Monday, April 30, 2012

Menu Planning in Reverse

This week was the week for CABBAGE! Cabbage is such a versatile vegetable and one cabbage can go a long way! On a recent trip to the grocery store, when I scanned my store card at the kiosk, I received a coupon for $1.00 off $5.00 worth of produce. I felt I should use the coupon since produce coupons are few and far between. With my coupon I purchased a cabbage, celery, carrots and bananas.

  Another highlight from my cooking this week was this peach cobbler made from canned peaches:



Here are some meals from this past week:

Meal One: BBQed chicken breasts, cabbage cooked with ham bits, field peas, noodles. The chicken was from the freezer bought when it was 99 cents a pound. The peas were in the freezer from last summer. The cabbage was bought with the coupon.

Meal Two: A family size frozen lasagna. This was bought on sale for $5.99, less a $2.00 coupon. It might not be as good as home made lasagna, but you can't beat the price. Making homemade lasagna is pricey since it contains so much cheese. For the two of us this lasagna was more than enough for a meal and there were leftovers for lunches. There were left over veggies that went well with it also.

Meal Three: Sloppy Joes and Slaw. I love Manwhich sloppy joes and the cans were on sale for a dollar each. Ground chuck was on sale for $1.99 a pound. I used some more of the cabbage to make the slaw. I also bought hamburger buns on sale and with a coupon. This made a hearty meal and again there were leftovers for lunches.

Meal Four: Cabbage Soup. This was absolutely delicious. I had some cabbage pieces left that wouldn't shred when I was making the slaw. Instead of throwing them out I put them back in the fridge just in case I came up with another use for them. Saturday I decided to throw them in the crockpot with a few other veggies bought with the coupon as well as tomatoes from the freezer. The ingredients included celery, onion, cabbage, tomatoes and about 1/2 pound of browned hamburger. We loved this and will be making it in the future. The thing that makes cabbage soup so delicious is using plenty of black pepper.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Crafty Things


My friend Terri at HEARTS IN SERVICE is hosting a linky today called Crafty Things. She would love for you to link to posts about any crafty things you have been up to.

I've been working on the free motion machine quilting of this quilt. It needs it to be finished by next Friday which is graduation day for the recipient! Not sure if that will happen, but I'll keep plodding along....

The back:


Some of the progress on the front:




I'm not too sure about the new blogger!  How about you?

Happy Friday!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Frugal Eating From the Pantry - Week 2

I guess you could call this Menu Planning in reverse! Here's what we ate this past week. We are continuing on with eating from the pantry and freezer.

Meal One: I often try to cook home made meals for my mother to eat in the nursing home. So, last Sunday while I lay in bed before day, I thought about what I could cook and decided to cook just what Mama would have cooked if she were able. For many years we ate almost every Sunday dinner at my mother's, along with other siblings and their children. She always, always, managed to go to church and put a huge meal on the table.

Fried chicken, potato salad, butter beans, bow tie pasta cooked in chicken broth, dressing. We ate this for two days, including some lunches for work.

Meals Two, Three and Four:

There was a large bag of boiled chicken in the freezer that I had planned to use in a chicken casserole or pot pie. Since we have been concentrating on using what is in the freezer, this was the only meat we had left. I placed it on a plate in the fridge to thaw and when I got home Tuesday night I heated the chicken in a frying pan by sauteing it in a little olive oil.

From this is I made: 1. Chicken Fried Rice; 2. Green salads with chicken; 3. chicken salad.

Meal Five: Ok, enough chicken!!! I splurged at the grocery store and picked up 2 small chuck eye steaks for about $5.00, which hubby browned in a frying pan. We had salad and baked potatoes with the steaks. This was WAY less expensive than going out to eat and was delicious.


EXTRA: I made pound cakes Friday night.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Frugal Strawberries



My hubby has access to free strawberries. The reason for this is that they aren't quite good enough for the market or are too ripe, etc.

If these are the culls..... we'll take em!

Strawberries are a great food to put in the freezer, especially when they are free.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

FRUGAL EATING FROM THE PANTRY



This is the second week that we have been focusing on eating from the pantry, freezer and also from what is on sale at the store. I'm not too good at posting my menus in advance, but thought it would be good to show what we ate during the past week.

Meal One: Chicken pot pie and noodles.

Everything in the recipe was in my pantry and freezer. The results are a creamy white meat chicken with veggies covered by a lightly browned crust. I had split chicken breasts in the freezer bought when they were on sale. The egg noodles were cooked in the broth made when I boiled the chicken for the pot pie.

We ate from these dishes for 2 days, as well as taking my mother a plate when she was in the hospital.



Meal Two: Lasagna and salad

I thawed a small package of ground beef and put together the lasagna last Sunday afternoon, but waited to bake it after getting home from work on Monday.

