Every Day

Under The Weather Does Not Stop Me

I woke up this morning with a pounding headache. Tylenol does not take it away. But I am trying not to let it interfere with what I need to do today. 

So I am taking it easy and not doing any heavy work just little odds and ends around here.

This morning I baked some homemade blueberry muffins. I had about a cup of blueberries in the fridge left from doing some smoothies.

I was going to sew a button on Hubby’s shirt that came loose but Hubby did it before I had a chance. I love a man who can make his own repairs. 

I am getting a small grocery list together for tomorrow. Top’s is running PI deals. They have a white meat chicken pie that we have been wanting to try but not at full price. With coupon, they are $ 3.14 tomorrow. I also have some deals that I want to pick up.

The beef barley soup that Hubby and I made yesterday turned out to be the best we have ever made. So that will be dinner again tonight.

I am also working on a project that organizes all of my usage books for my kitchen appliances. Instead of stacking them in a drawer and having to go through the stack to find what I need, they will be organized so that I can lay my finger on anything quickly. I am hoping to get it done today. I will post a picture if I do. 

My order of 80 rolls of toilet paper for $ 40.14 arrived today. Down in the stockpile it goes. These are large rolls.

Well, I finished my project. All of the kitchen appliance usage booklets have been put in this Pendaflex File. Inside it has a folder for every letter of the alphabet. Everything is filed alphabetically according to what it is. For example: My Kitchen Aid mixer info is filed under M for Mixers. My Rice Cooker is under R for Rice. Now I will be able to easily pull the booklet when I use an appliance. 

I didn’t get as much done as I wanted today because of my throbbing headache. But at least the day wasn’t totally wasted.

Did you have a productive day?    

Every Day

How Is Your Sunday Going?

Mine is wonderful! It is a beautiful cold, sunny day. I was up at the crack of dawn this morning enjoying my coffee and then going out to run errands while everyone else was sleeping. Seriously there was no one on the roads. 

I stopped at Top’s to fill my gasoline tank up using my $ .60 per gallon discount paying $ 2.08 a gallon. I ran into the market just to get a Buffalo News so that I would have an extra set of inserts.

Then it was off to Rite Aid to pick up a prescription and a 100 ct. bottle of Tylenol on sale for $ 9.03 and  I used my $ 8.00 RA Bonus Cash that was loaded to my card to defray the cost to $ 1.03. 

So I spent $ 4.03 including the newspaper out of my  $ 75.00 grocery money so far this week.

Last stop was at Burger King to purchase 2 Sausage, Egg and Cheese Croissan’wiches and 2 Hash Browns. I had a BK gift card in my wallet that I thought only had a couple of dollars on it. It paid for breakfast and still has $ 9.77 for next time. That made me happy!

After breakfast I had to quickly get my beef eye round roast into the crock pot along with some onion, beef broth, and an au jus packet. I will be cooking that all day to have sliced beef on a weck for dinner. I have made this recipe before and Hubby loves it. It is not very appetizing looking right now so I will take a picture after it cooks.

Then I checked my e-mail and did some computer work, one of which is this blog, while also watching the soccer on TV. 

So far so good. Now it is time to re-organize the stuff under my kitchen sink. I want less under there and more in my stockpile. I just need the essentials. So I am off to do that.

Here is the results from my organizing under my sink. Nice and neat and simplified. All I have to do is put the recycle bucket back on the left hand side in front of my grease jar. Right now it is soaking.

The rest of the afternoon was spent watching a few You Tube videos.

Dinner turned out to be delicious. Here is one of the beef on a weck that we had. 

The au jus that you see on the roll was so scrumptious. I have a crock pot full because I cooked the eye round roast in it. Eye round is a tough meat so it needs cooking in the crock pot to tenderize it. It was melt in our mouth good.  

The au jus is so good that I am going to use it for the base of a crock pot beef barley soup for tomorrow night’s dinner. Hubby and I will team up tomorrow morning to make that from scratch.

I am tired tonight. I feel like I am in a fog. Perhaps the daylight saving time is affecting me. So I am off to bed early.

Did you all have a good day?

