catching it.  At least I know I will get over it in a few days.  My poor husband has already been dealing with it for 4 days and has a few more before he is out of the woods.

These past few weeks have held grocery trips were I have not needed to buy a lot of the ingredients for our meals.  This has allowed me to buy specialty items or restock on items we  have gone through.

Ibotta sent me $34.75 in rebates.  This is for previously purchased groceries, things I would have been purchasing anyway.  If you have never used this program, I recommend it.  It is easy to use and there is a variety of products offered.  Often they have rebates for produce that I can not find elsewhere.  If you sign-up by clicking this link, you can earn a $10 bonus after submitting your first rebate.

I also redeemed my points earned at Swagbucks for a $25 Amazon gift card.  My thought is to use this gift card in conjunction with Amazon Pantry. The idea of having some of my weekly shopping list delivered directly to my door is awesome.  I am trying to reduce the amount of time I spend in the stores.  Not only do I notice how sluggish I become while in stores, and the fact that I get a headache, but my kids also do not like to go shopping.  They sure do like to eat though, so I have not completely given up on this activity.

We already use Amazon to purchase various items, usually in bulk. Have you used Amazon’s Prime Pantry before?  What were your thoughts?

Breakfast:

  1. Eggs with peppers and onions, hash browns and tea
  2. Cereal
  3. Cereal
  4. Muffins
  5. Shakes
  6. Oatmeal
  7. Crepes, bacon, fruit

Lunch:

  1. Eat out
  2. OYO
  3. Pizza
  4. Meatloaf
  5. Kheema, rice
  6. Chili, corn bread muffins
  7. Sandwiches, chips, fruit

Supper:

  1. Marinated meat, apple slices, peas
  2. Tomato soup/hot dogs, chips, fruit
  3. Black Bean Burgers, fried potatoes
  4. Tomato soup/leftovers
  5. Buttermilk pancakes, fruit syrup, fruit
  6. Falafel, flat bread, side salad
  7. Eat out

Linked up at This Week for Dinner and OrgJunkie.

Feb 072016
 

cleaning kitchen floor collage

Friday, out of frustration I cleaned. At least the broom would not yell at me, try to do things the hard way and then whine about it,  and I could do something about the eternally frustrating, never ending crumbs and bits of dirt that seem to appear overnight on our wood floors.

There are still areas that need a lot of attention, but the floors are swept and the entry way actually feels inviting.  The laundry is also almost caught up from having been given a back seat this week.

Friday night, my friend mentioned their family was going to be in Small Town on Saturday and was wondering if their son could give our kids their guitar lessons (one of our Christmas gifts to the kids) at our house.  Otherwise they would have had to drive back to their Other Small Town and we would have had to drive to their Other Small Town for the lessons right after this lovely family finished their errands in my Small Town.  “Of course!” I responded.  “Why don’t you also come a bit early and have breakfast with us?”

I had no special plans for breakfast, my bedroom is a mess, there is at least one section of the counter in the kitchen that has items which have been waylaid on their journey to their rightful homes, the board game shelf is over flowing, and…and…and… AND these are friends.  Friends are more important than an immaculate house.

These are also friends who value their limited free time.

These are friends we do not get to see often enough.

These are friends who are not expecting a fully set table with linens and silver wear, imported coffee and hand squeezed juice.  They are friends and they are welcome at our house whenever and for however long, or short, the time.

What did breakfast end up being?  Buttermilk pancakes, bacon, bananas, eggs, juice, and coffee.  Again, nothing fancy but it really is oh so good and a great breakfast to have a conversation over.

Weekly Menu Plan May 2013

Last week I tried 4 new meals.  3 are repeats.  1 took way too long to make.  1 cost way too much. 1 was very flavorful, even Jack has asked for it again several times since.

The 1 that took too long ended up being the one I will not repeat again.  While it was good, it was not great.  The flavor just did not deliver.  We have the left overs in the freezer, so we will see it again on the menu at least once.

