Saturday, October 31, 2015

Super Savings - $40.95 shoppig trip

Living where we do, there aren't very many options for grocery shopping without going out of normal driving patterns or making a special trip somewhere.   This week was low for deals, so we did a little shopping and that was about it.

The side effects from my shingles have been really bad this week in some ways and far better than others.  Either way, I spent most of today (Saturday) at home with a foam roller and a heating pad.  So John went to the store for me (love that man!) and spent $40.95 today.

Here's what he purchased:

1 lb Bacon $3.99 (store coupon)
12oz Pork Loin $6.99 (store coupon)
3.99lbs Braeburn Apples @ $0.99 = $3.95
2.94lbs Bananas @ $0.67/lb = $1.97
Two bags fresh Spinach B1G1 = $3.29 (store coupon)
1.08lbs Red Delicious Apples @ $0.77/lb = $83
Two frozen Pizzas @ $2.88 ea = $5.76
1 Gallon Skim Milk $3.79
6 containers Greek Yogurt @ $0.88 = $5.28  (store coupon)

According to our receipt we saved $11.73 or 22%.

The kids went Trick or Treating tonight and brought home a huge collection of candy, granola bars, Halloween-themed jewelry, small bags of pretzels, and a few other random items.   I'll freeze some of the M&M's and other chocolate to use in baking later.

Come back Monday to see what we're eating this week!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Menu and Groceries - Week of October 25, 2015

Goodness - it's that time of the week again, isn't it?

Heave a big sigh of relief with me that we're threw midterms and on the home stretch for fall semester!  I know, I know; it seems like it's way too soon for all of that.  From here on out though, it will go FAST.  And then it's the holidays - and you all know how busy that is!  We only have about 8 more weeks to go until finals and then Christmas.

John and I stopped at one store after a rare dinner out on our second actual date out this month.  We're at an age where the children have events for church or school and parents don't need to attend with them. So we went out for dinner at a little hole-in-the-wall cheap cafĂ© we like and then stopped to buy groceries at the end of a Saturday afternoon and early evening event that the children had.  We were all home and tucked in for the evening by 815pm too!  Love that.

We spent our last $24 that we had for this week and we bought the following (I think John recycled the receipt - I swear it was right on the table not 10 minutes ago!):

56oz roasted peanuts
3 15oz cans black beans
2 cans soup
Approx 3lbs Bartlett Pears
1 whole pineapple
5lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes
5lbs all-purpose flour
5lbs yellow onions

Earlier this week we used about $10 from savings to stock up on toothpaste and laundry detergent since the prices were too good to pass up.  We should be set for about a year with both.  The laundry detergent was such a good deal that I would have been pretty upset if we'd missed it.  We now have 4 bottles of laundry detergent in the laundry room cupboard and 4 tubes of toothpaste.  We were almost out of both.

Missy and Buddy played in a Go Fish! Tournament at church this week and brought home the grand prize - a huge box of individual bags of Goldfish snack crackers!  We're definitely set for snacks for quite a while now!  And I had no idea they were such good Go Fish! players!  We all love card games at our house, but still....
We have loads of apples, carrots, spinach, yogurt and milk left from last week yet so we'll be eating through those too this week.  Here's what we're eating:

Sunday, October 25:
    Breakfast: Toast with Peanut Butter
    Lunch: At Church  - Reformation Party
    Snack: Popcorn
    Dinner: Kielbasa, Fried Potatoes and Onions, Applesauce

Monday, October 26
    Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Fried Potatoes
    Lunch: Soup from the Freezer
    Snack: Goldfish  Crackers
    Dinner: Chicken Flavored Rice, Butternut Squash, Green Beans, Apple-Pear-Mandarin Orange Salad

Tuesday, October 27:
    Breakfast: Oatmeal with Craisins and Almonds
    Lunch: Leftover Rice and Squash with Almonds and Craisins
    Snack: Yogurt
    Dinner: Vegetarian Marinara, Pasta, Pineapple-Mandarin Orange -Pear Salad

Wednesday, October 28:
    Breakfast: Oatmeal Muffins, Scrambled Eggs
    Lunch: Leftover Pasta
    Snack: Goldfish Crackers
   Dinner: At a school event

