Monday, February 28, 2011

Frugal February Results

Well, it is time to let everyone know what my final grocery tally for Mrs. P's Frugal February is. Drum roll please....$331.65. I am really happy with that amount. I usually allow a budget of $400.00 per month, so in that regard, I did well. I tried to stay at $300.00 or less for Mrs. P's challenge. I didn't quite make that goal.

I learned a few things from this challenge. One of the things I learned is to make a weekly menu instead of a two-week menu. I found when I tried to shop for two weeks, I wouldn't buy bread items or fresh fruit or vegetables for the second week. This meant I would end up in the grocery store again and that would spell disaster! So I am going to continue with my once a week menu planning and shopping.

I also noticed, after scouring my bank account, that I only earned $.02 in interest over the month! That kind of pisses me off.

So anyway, here is the menu for this week.

Monday - Pasta Primavera

Tuesday - Szechuan Shrimp

Wednesday - Mac & Cheese, green beans

Thursday - Grilled Salmon, couscous and a vegetable

Friday - Stromboli

Saturday - Pigs in a Blanket

Sunday - Pork Schnitzel, Creamy Corn

I am hoping Mrs. P will make this a regular feature of her wonderful blog. I have enjoyed the challenge. Mrs. P, do your linky thing so we can all see what everyone else did!

Hope you all have a great day - I played hookie from work and am cleaning house!! Then off to sew!

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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Quick Post

I have had a nice and relaxing weekend. So sorry it is over.

I spent a good part of Saturday quilting the scrappy quilt that I am making for a family friend. I am about half finished and hope to have it ready for binding in the next couple of days. My plan is to have it finished and mailed by her 90th birthday, which is mid-March. I will post photos when finished.

Here is a photo of one of the dresses I want to make for The Baby. It will be made out of linen and I think it will flow very nice.

Big and I went to see the new Jennifer Anniston/Adam Sandler movie, "Just Go With It." It was so funny and it was a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

My fingers are sore from calculating my final total in Mrs. P's Frugal February challenge! I have planned my menu for next week already. Wow, I can't believe I am so on top of things.

Well, I will heading off to bed soon, so I will sign off. Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Hexi Swap

About a month ago, I decided to join a Hexagon Swap. I received my first Hexi the other day. I was so excited! Sorry it took me so long to post. I love the post card she sent, it cracked me up!

My swap partner requested Cream petals and Red, Taupe or brown Civil War fabrics for the center. I didn't own any Civil War fabric. So, of course, I had to go shopping!

I like the way it turned out. What do you think?

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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Frugal February

I had a lovely and expensive trip to the Dentist today and am in a little pain because of it. I decided to take a pain pill, which is something I usually don't do. This post will be short and sweet. I am sure the pill will begin to hit me pretty soon and I will be more incoherent than normal!

I went to the grocery store today and managed to spend about $52.00. The groceries bought today will last till the 28th of February. My total for the month of Feb. so far is at about $280.00. If I can stay away from the stores, I will beat my goal of $300.00 for the month! I thought I had gone way over budget, so I was happily surprised!

Here is this weeks menu:

Monday - Pasta with homemade spaghetti sauce

Tuesday - Big had eggs and sausage and I had malt-o-meal. We were supposed to have fish, but because of my dentist visit, I needed soft food.

Wednesday - Vegetables with couscous

Thursday - Southwestern Cod and leeks

Friday - Patty Melts, homemade fries

Saturday - Whatever we can dig up (I left my menu in the car and it is snowing, so I don't want to get it.)

Sunday - Beef Tacos (these will be more like fajitas - not ground beef)

I know this doesn't sound too exciting. As I said earlier, I left the menu in the car and I don't want to go and get it! Most of the recipes are new, so I am excited! I will post about the meals as the week goes on.

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Monday, February 21, 2011

I'm a Slacker!

Well, I am not really a slacker. I have been busy with work and a few other things. I have also had some health issues. I have been experiencing some severe joint pain and have not been wanting to get on the computer. I have an appointment with a Doctor this Thursday and hope to find out what is going on then.

In the mean time, here is a little something for you all.

Aren't they cute? I just fell in love with them.

The Baby was home for the weekend and I was able to get a photo of her in her new sweater. She was not prepared for the photo and was disappointed that she had a long shirt under the sweater. She also wanted a skinny belt to go with it.

I think my February Frugalness went to hell in a hand basket. I didn't make a menu last week and found myself running to the store more than I would have liked. I will post a menu tomorrow and will let everyone know where I am at in regards to my budget.

I spent a good bundle of cash at Joann Fabrics over the weekend. They were having a sale on their clearance fabrics. Most of the fabrics are for clothing. I will post about them tomorrow!

