September 30, 2008
Our huge sweet potato & what we've been up to...
Yes, that is a watermelon next to it. I cleaned it really well and cooked it in the crockpot on low for 7 or so hours. It actually tasted good -- we thought it might not because of the size.

My husband went in to the prison last night to preach, and I passed him on the road after work. He never said a word about what awaited me on the counter! That is a Tupperware Thatsa Bowl (holds 32 cups) and a Tupperware Thatsa Mega Bowl (holds 42 cups!) filled with peeled and sliced apples!! There was also a note that said "Your turn..." I should have snapped a photo of the note.

I think my part was easy -- here are 6 quarts of applesauce ready to put in the canner for processing. I did have more sauce but did not have any clean/sterilized jars ready or it would have been 7. (only 7 fits in the canner at a time)

Here they are after processing sitting on the table to wait out the 24 hours before we move them. We have never canned before but my husband and I decided, how hard could it be? It's not at all, just follow the directions. We used this site for help. Our first batch you can see in the background was very dark. We had cooked the apples in the crockpot instead of the stove -- tastes fine, just looks too dark. (not doing it that way again!) Give it a try - we found a case of jars on clearance at Target for $2.14! Can't beat that. (Hoping for more free apples or pears to can more!)


Gold Medal Whole Wheat Baking Recipe Book

Free online recipe book from Gold Medal -- you can access it here. Once the recipe book loads if you click on save, another screen will pop up allowing you to save it as a PDF file to your computer.

There are quite a few good recipes in it -- Snickerdoodles, Whole Wheat Oatmeal Raisin Cookies, Pizza, Berry Crisp! Yum!


September 29, 2008
Menu Plan Monday -- 29 September

We did pretty well last week, although I didn't make a couple of things ... we just had more leftovers so no need to go out. My pantry and freezer are starting to go bare so I will have to start buying again, except for the little items. Red are food items I had to buy -- the rest are from the pantry.
Sunday -- Chicken, Homemade Mac & Cheese, Sweet Potato, Broccoli, Biscuits
Monday -- Tortellini Soup
Tuesday -- Grilled Chicken, Corn, Orzo (Need Marinade for chicken) Sweet Potato
Wednesday -- Jambalaya (Never made this last week-- out of Rice!)
Thursday -- Pork Steak on the grill, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans
Friday -- Homemade Pizza
We made homemade applesauce this weekend and ended up canning 6 quarts. This was our very first experience with canning. My husband and Stephen helped with peeling them! Interesting job -- I can't even imagine canning 40 or 50 quarts of just one food, let alone -- apples, corns, beans, jams and jellies .... ugh! We still have apples left that we need to process and not waste! We were given a HUGE sweet potato this week, I cooked it in the crock-pot. I will post a photo tonight. I was afraid it wouldn't be sweet but it was yummy! We used half of it for the one meal and still have 1/2 left.


September 27, 2008
I Had No Idea ...
With all the political issues adding to the crisis' of the world today -- one subject that has been on my heart lately is if we as Christians, should in fact vote? I plan on studying this out -- but I am leaning towards voting. How can we as Christians, not vote? I realize we should aways pray for our country, our leaders and I know that in fact God answers prayer ... sometimes He answers it where you can have no doubt that God did it alone miraculously, and then there are times where He uses the body of Christ(us!) to answer prayer and change the world ...

After seeing this, I am prayerfully considering how we can NOT vote?


September 25, 2008
Common Sense with Money Giveaway
One of my favorite money saving idea blogs is Common Sense with Money -- there are always great ideas, posts about deals and other interesting tidbits. This week is her blogversary and she is having a giveaway for a Coupon Organizer. I so WANT one of those -- go visit for a chance and gain some super ideas!!


September 22, 2008
Menu Plan Monday

I had a menu last week but I just noticed I never posted it! Silly me.
Sunday -- Spaghetti with Homemade Sauce, Meatballs and Garlic Toast
Tuesday -- Breakfast for Dinner (eggs, bacon and french toast)
Wednesday -- Crockpot Jambalya
Thursday -- Grilled BBQ Chicken, Coleslaw and Noodle Side (?) Orzo
Friday -- Mom works so leftovers for the men folk.