Thursday, October 29:
    Breakfast: Chai Spiced Oatmeal
    Lunch: Leftover Pasta
    Snack: Yogurt
    Dinner: Turkey Barley Soup in the Crockpot, Cornbread, Apple Slices

Friday, October 30:
    Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs with Spinach and Tomatoes
    Lunch: Leftover Soup
    Snack Goldfish Crackers
    Dinner: Snack-y Dinner before  a Birthday Party (there will be food at the party but we're not sure if it's a whole meal or just snacks)

Saturday, October 31, All Hallows Eve (or Halloween)
   Breakfast: Buttermilk Coffee Cake, Apples
   Lunch: Salads with Chicken, Almonds and Pineapple
   Snack: Popcorn
   Dinner: Homemade Pizza and Breadsticks

On to a new grocery cycle this week and I'm hoping to stock up on some meat - we're quite low after this week.  Down to a bit of fish, a packet or two of lunch meat and leftover cooked turkey and salmon.  That's what happens when the freezer is empty!  I'm hoping to stock up some next week if the sales are good.  Either way we'll build up to the holidays for sure!

What are you eating this week?

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Frugal Things from Last Week

We finally had a hard frost here so we're done with the veggies from outside now.  Whew!  I was starting to think we were getting overrun by tomatoes and crook-neck squash!   I dehydrated all the crook-neck you see here and made another large batch of salsa.  I *think* we're set!
Other frugal things this last week have been:

* I enjoyed a free meal at work during a faculty meeting. YUM!  Our chef at work has us so spoiled!
* A coworker brought in doughnuts one morning to celebrate her birthday. I enjoyed one gourmet doughnut - delicious.

* Went to the apple orchard and bought two carving pumpkins and a peck of apples.  I dehydrated the apples for snacks.  We had a great time - we enjoyed their large playground, a magic show and a hayride as well as the joy of the pumpkin hunt and apple picking.  This late in the season the prices for both pumpkins and apples are far cheaper than we could get in the stores.

* I cleaned out our roll top desk - boy, was that a mess! - and found several Forever stamps and Halloween cards that I had bought last year and promptly lost in the mess.  No need to buy cards or stamps this year!  Hurray!  Several years ago we got in the habit of sending Halloween cards to family with our children's school photos in them.  It works out well!

* Our daughter attended the playoff game for her school's Ladies' Volleyball teams.  She went with a friend who is a member of the 5th/6th grade team and then slept over at her house that night (the games didn't get done until after 10pm).  She had a blast and her friend will be coming over next weekend for Trick-or-Treating and a sleepover at our house.  Free entertainment!
* We tried three new crock pot recipes this week and all three were winners with leftovers for lunches!  Love that!  The meals reheated well and I think they even tasted better the second day.

* I finally got the chest freezer cleaned out so that we can defrost it.  Will do that this week - just in time for the Thanksgiving meat sales that are starting to pop up!

* I have been working on Christmas presents - mostly sewing but a couple of crafts as well.  I'm hoping to post one gift a week starting sometime in November and heading through Christmas.  Most are made with things that we already had on hand but I did have to buy a few pieces of fabric for some of them.  They're turning out great! Which makes me happy.  I will include approximate costs when I post.

* I had my one day off during the semester  - supposedly so we can calculate midterm grades without the pressure of class too - but I did absolutely nothing related to school or work or anything requiring much thought.   I had an acupuncture appointment (I am loving what that is doing for my shingles, by the way) and read a book.  Lovely!  I think my overall mental and physical health appreciated it so much more than trying to push through.  We do get two days for Thanksgiving break here but I really wish we had a whole week off like we do in the spring.  Fall gets to be very long sometimes.

* Made a batch of waffles to put in the freezer for quick breakfasts.

* Made a buttermilk coffee cake that we used for breakfast and snacks for a couple of days.

* I used the grocery money for two weeks to stock up on a few things this past week.  I have $24 left   to purchase things this week.

In addition to our usual frugal things (taking lunches, reusing containers, little shopping, etc.) I think that's it for this week.

What did you do in the frugal realm this week?

