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Saturday, January 30, 2010

It's Saturday. Saturday afternoon, matter of fact. 2:15pm at this very moment. I am sitting at the kitchen table, nursing a slight headache (too many beers last night), listening to hubby and sonny boy tear apart the wood deck right outside the window. Hubby went and bought himself a BFH. Ok, I will not elaborate what a BFH is, but it has a long wooden handle, and a 6 lb weighty thing at the end. And it's for big jobs. Such as tearing up the wood deck. Sonny Boy is using the big crow bar along with the crow bar screw driver looking thing (would that be classified as a BFSD?) The sawzaw (??) and the chainsaw have both made appearances. I've got 911 predialed on both the cell and the house phone :) One can never be too prepared. The alternative was for me to go shopping and blow my budget. Sonny Boy has just put on work gloves. After 2 hours of this. But then comes in and ask for a stick of deoderant (?) and a papertowel. After he washes his hands real well and dries them, he takes papertowel and rubs deoderant on open cuts. What in the world are you doing kid??? Apparently it stops the bleeding and seals it. Huh. What do I know, as his mother? Except that a: should have put gloves on in the beginning and b) go get a bandaid!!! His poor musician hands are so cut up ... I've been assured not from old rusty nails or wood, but the equipment hes using. Now I need go check Hubby and make sure he doesn't need some medical attention. Oh. What have I been doing? Making bread. Italian bread. Determined I should have went shopping afterall and bought myself a baquette pan :)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Pantry Challenge and determined

to stick with it at least to the end of the MONTH!

Stopped by Publix this morning down the street from work.

1. Looking for a coupon book
2. Looking for more wine tag coupons ($1 off salad)
3. Wanted a banana (or 2) for the office

Didn't find the coupon book ... Got me some more wine tags for $1 off bags of salad AND $1 off one avocado (!!!!)

Got me some coupons for $1 off pack of EXTRA gum and any cola (thinking dasani water bottles) ...

AND picked up:

bag of coleslaw $1.49
one lonely Hess Avocado $1.49
2 bananas.

After my $2 off coupons, paid $1.41. Darn bananas cost almost as much as the coleslaw and avocado. Geesh, 69 cents per lb. So ... I'm good to go.

I want to make turkey, avocado, spinach paninis Teriyaki Chicken Thighs and Sesame noodles , Chicken Cesar Salad, BBQ pork and coleslaw ... but now thinking more like smoked beef and coleslaw, baked taters and broccoli and cheese soup. And ... the rest of the pasta. No particular order or day. Just what I have planned and on hand.

 Feel like you are in a rut on ideas for dinner? Hop on over to Menu Plan Monday to get a whole bunch of ideas (careful, you may change your menu!!)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Who ARE You?

Recently, I was talking to a girlfriend of mine who made a confession that surprised me. She was slightly offended that her boyfriend of over a year did not introduce her as "My girlfriend, K..." Hmmm. This was really an issue for her.... That made me think. When I introduce my hubby, do I say, "my husband, M?" Or do I say "this is M, my hubby" ... or simply, hold his hand, arm, waist, etc, and say "this is M"? I think all 3 ... and then I thought of how he introduces me. First off, before I go any further into this conversation, you need to know a few things: he's my high school sweetheart, meaning, the honeymoon is way over... we know each other better than most people since we've spent over half our lives together... we are not touchy, feely, clingy (you know the type) and are very secure in being OURSELF yes, we do complete each other, but do NOT feel that our life is incomplete without the other (does that sound wrong??) When we go to a gathering, we do split up and meet again throughout the night, we do not stand and hold hands all night long. So...moving on. "Hi, this is J" with a little touch on my back, arm, etc. Does that bother me? No way. I mean, shoot. I am much more than just a wife. I'm a mom. I'm a daughter. I'm a friend. I'm a nemsis :) so hey, if you want a proper introduction, be sure to add allllll that in :) How do you like to be introduced?

