Learn how to


Weekly Menu Plan 3/31-4/7

Mon Scrambled Eggs, Fried Country Sausage
Tues Baked Ziti
Wed Ham Steaks, Baked Potatoes
Thurs Broccoli Alia Olia
Friday Letovers (boys had pizza rolls, Ramen noodles)
Saturday Roasted Chicken, Baked Potatoes, Corn
Sunday Smoked Brisket


D.E.A.R. Day

D.E.A.R. Day is April 12. The National D.E.A.R. Day partners are marking the birthday of beloved author Beverly Cleary as the official event date.

D.E.A.R. stands for Drop Everything and Read. National D.E.A.R. Day is a special reading celebration to remind and encourage families to make reading together on a daily basis a family priority.

How Can I Participate? You can attend an event in your community or request your D.E.A.R. Day Kit and participate right in your own home by reading for 30 minutes!

Click here for your D.E.A.R. DAY KIT


Why I Use Coupons

Total Out Of Pocket $4.87 (TYPO!! :() $3.87

Coupons Used: 2 $3 off any size bag Good Life Cat Food ($3.99ea)
2 FREE All Natural Temptations Cat Treat ($1.99ea)
3 FREE Purina Healthful Life Cat Food ($1.99ea)
1 2 for 1 Bonus Pack Purina Beneful Prepared Meals ($1.69ea)

A total of $21.31 worth of pet food purchased at Target.


Crock Pot Roast Burgundy

1 beef roast, about 2-3 pounds
3 cups red wine
2 tablespoons butter (to saute veggies in)
2 carrots
2 ribs celery
1 large onion
1 clove garlic
8 to 12 ounces mushrooms
3 tablespoons flour & 2 tablespoons butter
salt and pepper to taste

Marinate roast in red wine for at least an hour or more in refrigerater.

Chop carrots, celery, onion, and garlic. Saute in butter until lightly browned, then add mushrooms; cook another 2 or 3 minutes.

Place roast in the Crock Pot. Cover with the sauteed vegetables. Pour wine into the hot saute pan and bring to a boil. Pour over the beef and vegetables. Cover and cook on low 8 to 10 hours. At last 30 minutes whisk flour-butter mixture in to thicken.
Serves 4 to 6.



Have You Joined Wellness 360?


Wellness 360 is the only website that provides great wellness tools such as: - Diet and fitness tracking,- Personal health record,- Emergency medical record,- Medical and wellness library,- Free Genetic Testing, and- CASH! CASH! CASH!

Thats right: Wellness 360 pays its members CASH just for using it!
There's nothing to buy, no catch or gimmicks! Absolutely no tricks, just cash for its members.
The best question you can ask is easy: How much money can I earn?
To answer this question, follow these four simple steps:
Step 1: Lets assume you invite 10 friends to become members.
Step 2: In turn, your friends each invite 10 of their friends to become members.
Step 3: Lets assume 3 more levels of friends each invite 10 new members.
Step 4: Assuming each member earns $25 per month, Wellness 360 will pay you:
$4,052 Every Month!!!
Thats $48,628 annually for simply inviting your friends and family to Wellness 360.
Its easy to begin enjoying wellness360s services and start earning cash.
Lets begin enjoying today and putting more money in our pockets.

Click here to join: Wellness 360

CVS Clearance

Here is some info I came across on Hot Coupon World recently about clearances at CVS. When I read it I thought I had read it before, was it your AJ that originally wrote this?

Some info on the clearances at CVS....

There are two major types of clearances: AMM (automatic Markdowns) and
clearances on "Seasonal" stuff like holidays, spring items, summer items...
these are things that are not regularly carried.

This week, the seasonal markdowns just started for the Spring Items. The
Spring Items (spring flowers, storage, wind chimes, etc) SHOULD be marked
down to 50%. Next week they'll go to 75% (if the store manager doesn't push
it to get it out of there sooner... they'll mark it down earlier... its up
the the GM). They have a deadline to get "summer" set... so they may get in
a hurry to get it outta there..

