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Showing posts from December 12, 2010

Frish Fry!

My dear hubby only gets 4 or 5 Friday nights a year off -- this just happened to be one of them! We zipped up to the Owl's Nest in Portage for their Friday Night Fish Fry, just the three of us. Family style bread basket, baked beans, coleslaw, beer battered fish and fries or a baked potato all add up to Wisconsin fun! (and $31.06 for the three of us) It is SOOOOO worth the drive! =) It must come off the monthly total as we had no gift card... Here is my monthly tally: $100.00 - $8.01 Chinese meal ------ $91.99 to go -$15.62 Copps Run ------ $76.37 -$6.11 Rocky's dinner while working -$15.35 today's Copp's run ------ $54.91 -$31.06 Family Fish Fry ------ $23.85 to go I know I am cutting it close but have a LOT of food in the house and should be able to make it until the end of the month.

25 Songs of Christmas: Song 25--We Three Kings

This is another holiday themed post. We have talked decorations, treats, gifties, and more - this is to feed your spirit. Tim's daily take on a different holiday song is simply beautiful...talking about holding his new baby brought me to tears... Grab a cup of coffee and feed your soul today. 25 Songs of Christmas: Song 25--We Three Kings : "'We Three Kings of Orient Are' Words 'Star of wonder, star of night...'  There are so many parts of this song that come to mind. ..."

Frosted Walnuts...

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I remember learning how to make this simple and yummy giftable treat almost twenty years ago, when I was a pretty new Tupperware Consultant. The idea was to teach our customers to make homemade treats, package them in Tupperware for gifts and use old Christmas cards to make the tags that also had the recipe on it. A perfect gift for those people that seem to have everything =) The best price I have seen for bulk nuts is Farm and Fleet. Seriously, great deals on your baking and candy making supplies, especially this time of year. To this day, I still love these and walnuts are SOOOOO good for you...it's the sugar that kind of neutralizes that health benefit here, LOL. Keep in mind that it is SUGAR though, not that nasty high fructose corn syrup. This recipe officially makes twelve servings...just try to stop at one! 4 cups walnuts 1 1/2 cups sugar 1/2 cup sour cream 2 tsp vanilla extract Put the sugar and sour cream in a pan and bring to a boil over medium heat, constantly stirri

Holiday Lights...

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It has always been one of my favorite things to do - drive around in the evening and see the colorful light displays on peoples houses this time of year. The challenging economy has made a lot of people rethink their holiday decor - they simplify it or skip it all together. There is no need for that kind of worry! The classic outdoor light, the C-7 bulbs that we remember from childhood were the culprits of the high electric bill. Now, you can get a string of C-7 florescent lights and the entire sting uses the same energy that ONE BULB of the old variety used to consume! My suggestion? In the post holiday sales - pick up a few strings at 50-75% off! Next year, you will be more than ready to make your yard one that we might drive by...it will be fun for the kids and hardly cost you a thing. :)

Late Night Boutique: Why not make your own Butter

We used to do this in gradeschool - put heavy whipping cream in a glass jar, seal it and shake. After a few minutes you see the butter start to form! It's a fun thing to do with kids and super yummy. This lady has a quick tutorial on her blog and the best part - butter comes out to less than $2 a pound! This is great way to beat the price right now and keep the butter fresh...keep an eye on the cream prices as they seem to drop a bit over the holidays for all the baking. I think I have a butter making week coming up and plan to put it into Tupperware and drop in the freezer! Enjoy the tutorial! Late Night Boutique: Why not make your own Butter : " I always thought making butter was a long process, but did you know it only takes 3.5 minutes and two ingredients for l pound of fresh butter?"

Where to find your coupons?