Eating from the Pantry

Continues ... for the next week. Sunday would officially be the end but I really think I need to continue on into February. $30 a week sound reasonable? That's $10 per person (cat not included, but he's got caught up in the stockpiling frenzy too) ... I have done HORRIBLE. Ok. Not 'that' bad, but bad enough where I feel it was a failure. Ok. Maybe that's a little dramatic (who, ME?) We have emptied out some of the older stuff. Donated some stuff. THREW AWAY some stuff. But I've also bought stuff. The first 10 days started out pretty well. Stayed away from the stores. But then something happened. Oh. Yeah. I had friends coming over. Hubby decided he didn't want to pat out the hamburger so I had to go back to the meat section and buy patties in ADDITION to the ground beef. Oh, yeah. Then I needed chips. And instead of buying beer, I decided I would drink wine. Oh. No. You better get some beer, just in case (mind you, I had not had a beer since before new years eve ... I love my ice cold beer on the weekend) ... I pretty much went down hill from there. So I went to the store this weekend (Sunday to be exact) ... needed milk. And a few other things. Had a detailed coupon list. $30 in my envelope. (and $20 in my stash for thrifty shopping allowance for the month) ... kept track as I went. Did I mention that it was playoffs too...that we HAD to watch the Colts to see if they were coming to visit in Miami in 2 weeks? Chips, white popcorn kernels, sour cream for dip, milk, tylenol pm, 6 boxes of pancake/waffle mix (came to less than $1 each after my coupon), borax, salad dressing (2 bottles), 6 pkgs of sliced cheese. Hmmm. I spent $49 and saved $48. Oh, and 2 papers. So, what could I have done without? $5 popcorn (coupons were in paper too that I missed!), chips, pancake/waffle mix, that was definately a stockpile move, salad dressing, and most definately, the cheese (even though we use it a lot, 6 were not necessary, even with coupon) ... Oh well, such is life, live and learn, move on, blah blah blah :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Sort of an update on Eating from the Pantry

Well, sort of. As you read, I fell off the wagon, or rather, succumbed to pressure ... or ... lack of enthusiasm? There are so many ways to say it: I am having a very difficult time!!! Oh, I know. I'm not the only one. And it really does take a lot of will power AND support of other family members!! Princess was coming over on Tuesday evening to visit (this, in itself, is just a whole 'nother story which this is not the time NOR the place) and I wasn't sure if she was staying for dinner. I wanted to be prepared. And perhaps make her all time favorite, chicken picatta. Of course, had I known this BEFORE I left the house Tuesday morning, I could have taken the chicken and sauteed shrooms out of the freezer, but you know, real life kicked in yet again :) So with GOOD INTENTIONS, I stopped at Winn Dixie (less likely to get sucked in as I HATE shopping these stores) ... have my 2 $1 off coffee coupons for the current b1g1f sale ... and head in. Walk out spending $34. With 5 bags of stuff. 2 coffees ($3.59 for both) 2 lbs beef (Angus) bottom round steaks 4 11.14oz flat iron grill steaks (ok, there are 3 steaks per package, 100 calories, 3 grams fat each ... seemed like a good idea?!) 2 24 oz Hormel pork roast 1 lb sandwich steak beef 1 1/2 lb bottom round steak Ok, not a spectacular deal but still. Meat was all marked down and on sale to boot. My winn dixie adds the percentage off the marked down price which I forget sometimes. Had I been paying attention, I would have noticed the flat iron steaks had a coupon for $1 off inside the sleeve that I could have easily used to bring the bill to $30. So for dinner, tossed in some taters to bake, and planned on making 6 of the steaks. Nope. No can do. Already ate dinner (princess) and hubby was just being crummy. Oh well. Such is life. I did set up my cash envelope for the rest of the month. $60. Divided in 2. This should be so easy to pull off, right???

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Eating from the Pantry

We always start out with good intentions, right? :) Hubby seems to be in the mood to eat out lately. Not your typical run of the mill fast food places though, japanese takeout, sweet tomatoes, italian joint (non pizza, strictly go there for the garlic rolls) and a little place called Ernies. Most of the places are running under $30 for the 3 of us with coupons. I've done very well on the shopping front though! I didn't step foot in a store for 10 days! 10 days folks!! I mean, heck, I got the milk from Walgreens for 50 cents less than the store ... hubby swears it doesn't taste as good, but him and Sonny Boy drank it all. But then yesterday came. The end (at last!) to our brutal cold snap we had. Finally, people want to hang outside, eat, drink and be merry! Woohoo ... I know what the term cabin fever means now so I'm all in! Of course, I'm NOT prepared to entertain, meaning nothing defrosted, but that's ok, I was thinking along the lines of burgers and dogs on the grill anyways. So I get the hamburger, grab the trusty Publix coupon for $1 off 2 lbs (still expensive though!), burger & dog buns, milk, cheese, gatorade, crystal light, coffee, ice cream, potatoes, back to get bagel thins and english muffins, regular bagels, beer, wine, and the list goes on. $101. Oh. Swipe 3 gift cards. Swipe debit card for $33. Hmmm. Get home. Unload the bags. Look at the Pantry. Look at the Freezer. Shake my head. Glance at the big, long receipt. Notice the donation at the end. Feel a little better about the trip. Say a small prayer that I went to the new produce stand BEFORE Publix. Admire the 33 cent starfruit. And say all is ok. That folks, is just acceptance. I was starting to beat myself up on the amount of groceries, and, YES, stockpile items, but then just realized that I may not have went the FULL month, but I certainly gave it a good effort. I'm not quitting. Oh no. I will move forward and continue the best I can. Guess whats for dinner tonight (Saturday)? Ribs. Hubby will be so happy. And either scalloped or augratin potatoes.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Eating from the Pantry