September 15, 2008
Freebies from one of my favorite blogs!
From one of my favorite "savings/deals" blog!! I'mm pretty excited about the tote bag -- I received the purple one from Earth's Bounty in the mail -- its huge! Works great for shopping any my huge bags of library books.

picture not available

Free sample of Jergen's naturals from Walmart HERE

Free sample of Crest Whitening Expressions HERE

Free sample, coupon, and tote bag from Nature's Bounty HERE

Free sample of Pledge Multi-surface from Walmart HERE

Free sample of Calvin Klein's fragrance: Secret Obsession HERE

Free sample of Baby's Only Organic Formula HERE

Choose from Toddler Dairy or Soy Pediatric FormulaFree sample of Airborne HERE

Free sample of Kotex lightdays HERE

Free mini Mr. Clean Magic Eraser HERE
This one did not open up immediately for me - if it doesn't for you hit the refresh button.

Get a FREE Kashi Oatmeal and Dark Chocolate Cookie HERE

Sign up for the great Crayon Caper and get free crayons (pink and brown) and a coloring/activity book HERE

Free Rouge Magazine HEREThis magazine is a beauty publication from P&G and often contains coupons.

Several Arby's coupons HERE


Zucchini Stir Fry of sorts
I did a quick stir fry from one of the huge zucchini's from our small garden. It tasted so good.


one (mammoth) zucchini or 3-4 small zucchini, chopped

one red bell pepper, chopped

1/2 onion, chopped

salt, pepper, garlic powder and olive oil (1T)

Chop vegetables and saute in olive oil for about 10 minutes. Add seasonings to taste. I ate the rest for lunch today and enjoyed every bite!!


Menu Plan Monday

I did really well last week with the plan -- I swapped some days around but feel like I am back on track. It literally took me less than a minute to write out a plan for this week -- I don't shop for the week but rather shop sales and have food items on hand.

Sunday -- Roast, Cheesy Ranch Potatoes, Zucchini Stir Fry (so yummy!!), Mixed Veggies

Monday -- Pigs in a Blanket, Mac & Cheese (box), Leftover Veggies from Sunday

Tuesday -- Oriental Noodles, Rice (these noodles are from Aldi's -- 2.89 a pkg!)

Wednesday -- Beef Stew or Vegetable Beef Soup (from leftover roast)

Thursday -- Grilled BBQ Chicken Breasts, Orzo, Broccoli

Friday -- Hamburgers on the grill, Oven Fries, Veggie

Saturday -- undecided (yard sale this weekend, if no rain!!)

Most of my menu is pantry or freezer items on hand. I did buy the pepper for the zucchini and the package of reduced-fat crescent rolls (56 cents) for this week and that is it! (My grocery budget for this week was slim to none!)


September 9, 2008
Candy . . .
I stumbled across a few candy blogs today -- and there are some new and yummy looking fall candy! I love Autumn -- its my favorite season -- I love the colors and the weather.

Go visit - they both have some super candy reviews.

Candy Blog

Candy Enthusiast

Candy Corn Kisses -- how cool are these? They also have Pumpkin Spice Kisses and Caramel Apple Kisses. Yum!! Pumpkin Spice Lattes are so yummy -- I need to see if they are available.


Menu Plan Monday (A little late ...)
Sunday -- Homemade Chili (served with elbows instead of rice!)

Monday -- BLT Sandwiches and Watermelon

Tuesday -- Oriental Noodles with Chicken and Fried Rice

Wednesday -- Leftovers

Thursday -- Chicken Soft Tacos, Spanish Rice, Corn

Friday -- Homemade Pepperoni Pizza

I have been using a lot of the food items in my pantry and freezer. We defrosted the big freezer and there were some hidden gems in there. We did really well last week so I know menu plan Monday works for our family.


September 1, 2008
Menu Plan Monday
Monday - Brats, Dogs, Coleslaw, Corn on Cob and Beans (All Pantry Items) Watermelon

Tuesday - Soft Beef Tacos, Corn and Fidello

Wednesday - Noodles with Leftover Roast and Gravy (from freezer)

Thursday -- Dorito Casserole

Friday -- Oriental Noodles, Tilipia and Fried Rice

I "thought" if I started posting, I would do better. Its much better to have a menu plan than to scramble at the last minute. =)