Sunday Newspapers and online print offs are where about half my coupons come from...keep reading to find out about all the other sources. **There is the social media like facebook that the companies have just started to use. "Like" them and you usually get a coupon that you can print twice. **Try things like Kraft First Taste.com for freebie products that the ask you to review. **You can actually get a lot of coupons in the store! This time of year they have a lot of mini books on the cardboard display units - one was by Keebler and Kelloggs - and had $50 of coupons in it! There are also tear pads, blinkies, peelies, wine bottle tags all over the store. In less than 5 minutes a few weeks ago, I got over $100 of coupons! - Check my blog post Keep Your Eyes Open and see what I am referring. **Try writing your favorite companies: Write and ask for coupons What products do you regularly use and love but rarely can find good coupons for? Write to the manufacturer, tell them

Today's Grocery Run - three transactions!

A lot of fun deals this week and I had one of those hams in mind - which was over and above the $25 threshold. Overall, I still did pretty well - over $140 for about $15. Besides that ham deal, there was the cracker/cookie deal - buy 8 and get them for $1.68 each -- add more for $2.50 each. PERFECT time to stock up on crackers for all the holiday parties and afternoon snacks...I DO want to point something out: When they have 8 oz boxes of crackers for the same price as the 12-13 oz -- which should you buy? DUH - right? But I saw people grab the smaller boxes and walk on! 10 BIG boxes gives you the same amount of crackers as 16 smaller ones. I got 6 boxes basically for FREE then by choosing the larger size. =) I broke it down into three separate transactions this week - here you go~! Transaction 1 8 boxes of Assorted crackers @ $1.66 (normally $3.99) 2 boxes of Assorted crackers @ $2.50 (normally $3.99) 1/2 # Broccoli Cheese salad from the deli Cooks Half Ham $24.07 1 avocado @

Ham Meal Plan

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Today's big purchase of the day was an 11 pound ham. (Yes, it was on sale...) This ham gives us over 10 meals worth of meat, and that is AFTER you remove the bone! Ham, bacon, pork - all is super to have as a meal for the family and here is my favorite thing about it: the FDA forbids the use of any hormones, etc in pork. This makes it healthier than chicken or ground beef! The first thing you may notice, is the simple fact that my ham is sliced. If you shop in the morning, before 9am, you can take a ham to the butcher counter and they will slice it for you! The smallest they can do would get you about 3 slices to the inch, for the whole ham. Then, they wrap it in a tray with plastic for you and you are all set to check out. This simply ROCKS (and I will tell you why...) If you get there after they have started cutting the raw meats, they will NOT slice the ham for you - they don't want any possible contamination issues (understandable). This can NOT be done in the deli depar

Crock Pot Split Pea Soup Recipe

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Here is the recipe I promised you - GREAT to start in the morning and then enjoy at dinner time! Ingredients: 1 (16 oz.) pkg. dried green split peas, rinsed 1 meaty hambone, 2 ham hocks, or 2 cups diced ham** 3 carrots, peeled and sliced 1/2 cup chopped onion 2 ribs of celery plus leaves, chopped 1 or 2 cloves of garlic, minced 1 bay leaf 1 tbsp. seasoned salt (or to taste) 1/2 tsp. white pepper pepper 1 1/2 qts. hot water Layer ingredients in slow cooker in the order given; pour in water. Do not stir ingredients. Cover and cook on HIGH 4 to 5 hours or on low 8 to 10 hours until peas are very soft and ham falls off bone. Remove bones and bay leaf. Mash peas to thicken more, if desired. Serve garnished with croutons. Freezes well. Serves 8. **I like to leave the ham out and stir in diced smoked sausage or kielbasa in the last 30 or so minutes of it cooking

Candy Recipes!

Quick and easy candy recipes for you today, I love to have packages of some of these made up and ready to go so I am prepared for the person that just stops by and has a little giftie for us. This way I am not caught off guard! Hands down, the best prices I have seen on bark, nuts and general candy supplies is Farm N Fleet this time of year. GREAT prices compared to the grocery stores and good quality. Enjoy! Tips on cooking candy in your microwave 1. Use containers 2 to 3 times larger than quantity to prevent boil-over. 2.Watch candy closely because a microwave oven cooks sugar very fast. 3. When using a candy thermometer, remove candy from oven first, unless you are using a specially designed microwave candy thermometer. 4. Stir candy during cooking so heat is equalized and candy cooks smooth. PINK ICE · 2 blocks white almond bark · ¼ tsp. Peppermint extract · 3 drops red food coloring · ½ cup crushed peppermint candy Melt the bark in Tupperwave casserole until smooth.

