Take the Pantry Challenge

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The next challenge starts January 2, 2018! I’ll be blogging it here as we go along.

The Pantry Challenge is something I practice twice a year (in January and July) as a kitchen discipline.

  • I use up what we have.
  • I save money on groceries that month.
  • I learn what ingredients our family really loves. Or hates.
  • I save time because I’m not spending hours grocery shopping during the month.

I’ve been doing this type of challenge every year since 2009. It’s become super successful for my family to offset our grocery spending and to refine our shopping habits to better suit our lifestyle.

Each time I set specific goals for the Pantry Challenge, like in December of 2013 when I spent 2-weeks cleaning out our cupboards to make room for healthier ingredients.

Pantry Challenge Archives

I typically keep a daily diary of how I feed my family of 8 during the challenge as a way of keeping record for myself as well as sharing with others some of the discoveries we make and lessons we learn. You can read through the pantry challenge archives to get a taste of what a it can be like.

Get the Pantry Challenge ebook.

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  1. I love this and I will be doing the challenge in July! Will be coming back for more tips.
    I also just finished a post on my blog about saving $on food, even though the blog has a slightly different theme, I am putting the pantry challenge post as a resource link. Please take a look and let me know if that may be not be OK

    Thank you,

  2. This is awesome. I’m so excited to start this. I just moved from a house (that had a pantry as well as a lot of cabinet space) to a small apartment with no pantry and not much cabinet space, and found myself with a lot of canned goods that I don’t have a place for! This is perfect way to get rid of those while saving money, which is what I need right now! 🙂

  3. I’m definitely going to be participating! I just finished doing a Pantry Challenge with a friend of mine, long distance! She’s in Alberta, I’m in BC! We did it from mid-November to mid-December, and it was great for me to be continually mindful of using what we have, and not zipping out to shop for more. We made the full “month” with only picking up produce, milk and cheese! I was also able to stock up my freezer with lots of great meals and meal components for the future! Christmas week, we spent a bit more time shopping, but now that the holidays have basically wrapped up for us, I’m glad to be able to commit again to eating up what we have, and spending less time in the grocery store! Like you, I love grocery shopping, but it can also be my downfall if I let it!

    Thanks for continuing the pantry challenges!

  4. Love your site! I just received 3 of your books yesterday, Christmas gift. So many yummy looking recipes! I so need to do this, and I may. My small chest freezer and refrigerator freezer are stuffed. Need to make room to try some of your freezer meals, ;).

  5. 2016. I am so in. We are stuffed to the max and now kind of broke. LOL. If I had any kind of indoor green thumb I’d be looking at raising cool weather veggies in pots. But alas, stuff only grows for me when it’s outside. 🙁 I’m looking forward to all sorts of ‘use the crumbs’ recipes. 🙂

    My first two weeks could probably just be frozen leftovers. LOL.

  6. I am so up to this, have actually been doing the pantry thing for about six months as i can and freeze a lot of my own produce over the summer

  7. I’m a few weeks behind, but we will be starting the pantry challenge in our family this week and I’ll be sharing all about our experience at my blog, as we’ve NEVER done this before! I’m excited and can’t help but chuckle at the odd meals I’m sure we will be eating in a few weeks haha 😉 Thanks for sharing your tips!

  8. Going to use up the rest of some flour I had bought during holiday season 2016, frozen milk, and the clearance chicken I bought last week and an Omaha steak set we were gifted. Going to focus on Keto type stuff for hubby and produce for the rest of us for our spending this month.

  9. Jessica,

    Thank you for providing this venue for us to continue the challenge. Hope you are feeling better soon.

  10. Again, Jessica, a big thank you for providing this venue for those of us who are so way overstocked that we need to keep going with the pantry challenge for yet another year!!!

  11. Thanks again for giving us a place to continue the challenge!

  12. Terry calkins says:

    Continuing on now. I did go to the store this morning for milk and yogurt. Got a good buy on lemons and a honeydew melon plus a stop at papa Murphy’s for a 10$ pizza and free cookie dough.
    Ham and broth from the freezer made a nice batch of navy bean soup which I shared with my mom. Roast beef from the freezer to shred and mix with BBQ sauce for BBQ burgers. We won’t need much cooking for a few days.
    Looking forward to the ongoing comments!

  13. I’m in for February!

  14. Stephanie M. says:


    B – Paul had cereal and a banana; I had one slice whole wheat raisin toast, yogurt, and strawberries

    L – Paul had the last piece of quiche from the freezer, leftover wild rice from the other night and leftover broccoli; I had a roast beef sandwich on whole grain rye and an apple

    D – Leftover pasta primavera

  15. Laurie in CA says:

    B – bacon, eggs and sprouted wheat toast (last slice from the freezer) for me, hubs had corn Chex
    L – I had l/o Senate Bean soup and carrots, hubs had l/o chicken enchilada casserole
    D – l/o steak from our dinner out last night

    I made a double batch of turkey stock from bones/carcass in the freezer and veggies in the bin past their prime. First time I made stock in the instant pot. I took some meatballs from the freezer to my daughter (she is still under the weather). I’m making good progress on the inside freezer.

    • How do you like using your Instant Pot for making stock? I have one, but don’t use it much. It’s easy for me to use the crockpot (because that’s what I’m used to)

      • Laurie in Ca says:

        I haven’t tasted it yet to see if I like the finished product. You run it on the soup setting for 30 minutes. I drained off the first batch and filled the pot up with water and ran the same bones/veggies through a second time. I combined the liquids into the biggest Tupperware bowl to chill so I can pull the fat off. I’ll let you know how I like it when I taste it.

        • Heather M says:

          I’m also very curious— just started using my new Instant Pot this week. I have chicken carcass w/some meat still on it and wondering about that. I too could run it twice, making soup with one batch and the meat maybe, or pulling the meat for another purpose. I usually just do it on the stovetop.

  16. Thursday February 1st

    B – fruit and yogurt toast and marmalade for hubby, rhubarb and raspberries for me with a toasted English muffin and marmalade – can you tell I made a batch of grapefruit marmalade yesterday?

    L – i had a ham salad (last of the salad and the last of the beets), hubby ate lunch out – a brie and apple croissant and a latte

    S – pot roast (from the freezer) with home-grown veggies (alsofrom the freezer), ice cream for dessert

  17. Hey friends, I’m back in! We had a good vacation snowshoeing and enjoying our condo for two nights. Three great meals out (and one mediocre one, grrr) Snowshoeing is a great workout!

    I bought groceries for the first time today since the end of December. Well, I did purchase my daughter two cans of requested tomatoes earlier this week but she paid me back and I had bought wine and paper products. Is it weird that I felt a little guilty shopping again? I only bought a few things and it was great fun to be back into the store. My big, huge goal is not to over shop for the two of us. We will see how that goes this year.
    Dinner-Our end of pantry challenge meal! Steak, shrimp, roasted potatoes and fresh broccoli (that I bought today) We were going to have this meal before we left on vacation, but didn’t get to it. I really am not totally out of PC, but will continue to use what we have-lots of grains and pasta-and buy what we need.

    • Heather M says:

      Yummy dinner, and welcome back! I think I’m like you– lots to finish off/rotate out but still will need to buy what we need, esp. fresh. And I also need to watch what I buy. Why do I have those bizarre things in the cupboards?

  18. 2/1

    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea
    L – He took pb sandwich, I had chicken pasta soup.
    D – l/o meatloaf, l/o green bean casserole both from freezer, and the last of the egg roll casserole

    I went grocery shopping, mainly dairy and produce. I did restock chunky salsa as the kind I like was finally on sale again.

  19. Well here we are into February!
    Feb 1
    Breakfast was the usual.
    Lunch–He took roasted pork, roasted sweet potatoes and broccoli and cauliflower from the freezer. I had a hard boiled egg.
    Dinner was taco salad with taco meat and black beans from the freezer and shredded carrots, chopped celery. cheese, and salsa from the fridge. We canned the salsa from the garden a year and a half ago and it’s the last jar.
    I need to track our spending to figure out what our grocery budget should be. I am going to separate the needed items from the restock items and see how it goes. I know we are out or almost out of onions, sweet potatoes, oatmeal and broccoli. We also need salad stuff. We will see how it goes!!

  20. Thursday 2/1

    Breakfast – Nutella toast

    Lunch – Ham sandwich for hubby, Salad for me

    Dinner – Spaghetti w/meatballs, garlic bread

  21. Terry calkins says:

    Eggs and hash browns with ham for hubby. I had a chili omelet.
    Fed the rest of the chicken enchilada to the chickens and the dog. Late lunch was the papa Murphy’s pizza 10$ special with free cookie dough. I baked cookies after the pizza.
    No dinner needed

  22. Thurs. 2/1/18

    B: Cereal (the last of the cold cereal), toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: The guys had their usual PBJs, string cheese, apple slices, mandarins, pineapple, dried cranberries, and cookies. (Hubs added yogurt w/ granola and compote.) I had yogurt w/ granola and compote, a blueberry muffin, and some pistachios.

    D: LO pizza, salad, apple and orange slices. (Used up the last of the salad; must go to the store.)

    S/D: I made a chocolate nut pudding (it’s like a hm lava cake, actually). Feb. 1 would have been my mom’s 89th birthday, and she loved chocolate and pecans so I made it as a way to remember her.

    I made a quick trip to Vons to get some staples (salsa, sour cream, whipped cream, and frozen OJ). I spent $15.56. We’re heading to Sam’s today for some more essentials (i.e., cereal, cheese, coffee, etc.), and I’ll probably go to Sprouts as well for produce. I’ve gone online/looked at the grocery flyers to compare prices, and I’ve made my lists. Now we’ll see how I do. 🙂

    Have a great weekend, all!

  23. Thurs. 2/1/18
    B-Granola parfaits with blueberries or meat grits with hash browns
    L-Spinach salad for me with a tiny bit of chicken salad that was left with crackers, hubs had a ham sandwich and some fruit
    D-Made sausage corn chowder full of veggies and cleaned out a lot of bits in the frig and freezer, homemade bread
    I baked bread today and made cottage cheese bread for the first time. In laws gifted us with their perishable groceries before heading to Florida for the winter a few weeks back. No one is a fan of cottage cheese here, so had to find a use for it or it would have gotten pitched. Bread wasn’t bad, it didn’t rise the way I would have liked, but it tasted good. Hubs still not feeling good from the influenza, so soup and bread were my easy go to and a good use of using things up! Went to grocery today to pick up fresh produce and dairy. They are calling for bad weather here starting Sunday and I didn’t want to get caught with kids home and not enough food. Just went to the local grocery so prices were higher than I liked on things, but was able to snag a few deals due to Superbowl. It wasn’t worth the longer drive to Aldi or Kroger for the things we needed. Spent $68 already for the month! Not a good start since it didn’t seem like much coming home with me:(

    • Heather M says:

      But sometimes it’s necessary. You’ll be grateful to have the fresh items. And maybe you’ll make up for it later in the month? Hope the weather isn’t too bad for you guys.

  24. Terry calkins says:

    Another great use up day. Breakfast for hubby was french toast and an egg. I had ham fried rice
    Lunch was BBQ beef sandwiches using leftover roast beef and freezer buns. Hubby also had leftover bean soup

    Dinner was leftover pizza and leftover cookies.
    My brother called today to offer me a rosemary plant. I’ll go over tomorrow and dig it up. Plan to make rosemary and olive oil fococcia soon

  25. Stephanie M. says:


    B – Paul had a breakfast casserole that I made late yesterday afternoon; I had one slice of whole wheat raisin toast, strawberries, and yogurt

    L – Paul worked at home today and I had some apple sauce in the freezer so I made him crepes. (Never knew I could freeze apple sauce until Mona told me last year – thanks Mona!!! I had a roast beef sandwich on whole grain rye and an apple; all roast beef gone now

    D – The last of the pasta primavera

    A note about the breakfast casserole: I had two 8 oz. vacuumed packed packages of cubed ham sitting in my fridge since Christmas that I bought too much of for an appetizer so I decided it was time to do something with it. I found a delicious breakfast casserole and all I had to buy was frozen shredded hash browns. This is not something I would normally eat due to my way of eating now but I did have to try a very small corner piece just to see what it tasted like and it was “the bomb”!!! Paul loved is so much. I thought I would share this recipe:

    Ham and Cheddar Breakfast Casserole

    12 oz. shredded hash browns, thawed
    1/2 cup melted butter
    6 eggs
    1/2 cup milk
    1 lb. chopped cubed ham
    1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar

    Thaw potatoes and squeeze out excess moisture, if any (I didn’t need to do this)
    Mix potatoes with melted butter; press into a 13×9 inch baking dish coated with baking spray. Bake at 425 for 25 minutes. Remove from oven.

    Sprinkle ham over potatoes and cheese over ham.

    Whisk together eggs and milk. Pour egg mixture over meat and cheese.

    Bake an additional 30 minutes or until set

    Serves 6

    Can be cut and frozen into pieces

    • Your welcome Stephanie!! Will have to try the Breakfast casserole.

    • Laurie in CA says:

      Yum, that recipe sounds good! I’ll sub out sausage for the ham as that’s what is in the freezer.

    • Mmmm. That sounds really tasty. I think it would be a big hit around here.

    • I will try this! It sounds delicious!

    • I am definitely going to try this recipe and like Laurie, mine will be with sausage; in our case turkey sausage.

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Sounds good. If I had dug through my freezer just a little, I would have found a package of sausage which I could have used. But I had the ham where I could see it and now it’s gone. It worked out better though because I already make a different breakfast casserole that uses sausage (probably why I had it) so it was nice to use ham in a completely different casserole. If you would also like the breakfast casserole that I use sausage for, I will send it to you. But it will work just as well here. Enjoy!!

        • I’m always looking for new recipes Stephanie! Please share if you have a minute! Thank you

          • Stephanie M. says:

            Hi Cindy:

            Here is a recipe for another breakfast casserole that I sometimes make; different from the one I posted the other day but good also.

            1 lb. breakfast sausage links
            7 or 8 eggs
            3 TBS. water
            1 lb. grated cheddar cheese
            2 – 3 slices bread – You can use potato bread or whole wheat – whatever you prefer

            Brown sausage in a pan in a little oil. Remove and place on paper towels to drain grease. When cool, slices sausage links into small rounds. Beat eggs with water. Spray a 1 qt. casserole dish with baking spray. Place bread slices at the bottom of the casserole dish in one layer covering the whole thing. Add sausage, then egg mixture, then grated cheddar. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Next morning, bake at 350 for 30 to 40 minutes. Done.

            It is nice to be able to do the prep work the night before. However, I have more often than not made this in the morning and then just stuck it in the oven and I don’t see a difference either way. This also can be cut into squares and frozen. Enjoy! 🙂

        • Thank you!

  26. B – He had oats, eggs and hot tea, I had malt-o-meal and hot tea
    L – He took the usual pb sandwich, I had ravioli
    D – Last of the l/o meatloaf and green bean casserole with baked potatoes.

    Not sure what the weekend holds, but probably soup and using up some more of what’s on hand.

