Friday, October 31, 2008

Frugal Crochet

I am neither crafty nor creative. My mom selfishly did not pass down those sort of genetics down the ole family tree (to me anyway). The bro' stole them all and is a talented musician.

Anyway, there are a very few creative diversions that I would even care to do, much less have any sort of creative energy to do them. But now that I am a stay-at-home-mom, I have been feeling the itch to be creative in some way besides cooking.

Enter my creative (and patient) friend Marie. Last week she re-taught me to crochet! This is my first attmept at crocheting with the larger hook and at anything other than a scarf, so don't laugh too hard:)

The frugal part of all this? I have read you can use old t-shirts to do this! What a great way to repurpose something that has been hanging around using up your closet space. This rug was made from old fabric that Marie's relative cut into long strips and sewed together.

The finished product!

Here are some links to tutorials and pics and such if you are interested in learning more!

~Crazy Mom Quilts
~Dances with Wools

There are lots more, those are just some to get you looking!

Here is M, enjoying the fruits of my labors. Apparently it is a great place to snuggle:)
We are still in N. Carolina, so the beautiful blue carpet isn't ours, sadly:)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tuesday's Dinner: Tuna Noodle Casserole

Tuna Noodle Casserole has got to be a classic comfort food. Creamy, noodley goodness in a hot pan, no side dish needed. While away from home I wanted meals that would be simple to prepare (requiring few ingredients), yet were tasty and had enough redeeming nutrional value to keep us all well fed for the week.

This meal was great for another reason. I was able to bring several of the ingredients from home (tuna and whole grain noodles), so 2 less things to buy. Not only that but instead of buying an entire bag of overpriced potato chips for the topping, improvisation led me to substitute some cheesy crackers we brought with us for the topping. Not bad!

All the ingredients, assembled and ready to go:

Just a note here on the above ingredients: at home I would typically substitute homemade white sauce, as I talked about here.
The original recipe is here, but I added a half a bag of frozen peas, used half mozarella half sharp cheddar and lots of onion as well as salt/pepper to taste. Oh and 1 cup milk rather than the condensed milk called for.

All the ingredients in the greased casserole dish, sans topping:

With the cracker topping:

This fresh-out-of-the-oven picture didn't turn out very well, but you get the idea. For lunch the next day (and there were plenty of leftovers!) we added more milk, cheese and peas to freshen it up a bit and it was really good.

Blogher and Beans & Rice!

You'll probably notice something new on my sidebar...I now am a part of the blogher ad network! I am so excited to be accepted to join!

If you've never heard of blogher, find out more here. I am excited because I have been interested in finding a way to cover the cost of our internet through blogging, but wanted family-friendly advertising(or none at all)and this is it!

I probably will only make a few dollars (or maybe cents!) a month, especially to start, and the way I will do that is when people click on the ads (but don't feel pressured to do so). The ads I've seen on other blogher blogs have been great, so I am thinking they will be things my family, friends and regular readers will be interested in anyway.

Let me know what you think!

Safeway NW Deals for the week of Oct. 29th, 2008

Campbells Condensed Soups, 10.5 to 11-oz. $1.00
Use $0.40/3 coupon from 10-05 CA
Final Price $0.80

Birds Eye Steamfresh Meals for 2 $4.99
Use $1.50/1 from 10-12 S
Final Price $3.49

Progresso Vegetable Classics Soups, 18.5 to 19-oz.
Use $0.50/2 from 10-05 GM or $1.10/1 found here
Final Price $0.75 or FREE!!

Reeses or Kit Kat Snack Size Bags (Wednesday, Thursday & Friday ONLY... hurry!) $1.50
Use $2.50/2 coupon from 09-14 S
Final Price $0.25 each

Dannon Yogurt, 6-oz cup - cpn for Light n Fit $0.70
Use $1.00/6 coupon from 08-17 S
Final Price $0.53

General Mills Cheerios, 18-oz. Cereal (buy 5 get $1 off EACH box)
Use $1.00/3 or use $1.00/1 coupons here
Final Price $1.66 or $0.99 each

Orville Redenbachers Microwave Popcorn, 3 ct BOGO $1.75
Use $0.40/1 coupon from 10-12 S
Final Price $1.35

See any other deals worth mentioning?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Meals, Smiley girl, and Crochet

With no car for the week and one brief opportunity to get groceries, I had to plan well for our meal plan this week. Due to the circumstances and time constraints of our shopping trip, I had to deal with some less than stellar prices and had to stick to my shopping list even though it was based on a different store's sales flier!