Holiday Happiness

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There are so many fun things to do with the kids this time of year! Even something as simple as letting them be the artist for a batch of cookies. (12 is about enough for the attention span of a four year old...). Today we set up a "decorating station" and she got busy while I did a few other things in the kitchen. Wilton has nice squeeze bottles of cookie icing,that cost an arm and a leg at the store, so I was delighted to see a few at our local Liquidators for less than $1! Simply zap five seconds in the microwave and they are an easy squeeze for little hands. **Keep in mind that these high sugar items keep VERY well - I didn't have to buy any this year because we had an abundance from last year. There are a lot of other things you can do too - the Madison area is fantastic! Try going to look at holiday lights at Olin Park, putting on holiday music and dancing silly, making a popcorn garland for outdoors to feed the animals, go to Olbrich Botanical Gardens and chec

Meal Plan Monday

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I have been pretty sick with this pneumonia thing and not really wanted to eat, let alone cook. I DO love the colder weather and all the yummy soups that I seem to crave with it...my mouth is already watering for the selection of the week - I add finely diced carrots and some smoked sausage to it. YUM! Here is the list: Breakfast will include: -yogurt with granola -cold cereal -Scrambled eggs and sausage links -Fresh fruit -oatmeal (It's getting colder...) Lunches as normal (sandwiches, soup, left overs, tappas plates) and for dinner... Monday - Crock Pot Split Pea Soup (recipe coming) Tuesday - fridge clean out! Wednesday - meatless night - grilled cheese sandwiches & tomato soup Thursday - Cheddar Beer Soup Friday - Fish Fry? He has the night off...this happens very rarely. Saturday - a holiday party to go to - we are bringing Hormel Hot Dip Sunday - cheeseburger casserole (using ground turkey). What are you going to feed YOUR family this week?

Free recipe book!

My friend Katrina over at the Klauer review has a recips book giveaway...hurry! it ends 12/15! http://theklauerreview.blogspot.com/2010/12/make-it-fast-cook-it-slow-ends-1215.html

What if there were no double coupons?

One question asked at my coupon class - what would your monthly budget be like if you couldn't double coupons? EXCELLENT question! I said: The same. $100/month for food and personal care items. A biggie with a lot of people is to meal plan, which I already do - and I cleverly work around the meat deals with the help of my trusty chest freezer. Here is how I would do it- 1) Cut down on meat. I have said before that my husband is the original "meat and potatoes" guy. If he could eat a steak with mashed potatoes and gravy every night for dinner - he would die happy. Just one thing - it's not good for you! (according to the American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, American Cancer Association...) Even though I shoot for $1.99 a pound or less on meat, it could really be stretched! Just because a recipe says one pound of ground beef -- doesn't mean you have to USE one whole pound! You can add filler like rice or beans to that burrito mix, more ve

Copp's this week

OK, I never made it to Copp's for that beef roast last week, but that is OK as we have plenty of meat in our chest freezer right now! I LOVE the fact that a lot of stores have their sale information online as we haven't seen our Sunday paper yet, and might not see it for quite some time thanks to the blizzard. Considering the fact that it is STILL snowing, I am not holding my breath, LOL! Here is what jumped out at me from the online flier - with coupon match ups. The first thing that caught my eye is the 4 day sale on Kelloggs-Eggo-Keebler items.$1.68 when you buy 8 - use $1 off 2 Toasted or Eggo coupons and they are as low as $.68 a box when doubled! This is a GREAT price to stock up on crackers for those holiday cheesballs, layered hot dips and more. Now, the regular ad: Produce deals You know I shoot for $.99 a pound or less for fresh fruits and veggies - here is the selection this week: Granny Smith, Red or Golden Delicious apples $.99/# Green beans on sale for $.99/