Ok, AMM's.... Every year, CVS has "Plans". This is where they "rebuild" each
section of the store (shampoo/conditioners, hairstyling, shaving/deodorants,
etc..) Soon before they "rebuild" a section of the store, the system sends
down discounts on things that will no longer be included in the new "Plan".
The system is supposed to send the AMMs down on Tuesdays, but they come on
Mondays most of the time. Good store mgrs will get the AMMs started on
Mondays (these are the little tags you see hanging on the shelves in home
locations for 25%, 50%, 75% and some of them just say clearance with no
discount). These clearance deals are good until they're gone and no more
product can be ordered or will come into the stores. Coupons can be used on
these items. These items will normally go on clearance for 4 weeks... 25%
first week, 50% second week, 75% third week, and then they will go back to
just clearance with no discount. At that point, its up to the mgr to
manually mark those down and move them to the clearance end-cap. (This should
be in the back of the store on the left hand side most of the time).

In the first of the year, right after the Christmas clearances, makeup goes
on clearance. Soon after that is shampoo, hair styling/color/accessories,
soaps/body wash, lotion, deodorants, mostly health and beauty. The "other
side" of the store will come later in the year.


Size Does Matter!

Have you noticed products skimping on size but keeping the price the same to sneakily increase profits?

Brawny paper towels. 8 roll pick-a-size ones, 110 2-ply paper towels and a total area of 403.3 square feet. Now you get 88 2-ply paper towels and a total area of 322.6 square feet. So the price went up 6%, while the number and area of the paper towels on each roll decreased by 20%.

General Mills, Kellogs and Quaker Cereals decreased the size of their box of cereals, increased their prices.

Dial Soap Bars shrunk from 4.5 ounces per bar to 4 ounces.

Proctor & Gamble’s Charmin Toilet Paper has shrunk in width 1 centimeter.

Skippy Peanut Butter changed their jars from 18 ounces to 16.2 ounces for the same price.

Breyers yogurt goes from 8oz cups to 6 oz cups.

Certain Beers went to 11.2 instead of 12oz bottles and 18 packs instead of 24.

Ice Creams was 64 ounces (1/2 gallon) now mostly 56 oz.


Weekly Menu Plan 3/24-3/30

Mon Whole Roasted Chicken, Baked Potatoes
Tues Mock Country Fried Chicken Steak, Mashed Potatoes, Corn
Wed Bacon Sandwiches, Garden Salad
Thurs Chopped Beef Steak with Mushroom Gravy, Mashed Potatoes, Buttered Corn
Friday Mexican Dinner Out
Saturday Breakfast for Dinner: Waffles & Cereal
Sunday Dinner Grilled Pork Chops, Potatoes, Broccoli


Graham Cracker Cookies

I was looking in the pantry and noticed I have two opened boxes of graham crackers. I needed a quick and easy recipe to use some of them. I collect fund raiser cookbooks and they always have interesting recipes in them.

Here's a quick, minimal ingredient recipe for those grahams that I found in one of my cookbooks. Looks easy. I'll report back how they taste.

1 pkg. graham cracker
1 c. brown sugar
2 sticks butter
1 sm. (6 oz.) pkg. chocolate chips
1 c. pecans

Line graham crackers all along cookie sheet pan. Melt butter and sugar, bring to hard boil. Boil 2 min. Pour butter and sugar mixture over graham crackers. Sprinkle with pecans and chips. Put in 350 oven 3-5 minutes or until you see it bubbling good. Remove from oven. Immediately remove from pan and cool on foil.

And here's a rolled cookie recipe that also uses peanut butter that I have several FREE jars of that I've tried before. We like dipping these in chocolate that has been melted in the fondu pot.

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
3/4 cup peanut butter
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup margarine, melted

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl.
Roll into one inch balls and chill before serving. Dip in melted chocolate chips if desired.

Do you have a EASY graham cracker "cookie" recipe to share?


My CVS Deals Today


Here's how my trip to CVS turned out.
I started out with $16 in ECB's.