  27. Friday 2/2

    Breakfast – Grabbed a banana on my way to daughters to get Granddaughter #5 ready for her 100th day of school. She made a beautiful old lady! The little guy will have his on Monday since Kindergarten had some thing else going on today and with it being Martin Luther King Day and Ground hog day they didn’t have enough time to do it all.

    Lunch – Taco wraps

    Dinner – I made Felicia’s Crockpot honey bourbon chicken (without the bourbon) with ranch potatoes and peas. I highly recommend the chicken it was so easy with only a few ingredients and delicious!

    • Is it the 100th day of school already? This is my first year being a retired teacher (after 38 years in the classroom) and I have tons of great memories about celebrating the 100th day.

      • It was Karen! I know we say that every year they are involved and the littles love it! We always have fun seeing how to dress. Of course Grandma gets to do lots of work with the make up and hair making them look old since she knows what “old” people look like. lol Only have our little guy left now so won’t be the same or as much fun as the girls!

        • Being a grandma is the best! I have four-looks like you have several more!

          • I totally agree Karen J. We have 6 babes, 5 girls and 1 boy. The little guy was a surprise as he wasn’t a planned one. He is my first boy, since I had 3 sisters, 2 daughters and 5 granddaughters. Wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do with him but he is the sweetest little guy. He started out being Pap’s boy but for the last 3 years its all about him and Grandma. They are all such sweet and good littles, our oldest is 17 but I keep reminding her she is still my baby! I was a young Grandma….lol

    • Glad you liked it, Mona! I’ve been away from the site for a couple of days, but I’m back. Well, as much as I can be.
      Been a busy for days!

      • It was very good Felicia so want to thank you for a quick delicious meal. I did see you were called for Jury Duty. Lucky you…. That is always fun! lol Hopefully, things will slow down for you now.

  28. I shopped for a few things at two stores and spent around twenty-five dollars-hamburger for $1.99 lb, fresh produce, but also two bags of double chocolate Milano cookies for $1.49 each-which is a good buy and we needed them SO much. (Ha!)

    Breakfast-out with granddaughter
    Lunch-chef salad
    Dinner-jambalaya with sausage and a few shrimp

  29. Joa in IA says:


    B- Protein shakes for the myself and the boys
    Hubby still gone for work.

    L- I had sub bun with cheddar and salami. Son1 had sub bun with cheddar and deli roast beef. Son2 school lunch. Hubby??

    Snack- Salsa and chips for 2 of us.

    Supper- Used the George Foreman grill to cook up 1 hamburger, 3 brat patties and 3 pork patties. These were all leftover from different camping trips over the summer that got put into Ziplocs. It was time to use up those odds and ends. Made French fries also. There were some patties leftover that will work for lunch this weekend. Hubby still wasn’t home from his work trip.

    That took care of 3 small packages out of the big deep freeze. I’m calling this progress, even if they were small.

    • Heather M says:

      Those small things are the hardest to get rid of and pile up so easily, too, so great job for dinner! I think I’ll be using 2 small bags left in the freezer for Sunday. I have a small freezer, just the one at the bottom of my fridge, and nowhere I can put a larger one, sadly, so space is always at a premium.

      • Joa in IA says:

        You probably have a better idea what is in there and keep it organized since it’s your only one. I too have a bottom freezer in my upstairs fridge (downstairs 2 deep freezes and a smaller fridge/freezer way too storage I think). Mine is definitely not organized. You motivated me to go look through it and see for sure what was in there. Most of it I remembered but I forgot about the 2 butter braid pastries in there. So I’ll take them out tonight and let them defrost and raise. I’ll bake them for breakfast tomorrow morning. Butter braids are made in a small town (West Bend )here in Iowa where my parents are from. A lady started it out if her house and it’s grown into a pretty big business. If you google butter braid pastry you can see what they look like. They have a sweet flaky outside and are filled with a lot of different filling choices. I have cinnamon and raspberry. Slowly, but surely making progress.

        • I love Butter Braids! I’ve gotten them thru fundraiers .

        • We had a raspberry butter braid for breakfast this morning! We too purchase our’s thru our granddaughter’s fundraiser, they are probably from your local bakery since we’re in southern Minnesota

          • Joa in IA says:

            If you ever make it down to the West Bend area they sell them for half price at the local grocery store and meat locker. They are irregular and have a sticker on them that say it but I can’t tell.

            My dad likes it when they are looking for that taste testers. He has done that a few times over the years.

        • Heather M says:

          I went and looked! YUM!! Where is West Bend in Iowa? We drove through Iowa in August, on our way from DC to Utah. I was pleasantly surprised at how beautiful the countryside is there. All rolling hills amid the farms. We definitely took our time in Iowa, stopping at random little places to see. So much so that we drove through Nebraska completely in the evening!

          • Joa in IA says:

            If you know where Des Moines is? Its about 2 1/2 hours north and a bit west from there. They are closer to MN than Des Moines.

            It’s a small farming community and not really very close to a good sized town. There are a lot of flat areas but lots of rolling hills like you said through out Iowa. I live about 40 minutes north of Iowa City. So it’s close to 3 1/2 hours for me to get to West Bend.

            My sister and her husband live there also. They have 8 kids and 2 grandsons. They farm over 5,000 acers in crops some organic and some are not. They have organic hogs and raise broilers (fast growing chickens- done at 6 weeks of age). They use to have half a million laying hens but switched to broilers last summer. I have no idea how many broilers they can raise at a time. This is probably more than you wanted to know…

  30. Friday February 2nd

    B – fruit and yogurt for hubby with an English muffin. I had rhubarb, raspberries and yogurt with a toasted crumpet

    L – l/o soup from the fridge and a banana

    S – sole/haddock and baked beans

  31. I went shopping at Sam’s today while I was having a tire replaced. I had 2 pieces of metal in the sidewall. The other 3 tires were fine. I spent $36.45 on 10lbs of oatmeal, 4lbs of frozen broccoli, 5lbs of cheddar cheese and 2lbs of shredded lettuce. I figured I should get the stuff we needed since I was there anyway. Everything but the lettuce will last thru February or longer. I will hit Aldi’s for the rest on Monday.
    Feb 2
    Breakfast was the usual for my husband. My youngest daughter works 12 hour overnight shifts as a nurse and needed to be by my house at 9am so we went to breakfast.
    Lunch–My husband took the last prepared lunch from the freezer. I skipped.
    Dinner–My DIL is also a nurse and works 12 overnight shifts and my son bowls on Fridays so Grandpa and I spent the evening with the grandkids (ages 6,2 & 3months) and I made supper. We had meatloaf, cheesy potatoes and corn. I also made pumpkin chocolate chip muffins.Everything came out of the pantry, fridge and freezer.

  32. Kathy in ohio says:

    This will be my first pantry-challenge, have been reading everyone’s comments in January while I was laid up with foot surgery!! It is just me and my husband and I have way too much in the pantry and 3 refigerator freezers! Have yet to be able to see exactally what I have but will work on that. Also have no idea what I spend so I can set a budget(have to figure that out too.) Looking forward to hearing from everyone.

    • Glad you’re joining us!

    • Joa in IA says:

      More the merrier! I’ve been reading comments with the Pantry Challenge since 2015. Finally decided to join in this year. Sure helped keep my grocery bill lower for January by joining.

    • Welcome to the challenge. The important thing, I think is to start and you are doing that.

      I found the easiest/best way to track my grocery spending was with a spreadsheet and entering all my purchases for the month in a column. After several months patterns emerge and you get a feel for what you are spending.

      As you dig around in pantry or freezer you can start to get it organized and have a better idea of what you have. You don’t have to do it all at once, just keep taking steps that get you closer to where you want to be.

    • Welcome Kathy in Ohio!! I think once you get things going the way it works best for you, you will see how easy it is to not waste and save money. And there are a lot of great ladies on here that help with any questions or problems, no matter what they are and they aren’t always food related. Glad you have joined us!

    • Once you get one of your refrigerator/freezers cleaned out, maybe you could turn it off, or even sell it, to save money. Do you really need all that cold storage?

      • Kathy in Ohio says:

        No we really don’t need three refigerators with just the 2 of us. My goal is to empty the one in the basement, it is old and and not energy efficient.

    • Welcome Kathy in Ohio! I’m from Ohio too! Hope you enjoy the challenge.

  33. Terry calkins says:

    Stopped at cash and carry on my way home after checking on my mom. Snagged a honeydew melon for 1.00 and a bag of lemons normally over 7.00 for 2.00
    Plan to have some honeydew for breakfast and then bake maybe lemon bread. Might get it done in time to take some to my brother in thanks for the rosemary plant. Better get busy

  34. Laurie in CA says:

    B – hubs had cereal, I had a piece of peanut butter toast, half banana, glass of milk
    L – I had the last piece of l/o pizza and raw cauliflower, hubs had l/o Senate Bean Soup
    D – hubs picked up Mediterranean food on his way home from dropping off our grandson.

    My little germ factories (3 yo grandchildren) have passed on their cooties to me. I went to the grocery store to pick up some some loss leaders and goodies for Super Bowl before I get too sick to do much. I’ll have to figure out how much $$ went to actual food.

    • Heather M says:

      Let’s hope it isn’t too bad for you- my son was sick last week, but it was only a garden variety cold luckily and not the dreaded flu. Hoping the same for you, if you have to be sick.

      • Laurie, like Heather I hope you don’t get the nasty and only have a mild case. I am still praying every day not to get it. Rest up and enjoy the game.

  35. Hi All! Definitely sticking around this month, to keep me honest and keep me on track to clearing out the random things that have been lurking in the cupboards(we don’t have a pantry-all the food is in our tall upper kitchen cupboards), as well as actually using up ALL the last bits of proteins in the freezer so that we can replenish with new and nothing gets too old or freezer burned. I’m trying hard not to buy anything for the freezer until that’s accomplished, but I’ll probably buy a few things we’re out of when I go to Costco later in the week. Just not all the things I want to buy. I stopped by Trader Joe’s 2/2. I had a terrible headache all day, but dragged myself there because we needed milk and it’s the best price by far, aside from Costco. $2.59/gallon, or $1.39/half. Also wanted a few different fruits since variety is slim at this point. And dinner-decided we needed a change of pace from what we’ve been eating so grabbed spicy chicken sausages(2 packs-they come in packs of 4- since both guys would eat at least 2 each), buns, then stuff for a spinach salad, and grabbed boxes of the 100cal choc bars my hubs loves for a sweets fix. Spent $36.19 and only bought what was on my list, a huge win for me. Plus I had easy dinner prep, which was necessary.

    B: son had cereal, bacon, OJ; hubs skipped; I had a piece of naan and some bacon
    L: son took turkey/cheddar on ww, clementines, pistachios/almonds, clif bar; hubs and I were at a special event at the Pentagon (folks, I FINALLY got in the place my hubs spends all his time, and got to see his office in person- given the tours after the event, etc, I decided to stay until he was finished working since it was already 5. Of course things happened and we didn’t leave until after 7:30, but I had time to play online, meet various work people, and observe my husband in action. Really awesome day!), and had a piece of cake each. That’s it.
    D: it was so late by the time we got to the car(lots of walking to work in that place, let me tell you), and almost 8pm, so we decided to pick up takeout on our way home. Good choice, since we were starving and it was late. Guys had dark meat rotisserie chicken and sides from our favorite peruvian chicken place. they were cleaned out of white meat, and I wasn’t really in the mood for what was left, so I grabbed a Subway sandwich.

    B: son had cereal, turkey sausage, OJ; hubs had cornbread; I had a cheese stick
    L: son had turkey/cheddar on ww, clementines, pistachios/almonds, clif bar; hubs skipped-crazy crazy day at work; I had a frozen single serve pizza (headache limited my mood/want-to-make anything)
    D: spicy italian chicken sausages on ww buns w/sauteed red bell pepper/onions, spinach salad, pineapple

    • How neat that you were able to visit your hubby’s work. I’m sure the security must be uber tight. We’ve driven past when we’ve taken kids on school tours to DC, but of course never got to visit. We did go to the Naval Academy one year though. That was pretty cool.

    • The work visit sounds like fun!

  36. Fri. 2/2/18

    B: Scrambled eggs w/ the Canadian bacon that was left over from the pizza, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: Son had his usual packed lunch. Hubs and I were running errands and stopped at In N Out. sigh

    D: Fall veg. quinoa soup (from the freezer), hm drop biscuits, orange and apple slices.

    S/D: Son had cookies and a muffin after school. We all had more of the chocolate nut pudding for dessert.

    We went to Sam’s as well. Purchased two gallons of milk, 2.5 lb. whole bean coffee, bananas, 2.5 lbs. Tillamook med. cheddar, 3 lbs. string cheese, 76.5 oz Kellogg’s Raisin Bran, 48 oz. Post Honey Bunches of Oats w/ Almonds, and 10 lbs. sugar. Spent $53.93. All but the milk and bananas should last the month, and at least the sugar will last beyond that.

  37. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast for hubby was hash browns, eggs and honeydew. I had ham fried rice
    Hubby had leftover pizza while I hosed off the patio then we went to pick up the rosemary plant from my brother. Hubby decided he would BBQ today so I’ll do some baked potatoes and heat some fresh bread with garlic and rosemary. We have glazed lemon bread for dessert. Easy cooking day today

  38. Joa in IA says:


    B- Strawberry protein shake and tea for me. Hubby got in very late from traveling for work. Stayed home Friday. Not sure if he even had breakfast. Boys had protein shakes too.

    L-. Work buys lunch on Fridays. I had a chicken tender basket. Our work dog, Buddy ate half of mine not real hungry. Hubby?? Son1?? Son2 school lunch.

    Supper- I worked late so Hubby went grocery shopping for supper.. I didn’t know it till I got home. He made pork cutlets and fried potatoes in his cast iron pans. All very good and was happy supper was ready when I got home.

    I haven’t looked over his receipts yet but I’m guessing he spent close to $100.00. I had a shopping list he saw and wanted to help out. Very sweet of him to do so. Nothing we had for supper I had in the house.

  39. Stephanie M. says:

    Saturday, February 3

    B – Paul had more of the breakfast casserole that I made yesterday, a piece of buttered toast, and a banana; I had an omelet with turkey crumbles, chopped red bell pepper, and chopped scallions, a whole wheat bagel thin, 1/2 a banana, and V8

    L – Paul had the rest of the crepes that I also made yesterday and the last of the apple sauce; I had an egg salad sandwich on whole wheat toast

    D – Meat loaf, mashed potatoes, broccoli, and stuffed clams

    Today while the meat loaf was in the oven, and the potatoes were cooking, I also made Jessica’s whole wheat pancakes which we will have some tomorrow morning. It’s a huge amount of batter making 20 pancakes and I took the last two out of the freezer for tomorrow for me and added 3 for Paul; the rest went in the freezer.

