Tuesday, April 21

Happy Earth Day

Here are a couple links to help you live greener from Lighter Footstep.

Ten First Steps Toward Lighter Living

Seven Stones of Simpler Living

I spent the day enjoying the weather and taking pictures with a friend at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden.

Adding Ads

I'm trying out the idea of running ads on my blog. What do you think? Let me know how you feel about looking at advertisements while reading this blog.

Monday, April 20

Kitchen Tip Tuesday - Freezing Bacon

I've found that most recipes which include bacon only call for a few slices. Rather than cook-up the extra for breakfast, I like to freeze the rest of the package. This way I don't have to buy bacon every time I need it for a recipe. It also allows me to stock up if I find it at a good price.

Wrap slices of bacon (two together, since most recipes call for an even number) between layers of wax paper and freeze in a freezer bag. When you need bacon, simply remove the number of slices needed. Chop or leave whole and cook from frozen.

For more kitchen tips visit Tammy's Recipes

Menu Week of April 20

This week's plan is subject to adjustments. Our friend Aleathea is visiting us and I'm not sure what we will be doing each afternoon, so I've tried to choose meals that I've made ahead or are easy to put together.

Monday: Salads

Tuesday: Sloppy Joes (I'm going to try making with ground turkey. I hope it will be just as delicious.)

Wednesday: Vegetable Lasagna (from the freezer)

Thursday: Brats

Friday: Homemade Pizza or Calzones (from the freezer)

Weekend: Camping? Eat out?

Monday, April 6

Supper This Week

Sorry I didn't post my meal plan for last week. I didn't really have much of a plan - or at least I thought - but we ended up eating meals at home all week! I'm still an advocate for having a plan though, so here is mine for this week.

Monday: mac & cheese (from freezer) & steamed broccoli

spinach salads with soup or sandwiches

BBQ chicken sandwiches & broccoli salad

pasta with sausage & spinach

sweet & sour chicken over rice (The recipe calls for meatballs, but I think I can substitute chicken with good results.)

Most of the meal ideas were taken from Kraft Food & Family Magazine Spring 2008. However, I'm using most of the recipes simply as inspiration and adjusting/substituting as I go.

Also, as you can see, I've planned meals with similar ingredients all week. This is a good way to make sure nothing goes to waste - like the baby spinach I need to buy & the fresh broccoli that's on sale.

Thursday, April 2

My Shopping Bag & Coupon Organization

In a previous post, I wrote about the produce bags I made, which made me think I should show you the rest of the items I bring shopping.

In the photo you can see the canvas bag that I try to carry with me when I go out shopping. Inside this canvas bag I keep several cloth bags (from Hornbacher's for you Fargo people), my coupon folder and shopping list, mesh bags for produce and my wallet (not pictured).

Having all this together in a tote really helps me to be prepared when I go shopping. I've noticed that when we just run out to get something, I often don't bring my tote along and I regret it. We end up with more plastic bags at home, I buy something I had a coupon for but didn't bring with, and I don't have a list, so we end up buying extra items and forgetting things we need.

This is a glimpse inside my coupon folder. (I always like to see how other people do things, so I figure other people do as well.) It is important for me to organize my coupons if I intend to use them, because if I can't find it, I can't use it.

I used an old planner that I couldn't bring myself to throw away. Then I punched holes in several large envelopes to match-up with the rings. I have 5 main categories which are represented by the envelopes (Grocery, Cold/Frozen, Health & Beauty, Home Care, & Misc.). Inside the envelopes I've used index cards with sub-categories to further divide the coupons.

Other items in my binder: calculator - handy for calculating unit prices; pen & paper for making notes; and my shopping list.

One other note: I try to "weed" my coupons at the beginning of each month to get rid of any that have expired and to file any strays.

Do you clip coupons? If so, how do you organize them?