Every Day

What I Did To Avoid Going Out In The Car

UPDATE: The fajita seasoning was delicious and very similar to the packet mixes. So this recipe is a keeper and now I will go fill up my spice bottle. I did leave the sugar out of it though and I added about 1/2 cup of water to make a sauce. I also used low sodium bouillon powder instead of the cube.

I have been working very hard on a project all day. Before I started I took some chicken out to thaw for dinner. Hubby wants chicken fajitas. When I searched in my pantries, I could not find any Fajita Seasoning Mixes.

I did not feel like leaving my project to go out to the market. So I just googled a recipe and made some. I knew those extra glass spice jars would come in handy. I only made what the recipe called for which did not fill up the spice jar. But that is a good thing since we haven’t used it yet. If we like it then I will make more to fill the jar.

It was so easy and the recipe is Fajita Seasoning Mix.
Here’s hoping that it is delicious! And if we like it, it only took pennies to make. 

Do you have a fajita seasoning mix recipe that you would be willing to share?

Every Day

A Buffalo Fish Fry

When we moved to the Buffalo area, I had no idea that fish fries were such a big item. However during Lent, almost every restaurant and take out place has fish fries on Ash Wednesday and on Fridays. 

The first time we ordered one, I was in shock at how big the portions were for one individual person. Hubby and I would order 2 dinners and would each get a fish fry, 2 sides, a roll and butter, lemon wedges and tartar sauce. It soon became evident that it was way too much food. So we quit ordering the 2 fish dinners and just get 2 fish fries. And that is why we only eat a fish fry on the days we get them. It is plenty of food, almost too much. We have at times saved some for the next day. They reheat well. 

We just finished our fish and it was so delicious!

Are your fish fries in your area this big?

Every Day

Frugal Things The Past Couple of Weeks

It’s been a frugal couple of weeks in our household. These are the things we have been doing frugally:

– Spent very little of our grocery budget the past couple of weeks.

– We have been eating out of our freezers so that we will have room for our $ .79 a lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts from Zaycon the end of this month.

– I am back to hanging the laundry in the basement now that I feel better.

– The Buffalo News delivered us the Sunday, February 25th edition on March 4th. I called and they brought us a March 4th edition. I asked that they bring a full newspaper since it was only the white pages that were February 25th. They did so I ended up with two sets of all 4 inserts for that Sunday. So I didn’t have to buy an extra paper. Evidently we were not the only people who got the week before edition. I can only wonder how that happened.

– I received a $ 6.00 rebate in the mail.

– We did change our car and auto insurance to a new company and ended up saving almost $200. Since there is no cancellation fee at the old company, we are expecting a pro-rated refund from them shortly. It will be nice to have our auto and homeowners insurance due the same day every year.

– With the exception of going to the grocery store and hair salon, we have pretty much stuck to home. This has saved us gasoline. I do need to get gas soon since I haven’t filled the car up since January. I will be using my $ .60 off per gallon discount at Top’s.

– We have been decluttering the house and setting aside what we no longer need for the community garage sale.

– We have not been out to a restaurant in a very long time. We will get take out tonight though. We do this on most Friday’s during Lent.

– Hubby has been saving a $50.00 Home Depot gift card that he received as a gift to help buy a new mailbox once the ground is unfrozen enough to put it in. Then we can take out the ugly post that the town put in. I have a $ 5.00 off coupon that will help defray the total cost also.

– We have been eating up every leftover in this house. Right now we only have some enough for lunch for one person which is the apple chicken sausage skillet that I made last night. 

– I need to redo the closet in our largest guest bedroom. Lots of West’s outgrown toys need to be given away to our neighbor’s little boys. Then I will set the closet up with necessary things for guests like spare sheets, blankets, pillows, etc. I needed some containers to do this and I found them in the right colors at Dollar Tree. So cost was only $5.00 for 5 of them. As you can see it is a hot mess of games, toys, Hot wheel tracks, blankets, and out of season clothes.

– After a number of telephone conversations, I finally got a medical bill corrected to my benefit.

– I cleaned up a big spill in the kitchen with reusable rags.

– I have been listening to You Tube videos while organizing. That is how I learn something new every day. 

– I continue to use my laundry eggs in my HE to wash the clothes. When I do use the dryer I am using my dryer balls.

– I have been taking naps when I need them so that my mind is fresh to do everything as frugally as possible.