1st order:
2 bags of M&M's $5 minus 1 $1 off manu coupon $2 ECBS earned
3 Ladys Speed Stack $5.97 minus 3 $1 off manu coupons $3 ECBS earned
1 Maybelline Supestay lip gloss $8.99 no manu coupon $8.99 ECBS earned
2 Oral B Cross Action Toothbrushes minus 2 $1 manu coupons $9.98 ECBS earned
I used a $5/15 wellness coupon and my original $16 ECBS.
My actual cash out of pocket was $4.75

2nd order:
2 Dove Skin Vitalizers $19.98 minus 2 $3.50 manu coupons $5 ECBS earned
2 Listerine Smart Rinse $5.98 minus 2 $1 manu coupons $5.98 ECBS earned
I used another $5/15 wellness coupon and my $2 ECB earned from M&M off first order and $9.98 ECB earned from Oral B's from first order.
My actual cash out of pocket was .63 for tax.

I still have $22.97 in ECBS for next week.
How does our song go? Ka Ching for me!
It was a good day for hounding at my C V S!


My "Home Grown" Eggs

Everyone is seeing a higher cost for chickens and eggs due to the rising price of fuel and increased demand for new fuel alternatives. The average household is now paying more than $2 per dozen for eggs that a year ago averaged 99 cents.

I had contemplated getting rid of my laying hens due to the cost of feed I have to supplement them with through out the winter. Now I'm glad I didnt. My feed has went up very little compared to the amount a dozen of eggs has increased.

The experts predict in the coming months, home cooks who reach for eggs to make their favorite recipes might be surprised to see that eggs will not be offered at lower prices unless grocery stores are willing to absorb the cost.

This Easter there will not be many egg sales in stores. If anyone offers eggs below $1 as in the past, the experts think it will be tied to additional purchases or as a loss by the grocer to get customers into the store.

Development of ethanol as an alternative to oil-based gasoline has driven up the cost of the alternative's basic raw ingredient -- corn. As in any commodity, stable supply and increased demand make prices go higher.

Most consumers don't notice price increases until they reach a certain point. Once a carton of large eggs went over the $2 mark, people started paying more attention.

Before the cost of corn increased, producers had production down to a science that led to a controlled cost.

Large family and corporate farms have not had time to plant more in response to the changes in the demand for corn. According to experts, even with more corn, prices will never come back down to past levels. Although hard to predict exact figures, they predict consumers will never see the 89 cents per dozen of two years ago.

One expert, Bethel, whose company participates in Eggland production says, "By late-2008, organic eggs will see a drastic increase."

With the industry's response to animal rights activists who have promoted better hen care, companies phased in more space and more sanitary conditions which resulted in houses going from 150,000 chickens down to 120,000 with the result of less productivity.

Looking at the overall picture, the consumer needs to keep in mind that although eggs have increased in price they provide 13 essential nutrients and are a good source of protein.

For me, there's nothing better than knowing exactly what has went into the making of my "home grown" eggs.

Just look at those pretty brown eggs. And there is no comparison in taste.


Still Hounding For More Cat Food

When we bought this house almost 3 years ago we inherited a daddy and mommy cat. The day we moved in she had 6 babies. We also had two cats of our own. 4 of those 6 babies were females.

I started freaking out. My aunt also lives in the same town we do. It's a small town with no full time 24/7 animal control and there are cats EVERY WHERE. She lives within city limits, I live outside of town. She feeds approximately 20 feral cats a day. Anyway, all I could see was these babies multipling like litte bunny rabbits. I am an animal lover, but dont want my 5 acres run over with cats. They have a tendency to mess up my flower gardens and they are hell on the screens on the front of the house!

I started calling vets and quickly found that the cost was more than I could afford to get them all fixed. Then I read on line here about a program in Kansas City that would fix them and give them their shots for around $15 per cat. I called and made two appointments. One for the females and the second for the males. The waiting list is quite lengthy, but it gave me a chance to get closer to the cats so I could catch them.

The program is called No More Homeless Pets. They have around 6 different clinics around Kansas City area and require an appointment. I've also seen this program running in other states when you google "no more homeless pets". If you are needing help getting your pet spay/neutered, be sure to check your area.

The word got out what I was doing and daddy ran off before I could catch him and I see him about two miles down the road every once in a while. Two of the kittens (of course full grown now) have disappeared since being fixed. So we only have mamma and two of the kittens left. The ferrals are so cute, they will sit on the deck railing looking into the house through the window. They arent so ferral now after two years of feeding and attention.

