Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What works for me


Since I am a working mommy I have to be organized in order for our lives to run smoothly and be able to get everything done that I want and needs to get done. I currently work 4 - 10 hour shifts. Sassy is in daycare 3 day a week and my mom watches her one day a week. Daddy works 60-80 hours a week between his two jobs so he is not able to help out as much as he use to. So that leaves a lot of the burden up to me... the cleaning, the cooking, the child-rearing, the laundry, taking care of 2 dogs, etc. My SAHM always tell me they have no clue how I do it... well I don't get a whole lot of sleep. I usually go to bed around 11pm and the days that I work I have to be up at 5am in order to get Sassy and I out the door to school and work by 6:20.

So this is how I do it. I while ago, I found that I was wasting a lot of time by doing things multiple times during the week, like paying bills, emailing, laundry, cleaning, etc. So I have now broken everything down to days.....

Mondays - Clean one level of the house, Exercise, finish laundry, Sassy gets a bath

Tuesdays - Pay bills, email, update blogs, and wash diapers

Wednesdays - Exercise, and Sassy gets a bath

Thursdays - Update Blogs and email

Fridays - Exercise and meal plan

Saturdays - Finish meal plan, grocery shop, start laundry, and Sassy gets bath

Sundays - Bake for the week, laundry, diapers, and update blogs

So the whole house does not get cleaned every week, and if Sassy is dirty on another day she does get a bath but this is what works for me to help me keep my life somewhat sane.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Produce Junction!

Okay so it takes a lot for me to get excited about food shopping and prices, usually because I am always in shock by how much things cost even at the outlet stores. So anyway, remember how I said we had a new produce place in town which was claiming cheap produce. Well I went today and checked it out. Here is what I got....

Bananas - 2.00
Okra - 2.00
Grapes - 2.00
2 heads of Iceberg lettuce - 1.50
For a Grand Total of 7.50!!!

I am in shock... Now this place is unfortunately not right down the road from us, however venturing there every two weeks is definitely do able especially at these prices. The selection was fabulous. The okra was the best looking stuff I have ever seen north of the Mason Dixon. So the bananas are green still, they should come around in a day or two. Daddy is really looking forward to the banana bread.

If you have any great recipes for bananas send them my way. I will be looking for something to do with all of the extras.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Weekly Shopping Trip 2/22/09

We have been member's of BJ's for about two years now and our membership just came up for renewal. Daddy and I talked long and hard about whether or not to spend the $45 to renew. The last couple of months that I have gone that I did not find really good deals. So we decided to not renew our contract and if we can always sign up again in the future if we decide we should go back. Our monthly budget for BJ's was $100 so we will increase our weekly budget from $40 to $65 and starting next month I will start shopping accordingly. However, this month since I had not gone to BJ's we were starting to run low on staples and pantry items, I spent this week stocking up on some great sales that Wegman's had going on. Bonus to going to Wegman's is down the street is Amelia's Grocery Outlet. So head there first and stock up on things and then headed over to Wegman's for the rest. Check out HERE how else everyone spend their grocery dollars.

Amelia's Grocery Outlet

Half gallon of Whole milk - 1.90
Gallon of 1% milk - 2.90
Dried Oregano - 0.88
Quaker Granola Bites - 0.99
Chips - 2.33
2 Banana Nut Cheerios - 5.78
2 Post Honey Bunch of Oats with Almonds - 3.00 (Awesome Price!)
Lucky Charms - 2.50
Total OOP - 19.98


Wegman's

I don't know if you have a Wegman's in your area, but if so you need to go check them out. They are truly one store that their store brand is FABULOUS!! Bonus is they are now doubling coupons! YEA!!