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

A Four Song Tidy

Over the last year or two as it's become clear that I'm never going to always be healthy and able to do what I want or need to every single day, I realized that many of our household absolutely have to be delegated.

While I've always known that this needed to happen, especially as the children get older, it has been very hard to put into practice.  Partly because it's just easier to do it myself.  Partly because John comes from a family where Mother did very literally everything, so having me do things was "normal" for him.

One of the things we stated this fall that I am so pleased with is what we call "A Four Song Tidy".  The children have a playlist on my iPod so each evening sometime between dinner and bed we play four songs and everyone tidies up, starting with the main room(s) of the house - kitchen and living room, which are one open, L-shaped area.

Our pattern for these four song tidies is like this:

Put on the music
Everyone gets their bags/backpacks ready for the next day
Everyone lays out their clothes for the next day
Everyone puts any belongings that are left out in the kitchen and living room away
Everyone puts any belongings that are left in the family room away

After that we each tidy something else:
* Library book shelf
* Shoes
* Dressers/Nightstands
* Main bathroom
* Music books/instruments
* Any extra sweeping, mopping or dusting that need to be done

If there's extra time after that, the children may clean up some area of their bedrooms while John and I tackle some small household chore (washing the inside of a window or two, wiping out the inside of the medicine cabinet, dusting the ceiling fans, etc.).

Four songs is typically somewhere between 12 and 18 minutes in length - so roughly 15 minutes.  If we have a particularly busy day, it becomes a two song tidy rather than a four song tidy.  That's fine.  It's just enough time to get the first four things done. 

This means we wake up in the morning with a clean house and everything ready to go.

What do you do to make things easier around your house?

Monday, October 19, 2015

Menu Plan Monday - Week of October 17, 2015

I was sorting through the photos on my computer the other day, and this one just made me laugh!  It's my children's birthday cupcakes from this last May - complete with pop-up aliens!  Everyone loves the pop ups and they can actually play with them rather than having them lay around. 

Our trees here are going from colorful to bare, which is making me just a bit sad. I love the fall colors! It's cool enough that we've had frost a couple of times this week and we finally had to turn on the heat.  We'd hoped to hold off until November but it just gets too cold at night right now.  The heat really doesn't run during the day because it's warm enough but we do need it at night.

We're trying a few new-to-us recipes and reviving a few we haven't done in quite a while.  We were starting to feel like we were in a rut and wanted something new without breaking the bank.

Here's what we're eating today:

Sunday, October 18:
     Breakfast:  Cinnamon Rolls, Smoothies
     Lunch:  Scrambled Eggs, Cinnamon Biscuit Twists, Sliced Apples
     Snack: Popcorn
     Dinner: Crockpot Turkey Wild Rice Soup in a Homemade Bread Bowl, Apple-Banana Salad

Monday, October 19:
    Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Toast
    Lunch: Leftover Soup
    Snack: Apples
    Dinner: Waffles with Applesauce, Sausage

Tuesday, October 20:
    Breakfast: Oatmeal with Walnuts and Cinnamon
    Lunch: Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches, Apples, GoGurt, Cookie
    Snack: Yogurt
    Dinner: Crockpot Beef Stroganoff, Noodles, Apple-Banana Salad

Wednesday, October 21:
    Breakfast: Oatmeal Muffins, Bananas
    Lunch: Leftover Stroganoff and Noodles
    Snack: Crackers and Peanut Butter
    Dinner: Baked Butternut Squash, Roasted Potatoes, Spinach Salad, Sliced Apples

Thursday, October 22:
    Breakfast: Chai Spiced Oatmeal
    Lunch: Leftover Squash and Potatoes
    Snack: Yogurt
    Dinner: Crockpot Shrimp and Sausage Jambalaya, Rice, Sliced Apples

Friday, October 23:
    Breakfast: Waffles with Bananas and Walnuts
    Lunch: Leftover Jambalaya
    Snack: Sliced Apples
    Dinner: Homemade Pizza and Breadsticks

Saturday, October 24:
    Breakfast: Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake
    Lunch: Soup from the Freezer and Spinach Salad
    Snack: Popcorn
    Dinner: At a church event

What are you eating this week?