Feeding 3 outdoor cats and two indoor cats plus 2 miniature poodles, 1 black lab, and 1 bassett hound we rescued can get quite expensive. So I am always hounding for cat & dog food and litter.
Meet Peanut, my indoor cat who loves to go outside in the spring.

And here's Lilly, who I've never been able to break of climbing the Christmas tree. Her and Peanut are sisters believe it or not that I rescued from a farm.

This is Lucky, my 120 pound lap dog!

This one is Teddy, he has to be the smartest dog in the world.

Francis, The Typical Bassett

And the baby of the family, Suzy.


What would you do?

Let's play "What would you do?"

I bought a corn beef (on sale for $1.29lb= $4.33) and cooked it yesterday with red potatoes ($1.25) and cabbage ($0.25) for St Patty's day. Boy wonder doesnt like corn beef, therefore it's just my hubby and I that ate it. There was quite a bit left over. Hubby wanted Rueben sandwiches. I had to buy (and here is where the pain sets in) a can of saurkraut ($1.24) and a loaf of Rye bread ($3.04). The ONLY time we eat Rye bread is for rueben sandwiches. So the jest of this is the total bill for the two dinners for two people came to $10.11.

What would you have done different? Would you freeze the bread to get more for your money? How long will the bread keep frozen?

Pioneer Woman's Apple Dumplings

Do you love apple dumplings, but hate making them? Me too! But Pioneer Woman has posted her stolen recipe for all of us to cook up and enjoy!

It is so easy, it's illegal. ONLY 7 ingredients. ONLY 2 apples! If you want a lovely pictorial lesson in preparing these evil treats, then leave right now and go to her place. The woman is not only a wonderful cook, but an excellent photographer!

Here's the bare bones, no frills recipe.

Apple Dumplings

2 Granny Smith apples (I've even used a can of applie pie filling!)
2 cans crescent rolls
2 sticks butter
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoons vanilla
1 small can Mountain Dew

Peel and core apples. Cut apples into 8 slices each. Roll each apple slice in a crescent roll. Place in a 9 x 13 buttered pan. Melt butter, then add sugar and barely stir. Add vanilla, stir, and pour over apples. Pour Mountain Dew around the edges of the pan. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Serve with ice cream, and spoon some of the sweet sauces from the pan over the top.

Then go to confession. Quickly.

Pioneer Woman


Happy St Patricks Day

My crockpot is loaded with the traditional St Patricks Day dinner: red potatoes, cabbage and a corned beef for dinner.

What are you having for dinner? Do you have the traditional St Pattys dinner?


My Deals This Week

This week I had several good deals, but three REALLY EXCITING DEALS!
Office Depot- Digital Frame $39.99, after coupon $0.0 OOP
Local Grocer- Good Life Cat Food 5 bags $18.45, after coupons $0.45 OOP
CVS- Cordless Telephone $29.99/Sunkist Jelly Beans 2/$3, after gift card $0.0 OOP
Total of all merchandise= $91.43
Total Out Of Pocket for the three deals= $0.45!!!!

Here's how it worked out:

Office Depot-FREE Digital Photo Frame Value 39.99 This little photo frame has 8mb memory holding up to 56 pictures. I received it free from my office supply order at work. It will be great sitting on my desk loaded with photos of hubby, 2 sons and grandson! I love FREE!

My home phone died. It was one of those systems that had two cordless handsets, which was great because my kitchen phone jack is dead too. The cvs add came out and they had a system on sale just like mine only a different brand. Being a hounder I was racking my brain trying to figure out how I could get it free. I only had $16 worth of ecb's. Then it dawned on me, my son needed a prescription refilled. Someone had posted some where on this wonderful venue called the world wide web (sorry I dont remember who or where) that if you signed up (for free) for an account with Wellness 360 and print off your id card it would also print off a CVS coupon for a FREE $30 gift card when you transferred a prescription. So I flew over, signed up, and printed off my id card and sure enough there was the coupon for a $30 FREE gift card with a transferred prescription!
This purchase of the phone and 2 bags of Sunkist Jelly Beans cost $28.85 which I used my FREE gift card on. So it cost me $00 out of pocket!

