Friday, January 30, 2015

Using what we have continues....

In an effort to increase the amount of fruit and veggies in our daily meals I've used a bunch of fruit and veggies for today's meal.

We are going to have homemade spaghetti sauce with Italian sausage over whole grain thin spaghetti with salad, green beans, and sliced apples.

The apples are self explanatory. I will slice them and serve on the side. We will have some green beans from the freezer and microwave them prior to eating. The whole grain thin spaghetti is a opened box that has been lurking in the pantry. There's about half a box left. It needs to go today.

Our homemade spaghetti sauce consist of 1 cup of tomato paste, 1/2 cup of water, the last of the red, yellow, orange, green peppers I cut into strips. I had one of each color left to use. I sliced up one whole onion, two cloves of garlic, a handful of fresh mushrooms (I cut them small. I don't care for huge pieces of mushrooms in my meal), two cans of diced tomato (juices included), and I put in some Italian sausage I cooked in olive oil. The Italian sausage links were taken out of their casing. I browned them on top of the stove with some olive oil. I added some basil to it and put it all in the crock pot.

We are out of fresh Parmesan cheese from Aldi. I do have some of the "shaker" Parmesan cheese if the kids would like that on their pasta. Our salad is the last of the lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion, peppers from yesterday's meal. We have two dressings for it, a sweet southwestern kind, and thousand island from Aldi.

I go back to work tonight.

Thursday, January 29, 2015


We had more salad left over from last night (lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion, peppers), home made pizzas (two were cheese, one pepperoni, one supreme IE mushroom, peppers, onion, garlic, pepperoni), and sliced pears.

We are using up what we have to keep some money saved. I used the last bit of Spaghetti sauce and mixed it with some tomato paste and a bit of water. I put the last bit of mozzarella cheese in the blender and grated it. I used pepperoni I had in the freezer, and cut up a bunch of lurking veggies. I used the last of the Parmesan cheese that we bought shredded from Aldi.

Four our pizza crust, I used a awesome bread recipe. The crust was amazing. We have the equivelant of one pizza left over. My DD will probably take that to work tonight for her lunch.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

What's been cooking...

I had two very small pieces of pork roast I bought a whole ago at Aldi for 1.99 lb. I took both out of the freezer yesterday morning and let thaw. To my disappointment, they were both very fatty. I ended up trimming off all the fat. I sliced both pieces into thin "strips" and covered them with mustard and spices. I used about 1 cup of seasoned breadcrumbs and breaded them. They went into the oven at 325 for about 40 minutes.

I microwaved a open bag of lurking broccoli that was in the freezer that needed to be used up.
I had some salad that my DD made the night before. We finished that (lettuce, onion, tomato, cucumber, peppers).

Today's meal will be some chicken tortellini I bought from Aldi. It's the refrigerated kind. I don't know why I bought it, I guess I was looking for something different. I am going to simmer these and serve them with the last of the Prego sauce for the children, topped with some shredded Parmesan cheese.

I am going to serve the chicken tortellini for myself and DH. I'm going to coat a pan with some olive oil, simmer a couple strips of red, yellow, orange, and green peppers, half a sliced onion, a couple cloves of garlic, and a whole tomato diced up. I will let this cook down some, and serve this over the pasta, with some Parmesan cheese.

All five of us will have left over salad on the side. I have a frozen bag of green beans that we can microwave to have on the side. We are working hard to increase our veggie intake and use what is available at home.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Dinner and work

Friday night I went to work in a middle of a winter storm. I ended up getting a hotel room paid for by my employer to ensure that I was able to return to work on Saturday night. I was able to get home Sunday morning and return to work Sunday night.

My DH made chili last night for dinner. We had all kinds of chili stuff in the pantry. He didn't look and see what was available and went out to buy the ingredients. Oh well. It's his money, not mine.

I had a package of Aldi frozen ravioli in the freezer. I simmered them, topped them with some Prego spaghetti sauce and shredded Parmesan cheese. That's dinner tonight!!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Dinner tonight

We are working on using things up and incorporating the lurking items into our new groceries I bought the other day.

