Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Meal Plan

So my meal planning is a bit off this week.  We were on vacation last week and got to celebrate an amazing couples wedding!  So this week I started off with today the 29th!  I am working on cleaning out our freezer for our 1/2 beef that will be here soon and also because in mid June I am going to be making 20 freezer meals at a freezer cooking party for the freezer.  Why 20? That way when baby gets here and in the midst of packing up our house I won't get the "what's for supper?" question.  Hoping this will be easy enough the hubs can just pull something out the night before and grill it up the next day for us.  I'm also hoping that will eliminate most of our grocery store trips while we are trying to pack/move. I digress! Sorry!

Tuesday: Stir Fry (chicken, broccoli, cauliflower, and rice)

Lunch: Calzones(freezer)
Supper: Left overs (we have a tball game tonight, so supper will be late anyway)

Lunch: Sandwiches/watermelon
Supper: Tacos with Chips and homemade salsa/guac

Lunch: Left Overs
Supper: Stuffed Shells with Choice of sauce.(freezer)  (Girls prefer marinara while boys prefer Alfredo!)

Lunch: Hot Dogs at the library
Supper: Left Overs

Lunch: Clean out the fridge
Supper: Chefs choice.

Need a new challenge!

Alright friends.  I am looking for some new challenges!  I personally like the cooking type challenges better then say the budget type ones.  I am not comfortable posting specifics on our budget and that seems to be the main challenge working it's way through the blog-o-sphere lately.  Does anyone have a challenge for me?!?!  I am willing to take up ANY idea's!

I do have a few things I want to try too!  I am going to be making this English Muffin Bread recipe soon.  I had planned on making it today after I made the dough for these Ham/Cheese Calzones.  However, I realized I'm out of yeast.  Seriously, for those of you who know me, have to know that this is not only a huge inconvenience, but a VERY rare one as well!  So, the English muffin bread will be saved for another day.

I have been scouring pinterest looking for easy grilling ideas so if anyone has any recipes for grilling let me know! I would love to try them.  Now I'm off to roll dough!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Last Update on the 28 day challenge

While I'm happy today is officially the last day of the no eating out challenge, I am bummed to say that I didn't make it the full 28 days not eating out.  I am quite proud of ourselves though.  The first 14 days were flawless thanks to my major planning skills.  The last 2 weeks I was trying to hard to cut the grocery budget and get by with what we had.  That my friends is apparently my downfall.  While I'm a semi lazy person when it comes to cooking not having stuff on hand for quick sandwiches and suppers was my downfall.  Trying to save on lunch meat and jelly was my killer. 

I am proud to say we only spent about $50 eating out when our normal eating out is between 150-250.  I know.  Most of you can now pick up your jaws from the ground.  :)  Eating out is a big thing for us and to be able to spend $50 was HUGE!  I am proud to say that we are beginning to enjoy eating at home MUCH more then before.  We actually prefer it now.  When we do eat out instead of always going to the sit down restaurant that costs $25 a pop we used coupons and choose the cheaper places.  Subway could feed our family for $10 thanks to the BOGO Cardinal card and McDonald's had the 20 piece nugget for 4.99 so really between those two good deals it helped save. 

So the big question.  Am I doing it again?!  I do plan on having 1 day a week as an eating out lunch or supper.  However we have a few times this month we will not be able to cook from our kitchen.  About 5 days actually.  I plan to pack lots of PB&J's, Go-gurt(it's on sales this week), and homemade trail-mixes to help us not have to eat out at every one of the meals we would normally need.  A 5 day road trip is no joke with 2 kids.  Talk about a TON of money eating out!  I'm hoping to only eat out about 4/5 times.  2 suppers and 2 lunches for sure.  I am also going to pack some breakfast options in case our hotel doesn't have a continental breakfast. 

Well, there ya go.  28 days complete with only a few mishaps.  I'm happy with our progress this month.  Once things settle back down over here we will be back to the no eating out thing.  I think having the teacher home for the summer will help take some of the stress off of me having to cook everything.  LOTS of grilling will be going on over here.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

lazy week...updates 17-20

Sitting here trying to give myself reasons NOT to write.  To forget I even mentioned a challenge and move on.  But, I cannot tell a lie.  ;)  This week sucked. We did eat out twice.  Both times it was my fault and the result of pure laziness.  Once was for lunch on the kids' last day of preschool and the other time was also for lunch after J's Kindergarten round up.  Not proud, but what's done is done.  On to a new week. 

We also strayed greatly from our meal plan.  I don't think I made but 1 thing on the plan.  I guess that's why they call it "a plan."  At least this week the grocery store will be quick and very little money spent.  I made up our meal plan today for next week, which is basically the same as last week.  I won't post it because how boring, but I did add in 1 fun thing.  I'm going to make ham and cheese pockets.  I was inspired by this post here.  Since I have all the ingredients on hand and wanted something to help simplify lunches this is what I'm doing. 

We are good on waffles since the cereal seemed to be all the kids wanted this week.  Guess the "healthy" cereal needs to make a come back so they eat the waffles instead! 