The one recipe that cost way too much seemed to also not deliver on flavor … until the final step.  Even the recipe mentioned this would happen.  They were right.  It was a beef stew that had a bottle of wine as part of the ingredients.  The instructions called for half the wine to be put in at the beginning and the rest at the end.  The same for certain spices.  The difference was amazing.  Even my husband was amazed at the difference between the 10 minutes I took it out of the oven and when it made it to the table, finished.  We will adjust it to our liking, including adding more vegetables and less meat.  Again, we have enough left overs to make a second meal in a few weeks.

The one Jack really loved also took a bit of time, but I know now how to help shorted it.  A lot of the marinating process can be done before the meat is put into the freezer, which is what I do when I find meat on sale but do not yet need it.  This step would save me a few hours of prep time the day I want to make this meal.  After that, most of the steps are “Apply this rub and cook.  wait a gazillion hours.  Take from the over and let it sit.  Cook sauce and pour over meat.  Enjoy!”   I think I will also be looking for a boneless option next time at the store, as I used a lot of time cutting the bone out of the meat.

The one recipe that did not cost too much, nor take too much time, and still delivered on flavor was a Black Bean Burger recipe.  It is not going to knock your socks off in the flavor area, but it was for sure not bland.  My husbands verdict? “Needs more onion but is a great substitute for ground beef in burgers.”  Sounds like a win to me.

eggs toast grits breakfast

This week may hold a few new recipes, though they will be soups. I am balancing this with cleaning out some of the freezer and using up some remaining breakfast items. Hopefully no meals that take a lot of time to make.

Breakfast:

  1. Shakes, cereal
  2. Cream of wheat and grits till they are gone.
  3. Pancakes from freezer

Lunch:

  1. Eat out
  2. Salad
  3. Chocolate chili
  4. Party – Sandwiches, fruit, dessert
  5. Pizza
  6. Curry and rice
  7. New Recipe

Supper:

  1. Super Bowl Party/jam and cheese sandwiches
  2. Tomato soup/freezer leftovers
  3. Butternut Squash Soup (new recipe)
  4. Freezer leftovers/tomato soup
  5. Hearty Lentil Soup (new recipe)
  6. Salad
  7. Leftovers

Linked up at This Week for Dinner and OrgJunkie.

Jan 162016
 

bird seed snowflake children craft

Cardinal Cottage has some great photos if, what else, cardinals.  There are a few craft ideas and paintings as well.

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Penny spinners look like a great craft for any time you need a fairly quick idea. I am going to file this away for an upcoming holiday shindig with a few other families.

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I love how Two Peas And Their Pod took a simple tomato soup and with the help of a few simple additions too it to a more adult level. I found this right before making tomato soup for supper. I tried the addition of Greek yogurt, but forgot to measure.  While it had to be thinned with some whole milk, this is one addition I am up for keeping up my sleeve.

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In an effort to find information to support a point of mine involving siblings and arguing, I came across the following 3 links. While they all belong to the same website, the first really hitting home. I have been feeling that this is an underlying issue in our home, but have not been able to put it into words. While our kids deal with childhood trauma, developmental delays, speech issues, attention issues (due to trauma?), and other labels, there has been something as of late (building in the last 12 months or so) that has been holding us all back.  I have started seeing it in how the kids treat and talk to each other, especially when they are mad.  I was having trouble pinpointing it. After reading this it felt like someone went into my brain and decoded my feelings.

Out Of Control Child, Stopping The Family Anxiety

Learn To Love Your Difficult Child

Outbursts And Temper Tantrums

Update: I was able to talk with a professional about the first article, and the one from last week.  This is a person who knows our family history and dynamics.  It is always good to get an outside perspective on how things are playing out, especially if you tend to be like me – over analyzing and internalizing everything.  This person said while part of the issues in our home are from Family Anxiety, which honestly is a part of every family and something we all have to learn to live with, that is not the main reason.  Yes, the idea of it had been causing me anxiety.  🙂  