    • I had a very productive day today! I made a list of the items in the chest freezer! I found a bag of ww flour in there so we tried a recipe for the bread machine with it and the crust is very hard. It only had a cup of water and some honey in it with wheat and white flour and oatmeal , The inside tastes good so I’ll try it again but add more moisture. I thought some applesauce maybe? I soup today in the crockpot with a small chunk of roast and veggies from the freezer. I’m out of barley so I added orzo that has been in the pantry a long time.
      Feb 3
      Breakfast–My husband has his usual breakfast. I had a couple of muffins I made yesterday.
      Lunch–My husband had the last piece of eggbake from this week and a cutie and toast. I skipped.
      Dinner–We had the vegetable soup, salad and l/o breadsticks.

  40. Saturday February 3rd

    We had a cup of coffee at home this morning about 6 am and then it was time to head our for a day of curling. Our $45 per person entry fee included 3 games, breakfast, lunch and a roast beef dinner w/homemade pies for dessert ? AND prizes for all. Not a bad way to spend a lightly snowy Saturday. So absolutely nothing came out of the fridge, freezers or pantry today.

  41. 2/3
    B – Sausage potato hash, hot tea
    L – made vegetable beef soup using up a batch of canned vegetables.
    S – Turkey sandwich with Swiss cheese, cake in a cup for him

  42. Laurie in CA says:

    B – hubs bought some pastries cause I didn’t feel like making breakfast
    L- we ate lunch late. I had l/o Mediterranean food and hubs had l/o steak
    D – hummus and pita chips for me and nachos for hubs
    S – ice cream

    It appears I have a garden variety cold. I’ve had the diffuser going with immune therapy oil and I’m drinking lots of fluids. Maybe tomorrow I’ll have the energy to make chicken noodle soup.

  43. Hope you feel better soon Laurie. Hubby and I both seem to have the sniffles but nothing more than that – keeping my fingers crossed that I’m not jinxing us!

  44. Terry calkins says:

    Good morning ladies
    Yesterday’s BBQ didn’t turn out well. The steaks were almost inedibly tough. Not sure if it was the grass fed beef, too long in my sister’s freezer, the cooking or the combination. Neither of us are our steaks so I will chop them up and pressure cooker them for stroganoff. Before I add any more ingredients I will taste and then either continue on with said stroganoff or feed them to a very happy dog.
    Lemon bread as happily accepted by my brother. We plan to go see hubby’s mother this am, so will take her a loaf as well.
    Down to the last 3 potatoes and out of a few other things so a trip to the store will be necessary when I go to see our tax lady tomorrow. Always happy to have that project behind us
    Have a good Sunday everyone

    • Laurie in CA says:

      It is very easy to over cook grass fed beef steaks on the grill. I make sure hubs takes ours off the grill a few minutes sooner than a store bought steak. I’ve found I have better luck pan cooking them in my cast iron skillet.

  45. Saturday 2/3

    Breakfast – Oatmeal

    Lunch- Spinach & orzo soup w/veggies

    Dinner – Steak, mushrooms, loaded potato casserole and green beans

  46. Joa in IA says:


    B- The usual protein shake for me, I didn’t see anyone else eat anything. Saturdays boys always sleep late.

    L- The pork butts hubby smoked were done around 11:00 am. So I ended up having pulled pork nachos. Hubby and the boys had pulled pork sandwiches.

    Snack- Homemade tapioca pudding. I found a box I forgot about from last Pantry Challenge. I have no idea how old it is, but tasted normal.

    Supper-Pulled pork sandwiches with chips and dip. (Hubby smoked 2 of the butts so lots of leftovers.)

    I added up the grocery receipts from the month so far..$104.94 already. Since a Menard’s In Store Rebate/ credit paid for the 10 Jacks pizzas I’m not counting that. No money spent out of pocket for the 10 pizzas. Son1 was actually suppose to get them and I told him 5 was enough. Hubby thought 10 was better.

    I was making some progress but with all the pizzas and now the plastic tote of deer meat Son2 brought home from a friend. It’s filling back up. I’m guessing there is 10-15 lbs of deer meat in this tote froze solid. Why someone would put a big chunk of meat in a tote and freeze it is beyond me. I’m also not a huge fan of deer meat. The other 3 here like it. At least there was room to handle all of this in the smaller chest freezer. A month ago it would of been a different story.

  47. Hi ladies,
    Catch up time again.
    Fri. 2/2/18
    B-Meat grits, eggs or yogurt with blueberries
    L-Leftover enchiladas and spinach salad
    D-Chicken dinners our school sold for a fundraiser
    S-Cupcakes-My oldest sister dropped off German chocolate cupcakes with coconut pecan frosting. We couldn’t attend my Dad’s birthday party because Hubs has Influenza and is quarantined. She knows I love them and dropped them off. I was quite happy to see them when I came in from farm work!!
    Sat. 2/3/18
    B-Grapefruit for me, eggs different ways for everyone else. Everyone made their own.
    L-Burrito bowls and fresh donuts. I decided to make homemade donuts filled with Bavarian cream I have had in the pantry awhile. I also made some cinnamon twists. They were good, but wow what a mess in the kitchen while making them!! Think I’ll leave donut making to the bakeries!
    D-Kids had leftovers. Hubs and I had date night at home. He’s feeling a little better, but isn’t supposed to go anywhere, so we just had a frozen pizza and watched a movie. Nothing fancy, but no mess to clean up late and it was nice to spend some time together.

  48. Terry calkins says:

    Ran out to do some shopping. 5# butter ,2 1/2 gal of milk, 1 1/2# of parmesan cheese , power aid, epic chicken bar, 50# of potatoes and some sugar free syrup. After coupons 27.70 putting me at 43.10 for the month

  49. Stephanie M. says:

    Sunday, February 4

    B – Jessica’s whole wheat pancakes and turkey sausage

    L – Paul had buffalo chicken wings from the freezer – that bag gone now – more white space appearing; I had a meat loaf sandwich from last night’s dinner and 1/2 a banana

    D – Grilled lamb chops, leftover mashed potatoes, green beans, and stuffed clams – even more white space appearing with the removal of the lamb chops

    Paul will be leaving early tomorrow morning for a week long business meeting in Arizona so I don’t anticipate a whole lot going out of the freezer this week as I will be eating some leftovers and at my mom’s house but we are not far off from finishing up all the meat/fish/chicken from the freezer. Just today I went back through my pantry challenge notes and took a look at everything that has been removed from the freezer and it’s a lot. I didn’t think I had as much as I did but I did and now most of it is gone.

    • Congrats Stephanie! I might by next year at this time be able to say I have “some” space.

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Well Mona, the good thing is that with all the nice things in your freezer, you can continue saving lots of money!!! 🙂

    • Heather M says:

      Great work!! White space is the best! I, too, think we aren’t far off from finishing off the proteins from the freezer. We’ll see, since I’ll start replacing later this week, one way or another. Enjoy not cooking for the week!

  50. Sunday 2/4

    Breakfast – Oatmeal for me and hubby, cereal for grandson…He needed a sleepover with Grandma and Pap

    Lunch -Ham and cheese sandwiches for us and PB&J for the little guy and pretzels

    Dinner – Filet mignon, mushrooms and onion, Leftover potato casserole and carrots

  51. Sunday February 4th

    B – fruit and yogurt for hubby with a toasted bun, I had yogurt, a toasted bun and a piece of cheese

    L – pea soup from the freezer. Hubby had a banana and I had a piece of date nut loaf (freezer)

    S – l/ pot roast with Yorkshire pudding and Brussels sprouts. Ice cream for dessert – one down, just a little left in the other.

  52. We had 2 of the grandkids for the weekend, so much fun and so tired but we just love have our little people here!

    Breakfast: raspberry braid, bacon, mandarins for all
    Lunch: we skipped after returning the kids to mom and dad
    Dinner: Super Bowl snacking: shrimp cocktail, mozzarella sticks and chicken/vegetable egg rolls – all NYE leftovers + veges and dip or hummus – he had beer, I had a glass of wine

    Grabbed a couple boxes of cereal, 1 brick of cream cheese and a bottle of ketchup (the one condiment we cannot live w/o according to hubby and the grandkids) = total spent $7.46.

  53. Feb 4
    Breakfast–Husband had an omelet with onions, mushrooms,garlic and broccoli. I ate some of the bread I baked. I cut off the crust and it wasn’t bad.
    Lunch–He had leftover soup and a cutie. I skipped
    Dinner–We had l/o roasted pork smothered in the onions, mushrooms and garlic and gravy, roasted sweet potatoes and asparagus.

    • Kathy in Denmark says:

      I’m sorry your bread didn’t turn out quite like you wanted.
      Some types of bread have a very hard crust, but I think a lot of the taste is in the crust, so I like it 🙂

      If you bake this bread again, you could put it in a plastic/ziplock bag while it is still hot. The steam from the bread will soften the crust.

      • Kathy–The bread was already hard when I took it out of the bread machine to bake. that’s what makes me think there isn’t enough liquid. The inside was good. I tried putting it in a bag and the crust did not soften at all, so I trimmed it and put the crust part in the bag for bread crumbs!

        • Kathy in Denmark says:

          If your bread is hard before baking, then I am sure you are right about it needing more liquid.
          Nice save on using the crust for breadcrumbs!

  54. Kathy in Denmark says:

    I am also in for February and maybe longer 😉

    I don’t have as much time to post and read comments right now, so I am thinking I will write down what we eat and post a few times a week.

    I didn’t post for the first few days of the month, so I am starting with the 4th of February.
    DD2 turned 3, so we celebrated her, but we will have family over to celebrate her next weekend.

    Brunch: Toast, softboiled eggs, juice, coffee.
    Afternoon: HM apple cake and HM hot cocoa with whipped cream
    D: HM pizza (one of her favourites)

  55. Kathy in Ohio says:

    Made a bunch of meatballs from ground beef that was thawed and needed to be used, half to go with pasta and half to go for subs. Froze the half for subs.

    B egg and cheese muffins, coffee both hubby OJ

    L. Mexican out

    D. Corned beef. Sandwiches, chips both

    S chocolate chip cookies

    B pancakes l/o potatoes l/o smoked sausage,coffee both, hubs OJ me milk

    L none ate late breakfast

    S apple and almonds me, Hugs almonds & raisins

    D. Hubs had schredded chicken sandwich and noodles, I had steamed cabbage and broccoli(last of broccoli) and chicken salad.

  56. 2/4
    Brunch – Oats with link sausage, hot tea
    Supper – Ground Pork and macaroni in a marinara sauce and green beans
    Snack – chips and spinach dip

  57. 2/4/18
    B-leftover homemade donuts and bananas
    L-Leftover sausage corn chowder (I purposely made enough on Thursday so I could have a quick hot lunch after church.
    D-Super bowl snacks during the game. I used up a lot of things that have been lingering since Christmas. I made Spinach artichoke dip, Pizza dip, stuffed banana peppers and I cut up summer sausage and cheese. Also had some chocolate peanuts and malted milk balls that I wanted gone. Spinach, peppers and summer sausage all were from the freezer. The artichokes definitely needed to go and 2 cream cheeses gone. Not sure how I had so many of those. Also finished 2 1/2 boxes of assorted crackers. Yay for getting rid of things and eating some yummy food!!

  58. Terry calkins says:

    Pat you might consider using your bread machine just to process the dough through the first rise. Then shape your bread dough into loaf or rolls and bake in the oven. I realize it’s an extra step but it gives you more control over it, and you don’t have that irritating hole in the bottom.
    Today is my yearly appointment with the tax lady. I go to the same gal for the last 18 years. She is wonderful and we enjoy a cup of coffee together. Still, I’m always happy to have the project done.
    Superbowl yesterday so meals were odd. I ran some errands in the morning and stopped for a visit with my mother in law. When I got home I made myself fries out of baked potatoes on my microwave grill. Brilliant! Hubby wants some for lunch. I’ll never buy fries again. Just bought 50# of beautiful russets for 9.09. we are gonna have a lot of meals with fries!

    • Heather M says:

      50 pounds of potatoes from $9???? How is that possible?? I’m thrilled when a 5lb bag is only $3 around here. Lucky indeed!

    • Terry i do only use the machine to process the dough only. I don’t like the shape of the loaves or the hole in the bottom. When I made the recipe I thought it didn’t have enough liquid for the amount of flour it called for and the oatmeal but being a novice I left it. It was already a brick after the first rise. The inside tasted great tho. It was just getting to the good part that was tough.
      Great buy on the potatoes! What will you do with them all? It’s just the two of us here. I had to move my potatoes to the kitchen cupboard from my pantry closet to stop them from sprouting. Unless the oven is on my kitchen is the coldest room in the house!

  59. Sat. 2/3/18 This was the pretty much all-day STEM day that Hubs helps to organize, working with the science department of the university to host kids from the community. This year they had around 700 1st through 12th graders. Whew!

    B: Cereal, toast, OJ, coffee

    L: We all ate something different at STEM Day.

    D: Everyone was tired, so we went out for Mexican food.

    As I suspected it would be, this was an eat-out day. Not so great for the waistline, pocketbook, or PC, but sometimes ya just gotta roll with it.

    Sun. 2/4/18

    B: Cerea w/ blueberries, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: PBJs (just a slice of PB toast for me), yogurt w/ granola and compote (last of the granola and almost the last of the compote; I’ll need to make more of both Mon. or Tues.), mandarins, and bananas.

    D: Hodgepodge. Son had his LOs from Sat. turned into a burrito and some carrot sticks w/ ranch. Hubs had the last of the soup, all but one of the LO biscuits, crudités w/ ranch, and some fruit I think. I had crudités w/ ranch, the last biscuit, a mandarin, and some pistachios.

    S/D: We all had more of the chocolate nut pudding for dessert. Not sure what was consumed by the guys for snacks.

    I also did some baking and shopping over the weekend. I made a loaf of ww bread for sandwiches during the week and a loaf of “breakfast bread” for our morning toast.

    Shopping comprised going to Smart & Final for avocados, a jar of roasted red peppers (to make hummus), and 25 lbs. of bread flour. I spent $9.98. At Grocery Outlet I picked up 5 lbs. of Fuji apples and 8 lbs. of navel oranges for $7.98. Vons had a 3-day sale on pistachios, so I picked up 2 lbs. for $8.99 (sale and $1-off coupon). I had to pass on the BLSL chicken breasts that they had on sale for 99 cents/lb. because there’s just no room to store them. Finally at Sprouts I picked up fresh produce, butter, dried cranberries, dried split peas, almonds, cashews, and uncured bacon and spent $38.97.

    My total for the month so far is $135.41, which is more than I spent for all of January, but I think I’m still in pretty good shape for my February goal. Lots of the things I’ve purchased so far will last quite a while. Also, the garden is starting to produce again, so I should be able to start supplementing our produce with home-grown goodies. Plus, there are the ever-full freezers. 😉

    • Heather M says:

      I’m blown away by these prices! Just gobsmacked. We have none of these places near us. The best prices either come from sales at our normal grocery stores or Costco or Trader Joe’s. Even Aldi is a drive and I’ve learned that our Aldi prices are higher than others- milk is over $3 a gallon, meanwhile at Trader Joe’s it’s $2.59 and Costco even less. And grocery stores are $4+. Pistachios never have a sale price like that. Amazing. and 13 lbs of fruit for $8? Just, wow. Sometimes I hate living in an urban area. But mostly I don’t. Just the cost of living part.