– We have been making full use of our Netflix membership by watching 4 movies a month. We just watched “Our Souls at Night.” We never go to the movies or rent elsewhere. Between Netflix, Amazon Prime, and You Tube, we have plenty to watch.

– I made a homemade chicken casserole for my sick neighbor.

– I’ve been collecting vegetable scraps and peelings. I made a pan of vegetable stock with them. I froze flat in meal size portions.

– I made a few loaves of banana bread with really ripe bananas. I froze them for our Sunday family breakfasts.

Have you done anything frugal lately? Please feel free to share in comments.

Every Day

Monday’s Shopping

Tomorrow is Senior Citizen 6% discount day at Top’s but it is supposed to be nasty weather. So I decided to go today instead. 

Bananas were on sale for $. 49 a lb. The mushrooms were $1.34 and were needed for dinner tonight. Hubby is grilling a 1 and 1/2 inch thick NY strip steak( from my freezer) that we are going to share. I love sauteed mushrooms on my steak. I will be baking some potatoes and making a salad.

The Rana Fettucine($2.)and the Bob’s Red Mill Unbleached All Purpose flour($1.99) were on sale but after MQ and store Q they were free. The milk was $ .99 with store Q. The yogurt, the 16 oz. Muuna Cottage cheese, the Sure deodorant and the sun dried tomatoes were  free after MQ and store Q’s.

The bacon bits and Very Berry Cheerios were full price. Those were a miscalculation on my part. I had no idea we were out so I couldn’t wait for a sale. But when they go on sale again, I will stock.

The ice cream($ 5.99) was on B1G1F sale. The Lean Cuisine was on sale for $2.00. My total OOP was $ 18.16. I may make one more trip this week to get some more of the free items if I have time. I have a $75.00 per week budget for groceries so I have $ 56.84 left for the rest of the week.

Did you get any good deals this week? Please share with us.

Every Day

Organized Spices

My spice cabinet has been a mess forever. The bottles were all different sizes and shapes and it did not look very neat. Actually it drove me crazy especially when Hubby wouldn’t put them back where they belonged. So I spent some time and money this week organizing the spices, hopefully, for the last time.

I purchased square spice jars here. They came with  a few labels but most of the ones I needed were not with the jars. So I purchased a large label collection
here. It has blank labels and labels that I could use in my pantry also. It is an awesome collection!

I also purchased an expandable spice shelf for the first shelf here.  I already owned the other spice shelf on the second shelf. 

I just emptied my old spice jars into the new ones. I attached the proper label each time I did one. Large spice jars that didn’t get emptied are now in quick access storage so that I can lay my hands on them easily when I need to refill.

What I like about the way I arranged them is that I can see each and every label and they are in alphabetical order. Hubby has promised to let me get out the spices when he uses them. That way this will stay organized.

The ideal for my spices would have been a drawer with special shelf inserts made for the spices. However I do not have a large drawer near my stove which is where I use the spices so this was the next best alternative. I am extremely happy with how it turned out.

I hope you all are having a great weekend! 

Every Day

Lamb Roast

As most of you know, Hubby and I have been married more than 50 years now. One of the first recipes that I cooked for us was a lamb roast. Hubby has absolutely loved it ever since. So I surprised him and roasted it today for dinner.

My SIL gave me “The Children’s Hospital of Buffalo Cookbook” for my bridal shower gift in spring of 1967. I knew nothing about Buffalo at that time so it is amusing to me that I now live near Buffalo. It was the first cookbook I got and I have used it all these years. It fell apart but I still use the recipes that I learned to love and that taught me to cook. I had no idea how to cook or bake when I said “I do”.

So today’s dinner recipe is in that book for Lamb Pot Roast. However from the first time I cooked it, I roasted it in the oven and tweaked the recipe a little bit to accommodate that. Here are the ingredients:

1 leg of lamb
2 tsps. salt
1 tsp. of oregano
1/2 tsp of pepper
1 minced garlic clove
1 can of beef consomme
1 small can of tomato sauce

I brush the lamb with some oil. Then I sprinkle it with the salt, oregano, and pepper. I mix the rest of the ingredients in a bowl and pour just enough to wet the roast on it. Then I pour the rest of the sauce into the pan. I roasted it at 325 degrees for about 2 hours. I baste the roast every 25 minutes or so. This roast was a small one- about 3 lbs. and only had a small bone. It cooked to medium. You can thicken the gravy but it was thick enough for us tonight. I always put some little potatoes in for Hubby. He loves them with the sauce spooned on them. We both love the sauce spooned on a slice of lamb. It was so delicious and tender tonight.

