Sunday, May 31, 2009

Weekly Menu Plan for May 31 - June 6

We didn't stick too close to our menu plan for last week. Lots of changes were made to our week and we just rolled along with them. I decluttered my freezer space inside today, so I now know what I have available for us in these locations. I am going to try to spend very little this week and eat some of the things that we already have. I have seen numerous posts lately about eating out of the freezer and pantry, and this needs to be done at our house - to save money and the food that is getting older.

Here are the plans for the week:

Sunday - eat out (Mexican Restaurant) - my husband took us out to eat since I was still not feeling well and he's cooked all weekend so he was ready for a break, too

Monday - Fried, cubed pork chops, leftover field peas with okra, boiled new potatoes

Tuesday - Chicken and yellow rice, sweet pickles, cabbage slaw

Wednesday - Pancakes and sausage

Thursday - Crockpot roast and potatoes (I may buy some carrots for this and may not), collards (from the garden), yeast rolls

Friday - Chicken with fettucine and peppers, fried okra, garlic toast

Saturday - Chicken strips, sweet potato fries, corn on cob

For breakfasts this week, we will alternate between oatmeal, sausage biscuits, cereal, and eggs, toast and grits. Lunches will consist of sandwiches with soup or salad and leftovers.

To see other menu ideas, visit Organized Junkie's Menu Plan Monday.

Also, plan to join in with my new meme this Thursday at my declutter blog, 5 Things I Can Live Without Thursday.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

5 Things I Can Live Without Thursday

Here are my 5 Things I Can Live Without for this Thursday.
  • Internet coupons that don't print correctly - I lost 2 this week by a printer jam and by not getting the bar code printed on it for some reason - then you can't get back to it to print again once the limit is reached
  • cleaning out the refrigerator - I have put this off so long that I'm growing more than science experiments. I think I have enough mold growing in there to provide antibiotics to a small, third world country
  • washing all those dishes after cleaning out the frig. Don't you hate this part? I think this is why I put if off so long. My mother-in-law used to invite over for dinner and as I was washing up the dishes she would clean out the frig. I thought those dishes would never end.
  • thinking of all the money I have wasted in the last year on groceries that spoiled
  • containers that don't have lids - am I the only one who can never find the lid to the container that I have just put leftovers in? I know it was there yesterday. It fell out of the cabinet on me.

For more 5 Things I Can Live Without, visit Declutter a Little Each Day.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

In-Season Recipe Swap - Saving Money by Using Our Garden

This week I was going to participate in the In Season Recipe Swap at Tammy's Recipes, but I didn't realize that lettuce was the main ingredient last week. I'm just a week behind, so what? I decided to post the recipe and link to the lettuce post anyway. This recipe is one way that we have been incorporating our home garden and saving money on groceries. All of the veggies in the recipe came from our garden except the onions (ours aren't ready yet).

I got this idea from a friend's party that we went to several months back. Someone fixed a layered salad and it was awesome. I decided to replicate the salad using what I had harvested from our garden. We had several items that needed to be eaten and this is what we did with them.

Our Garden Layered Salad

Lettuce (red and green leaf)
Green peppers
Banana peppers, fresh not pickled
Crumbled bacon (I cheated and used the prepackaged kind)
Sugar or Splenda

Put each of the first 5 items in order into the salad in layers. Sprinkle in bacon bits and cheese. Cover the top with mayo. Sprinkle mayo with a little sugar or splenda. I used about 3 small packets of splenda and it was great. Note: There aren't any measurements because you make to your taste.

Frustrated with Our Stores!!

I am so frustrated today. I went to our local Piggly Wiggly to buy a few items that were on sale through today. I had done my research and gotten my Internet coupons printed only to learn that they don't accept Internet coupons. I wanted to shout, "Could you just move into the 21st century, please?" I had already found out a week or so ago that our local Dollar General Store also doesn't accept these coupons. So I am so frustrated. I have wasted my time researching the sales, wasted more time printing the applicable coupons, and wasted my time shopping in their store. ARGH!!!!

Is anyone else having this issue? Is there any recourse for this? I know they don't accept any of the coupons from the card that you refill. They probably haven't even heard of such.

