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Showing posts from February, 2011

Menu Planning Monday

Well here goes my menu for the week..

Breakfast ---- cereal, waffles, yogurt, fruit etc

Lunches------mac and cheese, turkey sandwiches, grilled cheese sandwiches,peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, (with fruit, vegs)


Monday ........Pancakes/ eggs/ sausages with fruit cocktail

Tuesday.........Our Homemade Chili

Wednesday....Leftover Chili

Thursday........Chicken Enchiladas with rice, corn

( I will post my Chicken Enchilada recipes later

in the week it is super easy and cheap!)

Friday.............Leftover Chicken Enchiladas with rice, green beans

Saturday..........Homemade Pizza

Sunday...........Turkey, stuffing, potatoes, broccoli, cranberries sauce

Frugal Friday Menu Planning to Save Money

Before I got serious about saving money on our food budget I went to the store way too often in the week (3-4 times), I did not make a list and did not have any coupon system in place. We ate basically whatever I thought up that day or the day before. Well with the price of food going up as well as everything else I needed to change. I found that with menu planning I can save a lot of money. Ways menu planning helps…

• We can use up what we have in the house to maximize our leftovers

• I can use what is on sale for the week to plan my meals

• I can make a list based off my menu and gather the most coupons to increase my savings

• I go to the store once (well twice since my family drinks a lot of milk) It saves time and I save a ton of money not running to the store every couple of days (those impulse purchases do add up)

Some Great Money Saving Blogs to Check Out

In my quest to save our family money I have come accross many great websites and blogs.
Here are a few that you might want to look at they usually offer not only great money saving tips but freebies, coupons and sales notifications.

My favorite is Money Saving Mom she offers such a down to Earth approach to saving money.

Another great site is Hip to Save and I also like Deal Seeking Mom all of these have great money saving ideas.

Do you have a favorite or new site that can help to save money please share in the comments.

Boston Store or Younkers Coupon Code

I have a great Get $10 off your next purchase of $25 or more online at Boston Store or Younkers.

Just use Discount Code RNDYSFBCP11 code is good Sunday February 13- Saturday February 26, 2011.

*It excludes incredible values, bonus buys, door busters and some other speciality purchases

Works For Me Wednesday Stocking Up Sick Supplies

Well the influenza has hit our home this week. First my oldest son and now my youngest. So far no one else but chances are the other two will be coming down with it soon. So am I glad that I had done some stocking up on supplies that we need when they get sick.I have the Advil and Tylenol that we need (we need different types since some use the children's and some adult dosages). We also have honey on hand. I love using that for their coughs it really helps and hey, they are excited about taking it since its honey. I also had stocked up at Walgreen's before when Kleenex was on sale so we have plenty on hand. Also I have Gatorade, juices, and water bottles to hydrate them up.

Thank goodness I have everything because I definitely don't want to take them out to get anything and by the time my husband comes home from work I am in no mood to go shopping. Also is saves us money since I bought ahead with sales and coupons instead of running out and emergency buying at full cost.

Swagbucks Upcoming Birthday Rewards For New and Existing Members

Swagbucks is gearing up to their birthday celebration on February 28th. If you are not familiar with Swagbucks is a website that gives you chances to earn Swagbucks with codes, offers and with using there search engine. These Swagbucks came easily add up fast and earn you many different things but I love the Amazon gift cards. Now is a great time to join with a special 30 swagbucks to new sign ups and an additional 50 swagbucks by using code 3rdBirthday5.

Also don't forget to go back to their website on February 28th to join them with on birthday celebration to earn more Swagbucks.

Menu Monday

Well the influenza has shown up at our home. First my oldest son and now my youngest son. So with half the kids sick and the high possibility of the rest of us getting sick this week I am posting my menu but planning on having a lot of flexibility on how this week works out. Especially if I get sick well ... they might just all be eating peanut butter jelly sandwiches for dinner for a few nights.

