Monday, July 20, 2009

Rise and Shine

Good morning and happy Monday to you all. Today brings with it the menu for the week. Isn't it funny that I started this blog to chronicle life on one budget and the reality of being a full time at home mom, but I seem to be posting about food very frequently...hummmm? You know we begin life as moms working so hard to make sure our babies are nursing correctly and for long enough, we worry about our children's progress on the growth charts at every check up, and then we begin the battle are around two years old over what they will with that in mind maybe I shouldn't be surprised at all that the blog centers around food if it is meant to center around motherhood! That said I wanted to post a recipe for mulit-grain banana pancakes that my oldest son has fallen in love with. They pack quite the punch nutritionally and he wakes up every morning, for the last 8 mornings at least, asking for them. If you have picky eaters or company (maybe both) you should give them a try. Here is the how to:


1 cup uncooked rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons dry milk powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
2 cups milk
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 banana, mashed
1.Place the rolled oats into the jar of a blender and blend until the texture resembles coarse flour. Whisk together the blended oats, whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, brown sugar, dry milk powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl; set aside.
2.Whisk together the egg, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla. Stir in the mashed banana. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir just until moistened. Let the batter stand for 5 minutes.
3. Heat a lightly oiled griddle over medium-high heat. Drop batter by large spoonfuls onto the griddle, and cook until bubbles form and the edges are dry, about 2 minutes. Flip, and cook until browned on the other side. Repeat with remaining batter.

As for the rest of the week we'll be having pancakes for breakfast or french toast. For lunch we'll be eating chicken nuggets or left overs from the previous night's dinner. Finally for dinner we'll be eating the following:

Monday: Beef Stroganoff, green beans, and frozen fruit

Tuesday: Chicken Rice A Roni and broccoli

Wednesday: Grilled burgers and fries

Thursday: Chicken Pot Pie

Friday: Left overs

Saturday: Beef and Chicken Fajitas, Beans, and Rice

Sunday: Fend for's taking the day off

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Chicken Nugget Success!

Wow where has the last week gone? I'm sorry I haven't posted, but my cleaning spree began on Friday and before I knew what hit me it was Thursday again! There have been few new developments over the last week, but it is worth reporting that the chicken nugget experiment was a huge success. I found boneless skinless chicken breasts for $0.99lb (thanks Marnie) at HEB last week. I used 6 pounds of this chicken cut into bite sized pieces. I followed the recipe I posted on the blog last week. All in all it took me just over an hour to bread and cook all of the nuggets. I put them onto a metal cookie sheet in the deep freezer over night and then into a freezer zip lock the next day. I now have enough nuggets frozen to feed my boys for at least a month for just over $6.00!
My boys have been asking for these nuggest and they taste wonderful when reheated. I feel so much better about feeding these to my crew since they are made with 100% whole wheat flour, flax seed, no salt, and no preservatives. I can't recommend these nuggets strongly enough if you have little chicken nugget addicts in you household. Please post and let me know if you try them and how they work out for your crew.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Holy Cow!!!!

So before you continue to read today's post please know that the information that I'm about to share with you could lead to a full fledged cleaning read at your own risk. Now that the leagal issues are out of the way let me tell about the most WONDERFUL cleaner I've ever used. I read about this all natural, biodegradble, non toxic, cruelty free cleaner on The Hillibilly Housewife's blog a few days ago and she seemed to love it so much that I went out to buy some myself.

The cleaner is sold at Wal-Mart, Walgreens, Bed, Bath, and Beyond, Ace, and True Value and on-line at and I paid 5.95 for each of the bottles above. The Green is the concentrated cleaner, the pink general cleaner, and the blue glass cleaner. I began to clean with them as soon as I got home and I have just now be able to stop ... 5 hours later!!

The pink cleaner was able to totally clean all of my carpets. I just used it and a large scrub brush and in less than 40 minutes I had removed every stain from our family room and entry way. Just let me remind you that I have 2 little boys, 1 husband, 1 labradore, and my less than graceful self which all add up to one very stained carpet. I used different combinations of the cleaner in my kitchen. My counters are cleaner than they have ever been even with straight bleach! They feel great ... no residue. My stove look brand new and it is a 25 year old builder's grade appliance. My sink is so shiny that even the fly lady would be envoius. And the rest of the kitchen is following suite.

I wish I had thought in advance and taken tons of before and after picts. but alas I didn't. I got the idea when I was almost done so I just have picts of my beloved canisters. These belonged to my grandmother all of my life and are more than 40 years old I know. They are what I used as my Nana was teaching me to bake and I love them very much. Over the past 7 years I have tried everything to get them to shine, and nothing worked until today. Now my beautiful canisters shine like they did in my childhood. I will be researching ways to safely dispose of ALL my other cleaners once I'm done with this post. I am so excited to have something that works so well, is safe for my family, and won't take up all the space under my sink!!! Seriously go and get yours today!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Thrifty Thursday - Grocery Finds

Here's what I'm buying at Randall's/Safeway/TomThumb this week:

Lucerne 18 ct Large Eggs - $.99 with coupon from this week's add - limit one with card Friday,