My slightly crazy kitchen helper, who likes to hide under the kitchen sink.

Even so, we managed to spend just under $70 for 6 days worth of food for 3 people, one being a very small person:) Basically all we started out with was some salt and pepper, so I thought we did pretty well. This is definitely not the healthiest week ever, with our consumption of whole grains taking a nosedive (who knew they don't sell whole wheat flour in small town North Carolina?!?!?) but we are eating protein, some whole grain, dairy and fresh fruits and veggies every day.

Here is non other than the veggie-chopping diva herself, making homemade veggie soup.

If you want a low-cost menu for 4-6 people, the Hillbilly Housewife has a great breakdown of how to do it. The prices aren't realistic for my neck of the woods, but its a good place to start from and gives lots of food for thought:)

Here is my original meal plan, and what we are actually eating, day by day is listed below. Although as usually this will bore our friends and family to tears, I thought it might interest others who are looking for frugal food ideas a bit more:)


Breakfast for the first day was provided: cereal and juice boxes, bread for toast, jam and butter packets, some powdered milk and 3 eggs.

>Lunch: out with our new friend to a great local italian place. Not in our original budget, but worth it to get to know another missionary and to say thank you for the ride to the grocery!

Dinner: Homemade veggie/noodle soup and tuna cheese melts. I chopped up a 1/2 cup onion, and 2 cups of carrot/broccoli and sauteed in a little margarine. After the veggies were tender, I added several cups of water, 2 veggie bouillon cubes, 1/2 cup dried whole grain pasta (from home) and simmered until the noodles were tender. It actually was pretty good, and my 1 year old loved it. Daniel made the tuna melts, which were also very good:)


Breakfast: Pancakes from "Jiffy" mix with honey and margarine and milk/coffee

Lunch: Leftover soup, tuna melts and italian food

Dinner: out to a JAARS family house (tacos and pie:)


Breakfast: Pancakes from Jiffy mix, scrambled eggs, milk/coffee and tangerine for me

Lunch: Tacos with ground beef (stretched this with onions and oats, but was still good!), cheese, sour cream, salsa (forgot beans and lettuce)

Dinner: Tuna Noodle Casserole (using tuna packets from home, as well as whole grain pasta from home:)


Breakfast: Blueberry muffins from mix and leftover eggs with tangerines and milk/coffee

Lunch: Leftover Tuna Noodle Casserole

Dinner: With JAARs family


Breakfast: Pancakes with Honey and Margarine, bananas, milk/coffee

Lunch: More Tacos from leftovers

Dinner: Beef Stroganoff with Steamed Broccoli


Breakfast: Pancakes, Eggs, Coffee/Milk

Lunch: Leftover Beef Stroganoff with Steamed Broccoli

Dinner: Frozen Cheese Pizza with Carrot Sticks/Dip

Saturday: Coming home! We'll have whatever's left all day. Probably a few tangerines, a few slices leftover pizza, some granola bars we brought, PB&Honey Sandwiches, quesadillas, carrot sticks, etc. I also brought a chicken flavored rice mix from home that didn't end up in a meal so I may mix that up with leftover meat, veggies and cheese for our lunch before leaving for the airport. Airport food is so overpriced! If you have flown recently you probably noticed that you are lucky to get peanuts and a soda now, much less a meal even for longer flights. So we always try to pack more food than we think we'll need.

Oh and a tip...don't forget that pudding, dips and yogurt all count as liquid at the airport! Sadly, about a third of our food was thrown away at security because I was thinking of actually liquid, not stuff like pudding:(

On another note, my friend Marie is re-teaching me to crochet. I have been wanting to do a rug (actually with old t-shirts, but that is next) for a long time, but couldn't figure it out from online tutorials. So this has been a fun diversion while away from my normal tasks:) Thanks Marie!