      • Yes, the DC area is costly. We’re in one of the many suburbs of Los Angles, so our housing costs are awful, but food can be reasonable if one is careful. Just two years ago I was easily spending $400 per month on groceries. Then I did my first PC and realized how much I was overspending/overbuying. (I think I’m still overbuying, but I’m getting better.)

        Hubs is about 15 years shy of retirement, and we’re considering relocating out of state due to the cost of housing. However, I’m not sure that other locations would actually be appreciably better once the costs of food, utilities, etc., are factored in. Where we are now we rarely need to use AC or heating, we can garden nearly year-round, we can have backyard chickens, and everything else we need is nearby. Plus, we have access to world-class medical facilities (which is critical w/ my health history), and some pretty nice museums as well. (Not like all of the museums on the Mall, but still pretty good. 😉 )

        We’re praying about it and starting to do some research. I’d be interested to know what the average costs are around the country, so if anyone out there would like to share I’m all ears.

        • Joa in IA says:

          Well I googled median house prices in the area I live. One sight said $151,000 and another said $174,000. We need heat and Ac here. Gets pretty humid in the summer.

          I plant my little garden usually end of April and I don’t start getting tomatoes, green peppers till the end of July. We usually get frost beginning of October and that ends the growing season.

          Very safe and good schools also. I don’t feel like there is a ton to do. I also don’t like to go out at night when it’s cold.

          We are seriously looking into being full-time RVers in 3 years after the boys go off to college and get settled in their lives. We actually know quite a few people who have done it. We already spend 50-60 nights in the summer in our 5th wheel camper. I really want to spend my winters in a warmer area. There are so many things we want to see and do. So I understand you and your family trying something new and wondering where to go and will it work.

          • Thanks for the info! 🙂

            My brother and sister-in-law have been full-time RVing for about a year now. They have spent the warmer months up in WA, and the cooler months in AZ. They seem to like it.

            I’m a homebody, though. If we were ever to do something like that, I’d want to go the route our neighbors have taken: keep the house and RV about 6 months of the year. (Now that our neighbors are in their 80s, they are finding that they really can’t be out as long as they could 20 years ago–too many doctors appointments and it’s just a lot of work to get their trailer all ready to go.)

  60. Stephanie M. says:

    Monday, January 5

    B – Paul had cereal; After that, a car came to pick him up to bring him to Newark Airport for his week long meeting in Phoenix, Arizona. He’ll be back Friday afternoon. I had a whole wheat bagel with light cream cheese and peanuts

    L – Meat loaf sandwich on whole grain rye and an apple

    D – Leftover grilled lamb chops from last night; I asked Paul to grill a couple of extras so I wouldn’t have to cook tonight. I also had some butternut squash, a stuffed clam and V8. Not bad for eating all alone. LOL

    I had two bananas in the freezer so I made a banana bread for my mom since I’m going there for dinner tomorrow night. I started out with 4 bananas and made a banana bread for Paul a few weeks ago and sliced it and froze the slices. Now I have three more slices and then that’s gone. And I have no more bananas in the freezer. Little by little, everything is going.

    • Heather M says:

      Sounds like a decandent restaurant meal alone! Lol. I hope it isn’t too quiet for you this week. Too bad I’m not closer- we could have gotten together.

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Thanks Heather. Yes, it would be nice if we could have gotten together. 🙂 Quiet is what I’m enjoying. Even my dishwasher is taking a break. LOL

    • Stephanie, enjoy your quiet time! I think a week of getting to do what I want or nothing and not having the meal schedules sounds like a dream.

      • Stephanie M. says:

        It’s really nice, Mona!! Am I being mean by saying that? LOL Last night I slept all the way through without having to kick the “snorer” next to me. It was heaven. I woke up feeling so rested and full of energy. Tonight I’m going to my mom’s for dinner but tomorrow is going to be a pajama day!!!! My mother is sending me home with leftovers tonight so no cooking tomorrow either. One of my favorite comfort meals is pork chops, sauerkraut and mashed potatoes. My brother and I both love it. So when he goes there sometimes, he’ll ask my mother to cook it. I know how to cook it but Paul would sooner hang himself rather than eat sauerkraut so I don’t cook it anymore. Whenever Paul goes away, which is not often, I ask my mother to cook it and I enjoy it so much. So whatever he’s eating tonight, I wouldn’t appreciate it more than what I’m going to have. LOL Thank God for the little things. 🙂

        • Enjoy your meal and time with your Mom, Stephanie. It is really sad when they go away and we enjoy “our” time. That’s what I miss in the winter months because hubby doesn’t stay overnight at camp then so there is no “me time” which I think we all need occasionally. But really enjoy your jammies day tomorrow. I am so ready for one of those days and was thinking that the end of the week is pretty empty so I may try it, just not going to plan on it because I don’t want to get my hopes up and then wham someone wants or needs something. Enjoy your sauerkraut, pork chops and mashed potatoes!

          • Stephanie M. says:

            Thanks Mona!! I just got home and it was such a pleasant evening. Our youngest daughter joined us. We had a lot of laughs about my dad talking about him. Today was the 10th anniversary of his passing and rather than mope around and feel bad, we enjoyed talking about the wonderful memories. Our oldest daughter who is very spiritual called my mom first thing this morning and told her to look for signs. My mother told her that she has a bird feeder in her yard and every day, so many birds come to eat and today not one came. So our daughter told her that is probably a sign that he is looking down on us. What a wonderful thought. So all in all, it was a really nice evening and I so enjoyed the dinner and came home with the leftovers. LOL I am so happy!!! 🙂

  61. Monday 2/5

    Breakfast – Oatmeal

    Lunch – Spinach & orzo soup

    Dinner – Lemon chicken pasta, garlic toast

  62. 2/5

    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea
    L – pb sandwich for him, leftover hash for me
    D – l/o macaroni and green beans, cake for dessert

  63. Monday February 5th

    B – fruit and yogurt + a toasted bagel for hubby, yogurt and a toasted bun for me

    L – latte and a muffin for hubby before the gym, I had a grilled cheese and hot chocolate

    S – chicken parmesan with salad and a small helping of pasta for me

  64. Joa in IA says:


    B- Biscuits and sausage gravy and Cinnamon Butter Braid(decided to save the raspberry one for next weekend since hubby wanted to cook a big breakfast.)

    L- no one was hungry.

    Snack- Chili cheese dip with tortilla chips.

    Supper-. Snack stuff for Super Bowl. BBQ smokies,, Pulled pork nachos, cookie salad, cheese & crackers.

    Took quite a bit out of the pantry and freezer over the weekend for Sunday and Monday meals. Did some meal prepping for the week to make it easier. My coworker is gone unexpectedly to be with his dad who is dying from lung cancer. He had been doing OK and then Friday all of sudden took a turn for the worse. So I don’t expect him back this week. I’m normally done between 2-3pm everyday now I won’t be home till after 6pm. Meal prepped so the boys can get supper ready pretty easily for all of us.


    B- Protein shake and tea for me, hubby cinnamon oatmeal.

    L- Pulled pork sandwich for me , Hubby protein shake. Son1 left over BBQ smokies and not sure what else. Son2 school lunch.

    Snack- Leftover chili cheese dip with chips for the boys.

    Supper- Chili, cheddar cheese, oyster crackers, fritos and cookie salad.

  65. Monday again, how does that happen so quickly?

    Breakfast: hubby has had the same thing for forever, Basic 4 cereal, oj and coffee – I love variety, this week will be a hard boiled eggs or steele cut oats, fruit (today was mandarin orange) zucchini bread (zucchini from our garden frozen specifically for this purpose, only two more packages but each makes four small loaves)
    Lunch: chicken tortilla soup and yogurt w/raspberries
    Dinner: patty melt – the last of the marble rye bread w/hamburger from the freezer w/sautéed onions and cheese and a romaine salad
    Dessert: hubby had his ice cream

  66. Laurie in CA says:

    B – hubs had cereal and I had almond butter on toast, an orange scone and tea
    Linner – We had chips, dips,raw veggies & bbq tri-tip sandwiches, ice cream for dessert while watching the game

    B – hubs had eggs, sausage and toast, I had a protein shake
    L- tri-tip sandwiches,hubs had chips and dip with his and I had raw veggies
    D- since lunch was late I had a piece of peanut butter toast and tea, hubs had more chips and dip

  67. Heather M says:

    My guess is I’ll be posting every few days, like Kathy. I am taking notes on what we eat and spend too. 🙂

    Saturday 2/3:
    B: son had cereal; hubs had a banana; I had a piece of naan
    L: chocolate chip pancakes(have a few containers lurking in the cupboards since last year, so we need to eat more pancakes!), pork breakfast sausage(leftover from christmas-freezer); I also had chopped kiwi on my pancakes(they were close to dead-luckily I saw them in the produce drawer!)
    D: leftovers clearing out night! Hubs ate the rest of the chili con carne and the cashew chicken over rice; I had the rest of the snow peas, cashews and sauce over rice- there was a lot of that left, not so much the chicken, and I love the veggies/nuts; son had a bean/cheese/chicken/pepperoni quesadilla.

    Sunday 2/4:
    B: nothing as we raced to church
    L: hubs and son at the last spicy italian chicken sausages/ww buns, hubs also had leftover spinach salad; I finished the red lentil mulligatawny soup w/ a piece of garlic toast(made it on ww sandwich bread). It is SO GOOD, this soup!
    D: Pretty pleased with our healthy superbowl spread. No party for us this year, and I’m glad, because it was one REALLY fun football game to watch. Homemade turkey burgers on ww bund (ground turkey in freezer now gone! with all the toppings; chopped greek salad with what was on hand (cucumber, bell pepper, almost dead yellow cherry tomatoes, feta, kalamata olives, quick homemade vinaigrette); homemade guacamole and chips. Luckily had 4 very ripe avocadoes-only 1 left. We were all very pleased with the food and it felt festive yet healthy.

    Monday, 2/5:
    B: son had cereal, bacon, OJ; hubs skipped; I had a granola bar
    L: son took turkey/cheddar on ww, pistachios/almonds, pineapple, clif bar; hubs grabbed a steak & cheese sandwich at work; I finished off the spinach salad, had a small turkey sandwich, and a pear
    D: Plan A I had to bag because Dad called and we talked too long (Ugh. I’m stressed about my mom. Things aren’t great suddenly these past few months, and to top it off she’s in the hospital with the flu, though doing ok w/it. They live in Southern CA and I’m in DC area- when do I get on a plane, etc.). So Plan B kicked in. I had defrosted a bag of rotisserie chicken parts w/ some meat from december. Pulled as much meat off as I could (2 cups maybe), and tossed the bones back in the fridge. Tomorrow I’ll make some stock in my instant pot for the first time. I cooked up some packaged of ramen noodles (no packet), drained them, sauteed some bell pepper slices, made a peanut sauce, then tossed it all together and topped it with green onions. SO GOOD. and fast. Also steamed the last of the broccoli.

    • Sorry to hear your mom isn’t doing well. It’s hard to be away from family. (My parents were in the Phoenix area, and it was still hard to get over there. We were able to bring my mom to stay with us for weeks, sometimes months, at a time. Still, it was especially hard as they neared the end of their lives and I felt torn between needing to be home with my husband and son–who was pretty young at the time(s)–and being with my folks. I’m glad we were less than a mile from my husband’s side of the family and were able to be with them.)

    • Joa in IA says:

      Hope your mom is getting better and can go home soon. The flu isn’t anything to mess with this year.

    • Kathy in Denmark says:

      Sorry that your mum is ill.
      I think time spent talking on the phone with your dad is time well spent! And you still pulled of a great dinner 🙂

  68. I went to Aldi’s this morning right when it opened because the forecast called for snow. I bought 10lbs of russets, 6 lbs of sweet potatoes, 6 pounds of onions, 6 dozen eggs, coffee, bagels, 2 bags of lettuce,2lbs of bananas, 3lbs of cuties,sour cream. half and half, and 2lbs of carrots. Everything but the lettuce and bananas should get us thru February. It started snowing while I was there. We got about 3″. It’s supposed to snow again tomorrow and Friday. My total so far is $82.46.
    The lettuce from Sam’s turned brown within 2 days of opening it so I will say something the next time I’m there.
    I’ve decided to process all the lumpy bags of stuff in my upright freezer to use less space. Last week I did 1 1/2 gallon bags of beef and got 4 32oz jars of broth. The last batch made the vegetable soup. Today I’m making tomato sauce out of 3 gallon bags of tomatoes. Next will be a couple of chicken carcasses. Jars and flat bags will take up less space and will be easier to store.
    Feb 5
    Breakfast–My husband had his regular breakfast. I had a couple of pieces of pumpkin bread and a banana.
    Lunch–My husband took the last of the chicken filling, a yogurt and a couple of cuties. I skipped.
    Dinner–I ate the l/o vegetable soup and toast and a cutie. He skipped.

  69. Terry calkins says:

    Yesterday was tax day. I always dread it, and happy to have it done. This year we ended up a wash. I will just owe for some of the preparers fee. I call that a win!
    No breakfast before I left but I made hubby his hash browns and eggs.
    Lunch was leftover BBQ pork sandwich on buns and home fries.
    Dinner was cashew chicken and rice.
    Hubby has asked for more of Jessica’s banana pancakes for breakfast. He so rarely requests anything, you know it’s a good recipe when he does.
    The potatoes I recently bought were from cash and carry. It’s the same store as smart and final in some areas. It’s a restaurant supply store that anyone can buy from without a membership. I buy 50# sacks of potatoes and onions there. There are only two of us but hubby likes potatoes every morning and frequently will make himself a loaded baked potato for a whole meal. A 50# sack normally last us two months. They keep well in our garage in the winter. In the summer they keep well in our air conditioned utility room.
    One of our favorite budget meals is a baked potato stuffed with chili and cheese. I even take a toaster oven so we can have them when camping.
    Stopped at the store today for mushrooms, hamburger buns, cottage cheese and half a cup of cashews for dinner. I always use the bulk bins for nuts so I can buy just enough for a recipe…otherwise we snack on them. 6.27 for groceries today but I shouldn’t need anything more for quite awhile.

    • We get 50 lb. bags of potatoes too. I have to drive 45 minutes to the place that has them, but we pay between $8-10 depending on the time of year. Too good of a deal to pass up! Our 2 married kids get their potatoes from us and we use them up pretty fast then. I do cut them into hash browns if they start to sprout. I just par boil them a little and then spread out on cookie sheets with parchment paper and freeze, then I bag them up later. I’ve done steak fries this way too, but partially bake the fries first. We used to grow our own potatoes, but potato bugs got so bad and I read if you don’t plant them for a few years, we might be able to get rid of the bugs. I don’t like to use the pesticides much so, until then we will keep buying this way.

  70. Monday 2/5
    B-Egg burritos for most (it was a 2 hour delay so kiddos didn’t have to rush), yogurt parfaits for everyone else
    L-Leftover burger, corn and apple for hubs, spinach salad with leftover chicken for me and some guacamole and chips
    D-Taco pizzas (using leftover enchilada meat) on Naan bread and veggie dippers. Still have extra meat from enchiladas, might have to freeze the rest. The pizzas were yummy though, so good way to use some of it!