2 Half Gallon of Wegman's Vanilla Soy milk - 5.58
Wegman's Shredded Cheese - 1.99
Fat Free Whipped Cream - 1.69
2 Silk Yogurts - 1.58
Frozen Apple Juice Concentrate - 1.49
Frozen Orange Juice Concentrate - 1.49
Palmolive Eco Dishwasher Detergent - 3.19
Miracle Stain Remover - 7.49
Alaskan Chocolate Syrup - 4.69 (non-milk based!!)
2 Cheez-it's Crackers - 3.00
2 Quaker Granola Bars - 5.00
Wegman's Stuffing - 1.29
Wegman's Blue Cheese - 1.49
Wegman's White Grape Juice - 1.99
4 Wegman's Spaghetti Sauce - 3.96
5# Wegman's Unbleached Flour - 1.69
Wegman's Organic Strawberry Jam - 0.99 (Awesome price usually 2.99, don't buy it at this price.)
Wegman's Grape Jelly - 1.49
2 Wegman's Chicken Noodle Soup - 1.98
Crumbled Corn Flakes - 2.69
22pk of Snack Packs - 5.99
Wegman's 12pk Toilet Paper - 4.99
Bacon -3.49
Micro cloth Sponges - 2.99 (2pk - they are washable!)
2 Pitchers - 6.98 (The dogs chewed up my other pitchers - long story)
1# Strawberries - 3.00
2 bunches of celery - 3.18
0.85# Peanuts - 1.18
Total OOP - 91.79

So there are still a couple of things I need yet for this weeks menu. Not sure how they didn't get on my list but I need Taco shells, Bananas, lettuce, and barley.

There is a new place in the area called the Produce Junction and they are advertising 2 heads of iceberg lettuce for $1.00, 4# of bananas for 1.50. I have decided that I need to go check this out. They are not really close by but I will be near them tomorrow for a doctors appointment and we will have to see if they are going to be worth the trip.

Menu Plan Monday 2/22/09

So my parent's did a fabulous thing for us this weekend, they took Sassy for a night. They picked her up at daycare and Daddy and I picked her up Saturday late afternoon. So you will see that Chicken is back on the menu this week too, this got pushed back from Sunday night last week.

Monday
Chicken on the Rotisserie & Gravy & Filling & Corn

Tuesday
Pasta & Sauce & Bread & Butter

Wednesday
Pack for Sassy's Lunch - Butter & Pasta & Sauce
Dinner - Blueberry Pancakes

Thursday
Pack for Sassy's Lunch - Biscuits
Dinner - Hamburger Barley Stew & Salad & Bread

Friday
Pack for Sassy's Lunch - Soy Yogurt & Chicken Nuggets & Italian Dressing
Dinner - Sausage Peppers & Onions

Saturday
Tacos with Beef, Black Beans, Tomatoes, Cheese, Sour Cream, Shells

Sunday
Bake Cookies & Bread
Homemade Pizza’s Crust, Sauce, Cheese, Soy Cheese

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Menu Plan 2/16/09

So this week, two nights are mine. It's not often that I get to have a couple nights to myself and to spend with friends. On Monday night I have a meeting with my local EcoMom's group and then on Friday night I am having dinner with some girlfriends. So obviously our menu this week reflects the fact that I am not home and Daddy is working at Target a couple of nights this week as well.



Monday
Breakfast for Dinner – Cereal or Pancakes or Eggs

Tuesday
Meatball Sandwiches On Rolls

Wednesday
Pack for Sassy's Lunch - Chicken Nuggets & Crackers
Dinner - Salmon, French Fries, Peas

Thursday
Pack for Sassy's Lunch - Butternut Squash & Roll
Dinner - Pot Roast – reheat meal

Friday
Pack for Sassy's Lunch - Soy Yogurt
Dinner - On Your Own

Saturday
Ribs, Baked Beans & Salad

Sunday
Bake Cookies & Bread
Chicken on the Rotisserie, Gravy, Corn & Mashed Potatoes

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Weekly Shopping Trip 2/16/09

So this week was a little higher than I would have like, but WOW did I save a lot with my coupons and in store sales. We finally had Sassy's 2nd Birthday party today with family and close friends, which was why I was a little over since I had to pick up a couple of last minute items for her party on Saturday and then we have another one on Monday with our playgroup.

Check back later to see how I am going to put all this food to good use.

