Every Day

Happy Thanksgiving

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We wish you and all of your families a Happy Thanksgiving!

Every Day

Black Friday Shopping

Well, it won’t be long before Black Friday is here and all of the craziness and stress to get that most cherished deal. Here is a list of questions you should ask yourselves before you make a purchase:

1) Do you really need it? Or are you buying it just because it is a great deal?

2) Will your purchase really get used or will it end up as so many other things that you are not using?

3) If you are purchasing a gift for someone, will they really love it? Or are you buying it for them because it is a great deal?

4) Are you buying things that you really don’t need because they are cheap?

5) Are you trying to compete with the Joneses? Remember so many of the Joneses don’t have any money. 

6) And most importantly, can you pay cash for this purchase? Or are you putting it on a credit card because you have no cash? Do you really want to add more debt(stress) into your life? Mortgaging your future is not a smart thing to do. All those great deals that you think you have to have will end up costing you a lot more than you think when the interest accumulates on your credit cards. So will they really be a great deal? 

I am not Scrooge! I just want you to think about what you are purchasing and how it will affect your future.

If you have the cash, go for it! Just stay safe! It gets crazy out there. Personally, we will not be doing any Black Friday shopping. Our Christmas shopping was done a few weeks ago and there is nothing we need. Sure we have a lot of wants but they are long term goals.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Every Day

So Grateful This Week

I am so grateful this week for all of my family. Those who will be spending Thanksgiving with us and those who won’t. I love my sons, daughter-in laws, my granddaughter and grandson so very much!
I am also grateful for all of my readers of my blogs over the years. I hope that I have helped some of you just a tiny bit. Some of you have become great friends and some I just know from your comments. It’s been a wonderful almost 10 years since I started blogging. 

I wish all of you a wonderful Thanksgiving. I pray that those of you who are traveling have a safe trip. Enjoy your families, your turkey dinners, and maybe some football. Our Buffalo Bills will be playing on Thursday so I am happy about that. 

Before I get busy preparing for company, I want to give you our party mix recipe again. Hubby made a huge pot on Saturday.

Party Mix

1 Box of Wheat Chex
1 Box of Rice Chex
1 Box of Cheerios
1 Bag of Thin Pretzel sticks
3 lbs. of Mixed Nuts( no peanuts- Hubby doesn’t like them)

2 cups of Canola oil
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
1 Tbsp. salt (optional)
1 1/2 Tbsp. Garlic Salt

the cereals, nuts, and pretzel sticks in a large pot. Blend remaining
ingredients well. Then pour them over the dry ingredients mixing well to
ensure equal distribution. Cover and bake 1 hour at 250 degrees.
Uncover and bake for 1 hour stirring every ten minutes. Let cool and

tips: Hubby makes a double batch of sauce. He likes it better that way.
He blends the sauce in our Vitamix so that it blends really well.

What are you grateful for this week as Thanksgiving is on the horizon?

Every Day

Grocery Shopping This Past Week

I did a bit of grocery shopping this past week:


1 Turkey – $ .48 lb.- $ 6.29

1 Celery – $.77 

1 Perry’s Vanilla Ice Cream – $ 3.34

1 Mushrooms – $ 2.50

1 Organic Lettuce – $ 2.99

2 dozen Egglands Best Eggs – $ 3.00 for both after Q

1 Red Onion – $ 2.14

1 Top’s Chicken Broth – $ .99 after Q

1 Apple Juice – $ 2.29

2 SF Cool Whip – $ 4.38 for both

1 PF Herb Stuffing – $ 2.50 

1 Hellman’s Mayonaise – $ 2.99 after Q

Total OOP was $ 27.89 plus $ 6.29 for the turkey = $ 34.18. I found the mayonaise still in the car the next day so it is not pictured. I had to spend $ 25. in order to get the turkey for $.48 lb.


1 Turkey – $ .48 a lb. = $ 9.38 

1 Crest – $ 2.29 after Q

1 Primal Kitchen Avocado Oil Mayo – $ 7.99

1 Primal Kitchen Italian Dressing – $ 5.99

1 Green Olives – $ 1.99

2 Black Olives – $ 1.39 ea. = $ 2.78

Half Gallon Egg Nog – $ 5.29

1 Lay’s Poppables – $2.00

2 Skinny Pop – $ 2.99 ea. = $ 5.98

Total including tax before the turkey was $ 34.60 plus $ 9.38 for the turkey = $ 43.98. I had to spend at least $ 25. to get the turkey at $ .48 a lb.

