Showing posts from October, 2017

Black Bean Soup

While we are in Indiana visiting family, I'm also stocking my father in law's freezer with easy single serve things for him to grab and reheat to eat.

He's diabetic and just doesn't always think to eat. Most times, he's not even hungry but realizes that he's not eaten for 14 or so hours (skips breakfast, nibbles for lunch and expects dinner at 5pm) so this is perfect for when we are NOT there. 

Funny enough, the one time I was under a Pantry Challenge, the Boy had been eating all my black beans, apparently. I went to make this one evening and imagine my surprise that I couldn't find any black beans!

Oh! By the way!


Anyways. It would seem that Sonny Boy has been doing his own meal prepping and is putting together the fixings for knock of Chipolte Burritos using brown rice (pantry) corn (pantry) and ... you guessed it, black beans (pantry). I can't be mad at the kid, you know? ;-) So there was an Aldis trip bright and early in the morn…

Shallot Chicken Thighs

This recipe comes from Paleo Girl 99 who I found on Instagram ... doing the Whole30 a while back had introduced me to a whole new class of bloggers!

So. The first time I made this, I didn't have the dehydrated shallots, but had dehydrated onions, so I improvised and used the onions.

Yeah. Hubby was in love.  Asked me for 3 days if this was really the only thing that I did to make it taste so good. Was I sure it was just the dehydrated onions and not the "fried onions"  and on and on.

Good grief. He just can't accept that something so simple would be so tasty. I did NOT share that this was Whole30 approved as some things just don't need to be said out loud.

Then I put this on the menu again and said, hmmm, let me just order some shallots from Amazon. Well. The first thing that popped up was $1xx.00 to buy. No thank you ... so I kept shopping and finally came across a $12 bottle. Thank you one click ordering!

So, here's how I made it the first time with GREAT s…

Menu Plan & Meal Prep

Still here in NW Indiana ... NO internet to be provided to the house as of yet. Good grief. I ended up going to Verizon in town and just buying a pay as you go phone with hotspot as our little jetpack bit the dust and it was more expensive to buy a new one of those than an actual phone. AND it's cheaper on a per month basis so I figured what the heck ... at least I'll have a phone that works here too ...

And that, my friends, is not so very frugal and it will show up on the Frugal Activities report later this week so check back ...

Otherwise, everything is just fine!

Cold? Yup!
Snow flurries? Yup!
Laundry mat? Yup!

Just like the old days! What's not like the old days is the menu planning and meal prepping! Never did that when I was younger ... my parents would get paid on Friday, so we'd do Friday night at Shakee's, Saturday night at Red Lobster, Sunday night at Arbies, Monday at McDonalds or KFC and then Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday would be the boxed macaroni …

Grocery Shops in Review

Hey, hey … have you missed these posts?? I haven’t really been buying much of anything outside the baby shower festivities requirements so I just left it alone…
BUT now we are in Indiana and well, why not?
We arrived on Monday and after finding out the DMV is closed on Mondays (??!!) we figured we’d swing by Aldi first and pick up some veggies and such. Held off on meat and other things til we get a meal plan together and check out the pantry and freezers.  Should have went with my gut instincts as there’s not a whole lot of ANYTHING to review in the pantry and freezer at the house!
Oh no, welcome to the dark days of the Midwest
Aldi – October 23, 2017 Total Spent - $107.50
Bag of kettle corn $1.99 2 bags of baby carrots $.49 each Paper plates $2.99 3 bottles of sparkling water $.59 each Bottle of foaming hand soap $1.49 2 6 pks ice tea $3.99 each Box of clubhouse like crackers $1.69 3 shopping bags $1.99 (grrr, I packed 2 and they were at the house already) 2 bags of frozen shredded h…

Frugal Activities!

I figured I’d get back on the Frugal Activities train and start sharing my week in review!
I know a lot of you like these posts because I share the frugal things I've done in the past week and the not so frugal things as well … some are good and some are bad. It’s all about full disclosure! So start checking back on Thursday or Friday and hopefully I will have these up to share. I used to do these on Saturday BUT I’ve decided to keep the Grocery Shops in Review on that day as it’s a habit for me now to share! Don’t mess with a good thing, right?
So! You may have picked up that I’m in NW Indiana for about 17 days and well, the first few days we blew some serious cash. I finally told Hubby that we needed to rein ourselves in and get focused. Seeing my morning bank account alert freaked me out a little. So much so that I felt the need to move some cash from my savings account over to the checking account. And then I freaked out again as the savings account was lower than I’d lik…

French Onion Soup

*We are up in Indiana and as always, I try to make some favorites to share with the family! This is so on the menu because it's COOL for me and Hubby and will be nice to eat without sweating from the 80 plus degree weather! So here's a repost for you! 

I've had this recipe since 1998! That's a long time to keep a recipe so you know it's good!

I've made this specific recipe a quite a few times, but then I get distracted with a newer recipe and try that ... and ALWAYS have to listen to Hubby ask why I don't just stick with the first one I have... he's right.