Don't get me wrong. I love the internet coupons because I can search for what I want that I know is on sale and then just print as needed. I think this store is really missing out on getting some good deals for their customers. I really don't feel as though I can just say I'll never return to that store. Driving elsewhere would cost me more than the coupons would save me AND THEY KNOW IT!!

Thanks for listening to me vent. I'm through now. Until the next time I run up on this and then I'll be frustrated again.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Weekly Menu Plan for May 24-30

This week is our last full week of school (for the kids) and graduation is over. I'm hoping that it will be a little slower this week. We still have t-ball and plenty around the house to get done. This is what we're planning to have:

eat at friends' home - more birthdays in our circle of friends
Fried turkey breast, sweet potatoes, speckled butter beans
Grilled hot dogs, cucumber salad, broccoli salad
BBQ Chicken Packet (found blog hopping the weekend), potato salad, collards from garden
Crock Pot Roast, new potatoes from our garden, Italian green beans
Hot wings, macaroni and cheese, cole slaw (cabbage is ready in the garden)
Fajitas, Spanish rice, refried beans, salsa and chips

Stop by my declutter blog and join my new meme on Thursday entitled 5 Things I Can Live Without Thursday.

For more weekly meal plans, visit Organized Junkie each Monday.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Blog Link A Thon at Momdot

I joined a Blog Link A Thon a week or so back at Momdot and part of the agreement for joining was to post the blog thinks on each of our blogs. They will be doing this every month or so. Watch for it and if you didn't get your blog listed in this one, maybe next time. These are some awesome sites, so check them out. Please let them know that you saw them in the Link A Thon.