Lunch: Egg salad sands
Supper: honestly not sure, something from the freezer OR ham/cheese pockets if I get to those this afternoon!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Update days 13-16

What a weekend.  It has been cah-ray-zee over here.  We did fairly well staying on plan.  We had 1 mishap which honestly I didn't even realize! How sad is that.  The hubs and I got a babysitter and headed out of town to celebrate.  No, I'm not telling you what ;) We just wanted to get away for the night.  On our way to the casino we stopped and grabbed a 20 piece nugget to share for 4.99.   Half way there he said, "do you realize we just ate out."  All I could do was look at him with the most bummed out look.  It did NOT even cross my mind.  We had planned on eating at the casino, but instead stopped on the way out of town since it was cheaper.  I didn't even factor that in when we went.  I can say it was an honest mistake.  However at the same time it still put a bump in our road on Day 14.  (Our half way mark I might add)

Other then that we have done no eating out!  I worked out a budget/meal plan for the week with mostly freezer meals so our grocery budget came in well under $50!  I was pretty excited, but have yet to tell the hubs, because I'm hoping to make the rest of our weekly budget last through next week.  That way we will have 1 full weeks worth of groceries saved!  That buys 3 cases of diapers!! WOOT WOOT!

So freezer eating for us! I'm only giving you the 1 meal a day b/c we all know we eat for lunch the left overs from the night before.  We also still have 1 bag of waffles left in the freezer to last the week.

Monday: Left overs from the weekend.

Tuesday: White lasagna (freezer)

Wednesday: Chimichanga's/rice(freezer plus had rice from last week)

Thursday: Picnic for J's graduation from preschool (we are taking dessert)

Friday: Pizza(dough in freezer)

Saturday: Beef Stroganoff (Freezer) (this meal keeps getting pushed back! lol)

I'm also planning on making some yummy egg rolls I found on pinterest.  They aren't normal egg rolls, but they look fab!  See..

Yes, yes I am.

Our budget this week actually was mostly the ingredients for this since I didn't have hardly any of it on hand.  I also got 5 boxes of cereal for 1.49!  No coupons!  So I had to snap those up for a treat this week.  Also, I had one pregnancy grab.  GARDETTOS!  Since writing out a list I generally don't sway from it.  Maybe 1/5 times do I go off and grab a few extras.  However, when I walking through the candy isle getting my peanut-butter mm's I saw them and HAD to have them!  Enough blabbing today. Whats your meal plan????

Thursday, May 3, 2012

update 11 and 12

Wow! I can't believe I forgot to update yesterday.  Oops. Sorry.  Well, yesterday went fine even with the hubs gone all day.  We had left overs and spaghetti all day.  The kids didn't care and we gobbled up the rest of the cobbler we made on Sunday.

Today.. Well, that's another story. :(  The kids had sandwiches for lunch and while I wasn't hungry I should have eaten.  After dropping J off at preschool we went to run errands. Before I knew it, I had a doc appointment in less then 20 minutes and STILL hadn't eaten lunch. So I did stop and grab a taco on my way.  Low blood sugar in a pregnant mama who is sweating from cleaning out cars is NOT a good combo.  Anyway, I feel okay with it since I only spend 1.07!  Plus, I used the change that I found while cleaning the car out.  So I don't feel guilty at all.  When I told the hubs he said "wow that's bad."  I think he tried to make me feel guilty, but I didn't let him.  hehe

Anyway those are our updates on that.  I'm thinking our grocery budget for next week will be very slim since we have eaten a combo of weird things NOT on my menu plan.  For instance, the poor chimi's are getting moved AGAIN! Plus, tonight we gotten invited out to eat (their treat) so we may do that.  We have decided that as long as we aren't paying we are fine.  I realize that makes us sound cheap or moochy, but we have lots of family in the area who generally take us out, or find coupons for a free this or a free that.  Maybe that's wrong, but that is the great thing about having our own challenge.

Speaking of challenges. Have any of you checked out Moneysavingmom.com lately? She is have a 4 week freezer cooking challenge.  While I was very tempted to follow along and cook 1 or 2 things a day in May for the freezer I decided not to.  I know shocker right!  I am in June hosting a freezer cooking show where I will be making 10-20 meals for when the baby comes AND I have a 1/2 of beef coming in May as well, so figured I better save the freezer space!  That also means we will be eating/cleaning out our freezer in the next 3 weeks, so I don't want to refill it again until the other meals are made and the beef is nestled safely in so I know how much room we have.  Our deep freeze isn't that big so I hate to over fill it.

We did have an extra small freezer that we ended up giving away because we didn't think we would need it.  Well, so much for that now we are regretting getting rid of the darn thing.  Who knew I would become such a freezer cooking nut. LOL Another reason is we usually only get a 1/4 of a beef at once, so our freezer will be extra full with double what we usually get.  Even though that should last us a good year or so.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Day 10 Update

WOW! Our meal plan this week has pretty much gone out the window!!! :(  My kids may not have eating the greatest things, but we have NOT eaten out either!  I have been struck by the 3rd trimester "morning sickness" so it has not been easy to cook.  Last night instead of pot pie casserole dad came to the rescue with Chicken/Ham sandwiches.  

Today, we were on schedule, however the pot pie that got moved to tonight is again not happening. Thank goodness for left over spaghetti from lunch!  However, I'm also fairly certain that when may baskets get delivered to grandma/pa in a little bit they may get some supper made for them.  I have a pot luck/bible study tonight so I am already taken care of, so I figure the hubs will con his mom into cooking for them. That is what usually happens. :) 

So TOMORROW we WILL have pot pie.  Probably for lunch, but we will make it.  The chicken can't last much longer thawed in the fridge and I HATE wasting chicken! So check in tomorrow to see how the cooking goes.

Today my son asked me if we could go out to eat.  I said no, not yet.  He then replied with a "how many more days until I get to eat at Angela's?"  For me this was amazing yet disturbing all the same.  I worked at Angela's on and off for about 7 years so we always eat there when we eat out to support them, so it was cute for him to say it, yet disturbing that he knows we eat there too much and knows it by name.