Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Pantry Challenge in January...

I am still thinking how I can modify this project from (links to go here-HELP!!if you read this I cannot make links - please leave a comment on how - please!!!! ) with how I have to shop because of our income. This (I'm sure) is the last month that my family gets dedicated food money and from Feb on out it is spending cash. In the past few years I have spent about $200 cash per month and $200 SNAP benefits - the new name for Food Stamps - lol - therefore, if I do receive these benefits I want to spend them like I did in December spending $$ to stock up my pantry even more with staples, seasonings, and flavorings.
From Feb on I also spend around $25 each month stocking up my pantry because I work for the school district and am off school for 2 1/2 months in the summer and that is when we really live off our pantry. So suffice it to say perhaps Jan in not the best month for me to be taking this project on??
What I am for sure going to do is to follow others so when do use my pantry as planned so I will have many other ideas to fall back on and the wisdom of other peoples experiences to gleen from.
What I will be doing in Jan is organizing and cleaning out my pantry taking out items that have expired or items that we will just not eat.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Menu Plan Monday - Last week of the year

Hello all, I just got an image uploaded. I know for some no biggie but I am learning this as I go and computers are not natural to me. My kids well, it's in their DNA but I am old as dirt and definitely before computers!!! Anyway here we are the last week of 2009 to do some simple menu planning. I want to remember to link back to http://www.orgjunkie.com/ for more meal plans also http://www.cafemom.com/ in Crock Pot Moms, mommythree0508 has a great week (week 126) of meals planned and in Frugal and Thrifty moms, TonyaLea never fails with her choices.

As for me and mine here is what I have planned as of now and as usual I will update daily what we actually did eat. This is because I reserve the right to alter or change my planned menu for any reason at any time. However, with this being the last week of the month (payday on Thursday) most items will be consumed as planned since choices are a bit more limited.

Mon:: spagheti, peas and garlic toast had soup and popcorn since we had a later hearty lunch and McD treat at 5

Tue:: chicken enchilada casserole another late hearty lunch so had ham and eggs with toast and fruit

Wed:: chili dogs and fries or pizza chicken taco soup in CP-already together in CP in refer

Thu:: Fast food and party faire late night as planned also having extra kids??

Fri:: depends on what is on sale at the grocery tonight pizza??

Sat::soup and sammys, or?? same as friday or LO's

Sun::CP pot roast, veggies and potatoes expect as planned

Also, anybody have any insight onto Super Cook?? I want to be able to use it but am finding some limitations because I do keep a fairly complete pantry and freezer. If you read this, GREAT, please follow me and/or comment so I know I'm not alone out here in the great big blogosphere Thanks.....Julie

PS::looks like I am having challenges linking this with MPM I'll keep trying until I get it done...J

PSS:: I got it done and you guy are coming by, please feel free to leave a comment.....J

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

menu plan monday

This menu,as usual, is a work in progress. I just did my freezers inventory so I have a little better idea of its contents. These next 2 weeks are a bit challenging since both kids are home from school all meals as well the grandkids who are becoming frequent visitors as their independance increases.(They can now ride bikes the few blocks by themselves) Also as usual, I reserve the right to alter or change this plan at any day and any time for any reason--hehehe--however with it being the end of the month most things will be consumed as planned.

Mon::created chicken,noodles, and gravy with brocoli side-as planned
Tue::chicken fajita pitas and a banana-as planned
Wed::corn dogs and fries with canned fruit had pizza
Thu::pozole,rolls and appetizers, creative desserts done
Fri ::pot roast veggies and potatoes included, creative desserts
going to be stew, rolls, and desserts
Sat::LOs, sammys, brocoli potatoes,etc... may exchange with friday
Sun::chicken noodle soup in crock salsa chicken over rice

While doing my freezer this A.M. I discovered I have several opened bags of chicken pieces that I need to fully utilize so I will be having more chicken recipes than normal.I will also be looking for some creative budget friendly recipes as well, so if you read this please send any suggestions. Again, as usual, I should update as the days get done.....Julie

PS::Almost forgot, Don't forget to find other menu plans at http://www.orgjunkie.com/, I know I'm enjoying reading others ideas at MPM.....J

Sunday, December 13, 2009

menu plan monday

Meal planning, I am struggling with this issue right now. I am not being very creative thus frugal because I just use instead of use with a purpose. My menu needs to be adaptable to feed 4, 5, or 6 as this may be changing (due to friends forclosure-upside, she brings a working stove with her, and her son, hehehe) just don't know when. I need to take stock of what is in the freezer and put my food dates in order. As of now this is what I have planned. This is always subject to change.I try to update daily both here and CafeMom.