We have five cats. Two indoors and 3 outdoors. Cat food gets to be expensive. The indoor cats are picky-picky about what they eat. At my local grocer I noticed that they had Good Life Cat food marked for $2.69 per bag. I had 6 coupons for $3 off and 2 for a $1 off. I purchased 5 bags, used 4 $3 off and 1 $1 off coupons. My OOP was $0.45 plus tax! Not free BUT a very exciting deal to pull off none the less!


Weekly Menu Plan 3/17-3/23

Mon Corned Beef, Cabbage, Red Potatoes
Tues Grilled Rueben Sandwiches
Wed Creamed Eggs & Toast
Thurs Baked Ziti
Friday Burritos
Saturday Roasted Chicken, Potatoes, Carrots
Sunday Dinner at Moms


I Have Spring Fever

It was sunny and 80 degrees here yesterday. Today it was 60, with the temps dropping to 40 by nightfall. Days like yesterday give me spring fever bad.

I miss the tranquil sounds of the water trickling over the rocks on my koi ponds. I love spying a new resident who has made the ponds their home.

This 800 gallon koi pond is at the front of my home. My husband hand dug it. We dumpster dived a roofing company's dumpster for the liner. FREE liners saves LOTS of money. The padding under the liner is carpet my hubby dumpster dived from a carpet store. Another freebie. The filter I made from some kind of milking tub that dairy farms use, pvc pipe and fittings. I found the tub at work from a dumpster so it was FREE too. The material in the tub for filteration is big round scrubbing pads for a floor buffer that I found at a thrift store for $2. We went to a friends farm and dug the rocks up. I bought the pump new for $70. Three years ago, right after we got the pond done, hubby took me to a fish farm and I bought my koi.

Here's photos of the frog and dragon fly who moved in last year. The dragon fly would let me get so close to him before flyting to a new perching place.


Wacky Cake

This is an old family favorite. It is quick and easy. The big thing I like about this recipe is there is no extra dishes to wash. It's all mixed right in the pan you bake in. I like to add the oil to my pan first, tilting the pan back and forth to be sure to spread the oil. Then I add the rest of the ingredients, stirring as I go along.

Most cake recipes have eggs in them. This recipe has no eggs and therefore is a good choice for any Vegan's Birthday.

Wacky Cake
From Kitty Hoover

2/3 c oil
½ c cocoa
3 c flour
2 c sugar
2 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 Tbl vinegar
2 tsp vanilla
2 c cold water
1 c nuts

Mix all in ungreased/unfloured pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes. Cool then frost.


Easy Thai Noodles N Chicken

1/4 c. packed brown sugar
1/4 c. peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)
1/4 c. soy sauce
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 c. dry bread crumbs
3 packages chicken Ramen Noodles
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 Tbl. olive oil
1 can bean sprouts

In a small bowl, combine brown sugar, peanut butter, soy sauce, and garlic. Set aside.
In a large ziplock bag, combine bread crumbs and 2 packets noodles seasonings.
Add chicken one piece at a time, shake to coat.
In a large skillet, cook chicken in oil over medium heat 5-6 minutes on each side until juice runs clear.
Meanwhile, cook noodles according to package directions.
Remove chicken and keep warm.
Add peanut mix to skillet, cook and stir until heated through.
Drain noodles. Add noodles and bean sprouts to skillet, toss to coat.
Plate noodles topping with chicken.

Weekly Menu Plan 3/10-3/16

Mon Goulash
Tues Ham & Cheese Omelettes
Wed Quick & Easy Thai Noodles & Chicken
Thurs Macaroni n Cheese, Polish Sausage
Friday Grilled Sandwiches
Saturday Leftovers
Sunday Crock Pot Roast, Potatoes, Carrots Smoked Turkey, Cabbage, Potatoes

My Goulash

2 small cans of tomato sauce
12 oz large elbows
1 lb hamburger
1 tsp sugar
1 Tblsp Oregano
1 1/2 Tblsp Basil

Fry hamburger while boiling elbows. Drain both. Mix tomato sauce and all seasonings in pan and heat until bubbly hot, reduce heat to low and stir in mac and hamburger. Cook on low until hot.


Do you throw away your Apple peelings & cores?

What did you do with your apple peelings and cores the last time you made a pie, tart, applesauce or apple butter?

Did you throw them away? SHAME ON YOU!

There are several things you can do with apple/pear cores and peelings.

