Pinterest strikes again. I saw Stephanie pin a menu board, and the description made me think “meh”, but at one point I finally clicked on it. The shopping list description was not really accurate at all from what I can tell, which was why I was not really interested. I have list making OCD. I don’t need help in that department. At all. I will stalk the stores a few days prior to grocery shopping to ensure I have the right prices, and then I make a spreadsheet.
I do have one problem though. Sticking to a menu plan. I manage to stick to it for a few days, and if I can get a week of actually following my menu plan I’d be shocked. Part of my problem is that I have my menu on my computer in a – prepare to be shocked – spreadsheet. David doesn’t creep around on here to find my menu plan. I’m glad he doesn’t because I don’t need him rolling his eyes at my always open SimCity Social window.
I’ve not had the proverbial testicular fortitude to try to make it until this tuna casserole. I do not claim that it’s anything similar to what someone who makes cajun dishes would make, but it did made a thickened sauce that I needed for the casserole. I’m actually going to be using the same method tonight for dinner to make another type of casserole.
Mmmm I want more now that I'm looking at the pictures.
Whew! Finally getting around to posting after the network issues and then David deciding to upgrade our computers to OS X Lion. Then there was the adventure to Lake Tahoe with the girls which landed me with what I think qualifies as the worst sunburn of my life. Despite the fact that my laptop causes me severe pain I’m editing photos and posting anyhow!
Money is tight. Story of just about anyone’s life right about now, right? We’re a bit deeper into the “tight” than ever before. David makes less money at his new job, and his new job is also about 50 miles away – one way. Despite the fact that he drives the Prius and maintains a 48 MPG average it still takes a chunk out. Insurance for the family is also taking more from his paycheck than before as he works for a small company with only about 60 people on site.
Oh and if all that wasn’t enough David is going to be going back to school in the fall taking a nearly full course load. I have someone lined up if I ever find a job that pays well enough to validate working. Bringing home $400-$500 a month does NOT qualify thus eliminating most of the jobs around here. Bouncing the girls between a baby sitter, school (for the eldest), and whichever parent isn’t working and is at home is not worth $500 to us.
So all this means that being thrifty is a top priority. Of course I also want to maintain healthy eating habits while being able to have meals simple enough to make that I’m not tempted to say “screw it, I’m getting Papa Murphy’s tonight!”. Enter the fabulous crock pot!
My friend Stephanie is a stay at home mom to three kids, and has a husband (who I’ve known since I was 15) in the Coast Guard and gone fairly often. She’s the person who talked me into begging David for a grain mill and got me into cloth diapering. So to say the least she’s pretty good at being thrifty yet still healthy. I pick her brain for ideas with regularity. A few days ago she gave me a super simple crock pot meal idea … SouthWest Chicken.
I’ve been slacking. I thought we’d be heading off on a family vacation, but David decided to postpone it to get things like taxes and home repairs done. We’ve cheated a bit, okay more than most I’m sure, but we’re slowly improving. Today I was feeling adventurous and had a pork shoulder that I got on Tuesday at Whole Foods. I found a good base for homemade BBQ sauce and a simple recipe for sandwich rolls.
Perfect out the gate, and I even fudged the recipe a bit!
For lunch today my two year old asked for “pea-ut butter jelly time” (think of the dancing banana here, yes that’s where she got it) I was going to have some too because my homemade strawberry jam is rather fabulous if I do say so myself (and so have a few others, so I know I’m not tooting my own horn here), but then I realized my dietary restrictions today include no seeds. Strawberries have seeds. Blast! So after I got my kids settled I looked into the fridge and remembered that I had wanted an egg salad sandwich at Whole Foods the other day, but they were out. Conveniently enough I had eggs, and my homemade mayo.
David’s dad used to make hamburger patties smothered in cream of mushroom soup. I on the other hand have only done it with marmite gravy. Tonight I decided to make mushroom soup to go with it. I thought it was delicious, though I always manage to feel guilty after eating creamy soups. After potato leek soup I swear I need to diet for a month, and this is the same way. :P