Mon 12-14 CP beef fajita and go alongs, pineapple
ate as planned pineapple was fresh & yummy
Tue 12-15 ham and eggs on toast with fruit and yogurt smoothie
had as planned smoothie was real good!!
Wed 12-16 chicken nugget salad, garlic bread
made taco soup with chips&cheese and choc ice cream
Thu 12-17 taco soup, rolls may exchange for 12-16
12-18 menu
Fri 12-18 corn dogs,fries,fruit salad
leftovers and whatever u find
Sat 12-19 chicken fajita pitas, orange slices
steak and gravy over mashed, corn
Sun 12-20 sliced beef and gravy over mashed, corn
chicken fajita pita, orange slices

PS::::: I am so proud of myself, I finally was sucessful in getting this post on the MPM Mr Linky. I have been trying for a few weeks and I finally figured it out!!! I am so dense sometimes lol yet persistant to a fault and I got it done!!! might not always be right but it gets done.....Julie

Monday, December 7, 2009

meals week of December 7 to 13

This is my main shopping week for the month and the last month that I will get food stamps that I know of (I may get jan-still up in air)so while shopping I need to get as many staples as possible.
To make matters worse our only car broke down and it is at least $200 more to fix. I am trying to save up for a newer car but life keeps chopping away at anything I get put away.

Mon 12-07 helper,green beans, garlic bread
had Moms nacho supreme
Tue 12-08 chcken burritos and pineapples
had tv dinners & misc snacks
Wed 12-09 sani food deli
had beef stew in can and bread
thu 12-10 fast food-out of town
had chili dogs, corn & orange slices
fri 12-11 veggie soup and rolls
undecided shopping sales were different than expected.
Sat 12-12 creamy chicken/mushroom strogonoff
expect as planned as already have
sun 12-13 CP pot roast and trimmings
expect as planned church day!!!!!

As usual, there is a disclaimer that I reserve the right to alter/change the planned menu at any time for any reason.Hormones be damned

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Meal Plan for this week 11-30 to 12-6-09

OK time to get started back to the routine of things for the next 3 weeks then it's a string of Saturdays again. My menu should be as follows

Mon 11-30 tuna helper, peas, garlic toast-as planned
Tue 12-1 sani food deli samwiches(still~out to dinner)
Wed 12-2 BBQ steak, pototoes,steamed carrots-Papa Murphy's
Thu 12-3 ham,egg&potato burritos,fruit salad-as planned
Fri 12-4 out of town-as planned
Sat 12-5 corn dogs, fries,mixed fruit-as planned
Sun 12-6 salibury steak, rice,grapes-as planned

This week of the month is always so hard as we tend to have to travel to see out of town relatives and DH has a thing about taking his family out to dinner on payday. (Who am I to fight such an atrocity??lol)
In the recent past our dedicated food money was on the 9th and my payday on the 10th but times are a'changin' and I need to alter our budget without these benefits. This is a mixed blessing and I know with great study I will learn how to further reduce our grocery spending.I can do this, I can do this, chugga chugga chug chug my caboose is draggin'. Silver lining is I have $200 food money this final month to stock up my pantry.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

