Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Bagel Baking

I made bagels a few months ago. When I made them, Bo didn't think that it was something that could be done at home. He liked them but I have not made them. I bought the raisins and decided to make them. Once again they were a hit. Making the dough in the bread machine is the easy way.

Menu 1/29

We have been eating this week but I forgot to post my menu.

Monday - leftovers which we had plenty of
Tuesday - Chicken broccili casserole
Wednesday - Chili Con corn pie
Thursday - Spinach Pie aka Spanokopita. I found a recipe and found phyllo. This is one of my husband's favorite things to eat and so I am blessing him by making this.
Friday - Just Miss K and I so it will be leftovers or mac 'n cheese
Saturday - Lentil something probably a new recipe for Lentils & Spinach Indian style
Sunday - Pizza

Monday, January 29, 2007

Needs Only

Here is a quick update. I had a friend in town for a few days which was fun but she needed to do some shopping so of course I had to take her because otherwise she would get lost.

Yesterday I did buy 2 J. Crew skirts for 65 cents at the market. Okay, that is a good deal. I am not sure if I really needed them or not. I am trying to wear more skirts so I could possibly say that for that reason I need them. I had seen this Little Me frog outfit when we were home this summer but for about $1. I decided to go ahead and get it.

I am glad the month is almost over. It has been hard at times but the good thing is when I look at what we spent this move we did save some money. The big area where so far we have saved is on groceries.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Broccoli Pizza

One of my favorite little pizza shops makes a yummy white pizza. I used to go there most days for lunch when I was working in that town. Well, now I am a long way from there and have created my own recipe for broccoli pizza.

Saute broccoli, onion, and garlic.
Put a bit of olive oil on the dough, add some Italian spices and some Parmesan cheese. Add the broccoli mixture and top with cheese and bake.

As you can tell, we had already eaten half of this by the time I remember I wanted a picture.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Household Meme

I decided to join the fun that Sallie at A Gracious Home invited us to join. A meme about your household

Aprons – Y/N? If Y, what does your favorite look like?
Yes, right now my favorite is a denim one from San Francisco. I have a cute Raffles apron and a Laura Ashley one I found in an outlet.

Baking – Favorite thing to bake
Cookies - chocolate chip of course

Clothesline – Y/N?
I have a drying rack and also a hanging clip thing for all the socks.

Donuts – Have you ever made them?
As a kid, it was a snow day activity.

Every day – One homemaking thing you do every day

Freezer – Do you have a separate deep freeze?
No, but you would surprised at what I can fit in my tiny freezer.

Garbage Disposal – Y/N?

Handbook – What is your favorite homemaking resource?
I would probably say the internet.

Ironing – Love it or hate it? Or hate it but love the results?
Hate it but love the results.

Junk drawer – Y/N? Where is it?
Not really - not enough drawers here to allow one to be a junk drawer

Kitchen – Color and decorating scheme
I have cabinets that are a light beige colour. I have a big bookcase that holds the cookbooks, food, plastic containers. I have an oven which is unusal to find in kitchens here so that is a conversation point. I don't have a decorating scheme.

Love – What is your favorite part of homemaking?
I love cooking, finding new recipes.

Mop – Y/N?
Yes - dry and wet. I use the dry one often a few times a day.

Nylons – Wash by hand or in the washing machine?
I am almost tempted to say "What are nylons?" but I do have a few pairs. I usually throw them in the washer.

Oven – Do you use the window or open the oven to check?
I open the door. The window doesn't do much.

Pizza – What do you put on yours?
Pepperoni and mushroom or just a delicious white broccoli pizza

Quiet – What do you do during the day when you get a quiet moment?
My quiet time or catching up online

Recipe card box – Y/N? What does it look like?
I have a basket that the 3x5 cards fit in. I have two notebooks of recipes and documents on my computer.

Style of house – What style is your house?
Village housing -- middle floor of a 3 storey house. Ours is a year old so it is new. The typical 700 sq feet with 3 bedrooms.

