February 23, 2013

Dry milk verses 2% = mix together!

We recently have come off the W.I.C. program, and was shocked at how expensive milk is!!  It's about $3.50 a gallon!  W-O-A-H!!

I remember reading on One Hundred Dollars A Month's blog awhile back about how to make your milk last longer, and I got a chance to try it out the other day.

What you need is:
-1 gallon of 2% milk
-1 empty gallon jug
-5 c. dry milk
-16 c. water

Pour half of the 2% milk into the empty jug, then start mixing the water with the dry milk.  Slowly add the mix to the jugs.  I think it tastes the same!  There's just a little bit of froth that comes with the dry milk, but if it's gonna save me an extra $3.50, I'll take it!

Especially when I buy 10 boxes of cereal for under $2/box, this milk stretching thing is right up our alley!

January 24, 2013

Bath Letters

Our bathroom is finally coming together!  I found these fun letters at Michaels for $3.99 each, and used a 25% off coupon, so they weren't too expensive.  Then I bought some spray adhesive to attach the letters to the wall.  I think I might reinforce them with wall mounting tabs.  They give a fun feeling to the "bath"room. 

Homemade Granola Bars

I've been wanting to make a healthy snack for Zman's kindergarten for a long time now.  And ever since he told me he had fortune cookies and rice krispies bars for a snack at school, it made me want to give the kids a better, healthy snack.

So, Zman was the "big cheese" on Wednesday, and I got out my oatmeal and made these tasty treats!

Homemade Granola Bars

Mix Together in a Small Bowl: 
1/3 cup brown sugar 
2/3 cup peanut butter
3/4 cup honey 
2 tsp. vanilla 
2tbsp hot water 

Then Mix in a Large Bowl: 
2 1/2 cups oats 
1 cup whole wheat flour 
1/4 cup wheat germ or wheat flour 
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
1 tbsp. sesame seeds 
1 cup raisins or chopped dried fruit 
1/2 cup chocolate chips 
1/2 cup coconut 

Then add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients 

Lastly, press into a 9x13 pan 
Bake at 350 for 20 min or until light brown 
cut into bars while warm and allow to cool completely 

Finally ENJOY!

December 21, 2012

Christmas 2013

Each year around Christmas, my boss, Lisa, asks me to help think of a gift to get or make for all 70 employees on our floor at the hospital.  Each year, I try to be frugal and thrifty, while making the gift look classy and clever.  This year I saw this recipe on Pinterest and thought to try it out.

Crock Pot Cinnamon Almonds
 1 1/2 C. Sugar 
3 Tbsp. Cinnamon 
1/8 tsp. Salt 
1 Egg White 
2 tsp. Vanilla
 3 Cups Almonds

What you need to do is whisk the egg white and vanilla in a large bowl.  Then add the almonds to that bowl.  In a separate bowl mix the sugar, cinnamon, and salt together.

Turn the crock pot on high.  Pour the sugar mix over the almonds, and then put in the crock pot.  Cook for about 2 hours, stirring ever 20-30 minutes, so the almonds don't burn.

Place them on wax paper to cool, then store in an air-tight container.

Then you are all set with lots of fun treats to share!

I added fun tags that said "We'd go NUTS without you on our team!"

 p.s. - If you're wondering where I got the bags from - I got them at Party City for $1.oo for 10 bags.

October 27, 2011

Z-man's artwork from school

Everyday we pick up the boys from preschool, they always have a stack of artwork to hand to us. I have a growing pile of papers on our office desk. I'm not sure what to do with all of them, so yesterday I figured that I could take digital photos of them. It's not a new idea, but I finally got around to taking a few that their teacher sent home with them.

Here are some sneak peeks into Z-man's Preschool:

September 23, 2011

Weekly Grocery Shopping Trip = $53.32

So, after a co-worker of mine joined a challenge this past week called SNAP hunger challenge, I was challenged to look at our grocery budget even more. The challenge was to live off of $30/week per adult in the household. This is the average amount given to individuals on the SNAP program.

That is $10 more than what we spend on groceries a week! So I've come to realization that it was not realistic to be living off of $50/week on groceries. I've talked it over with my husband, and I think that we are going to increase our grocery budget to $60/week. And planning meals is a must!

My husband and I also recently have started buying all our meat from a local farm called Triple S Farms.

Last week we spend $33 on ground beef, chicken, and bacon.

Here's what Z-man and I got this week for groceries:

Aldi's = $33.60

Big Lots = $9.60
Lots of snacks! Z-man picked out the Oreo's and the other cookies are for snack that Pudge is going to bring to preschool.

County Market = $10.12
They had some awesome deals that made items $0.88! So we got some more pasta and red sauce. The Fisher's almonds were in the clearance cart for $1.50. The soda pop is for a party that we're going to this weekend.

Total spent on groceries this week was $53.32.

Crockpot: Pumpkin Spice Latte

This recipe was too good NOT to share with you all, especially since the weather is just right for a cup. I found this recipe through A Year Of Slow Cooking's blog.

You combine these ingredients in a slow cooker:

-2 c. milk
-2 Tbsp. canned pumpkin
-2 Tbsp. white sugar
-2 Tbsp. vanilla
-1/2 tsp. pumpkin spice
(or 1/4 tsp. cinnamon, 1/8 tsp. cloves, 1/8 tsp. nutmeg and a pinch of ground ginger)
-3/4 c. strong brewed coffee

This just would be a great recipe if you're having friends over!

September 10, 2011

Briella's Boutique - Savoy, IL

If any of you local readers are looking for a great resale shop, this is it! Briella's Boutique is a fairly new cosignment shop, with some great deals. They have a variety of items, from kids clothing to dog clothing! :)

We happened to stop in this morning (my two boys and I), and low and behold, it was storytime! They have a story hour the 2nd Saturday of each month at 10:30, so we came at just the right time! They read a story to the kids, then have a craft, and then get to take home a snack. Wait, there's more! If you bring your kids in, then you get 10% off your purchase! (I'm not sure if that's everyday, or if it was just today). I was blown away by their attitude towards kids, it was a great feeling knowing that my kids were not a nuisance in their store.

So, if you're in the area, by the Walmart in Savoy, stop by to see their shop. I highly recommend it! I got a new pair of shoes for $24, and a new top for $5. And I love the fact that it's a form of recycling. I'm going to have to start co-signing my boys clothes there, because for us, All Things Kids, is further away from us than Briella's.

503 S Dunlap Ave.
Savoy, IL 61874
M-F 10-6
Sat. 10-4

So, if you get a chance and are in the area...check it out!

August 28, 2011

Groceries this week = $60.74

Big Lots = $4.14

Tried out a new Farmers Market this week. It is located by the Police Station in Champaign, and is open from 3-7pm. It's a rather small market, with only a few tents, and one huge pork roast! It smelled awesome! There was even a small sprinkler set out for the kids on behalf of American Water. My boys loved it!

We stopped by towards the end of the evening, around 6:30pm, so I think the lady selling the onions was wanting to get rid of them, because she gave me 8 for $6!

We used out WIC Farmers Market Coupons, so total these all cost about $12.

Aldi's is becoming one of my favorite stops for grocery shopping, because our printer is not printing out any coupons for me...no matter what I do. So Aldi's it is. We're going to try their frozen salmon this week. I hope it's tasty! Total = $46.88.

We also stopped at County Market, because we had a couple of store coupons, and had to pick up some items that Aldi's didn't have. Total = $9.72.

So, that's our weekly grocery shopping. We try to spend under $50/week. This week's total was $60.74. Last week we were under budget, so we used that leftover money towards this week.