Day 5. How many more days are there in this month?? It's 39 degrees this morning, the start of day 6. I could eat soup every stinkin day at this rate ... uggg. Brrrr Ok,focus, focus, focus. Day 5. Tuesday. Only Tuesday? Breakfast, cereal, egg & bacon on bagel. Oranges Lunch, salad, soup, rest of ham for sandwich for hubby Dinner, scounge for something on your own guys. I'm tired. Sonny Boy found a pizza (where did THAT come from??), hubby had mac & cheese with turkey (??) The pizza? Ummm. Well. Hmmm. Winn Dixie had a sale going on. Not a GREAT sale, but with my coupons, made it much better. 2 pizzas, 1 bryers ice cream, 1 box mozz sticks, 1 box garlic breadsticks, 1 2 ltr bottle of coke, $11.47. And I had $1 off 4 of those items, so the price was $7.47. Of course, bought a few other things, such as coffee creamer, but not milk or eggs. Duh.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The most used frugal kitchen gadget so far this week

Has been: Of course, mine is not black. Nor is it sleek & state of the art looking. Rather, it's a faded white, almost dingy cream looking, dating back probably from the late 1980's. Oh. And the reason its frugal? It was dumpster dived (doved?) / retrieved back in the late 90's. And the reason it's the most used? Because its been borderline freezing cold down here in South Florida. I've got the heat cranking on both sides of the house. I know, 43 is not cold by alot of your standards right about now, but for us it is!!! Oh, and the headline I find of interest this morning? This extended 'chill' may just kill off the iguanas! Ok, not that I wish they were dead, or die off, but rather, relocate anywhere but MY yard ... this is sort of 'good' news!

Eating from the Pantry

Day 4. Only 4 days into it??? Stopped at the store on way home from work. Needed: eggs, cat food, lettuce, sandwich bread. For $12 (all on a Publix gift card), bought sandwich bread, iceburg lettuce, 4 value size boxes of nature granola bars (yogurt ones are highly recommended & yummy, $3 for all 4 boxes), 4 100 calorie nabisco snack cakes (ok, these are a RIP OFF as there are 5 sleeves in each box, with 3 cookie/cakes. That's only 15 for $3??? Thankfully they were b1g1f with my $1 off on top). 2 6pks bottle water for Sonny Boy for school (99 each after coupon). Bypassed the eggs. Think I can get the big crate cheaper at GFS. Bypassed the cat food. Think (and that would be a big BOLD think) that Target has a giftcard offer going on right now for the cat food that I buy. Breakfast, cereal, leftover cinnamon rolls and egg/bacon on bagel. Lunch, pb & jelly for Sonny Boy (his request), salad, soup for me & hubby (hubby also had a ham sandwich on sandwich thin bread I found in freezer) Dinner, tacos (from freezer, made with ground turkey) and the rest of ingredients from pantry/fridge except the lettuce. Not so bad I suppose, but I've spent $24 already this week on my first real week and I still need eggs and cat food and before much longer, milk. Crumb!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Eating from the Pantry

Day 3. Isn't it sort of wrong to start something like this when you are home for 3 to 4 days straight? I mean, I get a little stir crazy ... Actually, it wasn't all that bad. BUT I did need to run to the pet store for chewey scratchy flea medicine (the not so thrifty part of having a pet) and had a small list for store: eggs, bread, pizza rolls, cat food, tomatoe soup and spaghetti-os . Yeah, I got everything EXCEPT eggs, cat food, and sandwich bread. Uh huh. $12 later and what do you know?? At least Sonny Boy will have food to make a quick meal with when he gets home from school. Let me explain before you all say WHAT?? He eats breakfast at 6am. Gets to school at 6:50am. Eats lunch at 10:50. Gets home at 3:40. Now, can someone please explain to me who planned THAT lunch hour??? Yeah, he's ravished by the time he gets home. At least I get a little time when I get home from work for the "Whats for Dinner" question, which BTW, will be tacos tonight. Anyways, back to the drill. Day 3. Cereal and/or bagels for breakfast. Lunch was a scronge around for leftovers in the fridge. Dinner was french bread with tomatoe soup and the soup I made from 1 can of green beans, 1 can of corn, a package of mushrooms, a cup of rice, 3 cartons of chicken broth, a bit of minced onion from freezer, a bag of poached chicken from freezer, herbs & spices and then topped with parmsan cheese at serving. This week I have to tackle the pantry and cupboards. So not looking forward to that. Although, Sunday, I set up a bag for the food pantry at church. So far, 7 cans of cheese ravioli. Hurricane supplies that I've been assured no one would eat regardless of how hungry they were. Ok. How is everyone else doing out there??