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Super Savings Saturday - A $56-something shop this week

No photo again today - John put everything away before I could take a photo since I was in the middle of cleaning all the odds and ends out of the fridge and inventorying the freezer.    And now I can't find my receipt!   Yep, I guess it's one of those days around here.

I went to one store after spending about 1 1/2 hours at the dance supply store trying to find split-soled tap-shoes for my very large-footed tap-dancing 10-year-old boy.  We managed to find a pair but they have the wrong taps on them so we'll have to replace those.  At least we've got them!  I guess men's tap shoes don't have a split sole as a general rule. Who knew?  (And, yes, I had to ask what a split sole was, too! I didn't dance when I was younger and had no idea that there were a variety of types of tap shoes.)
Here's what we bought:

* 1 Gallon Skim Milk $2.50
* 1 Dozen Eggs $3-something
* 1 package Go-Gurt $2
* 1 Loaf White Bread $1.99
* 6 15oz cans corn @ $0.69ea
* 3 cans Evaporated Milk (I can't remember how much these were!)
* 4 15oz cans black beans @ $0.89ea
* Approx. 3lbs McIntosh Apples @ $0.99/lb
* 10oz Spinach $4.99
* 2 bunches bananas @ $0.69/lb
* 2lbs Carrots $0.99
* 1 bunch celery $1.29
* 10oz white mushrooms $1.79
* 2 packages rope sausage @ 2/$5

I spent $56 and change. 

I took the extra money over our $40 weekly budget from next week's budget - we run on a two-week cycle in our house here - so next week I'll have approximately $23 to spend. 

The evaporated milk, corn and sausage were on sale this week and we were completely out of the canned corn and black beans.  John specifically asked for spinach this week so I bought the largest package I could find.   I was hoping that other fruit would be on sale - other than just apples this week - but I didn't find anything else that I was willing to pay for.  The carrots and the celery will last us quite a while and, though the mushrooms were not on sale, we'll use all of them in the next week or so.   It feels good to have some of the holes in a pantry filled in again! 

Come back Monday to see what we're eating!
How did you do with your shopping this week?

Friday, October 16, 2015

Frugal Friday - Garage Sale, Christmas Presents and other happenings

I finally have a Frugal Friday post on a Friday!  YAY!   I think I'm finally getting back on track here (or something!).

We're still busy here - I think this fall is just going to be a busy one.  That's okay.  We've been getting into a routine and making sure things get done with a few new additions to our evening routine and I'm loving that!   I'm hoping to write about that one these weeks.

Anyway, here's what we've done the last week as far as "frugal" things go (I apologize for any overlap with last week - these days all seem to run together for m!).

* We had our garage sale and made $96. 

*  I used some of that $96 to order Christmas presents.  We now have at least one present for everyone we need a present for.  Now, I just need to get myself in gear and finish the homemade ones!
* I started the Christmas gift I'm making for my mother.  I'll finish it closer to Christmas since part of it can be easily damaged.

* I finished two stitching projects that will be gifts for family members.

* We donated the leftovers from our Garage Sale and will receive a tax credit.

* The children attended a school's out program at a local community center for two days this week while MEA Weekend had school out.  It was far less expensive than I expected and less expensive than the other options and a good option for us.  They got to swim, play games, and see a movie while they were there.

* I taught an extra Jazzercise class this last week and made some extra money doing that.

* We had signed out children up for Parent's Night Out through the local school district.  We get 3 hours of childcare plus dinner for $12 per child.  We used a gift card dinner after hike at a local park for a frugal 3 hour date!  Our children aren't quite old enough to stay home alone yet.

* We picked all the green tomatoes and laid them out ripen inside the house.  I then pulled out the dead cucumber, crookneck squash, pumpkin and watermelon plants from our yard as well as the now-empty tomato plants.  I also transplanted Shasta daisies that needed to be split.   

* I mended 4 items and set aside several that need more complicated mending to do at a single time later. 

* I ripped apart seams on several clothing items so I can repurpose the fabric.

*  Used a coupon to order shoes online for my son - he's growing fast and his current shoes almost don't fit.  He has double-wide feet so finding shoes is difficult.  I ordered two pairs of shoes on clearance for myself - since I only had tennis shoes currently to wear - with the same order, so we received free shipping.