Well, I am off to finish up my Patrica Cornwell book and to get some Hexagons sewn. Hope you had a good weekend!

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Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Valentines Day! Share your love with everyone today, even if it is just with a smile!

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Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Different Kind of Finish

I have another finish for 2011. It is not a quilt. I will claim it as a finish none the less.

While surfing blogs, I came across Grograin and was inspired by her month of embellished knits. I decided to "re-create" a sweater for The Baby.

So, about a month ago I went to our local Goodwill store and found a few sweaters I thought I could work with. I liked the look of this one and thought it had possibilities. It is a Tommy Hilfiger and I like the clean lines on it. Note the cigarette burn at the bottom. Sorry the photo is sideways - I don't know how to turn it around.

I used some lace and a couple of light weight fabrics for the ruffles.

Here is what I ended up with. I am hoping The Baby will like it.

I know this is not a great photo. The Baby is due home this weekend and I will have her pose with it on. I am sure it will look much better. I will try to get a close up of the ruffles.

On to more pressing matters....Thanksgiving Dinner in a Dish.

Make stuffing (I use two boxes of Stove Top) and put it in a baking dish. Press it against the sides.

Put left over turkey or chicken in the dish.

Layer corn on top. I used frozen, but you could use canned.

Pour a jar of turkey gravy on top. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until hot all the way through.

Mind you, I don't normally cook this way. This is an easy dinner to make when you are tired, but want more that potato chips and dip for dinner. Hope you enjoy.

Hope you are having a great weekend. I plan on basting "Krys'" scrappy quilt and getting some of the quilting done.

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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Frugal is the new "F" word

In my house, Frugal is the new "F" word! I decided to follow Mrs. P's decision to be more frugal in the month of February. It is not working so well!

All of us have craved sugar or chips or something non-diet as soon as we say we want to loose weight. Some of us have even found a new love as soon as we decide we are ok on our own. Well, apparently as soon as I said I wanted to be more frugal, things started to go wrong.

Here is a conversation that happened Monday of this week:

Me, "Hey Big, do you need anything from the store?"

Big, "Yeah, I need some shampoo and conditioner."

Me, "Can't you use any of the shampoo and conditioner I have already?"

Big, "No. I need ------ brand. I don't like what we already have."

Me, "But I am trying to be Frugal. You remember that I joined Mrs. P in being frugal. I really want to save some money and she is offering a prize and I would like to be the winner!"

Big, "You know Mrs. P will probably just send you Vegemite! She loves that stuff and thinks you should too!"

Me, "No, Mrs. P promised it wouldn't be Vegemite. Come on, play along with me."

Big, "Hey, you recently spent $50.00 of fabric and $100.00 on thread. In comparison, my shampoo and conditioner is cheap. "

I decided to end the conversation at that point because she was right. (I don't know about you guys, but I don't let her know she is right that often.) I'm just going to tell her there wasn't any ------ shampoo to be found and she will have to use what we already have.

I then decided to go to bed and snuggle up with my book. As I began to read, the side of my face started to pound. It got progressively worse as the night wore on. I didn't sleep much that night.

Tuesday morning, I called in to work and said I wouldn't be at work. I then took myself to the dentist.

After a $167.00 probing from the Dental Hygienist, I was told I have an abscessed tooth and for a mere $1,998.00, I can get a root canal and a cap! The best part of the visit was getting a prescription for Loritab!

The Baby called last night and told me she needed $45.00 to join the honorary organization she was invited to, $200.00 for the application fee for her trip to Argentina and Peru and I think there were some other dollar amounts thrown around, but by that time the pain meds had kicked in and I just can't remember.

Can you understand why I think Frugal is the new "F" word? I am still going to follow along with Mrs. P and try to save some money. I am just not going to call it being Frugal anymore. That word has now been deleted from my vocabulary!!

I hope you all have had a good couple of days. I will post the Thanksgiving Dinner in a Dish photos tomorrow - I need to go get a pain pill!

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Monday, February 7, 2011

First Finish for 2011!!

I have my first finish for 2011! It is the Quilt for Kids quilt that I have been working on for a few weeks. I will put it in the mail tomorrow. I am so excited. I plan to making 5 more "projects" to be donated in 2011. I am not sure if they will all be quilts, although I enjoyed working on this one.

As you know I am playing along with Mrs. P's Frugal February. Check out her progress at Quilting in my Pyjamas. I have only spent $50.00 this month. I do need to run to the grocery store tomorrow, but I only have a few things to pick up. I have my list written and my coupons clipped!