* Breakfasts will be waffles, fruit, cereal
* Lunches  will be mac and cheese, ravioli, turkey sandwiches with carrots, salad or fruit

Monday         Leftovers from Birthday party and salad

Tuesday          Slow cooker BBQ Chicken with
                       homemade coleslaw and chips

Wednesday     Leftover BBQ Chicken/ hot dogs
                       coleslaw and chips

Thursday        Spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, sliced carrots

Friday             Spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, salad

Saturday         Homemade pizzas and carrots

Sunday           Turkey, potatoes, stuffi…

Frugal Friday

I am trying to go more green reducing the chemicals in my home and save money at the same time. I found that a great way to do this is by using vinegar to clean. It works great on my floors and also I use it to clean out my coffee maker. For the floors I use ¼ cup in a gallon of water and for the coffee maker I use ½ cup to 6 cups water. The vinegar is cheap and I feel so much better not using harsh chemicals in my home.

Our Homemade Chili Recipe

Here is a nice low cost meal that really will fill up the family this makes enough to serve my family two nights
I would say is is about eight adult servings.

1lb ground beef

One medium onion chopped

One green pepper chopped ( we use our frozen ones from our garden last year)

1 small can green chilis(chopped)

32oz diced tomatoes (do not drain) (2 small cans or 1 large can) (we use ours from our garden last year)

One can tomato soup

8oz or 1 cup kidney or red beans ( I like to cook up a bag of dry beans and freeze them for meals like this)

One small can tomato paste

4TBS Chili powder

3 cloves garlic

2tsp black pepper

1tsp salt

Optional Franks Hot Sauce 1tsp

Brown ground beef and drain. Sauté onion with beef then add green pepper, diced tomatoes, tomato soup, One tomato soup can of water, green chilies, beans, can of tomato paste and stir until blended. Then add chili powder, garlic, black pepper and salt. Bring to boil then turn down heat and simmer on low for one hour. We like to serv…

Free Tide Stain Release Spray at 3 p.m. ET (First 5000!)

Today (2/17) at 3 p.m. ET, Tide will be giving away 5,000 FREE bottles of Stain Release Spray to their Facebook fans These will go fast, so be sure to "like" Tide on Facebook now so you're ready!

One Thing to Make Mornings Less Stressful

I am not a morning person. The more I can do the night before to get ready the better. I function better on autopilot in the mornings.With four kids to get ready for school that can be hard . What works for me is on Sunday night I get their snacks for school ready. Since I find it too expensive to buy individual size packs of snacks I like to use the small snack size Ziploc bags. I get out whatever we have (pretzels, crackers, raisins, goldfish crackers, or???) and I divide it up in Ziploc bags to last the week. Then each night when I am going through the backpacks checking homework, signing assignment notebooks and such I just put a bag in and we are ready to go.

10,001 Ways To Live Large On A Small Budget

I just got done reading a book by the writers of Wise Bread (a finance blog).10,001 Ways to Live Large on a Small Budget it was very informative. Since it is written by many people it has a great wealth of knowledge from many different aspects. The main parts are frugal living and personal finance. I found a lot of new ideas in the book for frugal living..I really liked the food section since that is where so much of our budget goes. I also like the back of the book that has resources area with many blogs and websites that can help you save money and help with your personal finances. I would definitely recommend this book.10,001 Ways to Live Large on a Small Budget

Sunbelt Buy One Get One Free Coupon

Here is a great Buy One Get One Free Coupon from Sunbelt. Just go to theirFacebook page and like them. Then you can click on the buy one get one free image and get your coupon.

I found some books my second grade son likes to read!

My second grade son is a reluctant reader. He just does not see reading as fun. The only time he does read is when I tell him that he needs too (like the 15 mins he needs to read nightly for school). Well, was I surprised to come into his room and find him reading a book for fun of all things. It was Diary of  a Spider by Doreen Cronin. It is a really cute book with engaging pictures and a not too much text on a page that can frustrate my son.

Well since he likes that book so much. I just came back from the library with the others in the series. Diary of a Worm, Diary of a Fly and I saw that Doreen Cronin also authored a Caldecott award winner Click, Clack, Moo Cows That Type. They all look cute and fun to read so hopefully I will turn my son into a reader yet!

If you have any other good books for second grade boys please let me know. I am always trying to find ideas for him.

Menu Plan Monday

Well here is our menu plan for the week. Not very exciting with leftovers on two of the nights but we are very tight with money this week and need to eat what we have in the house so....