M's newest thing is when she falls she will just lay down for awhile and be silly. Here is a demonstration:

Psalm 100- Praise

This psalm has come back to me several times the past few days in different forms.

Psalm 100

100:1 Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth!
Serve the Lord with gladness!
Come into his presence with singing!

Know that the Lord, he is God!
It is he who made us, and we are his; [4]
we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
and his courts with praise!
Give thanks to him; bless his name!

For the Lord is good;
his steadfast love endures forever,
and his faithfulness to all generations.

Monday, October 27, 2008

In North Carolina

We do indeed have internet here at the JAARS campus in Waxhaw, so pictures will be soon to come! The plane ride(s) were fairly uneventful and on the second leg we were seated with another passenger in our row of three but when he noticed free seats elsewhere in the plane he offered to give us more room and moved! It was an amazing blessing. Not only that but seated behind us was a Wycliffe member from Canada who then proceeded to be on the van ride home with us.

While driving to the JAARS campus we found out there would be no way for us to get the groceries we needed for the week until Monday (we arrived late Saturday night) and were wondering what to do. Our new friend then offered to not only take us to the nearest grocery on Sunday but to show us around the small town of Waxhaw. God took care of the details, as usual:) We asked our new friend about good restaurants in the area and took him out to show our appreciation...but the italian food was so good we were the lucky ones! And the southern hospitality at the restaurant was like none I had ever experienced.

God has been working in our hearts regarding missions for several months now in various ways. We are excited to see what He does, whether it involves going with JAARS or elsewhere in missions!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Favorite Picture of M thus far

The odds are usually about 1/10 that a picture will actually take with our current camera issue, so when a picture takes when M is doing what I was hoping to capture its practically a miracle! This picture makes me smile when I look at it:)

Another cute face of M:

Well, in another hour we're off to North Carolina to do an evaluation with Wycliffe (JAARS)! Hopefully I will be able to update while there, but not sure yet.

Other news, we had our first ultrasound and everything looks good so far! Heartbeat was 160, and the measurements lined up with our EDD. Praise the Lord!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Saving even on healthy foods/useful stuff

One of the objections people often have for not using coupons is that coupons are only for "name brand items" which is often true, or that they cook from scratch. I thought the same thing until I realized that you can get name brand, relatively healthy food (with the occasional junk splurge for treats) at great discount when you combine sales, coupons and catalinas. Here is a picture of a recent trip to Fred Meyer, where I got fresh Spinach for $0.99/bag, turkey sausage for $1.50 each, and Smart Taste Pasta for $0.33/box. Not bad for healthy food we'll use!

Here is a recent trip to Walgreen's where I spent under $9 out of pocket, but recieved $15 in register rewards back! It was great for getting some items I really needed. The medicine was just a bonus. Anyone nearby need any cold medicine?:)
And for the grandma's who don't care about my deal pics, but really want grandbaby pics, here is M, drinking out of her straw-sippy.

Meal Plan while at JAARS for evaluation

Since I need to do our meal plan for next week anyway, I thought I would share it with you all. We will rent a JAARS car the first day we are there (Sunday) and make a trip to the nearest grocery store. From what we can tell, the kitchen will be equipped with the basics, so this will be a lot easier than cooking during our trip to Texas! The goal is to buy what we need for 5 dinners, 6 lunches, and 6 breakfasts and not have to throw anything away. Yet I need meals that will be relatively easy to prepare no matter what I find in the kitchen.

Here's what I came up with so far:

Breakfasts: Toast w/jam, cold cereal (will bring some if room), eggs, milk and coffee

Lunches: Leftovers, Sandwiches (bringing PB), Quesadillas


*Soup and Grilled Tuna Melts (bringing tuna pouches)

*Roast Chicken, mixed veggies and instant brown rice mix

*Ground Beef Stroganoff with frozen peas

*Tacos (sourcream, salsa, cheese, canned beans, lettuce, chicken from roast chicken meal)

*Tator Tot Casserole (canned soup, ground beef, green beans topped with tator tots) and salad

*Frozen Pizza and carrots

Snacks: Carrots and dip, fruit, PB& J on toast, cheese and crackers (bringing these)