I did use the reminders in the second two articles as encouragement.  When it feels as if we are surrounded by neural-typical kids and trauma-free families, I need the encouragement to keep doing what I am doing.  This is especially true when it feels like what I am doing looks like I am babying my kids or not being stern enough.  This is why I held the hand of my 6 year old all through the second half of our field trip yesterday and let him stand on my feet while I swayed him back and forth and he hung his head and watched reflections in the puddles on the walkways.  It was an action I would have done with a toddler, but it is what he needed (vestibular sensory activity, help with boundaries, staying on track, etc.).  Yes, he wanted to run around with the older boys, exploring the edge of a pond 100’s of yards away from us, opening doors to see what was behind them, touching everything in sight, kicking poles to see what would happen, playing follow the leader through the group of people listening to the presenter … not exactly what you should be doing while visiting a maple syrup business and a commercial green house.  So, as the parent I gave him what he really needed, even if he thought it would be more fun to “see what this does.”  Boy, he does keep you on your toes.

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Here are a few pdf’s and links talking about starting transplants at home.  Just like listening to Christmas Carols all through December gets you in the mood for Christmas, reviewing information on growing transplants gets me excited to get started on my own.

Iowa State University Extension “Starting Garden Transplants At Home

Utah State University “Grow Your Own Transplants At Home

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension “Timely Tips on Starting Seedlings At Home

tomato seedlings 2013

Jan 122016
 

grocery store food

On Sunday’s post about this week’s meal plan, I mentioned looking for ways to reduce the grocery spending.  Monday I did a one stop shopping trip; well it was supposed to be one stop except they were out of salami at the deli.  And while I spent more than I wanted, I learned several lessons yet again:

  • Saving money by shopping at one store only works if you stop at the store with the lower prices.  While shopping I noticed two things I had previously bought at Aldi and Ruler, except at this ‘nicer’ store, not co-op nice but a nationally known chain nice, they were $2-$3 more per package.  I would have never bought them in the first place if I had noticed them at this store, mainly due to the price.  On the other hand, I was able to ‘splurge’ at the lower priced stores and still not spend much more than I might have for the cheaper alternative.  I also noted an item that was cheaper at the Small Town Grocery Store.  This ‘nicer’ store used to be my main shopping destination, especially when I was looking for deals and using coupons.  I know go there for certain items but not my whole trip.  Today, I thought I would save time and energy, but I ended up spending a lot more money in doing it.
  • Shopping online really can cost less. Not only money wise, but also sanity.  It is not worth the gas, time, and getting cranky kids in and out of cars to drive across town to get one kind of lentil at the small ethnic store with super narrow aisles.  Shop online when they are sleeping (or supposed to be asleep as is the case right now) and save money and sanity.  It also helps the gas tank and reduces the risk of having an accident due to distracted driving.
  • Kids do not care about cost per unit, no matter how fun you try to make it sound. “Look, Billy, this peanut butter is $1.29 for 12 ounces.  This jar is $1.48 for 16 ounces.  Which do you think is the better buy?  Can you guess?  To find the answer you take the price divided by the ounces and get the answer.  So the better buy is this one! Great job, you guessed right.  Now how about the jelly?”  Yeah, they start to see through this one really quick.
  • There really are recipes which call for fresh sage.  This is one of those herbs I grew because I had it and I liked the look of it.  Of course the one time I want it the temperature outside is cold enough to make wet hair freeze straight, so I have to actually buy it from the store.  (sigh) If all goes well with this recipe, I know another herb that will be seen in the garden again this year.
  • My husband is more important than the budget.  With new recipes comes specific ingredients needed to create said recipes.  With new ingredients come high grocery bills as you have to buy a whole bottle/package/bag of said ingredient rather than using what you have.  Upfront costs, well, cost.  BUT, I love my husband and he is worth the extra money.  He put the time in to find recipes he thought looked good, tries to make them if he is home or asks when I am going to make them.  If making a new recipe will make him happy, then I will buy that $4 container of sage and look for other ways to save money.