  71. Mon. 2/5/18

    B: Cereal, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: The guys had their regular packed lunches. I had salad, some Monterrey Jack cheese, and a mandarin.

    D: Black bean burgers (made w/ some of the beans I cooked up the other day) on hm buns, salad, hm applesauce, and mandarins.

    S/D: Son had a muffin after school. I’m not sure what Hubs may have had. Son also finished up the last of the chocolate nut pudding.

    I, too, emptied out some of the random bags in the freezer to make a big pot of veggie stock. Of course now I have to put the stock back in the freezer, but with my weekly soup making perhaps they won’t stay there long. I was also able to harvest some lettuce, green onions, and radishes for the salad I made, and I snipped some fresh herbs for the stock as well. Yay for the garden!

  72. Tuesday 2/6

    Breakfast – Oatmeal

    Lunch – Last of the spinach orzo soup w/crackers

    Dinner – White chicken chili w/corn muffins

  73. Stephanie M. says:

    Tuesday, January 6

    B – one slice of whole wheat raisin toast, yogurt and strawberries

    L – Meat loaf sandwich on whole grain rye and an apple

    D – Dinner at my mom’s

  74. Joa in IA says:


    B-The usual protein shake and tea for me. Hubby cinnamon oatmeal.

    L- Chili and oyster crackers for me, hubby protein shake. Son1 BBQ pork quesadilla. Son2 school lunch.

    Snack popcorn for me. boys had salsa and chips

    Supper-Tacos with cheddar cheese, black olives, tomatoes, sour cream, salsa tortillas and tortilla chips.

    Son2 went to Aldis today for me. He ate a can of black olives on Monday and I didn’t know it and it was the only can. He bought black olives, cheddar cheese, flaky biscuits and tomatoes. He said he didn’t bring the receipt home but spent $6.96. Total spent so far this month $111.90.

  75. Breakfast: hard boiled egg, mandarin and green tea – hubby the usual
    Lunch: turkey sandwich using the last of the deli turkey and bacon from the weekend + yogurt and raspberries, hubby had a frozen entree from a couple of months ago
    Dinner: the last chicken breast baked, peas and leftover rice from the freezer
    S/D: hubby – ice cream and hot fudge

    The produce drawer is looking pretty sparse, we have 1/2 head of cabbage, about 2 cups of spinach, 1/2 yellow onion, 3 stalks of celery & 2 carrots – the fruits are even more sparse – about 1/4 cup of raspberries, the mandarins are gone as are the apples and navel oranges.

    The freezer does have 2 quarter pieces of banana, some mangos and a 1/4 bag of berry medley for hubby’s smoothies to add to the spinach and carrots w/yogurt but by the weekend we will need to do some serious restocking !

  76. FEB 6 – Tuesday

    Been busy few days, preparing for jury duty on Monday and preparing to visit family.

    Saturday –
    Dinner – Leftover sliced ham, pizza beans and potato/peppers/onion hash

    Sunday –
    Breakfast – English Muffin Egg and Cheese Sandwich
    Lunch – ham and beans
    Dinner – evicted a DiGiorno frozen pizza from the freezer.

    Monday – Jury Duty Day
    Breakfast – orange-cranberry muffin with banana and hot tea
    Lunch – English Muffin Sandwich with egg and cheese.
    Dinner – Spinach Ricotta Lasagna roll ups, pizza beans and side salad

    Breakfast – oatmeal pancakes, strawberry syrup.
    Lunch – English Muffin Sandwich with egg and avocado
    Dinner – beef and vegetable soup from the freezer, garlic bread on hoagie rolls.

  77. Tuesday February 6th

    B – yogurt and a bagel for hubby, yogurt and a toasted bun for me

    L – egg salad sandwiches

    S – h/m baked beans and eggs

  78. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast. Jessica’s banana pancakes and eggs
    Lunch lemon chicken
    Dinner chili cheese fries.
    Hubby is asking for baby back ribs for tomorrow yum. Those baby backs are going fast

  79. 2/6
    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea
    L – He took pb sandwich, I had a fish taco
    D – Leftovers, he had hash and I had macaroni, cooked apples for dessert

  80. Tues. 2/6/18

    B: Oatmeal, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: Hubs had his usual packed lunch and finished up the last of the compote. Son had an “early out” day, so he and I had PB/apple butter sands on ww, bananas, string cheese. It seems like there must have been something else (that really doesn’t look like enough to fill up my son), but I didn’t write things down.

    D: LO black bean burgers (w/ cheese, of course), salad, dill pickles, apple and orange slices.

    S/D: Son had the last blueberry muffin. I had some pistachios. Don’t know what Hubs had (probably PB toast, oh and I did see him munching on carrot sticks w/ ranch).

    The black bean burger recipe I use makes about a dozen patties, sometimes even more. Does anyone know if they freeze/reheat well? We can get through about half of them over the course of two days, but beyond that my family balks. I usually end up eating the rest for lunches, but after a while even I am tired of them. I thought about cutting the recipe in half, but it calls for one egg–not sure how to halve that. 😉

    • Roberta, I would think the black bean burgers would freeze well either cooked or uncooked. I would freeze just like regular burgers.

      • Thanks, Pat. I’ll have to try it (’cause as good as they are, I really don’t want to eat them for an entire week).

        • Kathy in Denmark says:

          I freeze bean burgers all the time, it’s no problem 🙂
          They do tend to break easier when thawed, so I usually heat them in the oven so I don’t have to flip them over.

          • Thanks, Kathy. That’s good to know. (Now I just have to clear out some space in the freezers so that the next time I make them I can just stash half of them in the freezer from the outset.)

  81. I got a 40oz and 18oz jar of tomato sauce. I am now making chicken broth out of a rotisserie chicken. One more bag of raw chicken carcasses to go and I will be done. I have an empty shelf in my upright! The door is stuffed to the gills with all the broth,beans and sauce tho.
    I tried the bread recipe again and this time I sifted all the flour together. It’s much better. I might try one more time and grind up the oatmeal and maybe cut the flour by 1/2 a cup.
    Feb 5
    Breakfast–My husband had his usual. I had 2 pieces of the bread with butter warmed in the microwave and a banana.
    Lunch–My husband had l/o pork, l/o roasted sweet potatoes and cauliflower. I had a hard boiled egg,
    Dinner–We had spaghetti and meatballs, a salad and bread sticks,

  82. Stephanie M. says:

    Wednesday, January 7

    B – One slice of whole wheat raisin toast, Greek vanilla yogurt with strawberries and blueberries

    L – Meat loaf sandwich on whole grain rye – this was the last of the meat loaf

    D – Leftovers from my mom from dinner at her house last night – pork chop, sauerkraut, and mashed potatoes

    Our oldest daughter’s fiancée will be graduating next week from the fire academy and tomorrow he starts his job at the fire house. He wanted to bring a dessert there and since I’m the only one in the family that bakes, I offered. So first thing this morning I made a crumb cake and a raspberry cream cheese coffee cake. It was such a dreary day starting with freezing rain then turning to snow and now rain again so it was a great day to do some baking.

    Paul received two very prestigious awards yesterday at the conference where there are about 100 people in attendance from all over the United States. He was so happy and I’m really happy for him. It’s nice when you get recognized. The first award was the VP award for top talent for all of the operations. He was so excited and then as soon as he sat down, he was called back up for the second award which was the CEO Center of Excellence award for the entire company. He told me he was shaking and teary eyed. What an honor for him.

    • So excited for Paul!!! That is wonderful! Wahoo… go Paul!!
      We have had the same weather here today, Stephanie. School was cancelled this morning and then this afternoon they canceled all activities at every school around us. So glad we didn’t have to go any where. Bet they were all excited to have all your goodies at the fire house today!! You are such a sweet lady!

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Thank you so much Mona!!! 🙂 If I remember right, you were planning a pajama day at the end of the week. With the weather being what it is, I hope you do. Nothing like it. LOL Mine was supposed to be today but I wound up having to run off to the store in this garbage weather; something I don’t usually do but the streets looked ok so I went. However, tomorrow, I’m home all day and have absolutely nothing to do. The house is clean, I don’t have to cook, I don’t have to go anywhere so I just got undressed and I’m in my cozy pajamas and housecoat and this is the way I’m going to stay until Friday morning. And then and only then, will I get myself dressed and ready for when Paul comes home. LOL Have a wonderful night!!!

        • Not sure it will be this week Stephanie. Had a sick little granddaughter here today and thinking she will be back tomorrow. I don’t like when my babies are sick….I like to play with them not just sit and watch them. I am hoping for one day next week….we’ll see.
          I’m sure you are looking forward to seeing your honey tomorrow.

          • Stephanie M. says:

            I’m sorry your granddaughter is under the weather, Mona. It’s been a very tough winter for everyone but when the littles get sick, that’s really awful. You just want them better again right away. I understand. Sending lots of hugs and kisses to her.

            Yes, I’m really glad Paul is coming home tomorrow. I’ve had enough alone time now. Many of the people at this meeting left today but he and several other people stayed the extra night because the flight out of Arizona would have been very late at night and he would have gotten home in the very early morning hours. So tomorrow, he is leaving Arizona their time in the morning. I think he said he has to go to the airport at 4:30. So he will be back in Newark around 2:00 and by the time he gets his bag and gets in the car that will be waiting for him, I would expect him to be home by about 3:30. But he can’t wait to be home and back in his own bed. I made reservations for dinner at one of our favorite restaurants for next Saturday, the 17th. I figured this weekend, he would just want to relax a little. But I want to go out and celebrate his awards so we’ll do that next weekend. Anyway, have a nice evening and I hope your little one feels better very, very soon. 🙂

    • Hurray for Paul!! It is so nice to be recognized for a job well done.
      I made the first breakfast casserole for dinner tonight and it was great. I used bacon because I didn’t want to go downstairs to get the ham. Thanks for posting. It’s a keeper.
      I also have nowhere I have to be till Friday so a pj day is planned for toorrow!

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Thank you Pat!!! He is really very happy and as he put it, “Humbled.”

        I’m so happy you liked the casserole. We thought it was delicious.

        Enjoy your pj day. I know I’m going to. We all need that sometimes. How fun!!!!!

    • Sounds like you have a lot to celebrate in your household. Way to go, guys!

    • Congrats to Paul! Sounds like it was well deserved! Enjoy the rest of your quiet time. I would kill for a pajama day, don’t see one of those for many years for me.

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Thanks so much Sandy!!! I’m really very proud of him and when I talk to him on the phone, I can hear how happy he is and that’s makes all his hard work worth it for sure. I am enjoying my pajama day immensely today. LOL It’s not something I do often, never, ever I the summer, but in the gloomy days of winter, it’s a nice thing to do. Maybe you can find a day over a weekend to enjoy one yourself. 🙂

  83. Congrats to Paul!! I’m sure it’s well deserved.

    • Stephanie M. says:

      Thank you so much Tasty!!! Often times, people have no problem complaining or pointing out negativity but rarely take the time to offer praise or something nice to say. Paul’s job is highly stressful. He is a district manager for several data centers. Although I should just tell people that his job is to go to meetings because that’s all he does. LOL He works only about 30 minutes from home but usually every week he has to go to NYC or to other data centers near NYC and check on things. And when there is an issue, he is always called and many times during the night. There are plenty of times when his phone rings in the middle of the night and sometimes it can happen several times during the night and then he gets up and sits in the den and deals with whatever the problem is. He also gets phone calls many times on the weekend. He also has more people working under him than anyone else and he has to meet deadlines and goals and it all causes stress, especially because he is a perfectionist and wants everything done right. He is a very dedicated man whether it’s with his job or with his family life and he’s a hard worker both at work and at home. At home, especially in the better weather, he can never sit still. He is always cutting the lawn, washing his car, picking weeds, making sure there’s not a single leaf on his lawn, pitching in to help me, trimming bushes and trees, and the list goes on. And he’s the same at work. So it’s easy to see how a man like him could cause himself stress. So it was so nice for him to be so publicly appreciated. It made him feel good and feel like all the work he does, doesn’t go unnoticed. He’s a good guy and very well liked by everyone he knows. Between him and I, he’s the cherub and I’m the “spicy” one. LOL

      • Lynn from NC Outer Banks says:

        Congratulations to Paul! What nice awards and great affirmation for the job he does. Sounds well deserved!

        • Stephanie M. says:

          Thank you so much Lynn!!! These awards come at a time when he was feeling quite a bit of frustration so he’s very happy.

  84. Wednesday 2/7

    Breakfast – Ham & cheese quiche

    Lunch – Last of the leftover chicken chili

    Dinner – Beef, peas, mushrooms and gravy over noodles, applesauce

  85. Wednesday – FEB 7

    Reporting from the road in a hotel room somewhere north of the GA/SC border! LOL!

    Breakfast – able to make scrambled egg/cheese burrito in this kitchen suite, sliced avocado and hot tea.
    Snack – Quaker Chewy granola bar
    Dinner – at the next hotel….hot dog in the microwave on a leftover hoagie bun, avocado.

    Tomorrow – free breakfast! 🙂

  86. Kathy from Ohio says:

    2/7. Wednesday
    B-coffee both toast with pb me hubs none
    L out white castle after Dr. Appt
    D pork chops freezer, L/O noodles and peas hubs, l/O cauliflower casserole me

  87. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast. The rest of Jessica’s banana pancakes batter
    Lunch tuna sandwich
    Dinner. Baby back ribs, rice pilaf, green peas and butternut squash. I fixed a nice dinner plate to take to my mom tomorrow
    Lovely weather. The trees are beginning to bud out spring bulbs are pushing up. Hopefully we can go ahead and have an early spring

  88. Terry, what state are you in that you are looking at trees in bud rather than snow drifts ?

  89. Wednesday, February 7th
    Breakfast : Steele cut oatmeal, oj & green tea – hubby, the usual cereal, oj, coffee and mid-morning yogur/vege/fruit smoothie
    Lunch: bagel/cream cheese (provided @ work) yogurt and the last of the raspberries + V8 juice
    Dinner: spaghetti and meatballs (homemade canned sauce & meatballs – the last meatballs from a batch I made before Christmas) and a romaine lettuce salad
    S/D: hubby had a couple of salted caramels

    We are down to a lot of “last of” items in both the fridge and freezers, which is awesome EXCEPT it makes me really, really nervous ?

    • I can identify with your nervous. I like the pantry challenge, and making sure I’m aware of what we have, but I don’t really ever intend to get pantry or freezer down to nothing. It’s not the way I cook. I buy things on sale, and plan and cook from what’s on hand. Only dairy, eggs and a few veg are really on a do I have any basis.

      You will need to decide what your level of comfort is and this issue, but I like having back stock available. I have learned in the last couple challenges to be more aware of how much back stock we have before buying more and have gotten better about rotating freezer items. But with two freezers, I would never be comfortable with eating them both down really low. I do like to eat them down to where I can put everything in one to defrost the other one, however.