Tablecloths and napkins – Y/N?
No, tablecloth as the table is also my desk, my sewing table, my craft table or whatever needs to be done. Yes, to cloth napkins. I fell in love with them when my option were single ply pink cocktail size napkins.

Under the kitchen sink – Organized or toxic wasteland?
Organized in a messy way. How is that.

Vacuum – How many times per week?
I have a Shark and right now we are waiting for a new battery. I wash the floor about 3 times a week.

Wash – How many loads of laundry do you do per week?
6 to 7 - I try to do one a day

X’s – Do you keep a daily list of things to do that you cross off?
I love being able to cross things off. I usually have a list on paper at sometimes it is just in my head.

Yard – Y/N? Who does what?
We don't have a yard.

Zzz’s – What is your last homemaking task for the day before going to bed?
Turn out the lights but I am trying to pick up a bit.

Needs Only Update

I have avoided the Gap, Old Navy, and OshKosh sweaters that are just $4. Twice even. That should count for something.

I have only really been buying groceries and for the most part stick to my list which are the things we need.

Oh, confession I went to the fabric district yesterday. I am searching for an idea and then supplies for the February scrapbooking swap. The theme is Chinese New Year. I found some ribbon and have an idea. I also found some other scrapbooking things, ribbons and embellishments. I don't know if I really needed all of those but it was a case of I have spent the 45 minutes to get here which was actually on my way home from Bible study I don't want to come back next week.

Just a few more days of this. It will be a test on Friday as a friend will be in town and we will spend a part of the day shopping.

Menu Week of 1/22

I know I am a bit late in posting the menu this week. It was one of those weeks that I just had a hard time thinking of what we were going to eat.

Monday - leftovers and whatever we can find
Tuesday - Three Bean soup
Wednesday - Scalloped Potatoes and Ham
Thursday - Lemon Chicken
Friday - probably out
Saturday - hmm, friends visiting so we will make something here because we can't go out 2 nights in a row

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Meals Week of 1/15

Monday - Spaghetti Broccili - On Mondays I need a quick easy meal as Bo goes downtown for men's Bible study and has to leave around 5:45.
Tuesday - Ham slices, baked sweet potatoes, and asparagus
Wednesday Sausage and barley soup
Thursday - Beef with snap peas
Friday - Lentils & Rice taco style tacos (If our company comes then I will add some shredded chicken)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Granola Bars

My husband, Bo, wanted me to buy granola bars. I am cheap at times and so instead of paying $26 for a imported box of granola bars I paid $26 for 1kg of oatmeal. I also bought honey. I came home and tried a recipe. We decided they were a bit too sweet. I made another full recipe today which was declared just right and Bo said I could sell it. I told him I would charge him.

Here is the recipe I started with

Chewy Granola Bars
1/2 to 1 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup or honey
1/2 cup margarine, melted
2 tsp vanilla
Mix together until well blended
Stir in
3 cups quick oatmeal
1/2 cup coconut
1/2 cup sunflower nuts
1/2 cup raisins
1/3 cup wheat germ
2 tbsp sesame seeds
1 cup chocolate or butterscotch chips

Press Mixture in a greased 9x13 pan. Bake at 350 for 15 to 20 minutes, or until lightly borwned. Cool complete. Cut in 24 bars. This is from Mennonite Country-style recipes.

Okay, so here are the changes I made - a bit less than 1/2 cup of sugar, less honey. I used butter instead of margarine due to my preference of butter and also the fact that you can't buy margarine here. Skip the coconut because that is something I don't really like. Skip the sunflower nuts because I didn't have any. Add salted peanuts because I had them. Put the raisin in half because I am not a big raisin fan. Skip the sesame seeds. Keep the chocolate chips though I added less than a cup. I just broke it into pieces.

It does make a great snack and much less than the hard to chew granola bars that you buy in the store which for us are imported.

Day 9 & 10 Needs Only

Yesterday was Day 9. I went to the grocery store and bought some snack gifts for friends we will be meeting later this week. I also bought sticker books for the children with an extra for Miss K. The extra might not have been a need.

