Friday, November 30, 2018

Buying and Eating: November 16-30

We have $320.63 of the monthly budget remaining for the last two weeks of the month.  No worries.  I've got this.  :)

What We Ate:  macaroni and cheese; vegetable soup; chili and cheese quesadilla; curry, rice, lentil pancakes, broccoli;  spaghetti and meatballs with garlic bread and peas;  creamy couscous and chicken casserole, lima beans, peaches; Thanksgiving Feast of turkey breast, green bean casserole, cranberry sauce, dressing, sweet potatoes, crescent rolls and pumpkin pie; turkey sandwich; pepperoni pizza; turkey and cranberry strata; salmon and kale quiche, green beans, fresh fruit salad;  chicken with pesto pasta, steamed broccoli, garlic bread; homemade turkey pot pie, homemade stewed tomatoes, fresh fruit salad; beef, bean, cheese and guacamole nachos;  shrimp scampi, potatoes au gratin, peas

What We Bought:

Aldi:  buttermilk (qt), crescent rolls (2), powered sugar, brown sugar (2), raisins, pretzels (2), butter (6), cream cheese (3), white chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, butterscotch chips (2), brie, romaine lettuce, cucumber. $33.74

Tops:  broccoli (1.5 lbs), eggs, brownie mix, clementines (3lbs) $ 6.61

Giant Eagle:  yams (2.5 lbs),  canned vegetables (8)  $3.04

Bread Store:  bagels (3), bread (3), rolls  $5.56

Costco:  tortilla chips, 3 berry frozen berries, pork loin $5.83 .(after coupons and cash back)

Total Groceries for Two Weeks:  $54.78

Eating Out:
Lunch out with Mike:  $14.62
Mike lunches hunting. $18.33
Lunch with Angela. $ 18.75

Total Eating Out for Two Weeks:  $51.70

Grand Total for Two Weeks:  $106.48

Remaining Monthly Allotment to Add to Cushion:  $214.15 which takes our cushion to $928.50 ytd and $ 1411.58 grand total.

For the month of November we spent a total of $155.24 which works out to $5.17/day or $2.59/person/day.

Groceries only work out to $91.32 or $3.04/day and $1.52/person/day.

As you can tell, we ate from our stockpile this month, in the main.  It's too big so we will continue to do so for awhile.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Savory Cracker Crumb Quiche Crust

I'm not a big fan of rolling out pie crust.  I do it, but I am always looking for ways to avoid it.

Also, I usually have several boxes of almost finished crackers in my cupboard.  Why finish one box when you can just open a new box.

Putting the two together, I developed the second cousin once removed to the graham cracker crust.

Gather together all your dribs and drabs of savory crackers that you have hidden in your cupboards.  Heck, even a few corn flakes at the bottom of the box work.

 Crush them very fine.  I used my food processor.

Measure out two cups of the resulting crumbs.  Add one stick of melted butter and mix well.

Press firmly into your pie pan.  Bake at 350 for 15 minutes to set the crust.  Let cool slightly.

Pour in your favorite quiche filling and bake.


No rolling pin required.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Save Energy, Save Money, Save Mother Earth

A lot of money saving habits are good for the planet, too.  And, that's why we continue to do them long after they are strictly necessary.

For example, we have a gas stove.  Although the oven pilot light is always on, Mike has turned off the burner pilot lights.  It's estimated that each pilot light would burn about 8 therms of gas per month, at about $1.50 per therm, or $10.50 /month.  We have two burner pilot lights so we save 16 therms of gas and $21.00/month.  Per year that comes to 192 therms and $252.00.  I can do something with that.

I also hang all my clothes to dry.  I average 5 loads/ week or 260 loads/ year.  Each load averages 3.3 kwh.  The cost of a kwh is about 11 cents.  That means my 260 load would cost me $ 28.60 to dry.  The money really isn't worth it, but not to use the 856 kwh of fossil fuel generated electricity is, to me.

What choices/ changes can you make to save energy and help Mother Earth?

Friday, November 16, 2018

Buying and Eating: November 1-15

This month we have $369.39 for food which means   $12.31/day  and    $6.16/person/day.     Groceries and meals out are both covered by this amount.   Our Cushion ytd is $714.35.  Our Total cushion is $1197.43.