The pics show the roast resting for a few minutes after I took it out of the pan. The other pic is of the pan with the potatoes and sauce still in it.

Did you cook a favorite for dinner tonight?

Every Day

I Am Loving Walmart

Today I went to Super Walmart to do my weekly  grocery shopping. I only got the few things that we  really needed. I am pretty well stocked on just about everything else.

Because my regular supermarket, Top’s is so expensive except when items are on sale, I have decided to shop more and more at Super Walmart and Aldi’s.

This week I only needed the above items and I was so surprised at the prices which I have put on my lowest price list that I am updating with current prices. This is what I purchased:

– 1 Mylanta – $ 6.97

– Romaine Hearts(bag of 3) – $ 2.28

– 1 Cucumber – $ .54 

– 1- 2lb. bag of Wild Caught Salmon – $ 7.52

– 2.33 lbs. of Bananas – $ 1.03

–  1 Equate Nasal Spray – $ 1.88

My total OOP was $ 20.22. That leaves $ 54.78 left for the rest of the week.

I was so happy to find this frozen salmon there. I have been paying a whole lot more for it elsewhere. I like these portions for lunch or dinner and sometimes with breakfast. They had the cheapest price I have found for the romaine lettuce and cucumber. 

I also purchased the above pictured 4 packs of dish towels to replace some of the ones that are worn out. They have improved these towels so that they are thicker and more absorbent. They cost $ 4.97 for each pack for a total out of our Other Budget of $ 10.74 including tax. We use brown to dry our hands in the kitchen and green to dry dishes and pots and pans. 

I know some people hate Walmart but we all have our likes and dislikes. Right now it is working for me. 

Do you shop at Super Walmart for any food? What is your favorite item that you always buy there? Mine has great produce. When Aldi’s produce is looking a little old, I always know that SW will have good looking produce. I also know that I can get produce reasonably priced at Niagara Produce but today I wanted one stop shopping.  

Every Day

Are Warehouse Clubs Worth The Money You Pay For Membership?

This is a question that I have been wrestling with for a long time. I wasn’t going to renew my membership a year ago and then I did. 

My membership is due to be renewed tomorrow. I have decided to not renew it. After keeping track of the mostly basic items that I bought like olive oil, rice, floss, liquid soap refills, etc., I have determined that I didn’t have enough savings to even equal the $55. membership fee I paid for the year.

There are so many good options for getting rock bottom prices in other stores and on Amazon that I don’t need the warehouse club anymore.

I can get meat cheaper through Zaycon Fresh, bulk sale buying from Niagara Produce, grocery store sales, and my local meat market.

Produce is cheaper at Aldi’s and Niagara Produce and I don’t have to buy it in such large quantities.

My Super Walmart carries a lot of bulk items at great prices. Krusteaz pancake mix is one that I buy there all the time in a huge bag. It stays nice and fresh for us because I transfer it to an airtight container.  

Best Buy and Amazon give B.J.’s a run for their money on electronics. B.J.’s would be great for tires but they do not offer the off size ones that we need.

They offer a very limited supply of vitamins. But we get ours either at Walmart or Puritan Pride.

Shampoo and conditioner is cheap at Walmart or with a coupon at a drugstore sale. My latest stockpile of those was built for free at drugstores. The same goes for deodorant and toothpaste. 
It used to be the best price for Hubby’s razor blade refills. But now so many places have refills like Daylogic at Rite Aid that fit Hubby’s Mach 3 razor. Dorco and other online shopping places beat those prices too.

They do carry discounted gift cards but there are many places on line where you can get discounted ones.  

I will miss my discounted stamps but I only save pennies on them and we use them rarely anymore.

They have a good book selection but my library is free.

Except for socks, I don’t buy clothing there. Socks I can buy cheap at Walmart or Target.

I finally realized that I don’t need the warehouse stores anymore.

How about you? Are you still shopping at the warehouse store? Are you actually saving money above what you pay for your membership. If you are not sure, track it.