To check out how others are spending their weekly grocery allowance. HERE

Giant
Bissell Fiber Cleaner - 9.99 (lent our carpet steam cleaner to family and they used all our solution and didn't replace, isn't family great)
Multi Grain Cheerios - 2.99
2 Kix Cereals - 5.04
Lucky Charms - 2.68
Banana Nut Cheerios - 3.29
Triscuits - 3.29
Honey Teddy Grahams - 2.50
McCormick Veggie Dip Mix - 1.05
Celery - 2.49
1.5# Bananas - 1.26
1 Sweet Onion - 1.08
2# Carrots - 3.00
4 Smart Ones Meals - 9.00
2 block cheeses - 3.34
2 bags of shredded cheese - 3.34
Tofutti Sour Cream - 2.25
Tofutti Sliced Cheese - 2.89
Soy Block Cheese - 3.95
2 coffee-mate creamer - 3.98
1 gallon vanilla soy milk - 5.98
1 gallon plain soy milk - 5.70
1 gallon 1% milk - 2.90
Total - 87.43

Coupons
GM Cereals - 1.00
Multi Grain Cereals - 0.55
Doubled - 0.45
Banana Nut Cheerios - 0.75
Doubled - 0.25
Kix Cereal - 0.75
Doubled - 0.25
Kix Cereal - 0.75
Doubled - 0.25
Lucky Charms Cereal - 0.75
Doubled 0.25
Soy Milk - 1.00
Coffee Mate Creamer - 1.00
Store Coupon on Produce - 0.50
Store Coupon on Cheese - 1.00
Store Coupon on Total order - 4.50
Store Coupon on Total order - 5.00
Coupon Total - 19.00

TOTAL OOP - 62.80

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

God provides..... Bread

Shall we talk about how God always provides and supports us in all we do.

Daddy calls me at work a week ago to let me know that our garage fridge is currently 50 degrees. Now let me tell you that we live on the east coast and the day he called it was 12 degrees outside. So this was a little problem. Luckily we had know that the fridge was acting up so I had removed all of the major food items and had just left some bread, ice cream pops and freezer packs in there. Needless to say the ice cream had melted all over the bread. So we lost all but about 3 loaves.

Thankfully, I have had a desire lately to try my hand at making my own bread. I kind of figured, I should try it before I ran completely out of bread in the freezer. So I thankfully made my first batches of homemade bread a couple of days before the freezer went.

I used this recipe from Mommy's Kitchen. I made two batches one plain and one cinnamon. I made the cinnamon with 2/3 cups of sugar, it was a HUGE hit. We will definitely be making more homemade bread at home.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Weekly Shopping Trip

This week, was a pretty typical week for us. We are starting to run out of staples in our house like Toilet paper and cereal. So I have to pick some of this up at the regular store instead of BJ's. We won't have the money for BJ's till the end of the month when we get our tax return back. So till then I will be stocking up at the grocery store with sales and coupons. This might continue as long as I can keep finding good deals at the stores.

Ohh, I heart $1 doubler coupons. This is the time of the month when our local grocery store puts 4 - $1 coupon doublers in the weekly mailer. It means that I get to match up their sales with my best $1 coupons to have them doubled up to $2. Here's how we did.

Giant
Kix Cereal 3.99
Tortillias 2.15
6pk Toilet Paper 3.54
2 Post Cereals 4.00
Taco Shells 1.49 (they ended up being stale and I returned them)
Raspberry Tea 3.29
Coffee 4.59
Lettuce 1.49
Radishs 1.79
1 Onions 1.23
Creamer 2.75
4 Soy Yogurts 4.00
Soy Cheese 3.95
Gallon 1% milk 2.90
Half gallon whole milk 1.60
Giant Spread 2.29 (only one that doesn't contain milk)
Alka seltzer cold 3.85
Tylenol pm 6.19
Contact Solution 6.39
Total 57.94

Coupons
Kix 0.75
double 0.25
Tylenol Pm 1.00
$1 double coupon 1.00
Contact Solution 1.00
$1 double coupon 1.00
Quilted Northern 1.00
$1 double coupon 1.00
Post Cereal Coupon 1.00
$1 double coupon 1.00

Total 48.94

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Meal Plan Monday



As you may have noticed you didn't hear much out of me this week... Well, every single person in this house came down with some verison of a nasty respiratory cold. Sassy ended up with a sinus infection that started pushing out her eyes...ewwww. Daddy still has a cough and is running fevers for the last week (I am sending him to the Dr's tomorrow to be checked out.) Thankful I didn't get hit that bad and was only down for 2 days. But as all of you moms know 2 days is like 2 weeks in other people's world. So I have spent most of my waking time, catching up, scrubbing the house down and washing everything that could be washed just to rid ourselves of these germs. Thankfully here on the East coast it was relatively warm today so I was able to air out the house as well.