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Eating from the Pantry

Day 2 ... a little more difficult than Day 1, not sure why. Oddly enough, we have "nothing" to eat. He. How many of you out there here that, or even say that?? Dinner ended up being macaroni & cheese with leftover ham and green salad. For some reason, it didn't give me the usual warm and fuzzy feelings. I made bacon with bagels for breakfast. Lunch was munch all you want on leftovers (still). Been making a month long menu plan based on what I see in the freezers and pantry. Will post shortly.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Inventory results of 3 freezers

And .... wholewheat pizza crust organic hd buns (don't use for buns) dinner roll (brown & serve 1/2 pk slider rolls flatout bread cheddar jack cheese parm/romano cheese swiss (shredded) parm cheese cheddar cheese mozz cheese Provolone slices fake crabmeat shrimp raw grouper large shrimp raw tilipia coconut shrimp bananas strawberries blueberries strawberries smoothies grape juice apple juice limeade chix breast perfect portion pork tenderloin chicken italian sausage chicken apple sausage sweet pork tenderloin sweet pork tenderloin turkey bacon cheddar brats ham steak hamburger ground turkey Roll sausage hot dogs boca crumbles pepperoni (box) beer bratwurst sausage links (breakfast) chicken stirfry breaded chix tenders sausage patty (cooked) ham hock turkey breast cooked chix breast poached chix italian sausage roast beef (10 oz pkg) crab cakes (reg) sausage roll chix breast chix thighs (bone in) ground sausage steak meatballs small 1/4 ham kiabalis smoked sausage crab cakes mini diced ham sweet ham lunchmeat cheddar brats polish bratwurst chix tenders raw smoked sausage strip steak whole turkey breast snausages chix thighs (bone in) chili bowls pepperoni box pepperoni bag sausage roll chix strips (om) bacon chix italian sausage chix cajun sausage ground sirloin patty stadium brats hot dogs chix cordon bleu chix broc & cheese chix scallop & lobster lean/hot pockets almonds pine nuts popsickle toaster strudle pepperstrips onions & peppers ginger (fresh) broccoli cuts carrots & celery corn asparagus fries/onion rings sugar snap peas mixed veggie green beans broccoli/cauliflower easy fries chopped spinach broccoli ravioli tortellini shrooms & mozz stick fry white onions/diced/sliced pizza sauce butter butter yeast herb rice bowl Hmmm... it's pretty amazing actually once it's all typed up. I did NOT list the quantities of each here but on my spread sheet, I did. Ummm, you don't really need to know that I have 6 pkgs of bacon, or 8 pkgs of cheddar cheese, do you? Or that it seems like I really like the Chicken Sausage? I tossed quite a bit. How disappointing is that? AND I think I have room in the main fridge to buy them lobster tails that are on sale this week. Oh wait. There's the challenge. Uggg. OH ... and where there is room, its the popsicles and ice cream shelf. Notice, that is NOT on the list above? Figured we go through it fairly quickly and that stuff never gets 'lost' if you know what I mean. We have already used a few things from the freezer in the past 2 days. Last night was the spaghetti sauce and cheesecake. This morning was a package of bacon (yes, 7 packages of bacon total, not to mention the one lonely pack of turkey bacon). I definately see sausage and peppers in the very near future!

Eating from the Pantry

Day one was not so bad. We had leftovers all morning and day from New Years Eve (honeybaked turkey breast, ham slices, variety of cheeses, wings, etc.) and then for dinner, Hubby asked if I found any red sauce in the two freezers that I inventoried (still need to do the main kitchen one) and YES, matter of fact, I did find some!

So dinner was garlic rolls and pasta with my red sauce and green salad.

Sonny Boy had a friend over...they snuck in very very quietly while I was doing the Wii Yoga. Ummm, that Palm Tree stuff? Not so much a good thing for me. Wii says that I need to work on balancing my right side ... huh.
Brrrr...January 2, 2010. 7:35am. Current weather conditions:

Clear Blue Skies, east, north, south and west
Light breeze from the Northwest
Current temperature (according to my weather station): 48.2 degrees. HOLY CRAP!

Folks, this is cold for us. We live 3 blocks from the ocean and directly on waterway...it never ever gets REAL cold this side of town ... and tomorrow? Well, just check in and see!

I'm thinking I may have to turn on the heat (???!!!!) in the morning!