Next time throw them in a pot and make some apple jelly! This is my favorite way to get the most for my money. Did you know that the most pectin (the stuff that makes jelly set up) is found in the peelings of the fruit and near the core. Apples that are tart and a bit under-ripe make the best jelly.

Apple Jelly

15-20 medium cores and the peelings from them
6 cups water
1(1 3/4ounce) box dry pectin
7 cups sugar

Cook peelings and cores in 6 cups water for 10-20 minutes. Strain through sieve,cheesecloth or jelly bag. Add water (or apple juice) to strained juice to obtain 7 cups liquid. (You want 1 cup of juice for every 1 cup of sugar you will add) Add pectin (whisk works well) and bring to a rapid boil. Add sugar, boil hard for 2 minutes.
You can add a handful of cinammon red hot candies to give it a gorgeous amber color and just a hint of spice.
Pour into sterile jars, leaving 1/8" headspace; wipe jar rims, adjust lids and rings; water bath 5 minutes.
IF for some reason your jelly doesn’t set up, it is a wonderful pancake/waffle syrup. But I have faith in you, this is very easy to make and you will love it. It looks so pretty and home-made. Great to give as gifts.


Food Storage Hints & Tips

I have laying hens and during the summer the eggs start piling up. I started thinking how I could preserve the eggs. I've learned to train myself and ask WWGGGD?

Translation: how would my great great grandmother have done it years ago when there was no stores close by to run to everyday. I knew you could pickle them various ways but they wouldnt be good for baking or breakfast.

Then a friend suggested freezing them. I never thought of that! When I did some research on freezing eggs I found that you could freeze so much more than meat and icecream.

Since, there has been various questions on the grocery challenge regarding if you could freeze butter, milk, cheeses, sour cream, tomatoes, etc. That way when you find a rock bottom sale on something AND you have coupons for it, you can purchase a good stock of it without the worry of it going out of date before using it.

I found two sites in my research I refer to that has a lot of good information on food storage that I want to share with you guys.

How to Freeze Almost Anything

Ball's Website

Check them out and remember, stockpiling isnt just about getting a bunch of products on sale. It also entails how to properly store them to get the most from them so the money you have saved when buying doesnt go down the drain once you get home.

Sweetened Condensed Milk

Here is a recipe for sweetened Condensed Milk, something I never seem to have on hand when I need it.

1 c powdered milk
1/3 c boiling water
2/3 c sugar
2 or 3 Tbsp margarine or butter

Whirl all ingredients in blender until sugar is dissolved. If too thick, thin with a dribble of water. This is about the same amount as one can of purchased milk.

**note: I've not tried this recipe yet. I wanted to get it stored here so I could pull it up quickly next week when needed. If you have tried this or a similiar recipe, please let me know the outcome.


Morning Sun, Fighting SAD

I'm going to win this fight with SAD. What's SAD you might ask. Seasonal Affective Disorder. Or lack of sun.

When I was younger I would laugh when I seen shows on tv where people would use light therapy or hear people talk about SAD. I thought they were crazy. There is people in parts of the world who hardly ever see the sun.

I love this painting titled Morning Sun by Edward Hopper.

Now in the last three years I'm not so sure. The last two years were hell for me in February and some of March. This year I vowed to try to understand it more so I could learn ways to deal with it. This year has been better for me than the last two years up until now. The last two weeks has been a real fight.

I get grumpy and short tempered. I realize why I am feeling this way and it's hard to keep it bottled up without inappropriate displays of behavior.

I do think that one thing that has helped me tremendously this year is I have a couple of projects going, this blog being one of them. The other thing is it may have been a blessing on one hand that my hours were cut at work. This gives me a chance to come home without rushing, relax for a few minutes, get a few chores done, get supper started, all in peace and quiet. Hubby is still at work and boy wonder is still at school. It's like a little recharge for my battery before switching from office manager to mommy/wife.

This weekend is daylight savings time and is hard for me to adjust. Along with SAD it's a rough couple of weeks ahead for me.

I would love hearing from anyone else who suffers from SAD and ways you have learned to deal with it. Do you use light therapy? Do you just try to ignore it? Do you try to throw yourself into a project? Let me know some ideas.


