Sunday, May 31, 2009

Menu for week of 5/31

Sunday: Soup, leftovers
Hamburgers, baked fries, root beer floats
Monday: Make bagels, muffins to stock freezer for breakfasts
Salads for dinner
Tuesday: Cereal, frozen waffles
Mac N Cheese (for kids), leftover salad (for me)
Soup and sandwiches for dinner
Wednesday: Bagel with egg
String cheese and salads for lunch
Spaghetti and turkey meatballs

After that I'm stumped... I'll be cleaning out the fridge this week and trying to use up what we have on hand. So it looks like leftovers or homemade pizza for Thursday and Friday. We'll be out of the house Saturday.

(Not the healthiest menu for me, but typically I eat veggies or soup where everyone else is having a sandwich.)

Acme shopping and deals for 5/31

I got up early this morning (before my son commenced vomiting, fortunately) and picked up some deals at Acme. Some were major luck... the person checking out in front of me didn't wait for her coupons from the printer, so the cashier gave them to me. I scored a coupon for $2 off the next purchase and a free Edy's Ice Cream! I made a second trip into the store to pick up the ice cream and more Kraft deals, but I've lost that second receipt, so until I find it, here are the highlights from my first check-out:

Bisquick - $3.69 less .60 coupon doubled = $2.49
Kraft MacNCheese - 5 packs were BOGO + each pack had a tear off coupon for a free box of Capri Sun orange juice packs, so I got 10 boxes of Mac N Cheese + 20 Capri Sun packets for $5.29! This also triggered a register coupon for $2 off my next order!
5lb Green Giant Russet potatoes - $1.49
Kellogg's Corn Flakes - $1.99 with a tear off coupon for $1 off fresh fruit, which I was buying anyway, so I used that toward bananas.

Typically I do my grocery shopping at a Wal-Mart Supercenter or Giant, but being early AM and my family in need of groceries this week, I didn't have a ton of time to plan ahead and shop around. Some items seemed extremely expensive to me.
For example, ground turkey was $4.79 for 1.3lb. I bought 1lb at Wal-Mart later today for $1.76.
Hard salami is a staple in our deli drawer as my husband packs a sandwich every day for work, and when it's not on sale at Giant, I pay $5.99 per pound. Today, I paid $4 for half a pound.

Lesson learned: Shop Acme for the deals, and stick to the other stores for other items!

Today's total: $71.14

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Planning shopping for week of 5/31

Some thoughts on planning for the upcoming week:

  • My hub and kids don't need to slim down at all, but I do need to shed some pounds and that's a major struggle in my planning. My son and I watched a few episodes of "Cook Yourself Thin" on Lifetime on-demand this week and a few recipes caught his eye: Stuffed French Toast Sundaes (probably too pricey for this week), Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (thinking about making a big batch of these to take for vacation breakfasts), and Spaghetti and Meatballs (have a stockpile of spaghetti).
  • I made some homemade English Muffins this week and they were a hit! I would also try to make some bagels, again as something we can take along on a mini-vacation we're planning. So I need to restock flour, and possibly yeast.
  • Whole chickens are BOGO at our local Acme this week, so perhaps I can work that in somehow. I have a great recipe for high-temp roasted chicken that involves using potatoes to soak up some of the drippings. Not calorie-friendly, but potatoes are also on sale, so it may be a good week for that.
  • A few things to work around this week: Monday is our wedding anniversary (aww) but we probably won't go out, so maybe I could make something special at home; I do babysitting for a friend, and on those days when there's an extra toddler in the house, dinner prep is tough so need to make-ahead or make it super-easy; my Bible study group meets on Tuesday so I will eat with them, but still need to have something ready for hub and kids.

I'll do my grocery shopping tonight or tomorrow and come back with my receipt and meal plan!

Into the Garden

Well, that November plan didn't work out so well, did it? *wink*

But it's spring, and I'm back! We have so many interesting things going on around here to make our budget in the kitchen that I'm going to have to blog it because I'm just so flippin' excited! So what's new and exciting, you ask?

Our garden!!!

Last year for my birthday, my dear husband bought me a copy of
All New Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholemew. How thoughtful, right? Yeah, I thought so too. But it worked out for the best. All winter, we planned and plotted (teehee) and could hardly way for the snow to melt so we could get started.

In early April, we got started, and my husband built the first box. We mixed up our soil and started planting!

It has certainly been an adventure. Hub does all of the muscle work, and I do all of the planning for what goes in which square and when. Of course, the kids have to be in on the action too, so they dig little holes and drop in the seeds, help water and pull the rare weed (one of the benefits of this method of gardening. We're learning so much! And we've already harvested the first spinach that we added to salads just this afternoon!

Since we got our gardening groove on, we even put in a peach tree!
But let's not get too excited about those little peaches there. We've been told to prune this baby aggressively so that in about 3 years time we'll have a wonderfully productive tree with large fruit. For now, we've picked off the little fruit that started to grow and are letting the energy go into the branches. At some point over the summer (or maybe it's early next year?), we'll trim back any spindly branches and let the larger ones continue to grow. Rinse and repeat... and THEN we should be able to let it fruit the following year. Ah, patience is a virtue. I'm learning a lot about that with this garden :)

It is fun, however, to see everything start sprouting. We have 3 nearly complete squares now, a few pots on the deck and even a box raised on legs for salad greens, herbs and strawberries that is conveniently located right outside our kitchen door! The kids are going to love those berries! I'm guessing there won't be any around for jam-making, but that's ok!

Stay tuned throughout the summer and fall to see what we yield from this labor of love!