2. Fairy Blog Mother
3. Crazy Adventures in Parenting
4. Engineer a Debt Free Life
5. Sweet ‘n’ Sassy Girls
6. Good Golly Miss Blondie
7. SavvySuzie
8. For The Love of Baby!
10. Blessings Abound
11. Coupons, Deals and More
12. Hairstyles For Girls
14. A latte in the morning
15. KiddiesCorner Deals
16. 3 Kids and Us Mom Blog
17. The Ohana Mama
18. Coupon Queens of Laurel Run
19. Today’s Journey
21. My Charmed Life
24. New Sue Review
25. Suzanne Calling
26. Just For Me…and You
27. Time Slides By
28. Babes and Kids
29. Declutter a Little Each Day
30. Grocery Savings for Real Families
31. Life Starring Ellie and Eve
32. So Cute Crafts
33. Brea’s Mommy
34. Are Muffins Just Ugly Cupcakes
35. It’s A Beauty Filled Life
36. The crazy suburban mom
37. Donna’s World
38. Momma’s Gone Over the Wall
39. Mommy’s Quiet Time
40. Joyce (Saving My Cents)
41. My Trendy Tykes
42. The Not-So-Blog
43. Confessions From HouseholdSix
44. SiPPyCuPSand FiNGerPriNTS
47. Giftfully Simple
48. Just For Fun
49. Digital Mommy
50. Me And Craig
51. Parenting Princesses
53. Inside My Head
54. Petit
55. My Love Lucy
56. FreckleBox personalized gift
57. Baby Lulu Dress
58. Blog 4 Mom
59. 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
60. Jolly Mom
61. My Life My Journey
62. Maman And Gourmand
64. The POSHpreneur
65. A Blog of Goodies
66. Christy aka The Write Gal
67. LookWhatMomFound
68. Peanut Butter & Smelly’s Dad
69. Lucy
70. Angry Julie Monday
71. The Mogul Mom Blog
72. Angela
73. Deal-ectible Mommies
74. Christy’s Creations
75. Lisa
77. Wannabe Supermom
78. Thre Craft Momma
79. Internet Toddler
80. http://lifeisasandcastle.blogspot/
81. Kristen of La Dolce Vita
82. Cranberry Fries
84. The Mom Buzz
86. Frugal Mommy of 2 Girls
87. Mommy Cracked
88. EclecticBird
89. Mama Mentor
90. Moomettesgram’s Musings
91. Moomette’s Magnificents Reviews
92. Moomettesgram’s Favorite Recipes
93. Diaries of a Domestic Goddess
94. Go Graham Go!
95. NerdFamily Things
96. NerdFamily Blog
97. Making Money Keeping Money
98. NerdFamily Food
99. Flying Giggles & Lollipops
102. A Kindred Spirit’s Thoughts
103. Two Of A Kind, Working On A Full House
104. D-Lo’s Lounge
105. Free Sample Freak
106. What Mommies Need
107. Mom of 2 Boys, Wife of 1
108. icefairy’s Treasure Chest
109. Cheaper Than Therapy
110. Therapeutic Reviews & Giveaways
111. Lily Bean Designs
112. Dirty Diaper Laundry
113. Dance Momma
114. JamericanSpice
115. Mombalance
116. A Pocket Full Of Buttons
117. Ordinary and Awesome
118. Reviews and Giveaways
119. Subjective Beauty
120. Tales From A Shopaholic Mommy
121. Mommiemayhem
122. IE Mommy
124. Amber Woodward
125. Grammy Janet’s Place
126. Outnumbered 3 to 1
127. ShimmerMeBlue
128. Dev’s Favorite Giveaways
129. Joyful Money Saving
130. 1stopmom
131. A Modern Mama
132. PourSomeSugarOnMe
133. Fancast
134. Lollipop Baby
135. Lola & Ben
136. idoby2celebrants
137. Sue Jackson
138. Cackleberry Kids
139. Gifts By The Stars
140. Jemma
141. Handmade Kids
142. Ollie Rose
143. Babasfarmlife
144. Banquet Manager
145. Monkey’s Momma
146. This Mom Can Shop
147. EcoLabel Fundraising
148. Divine Chaos
149. baby kakes ink alphabet onesie
150. tee from recycle me
152. marla mandell bread (5/17)
153. ozone socks 5/15
154. Belly Bumps to Baby Hugs
155. Hip T
156. ThenComes Baby
157. Homemade Gourmet
158. Fresh Pure and Simple
159. MomDot Mom Blogs
160. MomDot Mom Reviews
161. Bloggers Give Charity
162. Organic Baby Resource
163. Potamus Prefers
164. The Army Wife
165. Through Hazel Eyes
166. Frugal Rhode Island Mama
167. Just Jingle
168. And Twins make 5!
169. Frugal Plus
170. Christie
171. What Happened To My House?
172. Miracles on Mama Street
173. Heck Of A Bunch
174. Blog Designs by Susan
175. mommy23monkeys
176. Hanna
177. Got Kids Need Valium
178. Womb At The INNSANE
179. Katie & Kimble Blog
181. The Frugalicious Mommy
182. Penny Pinching Diva
183. Another day. Another thought or two
184. Beauty4Moms
186. Little Miss Julia
187. Mrs Zeee
188. Cheryl
189. Frazzle Dazzle SuperMom
190. Florida Mealtime Savers
191. Inspiration Station
192. Mommy’s Kitchen
193. Saving with MamaNordy
194. Saving SAHM Sanity
195. A Little Piece Of Perfect
196. Nodin’s Nest
197. Lil Miss Eco
198. Laryn Strickland
199. HeatherMama
200. The Gerber Babies Blog
201. WhateverSuccess
202. Women Who Win
204. Happy Healthy Families
205. Sweeps4Bloggers
206. dramaqueensmum
207. The Mom Trap
208. Multitasking Mama
209. Mama Michies Musings
210. Little People Wealth
211. Belly Beyond
212. Kim Kihega
213. Mom Fuse
214. Juanita
215. Adopt a Do
216. On the Refriderator Door
217. Christine
218. Little Diva
219. My Household Junk
220. I’m Here….Really
222. mary
224. Lori Newman
226. Debb
227. Shawn Ann’s World
228. Peke Moe -NZ made baby sleep sacks
229. A Simple Kinda LIfe
230. Sweet Serendipity
231. Bouncing Off The Walls
232. Jane Loedding
233. Msbuildingupdabenjamins
234. Msbuildingupdabenjamins
235. Msbuildingupdabenjamins
236. Musings from Me
237. Veronnica
238. The Adventures of Miss V
239. Mudd Kids
240. Mom Most Traveled family travel
241. Relishing the Dirt
242. Good, True and Beautiful
244. The Last Blog on Earth
245. A Wrestling Addicted Mommy
246. Rae
248. Dore’s Diaries
249. Blog by Donna
250. Lisette
251. Pillaging With Buffie
252. Mom of Faith
254. flutterbyechronicles
255. shelley
256. Life In A House Of Blue
257. kristen
258. Alex the Fey Thriller Series
259. MamaCheaps!
260. Donalacasa
261. A Jewish Journey
263. BethinNC
264. Stuttering Shell
265. Don’t Blink
266. Life is Sweet
267. Lisa
269. m.e (cathie)
270. Run DMT
271. Princess Ratbag
272. Michelle G
274. Moody Mama Says
275. Laurie Ann
276. Cooking During Stolen Moments
277. A Simple Walk
278. Vanessa
279. middleagedmom
280. Ramblings Of A Wannabe Writer
281. Oh My Baby
282. Fordcast Sunny
283. Lisa Miller
285. Bibs & Cribs {very cute stuff}
286. My Lil’ Budget Book
287. Misadventures in Baby Raising
288. My Mommy Said
289. Milk & Honey Mommy
290. Milk and Honey Mommy
291. Amy O’Neal
292. Parenting Children
293. A Girl And Her Life
294. MarieLynn Boutique Blog
295. Born Fabulous Boutique Blog
296. The Pitter Patter Boutique
297. Stephanie Deese
298. Brea’s Baby Boutique Blog
299. - Heather Manning
300. Kids Activities Blog
301. Two Little Whales Cloth Diapers & More
302. 3 boys & a dog
303. Karen ~Georgia Angel
305. Shannon Blogs Here
306. A Virtuous Woman
307. Secrets of a Southern Kitchen
308. Dreamer
309. Lollipop Book Club
310. Mommie Daze Virtual Baby Shower
311. Heck Of A Bunch
312. MomSaves4U
313. Barely Domestic Mama
315. Professional Family Manager
316. Kathleen
317. Coaching The Family
318. Frugal Creativity
319. Easy Being Green
320. Dandelion Bubbles
321. Shelly aka The Attic Girl
322. Foxtoybox-Discovery Toys
324. Colleen - Mommy Always Wins
325. Playground for Parents
326. World of Discovery
329. A Little Bit Nutty
330. Mahayla’s Mommy
331. Mommy Goggles
332. The Shopping Mama
333. If I Could Escape . . .