Aldi’s was two trips: 

12 lbs. of Butter – $ 1.99 a lb. = $ 23.88

1 Prosciutto – $ 2.75

1 Sour Cream – $ .89

Total for both trips was $ 27.52.

I am shopped out. Except to go get another turkey at Aldi’s next week , I will not be doing much more shopping. So far I have purchased 3 different brands of turkey. I got a Butterball, a Top’s, and a Shady Brook. I will get a Honeysuckle White at Aldi’s. I want to see which one is the best. I have always cooked a Butterball for Thanksgiving because we really like them. But it is time to experiment again and see which we like best. 

Some of the things I purchased are for Thanksgiving and some are for the stockpile. I had to replace the ice cream for Thanksgiving that I had purchased since West ate some last weekend. I also have a big turkey so needed another package of stuffing mix.  

I will be back with a post on Monday but then I am taking the rest of the week off to get ready for company and to make our Thanksgiving dinner.

I am off of here to bake 2 loaves of cinnamon swirl bread and some chocolate chip cookies at my granddaughter’s request. Fortunately, I have some room left in the freezer to put them until Wednesday night. I hope you all have a great weekend.

Every Day

Frugal Things This Week

These are the things that we are doing frugally this week:

– Cashed 2 rebate checks at the bank totaling $ 12.21.

– Withdrew $500. in cash for certain expenses during the month of December. Cash is the easiest for me for groceries, gasoline, etc. to keep within a budget.

– Hubby wanted antipasto for dinner last night. We love to order this out in a restaurant and share it. But I had the fixings so I made it. It costs a lot less to make it than eating out and we could stay home in our nice warm house. We put our Italian dressing on after we put what we want in our bowls in case there are leftovers. We don’t like soggy leftovers. We had lettuce, red onion, prosciutto, salami, pepperoni, black and green olives, provolone cheese, and pepperoncini. It was delicious and there was some leftover for lunch today.

– I received a box of freebies from Samplesource. We use Bona products for our hard wood floors so I was happy with the hardwood floor Bona. I have never used the other one but we have tile on our bathroom floors so I will be trying it out this week.

– I wrote to Turkey Hill to let them know how much my grandchildren love their ice cream. They sent me these coupons and I was so delighted. We have double coupons up to $.99 here at both Top’s and Wegman’s  so all of the $.50 and $.75 ones will double. The eggnog will come in handy for Thanksgiving if I can find it.

– I purchased 2 more turkeys. One at Top’s for $.48 a lb. and one at Wegman’s for $ .48 a lb. I am all over cheap poultry. I will be purchasing one more soon.

– Remember back in August when our A/C went out. Well I thought Hubby had purchased the switch we needed to fix it but he hadn’t. He said he needed to take the bad switch out and look for a part # on it. So he waited until yesterday and did that now that we are using heat and not A/C. He found the part # and we found the part on Amazon for $ 8.49. It is a good thing he didn’t order the one he was looking at back in August. It was the wrong one! I used a free to me Amazon gift card to pay for it. When it arrives later this week, Hubby will install it. The company who wanted to install it was going to charge us $239. for the part and labor. We said no thanks! What a rip off that would have been! 

– I brought a bag of cans and bottles to Fast Cash to get the deposits back. I received $ 1.25. 

– Hubby made homemade teriyaki salad dressing. 

– We had West stay with us for the weekend. We stayed in all weekend because it was so cold. No eating out. One night I made grilled chicken breasts and he loved dipping it in SF honey mustard sauce. But he said the best part of the meal was the ice cream sundae I made him for dessert. He had vanilla bean ice cream with chocolate syrup, whipped cream, maraschino cherries, and pastel sprinkles. It was definitely cheaper than buying one.