Grocery List:

2 cans soup (tomato)
2 lbs cheese
Uncle Dan's ranch mix
2 containers sour cream
tator tots (frozen)
3 cans cream of mushroom soup
ground beef (2 lbs)
bag frozen green beans
canned mushrooms
cream cheese
small whole chicken
bag frozen mixed veg
bag frozen peas
canned beans
small tubs margarine

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Safeway NW Deals for Oct. 22nd-Oct.28th, 2008

48 Hour Breakfast Sale Saturday & Sunday Only (25th & 26th)

Safeway Thick Sliced Hickory Bacon $4.99
Large Red Delicious, Golden or Granny Smith Apples $0.88/lb
Minute Maid Orange Juice 2/$4
Lucerne Butter $1.99 each

Coupon Deals

Mars Fun Size, 10.23 to 22-oz.
Use $1.00/2 coupon from 10-12 RP
Final Price $1.38

Reeses or KitKat Snack Size Bags, 10.50 to 10.79-oz. $1.40
Use $1.00/3 coupon from 09-28 S
Final Price $1.07

Hefty One Zip Storage or Sandwich Bags $1.65
Use $0.55/1 coupon from 09-28 RP
Final Price $1.10

Airborne Health Formula BOGO $4.25 (each)
Use $2.00/1 coupon from 09-07 S
Final Price $2.25

Zone Perfect Bars 10/$10
USe 1.00/1 coupon from 9/7 SS2
Final Price Free!

Betty Crocker Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn, 3 ct BOGO $1.65
Use $0.50/2 coupon from 10-05 GM
Final Price $1.40

Progresso Light & Reduced Sodium Soup - buy 2 get 3 free
Use $0.25/2 coupon from 09-07 GM (there are better coupons out there, but I don't have them!)
Final Price $0.90

Hillshire Farm Deli Select Hearty Sliced Lunchmeat $3.00
Use $0.55/1 coupon from 10-05 RP
Final Price $2.45

Bumble Bee Chunk White Albacore Tuna, 5 or 6-oz. (in water)$1.25
Use $0.55/1 coupon from 09-14 S
Final Price $0.70

Star Olive Oil BOGO (17 oz. each)
Use blinkie coupon found at display for $1.00/1 (may be able to use two)
Final Price either $8.59 for 2 or $7.59 for two if both coupons work!

Clairol Herbal Essences Shampoo or Conditioner, $2.50
Use $3.00/2 coupon from 10-12 PG
Final Price $1.00

Glade Air Freshener $1.00
USe $1.00/2 from 09-14 S
Final Price $0.50

What other deals have you seen?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Free Benefiber at Walgreen's this week!

If you want a free (or almost free if you don't have coupons) way to sneak more fiber into your diet, go to your local Walgreen's this week to stock up on drinkable Benefiber through Saturday!

Here's how it works:

Buy three(3) 16-count Kiwi Strawberry Benefiber drink mix ($7.99 each), find the Easy Saver coupon for $5 off in your EasySaver book (you only need one, just hand it over after all three Benefiber have scanned), then if you have them, use three $2 off manufacturer coupons. This will make your purchase $2.97 out of pocket, BUT you will receive an $8 Register Reward (good on your next purchase of anything at Walgreen's)! Just don't use it to buy more won't give you another RR.

*The best order to give the clerk your coupons so the register doesn't get all confused:) is: Register rewards (if you have them), manu coupons, then Walgreen's coupons. Remember to always have the same number of coupons as items (and the above all count towards your total!) so if you need to add a pencil or something, have that handy.*

I have done this without the manufacturer coupons (using up some RR I already had) and it worked great! Even without the manufacturer coupons this ends up being less than $1 out of pocket after Register Rewards.

I am drinking some right now and it tastes a little like Crystal Light...make sure to put it in a bottle and shake so that there aren't any unmixed bits:) This is a great way to get more fiber in your diet for free!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fun (not frugal) at the Corn Maze

Our local corn maze costs $8 per person! Yikes. We almost turned around and went home from sticker shock, but realized that it wouldn't make much sense at that point. So we determined to have fun, even if it was rather un-frugal:) Plus, we're supporting the local economy, right!?