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

These are My 5 Things

Over at Declutter A Little Each Day, a new meme has been started entitled 5 Things I Can Live Without Thursday.

Here are my 5 things:
  1. Stores that won't accept Internet coupons (this is so aggravating when you get to the counter and find out that your savings aren't what they should be).
  2. Bogus coupons from the Internet (this is probably why those stores don't want to accept the coupons because they have been cheated at some point).
  3. Expired coupons (do they expire too fast or what?) - it seems that the item goes on sale just after the expiration date.
  4. Newspapers that don't include all the coupon ads - ugh!
  5. Leftovers that spoil in the frig because I forgot about them (I really need to get a better system for this - any ideas?).

Head on over and leave your list. See what others can live without.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Weekly Menu Plan for May 17-23

This week is going to be a real bear with high school graduation activities plus t-ball, we don't have a spare night that something isn't going on all week. Just thinking about is making me stressed. We're going to keep things easy, easy, easy this week.

Sunday - eat at friend's for birthday celebration
Monday - Senior/Faculty Party - eating there
Tuesday - Ribs (only because we had taken them out for Sunday pm and then changed plans), potatoes, squash
Wednesday - Hot dogs, baked beans, potato chips
Thursday - Ham sandwiches, pasta salad, green salad from garden
Friday - something in the crock pot because it's graduation (I'll decide later and pick from the freezer)
Saturday - Grilled chicken, cucumber and tomato salad, corn on cob

For more menu ideas, visit Menu Plan Monday. Having a plan saves me money every week. We know what to thaw, what to buy, and what to cook and we even have the flexibility to swap around nights if that's better for us.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

My Best Weekly Deal

Thus far this week my best weekly deal was at my local Piggly Wiggly. I had to go in for some shredded cheese on Wednesday in order to make the enchilada casserole. While there, I noticed their Wednesday "Pig Deals." I got a 40 oz Heinz ketchup for $.99 (picked up two of them) and the Piggly Wiggly brand vegetable oil for $1.48 (picked up two of them as well). I didn't have any coupons for these items, but the prices were over 1/2 off even with no coupons.

Other weekly deals can be seen at Saving Our Cents Saturdays. Check them out.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tried and True Recipes Work for Me

In my quest to save grocery money, I have made a discovery that really works for me - sticking to recipes that are tried and true.