While sitting at home last night, I was putting together a list of items I want to order from Amazon.  I was also lamenting the fact that I have no Amazon gift cards at this time.  In the past it was almost unheard of for us not to have some form of credit on our Amazon account.  During the past year, I had greatly decreased my survey taking activities, as well as my actions on Swagbucks.com.  Then I remembered, while I decreased my activity on Swagbucks I still had points, called SB, in my account which had never been redeemed.  Perfect. (Update: I just redeemed my SB for a $25 Amazon gift code!)

When I signed in to my account, I saw the following:

Alright, it’s finally freezing here. We’ve layered sweaters and sweaters and blankets and blankets. We’re even wearing long underwear! We’ve even tried lighting a fire in the fireplace and sipping hot cocoa but none of it is working! We should have known though, they say the best way to get warm is to huddle with others for warmth. The same goes for earning Swagbucks! If you’re looking for those warm and fuzzy Swagbucks feels, it’s best to do it with friends and what better way to huddle up than through referrals and 300 SB Bonuses?

Three Brrr All

It’s just like a Swagbucks Three For All except it’s a lot… wait for it… cooler.

Here’s how:

  • Refer a friend to Swagbucks between Monday, January 4th and Sunday, January 31st
  • Your referral earns 300 SB by January 31st
  • You AND your referral will both be awarded an additional 300 SB each
  • That’s it (the 300 SB bonuses will credit by February 5th)

So once again, starting on Monday, January 4th, send out those referrals and get those referrals earning. All the cool kids are doing it.

Don’t know what all this Swagbucks ‘punny’ buzz is about? Sign up here for your free account and start earning free $3 – $50 Gift Cards or PayPal cash by taking surveys, searching the web, watching videos, or shopping online. They’ve already awarded over $100,000,000 and have an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. You won’t regret giving Swagbucks a try!

300 SB may sound like a lot, but with 21 days left that goal is easy to reach.  The link above is a referral link, so we will be doing it together.  See, I need a goal to help me get back into the swing of this habit.  What better way than working towards a bonus?  I am not sure this is the best week for me to start, but perhaps that make it just perfect; you can see that you do not need hours and hours of time to reach your 300 SB goal.  Now off I go to do something about reducing my grocery bill …

 

 

Oct 192015
 

Chickens in Pen 2

A few weeks back … yes, it has taken me that long to get to this task … a few weeks back I found a package of chicken breasts on sale.  I knew there were already some in the freezer, but also knew that adding more at a good price might save me later.

Last week was an unofficial ‘Soup Week’, focused on mainly beef soups.  I had planned to add in chicken, but did not have recipes pulled together.  Tonight (Monday) supper was late and just the kids and I.  We had an appointment at home after school and I was unsure as to when it would end.  The smart homemaker would have put something in the crockpot this morning.

The homemaker who lives here was doing well to address behaviors, instead of letting them slide for schedule sake, and get said kid to school without needing to take them in AND make it to an OT appointment in Big Town only 5 minutes late.  Okay, this particular homemaker should have gotten up at 5:50 a.m. when the kids did, but she was hopeful they would go back to sleep.  No such luck.

For supper I determined I would make a simple chicken and noodle recipe.  I had chicken to use, as well as peppers and random tomatoes hanging out in the fridge.  Adding all to a pan, I included onion and Mrs. Dash Lime Fiesta seasoning.  This meal was the catalyst I needed to find chicken recipes.  My hope was to add some to a slow cooker, cook them over night and add them to the freezer tomorrow.  Several were found that fit the bill and one that will be cooked tomorrow.

white wine herb lemon chicken with noodles in bowls

I visited my favorite slow cooker website – A Year of Slow Cooking (also known as Crockpot365).  Here are 3 recipe I plan to try with the chicken breasts I have left:

The first two will be added to the freezer, along with left overs from tonight.  The last one will be the meal for Wednesday night.  A good thing as Wednesday holds another meeting at home.  It will be quick, but it not something for which I want to have a big mess in the kitchen.

This is also a good plan as I will some some items in  the fridge and garden that will need to be used up soon.  I love it when I can add what I have and not have to make a trip to the store.  That was my goal for this week, to not have a major shopping trip.  So far it seems like I will only need to pick up a few things.