Here are the few pictures we were able to get from our corn maze fun.

Daddy and M looking hard for the next maze marker (there were 6 in all, and the maze was 2.2 miles long if you did it all correctly the first time...we did not:)

Daddy and daughter walking into the sunset

Cheesy grin from daddy...happy to finally find this particular marker

Mommy and M at the last (or second to last?) marker...listening to the nearby cows

The funniest part of our adventure was M and her shoes. She hasn't learned to walk in shoes yet, but is quite steady on her feet in socks or barefoot. We thought she might be able to walk with us part of the way so we tried her shoes on at home first. She acted like her feet were broken. Then she took a step and tried to step OVER her shoes (like wearing huge moonboots or something?:). We tried again at the corn maze, but same thing. Finally we let her walk in her socks but she didn't like the uneven ground and kept falling in the mud or just standing there. We were both pretty worn out from carrying our big kid at the end!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Menu Plan for the Week of Oct. 20th, 2008

Breakfasts: Pancakes, Yogurt

Lunches: Leftovers

Snacks: bananas, cottage cheese, apples, yogurt, homemade granola, PB&J, chees and crackers (the snack list has gotten much longer since morning sickness hit:)


Monday: Pork Ribs, Mashed Potatoes, mixed Veggies and Pumpkin Cake (making double to take meal to a family with a new baby!)

Tuesday: Baked Ziti

Wednesday: Corn Chowder and Biscuits/or grilled cheese

Thursday: Mexican Tortilla Casserole or Chicken Sopa

Friday: Braided Pizza

Saturday: Spicy Veggie Burgers (chicken flavored) and leftover braided pizza at the airport

Sunday: We'll be in North Carolina this week for our evaluation with Wycliffe Bible Translators.

Visit Laura at Orgjunkie for more menu plan inspiration!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Earthy Crunchy Mama?

I definitely wouldn't describe myself as an earthy, crunchy type person, but now that we are considering a *gasp* homebirth for our next child (partially due to the fact that it is very hard to find anywhere to do a V-bac around here), I think I may be coming closer to that category all the time.

First it was the cloth diaper thing. Church friends and some family members looked at us a little weird when we said we wanted to do cloth diapers. Not only do we use cloth diapers, but we use the "old fashioned" no frills prefold kind!

But home birthing is a little more extreme than cloth diapering in most people's mind, including ours, and we are certainly not set on it yet. But as I discussed our situation and our options with a local midwife last night it became a more and more viable option for us. Daniel is supportive of a homebirth, but is a little concerned about our neighbors (we live in a 4-plex currently) who we can hear cough through thin walls sometimes! Might strain the neighbor-relations a bit, doncha know?:)

Anyway, these are things we are mulling through in our minds. If you think we are being really weird or really dumb, please do a little research first before you tell me so, k? There are a lot of things that are taken into consideration when candidacy for a homebirth (doing a vbac) are considered, such as proximity to a hospital if an emergency C-section is needed. So...thinking it all through.

Do you know people who've done a homebirth or have you had one? I would love to hear more specifics if you'd like to share in more detail at our blog email:

On an unrelated note, those of you who know us in real life know that our daughter has a hemangioma on her head, which is obvious in our pictures. Yesterday in her walking (which usually turns into a jog when she gets near her destination), she collided headfirst with the fridge corner. She now has a real "owie" on her forehead in addition to the hemangioma:) Above is a picture of M attacking her mom, pre-goose-egg.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Safeway NW Deals for Oct. 15th-21st 2008

Saturday & Sunday Only - 48 hour Entertaining Sale!
. 2-Liter Pepsi or 7-UP Selected varieties. 59¢
. Refreshe Water 24-pack, 16.9-oz. 2.88
. Hass Avocados Large size. Imported. 99¢ ea
. Tyson Hot & Spicy Cooked Chicken Wings Sold in the Meat Department 2.99 lb
Thanks to Hot Coupon world!