So, Saturday, it was a nice, sunny, BEAUTIFUL day, high of around 86. But the nights are getting a little cooler, and this morning it was 72 when I went outside at 8am ... hence, it's FALL TIME in Paradise, time to make soups!

The sprinkler dudes were here making repairs, and since they were digging up in the back yard, I didn't really want to toss on the ole bikini and jump in the pool to float .…

Buffalo Chicken Salad

So, hey, I'm sitting up here in Northwest Indiana freezing my booty off ... I was excited about some cooler temps but when I checked from Florida, it was like a high of 70 and low in the mid 50's. Uhm, weather people are sooo clueless ... it's a high of 50! 

I suppose I should take a new picture and make it pretty, huh?
My father in law is diabetic. And swears that he doesn't really dislike anything.

Except chicken breast.  


He's opted not to eat the protein one night becuase it was chicken breast. To be 100% honest it was Ranchy Chicken in the Crockpot. With LOTS of gravy/saucy stuff. 

Wouldn't eat it. Opted to just eat the buttery egg noodles.

I think I may have given him attitude for a bit there. 

Anyways, I'm trying again. Cuz, you know, I'm all about showing people that good food is easy to make. 

Uh huh.

And this recipe is SO EASY! And low carb. Perfect for a diabetic man in his mid 70's. Who may or may not be a little stubborn.

Here's what…

Paleo / Whole30 Salsa Chicken

*Repost time ... I'm crunched on time here this week with the Baby Shower on Saturday and us getting in the car and driving 1200 miles that same evening. I'm questioning WHY I would even tell Hubby we can do it, no big deal?? I guess, once again, I was overly optimistic, no problem? I was planning for this to be dinner but because I was running late from work, Hubby just took matters in his own hands. Guess I should be thankful he's not afraid of the kitchen, huh? 

It's time to start using the Instant Pot a little more as the days are getting longer, the sun is up higher and it's getting hotter in the kitchen! Who wants to slave over dinner?

Just a little inside scoop: Hubby has used the thing MORE than me ... he's become the designated cook lately and well, he doesn't always follow the directions and we've had a few flops ...

Back to an EASY meal that only uses a few ingredients.  All you need is the following:

2 pounds of boneless, skinless chi…

Whole30 General Tso - Crockpot Style

When you got a long day in the office, it's nice to come home to a home that smells like dinner is ready to be served ...

Doing the Whole30 will sometimes make you feel like an outcast ... it will be a little difficult to go out for dinner and drinks with friends, and forget the fast food or take out joints!

BUT ... this might, just maybe, fill that void! Grab yourself a bag of riced cauliflower from Trader Joe's (or any store now!) and you can almost call it a take out meal!

2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces *I strongly recommend using thighs so you won't have dried out chicken!
4 cups of stir fry veggies (frozen is fine, just check the ingredients to make sure no funky stuff added to "preserve")
1.5 tsp of ginger
1 tsp of red pepper flakes
1/4  c coconut aminos (most grocery stores are carrying this now!)
5 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tsp sesame oil
1/4 cup of green onions, sliced thin
salt and pepper to taste

Add everythin…

Spaghetti Squash Crock Pot Style

This is one of those veggies that I just want to LOVE but instead, I find it to be  sort of just, ok.

Maybe part of the problem is prepping the damn thing and taking your life in your own hands when you go to cut it.

Yeah. It's not pretty.

So then I found out I could cook it in the Instant Pot ... sweet!

But I still had to cut it. And then removing it while it was steaming hot was a little concerning.

I'm such a sissy sometimes.

And then came along the crock pot option.

Why not?

So I gave it a shot. And I'm impressed!

Impressed enough to share with you how I did it!

Ready to make some fake noodles and make your family roll their eyes??

Good, let's get to it!

1 medium size spaghetti squash. Ok, honestly I haven't the faintest idea how you pick a "good" one ... I look for one that's firm, heavy, pretty yellow and a nice stem end ... if you have tips, by all means, share with me! *Today's star was picked up at Trader Joe's. Organic. The whole thi…

Meal Planning and Prepping

Hey, did you see the latest Grocery Shops in Review post? Spent a lot of money but don't see a whole lot of food! Don't you hate when that happens??

That means I'm going to have to Menu Plan and Meal Prep! Wheee!!

We had new appliances finally delivered the previous week ... everything is installed, just waiting for the tile to set under the dishwasher so we can slide that bad boy in ... sooooo excited to use all the new stuff! I even had Hubby swap out the faucet on the sink and the lights overhead. What a difference.

AND if someone decides they want to buy the house NOW, I'm fine with that as well ... I can do the same to a new house!

We are hosting the Princess Baby Shower in two weeks so I need to stay ultra-focused on money and food ... after that party, we head out of town for a few weeks which means I really need to stay focused!!

Sunday - Chinese at Home - going to make up a bag or two of that chicken I picked up at Trader Joe's a few weeks ago, along with a…