Saturday, August 17, 2013

Back To School Dinners on a budget it's off to the races again, school starting means homework, quick dinners, sports, and everything that calls for the end to summer. While it can be hard to get back into the swing of things it can also be exciting. Right now the clothes are new, the backpacks haven't been broken in yet and the shoes sit unscuffed. In the meantime...your wallet just had a hit for school supplies, your schedule just became more cramped, and you have less time for just about everything. One thing you can take off your plate are quick dinner fixes. Here are a few ways how...

1- chicken, it may take a while but its pretty simple, And I don't mean a little chicken strips I mean a whole chicken. Put it in a roasting pan with rice and enough water for the rice and the chicken, add some salt and seasonings as you wish and pop the whole thing right in the oven. about 20 min per pound of chicken so a 4lb chicken would take 1 hour and a half roughly. (check to make sure it is all the way done before removing)
this will give you dinner, with about 5 minutes prep time and lunch for the next day! Chicken sandwhiches
prep time 5 min
cook time 1-1.5 hr

2- pasta- easiest thing you can make. Angel hair cooks super fast. Throw some water to boil, ten minutes on the timer, add some salt, a chicken bullion, throw in the pasta, stir a few times and you are done. Take it add some ricotta cheese and tomato sauce and you have leftovers again for lunch.
If you have some extra chicken still throw that in too!

prep time- 2 min
cook time- 20 min

3- Having a long day? which day isn't right? lol hotdogs and french fries,  broil them in the oven takes about 5 min for the hotdogs and then bake another 10 for the fries on whatever heat the package directs you. Add a salad with bacos and a great dressing and the children will love it!

prep time- 2 min
cook time- 15 min

Quick tip---if you want to preheat your oven faster turn it on broil first then give it a few minutes and put it on the temp you really need ;) (do all of this before adding in the food)

4- breakfast for dinner? scrambled eggs- its great protein and quick! Crack a dozen eggs in a bowl (should feed 4-5) and add salt, italian seasoning if you have it, some chopped garlic, onions, whatever floats your boat. Then pop some good bread in the toaster and add butter and jelly- and it is super filling- only clean up is the pan for eggs!- leftovers-? save for breakfast!!

prep time - 7 min
cook time-10 min

5- Pizza- most grocers have pizza dough cold and fresh for 2-3 dollars. Grab some and head home! Leave it out for 1 hour, then spread it on a baking pan, broiler pan, whatever you have that is flat. put down pizza sauce if you have it, (butter and garlic will work if you don't have pasta sauce or want a different flavor). Add your veggies that are leftover from the week, and toss in the oven! Way better than takeout and you used the veggies up!

prep time- 10 min
cook time- 15 min

all great meals- i hope you enjoyed the blog tips for today!!

Also if you haven't met the school rush yet go to for all your domestic help needs!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Locking the keys in the car..and the purse..and the cellphones...

Okay, so most of us have been there, some more than once, and then there are the habitual offenders. I fall  into that category. So much so that I actually lost the 2 spares my car came with and had 2 more made and managed to still lock myself out of the car. at home. with my purse, BOTH of my cells, and of course all of my credit cards, in the car. To be perfectly honest thought this time my son was to one to actually lock the doors before my purse was taken out. I have though, somehow, managed to create a habit where I put my keys in my purse as soon as I take them out of the ignition, then the purse is often the last thing to be unloaded from the car. Not brilliant, I agree. In the meantime, I have delegated the purse unloading to my eldest, however, he is not always paying attention either, he is 11. So now, I we have moved into a new community and there is the purse in the car and the phones and the keys, and we don't know a soul on the block yet (well enough to use their phone for at least 40 minutes to set up a  call to the insurance co.) so we went to bed, woke up the next day and set out for the clubhouse, that thank goodness we have, to call our insurance co.

Moral of the story, if you are anything like me, or this story, make sure to keep AAA or your roadside assistance. I will say it has literally saved me hundreds over the years.  Some useful information, AAA will not let you renew early, esurance makes you get full coverage just to also pay for roadside assistance and they only cover the first $75 and max out at $425 per 6 months (of all service calls, even tows). I have chosen Progressive for the reason they have no limit on coverage, or calls.

Monday, April 15, 2013

The birds

Do you ever wake up at the crack of dawn, everyone is asleep still and all you hear is the chirping of birds? Does it bring you to the memories of camping as a child, or the first days of spring? Sometimes it is nice to savor those moments, before the hustle and bustle of the day starts, and remember to live each day one day at a time. Do something special today for a loved one and make it count.

Take The Time

When was the last time you made smiley faces on the pancakes or wrote a message with the mustard on the bread or wrote a note on your child's napkin in his/her lunchbox? Sometimes it's the little things that put the biggest smiles on their faces, so in our busy days lets try to remember some of the little things for our little people~

Monday, January 2, 2012

The Real Deals~

After Christmas shopping is here folks! Now is the time to really get out and go shopping for those main staples- Many stores are putting products on HUGE markdowns AND still putting out coupons.
Check out Kohls, Kmart, Herbergers and Sears to name a few for great deals- Target- umm not so much~

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Gift Cards For Christmas?

I know the topic of gift cards is touchy. Is it impersonal? Does it say I don't care? How much is cheap?
So here are my thoughts on gift cards.

~Gift cards are like cash but they limit where you can spend them.

~If you are giving a gift card to a child, cash would be better, as mom or dad could then decide how much goes into savings and how much of it they can spend.

~Since the recipients obviously won't use them until after Christmas the money you put on them will go farther since so many things will be on sale!

~The best presents are things people won't buy for themselves. If you know the person well get them a Gift card to their favorite store.

~Some people are harder to shop for and you can even buy "mall" gift cards. This is like a visa and they can spend it anywhere.

~The only down side- Just remember a gift card is essentially like cash in the essence if it gets lost it is gone~

~I don't suggest getting the in laws a gift card unless it's for a cruise! lol

So in short gift cards can be a great gift!

Smart Christmas Shopping

Okay so for those of you that didn't buy out the stores on Black Friday here are some last minute shopping tips.

~look for coupons online for the stores you are going to shop at that day. Kohl's, JCPenny's, Ect have 15% or 20% off coupons that you can just print off. There is typically no minimum purchase to use them but if you spend $100 that is $15-$20 off ; spend $200 and it becomes $30- $40 and that's worth printing a coupon for sure!

~pick up a circular when you walk into a store- often they have coupons in them you can use that day

~ask the clerk at the checkout if they have any store coupons that apply to your purchase or an extra flyer. They usually have one at the register they can scan for you when customers coupons won't scan properly. They don't tend to offer it but if you ask they often won't say no. (this works at grocery stores too)

~if you have an expired store coupon try it anyway- often stores will still honor them to get your business especially during this time of year ;)

~shop online to compare prices first so you get the best deal without having to go from store to store to look at prices and then map out your shopping route.

~make a list- it is easier to spend more when you are unfocused on what to buy.

~A lot of stores are already putting things on sale 30% off such as Target.

~Target for at least 1 is a store you can bring your receipt back to if the price of your item goes on sale in the next 7 days from purchase (does not apply to clearance items)

~and the last and best trick of all--if you are seeing anyone-coworkers, extended family, friends, after Dec 25 shop on the 26th!!!