*  My husband started swimming again with a "season pass" at the local school pool.  It ends up costing about $1.50 per swim with the pass, cheaper than the $3-$5 per swim at the door (depending on the day of the week).   He was a competition swimming in high school and college and has missed it so much!

We also cooked most of our meals at home and brown-bagged others, washed out and reused zipper-top baggies, and all of our daily "frugal" things.

What did you do this week?

Monday, October 12, 2015

Menu Plan Monday - Week of October 11, 2015

Kranskaka - I'm dreaming of Christmas baking right now! 

I probably shouldn't be thinking about Christmas baking when the weather is so lovely outside - very fall, beautiful color and just cold enough for soup and stew (we'll ignore the 40mph wind we had today - yikes).   Our church is starting the baking for the holiday fair which will happen in about a month - Krumkaka, Lefse and a few other Scandinavian goodies are in the works.  It got me thinking about what to make this year.  I'm thinking Kranskaka is definitely on the menu!  We haven't made one for a few years.

Fall foods abound here this week.   Here's what we're eating.

Sunday, October 11:
   Breakfast: Toast with Peanut Butter
   Lunch: PB&J, Potato Chips, and Cut Veggies (we were gifted a bag of chips leftover from a youth event)
   Snack: Apples
   Dinner: Soup from the Freezer, Bread, Sliced Vegetables

Monday, October 12:
     Breakfast: Peanut Butter Banana Smoothies
     Lunch: Leftover Soup
     Snack: Cereal
     Dinner: Pork Loin, Roasted Potatoes, Lemon Kohlrabi, Apple-Raspberry-Pear Salad

Tuesday, October 13:
    Breakfast:  Oatmeal with Walnuts and Apples
    Lunch: Leftover Pork with Applesauce and Sliced Cucumbers
    Snack: Yogurt
    Dinner: Creamy Turkey and Wild Rice Soup (in the crockpot), Bread, Apple-Raspberry-Grape Salad

Wednesday, October 14:
     Breakfast:  Scrambled Eggs and Toast
     Lunch: Leftover Soup
     Snack: Crackers with Peanut Butter
     Dinner:  Stuffed Acorn Squash, Apple-Grape-Pear Salad

Thursday, October 15:
    Breakfast: Chai Spiced Oatmeal
    Lunch: Apples with Almond Butter, Cut Veggies, Yogurt
    Snack: Yogurt
    Dinner: Applesauce Chicken, Rice, Grape-Apple-Banana Salad

Friday, October 16:
    Breakfast: Waffles from the Freezer, Bananas
    Lunch: Leftover Chicken and Rice or Soup
    Snack: Yogurt
    Dinner: Date night out with a gift card, Children will eat at a church event

Saturday, October 17:
   Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Toast
   Lunch: Autumn Spiced Pancakes, Sausage, Applesauce
   Snack: Popcorn
   Dinner: Homemade Pizza and Breadsticks
   Family Night Dessert:  Apple Crisp, Hot Cocoa

What are you eating this week?

Frugal Friday - On a Monday!

What a week!
Lots of shingles pain, grading coming out my ears, parent-teacher conferences, running all over to find tap shoes for my now man-size-footed son, and then we had our garage sale this weekend too.  I'm really am ready for a nap this afternoon.

It seems like I didn't do much frugal this week, but here's what I did:

* Bought 1 yard of lace on sale to my make daughter a crown for her Halloween costume.  If it turns out well, I'll make sure I post about it.

* Used up leftovers to make dinner and/or lunch a couple of times this week.

* Enjoyed a lunch brought in by a co-worker this week.  Another co-worker brought in doughnuts for a treat one afternoon.

* Returned an overdue library book before the fine kicked in. YAY!

* My children went in for well-child checkups and we discovered that the pain in my daughter's foot that we thought was a pulled tendon is actually a bone spur.  The doctor gave us several ways to deal with it now so it doesn't become debilitating.  We only needed to buy a pair of over the counter insoles at this point!

* Taught an extra Jazzercise class this week.  Will get paid for that.

* My children had a teacher in-service on Friday and they spent the day at a friend's house playing.  No sitter to pay! Yay!