Coupon Deals

Duncan Hines Cake Mix - cpn for cake mix and frosting $1.00
Use $0.75/2 coupon from 10-12 S
Final Price $0.63

Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage, 14 to 16-oz $2.25
Use $1.00/2 coupon from 10-05 RP
Final Price $1.75

Prego Pasta Sauce $2.00
Use $0.75/2 coupon from 10-05 S1
Final Price $1.63

Scrubbing Bubbles Bathroom Cleaner - BOGO (est. price from couponmom) $1.50
Use $0.75/1 coupon from 09-21 S
Final Price $0.75

Swanson Broth, 14-oz. $0.60
Use $0.40/4 coupon from 09-28 S
Final Price $0.50

Kellogg's deal = 3 Frosted Mini Wheats @ $2.22, minus 3 $1 instant printables from Safeway website, = $3.66, minus $3 OYNO catalina = $0.66

This deal started awhile ago, but for some reason I haven't seen it any of my ads.
From Hot Coupon WorldBuy 4 save $4.

Participating products:
10oz Cracker barrel chunk cheese
8oz Cracker barrel cracker cuts
6oz Kraft cracker cuts
8oz Philadelphia cream cheese
cheese whiz cheese spread
Ritz crackers
Triscuits no size stated
Wheat thins
Honey maid graham cracker

Some are reporting that BOGO sales are working with this deal.

What other deals do you see?

Making Casseroles Cheaper and Healthier

Since the weather has turned chilly and I've turned, well, pregnant...I've been craving comfort food, especially casseroles. The only problem (well 2 to be exact) is that casseroles can often be more expensive than some of our regular meals and way less healthy! Both problems typically stem from several cans of expensive, none-too-healthy cream soup called for in most casserole recipes.

My solution: make my own recipe for white sauce to use in place of each can of white sauce! For the most part, it works wonderfully.

Here are the directions, super simple.

Melt 2 TBS Butter/Margarine in hot fry pan or griddle.
When fully melted, mix in 2 TBS flour (I use whole wheat or ww pastry and it works fine, just changes the color of the finished product) until smooth.
Immediately add 2 or so cups milk and continue to stir (with wisk if possible) until mixture thickens. Add salt/pepper to taste. This makes the equivalent of 1 can of cream of _____soup.

If you really need the flavor of the particular can of soup (cream of chicken for example) you can do one of two things: either use one can and one subs. of white sauce or add some bouillon in with the milk.

I use the white sauce with some of our favorite recipes such as (with mods of course):

Chicken Tortilla Casserole (recipe to come)
Tuna Noodle Casserole

Another couple tricks I use for increasing the health and financial value of the casserole are making my own bread crumbs from stale/leftover bread for the topping and adding vegetable puree or shreds to the binder. Since we have so much pumpkin right now, I have been adding that to recipes like Shepherd's pie.

Does your family enjoy casseroles? What are your favorites?

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Our little pumpkin and her daddy

Check out the cute purple coat from Grandma Karen! I love how she looks all bundled up in it, especially with the fleece hat from a garage sale. So cozy!

Peeking outside at the squirrels

I was finally able to capture one of the many sweet daddy-daughter moments.

Yesterday's Pumpkin Fun

When I brought up the topic of homemade pumpkin goodies made from fresh pumpkin with my husband, he was beyond enthusiastic. I think he drooled a little:)

This weekend I found a decent deal on a medium sized orange beauty. I forgot to take pictures until after I butchered it though. Yesterday the pumpkin-cooking and baking commenced! Here is what I did and what I plan to do with the remaining pumpkin:

Scooping, scraping out those tasty little seeds (so good for you too!)

All clean! Notice my precious to the left:)

I microzapped 1/4 of the pumpkin so I could make waffles sooner (15 minutes on high) and crocked the rest for several hours. I think I might try the oven and microwave if we get another.

Finished pumpkin seeds...yum! I cleaned and dried them most of the way, then brushed melted butter, salt, cayenne, and pepper over them evenly. Baked at 325 degrees for 30 minutes with our dinner: Shepherd's Pie!

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Waffles. The pumpkin wasn't super noticable in these, but they have a nice spice and texture. They used up some of the abundant milk we have too!