– I picked up 12lbs. of butter this week for $1.99 a lb. I got 6 yesterday when I shopped at Aldi’s. Then today on the way home from the bank I stopped at an Aldi’s for 6 more. Aldi’s has a limit of 6 each trip. I use 30-32 lbs. of butter a year so I always buy it when it is at a rock bottom price this time of year. It freezes really well. I will be getting more.

That is all we have done since last Friday when I posted our frugal things. Have you done any frugal things in the past 4-5 days? Please share so we can all learn from you.

Every Day

Zero Waste Meal Planning

This is something that I have gotten very passionate about. I try to never waste one morsel of food. Can I do it all of the time? Sometimes, something gets away from me but not recently.  

Every night after dinner, I decide what we will eat the next day. It all comes from my stockpile of food that we have in the house. That is how I plan. I pull our menu from ingredients on hand. I rarely plan a menu and then go and buy those ingredients. The way I do it let’s us eat at rock bottom prices because I buy meat and other ingredients in bulk when they are at their lowest prices. Now that I have my Butterball turkey for Thanksgiving, my concentration will be on Shady Brook & Top’s turkeys this month because I will never get meat cheaper than $.48 a lb.

I start my meal planning by looking at what food we have in the fridge because that is the most perishable food. Produce can get overripe if you don’t keep track of it. I want to make sure that our produce $’s are not being wasted. For dinner, West requested grilled chicken that he could dip in honey mustard sauce. That is a staple that I keep for him in our fridge. He also wanted French Fries which will come from our freezer stash. I will make a salad using a leftover half a bag of lettuce, cucumbers, an orange pepper, some onion, and homemade teriyaki dressing that Hubby made for our teriyaki chicken salads last night. I will put some grapes that have the stems removed and have been washed in a bowl for anyone who would like fruit.  

Milk can go bad especially since we are not big milk drinkers. Now that Hubby is on my diet, I won’t be buying as much milk because he no longer eats cereal. However, when I see that milk is getting old, we make SF puddings to use it up. I have also thought about freezing it in smaller portions and just pulling out a little when we need it for something. 

For breakfast, I pulled leftover apple cinnamon waffles(first picture) that Hubby made from the freezer. I made scrambled eggs, some bacon(pulled from the freezer), and sausage. West, who is the only one who ate waffles(he demolished most of them), used pure maple syrup from our fridge on them. 

While I was pulling those things, I spotted the open jar of sauerkraut. I love eating a little of this just plain with my lunch.

I was thawing some shaved beef from the freezer and decided that it was not enough for those who might want lunch. So in this picture, you will see that I thawed another baggie of shaved beef to give me enough for West and I. Hubby doesn’t want lunch today. 

After the chicken is thawed for dinner, I will cut it in half lengthwise to make thinner cutlets which lets me portion control easier. After the three of us eat, there will probably be a little leftover to put on a salad in the next couple of days.

Tonight, I will go through this process all over again to make the meals for tomorrow. I always try to incorporate produce and leftovers into our meals first. Then I pull things from the freezer.

A recent article said that Americans throw out 40% of the food they buy. YIKES!  I can’t even imagine doing that. I would not want to throw my money away like that. Instead of spending the time to shop and throw it away, you might as well just burn it. That is essentially what you are doing.

This method keeps your food bills down and gives you extra money to spend on something else or to save for something you want or need. 

Do you menu plan from your ingredients? 

Every Day

Frugal Things This Past Week

These are the things we have done frugally this past week:

– I filled the gasoline tank on the SUV using points to get $.20 off per gallon.

– I washed two load of clothes and towels in the HE washer using minimal detergent. I dried the towels in the dryer using our wool balls (less drying time). I hung the clothing to dry. Only one piece of clothing needed to be ironed.

– I cooked all meals at home. We had homemade pizza, 3 nights of chuck roast with gravy( potatoes for Hubby and broccoli for me), SF BBQ Chicken with and Italian tossed salad, Teriyaki Chicken with Green Beans, and Taco salads.

– Hubby snow blowed 11.5 inches of snow. This is one job that we don’t have to hire someone to do.

– My sister called and we spent some quality time catching up on things. That was priceless.

– Hubby’s sister called and caught things up with him. That also was priceless.

– All of our Christmas shopping is done and wrapped and paid for with cash. 