  90. Wednesday February 7th

    B – granola and a bagel for hubby, raspberries, yogurt and granola for me, with a slice of toast and marmalade I made yesterday.

    L – hubby was out with his golfing buddies for lunch, I found some left over bolognese sauce in the freezer and had that with some pasta

    S – neither of us was really hungry so we just had some turkey on h/m buns

  91. The 1st batch of broth is in the fridge cooling. I’ll start the raw chicken bones in the morning. I am going to run out of plastic jars that I use for freezing. May have to use some of my plastic storage containers for the last of the broth.
    I am joining Stephanie in the pj day tomorrow. I don’t have anywhere I have to go!!
    Feb 7
    Breakfast–My husband had his usual. I had more of the wheat bread I made with butter.
    Lunch–He had l/o pork with onions, mushrooms and garlic from Sunday and a banana. I had a cheese stick and a muffin.
    Dinner was that ham egg bake that Stephanie posted only I used bacon and cuties.

  92. Lynn from NC Outer Banks says:

    Hello all. As usual, playing catch up here. My father fell ill (but is doing much better now) so I suddenly left town a week ago, leaving my husband to fend for himself with minimal prepared food and food in general available-thanks to the PC! Bless his heart, he scrounged around with my direction, and ate for a week out of the freezer and pantry (and yes, we’ve He did go buy coffee as we were completely out and bought him some Klondike bars that were on special. He was taken out to lunch once or twice, but ate all dinners at home. This is basically what he ate:

    Breakfast-grits with turkey sausage from the freezer (Stephanie, thank you for mentioning this. I’d never seen it before and began looking for it after you mentioned eating it. As an experiment, I bought the Jimmy Dean’s and he thought it quite tasty. I ate one link and agreed that it was good, so will buy more of this. Is this the brand you eat?) Also eggs and sausage, eggs and toast, just toast, etc.

    Lunch: I’d left some turkey salad and he also had some leftover chili available. When I cooked the turkey, I’d put the breast back in the freezer. He very partially thawed some of it so he could cut some slices from it, then fixed hot turkey sandwiches, turkey melts with cheese from freezer and cold turkey sandwiches.

    Dinner: he had chili over baked potato. Then he found and ate some canned soups from the pantry (Progresso and Yes varieties) coupled with grilled cheese and turkey sandwiches if he hadn’t had it for lunch.

    I had taken some HM ham bone soup with me for my family to eat, which we did. We also ate some soups and salads from the hospital and nearby fast food places.

    We were increasingly out of all fresh produce and canned and frozen vegetables towards the end of the PC in Jan, but just made do. When I left to return home on the 6th, I stopped by an Aldi on the way and stocked up on fresh produce and a few pantry items I’d been needing. I spent $35 and bought celery, tomatoes, stop light peppers, avocados, sunflower seeds, bread (2 loaves), coffee creamer, mustard, romaine, cuke, marjoram, red onions, carrots (my husband even remarked on how glad he was to see some carrots!). Then I also bought some chips, pita chips and crackers for snacks. I also spent $5 for olives, gravy mix (usually make my own but drippings all gone), pepperoni, mushrooms and rice. Everything is going down very slowly. I’m going to be vigilant and not overbuy for the two of us this month and then see how the freezers look.

    B: Me-toast, hot tea, DH egg bowl with grits and turkey sausage
    L: Me-HM soup before returning home, DH out to lunch
    D: Me-1/2 peanut butter sandwich, DH soup from pantry, grilled cheese

    B: Me-toast, coffee, DH egg bowl with grits and turkey sausage
    L: Me-yogurt and crackers, DH idk
    D: HM pizza with crust from freezer, ground pork (freezer), bacon pieces (freezer), pepperoni, last of green peppers (freezer), last of the tomato paste to make the pizza sauce (freezer), mushrooms, cheese from freezer (still whittling down those 18+ bags of cheese), tossed salad using items from Aldi

    I’ll be making the turkey dishes I’d planned to make last week, this week.

    • Stephanie M. says:

      Yes, Lynn. I buy the Jimmy Dean turkey sausage in links or patties. Sometimes, I buy the “crumbles” too and add them to omelets. Since we started eating that sausage about one year ago, we never went back to regular pork sausage.

  93. Kathy from Ohio says:

    Thursday February 8
    Good morning.
    I am new to this I posted once but my last 2 posts didn’t come on am I doing something wrong? Any suggestions?

  94. Laurie in CA says:

    B – hubs had toast, I had baked oatmeal from the freezer with the last splash of 1/2 n 1/2
    L – it was errand day so we grabbed lunch at our fave Mexican restaurant
    D – hubs ate his lunch leftovers, I had hummus and raw veggies

    I picked up my Zaycon delivery of 20 lb. shrimp and 36 lb bacon. Fortunately I had cleared out the outside freezer over the fridge so I had plenty of room. I made chocolate chip cookies at the request of my daughter. I’ll deliver half to my daughter and I froze the rest of the dough. It was 79 here yesterday. The fruit and nut orchards are going into an early bloom. My little lemon tree is still heavy with fruit and has started to bloom!

    • Laurie, I am so jealous! We got to 24 degrees today but the good thing is…….there was no more snow today! We are hoping to head to Florida in a couple weeks so hopefully we will have a couple hot weeks. lol

  95. I can only dream of 79 Laurie – it will be months before we see those temps her in Eastern Ontario.

    • Laurie in CA says:

      I live in hotsville. In the summer it isn’t unusual for us to have 100+ temps for weeks. Fortunately we have low humidity.

  96. Wed. 2/7/18

    B: Cereal w/ blueberries, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: The guys had their usual packed lunches (and Hubs put some black olives in son’s lunch; he was thrilled). I had a LO black bean burger w/ the last of the Monterrey Jack cheese, the last banana, and a mandarin.

    D: We ate at Souplantation following an appointment w/ my surgeon. (This was planned; we knew we’d hit traffic, and the restaurant is about halfway between the doctor’s office and our home.)

    S/D: I made some chocolate chip muffins, so we each had one before heading out. (Oh, I forgot to mention it yesterday, but I also made a lemon pudding in an attempt to use up some of our lemons.)

  97. Terry calkins says:

    Errand day today. I made a big loop so no backtracking. Since I had to go to the next town over to do some tax items I stopped at the grocery outlet. It’s normally out of my way. Got good buy on girl scout cupcake mixes, gingerbread cookie dough, and bacon flavored cheese. Everything I bought there was about 75% off. Then stopped at cash and carry for veggies. Total spent today including laundry soap just over 21.00. I’m over my limit for the week, but it will even out. Now I’m off to make pudding. Happy days

  98. Stephanie M. says:

    Thursday, January 8

    B – 2 poached eggs on whole wheat English muffin, strawberries/blueberries, and V8

    L – Roast chicken sandwich on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts and tomato, also had 1/2 a banana

    D – One piece of gorton’s frozen fish, last of the leftover mashed potatoes, last of the green beans, and a small side salad

    Took out a large freezer bag of meat sauce for tomorrow and Saturday now that Paul is coming home. It’s quite fun to watch so much disappearing from the freezer bit by bit. This week nothing much came out but starting with the meat sauce tomorrow, there will be quite a bit going during the next week as I get closer and closer to emptying out the freezer of all the proteins.

  99. Thursday 2/8

    Breakfast – Scrambled eggs w/toast

    Lunch – Finished off the odds and ends in fridge

    Dinner – Baked chicken, fried potato’s and peas

  100. Joa in IA says:


    B- The usual for hubby and I.

    L- I made a mini taco salad, hubby ate out with a friend. Son2 school lunch. Son1??

    Supper- Pulled pork quesadillas. Son2 was cooking and that was all he made but he did make 10 of them.! He wanted some extras for Thursday. I’m still working late this week and thankful he doesn’t mind cooking.


    B- Chocolate protein shake, cinnamon oatmeal for hubby. Leftover quesadillas.

    L- Pulled pork sandwich and popcorn. Hubby protein shake. Son1 quesadilla. Son2 school lunch

    Supper- Son2 made chicken tenders & mac and cheese.

  101. Thursday, February 8

    Breakfast: Steele cut oatmeal, oj, & green tea; hubby the usual
    Lunch: flour tortilla (the last) w/peanut butter, 1 carrot, V8 and dried cranberries; hubby ate @ McD’s between working from home & heading into the office for afternoon meetings
    Dinner: crockpot pork chop (the last) w/ potatoes and mushroom sauce and frozen garden green beans
    S/D: hubby had ice cream

    We’ll definitely need to do produce restocking and some staple replenishment this weekend!

  102. Lynn from NC Outer Banks says:

    B: toast, one link of turkey sausage, coffee
    L: yogurt, mandarin, carrots
    D: LO turkey (freezer) LO dressing (freezer from Christmas), tossed salad
    S: pita chips and spinach dip (freezer)

  103. Thursday February 8th

    B – granola and a bagel for hubby, I had raspberries, yogurt and granola

    L – I had a ham and cheese sandwich, hubby???

    S – turkey in pepper, onion , tomato sauce, broccoli and cauliflower in a cheese sauce. Hubby made supper tonight and did a great job of using what needed to be used up. He also found a tiny Christmas pudding in the pantry!

    The fridge is almost empty so will need to shop tomorrow or Saturday.

  104. Thurs. 2/8/18

    B: Cereal w/ blueberries, toast, OJ, coffee

    L: The guys had their usual packed lunches (and I think son had olives again). I had another black bean burger and a mandarin.

    D: Cashew chicken (a soy-free adaptation of Jessica’s recipe), steamed rice, salad, apple and orange slices. (Son went back for thirds (!), so this is definitely a keeper.)

    S/D: Son and I each had a chocolate chip muffin after school; Hubs had a handful of cashews (before he realized what we were having for dinner). We all had lemon pudding for dessert.

    I needed snow peas for the cashew chicken, so I made a quick trip to Sprouts. Bought the said peas, a 3 lb. bag of brown onions, a bunch of green onions (also for dinner; we don’t quite have enough in the garden yet), a head of garlic, and just shy of a pound of trail mix (there’s a scout hike on Saturday). I spent $10.71, nearly half of which was for the trail mix.

  105. My pj plans for the day ended at 9am. I got a call that I needed to sign papers for my husband’s IRA. Our financial advisor loves to shovel snow and has done our snow removal the last 2 times it snowed. He’s in his 40’s we’re 65+. Before I went to his office I went to Omaha Steaks(my part time job) and got him a box of steaks and burgers using gift cards I earned. I also took homemade hot chocolate mix and mini marshmallows. It took all of a half hour.
    When I got home I was catching up on the blogs I follow and remembered a recipe for stir and pour bread. You guys this stuff is amazing!! You dump all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix it up, let it sit for 30 minutes then bake for 45-60 minutes and you are done. My oven must run hot cause I did 50 minutes and it got pretty dark. I did half white and half whole wheat and it is delicious!! You can make swirl bread, rolls and buns out of the dough. If anyone wants the recipe let me know and I’ll post it.
    Feb 8
    Breakfast was the usual for my husband. I had pumpkin bread and a banana.
    Lunch–He took Jessica’s sweet potato zucchini hash and a yogurt and a cutie. I had a bowl of ham and potato soup from the freezer and toast.
    Dinner was a huge salad and a taco chicken quesadilla using chicken meat from the broth making.
    I am going shopping Saturday for butter and tuna. A local store has butter for $1.99lb and tuna for $.50 a can with digital coupons that you can use 5 times. The butter sale is only on Saturday so my husband and I will both use our store cards. We only have 1lb of butter in the freezer and 2 cans of tuna so it’s time to stock up on those items.

  106. Teresa calkins says:

    Breakfast was hash browns and eggs for hubby. I had veggie fried rice. Ran errands. Dropped off dinner for my mom When I got home hubby was having ribs then cottage cheese. I had the last pulled pork sandwich
    Dinner time hubby finished the ribs seems he can never get enough of them. Then he had a baked potato. I made rice with the broth left from cooking ribs. Had some of that with some of the leftover chicken stir fry. I made chili oil yesterday and thawed out some ground pork to make potstickers and wonton soup. That might be a today project. I got such great buys on groceries yesterday. Some things that were greatly reduced are things I never buy but I have visions of trying some new dishes. Some things were bought to finish menus I have planned, and some things were just for fun. Cupcake mixes that taste like girl scout cookies.!! I baked half a box in my microwave Baker last night. Skipped the ganache on the thin mint flavor then served warm with whip cream and chocolate sauce. Hubby was impressed. Sometimes I just have to give him a treat! Love that guy

  107. Kathy in Ohio says:

    Thursday 2/8
    B coffee scrambled eggs with spinach and cheese me, hubs coffee
    L. L/O chicken salad with lettuce hubs chips me apple
    D. L/O past and meet balls garlic bread from freezer, last of garlic bread

  108. Stephanie M. says:

    Friday, February 9

    I just realized that I was dating my last posts for January. What a dope. LOL

    B – 1 whole wheat English muffin, plain, 1/2 a banana, V8, and peanuts

    L – Roast chicken sandwich on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts and tomato

    D – Meat sauce from the freezer over shells and salad

    Paul got home around 2:00. While it’s nice to have a few days to myself every once in a while, it’s also really nice when he comes home again. Looking forward to a nice quiet weekend. He feels especially cold because in Arizona it’s quite hot. Welcome back to reality. LOL

    • Glad your honey is home safe and sound and I bet he was glad to see you. I sure that was a shock to his system so he was probably really glad to see you. LOL…..did you want to go back in time or did the days just go too fast 🙂

      • Stephanie M. says:

        LOL I’m really glad he’s home, although my quiet time did actually go by fast. I had to wake up the dishwasher today since it’s been on a bit of a vacation for the past few days. It’s always nice to have a few days to relax and do my own thing even if it’s nothing but it’s been like a tomb around here so I’m happy he’s back. Today we have to go to the pet store for a few things, a new sweater for our old dog Mandy, who is still hanging on and doing fine, thank God, a new food bowl for one of the other dogs that I broke yesterday, some new dog blankets, and dog and cat food. Other than that, our schedule is clear and later we are expecting a lot of rain so we’re going out now before all that starts and then just hang out all weekend with nothing much to do and that’s fine with us. 🙂

  109. Laurie in CA says:

    B – I had blueberry baked oatmeal from the freezer, not sure what hubs had
    L – I had lentil soup from the freezer, hubs made a burrito out of the l/o Carne Asada
    D – bbq hamburgers with beef and buns from the freezer, chips

    The downside to warmth and early blossom is my allergies are kicking me in the booty. I just want to lay around and sleep even though I have plenty of work to do! Like Scarlet said, tomorrow is another day 😉

  110. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast for hubby sausage eggs and hash browns. I had scrambled eggs with sausage and lemon bread.
    Lunch. Hubby had roast, and some wonton soup. I had wonton soup. Dinner plans for cashew chicken, rice and broccoli.