Today is Day 10. I again went to the grocery store but before I stopped there I stopped at an outlet store and bought a purse/bag that I didn't need but liked and it was a good price. Well, that left me with a limited amount of cash for the grocery store so I had to be careful -- bought grapes, laundry detergent, wipes, and some necessities that I needed.

I also picked up information on the Money Back program that is starting at the grocery store. Yeah, you don't need your Resident ID which I don't yet have hopefully we will get that soon. I don't know how much I will get back but since it is free I will join.

I will just add that the store is also doing that "special" pricing for members. I always hated it when the stores in the USA did that. Well, that has caught on here. I really do need to get a money back card. I have the form and will fill it for the next time I go to the grocery store.

Monday, January 8, 2007

Day 6, 7, & 8 Needs Only

Saturday - I went to the market, grocery store, and household store and stuck to my list - groceries and rechargeable batteries and a recharger.

Sunday - We stopped at the grocery store on the way home and I added a few things to my list - a little bag of chips because I was hungry and a bag of alphabet pasta for Miss K. I know you could say "it will be there next month" and that might happen but around here that doesn't always happen. The sweaters at the market were a one day deal. So sometimes you do have to buy it when you see it.

Monday - Stayed home. Did good except for the bid on ebay. I didn't win so maybe someone else will bid higher and I will lose. That also means that I didn't spend anything today.

Menu Week of 1/8

Monday - Pasta with Pesto
Tuesday - leftover Haystack
Wednesday - Chicken taco soup
Thursday - out for Chinese food
Friday - invited out for dinner

Friday, January 5, 2007

Day 4 & 5 Needs Only

Day 4 - It is easy not to spend money when you stay home. That is what I did yesterday. The one thing I did was offer to make a sandwich for my husband as he had some meetings and some errands to run. He took me up on that offer and we saved about $10 as that is what he normally spends for lunch. My husband like that I am doing this but he has not completely bought into this idea.

Day 5 - Again I stayed home. We did go out for dinner but our friends treated. My money saving venture today was to get the cloth diapers out that have been in a box since we moved and start using them. Maybe if I use them during the day I can make the bag last the rest of the month.

I will admit that I am doing some window shopping and starting to think of what I will buy in February.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Day 3 - Needs Only

If I stay home, I am not easily tempted but I had to go out. I had an appointment with the naturopath. I love, love Peppermint Mocha which is only available for a short time during the holiday season. There is a Starbucks in the same building as the naturopath. Peppermint Mochas area already gone. I checked and was even planning to get one which is a double no because I don't need it and I am also supposed to be doing a 14 day elimination of coffee, tea, sugar, and chocolate.

In the end I just paid for my visit, bought vitamins, and more tincure. Those are all needs.

Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Day 2 - Needs Only

Yesterday was easy. I didn't go out so I wasn't tempted to buy anything that I didn't need. Well, this morning I went to the grocery store. I had a list and did good buying what was on the list and what we needed. Okay, maybe we don't need all 3 Chicken broths this week but it was cheaper to buy the 3. Well, maybe it was cheaper because it has MSG -- aghh I didn't think to read the label.

Worketh Willingly

One of my projects yesterday was to make 20 notecards for a friend. She wanted them to fit in a business size envelope. The stamping was easy. Cutting all the paper and trimming it to fit the smaller size card was a bit of work. I am pleased with the finished product. I am also glad to be able to do these for my friend.

Monday, January 1, 2007

New Year's Goals

I know it is the time of year when everyone makes those resolutions. I decided to make a few goals.

Read 12 books and determine if they should be kept.
Reduce craft supplies through use or donating. Currently 3 boxes of fabric and approximately 1200 sheets of 12 x 12 paper.

Continue early morning quiet time

Exercise 4 times a week

There are more things but I am trying to limit this.

Meals Week of 1/1

Sunday, 12/31 Hoppin' Johns

Monday, 1/1 Pork & Sauerkraut

Tuesday, 1/2 Risotto

Wednesday, 1/3 Carrot Soup with bean dip & chips

Thursday, 1/4 Asian style beef stew

Friday, 1/5 Dinner with friends

Saturday, 1/6 Lentils & Rice Taco Style