Monday, May 31, 2010

Great Deals and Freezer Cooking Coming Up!

I kind-of disappeared for a while there!  Sorry about that.  We've been pretty busy around here.  I'd like to say things are slowing down a bit, but they're just getting started.  June is crazy busy with all kinds of fun!

It's been a great start to the week already, though.
These are all of the great deals I got at CVS and Publix today!  Would you believe it if I told you I paid under $50.00 for ALL of that?  It's true! 

You're looking at free floss, bleach, toilet paper, batteries, Shedd's Spread, q-tips, snack cheese and more!  I only wish I could have gotten a clearer shot so you could really see everything.

It's the first of the month (well, tomorrow is) and that means it's time for another freezer cooking!  This one is going to be a little different.  Due to an excess of meals from last month still in the freezer (over half of the meals are still in there) and a HUGE lack of good deals on meat, I'm going to primarily be baking this month.

We'll be doing a variety of muffins, biscuits, pancake and bread mixes, hamburger and hot dog buns, and maybe something a few things sweet.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Having A Garden in a Small Backyard

Yep.  That's what we've been working on this week.  My dear, sweet husband has built a box garden for me.  And after he did that and filled it with wonderful organic soil, I decided that my box garden would be even prettier and more productive with a pergola built over it.  At first, there was excitement over this idea and then a lot of grumbling when we realized it would have been much easier to have had that idea before we filled the box with dirt.

But my dear, sweet (can't emphasize that enough) husband (who is so patient with my GREAT ideas) is working on getting it built.

I've got all of my Buy-One-Get-One Free Organic plants from Home Depot and my free Topsy Turveys that I got with reward points and some free seeds a friend gave us.  Now, if we could just find time to get it all in the ground (like I should be doing now).

Pictures soon!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Are You Using Your Swagbucks?

This week is "Winning Moments Week" at Swagbucks.  The number of times you are able to win are doubled (at least) this week!  I normally win only about twice each day and I've already won BIG numbers this morning. 

I love saving my Swagbucks and redeeming them for Amazon giftcards (a $5 giftcard is 450 points).  I've gotten cookbooks, HDMI cables and more for free all from using Swagbucks to do searches instead of Google.  If you wanted, you could save all of your Amazon giftcards and use them to take advantage of the amazing deals on Amazon at Christmas time!  You could potentially get all of your gifts for free and never have to leave your house!! 

Half-Priced Frappuccinos at Starbucks

I don't normally post things like this, but I'm so excited I had to share!  May 7-16, between 3 and 5 everyday, Starbucks is offering their frappucinnos at half price!  Their strawberries-and-creme fraps are amazing!  You may see me there every day!

Find out more HERE.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Freezer Cooking - Another Great Success!

I still have about 4-5 more meals to add to all of this, but we are pretty well stocked for the next month (or two)!  I started at about 8 am Sunday morning hoping that doing this on a weekend (when my hubby could help watch the kids) would save some time.  Didn't quite work out that way.  I finished 21 meals on Sunday, fixed a few more on Monday and I'm about to finish up the rest tonight.  Here's the list of what we have so far (what you see in the freezer):

1 Jambalaya Bake
2 Chicken Tetrazzini
2 Hamburger dinners
1 French Stuffed Potatoes
1 Chicken Pot Pie
1 Chicken Broccoli Casserole
2 Barbecued Chicken
2 Creamy Enchiladas
1 Smothered Burritos
1 Beef Stroganoff
1 Meatloaf
1 Caraway Pot Roast
2 French Bread Pizzas
1 Taco Pie
2 Chicken Supreme
2 Chicken and Wild Rice Soup
1 Chicken Scampi
2 Upside-Down Fettuccine Bake
3 Barbecued Chicken for Sandwiches
2 Chinese Chicken
Total = 31 meals

I got most of these recipes from two new cookbooks that I just bought:  Once-A-Month Cooking Family Favorites and Once-A-Month Cooking both by Mimi Wilson and Mary Beth Lagerborg.  Many of these are fairly large meals and will last our family 2+ nights each.  Once I'm done tonight, we should have at least 40 meals that will last us two months!

I did have to spend about $180 at the store to get all of the ingredients I needed.  That definitely is a large chunk of our budget.  Since I already have most breakfasts taken care of, though, that only leave produce, a few lunch and snack items and milk on my grocery list!  We're shooting for a $250 grocery budget this month and I'm aiming for $200 next month!

I still plan on doing a freezer cooking day at the beginning of June to add a few more dinners to the stock, but I plan on focusing on breakfast, lunch and snack freezer items.  I'm excited to see what I can come up with!