Here is this weeks menu:

Monday - Thanksgiving Dinner in a Dish (we did not have it last week)
Tuesday - Pasta Carbonara, Salad, Artisan Bread
Wednesday - Stacked Enchiladas
Thursday - Pasta with Veggies
Friday - Turkey Burgers with Swiss Cheese and Sauteed Mushrooms, French Fries
Saturday - Hot Dogs, Baked Beans, Chips
Sunday - Roast Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli

I had a few questions regarding "Thanksgiving Dinner in a Dish". I decided to take photos while I was making it tonight. I will post them tomorrow. I was thinking the recipe could easily be made with chicken instead of turkey. Mrs. P said she thought she would substitute leftover roast beef. Yum.

Tonight is my "cuddle up and read a good book" night. I am reading the new Patricia Cornwell book. I really enjoy her writing. So I am off to fill the hot water bottle (thanks again Marg for the cover) and crawl in bed for a night of good reading.

Hope you had a good day and a great evening doing something you enjoy!

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Sunday, February 6, 2011

This weekend

This has been a great weekend!

Big and jumped in the car early Friday morning and traveled to Parkersburg, WV. Big had an allergy appointment and we were able to pick The Baby up for the weekend. On the way home we stopped at Las Trancas Mexican Food Restaurant in Clarksburg, WV, and had a wonderful dinner. The Baby slept on the way home and as soon as we got in the house, she went to bed and slept till about 10:00 a.m. Saturday. Most of Saturday was dedicated to her studies.

She came up for air long enough to watch a movie with us and then it was back to the studies! She was able to get a lot of her work done. I love it when she comes home, even if I don't get to see her much. I feel good just knowing she is in the house.

This is what $100.00 worth of embroidery thread looks like.

Joann Fabrics had a 50% off sale on thread, so I stocked up a little!

Big finished a pastel portrait of The Baby this weekend.

This is the photo she worked from. It was taken two years ago.

I think it is really good, she is a bit critical of it. Each time she looks at it, she finds something wrong with it. I guess that is an artist for you. I wonder why we can never be happy with our work.

I am going to brag a little, so bear with me. The Baby has been invited to Alpha Lambda Delta. It is an honorary organization for freshmen with a Grade Point Average of 3.5 or above. I know she is a Sophomore already, I guess it takes a while for the invitation to arrive! I am so proud of her.

I am off to catch up on what everyone has been up to this weekend. I have to put the border on the Quilt For Kids and then it will be in the mail! I will be excited to have my first finish of the year! I am going to spend a little time working on my next weeks menu and prepare a post about my Frugal February! So far I have only spend about $50.00!

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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

It is late!

It is late at night and my brain is beginning to get fuzzy! I have been stressed out this afternoon because The Baby was on her way home from Washington D.C. and I was worried about what kind of weather she would have to drive through. Luckily, West Virginia and Maryland did not get as much bad weather as the rest of the north. She is safe at school and all is well.

Today, I left work early. I had a migraine and needed to be out of the smoky house that my client lives in. I came home, showered, ate and took a nap. When I woke up, I went to my sewing room and finished quilting the Quilt for Kids quilt. I have to put the binding on and then I will be finished and post a photo!

Yesterday, after work, I went to a quilt shop in one of the towns that is close to us. I received a coupon from them for $20.11 off any purchase. Guess what? I spent almost $50.00 after the $20.00!! I am happy with what I came home with!

Hope you all had a great day and those affected by bad weather were safe at home sewing away!

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Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Frugal Grocery February

Mrs. P over at Quilting in My Pyjamas, is attempting to clean out her freezers and save some money in the process. She invited all her readers to join her challenge. I decided to play along and see if I could save about $100.00 during the month of February. My usual budget for the month is $400.00, this includes shampoo, toilet paper, etc.

I thought I would start by taking a photo of my freezers. I have two, but both are attached to a refrigerator. They are pretty full. I could probably go a few weeks without purchasing too much.

I usually make a menu for two weeks, so this part of the challenge was easy. Here is my menu for one week.

Monday - Grilled Pork Chops, Baked Potatoes, Green Beans

Tuesday - Asparagus Frittata, Artisan Bread

Wednesday - Turkey Burgers, Tater Tots, Corn on the Cobb

Thursday - Thanksgiving Dinner in a Dish

Friday - Eat Out - We will be on the road to get The Baby for the weekend

Saturday - Calzones (using the Artisan Bread recipe)

Sunday - Chili (this will go in the crock pot) Corn Bread

I have everything I need to prepare all the dishes for the week.

I have not posted breakfast or lunches. Breakfast is usually eggs or cereal for Big (she eats them at work) and I usually eat oatmeal. Big has leftovers for lunch and I usually have soup or cheese and crackers.

Yummm...tonight's dinner!

We are getting rain for the next couple of days. My thoughts and prayers are with all of those who are in this horrible storm.

Take care!

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