– I told you that I was looking for a new tablet. I had been checking the Black Friday deals. However, I found one on the best deal ever. I ordered a Samsung Tablet which not only had a great price of $201.99 but I got a Free $50.00 gift card for ordering it. That $50.00 will be used in the future for something we need. 

– I baked some brownies because West is coming to visit.

– I quickly vacuumed the car since we had salty and sandy boots in it this week. I like to keep the car as new as possible.

– I was able to get off another drug which will save us $40. a year.

– I got 4 free books on Amazon Prime sent to my Kindle.

– I have been using the recumbent bike and the treadmill(which we managed to fix ourselves) to get my exercise this week. It is too cold and icy to walk outside. 

– I watched some You Tube shows while exercising. I love learning new things. 

– We not only watch food portion sizes but we watch household goods portion sizes. By that I mean, we don’t use any more shampoo than we need to wash our hair. We have found that a quarter size bit of shampoo is perfect for washing our hair. Using more would be a waste. We use just the right amount of dish liquid for the size of the job we are doing. We are mindful of these things and others like toothpaste, lotion, moisturizer, etc.

– We have been working on a 750 piece jigsaw puzzle for entertainment.

– I have been planning our meals out of our fridge and freezers. We had ZERO waste this week. Throwing food out is a huge money waster. 

That is it for this week. Comment and share what you did frugally this week. We would love to know.    

Every Day

My Day on Tuesday

We woke up to 10.7 inches of snow yesterday morning. But it continued to snow. We ended up with 11.5 inches. Here is a quick picture I took through a screen on our breakfast room window.

Hubby started his day off snow blowing the driveway because we had our yearly cardiologist appointments at 8:40 am. Our cardiology office had moved and is quite a distance from us now- about a 28 mile round trip. The traffic was horrid. It took us 25 minutes to go a half mile after we turned out of our subdivision. It took us an hour to get to the doctor’s office. It was the doctor’s first day in the new office so it was a learning curve for him with the new computer system. He said we were his first patients. We never got home until 11:15am. We both had good appointments and don’t have to go back for a year. The doctor was thrilled with my 50 lb. weight loss and took me off a medication which really made my day.

We did make a quick stop at CVS in another town on the way home. I was happy to get four large cans of the Abound Mixed nuts(no peanuts) for our Thanksgiving and Christmas party mix. They had the best price on these mixed nuts. They were $ 8.99 each for over a pound can.

We had not eaten breakfast before we left so we were both starving. I made us bacon, eggs, and some avocado for lunch. Hubby is now on my diet. I am giving away anything that he can’t eat. 

After doing the dishes, I went outside and shoveled the front porch which Hubby can’t do with the snowblower. It is bitter cold out and getting colder. Winter came in with a vengeance. 

In the afternoon, I did some cleaning, got the mail, and did some reading.

After getting a burst of energy, I organized my greeting cards. I used to keep them in file folders in a large file box. It was bulky, heavy, and I had to dig way down in to find anything. It just wasn’t working. 

So I purchased a greeting card box and organized it. 

It is going to be much easier to use. Everything is in there and there is room to expand. I am delighted with it. Little projects make me happy! So I will be doing a lot of them over the winter. 

Last night we watched some shows on TV which is something I have not done in months. Then it was early to bed since we got up so early. 

I hope you all had a good Tuesday.

Every Day

Thanksgiving Menu Planning

We thought we were going to be alone on Thanksgiving until my DIL in the Albany area asked me about it. She usually takes turns alternating between her sister and us for Thanksgiving. It was her turn to go to her sister’s. But because we were going to be all alone, they decided to spend Thanksgiving with us. I am truly grateful that she, my son, and granddaughter are going to come for a few days and spend it with us. We spent a few Thanksgivings alone and it just wasn’t the same.

So I want to make it wonderful for them but simple.
As I get older, it is hard to do all that work without a plan which includes doing many things in advance. 

So I made up my menu a few weeks ago and I have been slowly picking up things as I see them going on sale. 