* Picked several more tomatoes this week - we're getting down to the end of these now.  The squash is officially done (whew!).  I also picked another cucumber.  I think those are getting close to the end too. 

* Made $96 with the garage sale.  I was really hoping for more but we had very little interest.  Everything else will be donated and we will take the tax deduction.

What did you do that was frugal this last week?

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Super Savings - $40.01 Grocery Shop

Sorry folks, no photo this week - I wasn't that on top of things!

My son and I ran to one store and bought the following with our $40 grocery budget - I definitely had the pennies in my purse so the one cent over wasn't going to break us!   We had a yard sale on Saturday, so the $10 in frozen pizza was for dinner that night since we were all wiped and nobody wanted to cook.   Everything else will last through the week. 

We had plenty of apples and pears and a whole package of grapes from last week that will be good through most of this week too and we have sausage, chicken and pork in the freezer as well as a couple of venison and bear steaks (Thanks cousin Bo!) so we're good to go for meat for a while. 

Here's what we bought:

42oz Vegetable Oil $2.49 (store coupon)
64oz Apple Juice $0.99 (sale)
6 10oz cans diced tomatoes @ 3/$2 = $4
3 10oz cans black beans @ 3/$2 = $2
5lb Russet Potatoes $2.49
3.37 lbs Yellow Bananas @$0.67/lb = $2.26
10oz Fresh Spinach $2
8oz Fresh Romaine Lettuce $2
2 Dry Pints Red Raspberries @ 2/$5 = $5
2 Frozen Pizzas @ 2/$10 = $10 (sale)
Smart Balance Spread $2.99
GG Plain Yogurt 32oz $3.79

Total: $40.01

Come back Monday to see what we're eating!  I'm going to enjoy the beautiful weather we've been having - it's mid-October and I'm not foolish enough to think that we'll have many more days of this.  We do live in Minnesota, after all! 

Monday, October 5, 2015

Groceries, Our Menu and Shingles (not the kind on the roof!)

It's been a really long couple of weeks.  Our freezer is almost cleaned out for defrosting so we've been eating a LOT of soup - so much that we're getting tired of it, in fact (which I never thought would happen).  A good problem to have, I guess.

I also have postherpetic neuralgia, a complication of shingles, and I've had it for about 3 years now.  This last week I broke out in full blown shingles again (second time in three years) and this time in new places on my torso.  Needless to say, I've been miserable and had to miss several events because I just couldn't stand to be out and about.  I'm only 40 so this is discouraging to say the least.   Fortunately, I have some new strategies for managing going forward but it means we're going to have to make some big and hard changes around here.  Can you pray for us please?  It's going to be another emotional year here, I'm afraid.

On to better things....

The weather has been perfect after weeks of rain and we've finally settled into a good routine for fall.  I have my teaching assignments for spring semester and they'll fit perfectly with our current schedule and give me some time to physically recover from everything this fall.  I'm so grateful!
John ran to the store on Saturday and spent $42.01 on the following:

Soda Crackers 4 boxes @ $1 ea = $4
1 loaf wheat bread $1.99
Frozen cooked Shrimp 2lbs $5.99  (store coupon)
Pork Loin Short Ribs 3.64lbs @ $1.99/lb = $7.24 (store sale)
2lbs Mixed Salad Greens $3.99 (store sale)
4.73lbs + 5.46lbs Local Apples @ $0.99/lb = $10.09
2.02lbs yellow bananas @ $0.67/lb = $1.35
2.19lbs Red Seedless Grapes @ $1.49/lb = $3.26
2.22lbs Green Seedless Grapes @ $1.49/lb = $3.31
1 loaf French Bread $0.79

Total Spent $42.01
Total Saved (according to store receipt) $7.99 (16%)
(Note: In Minnesota we don't have tax on most food.)

We also received 6 green peppers, a butternut squash and 2 dozen yellow pears from our CSA this week.    I picked several tomatoes, 3 butternut squash and 3 acorn squash from our yard this week too.