  111. Kathy from Ohio says:

    Friday 2/9
    B coffee P/B toast and orange for me Hubs waffles from freezer

    L L/O mased potatoes and cauliflower casserole for me and L/O chicken and noodles for Hubs

    D. Take out Chinese

  112. Friday 2/9

    Breakfast – French toast

    Lunch – Noodles soup

    Dinner – Rigatoni w/sauce, garlic toast

  113. Friday, February 9th

    Breakfast: hard boiled egg, oj & coffee; hubby his usual
    Lunch: date w/hubby – 1/2 work day on Fridays – our favorite Japanese restaurant w/gift card
    Dinner: too full from lunch – we each had a glass of wine – the perfect way to end the work week!

    Definitely grocery shopping this weekend !

  114. Joa in IA says:


    B-The usual for hubby and I. School cancelled, we were suppose to get 6-8 inches of snow. Ended up only being 3 inches. Boys slept late.

    L-Work bought pizza today, Hubby out to lunch with a friend. Son1 had leftover over taco stuff. Son2 out to lunch with a friend.

    Supper- Out to eat at the Sushi House. I had teriyaki chicken, the rest had a variety of different sushi.

    Not a great day to eat at home. Hopefully we do better this weekend. I do need to go grocery shopping this weekend.

  115. I am done making broth and all my jars are full! I kept one jar of tomato juice that’s going in the pot roast on Sunday. All of the rest are lined up in the door of the upright. It filled 3 and a half shelves with what is already in there. It looks so pretty and organized.
    My husband tried the stir and pour bread and deemed it a keeper!
    The recipe was posted by Laura on her blog “Heavenly Homemakers”.
    Here’s the recipe as posted:
    4 c whole wheat flour
    2 teas active dry yeast
    2 tbls sugar or honey
    1teas sea salt
    1 egg (optional)
    1/4 c cream(optional)
    2 c warm water
    Stir all ingredients together. Cover and let it sit for 30 minutes. Pour into 9×5 pan. Bake at 350 for 45-60 min. Cool in pan for 15 minutes. Cool completely before slicing.
    For swirl bread put 1/3 of dough then filling of choice, more dough more filling and more dough and bake as above.
    For rolls scoop dough in greased muffin tins. Bake 350 20-25 minutes.
    That is it. I did mine with half white flour and I did add the egg.
    Feb 8
    Breakfast–My husband had his usual breakfast. I had pb toast with my new bread and a banana.
    Lunch–Guacamole and chips and a cutie for me. He had a hamburger, roasted sweet potato coins and cauliflower from the freezer.
    Dinner–We had Jessica”s Sesame chicken with mushrooms and peas over brown rice made in my new Instant Pot. All ingredients were from the freezer and pantry,

    • Thanks, Pat for the bread recipe. I’d love to try it as rolls!

    • Kathy from Ohio says:

      Thanks Pat for the bread recipe can’t wait to try it.

    • Lynn from NC Outer Banks says:

      Hi Pat. I have actually made this bread and it turned out well. It’s been a while so I can’t remember how I did mine exactly. I think I did half white and half whole wheat. There is even a video of a child making this bread so I figured that it was within my expertise 🙂 Had kind of forgotten about it. I never did it as anything other than bread. Might want to try it as rolls or swirl bread. Thanks for the reminder!

      • Lynn those were my thoughts exactly too. When I found the recipe originally we still had foster boys and baking bread was not on my radar, but I can now that it is just the 2 of us.

  116. FRIDAY – FEB 9

    Lots of activity in the kitchen…homemade waffles, veg stock, two pots of turkey stock and turkey/veg soup. Pancake batter in the refrig for morning.

    Breakfast – cup of tea

    Lunch – bean salad

    Dinner – ALDI mussels and clams in garlic sauce with asparagus and mushroom saute.

  117. Fri. 2/9/18

    B: Cereal w/ blueberries, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: Son had his usual packed lunch (w/ olives again). Hubs and I had the last of the black bean burgers, the last of the dill pickles, salad, and applesauce.

    D: Broccoli cheese soup, hm French bread w/ butter, apple and orange slices. Son had milk to drink.

    S/D: Chocolate chip muffins.

    Will have to go to the store for milk and carrots this weekend. We’re nearly out of both. Vons has a good price for grapes as well, so I’ll probably get some. We’re down to just apples, applesauce, and oranges in terms of fruit. Oh, and we have some avocados too, but even though they are fruit I don’t think of them in that way.

    Have a great weekend, all!

  118. Friday February 9th

    B – granola for hubby, yogurt and muffin for me.

    L- beefy nachos. Really good and used some ground beef that needed to be used and a jar of salsa i bought a long time ago. Of course it now leaves half a jar of salsa in the fridge so probably that means chicken salsa one day very soon!!!

    S – turkey vegetable soup from the freezer

  119. I’ve been slacking so several days to catch up.
    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea for both of us
    L – pb sandwich for him, I had some leftovers
    D – Leftover macaroni. and green beans

    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea for him, Tea and a turkey/swiss sandwich for me
    L – pb sandwich for him I skipped
    D – I had a long day and was tired so had him pick up Chinese (fried rice and seafood soup) on the way home

    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea
    L – He too pb sandwich, They provided pizza at the volunteer session.
    D – Leftover Chinese ( and almost always hot tea, I just don’t think to include it usually

    Did go shopping and picked up eggs for .99 and some 1.00 frozen California mix and a few other frozen veg with some dairy.

  120. Stephanie M. says:

    Saturday, February 10

    B – Paul had cereal; I had one slice of whole grain rye toast and Greek strawberries yogurt with strawberries/blueberries

    L – Paul had the leftover meat sauce and macaroni from last night’s dinner; I had a roast chicken sandwich on whole grain with alfalfa sprouts and tomato; also had a pear

    D – Cheat meal tonight – Chinese take out

  121. Saturday 2/10

    Breakfast – French toast

    Lunch – High School Band sub, chips

    Dinner – Leftover chicken over pasta, salads

  122. Saturday – FEB 10

    I’m having a hard time finding the page, even tho I book-mark it, for some reason my computer is not saving it. 🙁

    Breakfast – whole wheat bagel, decaf coffee

    Lunch – a waffle and grapes. DH had a bowl of the turkey/veg soup that I made on Friday.

    Dinner – Turkey/Asparagus Crepes, fried rice and side salad.

    Made Rice Krispie Treats with the kids today, they loved them!

  123. Laurie in CA says:

    B – English muffin from the freezer toasted with butter, 1/2 banana and 1/2 oz almonds for me, hubs had eggs, sausage and toast
    L – hubs made a hamburger from last night’s
    l/o, I pulled a container of taco soup from the freezer
    D – l/o tri-tip (he made a sandwich, I had my meat with brown rice and steamed broccoli)

    I’m making progress on the inside freezer. I went to Trader Joe’s for essentials and spent $70. Ouch.

  124. Kathy in Ohio says:

    Saturday 2/10

    B orange cheese stk and coffee me, hard boiled egg Belvita hubs

    L Panera gift certificate

    D egg and cheese sandwich

    Went to the store for oj half and half and 3 lbs of butter @ 1.99 on sale and yogurt. Spent 73.59 So far this month my goal is 150.00. Have to go to Costco next week for coffee.

  125. Hi everyone!
    We’ve been on a run of leftovers! I tried making several big batches of things to kind of piece together for the end of this week and so far
    It’s worked well. I roasted 3 small chickens on Thursday. I cut the breasts off tonight and made delicious chicken salad with lemon, almonds, a bit of mayo, Dijon, celery, sweet onion, fresh dill and tarragon. We had that on whole wheat pita from the freezer along with a mason jar salad that I made on Tuesday. Last one. I have to make more tomorrow! It’s amazing how they stay fresh and perfect. I’m a geek, yes.
    Friday it was leftovers for breakfast lunch and dinner actually. Pancakes were leftover in the fridge, packed lunches were bean and rice burritos and fruit, and dinner was leftover turkey tetrazzini from Wednesday

    Tomorrow I am planning Shepard’s pie since I have a large container of mashed potatoes left. We shall see how it goes

  126. We did our shopping today at the Kroger store here. We got 10 lbs of butter at $1.99 a one day sale and 10 cans of tuna for $.50. We also got our freebie hearts for Valentines day. We also bought a head of lettuce, grape tomatoes and from the reduced rack we got almost 4lbs of golden apples for $1.98 and 4 small yellow squash for $.99. Hopefully I won’t find anything else to stock up on till March!!
    Feb 10
    Breakfast–My husband had a mushroom and onion omelet, and a bagel. I had pb toast.
    Lunch–Omaha Steaks had a thank you luncheon for all the helpers at Christmas time so we ate there.
    Dinner–Chicken fried chicken., baked potatoes and broccoli and cauliflower.
    It’s snowing for the 4th time this Omaha!

  127. Terry calkins says:

    Sunday morning. I got up to make coffee. Looked in the fridge at all the small containers of leftovers. We’ve been eating lots of leftovers and I think we must both be bored with them. Hubby was looking for something to eat last night. He opted for cold cereal. So this morning I dumped everything that was leftover into a large container. Yogurt, cottage cheese, ramen, wonton soup, broccoli, lettace,. Added the remainder of food from the dogs dish and took the whole works out to the chickens. I saved the cheese casserole for the dog. The chickens are having a smorgasbord and I have zero food waste. I’ll cook some new things today for hubby and me. Winner winner

  128. Laurie in CA says:

    B – pastries we froze from last Saturday
    L – hubs picked up subs as I was knee deep in a cleaning project
    D – hubs had another hamburger, I used l/o tri/tip to make a quesadilla w guacamole from the freezer and raw veggies

  129. Saturday February 10th

    Not a good day for the PC but a good day nevertheless.

    B – granola for hubby, baked apple for me

    L – hubby had grilled cheese at Panera while I had their chicken ceasar salad

    S – a fundraiser for the local hospice

  130. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast hash browns and eggs. Used the last of the lemon sauce and one fresh lemon to make lemon pudding cake. I cooked some macaroni and eggs to make egg salad and a macaroni salad. I have a venison roast in the cooker now. Pulled pork and tomato soup thawing from the freezer. New meals are on the way. It’s already a good day

  131. Stephanie M. says:

    Sunday, February 11

    B – Whole wheat pancakes from the freezer that I made last weekend and turkey sausage

    L – Paul had the leftover Chinese food from last night; I had a roast chicken sandwich on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts and tomato and also a pear

    D – The last two leftover rouladen (stuffed rolled beef) from the freezer from last weekend, the last small head of broccoli from the fridge, roasted potatoes and salad; while I was making the salad, I also made a lunch salad using some of the roast chicken for our youngest daughter’s lunch tomorrow

    We had a restful day today on a very rainy day so this morning since I had some time on my hands, I decided to make bean and beef burritos for our oldest daughter and her family for her freezer; so I made 13 of them using up one of the two bags of whole wheat wraps that I had in the fridge. Then I was wondering what I could make them next. So I made them a batch of Jessica’s whole wheat pancakes like we had this morning. They never had whole wheat pancakes and are very anxious to try them since they try to eat healthy. The burritos are for their cheat meal. LOL Later this week, I will take them over to them. By the time, I was finished putting dinner together, I was anxious myself to get out of the kitchen.

    • Stephanie, sounds like you had a good rainy day. We had the same weather here and I didn’t go to the extreme you have but I did get my menu ready and got some baking done and a few things prepped since I will be out and about at the school this week. It was so nice to have a day in the kitchen with no interruptions. And then it won’t be long until we will be heading to Florida and sunshine and getting to play outside. I am so looking forward to a few nice long walks and especially ones on the beach. Can you tell I am ready for Spring.

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Yes, Mona, I can tell. LOL I am ready too. I am so pleased to hear that you will be going back to Florida again. I remember when you went a few months ago what a nice time you had there. Do you have a time share there or do you rent something or stay in a hotel? What part of Florida do you go to? A few years back, we were in Miami on South Beach for just three days but the first two days were a downpour of brutal rain. LOL But I always welcome any time away from the every day routine. It’s so nice to get away because you feel so rejuvenated when you get back. And it’s nice to spend some time alone with our husbands. Mine is always so busy at work and then on the weekends, especially during the warmer months, he’s busy at home too. Next weekend he’s going to be putting one of those new water heaters in that provide endless hot water. It goes on the wall rather than stand on the floor. Because as it is now, when the shower is going and the dishwasher and then someone else gets in the shower, the hot water disappears quickly. He’s been wanting to do this for quite some time. We have a large Jacuzzi in our master bathroom and when we want to use it, we turn on the hot water but while that’s going, we have to boil 3 pots of water to add to it because our water heater is only 40 gallons and the Jacuzzi would never fill up with hot water with that. What a pain. So we don’t use the Jacuzzi too much because by the time we boil the water and get the tub hot, I usually lose the mood to go in. LOL So I said to him yesterday that he must be so happy to finally be doing this and he said yes and also because it will be a “fun” project. LOL Then we have a grandfather clock in our living room that stopped chiming about two months ago. It still kept time though. This past Saturday, he got on you tube and found a video of a man fixing a clock like ours and learned from him what to do. It just needed to be cleaned on the inside near the gears. Now it works. 🙂 But he is always either busy because it’s necessary or because he just wants to be. I am talking about a man who gets upset when he’s got the lawn all “perfect” and then someone else’s leaves blow over to our lawn. I swear he trims the bushes with a measuring stick to make sure they are all exactly even. He is very handy. He has re sheet rocked different rooms in the house; he paints, does plumbing, electrical, landscaping; he put new pergo floors in our den and kitchen. There’s nothing he doesn’t do. Except, he doesn’t know how to relax. So that’s why I think it’s always nice to get away and focus on some fun rather than work and projects around the house. 🙂 I’m so happy for you!!

        • Stephanie we have one of the endless hot water heaters and we love it! It’s one of the best improvements we’ve done. You and Paul will be so happy.

          • Stephanie M. says:

            Thank you so much Pat!!! That’s good to know. I let will also let Paul know. I was a little concerned about it but I’m glad to hear that you love it. 🙂

  132. Sunday 2/11

    Breakfast – Fried eggs and toast

    Lunch – HS sub and rice pudding

    Dinner – Baked salmon, potato casserole and green beans

  133. We got just enough snow last night to cover everything and then it stopped. Hurray! Today was sunny and we had no wind so it wasn’t bad out at 20 degrees.
    My total spending for the month is $104.93. I’ve done a lot of stocking up on things we were low on that were on sale. Of that total my perishable spending so far is $17.96. We really didn’t need the yellow squash or the apples but the price was to good to pass up and we will use them. The only thing we don’t have that we like is fresh mushrooms but we will survive without them till next time.
    Feb 11
    Breakfast–My husband had his usual. I worked my whole 5 hour shift and grab a day old cinnamon roll. Warming it up in the microwave made it pretty tasty.
    Lunch–My husband ate the leftover Sesame Chicken. I had peanut butter toast.
    Dinner–I made Jessica’s slow cooker pot roast in the oven again. I added tomato juice from my sauce making. an onion and the last of the chopped mushrooms. We also added potatoes and carrots later. I also made bread sticks and gravy. It was very tasty and filling.