We had some lettuce in the fridge and so I boiled a couple of eggs and gathered together things that would be good in salad, such as grated cheese, onion, canned peach slices, and dressing.

We also ate from this for 2 days and hubby took some for lunch 2 days.



Meal Three: Baked Potato Bar

I had plenty of potatoes, so I baked 4 medium ones in the microwave and assembled assorted toppings such as bacon bits, grated cheeses, sour cream and butter.

I had some broccoli in the freezer, so I cooked a small amount and melted cheese on top of it for broccoli and cheese baked potatoes.

It was nice to have such an easy meal and hubby took one of the potatoes with broccoli and cheese for lunch the following day.



Meal Four: Clam Chowder with crackers

We had a cold snap this week, so we took advantage of it by eating clam chowder for what will probably be the last time until fall.

I did need to pick up a small can of clams and another can of clam chowder, to which I added milk and diced boiled potatoes. We had crackers in the pantry.

Hubby was able to take a bowl for lunch the following day.

Meal Five: Pork Chops and salad

I went to the grocery store on Friday and found a small package of boneless pork chops for about $5.00. We pan fried half of these in olive oil and froze the rest for a future meal. I also bought a bag of salad that was on sale for $2.00, less a $1.00 coupon that I had. There is enough salad in the bag for several meals this coming week.

We've already started eating from the pantry, freezer and what's on sale this week and let me tell you today's food was wonderful! A little hint, it was just like Mama used to make. I plan to post what we ate this week next Monday.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Crafty Things


My friend Terri at HEARTS IN SERVICE is hosting a linky today called Crafty Things. She would love for you to link to posts about any crafty things you have been up to.

And you know me! I'm not one to pass up an opportunity show things I have been working on, so here goes:

I have to put the final border on the long sides of this quilt top and it will be finished and ready for pin basting. I've shared this on my quilting blog already, but this quilt is for my step-son's college graduation gift and is made from his shirts and other fabrics purchased to coordinate with them.

I hope to do that pin basting job this weekend, but work in the yard is calling me as well as other obligations, so we will see how that goes!



Someone or some group made small neck pillows for the dialysis patients and my mother love hers. Sadly, it got damaged during her recent hospital stay, so I tried to duplicate it. I laid it on a piece of newspaper and traced around it. I made this "rough draft" in a hurry last night to see how it fit her neck. If it works I'll trade this one for the damaged one and bring it home to repair.



I made another Thomas and Friends travel play mat for my Etsy Shop.




Thanks Terri!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

April

Good Morning!

April 10, 2012 is here already!

Local North Carolina Strawberries are ready much earlier than usual. These luscious beauties were picked a week ago. My hubby has been prepping them and freezing them, as well as feeding them to me, accompanied by vanilla ice cream and angel food cake.



These flowers are an old fashioned flower whose real name is Spiderwort, but I've heard it called frog eyes. My aunt called it the cemetery flower because that's where we got our plants that now happily grow in our yards. Their flowers open early in the morning, late in the afternoon and during cloudy days. Hot, bright sunlight makes them close up, until the next morning.



Dianthus or Sweet William? Or maybe its known by both names. This one bloomed a little all winter and has started blooming in full gear now.



The farmers haven't started working in the field behind our house yet and it looks like a beautiful meadow. I'm wondering what will be planted back there this year. Its the third growing season that we've lived here. The first year there were sweet potatoes. We were able to glean the leftover ones after harvest season. The second year there was cotton. I loved having the back 40 looking like cotton.

The Meadow:




Monday, April 9, 2012

Sunshine

One of my favorite things is seeing the sunlight stream into my sewing room in the mornings. Most of the time I have to leave the house just when that sun is beginning to make itself known.

Saturday morning I was home and the sun was shining as I worked on this quilt. I was putting on a border and pressing the back of the quilt.



Spray starch and a lint roller are my high tech quilting tools that always sit near the ironing board.



I need to do some work organizing and cleaning up the dust bunnies in there! I moved all the plants that had been spending the winter inside outside last week. Plants make a mess sometimes! I am not going to bring so many back inside next fall. I've got to find homes for some my aloe plants. They multiply so fast.





If I miss the morning sunshine on the east side of the house, I can catch it later in the day on the west side.



I hope the sun shines on you today!

Visit my Homemaking Dreams Etsy Shop for handmade items.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Happy Birthday to Mama and Jacob!

My mother turned 87 Friday. We had a big celebration at the nursing home in a reserved room.

Here are a couple of her gifts that you can see looking out her window in the nursing home. After the party she said she needed to get back to her hotel room. Trust me its not as fun as being in a hotel, but at least she has a sense of humor.

She continues to have set backs that prevent her from going home.



My sister in law made this cake:



My son, Jacob, turns 25 today! I gave him the Jacob's Ladder quilt that I finished up about a month ago.



This label probably is a little embarrassing to him, but one day he will look back on it and know that I loved him.

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