stuffing try outs

OK, so i am creating a stuffing for thanksgiving. Let's be truthful I am craving the turkey day goodies. anyeay, I make a loaf of bread in the breadmaker the other day. It fell and the kids were not fans of the flavor but I thought what great bread cubes these would be so here we are. i cut them, seasoned with poultry seasoning, italian seasoning, S&P, garlic and onion powder, let sit overnight, im am melted butter added 1/2 chop onion, 1 celery, 4 mushrooms, 1/2 apple pour over cubes, cook 2 chx breast in 2 cup water till poached add water to stuffing chop up chx add in, soak 4 dates and apricots chopped in 1 c water to boiling, sit 10 min add in. mix together in 9x13 put in roaster at 250 for 4 hours oh and dots and shreds of butter throughout. It smells good I am waiting!
Well, mixed results, I think it had too much poultry seasoning and that was my doing I believe I used T instead of t and bread cubes needed to be a bit smaller. The guys did like the chicken piecess flavor so see mixed. I liked the dried fruit.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

November menu

Well, it's done, the mass once a month shopping that we do at the out of town stores. All groceries are put away and the menu for the rest of the month is completed, ready....

11/12-BBQ chicken legs, fried rice, corn on the cob as planned
11/13 egg rolls (meal in one) coconut shrimp menu from the 29th
11/14-CP pot roast tuna/pbj,chips&dip,mixed fruit
11/15-pozole and rolls chicken, pot&gravy,peas, mixed fruit
11/16-hamburger helper veggie soup & garlic toast JIB tacos YUM!!!
11/17-ham and eggs on english muffins with fruit and yogurt smoothie ate 11/20 menu
11/18-chicken patty,mashed potatoes, mixed fruit had 11/16 menu
11/19-porcupine balls, rice, green beans bacon and egg burritos, pineapple slices
11/20-bean/cheese burritos and pineapple slices spaghetti and corn
11/21-CP BBQ shredded pork sammys, cole slaw as planned
11/22-tacos(meat, beans, and fixins) as planned beef and chx
11/23-tuna helper,peas, and garlic bread egg rolls, fried rice
11/24-yogurt pancakes,sausage patties,kiwi as planned
11/25-CP pot roast-moved from 11/14 or fast food pizza
11/26-Thanksgiving traditional menu
11/27-leftovers spaghetti, green beans and bread
11/28-BBQ steak,potatoes,steamed carrots LO turkey,brocoli,rav soup
11/29-tuna helper, peas and garlic bread expect as planned or CP roast
11/30-chicken fajita pitas can't wait for these

this menu is not hard and fast but I try to follow the plan because I spread apart the meat items (no same meat 2 nights in a row) Monday and Tuesday menus are usually followed because we are busy those nights so I choose easier preparation items. Sundays, I do try to do crock-pot menus since we are in church 10 am & 6 pm. and for Fridays I do try to plan items that do not include meat - not religious just how we did it growing up.Normally I don't have leftovers as we eat them for lunches and this will be even more so since I am homeschooling for awhile while DS#8 (child #)changes psych meds and hopefully becomes more stable.
I still have some things I need to pick up at the store maybe around $25 including 3 more gallons of milk to get through the month.Oh yeah and I got the wrong hot cereal so I may have to pay retail to get the right stuff since it is not economical to go back to Chico Grocery Outlet to get the right stuff and we do not eat this wrong stuff.(saved receipt for next trip to return next month)
I have to plan this month for breakfasts and lunches as we all have a week off for holiday.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Nov 9th thru 16th menus

well, this is what I have so far
Monday 11-9 Honker meals (deli sammy's)
Tuesday 11-10 tuna helper and corn with ciabatta roll.
Wednesday 11-11 will be fast food since it will be shopping day then I will come home, unload all the groceries, put away and create meals/menus from sales I got this is the downfall of shopping at stores (WinCo and Grocery Outlet) that do not have too much advertisement My Walmart doesn't have a meat dept so no $20 turkey dinner however, I may pick up 2 smaller birds if I can get to a Safeway then have the butcher cut then in half for meals throughout the year I will update this after Wednesday with the remainder of my menu plans

Saturday, October 17, 2009

last week of october menu

so for this last week of October I have left in my monthly menus salisbury steaks, 1/2 and 1/2 rice and steamed carrots, new pork CP recipe with fruit over egg noodles, tuna helper and fruit, BBQ drummies, couscous and canned veggie, a CP chicken entree with stuffing, CP pot roast with potatoes and veggies. I see that I plan on keeping my crockpot busy this week.