Do you have a favorite chicken soup recipe that works well in the slow cooker?  If you are willing to share I would love to take a look.  Even better if it can then also be frozen.

Sep 012015
 

using what you have coffeeEver feel in the mood to use up that item in your pantry that has been sitting there for just a bit too long?  Often my items like this are ones we tried and found we really did not care for, but yet had another one still sitting around.  That is what happened with this bag of coffee.  Seems the ‘columbian’ roast is not a flavor my husband and I are fond of.  Thankfully I had only bought two bags at the wonderful price of $0.99 per bag.  But what to do?

I could have added it straight to the garden as compost.  But that felt like wasting money.

I could give it away, but was not sure exactly how fresh it was considering the price.

I could make a cake out of it, but was afraid the flavor would still come across as one we did not like.

And so there it sat, taking up space in the coffee section of my pantry.  Till last week that is.

I was doing yard work that was taking longer than it should have taken.  The kids were getting antsy and not helping the situation any.  I began to day dream of things that sounded yummy.  (Apparently it was getting close to lunch time.)  A cold coffee drink from a coffee shop sounded great.  The issue?  The nearest ‘coffee shop’ was not exactly close.  This meant that it was up to me to figure something out.

We did have a container of store bought ice coffee mix in the freezer, thanks to a recent sale.  My husband had used it to make a great mix, though I was not sure how he did it and was afraid I would waste it trying to figure it out.  Then I remembered the coffee.  And the fact that I had sweetened condensed milk in the pantry.  And cream in the fridge.  “I wonder….”

I brewed the coffee fairly strong and placed a cup in the freezer, as we have no ice cubes in the house.

I added in several tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk and two or three dollops of chocolate topping.  The cream was added to help thicken it up and make the coffee not so strong.  The cup was mixed up with hand blender and I had a wonder relaxing time after lunch while the kids were quiet in their spots during Quiet Time.  I felt a bit guilty, but that went away with the third taste of what I quickly found out was a great, cheap way to have a cold coffee drink in Small Town in the middle of summer.

Note: I tried this again, using hazelnut extract instead of chocolate.  I would not suggest it.  Perhaps I added too much, but it was undrinkable even for this lady who prides herself on being able to eat/drink almost anything.

using what you have cold coffee drink

 

Mar 152015
 

Weekly Menu Plan May 2013

Last week when Husband was gone to class tonight I realized I had no plans for supper for me and the kids. This meant we were going to have “chicken something” for supper.

While getting onion soup mix out for lunch that day, I had seen a packet of herb garlic mix.  My mind instantly went to a butter sauce with chicken and noodles.

After getting the noodles cooking I did a search for a “butter garlic chicken noodle recipe.” Nothing like waiting till the last minute.  🙂

Realizing I couldn’t use the oven to bake, I figured I would do a simple ‘just cook the chicken’ type thing for the meat. For the sauce I would melt butter and add the sause mix.

When I opened the door I was created by an almost empty bottle of white wine (used in another recipe earlier this week).  Change of plan.

I grabbed the bottle of wine and the open container of chicken broth, diced the chicken, and added it all to a pan.

1425512553340-145032524

After letting it cook down some, I added 4 Tbs of butter and the flavoring packet.  Melt the butter and mix.

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Toss with the noodles.

white wine herb lemon chicken with noodles

white wine herb lemon chicken with noodles in bowls

I really enjoyed the recipe, though will look for an alternative to the sauce packet.  The sodium content was much higher than what I like and am used to having.  I actually cook with very little salt.  While it is healthier for us, it does mean that my tolerance for it is much lower than it used to be.

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

Breakfast:

  1. Shakes
  2. Cereal
  3. Eggs, Toast, and Fruit
  4. Cranberry Pecan Green Tomato Bread
  5. Shakes
  6. Cream of Wheat
  7. Eat Out (Waffles!!)