Needless to say we didn't have a 2nd birthday party for Sassy this past weekend, so I have rescheduled it for next weekend and we will hope everyone is better by then. This is my hope/goal for a meal plan this week.

Monday
Chicken Fajitas, Peppers & Onions, Cheese, Sour Cream, Tortillas

Tuesday
Pot Roast & Veggies – reheat Meal (yes, another repeat still didn't get eaten last week because of illnesses)

Wednesday
Pack Pancakes for Sassy's School Lunch
For Dinner: BBQ Pork

Thursday
Pack Soy Cheese, Butternut Squash, & Crackers for Sassy's lunch
For Dinner: London Broil, Potatoes & Onions, & Green Beans

Friday
Pack Soy Yogurt & Chicken Nuggets for Sassy's lunch & Grapes and Vday goodies for
For Dinner: Salmon, French Fries & Peas

Saturday
Make Sassy’s Birthday Cake
For Dinner before guest arrive: Super nachos made with refried beans, black beans, chicken, lettuce, tomato and guacamole, sour cream
Birthday Party: Birthday Cake, Cheese & Crackers

Sunday
Make Cupcakes for Playdate Monday
For Dinner: Meatloaf, Baked Potatoes, Mixed Veggies, Salad

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Weekly Shopping Trip

So this week, is both my and Sassy's birthday. I had planned on having homemade pizza's this past Sunday, however, Daddy decided that we had to have Crab legs, since they were on sale and it was my birthday. So this week we are again a little high. But we would have been on target had I not purchased the crab legs for my birthday dinner. Hey everyone deserves a treat every now and then.

So here is how it went....

Superfresh
2 - 6pk of Whole Wheat Rolls - 2.79
2 - 4pk of Hoagie Rolls - 1.89
2.52 lbs Grapes - 5.01
Cake Topper - 1.00 (The bakery was discontinueing some cake toppers they had in stock.)
Cup Cake Topper - 1.99
5 lbs Potatoes - 1.48
Snow Crabs - 18.39
4 - 12pk Coke - 10.00
Total - 42.55

Dollar Tree
Baking Soda - 0.59
Rubbing Alcohol - 1.00
Total - 1.59

Giant
Bakers Chocolate Chips - 2.19 (only ones that do not contain milk)
Campbell's Soup - 3.78
-1.00 off coupon
5lbs Flour - 1.69
2 - half gallons Silk Soy Milk - 5.78
-1.00 off coupon
Half gallon of whole milk - 1.83
Gallon of 1% milk - 3.13
18 count of eggs - 2.13
Total - 18.53

Total - 62.67

Meal Plan Monday


So the meal plan last week didn't go exactly to plan. We ended up not having the Salmon on Thursday nite, because Daddy didn't feel like cooking it. Also, Sunday was my birthday and Daddy decided that we should have something special and crab legs were on sale this weekend. So we will be seeing homemade pizza back on the menu for next Sunday. Also this coming weekend is Sassy's birthday. So I will be making a cake for our family party and cupcakes for her playdate. Here is the recipe that I use for a milk free cake and icing. I have done this with egg substitues as well and it turned out great, as well.

Click here to see whatelse is cooking this week around the country.

Monday : Meatloaf; Baked Potatoes; Mixed Veggies; Salad

Tuesday : Pot Roast & Veggies – reheat Meal

Wednesday : Sassy's Lunch : Mixed Fruit; Jelly Sandwich & Chips; Grapes
Dinner : Soup & Sandwiches

Thursday : Sassy's Lunch : Trail mix; Chicken Nuggets & Sweet Potatoes; Apple Slices
Dinner : Hamburgers; French Fries; Salad

Friday : Sassy's Lunch : Granola Bar: Cheese Sandwich & Mashed Potatoes; Cookies
Dinner: Raviolis’; Bread and Butter

Saturday : Tacos with Beef, Black Beans, Tomatoes, Cheese, Sour Cream, Shells; Birthday Cake

Sunday : Homemade Pizza’s; Homemade crust, sauce, cheese, soy cheese; Salad