Water Saver

The average toilet uses 3-7 gallons of water per flush. Save up to 10 gallons per toilet a day. Instead of placing a brick in your toilet tank (they will disintegrate over time) place a plastic pop bottle filled with pebbles and water!

Aunt Jemima Complete Pancake Mix Recall

Two Quaker Oats products -- Aunt Jemima Complete Pancake Mix and Aunt Jemima Buttermilk Complete Pancake Mix -- have been recalled and are under investigation for a possible health risk.

The recall is for the 32 ounce packages of the pancake mixes. The recall is for the Aunt Jemima Complete Pancake Mix boxes with the UPC code 30000-05070 or the Buttermilk Complete Pancake Mix with the UPC code 30000-05300. The expiration dates on the boxes range from Feb. 8 through Feb. 23.


Banana Cake Recipe Failure

I tried a new banana cake recipe tonight and it was not that good. It baked out more like a bread than a cake. VERY heavy. The cream cheese icing was ok. I hate it when this happens. Boy wonder and hubby say they like it though.

I didnt post as much this past week. I havent been feeling well. Nothing in particular, other than really tired and achy. I tried to stick to last weeks planned meals but ended up changing a couple of them. This weeks is posted now, hopefully it will go better.

If anyone has an EASY 3 or 4 ingredient Banana Cake recipe, please help me! I have a favorite bread but want a cake recipe. I'm still ticked off, it took me 40 minutes to prepare that darn flop, bake it, then another 20 minutes to prepare frosting. I used to have a favorite cake recipe and cant find it. So let me know.

Weekly Menu Plan 3/3-3/9

Monday Pulled BBQ Pork Sandwiches, BBQ Beans, Grilled Potatoes, Banana Cake
Tuesday Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Buttered Corn Baked Ziti
Wednesday Mac & Cheese with Tuna Stove Top Stuffing Sausage Bake
Thursday Fried Pork Chops, Baked Potato, Broccoli Meatloaf, Baked potato Buttered Corn
Friday Grilled Ham/Turkey Paninis
Saturday Grilled Smoked Sausages, Pork n Beans, Chips
Sunday Baked Chicken Breasts, Baked Potato, Asparagus


Learning Creative Ways to Use Leftovers

I've read over and over how all you ladies take your leftovers and make a casserole out of them. Although I like to cook, I'm so up tight about cooking, rarely do I experiment, for fear of making something that does not taste good. This concept of just taking anything and everything and throwing it together in a casserole is a concept that is hard for me to accept. lol I'm trying to loosen up, trying to fix new and different things for my family, and learn more BASICS of cooking, something I was not taught. I watch cooking shows ALL THE TIME, and have learned so much from you and them.

The main thing I have learned is cooking doesnt have to be an exact/perfect science.

I asked a couple of you for instruction on how you make these leftover casseroles. It seems like the main thing is to use a cream soup for the base on your casserole. In the cookbook I picked up (Campbell Cookbook, Cooking With Soup) at a thrift store it has these recipes in it... basically the very same thing the ladies told me on the message board. Thanks ladies!

Souper Leftovers
leftover roast, steak, or chicken chopped (about 1 cup)
leftover vegetables (about 1/2 cup)
1 can (10.5 oz) condensed cream of celery
milk or water as needed
crisp toast slices

Combine all ingredients except toast. Heat and serve on toast or in hot patty shells. A tasty way to "make a meal" out of small amounts of meats and vegetables.
Variations: Substitute cream of chicken, mushroom, or tomato soup for cream of celery soup.

I'm thinking leftover beef roast with some leftover green beans in cream of mushroom soup would be really good this way!

Here's the second recipe from the book:

Soup Plus
A pattern recipe to use as you like with foods you have on hand

1/2 cup cooked meat, cut in strips
1 TBL butter or margarine
1 can any Campbells soup
1 soup can milk or water
1/2 cup cooked vegetables

Cook meat in butter until lightly browned. Add remaining ingredients. Heat; stir often. 2 to 3 servings.

This is almost like the first recipe. They will double simply enough. I think either would be good dumped into a 9x13 and topped with biscuits or tator tots with cheese.


February 2008 Grocery Total

I was short on time so I didnt figure up my coupons, savings, etc.
My total OOP for the month of February was $455.57. I used tons of coupons though!