Breakfasts:       Cereal  waffles, pop tarts, multi grain bars ect

Lunches:           Mac and cheese, turkey sandwiches, grilled cheese , with fruit and vegetables


Monday:          Turkey Potpie (this is the chicken version but since we have leftover turkey in the freezer that is what we are having)

Tuesday:         Chili (here is the recipe)

Wednesday:    Leftover chili

Thursday:       Meatloaf with broccoli and mac and cheese

Friday:            Leftover meatloaf with green beans and tomato soup and noodles

Saturday:        Birthday party at relatives house ( we are bringing soda, milk, garlic bread and desert)

Sunday:           Pancakes, scrambled eggs, and sausages with apple slices

Free Pancakes At IHOP Mark Your Calendars For March 1, 2011

I Hop is have a free National Pancake Day on March 1, 2011.

All they ask is that consider leaving a little something behind for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals and other designated local charities.

Frugal Friday The Library

I can't say enough about using the library to save money. I keep a list of books, movies etc that I want to read or watch. I go online to our library's website and search for the books/ movies.When I find what I want I put a hold on it with my library card. The great thing is my library is part of a county wide library system so I have access to a huge amount of books/ movies. I get the hold placed then wait for an email to let me know they are ready for pick up at my local library. So easy I just go to the check in area they scan my card and they grab my stack of books and there I go off to enjoy them. Oh the books usually are ready by the next day too!

This works great for my children's books to I go through the scholastic catalogs they receive in school and pick out what they want and do the same for them.

Works For Me Wednesday

I love the new Weight Watchers program. They changed how they calculate points and the best thing is all fruits are free as are most vegetables.

I heart fruit and I am always hungry so I have been found different ways to prepare it to satisfy my sweet tooth.

My newest is a banana blueberry smoothie.I put one banana and a 1/2 cup of blueberries with about five ice cubes and 1/3 cup milk in the blender until smooth. Yummy!!! and it is only 1 point.

7 Ways To Save Money On Children's Clothes

• Let people know what you children need and their sizes. I have really found that by letting grandparents, aunts, uncles ect know what the children really need and their sizes they are grateful to give a gift that is appreciated and we save money on not having to buy some clothes.

• Accept hand me downs and keep any hand me downs from older siblings organized. Any and all hand me downs are always helpful. Use what you can and you can always donate what you don’t like or can’t use. Organizing the hand me downs is essential though if you cant find it or you don’t know you have it you cant use it. I like to put the clothes in totes and label them by size/ gender and each season I look through and see what we can use.

• Shop garage / rummage sales you can find great deals on children clothes. I especially love rummage sales put on by moms groups and twin’s clubs .You can buy ahead so that you have that winter coat or boots when you need it and you don’t have to go out and pay retail pric…

Goals For Feburary, Better Late Than Never

Well here are my late goals for February.

* Continue my daily Bible reading of the Bible in a year in chronological order.

* Lose 2 lbs using Weight Watchers.

* Work on my attitude towards my family (using patience, grace and tolerance)

* Read two books

* Plan garden for this year

* Work on my blog and learn how to get it going

* Lastly to make sure I post my goals and their results on the first of the month

Superbowl Sunday. Go Packers!!!

Superbowl Sunday is here and our family is very excited. We are Green Bay Packers fans and can't wait until kick off. It is our tradition to eat something from the opposing teams city so we are making Primanti Style Sandwiches from Pittsburgh, they sound yummy. They were very over our food budget but hey the Packers don't get to the Superbowl often so we splurged.Looking foward to a good game and enjoying time with my family.

I am tired of winter and thinking of spring

I am done with winter here in Wisconsin. I am not a winter person to begin with. I tend to hibernate in the winter because I cannot tolerate the cold (can you believe I have lived all my life in Wisconsin?) Anyways I am dreaming of spring and planning my garden. I had posted my list of things that I think we are going to grow but I still need to research some things and plan out the garden space.I need to get to the library to pick up some books on gardening. I will post later about any good books that I find.

Planning my garden

Even though we are still digging out from our blizzard we had. I am thinking of our garden for this year. I have found that we are able to save so much money when we grow our own vegtables.And with food prices only expected to go higher we need a good garden plan. So what am I planning on growing this year:

green peppers
green beans
butternut squash??
herbs ???

I am not sure if we have enough room for the squash I have to check how big of an area that takes to grow and the herbs I definitely want to grow but I am not sure on the types yet.Also I am thinking of some cold weather crops broccoli, brussel sprouts or lettuce maybe.I need to pull out my gardening book and check.


We have had a crazy blizzard yesterday and this morning. We have drifts up to four feet high! This is a picture I took looking out one of our windows.