Sunday, January 24, 2010

Menu Plan Monday 1/25/10

For this week's menu, I am trying to continue the Eating from the Pantry Challenge and, also eat on the Weight Watcher's plan. My husband and I joined last week and we have been doing pretty well. I am incorporating some Weight Watcher's recipes this week. I am considering joining E-mealz and doing the point system plan. I will post on that if I decide to try that plan.

Here is our plan (I hope the links to Weight Watcher's recipes work!):

Cereal/milk, bananas,oranges, granola bars, yogurt, oatmeal

Sandwiches, Baked Lay's, pickles, yogurt, oranges, apples, leftovers


Lemon Chicken with Broccoli, fruit

Rotisserie Chicken over salad green, cantaloupe

Cheesy Chili-Mac

Garlic Penne Pasta, roasted vegetables

Baked potato, salad

Cheesy Chicken Carbonara with Fettuccine


To see other great menu ideas, head over to Menu Plan Monday at I'm and Organizing Junkie.

Have a great week!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Super Savings Saturday-Pantry Challenge Version

Well, this was the second week of our Eating from the Pantry Challenge. Last week we failed the challenge, but it was a difficult week due to a family medical emergency. We ended up having to eat out several times that week.

We did a little better this week. We haven't stuck completely to the meal plan, but we did pretty well. I did to to the grocery store four times. My goal was to only go once-per-week, but I went to Kroger to get the deals once and then went again yesterday because I didn't get my dinner plan together early enough so I grabbed a rotisserie chicken and built a meal around that. I also made a trip to Aldi's for produce and to Wal-mart for mostly non-food items that I had high dolloar coupons for and I didn't want them to expire (Electrosol, Snuggle, All, Heinz ketchup and Healthy Choice).

Overall, we are still doing well with the January grocery budget and I am counting $64 leftover in my grocery envelope for the last two weeks. My budget starts again today and I put another $100 in the envelope for the next two weeks. I hope to have a little more leftover at the end of the month.

Here are my shopping trips from this week:


I spent a total of $10.43 at Kroger. My total before coupons was about $43. My free items were the Healthy Choice entrees, Halls, Gatorade and Greek yogurt. (Sorry for the multiple pictures!)


My Aldi's trip was for the great deals on their produce. Unfortunately, they were out of the $0.99 pineapples and pears. My favorite deal was the Clancy's Peanut butter filled pretzels for $0.50/bag! I spent a total of $21.66 at Aldi's.

I also spent $12 at Kroger yesterday for a salad mix, Rotisserie chicken, soda and a chocolate bar. Not a good deal--that's what happens when you don't stick to the meal plan!

My Wal-mart trip was $24 out of pocket. Before coupons was $42. I didn't get a picture of that trip.

To see how other folks did this week, head over to these great blogs:

Money Saving Mom
--Super Savings Saturday

Southern Savers--Friday Finals

Also, check out all the great Eating From the Pantry Challenge posts HERE, HERE, and HERE.

Have a great week!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Menu Plan Monday 1/11/10

Due to a family medical emergency, I didn't stick with last week's menu plan very well. We did eat three dinners from the menu, but we were away from home a lot and ended up eating out about 4 times. Needless to say, we also didn't do well on our Eat from the Pantry Challenge.

Thank God our family member who has been gravely ill seems to be improving slightly. I would appreciate every one's prayers for my brother-in-law who is in the hospital with severe pneumonia and on a ventilator. He has improved slightly and we are encouraged.

So here is this week's menu which included meals we didn't get to last week:

Breakfasts: cereal/milk, granola bars, pancakes, bagels, toaster strudel, fruit and OJ

Lunches: leftovers, yogurt/granola, fruit


Hot dogs, home fries

Homemade tomato soup, grilled cheese sandwiches

Salisbury steak, gravy, rice, peas

Chicken stew, rice, salad w/ homemade dressing

Hamburger stroganoff, noodles, corn, fruit

Eggs, bacon, biscuits, OJ

Chicken Stir-fry (Voila meal)

To see more menu ideas, head over to Menu Plan Monday at I'm and Organizing Junkie.

Have a great week!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Eat From the Pantry Challenge

If you read my Menu Plan Monday, you know that I am participating in the Eat From the Pantry Challenge. Normally, I usually can't fully participate in these challenges. My 85 year old mom lives with us and going to the grocery store is a recreational activity for her! But the timing worked out for this challenge since she is going to be out-of-town for the next month or so visiting her sister.

After taking a complete inventory of my freezer and pantry, I came up with plans for at least 25 meals. These are my not-so-strict rules for my Eat From the Pantry Challenge:

1. I will purchase produce, milk, bread and a few ingredients to complete my meal plans.

2. I will put $250 into the grocery envelope and try to only spend half of that amount.

3. Any money saved will go into the "sinking fund" for home improvements.

4. I will go to the grocery store a maximum of once per week and get creative to substitute that likely "forgotten" ingredient or item.

5. I will continue to buy items from the store that are free or almost free.

I already had a challenge today. I had planned on having pancakes for dinner tonight. However, the weather here is so cold that we really wanted to have some hot soup. No problem! We still had plenty of veggies in the freezer and pantry. We made a pot of homemade vegetable soup and used beef bullion to flavor the broth. Delicious on a freezing day! We also made corn muffins with the last of my cornmeal.

A change of plans doesn't mean you have to run to the grocery store. Get creative and work with what you have!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Menu Plan Monday 1/4/10

With the start of the new year, I have made it a goal to get back to menu planning and coupon shopping. I am also participating in Eat From The Pantry Challenge with Crystal at Money Saving Mom. Yesterday, my husband and I did a complete inventory of our pantry and freezers. Last night I made a list of about 30 meals using what I have on hand, with just a few items to purchase through the month. I will just need a few ingredients and some fresh fruits and vegetables.

Here is what I have planned for the first week of the pantry challenge:

Breakfasts: cereal (I have 18 boxes on hand!), milk, granola bars, bagels, toaster strudels, grapefruit, OJ

Lunches: leftovers, PB&J sandwiches, lean cuisines


Pancakes, sausage or bacon, homemade applesauce and juice

Chicken Pasta Primavera
, homemade bread, salad

Dirty Rice, biscuits, fruit

Homemade tomato soup, grilled cheese sandwiches

Hotdogs, home fries, fruit

Salisbury steak, gravy, rice, peas


Be sure to check back later this week when I post my entire freezer/pantry inventory.

Check out other great Menu Plan Monday ideas over at I'm and Organizing Junkie.