What We Ate:
Turkey sandwich and macaroni and cheese;  Mooshu, mixed vegetables, strawberries;  at Ellen's; leftover smorgasbord; dinner with Mike and Gail; more leftovers; lasagna, tomato cheese bread, green soy beans, tomato salad; grilled pork, butter beans, apple sauce, beets; chili spaghetti, guacamole with chips;  homemade pizza with chips; mushroom stroganoff with spaghetti squash, butternut squash, rye cheese bread, strawberries; pizza from freezer and chips;  bbq pulled pork sandwich, scalloped potatoes, cream corn; leftover stroganoff over noodles, applesauce, roasted artichoke hearts, baguette;  spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, salad

What We Bought:
Wal-Mart:  pretzels, Apple pastries .$1.47
Aldi:  Brown sugar (2), butter, olives (2), grapes. $17.50
Save a Lot:  carrots( 2lb), potatoes (10 lb), Apple's (3lbs), sweet potato (1)   $4.89
Tops:  frozen vegetables (11 lbs), sugar (4lbs)  $10.67
Country Fair:  Virginia ham (lb), eggs. $2.01

Grocery Total:  $36.54

Meals Out:
Taco Bell on way to Erie. $8.13
Sam's Club on way to Erie. $4.09

Total for Meals Out:  $12.22

Total for Food:  $48.76
We have been eating from our full freezer and cupboards, as you might have guessed.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Easy Pumpkin Pancakes

Tis the season.  Enjoy.

2 eggs.         1/2 cup pumpkin or pureed winter squash .        2 Tbs. Sugar .       
1/4 cup oil.         1 cup milk.         1 3/4 cup Bisquick.     
 1/2 tsp each of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger

Mix well and cook as usual.  Top with maple syrup and enjoy a true taste of autumn.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Five Frugal Things in October, OK, More Than Five

1.  Free 8x10 photo. And 2 free 5x 7 photos from Walgreen's.

2.  Free winter coat from a friend.  My favorite color, too.

3.  Free grapes and tomatoes from friends that led to juice, pie filling, jelly and mincemeat.

4.  Salvage shopping.  Restock of the cupboard.

5.  Free food from Giant Eagle.

6.  $5 coupon at thrift store when I spent $30.

7. Homemade Sesame Oil for Asian recipes.

8.  Bought gift cards at Giant Eagle to earn cheaper gas.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Buying and Eating: October 16-31

Remaining monthly budget:  $207.73

What We Ate:
Mooshu, salad, strawberries; pork roast, salad, cottage cheese, sauerkraut
The end of low carb!
Chicken a la king over biscuits with salad;  Mexican pizza with guacamole;  leftover smorgasbord; ribs, augratin potatoes, green soy beans, cheese bread; creamy rice with spinach, mushrooms and chicken, fresh pears, croissants;  curried hot turkey salad, curried potatoes, lentil pancakes;  grilled pork chops, stuffing, fried green tomatoes, pears with bleu cheese;  grilled brats with onions and peppers, baked beans and potato chips; leftover smorgasbord;  tuna chowder, tomato bread, fruit crisp; pizza from the freezer; leftovers;  dry rub grilled ribs, baked beans, stovetop stuffing
What We Bought:
Aldi:  Spaetzle,  pears, sugar .$5.87

Aldi:  mushrooms (2)  $1.78

Price Rite:  tuna (6), pasta, spaghetti sauce, fresh cilantro for guacamole, cream cheese (3)  $ 9.47

Commissary at Dover:  baby back ribs (4 lbs @ $1/ lb), toaster pastries (RV treat), soy sauce (1/2 gal.), curry paste (4), dark cocoa, baking powder, brown sugar, cheese (2 lbs), 2 hard rolls, bleu cheese, everything bagels  $33.99

Commissary at Fort Meade:  honey buns (treat), dry milk, cornmeal, olives (2), pretzels (3), egg noodles, Apple fritters (treat), grape leaves, dry garbanzo beans. $37.51

Total Groceries:  $88.82

Eating Out:

Mike's Lunch .$1.61
Joyce's Birthday Lunch. $20.65
Breakfast with Dad:  $21.86
Lunch with Ginger. $10.00
Lunch with Meg:  $15.00

Total Meals Out:  $69.12

Grand Total for Two Weeks:  $157.74

Amount Added to Cushion:  $49.99