From the weather forecast of last week, I knew that I need to plan on all of us being home this week, which means extra sweets and treats needed. Amanda is also staying with us during the snow. I made a trip to Walmart on Thursday night and purchased all the things I thought we would need. So far after 3 full days at home we are still doing really well. My best guess is that the kids will be out of school all week. I will have a workday on Friday or maybe both Thursday and Friday. My goal is to make a batch and have some left-overs to use again. Soup is always a big hit on these cold snowy days.
Breakfast- Saturday- Pancakes and Sausage balls Sunday-Sausage, Egg and Cheese Biscuits, Monday- Gravy and biscuits, Tuesday- Sausage crescent rolls and left-over pancakes, Wednesday- Waffles, Thursday- Muffins and Friday- Choice of any available left-overs oatmeal, grits cereal, toast or eggos waffles.
Lunch-Saturday-Sausage dip, taco dip, Crock Pot wieness, with fruit and vegetable trays. Sunday-Chicken and Rice . Monday and Tuesday- Sandwich or choice of Left-overs. Wednesday- Mac and cheese or pasta, Thursday Sandwich or left-overs, Friday- Soup of choice
Dinner – Saturday-Leftovers, kids had pizza at church. Sunday- Left-overs from Olive Garden, Monday-Stuffed Green Pepper Soup Tuesday- Country Style steak, fried squash and green beans Wednesday-Instapot Potato Soup , Thursday- Beef and Broccli in the crockpot Friday-Pizza.
Things are starting to slow down a bit. Lily had three performances this weekend and Kendall has her last art class this week. Matt will be out of town at a work function on both Monday and Tuesday nights.
Breakfast- Saturday- Sausage, eggs, grits, toast and hash browns Sunday-Biscuit Monday Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday- Choice of oatmeal, grits cereal, toast or eggos waffles.
Lunch-Saturday-Left overs Sunday-Mexican. Monday- Sandwich . Kids have lunch packed including soup, uncrustables and chicken nuggets. I will be in a conference with lunch provided Wednesday and Thursday. So just a couple days of food for me.
Dinner – Saturday-Leftovers Sunday- Roast- Hawaiian style Monday-Potato soup Tuesday- Chicken Enchiladas, Wednesday- Chicken nuggets , Thursday- Salisbury steak Friday-left overs.
I see light at the end of the tunnel, our schedule should begin to slow down after this week as baseball season is over. Lily has two weeks until her performance and work is slowing to a normal pace for me. Both Lily and Zach had orthodontic appointments with changes made to their braces so I attempt to keep things soft for a couple of days as well. You will notice several things different about this plan as we are eating out several times and we need to use up left-overs the other evenings.
Breakfast- Saturday- Pimento cheese and Bacon Biscuits, Sunday-Sausage Cresant rolls Monday- Bagels Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday- Choice of oatmeal, grits cereal, toast or eggos waffles.
Lunch-Saturday-Rice Kerola Sunday-Chicken stew . Kids have lunch packed including soup, uncrustables and chicken nuggets. I will be eating out on Monday and Friday this week. But plan to take left overs the rest of the week.
Dinner – Saturday-Leftovers Sunday- hot dog supper at church , Monday-Chicken nugget bowls Tuesday- left overs , Wednesday- IHPOP , Thursday- Hamburgers and French fries Friday-left overs or pizza depending on my mood.
I don’t think there should be any doubt that eating a meal at home is way less expensive than eating out. For example, tonight I made oyster stew for four of us for dinner. Total cost $4 including ketchup and crackers so approximately $1 each.
But have you thought about homemade being healthy as well? Matt worked in the restaurant industry for several years and he shared with me one time how a new “organic” restaurant was making there own vegetable stock from the throw away parts of salad ingredients. Now if you know my family, we are not exactly the vegetarian type but it got me thinking and I did some research. I learned that basically chicken broth and beef broth are both water with flavor/fat. So I decided to make my own and save the $6.95 it cost at Walmart. The homemade version contains way less salt and no preservatives!
Last night we enjoyed T-bone steaks from our freezer for dinner. After we finished eating, I simply tossed the remaining bones and fat in several crockpots. I fill with water and turn on low for 12 to 15 hours. No cost really. This morning I turned the pots off and tonight I packaged up the beef broth in Ziploc bags which I was paid to take out of Walmart. Any time a recipe calls for beef broth or a beef bullion cube I use our beef broth. It has no extra preservatives, no extra salt and usually increased the taste of most foods.
I did clean out one of the small crockpots and started a pot of homemade spaghetti sauce. I used up all the tomatoes that we picked last week ahead of the freezing temperatures, green peppers also from the garden. I have dried oregano, frozen basil and parsley leaves that also ended up in the pot. I have this cooking all night and will use the immersion blender in the morning to make the sauce smooth. Again really no cost for us and it contains no preservatives or ingredients I can’t pronounce.
After a really expensive spending week, I am so glad to save some money and keep us on a good financial track.