Aldi had chicken drumsticks on sale for 89 cents a pound. There's 12 in each package and I bought two large ones. I broke them down into five per serving and put them in the freezer.

I have five drumsticks marinating in some garlic and herb marinade I had in the fridge (lurking, didn't use all of it up yet). I also have a package of pepperidge farm stuffing mix in the pantry (lurking). I cut up half the onion that was left over form yesterday, several stalks of celery, two cloves of garlic, one large green apple, some sage, thyme, one container of turkey stock from the freezer, and the last cup of chicken stock that I had in the fridge. It will be stuffing to go with our chicken drumsticks. It will bake in the oven and be part of our meal.

I am also serving a salad. I bought all the produce this past Wednesday when I went to the store. We have some lurking salad dressing that needs to be used up.

What's been cooking...

My computer blogging time was cut since my daughter did something to our computer. She shut down my blog with some code and password that locked me out. I wasn't able to post or even log into my blog. Funny though, I could got to my blog off my android, but not post, and get links to my other blogs. I don't understand.

Anyway, she fixed it. 

We had Shepard pie last night. I used a pound of ground beef, half an onion, two gloves of garlic, a can of lurking cream corn (in the pantry from thanksgiving), a 1/2 bag of frozen corn, and a couple of potatoes (to make mashed). It was pretty awesome. There's enough for one serving left. I'm thinking I will take it to work tonight (unless my husband eats it). 

Wednesday, my kids were out for a snow day. I made use of a couple of things lurking in the pantry. I baked an angel food cake (box mix, only needed water), made a from scratch cheese pizza (ABM ingredients, lurking pasta sauce 1/4 left in a jar, and some mozzarella cheese), and finished off the last seven eggs by making a hash of sorts (scrambled eggs, the last bit of ham pieces I had in the freezer, maybe 1/2 cup...and some small cheese pieces). 

I got paid yesterday. I was able to get most of March's bills paid (I like staying a month ahead), and even paid May's mortgage. I was able to put 300 dollars in my savings. 

My first class ended towards my Master's program. My second starts February 26th. I have payment arrangements to make for this five credit class. It's 445 dollars a credit, plus a 150 technology fee. 

I cut the overtime down some. I only picked up three shifts on the next schedule instead of my usual 8 (making it one extra shift a week). My next pay check in two weeks will not have any overtime in it. I am hoping that it is not a big financial hit to my bank account. 

The kids are well. My teens are still in school. My oldest DD is working full time at a local factory. 
My husband is well. We went out yesterday to a local experimental farm and walked two miles with our two hound dogs. It was pretty awesome to get out together, even if it was a bit cold. 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015


my 17 year old apparently put some kind of block on my blog...changed something....locked me out for a few days...

She got me back to my blog tonight.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

What's been happening...

Work. Lots of it. I'm hoping to cut back on the overtime. I'm tired and working on recovering from a cold virus. It's not pretty at all. Body aches, exhaustion (I've been in bed before 8 most nights), runny nose, non productive cough, and a mild headache...nothing ibuprofen, sleep, and tea can't fix.

Last night we had home made meat loaf, oven roasted carrots, peas, onion, Brussel sprouts, and celery. It was an easy meal and I tossed all the veggies in some Italian herb marinade.

We've also had BBQ pork chops, with a mixture of veggies.
KFC one night (my DH bought it).
Spaghetti and sauce

I put the last of our sliced turkey in the crock pot with a bunch of carrots, onion, garlic, pepper, potatoes, celery, and a couple containers of turkey stock from the freezer. I added some spices, and I will let it cook all day. YUM!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

dinner tonight

Home made cheese burgers (topped with lettuce, tomato, sliced onion, pickles) and potato wedges with Parmesan, garlic, and rosemary.

All made at home from stuff we had in the fridge, pantry, and spice cabinet.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Monday and Tuesday's meals

On Monday, I took a good portion of left over turkey and stuffing and piled them on plates. I made from scratch gravy and covered the plates with it. The kids were loving it. It was so carb heavy that I couldn't finish it.