Su-CP pork with fruit over egg noodles
M-tuna helper and fruit
W- CP chicken and veggies with stuffing
Th-BBQ drumssticks, couscous and veggies
F- slalisbery steak, rice and steamed carrots
Sa- halloween out to dinner

This is definatley going to change

meal plan october 18 to Oct 24

Here goes my 2nd week of menu planning after a time off. It did seem to help to get back on the horse again in the meal planning arena. So this weeks I have planned so far to include

Su- BBQ pork ribs and potatoes with canned apricots (from last weeks menu)
M- canned veggie soup and pbj sammies(Church choir for Mom)
T- orange chicken over 1/2 and /12 rice, with steamed veggies
W- very banana pancakes and sausage(may exchange for T if AWANA)
Th- hamburger helper and green beans
F- chicken taco soup and rolls
Sa-BBQ salmon and lil corn, with fried rice

For this next week I will need a gallon or 2?? of milk, a box of cereal and some fresh fruits and veggies. I really want some cabbage but lets see if I can afford it this week since I shop at the local food for more store. I'm trying a no bake from scratch cheesecake for desserts and looking for a brownie from a mix recipe in a crockpot without a coffee can~~these choices are since I don't have an oven (We're saving right now....to fix or replace that is the question!!!)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009

meal plan monday October 12 - 18

Heres what I created after our day-long-together-time-mass-shopping-event.

Su-BBQ pork ribs, BBQ baked potatoes, applesauce
had CP chicken parm over noodles with pears
M-tuna helper and corn
had as planned
T-beef tacos and fixins with pineapple slices
had porcupine balls with rice, spinich, and applesauce
W-egg muffin ham sammy with fruit & yogurt smoothie
time will tell but thinking lentil/rice burritos with pineapple slices
Th-porcupine balls with rice and green beans
so then tonight would be the egg muffin menu
F- tilapia, alfredo noodles, pear slices
still researching recipes but will probably do this fried since I don't have an oven yet
Sa-salsa chicken over rice
if not cold then BBQ the ribs,potatoes, and green beans

I noticed in my shopping I missed some fruits and veggies I still need some brocolli, cabbage, lettuce, pineapple slices, refried beans, and peach salsa. Also to round out the month I will need another round of fresh F&V($5) and milk and cereal ($5) so probably another $17.50 total.

Todays grocery shopping and together time

OK so poor planning on a saturday but we did our rest of the month grocery shopping today however, I think we did rather well. It was our together time as we left the kids with older siblings for the afternoon.We spent about $215 on food and $250 total. In that was 2 adult sized fruit of the loom hoodies from Grocery Outlet for $5 a piece one for hubby and one for son who grows out of everything all the time. We spent $79.92 $58.56 being food at Grocery Outlet $28.99 at Dollar tree $16 being food. $57.19 at Wal-mart $54.48 being food. This visit was exciting because my WM is changing from a store to a center and they got most of their freezer stuff in.Then Winco~the worst of it~we spent over $100 so I made DH take stuff back it was embarrassing but it needed to be done (we don't need grapes at $2 a pound) - (or 4 cans of chili)our final total came to $84.44 all being food. All this covers dinners for family of 4, snacks for a family 4 breakfasts and lunches for mom and dad all week but weekends for kid through the end of October. Also, stocked up on sugar, some seasonings and spent $20 at butcher getting some pork chops, ribs, and hamburger. what I still need for the month is a head of cabbage, milk and maybe another box of cereal like rice crispies so now the hard part after putting it all away is menu planning we start back to school on Monday and hit it hard through November so I need to be on the top of my game plan for best success I should soon figure out how to post in on meal plan mondays!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Hello all

Hi fellow blogspotters I have been lurking for awhile and have finally decided to try out the blog thing. I am here to get meal ideas, budgeting tips, and housekeeping skills. Maybe also keep up on some keyboarding skills since I am mainly a stay at home mom with nothing to do except my 2 hour a day job.