Lunch

  1. Eat out
  2. Hamburgers, fried potatoes
  3. Pork Loin, beets, couscous with tomato juice
  4. Pork chops, steamed carrots, potatoes
  5. Salad
  6. Eat out?
  7. Chicken burritos

Dinner

  1. Eat out
  2. Mashed potatoes with bacon and cheese, deviled eggs
  3. Sandwiches, carrot sticks
  4. Breakfast – grits, eggs, toast, hot cocoa
  5. TBD???
  6. This-n-That (movie night)
  7. Sandwiches, chips, fruit, fresh vegetables

Looking over this week’s menu, I am fully aware that it may not be the most balanced of menus I have ever created.  I am not trying to add items to the freezer, sort through new recipes, or make complicated dishes.  This week’s goal for the menu is to feed everyone on things we have here at home that need to be used up (i.e. things that have been hanging around and need to be gone, like the sprouting potatoes).

Also, we have several appointments, my husband has class and group meetings, and he is leaving this weekend on a trip.  I do not need complicated right now.

Linked up with OrgJunkieTheModestMomThis Week For Dinner MommyRunFast and Real Food Recipe Roundup.

This post contains affiliate links.

Nov 102014
 

Weekly Menu Plan May 2013

5 pounds of lettuce takes a while to go through, especially when you find out that your husband does not like that kind of lettuce.  🙂

To see this month’s whole meal plan, click here.

Breakfast:

  1. Shakes
  2. Cereal
  3. Eggs, Toast, Fruit
  4. Orange Poppy Seed Pancakes
  5. Shakes
  6. Coconut Oatmeal
  7. Fried Pancakes with Maple Cream Syrup

Lunches:

  1. Eat out
  2. Salad
  3. Super fast Salisbury Steak, mashed potatoes, vegetables
  4. Pizza
  5. Chili
  6. Pot Roast with Bacon and Vegetables
  7. Spicy Pan-Fried Steak with noodles

Supper:

  1. Leftovers
  2. Slow cooker Lentil and Brown Rice Tacos
  3. Sandwiches
  4. Perfect Whole Wheat Pumpkin Muffins
  5. Minute Steak
  6. Popcorn, nuts and a movie
  7. Pulled Pork Egg Rolls

handful of money

Last week I talked about taking the plunge and going all cash for our grocery shopping.  This did not seem like a hard thing to do physically, as I usually have cash on me anyway.  Then came the actual act of going to the store and paying.  Turns out it was a bit harder than I thought.

The first store in Small Town, I picked up a few items and paid without thinking about it.  As I was walking out I realized I had used a card instead of cash.  Oops.  “Okay, next time I will remember.”

The second store I went to was the country store.  The last time I was there, a few of the items I bought were forgotten by the bagger and ended up in the next person’s bags.  They offered replacements for free the next time I came through.  As I did not want to leave a lot of time before stopping by again, I made the trek early in the week with the plan to also pick up a few things for a get together on Saturday.  This time I remembered to pay cash.

The country store is one I have trouble not spending more than I said I would.  You never know what will be there or if it will be there next time.  Walking in I was happy to see they had 40 lbs of bananas for $7.  We ate these as long as we could before having to freeze the remaining.  I also found coffee for 25% of the price of the regular store (or online), items from the get together and breakfast shake mix for 50% of regular price at local stores.

A third stop in Small Town later in the week to pick up meat and eggs on sale found me using my card again, since I did not take my purse and only had my driver’s license and credit card on me.  I really like the ease of not having a purse to keep track of, but realize that this means I have to think about what cash I also have on me.

Sunday morning I stopped at 2 different stores in Big Town after church.  The first I paid cash, the second I used my card as I was buying more than groceries.  (Halloween costumes were 90% off and we needed to buy new shoes.) I did a much better job of sticking to my shopping list and actually decided I could make substitutions with what I already had at home, rather than pay $5.xx per pound for a roast.

Overall, not the most perfect of efforts.  However, I was much more aware of how I was paying.  Seems going to cash is going to take more effort than I thought it would.

Pot Roast with Bacon and Vegetables collage

Linked up with OrgJunkie.

For more ideas also check out This Week For Dinner.

Also check out Confessions of a Homeschooler’s November’s Monthly Meal Plan.