I am going to make pumpkin bread today, and some sort of peanut butter treat. Something about being back into our normal routine and grey Pacific NW weather makes me want to bake. If my baking turns out, I will make sure and share:)

Monday, October 13, 2008

Menu Plan for Oct. 13th, 2008

Breakfasts: Zucchini Whole Wheat Dark Chocolate Muffins, Pumpkin Pancakes, yogurt

Lunches: Leftovers

Snacks: bananas, cottage cheese, apples, yogurt, homemade granola, PB&J, chees and crackers (the snack list has gotten much longer since morning sickness hit:)


Monday: Shepherd's Pie

Tuesday: Teryaki Chicken and Veggies over Brown Rice

Wednesday: Southwest Salad

Thursday: Tacos (roll up the leftover beans, cheese, lettuce and corn from the Southwest Salad in homemade tortillas)

Friday: We usually have Whole Wheat Cheese Pizza! our every friday night tradition!

Saturday: Tuna Melts on the Road

Sunday: Corn Chowder with Sourdough bread from the freezer

Visit Laura at Orgjunkie for more menu plan inspiration!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Super Savings Saturday: Walgreen's and Albertson's

Over at Money Saving Mom, check out where everyone is getting the best deals!
Pictured above are the Walgreen's deals a week ago. Some of the best deals shown were the free Hebert's chocolates, free Altoids and by using the $5/$20 coupon I was able to use some register rewards and a few dollars and received $8 in RR back!

Albertson's was full of good deals again last week! For $42, I got all of the above (I know its hard to see everything) but included are some pricy things like several pounds of cheese, 5 lbs of hamburger, 21 packets of tuna, 4 packages of dark chocolate chips, juice, organic tomatoes, and Newman's own sauces. Not pictured is the free whole wheat french bread and the spicy veggie burger's.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Menu Plan and morning sickness

Here is our menu plan for the remainder of the week, including last nights casserole, which was a hit with all of us.

Breakfast: Whole Wheat Zucchini Muffins with Dark Chocolate (so good!) and eggos with apple butter from my sis-in-law Cathy.

Lunches: Leftovers


Thursday: Creamy Chicken Tortilla Casserole based on this recipe (I doubled it and brought a meal to a church friend who had surgery) with salad and chips

Friday: French Bread Pizza (more free bread from Albertson's) so I will be topping that with pre-made spagetti sauce, cheese and a little hamburger (pre-cooked from the freezer)with carrot sticks and dip

Saturday: Chicken Rice Casserole, loosely based on this recipe. I will be adding a rice mix instead and some zucchini. Served with acorn squash on the side.

Sunday: Quesadillas and salad

Morning sickness is worse this time around. The only reason I am pretty sure this is the case is that last year with M I had a desk job and plenty of time to dwell on my feeling yucky whereas this time I am chasing a toddler and constantly busy so I am not dwelling on it. The time change and weird eating our travel days (coming back from Indy) didn't help much. This morning I barely made it to the kitchen to grab some yogurt to calm my crazy stomach!

A friend from Bible study is letting me try out some "sea bands" to try out (they target your wrist pressure points and are supposed to help with sea-sickness or morning sickness in some cases. Too soon to tell. Another Bible study friend recommended ginger, which I haven't tried yet. Small meals helps, but its a fine line with eating the right amount at the right time.

Other than that, things are going well and this Saturday I will be about 8 weeks along! I still have to figure out Dr./midwife stuff since we have a new insurance through Daniel's workplace and it seems confusing. I am hoping to find someone who will support a v-bac (vaginal birth after caesarean) this time around. I live on the Kitsap Penninsula (at least for a little while longer)! So if you know of anyone, let me know!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

We're BAaack!

We had a wonderful time catching up with the family and friends in Indy this past week (end for Daniel). The one thing that I always hate is the unpacking/cleaning that comes with the aftermath of a trip! It was really bad this time--we had a bloody nose situation that left our only bedding a stained mess and got about 13 tons of mail. The cool thing was that I got a ton of free samples in the mail!

Here are some pics from our trip that Grandma and Grandpa Crosby shared with us.

Auntie Cathy and cousins checking out the elephants

Watching the show with the cousins

M and her daddy's childhood purdue doll.

At the zoo, checking out the animals.

Bye Bye Zoo!