Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Monthly Menu Plan - 12/19 thru 1/22

I may or may not have gotten my dates one day off last month...

But, regardless, it was there! And here is the meal plan for this coming month.

If you stumble onto my blog and want me to publish a recipe I use, or link to a recipe that I use that is online, please leave a comment and I will add it!

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Monthly Menu Planner
Starts 11/21, ends 12/19

L/O or MYO = Leftovers or Make Your Own (hey, I need a night off too!) to clean out the fridge
Tuesdays/Thursdays are vegetarian nights.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

$500 Challenge - Results

In April, I took on the challenge issued by Family Balance Sheet to find $500 around the house. I succeeded! Well, if you can count each of my "finds" below!

Here is what I did:

1. Reimbursement Check Found – forgot to cash previously $60.75, it's been sitting in a bag, just waiting to go to the bank - duh, that was a no brainer!

2. Submitted Lawnmower Class Action Settlement Claim. It says up to $35 is awarded. Easy enough!

3. Sold trailer $300 (Does it count if my husband sold it?)

4. Found $.75 in lunchbox that I almost never use.

5. Returned Cans at the store that have been cluttering the garage for $6.65. Killed two birds with one stone on that one! Cleaning and making money.

6. Saved $120 on my Internet bill, just by calling and renewing the contract for 1 year instead of paying month to month. We're not planning on moving in the next year anyway, so that was a pretty good deal for me.

7. Redeemed Reward points for a $50 gift card from credit card rewards program. The points were just sitting there accumulating.

So the grand total for the month was $573.15. Not bad. Wish I could do that Every Month!

In addition, I was dead-set on NOT going over on the grocery budget, which I have a small habit of doing. Not because we eat a lot, or eat extravagantly. It's because when I see a good price on things like whole wheat pasta and canned beans and tomatoes, I stock up. Oh, and I also found a great deal on cheese last month. But, in my experience, awareness is the key to budgeting, and knowing when it's OK to go the $30 over, and when it's not. I didn't spend a lot in some of the other categories, so I was able to make it work.

I hope one of my "finds" can help you too. If mine didn't help, maybe you can find some tips at one of the blogs linked to this page Family Balance Sheet.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

$500 Challenge

This Month, another blog I read, Family Balance Sheet, is doing a challenge to find $500 around your house/in your budget. I think I'm going to try it too. What can it hurt? I can always use the extra money. =)

What will I spend it on? Hmmm, I'll have to think on that one.

Here are the things I am going to start with:
- Take back all of the bottles & cans for the refund
- Use more coupons at the grocery store
- Simply NOT spend part of my budget in one category (or another, or some of a few...)
- Fill out as many rebates as I have laying around
- Submit a Lawnmower Class Action Settlement Claim

Hopefully I can come up with more ideas!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Tasty Recipe - Shells with Broccoli & Onion

This dish was so tasty and so easy, I even had dinner done early because I thought it would take more time than it did!

Shells with Broccoli & Onion
6 oz mini shell pasta
1 yellow onion
3-ish cloves of garlic, crushed (more if you like it!)
2 TBS cooking oil (I used canola, could use olive, but I don't care for the flavor...)
1 pkg frozen broccoli
about 3/4 C walnut pieces
about 1/2 C grated parmesan
salt & pepper to taste

Start the water for the pasta in a large pot. Heat the oil in a skillet. Add the onion and garlic. Saute the onion and garlic until the onion is toasted brown, and starting to turn almost black. Some black parts are OK, and even add flavor.

Toast the walnuts in a dry pan to soften the flavor. Don't over toast, just until they turn slightly brown.

When the pasta water boils, throw in the shells and the broccoli. Boil about 6 minutes, or until pasta is al dente.

Drain pasta and broccoli, put back into the hot pan, add the walnuts, onion/garlic, and parmesan cheese. Toss to combine. Add enough salt and pepper to your liking.

This recipe is nice and light, and will definitely be on our summer menu!

Adapted from the 12 Best Foods Cookbook that I got from the library. (I changed the ingredients to cheaper & easier to find ones. Hey - I'm no gourmet...)