Friday, May 28, 2010
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Friday, May 21, 2010
We use shredded cheese a lot in this house! What can I say? We like it! So I tend to keep quite a bit on hand. But I was still having the problem of it going bad before I could use it all. Until I learned that you can freeze it.
It is actually very simple! Just throw the bag of cheese, direct from the grocery store, into the freezer. When you want to use it, pull out the flavor/kind that you want, break it up a little and use just like you would if not frozen. If you are going to use the full amount in the bag, then you can allow it to completely thaw in the fridge for a few hours before making dinner. If using from frozen, it will take a little longer to melt. So if you are using it on say a baked potato, you may have to give it a few minutes or throw it in the microwave or warm oven to help it along. I use the frozen cheese in salads I send to work with my husband. By the time he gets his lunch at work, the cheese is thawed! And we never have to deal with moldy cheese again!
Thursday, May 20, 2010
~ Meals that bring back fond memories of lost loved ones. (Swedish meatballs and butterscotch pie this week. I miss you Grandma!)
~ Going to a yard sale and buying a cast iron skillet for a dollar
~ Kombucha that turns out perfectly (google it!) :o)
~ Heirloom tomato plants (got all of ours planted!)
~ Baby teeth! ("L" got her first two teeth in 3 days! And she hasn't been super grumpy!)
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
Allow the fresh loaf of bread to cool completely on a wire rack. When it is totally cooled, place into a zip top baggie and the put it into the fridge over night. This "firms" up the bread. Then slice it into your thin slices. The bread is firm enough to slice yet still soft and yummy!
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Saturday dinner: BIG pizza. I happened to find one of those huge pizzas you can get at the grocery store on sale (it was "out of date" the next day) for $3.00! They are originally like $10. BBQ chicken. Yum!
Prep for Sunday: thaw ground turkey
Sunday lunch: Left over pizza? I am not kidding, this thing is huge! :o) Or maybe a freezer meal?
Sunday dinner: Swedish meatballs (making a double batch to freeze 1/2 for later use), mashed potatoes, cooked carrots and fresh bread. May come up with a special dessert. I need to get back into the habit of that. If all else fails, cookies and ice cream!
Prep for Monday: cook hard boiled eggs, thaw chicken breasts/thighs
Monday lunch: Tuna salad in homemade pita pockets, potato salad and hard boiled eggs
Monday dinner: Chicken tetrazini (making a single batch but freezing half for later use, one batch makes two 8x8 inch pans), peas, "daddy" potatoes and buttered bread.
Prep for Tuesday: soak beans, thaw chicken breasts
Tuesday lunch: Chicken fingers, mac and cheese, and Lima beans
Tuesday dinner: crock pot pizza beans
Prep for Wednesday: Check to see if first batch of kombucha is done!
Wednesday lunch: left over chicken fingers in pita pockets with lettuce, tomato, and honey mustard
Wednesday dinner, all meals for Thursday and Friday: Leftovers!
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 2 cups white sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa (the powdered kind)
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 2/3 cups white chocolate
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla.
- In a separate bowl, mix together flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt.
- Add dry mix into the wet mix a little at a time till all dry is used and the dough is well mixed. Fold in the white chocolate chips.
- Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto an ungreased cookie sheet, allowing for room to spread.
- Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, until cookies are set. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
The dough from the cookies freezes really well! I have some thawing on the counter right now to enjoy with some yummy raw goats milk! Mmm.
Friday, May 14, 2010
So how is this frugal? By reusing something for another purpose, it usually is frugal, not to mention Eco-friendly. It also saves you from buying fertilizer and insecticide. Once again, also Eco-friendly as it saves those nasty chemicals from leaching into the ground. Unless of course you buy organic options. Then your good either way! :o)
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
- Peanut butter (roll in the sugar before freezing)
- Chocolate chip
- Short breads
- Snicker doodles (roll in cinnamon/sugar before freezing)
- Chocolate white chocolate chip (pictured above)
When it comes time to bake the cookie: Take out how ever many you want, place on a lightly greased cookie sheet (unless the recipe calls for it not to be greased,) allow to thaw for about 20 minutes and bake like normal! *You may have to increase the bake time by a minute or two. Bake for normal time and then check for doneness.*
This also allows couples or families with just a few children not to have to bake an entire batch of cookies. Instead, you can make up the whole batch and only bake what you need right then. We usually bake 4 to 6 cookies at a time. This also makes for a great last minute dessert when unexpected company arrives for dinner!
Monday, May 10, 2010
Ok, so back to the book. I borrowed it from the library but now that I've read it, I know it is one that I would love to own. It tells the history of the family, how they got started with just Michelle and Jim Bob and how that family progressed into the large Christian family they are today.
I look up to them for a lot of reasons. They are faithfully following God's decree to them to allow Him to choose the number of children they have. They are raising those children in the way they see fit, not allowing the worlds views to effect what they know to be right for their family. They are home schooling ALL those kids. I have no idea how she does it! :o) And they are doing it all debt free!
I learned alot in reading this book. It was very informative and well written. There are lots of great recipes and teaching techniques and there are many resources in the back of the book that I intend to look into.
All in all, I would say it was a great read and would recommend it to any one interested in large families, raising God fearing children, frugality, household management, or just anyone looking for a clean, wholesome read.
Other books I have been reading recently include:
Miserly Moms (loved this book! Lots of great ideas on how to live on one income in a two income world.)