Saturday, Sunday only with $20 purchase

Chinet plates or cups $2.50 use $1 off Classic white HERE = $1.50

Charmin Ultra - 6 mega / 12 super rolls use .25 cents off from 7/5 P & G and .25 cents off

e saver = $4.49

I'm buying 3 so we'll be set for TP until next sale

Colgate Toothpaste - $2.49 use $.75/1 final price 1.74 (not a great deal,but need toothpaste)

Blue Ribbon or Jimmy Dean Bacon BOGO - should be around $1.99 each

I'm buying 10 packs because we love bacon and it COSTS

Total cost - 19.99

Total Cost = $37.69

Kroger Deals This Week:

Kroger Value Boneless Chicken Breast or Tenders - $1.99lb

I'll be buying 5 lbs of tenders (for chicken nuggets) and 5 lbs to marinate

Total cost - $19.99

Springdale Milk $1.99 - not on sale, but we need milk. I'll buy one gallon

Total cost - $1.99

Downey $4.99 - Use $1/1 from RP 6/28 - final cost 3.99 - I'll buy two one for us one "scent free"

for baby girl

Total Cost $7.98

Dr. Pepper - 5 for $5 -

Total Cost $5.00

Pampers Jumbo Pack - $8.99 use $2/1 from P&G 7/5 - final cost $6.99 I'll buy two packs

Total Cost $13.98

Total Kroger Cost - 48.94

I'll have to pick up some other things that I don't have prices for so I'll have to give you the final costs when I post my exact spending on Sunday. If you find some great deals in the meantime please comment here so that we can all cash in on your knowledge.

Super Target Thursday and Other Great Deals

I wanted to let you all in on some super deals at Target this week. I frequently visit the Stretching A Buck blog at to find super Target Deals.You can also find tons of info at A Full Cup You have to join, but it is free and worth it! I'll list the Target deals that I'll be headed out to get, but check the site for yourself to find tons more...even some free items!


Kashi Crackers (10 oz) - $2.50/ea

Use $1.50/1 when you sign up here (print 2)

Final Price = $0.50/ea when you buy 2

Olay Body Wash (18 or 24 oz) - $4.99/ea

Use $2/1 in 7/5 P&G insert

Final Price = $2.99/ea

Rayovac Batteries (2-4 ct) - $1/ea (found in $1 spot)

Use $1/1 in 6/21 Smart Source insert

Final Price = FREE

Degree for Women Fine Fragrance Deodorant or Body Mist - $3.29/ea

Use $2/1 Target coupon here


Use $1.25/1 in 5/16 Red Plum insert

Final Price = $0.04/ea

Bare Solo Cups and Plates - $1.50/ea

Use $1/1 coupon here or $0.75/1 coupon here

Final Price = $0.50-0.75/ea

Pictureka Card Game - $6.64/ea

Use $5/1 here

Final Price = $1.64/ea
Happy Targeting and have a great day.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Time for Tea, But Not Enough Time To Double Check

Our day has been uneventful. We were expecting company, but the plans changed so to help the kids still have fun I decided to have tea time. The boys have been doing this with my parents for some time and love it. I also grew up with my great-grandmother and our tea parties so I love passing this tradition along to my crew.

Today I decided to make tea time extra special with the addition of home made English tea cakes. The boys came in and "helped" me make them. I was using a recipe that I had never used before so the waters were already unclear as we set off on this baking adventure. When you add one crying baby, and two busy boys you in effect have, the perfect storm! We mixed everything together, or so I thought, and I double checked the recipe to make sure I didn't forget any liquid because the dough was like sand. Nope, no liquid called for so ahead we went. We shaped the cookies and baked them. I had hoped that once the butter began to melt they would stick together and turn into cookies.

I took the cookies out of the oven and it was just then that it hit me....I had put two sticks, not two cups, of butter into the batter. Suddenly I had two very let down boys on my hands. We survived because the cookies came out of the pan and we were able to have our tea party after all. I am sure; however, that we would have enjoyed the sweets more if they had contained said amount of butter. Gman assured me that it was ok even if I made a mistake cause they were still cookies after all.

We Don't Like Eggs

Good morning to all. Today brought another challenge...scrambled eggs for breakfast!!!! Gman woke up very hungry this morning and started asking for food right away. I invited him to help me prepare the eggs. He helped me, but wasn't any too happy about it. We cooked to eggs with salt and butter, kid friendly right? Wrong! After much protest both boys tasted the eggs, gaged, and spit them onto their plates. The deal I made was to taste the eggs and you could then have one frozen eggo. It may sound strange, but I've found that if I can just get the boys to taste new foods they generally go on to like them. Today I struck out, but there is always another day. I've read tons about picky eaters and the consensus seems to be that the children need multiple exposures before they incorporate a new food into their diets. The plan around our place to introduce one week of new foods (this week) and then each person in the family will get to choose one meal a day to put on our menu for the week. It should look something like this:

Day: Break: Dinner:

Mon. Gman: Daddy

Tues. Mommy: Zman

Wed. Daddy: Gman

Thurs. Zman: Mommy

Fri. Gman: Daddy

Sat. Mommy: Zman

Sun. Daddy: Gman

Hopefully we'll find some new foods that the kids like before school starts.