My husband tends to be a picky eater, but my 5 year old will try anything and eats everything except beets (and he did try them). In previous weeks when I tried to plan menus, I would think that we continued to have the same old thing - chicken, hamburger, pork, chicken, hamburger, pork. I have tried to dress up these meats with new recipes. Some of which have been good, but mostly my family really likes what they like. So to save more money and utilize leftovers more efficiently, I have decided to stick mostly to the recipes that we know we like. This Wednesday that is what Works For Me.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Weekly Menu Plan for May 10-16

This week's menu will need to consist of things that we already have because I am still working on the $30/week grocery challenge. Here are our plans:

Sunday (Mother's Day) - eat out - Mama ain't cooking today
Monday - Boston Butt slices, sweet potatoes and onions, fresh collard greens from the garden
Tuesday - Breakfast Hoagies, fruit
Wednesday - Enchilada Casserole (several of the ladies that I work with have ranted and raved about this recipe as well as this site), watermelon slices
Thursday - Grilled hamburgers, potato chips
Friday - Blackened chicken strips, corn on cob, sliced tomatoes, garlic bread
Saturday - Ribs (didn't cook this last week), potato salad, cole slaw

For more menu ideas for this week, check out Organizing Junkie's Menu Plan Monday.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Eat From the Pantry Challenge Update - Week 1

This week's challenge to Eat from the Pantry went pretty good for us, mostly because I stayed out of the stores. I wanted to spend $30 this week and only went over by $8 if you don't count my husband getting us supper at Hungry Howie's last night. I had a bad sinus headache and the meat for the evening wasn't thawed. When he volunteered to "do" supper, I gladly accepted.

We will be having our moms over for supper tonight and I will have to spend another $5 this afternoon. All in all, I am very pleased with how the challenge went for us. It made me more cognizant of what I was spending knowing that I would have to be accountable for it today.

Our Salsa Recipe Saves Us Money BUT...

My husband loves salsa and making it at home has been a big money saver for us! Our recipe is better than any of the jarred stuff we have found in the grocery store, but we eat out (probably more than we should) at our local Mexican restaurant and would love to be able to make salsa like that at home. The only thing we have been able to get out of them is that it is made with canned tomatoes. Here is our recipe (which seems to me to be missing something). Any idea what? Don't get me wrong. This recipe is good but it just seems to lack something and I can't put my finger on it.

1 can of diced tomatoes (plain)
1 can of diced tomatoes with green chiles
Jalapeno pepper rings (from the pickle aisle) - usually 5-8 - depending on how hot he wants it
Fresh cilantro
Garlic powder or minced garlic - cover the top with the powder or a good Tbsp of the minced kind
Lemon pepper seasoning - probably 2 tsps
Salt and pepper to taste

We put all of the ingredients in the blender and blend away. Then salt to taste.

By the way, my husband loves the salsa, but I love the guacamole. Any of you have a wonderful recipe for that?

I have linked this post up the Tempt My Tummy, so head on over for more recipes.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Weekly Menu Plan for May 3 - 9

With only a few dollars left in my $30 a week challenge, I'm going to have to get creative with this week's menu. I do have quite a few things in the freezer, the pantry and on hand. Now it's just a matter of putting together what I have to make meals.

Sunday - Ham salad (made with leftover ham, cream cheese, and mayo) - it's very similar to this recipe except I add a little bit of mayo to make it more spreadable, boiled eggs, green salad

Monday - Hamburger Helper (haven't decided on the flavor yet - it was on sale a few weeks ago at our local grocery), fresh broccoli from my garden, rolls

Tuesday - Swanson Slow Cooker Chicken Cacciatore (didn't have this last week), noodles, salad, garlic bread

Wednesday - Boston butt slices, green beans, consomme brown rice

Thursday - Hot dogs, baked beans, slaw, potato chips

Friday - Grilled leg quarters, mashed potatoes, speckled butter beans, creamed corn, deviled eggs, pecan pound cake (this will be our Mother's Day feast for our moms - I'm being treated to a trip to the beach on Sunday)

Saturday - Ribs (loved the way this recipe looked), baked potatoes, salad or slaw (whichever is left from the week)

Visit Menu Plan Monday at Organized Junkie after 11:00 p.m. Eastern Sunday for more meal plans and ideas.