Our menu is:

Turkey – Done
Gravy- Done
Mashed Potatoes – Done
Sausage Herb Stuffing – Done
Niblet Corn – Done
Broccoli Spears – Done
Pickles and Olives – Done
Pumpkin Pie – Done
Apple Pie – Done
Vanilla Bean Ice Cream- Done
Chocolate Milk
Ice Water – Done
Moscato Wine
Rum and Coke – Done
Beer – Done
Coffee with Flavored Syrups and Creamer – Done

As I bought the necessary items on sale, I marked them off of the list above. I purchased my almost 20 lb. turkey last Friday at Aldi’s for $ .87 a lb. 

I have everything I need in my stockpile to make the gravy and mashed potatoes. I purchased the herb seasoned stuffing cubes last week. I have plenty of butter, chicken stock, onions, celery, spices, and sausage to make the stuffing.

The broccoli and corn are in the chest freezer. The pickles and olives are in the pantry.

I purchased my pie crusts for both of the pies. I hate making my own and this is a time saver for me. I do have the apples, butter, sugars, and spices to make the apple pie. The cans of pumpkin, evaporated milk, sugar, eggs, and spices to make the pumpkin pie are all in the stockpile. The vanilla bean ice cream is to go with the pies. But it is also to make an ice cream sundae if my granddaughter desires one. I have chocolate syrup, whipped topping for the sundae and the pies, maraschino cherries, nuts, and sprinkles.

So I need to pick up the Moscato wine and milk for dinner and I am done purchasing everything. I have the beer and rum and Coke for drinks. 

I was going to have cranberry sauce but quickly figured out that no one liked it but me and I don’t eat anything that has sugar anymore. I was going to put rolls on the menu but decided that the stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn, and pies were more than enough carbs.   

I promised Alexa that I would make more cinnamon swirl bread(I brought some out on our trip and she loved it.), chocolate chip muffins and cookies for when they come too. Those things will all be made a week or so before they come and I will freeze them until we need them.

The pies will be made and baked the day before Thanksgiving. The rest I can handle on Thanksgiving day.  

I have a copy of the menu list above and will use it to mark what times I need to start things that day and cross them off the list as I do them. 

It is looking like the lowest price for turkeys in our area is going to be $ .48 a lb. at Wegman’s.  Top’s will price match that price. So I will decide whether to price match 2 at Top’s or spend $.87 a lb. for 2 more Butterball at Aldi’s. Once I have the 20 lb. one out of my freezer and in my fridge, I will make a decision and pick up at least two more turkeys. We continue to eat out of our freezer so that I have the room. I may even pick up a third one, roast it, and food saver the meat. I will never get such a low price on meat until next Thanksgiving.

In other news, with the exception of cash flowing three gift envelopes, all of my Christmas shopping is done and wrapped. I will go to the bank and get the cash for those gifts right after Thanksgiving for our family in Rochester. I took all of the gifts but one to Albany with me for that family. Alexa’s last gift arrived a few days ago, is wrapped, and ready to go home with them after Thanksgiving.  

Soon we will be hunkering down for the winter. It has been snowing all day here and we are supposed to get more tonight. The slower days of winter especially after the holidays will give me more time to blog. I will be taking some time off the blog while my family is here. I am so looking forward to that.

Starting in December, I will start telling you about our goals for 2020 and the direction the blog will take next year. I have tons of ideas.

In the meantime, I would love to know what the lowest price for turkeys are in your area. Feel free to leave a comment and share them.     

Every Day

Preparing For Thanksgiving

Being that it is a cold and dreary Saturday, I decided it was time for my refrigerator deep clean. I wipe out the fridge the day before I go grocery shopping each week. However twice a year, I give it a really good deep clean. Since Thanksgiving will be here in a few weeks, I decided it was time.

On the left side of the beverages, I keep any leftovers that we need to eat, meal prep, and our lettuce keeper. Those three containers that are stacked are our pork chops, diced potatoes and steamed broccoli leftovers from dinner last night that we will eat tonight. I love these containers for leftovers and for meal prep. They hold a lot and stack easily.

I take everything out so that it is empty. I use microfiber cloths and Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day to clean the entire inside. I take all of the shelves and bins out to clean in my sink with it. I like this cleaner because it has vinegar which gets rid of any smells that linger.

I am so happy that it is all done and ready to receive the things we need for Thanksgiving.