Wise woman herbal for the child bearing years (a great resource for safe, natural remedies before and during pregnancy, for birth support and while breastfeeding)
The Doll in the Garden (a childhood favorite of my sister and I's that I just happened to rediscover again.
Saturday, May 8, 2010
- 3 cups fresh asparagus, trimmed (this is about one good sized bundle at the grocery store)
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup butter, softened/room temperature
- 1/2 cup grated cheese
- 1 cup bread crumbs
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Put all the asparagus (reserving a few tips for garnish) into a greased 8x8 casserole dish.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, milk and butter then pour over the asparagus.
- Sprinkle with the cheese and then the bread crumbs. Dress with asparagus tips.
- Brown at 425'F for 20 minutes till asparagus is tender but not mushy.
Makes approximately 4-5 servings.
Saturday dinner: Lemon garlic drumsticks, creamed spinach, and corn
Sunday lunch: Tuna salad in home made pita pockets, cottage cheese, and hard boiled eggs and probably a fruit
Sunday dinner: Roast chicken with potatoes, lemon and asparagus, served with brown rice
Monday lunch: Beef taco skillet and salad
Monday dinner: Chicken enchiladas (making a double batch to have an extra batch to put in the freezer)
Tuesday lunch: Tacos and blue corn tortilla chips with salsa
Tuesday dinner: Crock pot Lima bean casserole
Wednesday lunch: Baked potatoes with broccoli and cheese
Friday, May 7, 2010
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
In my regular hand soap pump, I keep a mix of 1/2 hand soap and 1/2 dish soap for scrubbing my dirty kitchen hands. You get the power and grease fighting of the dish soap and the smell and softness of the hand soap all in one! Just pour about equal parts of each into the soap bottle, replace the pump and shake for a minute or so.
This mix also works great on my husband's hands after he has been working on the cars!
Monday, May 3, 2010
Well, this is actually something that I had never heard of until after our little "L" was born. I always thought that once she out grew the infant car seat that she would be put into a forward facing car seat and that's just how it was. So when I heard the words "extended rear-facing" I was intrigued.
After much research, talking to parents who choose to extend rear-facing their children and seeing video of how a child's body reacts in a typical car crash, I was convinced.
Typically, an infant is kept in a rear-facing car seat (usually one that has a base and carrying handle) until they are 20-25 pounds or 1 year of age. This has been the "norm" for a long time. Well, new research (this is just one of many studies) is showing that extending the time a child is rear-facing for as long as possible is actually safer and causes less injuries and deaths. This extension is done by placing a child into a rear-facing convertible car seat after they have out grown their rear-facing infant car seat or starting them in one to begin with.
There are now many models of extended rear-facing car seats of choose from. They range in price from $120 to upwards of $400. We have found a great one that is rear-facing from 5 to 40 pounds then turns forward-facing up to 65 pounds for about $140 (look on Wal*marts website for this price.) This will mean "L" will be rear-facing till she is 3 to 4 years old (unless she out grows it in height first) and then turn forward-facing, in the same seat, till she is ready for a booster seat.
Here is a great sight for more information on the benefits of extended rear-facing. Please, look over the whole site, it's a good one! And here are the recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics on child safety seats.
So, that is why we are choosing to do this. We may be called weired (wouldn't be the first time, won't be the last) but I will feel good knowing that my child is in the safest place possible when we are out and about!
Saturday, May 1, 2010
Saturday dinner: taco salad
Sunday lunch: Italian chicken pasta
Sunday dinner: Pizza pasta pie and garlic bread
Monday lunch: picnic at the park with Daddy) toasted tuna salad sandwiches, cottage cheese, deviled eggs
Monday dinner: baked salmon, hard boiled eggs (mashed with butter on top), green beans, and fried potatoes
Tuesday lunch: baked potatoes and salad
Tuesday dinner: baked chicken, scalloped asparagus, and Lima beans
Wednesday lunch: chicken chunks, homemade mac & cheese, and peas
Wednesday dinner- Friday Dinner: leftovers
- 1 pound smoked sausage, cut into 1/4 inch slices
- 1 small onion, chopped (about 1/4 cup)
- 1 tsp. garlic powder (or garlic salt, we just watch our salt intake)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 can (14.5 oz.) stewed tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (15 to 16 oz.) kidney beans, undrained
- 2 cups biscuit mix (store bought or homemade)
- 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 1 cup milk
- 2 eggs
- Heat oven to 350'F. Spray a 10-inch skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Cook sausage and onion in skillet for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender. Spoon into ungreased 9x9 or 8x8 inch baking dish. Stir in garlic salt, chili powder, tomatoes and beans.
- In a medium bowl, stir together the remaining ingredients until blended. Pour over sausage mixture.
- Bake uncovered 35 to 40 minutes or until crust is light golden brown.
Notes: There was quite a bit of liquid when it was finish cooking, though later the leftovers were less moist as some of the liquid was absorbed into the mixture. Next time I might drain a little of the juice off the tomatoes or beans. Also, the "pour over sausage mixture" is a joke. It is way to thick to pour! Instead, you have to spoon it on in lumps all over the top and then kind of spread it out. It will pretty well even out when it is baked. I also cut the sausage into smaller pieces. I cut it in half length wise and then sliced it into 1/4 inch thick pieces. I also used a little less than a pound and we didn't miss it. Between the beans and the sausage, I figured it was plenty of protein!
Makes 6-8 servings. Serve with green beans, a side salad or just by itself. Either way, it was quite tasty!