So, here's what we're eating this week:

Sunday, October 4, 2015:
    Breakfast: Toast with Peanut Butter
    Lunch: Fried Potatoes, Tossed Salad with Apples and Walnuts
    Snack: Popcorn
    Dinner: Baked White Fish, Roasted Butternut Squash, Apple-Grape-Pear Salad

Monday, October 5, 2015:
     Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Toast, and Sliced Apples
     Lunch: Leftover Fish and Squash
     Snack: Apple or Pear
     Dinner: Chili in Homemade Bread Bowl, Applesauce

Tuesday, October 6, 2015:
     Breakfast: Oatmeal with Walnuts and Craisins
    Lunch: Leftover Chili and Soda Crackers
     Snack: Yogurt
     Dinner: Baked Potatoes topped with Leftover Chili and Cheddar Cheese, Grapes

Wednesday, October 7, 2015:
    Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Toast, and Bananas
    Lunch: PB&J, Grapes, Yogurt
    Snack: Apple or Pear
    Dinner: Short Ribs, Zucchini-Potato Skillet, Apple-Grape-Pear Salad

Thursday, October 8, 2015:
     Breakfast: Chai Spiced Oatmeal with Walnuts
     Lunch: Leftover Ribs and Zucchini-Potato Skillet
     Snack: Yogurt
     Dinner: Applesauce Chicken, Rice, Grapes

Friday, October 9, 2015:
     Breakfast; Waffles from the Freezer, Bananas
     Lunch: Leftover Chicken and Rice
     Snack: Apple or Pear
     Dinner: Taco Soup, Tortilla Chips, Sliced Apples and Grapes

Saturday, October 10, 2015:
    Breakfast: Oatmeal Muffins, Grapes
    Lunch: Salad with Tuna
    Snack: Popcorn
    Dinner: Homemade Pizza and Breadsticks
    At home Date-Night Dessert: Apple Crisp

What are you eating this week?

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Frugal, er, Sunday

I'm not sure what we'd do without Lego at our house - these provide hours of entertainment to all four of us and I'm so grateful that we have so much fun with something so simple!

It's been a couple of weeks since I posted a Frugal Friday post - I'm writing more on that tomorrow - but for now for the frugal things in the last couple of weeks.

*  Picked three butternut squash and three acorn squash plus a bunch of tomatoes from our yard this week.   I set the green tomatoes out to ripen indoors.  We have had frost a couple of nights and I don't want to loose that many tomatoes!

* Received a bonus box from our CSA containing green peppers, a butternut squash and pears.  YAY!

* Enjoyed a free lunch at work one day - delicious food!  We're so spoiled - the chef at work is fantastic.    A co-worker brought in a loaf of homemade zucchini bread for snacks a couple of days this week as well.

* The children have an hour a week at church for their classes this year at a time when John and I don't have anything else going on.  That gives John and I an hour each week where we have child-free time to have a short date at home.  We've enjoyed having the time to build an even stronger relationship!  We've gone for walks and spent some time just sitting at home with hot chocolate talking and dreaming and problem solving.
* Picked zinnias, snap dragons and Shasta daisies from our yard for our kitchen table and to give to our secretary at work.

* Other than groceries and gas, we have bought only a bottle of Advil and 3 bottles of stain stick, which gave us a $5 Target gift card back.  Having a 10-year-old boy, I consider stain stick a necessity!  And three bottles will last us a while. 

* Made turkey soup using a turkey carcass from the freezer. 

* Made vegetable stock which I then froze using leftover vegetables and then the celery leaves I had in the freezer. 

* Decorated for fall using decorations we already had and that my daughter made from our craft supplies.  She's so creative!  I love it. 

* Started working on the sewn Christmas gifts that I'm making this year.  I'm hoping to do a separate post on these later this fall. 

* Started deadheading the plants in the yard to get them ready for fall. 

* John and the children attended a friend's wedding and brought home chocolates and snack mix - both of which were the favors for the wedding.  They had a terrific time! 

* We have been doing a LOT of cleaning out in preparation for a garage sale later this month.  We're hoping to make enough money to pay off a couple of medical bills.  With the sheer volume of "stuff" we have, I'm hoping that will be the case.  And it means a cleaner and easier to care for house for us. Win-win all the way around!

What frugal things have you done the last few weeks?