We usually plan our menu by the month and most times we do the menu planning before going to the store. This Saturday morning we did just that menu plan for the month before heading to Costco. At Costco, we decided to purchase both bagels and Hawaiian Rolls. I definitely did not want these to go to waste so our plan has officially changed twice. But this is life and the ultimate goal is for nothing to go to waste. We are also eating out 3 separate times this week but with a gift card hopefully will still stay on budget.
Breakfast- Saturday- Pimento cheese and Bacon Biscuits, Sunday-Bagels Monday- Bagels Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday- Choice of pop-tarts, breakfast burrito bowl, egg muffins, cereal, toast. eggos or grits.
Lunch-Saturday-Costco Sunday- Mexican restaurant with friends . Kids have lunch packed including lunchables, uncrustables and wraps. My goal is to only eat out on Friday this week: salad, Chicken salad lettuce wraps, grab and go .
Dinner – Saturday-Leftovers Sunday- bagels with choice of topping , Monday-Baked Potatoes Tuesday- Party pop up rolls aka Hawaiian Rolls with meat , Wednesday- Shrimp fettuccine alfredo , Thursday- Chick Filet . Friday-Pulled pork and carrots.
This has been a bit of a different weekend. Everyone was home from Thursday till Monday. All three kids were out of school on Monday so things are a little off. We did manage to eat out only 1 meal (Sunday lunch) and I did prepare a lot of food ahead for the coming weeks and months. You will notice extra soup and soft foods on the menu this week, both Zach and Lily had their braces tighten and need some softer options.
Breakfast- Saturday-Eggs and Bacon, Sunday-Quick meal (we woke up late) Monday- Eggs and toast, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday- Choice of pop-tarts, breakfast burrito bowl, egg muffins, cereal, toast. eggos or grits.
Lunch-Saturday-Baked Potato soup in Instapot Sunday- Coach’s Restaurant with friends . Kids have lunch packed including lunchables, uncrustables and wraps. My goal is to only eat out on Friday this week: salad, humus , pimento cheese and crackers . I even managed to take my lunch on the work day which was Monday.
Dinner – Saturday-Country Style steak Sunday- left-overs , Monday-White Bean chicken chill Tuesday- Soft Taco , Wednesday-Chicken and Broccoli Casserole, Thursday- Sloppy joes and French Fries. Friday-cowboy beans and corn bread(I made baked Ziti last week and ate so we just brought this forward.)
I was surprised and excited to learn on Wednesday that due to the impending hurricane, my school system would close early on Thursday and be closed all day on Friday of this week. The reason for my excitement was the thought of how much I could get ahead with cooking. I made a trip to the grocery store to grab the stuff I needed to make baked ziti Wednesday night. I also ended up sending Matt to the store Thursday night to get some shells we needed.
Here is what my day looked like:
Breakfast- triple batch of sausage gravy. The remainder will stay in the fridge for use for either a hearty quick breakfast or breakfast bowls for dinner next week.
After breakfast, I browned 3# of hamburger meat. We bought a new pan at Costco that made this job so much easier. The meat went into the crockpot with taco seasoning and water while we ventured out to piano.
Lunch- Matt ate an burrito, Zach and Lily had mashed potatoes. Both had adjustments to their braces on Thursday. I had hummus and chips and Kendall a sandwich. After lunch, Matt and I formed an assembly line and made 27 beef and bean burritos. We froze these. Two minute in the microwave and these make a great lunch or quick dinner.
Dinner-I started working on dinner around 3pm. Using my Baked Ziti recipe
( I plan to post and update the link on Saturday). It is very simple to make one ziti to eat and another for freezing. We ended up having friends over for dinner. I was able to pull enough lettuce out of the garden to make a decent salad.
Accomplishment of the day: 3 breakfast meals, 25 frozen burritos and two awesome baked ziti!
We have added several kid activities this week and anticipate that I will begin skype in Guam some time this month. We are adjusting our plans and hopefully will find a new normal very quickly. I have discovered that I simply do not have the time to fix eggs in the morning. I also do not like cereal and a eggo waffles is not enough food. Matt and I cooked up breakfast burrito stuff and egg muffins to make our morning much easier.
Breakfast- Saturday-Biscuits (choice of toppings), Sunday-Men’s breakfast and gravy biscuits. Monday- Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday- Choice of pop-tarts, breakfast burrito bowl, egg muffins, cereal, toast. eggos or grits.
Lunch- left-overs Sunday- Gregg’s Restaurant with friends . Kids have lunch packed including lunchables, uncrustables and wraps. My goal is to only eat out on Friday this week: salad, humus , pimento cheese and crackers . I was successful with only eating out last week on Friday.
Dinner – Saturday-steaks and sweet potatoes, Sunday- left-over or breakfast food prep , Monday-Rice Creola, Tuesday- cheese quesadilla and Mexican rice , Wednesday-Bagel bites , Thursday- Pork fried rice and egg rolls Friday-cowboy beans and corn bread.