Tuesday, we made turkey salad with the rest of the turkey. I cut up celery, diced turkey, added some mayo, chopped pickles, onion and garlic powder, poultry seasoning, and thyme. We had this on left over hamburger buns that needed to be used. We served fresh pineapple on the side.

The turkey is officially GONE with only stock in the freezer.

Using things up...

The kids are home from school due to a winter snow and ice storm. We have been pretty good about using some items up.

We've had scrambled eggs with the last bit of cheese that was hiding out in the back of the fridge for breakfast. We took a huge container of bean soup dated 11/25/14 and heated this up for lunch. It fed four of us (my oldest is sleeping since she worked last night).

Tonight we are having chicken "Italian" sausage (we have three links left over from our turkey dinner the other night, will peel off skin and slice very thin) with fried thin sliced onion. We are going to use up the last bit of brown rice with Haitian beans (steamed), and make salad (lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes). My DH and I will put our chicken "italian" sausage over our salad and leave the brown rice and beans for the kids.

I also have three apples and a pear that are going soft. I'm going to cut them up in small pieces, put some butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon on them, and cover it with some older packets of whole grain oats I had in the pantry. We will bake this in the oven and call it "dessert".

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Sunday dinner

We had left over turkey and sides from yesterday for dinner.

We have a huge bowl of turkey stock in the fridge from the bones.

I am not going to eat turkey for some time now.

Our soup will be meatless...when I make it.

Saturday, January 3, 2015


Last night we had hot dogs, steamed broccoli, and some mac and cheese. The mac and cheese was made from left over sea shell pasta that was in the fridge and a basic white sauce with deli cheese ends added to it.

My daughter (Mary, 17) wants to bake our other turkey today. I have cut up some celery (including leaves), carrots, and onion for the crock pot (to make turkey stock later from the bones and skin). It's put aside, since she wants to do the prep for our actual meal alone. The turkey is 13 pounds and I'm hoping for lots of left over turkey for sandwiches.

I have left over boxed stuffing (about a cup) that needs to be used. She will make her own dressing using two cups of chicken stock I took out of the freezer, two chopped apples, half an onion, some celery, two chicken sausage (Italian flavor) links, and home bagged stuffing crumbs. We will combine the two different kinds of stuffing and bake them in the oven.

I have a lone turkey bag in the pantry she can use. I think she wants to heat up buttered corn in the freezer, a steam type bag). I asked her to make a salad to go with our meal. We even have a lone container of cranberry sauce (my kids love it, me not so much).

My husband told me that he would take all the meat off the bones, and put the frame, skin, and extra stuff in the crock pot after dinner. I prepped the veggies for the crock pot. All he needs to do is add everything (including water) and let it simmer overnight. I will strain the bones and skin out in the AM when I get home from work. The turkey stock will be added to the freezer for future meals.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Debt totals...

January 2014   109,488.31

mortgage 71,932.53
Equity line 23,446,73
student loan 14,109.05

January 2015   97,392.56

mortgage 69, 801.60
equity line 17, 626.10
student loan 9,964.86

I am following Dave Ramsey's snowball goal is to have my equity line paid off by August 2016...the terms of the loan change then. I send them the minimum payment of 75 dollars, and an additional 300 dollars every two weeks.

My student loan payment is 167 dollars a month. I send them 200 dollars every two clock work.

It doesn't seem like much, but when I added the new totals, it was BELOW 100,000.00

Amazing. One income.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

January 2015

Happy New Year!! I can't believe it's 2015. Wow! Time flies when folks are working, providing for their families, and finding a moment for quality time.

I am working New Year's Eve, and New Year Day night shift.

Dinner last might was left over chicken, corn, peas, potatoes with gravy. I made some boxed stuffing also for the carb loving kids. My daughter made sea shell pasta with Prego spaghetti sauce for this evening's meal since I have to work.

 I don't make resolutions. I end up breaking them within the first few weeks, and after doing so, I just stopped making them. I am looking forward to working less overtime (one can hope right???) and paying down my debt some more. I will have new numbers for my debt later this week. I have 2014 numbers written down and will do the math for 2015 prior to posting.

I hope 2015 brings the best for everyone!