Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Tighten the wallet

Yes I just randomly found this stroller on the basketball hoop one day.

Sooo....ya know that bathroom re do of ours?  

Like every typical venture...
 its more expensive and taking longer than we expected.
Much more of both actually.
There are always fun surprises,
especially in older homes.
But I guess those are the only ones that need to be redone right? 

After a initial freak out that lasted a good day,
we slapped ourselves on the face and are hunkering down the bank account.
TV might be on the chopping block next (we have Roku which has Netflix)

Soooo.....what to do?  What to eat?  How to freeze our funds?  

Well thankfully I returned our last formula we shall every buy in our life at Target for $36.

Enfamil might go out of business now that we aren't buying.  Wow.  

Good thing I usually switch to whole cows milk for our babies at around 11 1/2 months.

Sooo, what to do?  Yesterday I went to the LIBRARY.
I know I know, me at the library with three small kids is not my favorite place, but it was nice...ish.
Ours is pretty dang kid friendly and I'm pretending that nobody heard Paisley's screams and whines.  I thought about pinching someone else's kid to get the attention off of us.

And then when I went to check out our books, whoops, had to pay the $13 fine that I didn't know about.  I tell ya the library has it in for me.  Little scared that I can be trusted to return them, but here is try #452...

But the library is cool and peaceful and maybe one day I won't be sneaking snacks in there to keep the kids happy and worried we are gonna get kicked out.  


what to eat?  

Well, I put my thinking cap on, dusted off the cobwebs in my brain of when I fed our family on a budget (which we did for years...years...years) and then remembered there are a few more of us and that Luke eats way more than I do.  So here's what I have planned. 

The babysitters in our area are gonna be crying, but we need to stick to game nites, six flags (we have passes), the zoo, or splitting up.  Bless Red Box.

What's cheap to eat?
For my family of seven, if I can feed them for $10 or under thats great.
 The closer I get to zero is a pat on the back and I love to pat myself on the back. 

Homemade pizza.
Taco Salad
Tuna on Toast
(basic white sauce with drained can of tuna, served on toast...and peas)
fish sticks
Beef Stroganoff (ground beef)
fried rice (the asian kind)
Fried rice (my moms kind with pork and bacon)
top ramen
sloppy joes
homemade macaroni and cheese
paninis (fancy sandwiches)
A big huge sandwich from a baguette and then toasted on broiler
(thanks Emily C for that one)
grilled cheese and tomato soup
crockpot chicken chili
breakfast for dinner


for sides:
cut up cucumber (with lime and salt for the girls)

salad (salad is cheap)

for breakfast:
ego waffles (the store brands)

Oh yes and I almost forgot.  I took a trip to MY FAVORITE MIDDLE EASTERN GROCERY STORE that is in our area.  My first time to the one close to me and it was like saying hi to an old friend.  Got a big huge bag of spinach as big as one of my children for $2 and even saw a celebrity there (the husband of piper from Charmed, anyone remember who that is? What it piper?).  The cheapest place to buy produce.  But I also love Trader Joes and Costco and Walmart too.

I plan on doing some pre made foods (like Costco orange chicken...not children, hahaha I'm gonna laugh about that all day  ) cause even that is cheaper than going to McDonalds and I don't want to be in a looney bin.  

good bye convenience, 

okay folks, there's my game plan so far.  

wish us luck.

Here is the best pizza dough recipe for a large group (my family).  It required no rising. your welcome.
 I even put the leftovers in school lunches. 
Thank Jenny Fogg for this recipe. 

Jenny Foggs Pizza Dough
(Makes 2 cookie sheets)

2 T yeast

2 cups warm water

2 cups flour (can use wheat flour)
Mix – let sit for a few minutes

Then add:
1-2 tsp salt
3 T oil
3 T honey
Add flour to good consistency
(I had to do like 4 more cups of flour , add more 1/2 cup at a time)
**also really good to add 3 or 4 cloves of minced garlic to the dough 
(thats a tip from my sister Lindsey)

Cook at 425 for 10-15 minutes

Pizza Sauce

12 oz tomato paste
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup water
1 tsp minced garlic (or 2 cloves)
1 tsp oregano
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper


sara said...

We've tightened our wallet this past month. I've started using this app on my phone to track money and I love it. We've also limited our eating out (no more last minute, don't feel like cooking eating out), it helps the waste line too!!


Heather said...

I make a Taco Soup in the crock pot that seems pretty cheap(I've never added up the cost), but you would probably need to double or triple it. It's a pound of ground beef, two cans of pinto beans, a can of diced tomatoes, a can of whole kernel corn(drained), and a packet(or 1/4 cup if you buy in bulk) of taco seasoning. It's really filling for soup. It's more like taco chili. I love to put it in the crockpot before Church on Sunday so it's ready when I get home.

Crazy Lady said...

ooh yum Heather that sounds great. totally cheap too

Amber said...

Sloppy joes are cheap. Baked potato bar (maybe with some canned roast beef). Burritos (cheap style with just beans, sour cream, salsa and cheese. I ate those ALL the time growing up). And I bet that no peek chicken is pretty cheap to make. That's just a few of my cheap dinner ideas to add to yours. I hear ya on the budgeting. I gotta buckle down too and I didn't just redo my bathroom.

Amber said...

Oh sloppy joes were already on your list. Oops

Heather said...

Oh, on the TV note, have you hooked up an antenna to see what you can pick up? There's a website antennaweb.org that you can plug in your address, and it will show you what channels you can pick up with the different types of antennas. I get 9 channels with my little antenna, 3 of which are from PBS. One of them has cartoons on most of the time. If you're hooked on the DVR like I was, just buy a Tivo. I got one plus the lifetime service and still spent less than I would've paid for cable in a year. It will stream stuff like Netflix too. I haven't had cable in 2 1/2 years, and I haven't missed it. I made a list of what I watched, and most of it was channels I get with the antenna. Some of the other stuff was available online, so I watch it on the computer.

Shar said...

i think you meant to say orange chicken from costco....NOT orange children! are you guys into canabalism? that's sick!

Jenn said...

and buy your veggies and fruits at Sprouts... I'm sure I've probably already told you that!