  134. Lynn from NC Outer Banks says:

    I had an aunt unexpectedly pass away so DH and I were on the road for her service. (When it rains it pours)

    B: toast, coffee
    L: on road- bbq chicken dinner
    D: ate at relative’s-soup, cornbread

    B: breakfast casserole, coffee
    L: soup
    D: went by to see son and took him out to dinner-burger with fixings

    Brunch: gourmet bagel at restaurant with son
    D: turkey tetrazzini (freezer), tossed salad, sliced strawberries

  135. 2/10

    B- Hubby made pulled pork omelets for all

    L-. Late lunch out,. We were busy running around

    Supper- I wasn’t hungry, the others had a frozen pizza


    B- Hubby made biscuits and gravy. He has been practicing things on the stove top normally only uses them when we camp or on the grill.

    L- None of us hungry

    Supper- BBQ pulled pork quesadillas and mac & cheese.

    Hubby smoked 2 more pork butts Saturday night into Sunday morning. I found 6 butts in the big deep freeze when I got one of the frozen in baskets out. They were 99 cents a pound so a good price when I got them last spring. 4 more to go. We will be eating a lot of pork. I use it like chicken in casseroles.

    Today I made 2 lasagnas (froze one), overnight casserole with pulled pork and browned hamburger for another casserole on Wednesday. It’s an easy dump and bake that uses rotini and alfredo sauce. Needed some easy meals the boys can put in the oven. I have a feeling my coworker won’t be back this week again and I will be working late. It’s a good feeling knowing it’s already to go.

  136. Kathy in Denmark says:

    I think I will probably only be able to post once a week, life is a little crazy!
    Last week went pretty well, but I have been feeling under the weather and out oldest has also been ill, so it hasn’t been easy to get into our routine. To top it off, our youngest still misses her soother and wakes up every evening/night and can’t get back to sleep. She basically cries and screams for a full hour before I can get her to go back to sleep. I am needing a lot of coffee to get trough the day, let me tell you!
    I haven’t written everything down we have eaten, mostly I’m unsure of what we had as snacks. I do know that we have eaten fruit and cut up veggies. We did still eat HM meals and I did use up things from the freezer, so that’s a plus 😉

    Feb. 5th
    B: Oats and milk for DH. Oatmeal with apple sauce for kids. HM bread and coffee for me.
    L: Packed lunch for DH and DD1. Leftover pizza and rye bread with fish for DD2 and me.
    D: Egg salad sandwiches on HM bread for kids. HM burgers and oven fries for adults after kids were in bed.
    S: bananas, leftover apple cake.

    Feb. 6th
    B: Oats and milk for DH. Rye porridge for kids. Toast and coffee for me.
    L: Packed lunch for DH and DD1. Egg salad sandwich for DD2 and me.
    D: Biksemad (Hash) with rye bread and fried eggs.
    S: Strawberry yoghurt, bananas.

    Feb. 7th
    B: Oats and milk for DH. Rye porridge for kids. Toast and coffee for me.
    L: Packed lunch for DH and DD1. Rye bread for DD2 and me.
    D: Oatmeal for tired children. Pasta with a cream sauce for the adults, using up cream and different veggies.
    DD1 ran a high fever that night, so probably why she was so tired.

    Feb 8th
    DD1 still ill, so she stayed on the couch all day. I was also feeling under the weather. Luckily, DH worked from home so I could rest a little.
    B: Oats and milk for DH. Toast for the rest of us.
    S/L: popcorn
    D: Hot dogs

    Feb 9th
    DD1 still home, but DH back at work.
    B: Oats and milk for DH. Rolls with butter for the rest of us.
    L: DH skipped. Rye bread for kids and me.
    D: Rye porridge for kids. Brændende kærlighed (burning love, Jessica made her own version which is on the site 🙂 ) for the adults. I used instant potatoes.
    I spent most of Friday getting ready for hosting our family for brunch Saturday. We were celebrating DD2’s third birthday. I baked bread, made baked beans in the slow cooker, baked birthday cake, cooked bacon, made pancakes etc. I was pretty much wiped put by the end of the day but also pretty ready for company to arrive Saturday 🙂

    Feb 10th
    Brunch: HM bread, HM baked beans, bacon, scrambled eggs, pancakes, fruit, cold cuts, cheese, jams. Coffee, tea, juice. I like to make a big spread to make sure there is something for everyone, but I actually had most of the things I needed for the bruch already, so it actually wasn’t expensive to put together.
    Afternoon: Cinnamon snails made with puff pastry and birthday cake. In Denmark the birthday cake is usually a layered cake with jam and vanilla custard as the filling. I also made hot cocoa and served it with whipped cream 🙂
    D: Most of the guests left in the afternoon, but we invited my brother and his girlfriend to stay for dinner. I had bought ready made pizza dough, so just topped it with pizza sauce from the pantry, some chopped veggies and cheese. Easy peasy 🙂

    Feb 11th
    Brunch: I made some scrambled eggs and served leftovers from Saturday 🙂
    Afternoon snack: Cinnamon snails
    D: Oatmeal for really tired children. Leftover pizza for the adults after the kids were in bed.

    • Kathy in Ohio says:

      Hope your family is feeling better. I can’t believe all you did with not feeling well and a birthday. Hang in there.

      • Kathy in Denmark says:

        Thanks 🙂

        I delegated the cleaning to DH and let’s just say that my house was not clutter free 😉

        I almost decided to buy the bread from our local bakery, but after resting a little on Friday, I found the energy to keep going. It amazes me that resting for as little as 20 minutes can give you a real boost of energy!

  137. Kathy in Ohio says:

    Sunday 2/11

    B coffee bagel with cream cheese (bagel with Panera gift card) both

    L out at a diner in town, hubs was craving their breakfast!

    D L/O Chinese from Friday for me Hubs chipped beef over toast

    Used a few pantry things made ginger bread with a lemon sauce and a Amish friendship bread. Nice day to bake cold and rainy.

  138. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast hash browns and eggs for both of us. Lunch time I made avenison roast in the pressure cooker. I am not familiar with venison so I was a little worried. I used an onion, some beef broth and some dehydrated mushrooms. When it was done I added cubed potatoes and then some beef gravy mix. Turned out well. Lemon pudding cake for dessert. Hubby had a venison sandwich for dinner. I had freezer tomato soup and toast.
    We were tired of Leftovers so happy to have some different meals. We have snow on the ground today…I was so hoping for spring. I have a big bag of broccoli to use. That will feature in a meal today. Maybe a broccoli and cheddar soup. I also have some parmesan cheese to use so perhaps a pasta dish with broccoli on the side

  139. Laurie in CA says:

    B – hubs had an orange banana protein shake, I had bacon, eggs, sprouted wheat toast
    L – hubs had bean soup from the freezer and a chocolate chip cookie, I had hummus, pita chips and 1/2 a pbj sandwich
    D – baked potato, roasted cauliflower and baked chicken breast. The chicken was an old packet from the freezer past its prime. I thought I could revive it soaking it in buttermilk overnight. The buttermilk was past its prime too. It was edible but not so good. We’re chucking the leftovers 🙁

  140. I’m not sure what is happening to my posts but they aren’t showing up. I can’t remember all the specifics of what we’ve eaten anymore, but I did do some baking and meal prep using up some items from both pantry and freezer. We will be hosting a party for 16 year old this Sunday. He was confirmed yesterday. I have made my menu and think I can use up more of the excess, but will have to make more purchases to round out the menu. I grabbed groceries this week from Aldi and a few items from Walmart. So happy to say I hadn’t been to Walmart in over a month. I feel like I always have way too big of a bill when I leave there. I have spent $142.60 so far this month. Also, happy to say that everyone is back in school and hopefully at the end of our run with the Crud that was going around. Hubs and son still cough, but not too bad anymore. Hopefully I can return to regular posting.

  141. Stephanie M. says:

    Monday, February 12

    B – Paul had cereal and a banana; I had a toasted whole wheat bagel with lite cream cheese and peanuts

    L – Paul had a ham and cheese sandwich on whole wheat using up some of the smoked ham I bought from Walmart a few weeks ago and sliced and froze for sandwiches; I had a tuna fish sandwich on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts and tomato; also had a pear

    D – Pasta Fagioli and I also had a small side salad

  142. Monday 2/12

    Breakfast – Nutella toast

    Lunch – Hubby finished off the sub, I had a ham sandwich and we both had rice pudding

    Dinner – Deer steak, mushroom, used us the leftover potato casserole and green beans

  143. Monday February 12th

    B – fruit and yogurt for hubby with a muffin, yogurt for me with a bagel and cream cheese

    L- I had a turkey salad which used the last of a bag of salad mix and most of the l/o turkey breast I cooked the other day,hubby grabbed a banana and??? after the gym

    S – taco salad followed by rice pudding

  144. Feb 12
    Breakfast–We had our usual’
    Lunch– He had leftover spaghetti and sauce topped with l/o meatloaf with broccoli and cauliflower. I had a couple banana nut muffins I made this morning and a cutie.
    Dinner was taco salad and we split a Golden apple

  145. 2/10
    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea
    L – Turkey Sandwich for me, last of the l/o Chinese for him
    D – Chicken and noodles, California mix

    Brunch – Scrambled eggs with bacon bits, hot tea
    Dinner – Chili

    B – Oats and toast for him, pb toast for me, both of us had hot tea
    L – pb sandwich for him, l/o chicken and noodles for me
    D – l/o chili

  146. The weekend just flew by so this will be my catch up post! We headed to the store, finally – $42.36 later we now have: pineapple, mandarins, apples, oranges, bananas, lettuce, green & jalapeño pepper, broccoli, cabbage, eggs, chicken breasts and milk.

    Feb 10 – Saturday
    Breakfast: hubby the usual, English muffin & PB w/coffee for me
    Lunch: h/m sub sandwich + either mandarin or banana, V8 and water for me – hubby had a coke and water
    Dinner: planned dinner out w/friends – total win, no cooking and dinner free with gift cards

    Feb 11 – Sunday
    Breakfast: hubby the usual, steele cut oats (2 extra servings made for my work breakfasts), mandarin & coffee
    Lunch: frozen pizza
    Dinner: h/m chili w/hamburger, frozen garden tomatoes, peppers and onion and corn muffin mix from the pantry

    Feb 12 – Monday
    Breakfast: hard boiled egg, V8 and green tea for me – hubby the usual
    Lunch: we both had leftover chili, I had a mandarin & pinepple spear – I believe he had a banana
    Dinner: h/m Parmesan crusted chicken and steamed broccoli

  147. 2/12

    B- Chocolate protein shake and tea, hubby had oatmeal (we are boring during the week for breakfast). I’m not sure what the boys had today.

    L-. Pulled pork sandwich & popcorn for me, Hubby had a protein shake. Son1 went to Culver’s, Son2 school lunch.

    Supper-. Lasagna and garlic toast. Son1 was suppose to put in the Overnight casserole I made yesterday. He wasn’t home when Son2 got home at 5:15 so he put the lasagna in not realizing the Overnight casserole was in the kitchen fridge and he went to the downstairs fridge and saw the lasagna. I just took the Overnight casserole out of the oven. I was afraid the noodles would get supper soggy by Tuesday afternoon. So Tuesday supper is done.

    Did do some grocery shopping over the weekend. Haven’t added everything up yet but I’m sure I’m probably over what I spent last month.

  148. Oh boy, am I behind.

    Sat. 2/10/18 The guys had a 5-mile scout hike.

    B: Oatmeal, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: The guys ate on the trail (PB/apple butter sandwiches, trail mix, apple slices, and ???). I had a salad w/ a hard-boiled egg and some of the trail mix the guys didn’t finish.

    D: Hodgepodge. Hubs and I had the last of the broccoli cheese soup; son had the last of the cashew chicken.

    S/D: Pistachios, trail mix.

    Sun. 2/11/18

    B: Cereal w/ blueberries, toast, OJ, and coffee.

    L: In N Out burgers.

    D: Hodgepodge. I have no idea what Hubs had. Son had PB toast and an apple. I don’t remember what I had.

    S/D: Treats of various kinds after church (I had a scone; not sure what the guys had).

    Mon. 2/12/18

    B: Pancakes, fried eggs, OJ, coffee.

    L: Ate at Hub’s work after son’s orthodontist appt. Hubs and I had salads and chips. Son had orange chicken and fried rice.

    D: Spaghetti (last package from the pantry) w/ sauce from the pantry doctored up w/ half an onion, a couple of cloves of garlic, some grape tomatoes that needed to be used up, and my last can of cannellini beans, salad, string cheese, and applesauce.

    S/D: I had some pistachios for a snack. Hubs will probably have something when the guys get home from scouts.

    We did make it to Sam’s Club over the weekend. Picked up two gallons of milk and a huge bag of carrots. Spent $6.53. I think this brings my total for the month up to $152.65. I still want to run to Vons to pick up some grapes so we have a little more variety in terms of fruit.

    I also made another batch of cranberry-pomegranate compote (used up a half bag of cranberries from the freezer and the last of the pomegranate juice). I was going to make some more granola, but realized I don’t have enough oats at the moment. Took a turkey roast out of the freezer. I’ll roast it up and then have Hubs run it through the meat slicer to have for sandwiches. I’ll have him run some cheese through the slicer as well.

    I’m starting to see a tiny bit of space in the freezers, and some of our pantry staples are actually running low. I’ll be on the lookout for sales.

  149. Terry calkins says:

    Lots of leftovers again yesterday. I did bake some gingersnaps. That made hubby happy. I spent a lot of time recipe hunting and making a list of items to complete those recipes also incorporating items in the pantry. Hubby got that glazed look he gets when he’s bored. So, I thawed out a rack of baby backs to cook today. That will keep him very happy for a few days

  150. 2/12
    B-Meat grits and hash browns for hubs, yogurt, granola and blueberries for kids and leftover French toast casserole and grapefruit for me
    L-Salad for me, leftover jambalaya and apple for hubs
    D-Philly cheese steak sloppy joe, tater tots and coleslaw

  151. Terry calkins says:

    Ran errands for mom today and took her to the doc. Stopped at Fred Meyer on the way back. Pasta and tuna for 50 cents and peanut butter/honey containers for 99 cents. Winner. 17.28 today so month to date is 87.00. Still under budget even though a lot of what I bought this month is pantry Staples to stock up. Freezer is going down slowly

    • Terry –

      I miss shopping at Fred Meyer but I do have Kroger here in GA. Loved their fresh salmon back in the day….

      Today, I did so well with stock up staples because Kroger had so much labeled as WOO HOO items that I bought 40 items and spent $43.42.

      My great find was Hodgson Mill Almond Flour (11 oz) for $3.99 each [regular price $7.99] so I bought two of them for my kids. One bakes macaroons and the other is transitioning from AP flour to alternate flours in her baking.

      So even tho I may be going over budget [again] this month, some of my purchases are finding their way to good homes and food pantries.

  152. Stephanie M. says:

    Tueday, February 13

    B – Paul had a toasted whole wheat bagel sandwich with 2 fried eggs, turkey bacon, and cheese; I had a toasted whole wheat bagel with lite cream cheese, and peanuts

    L – I had leftover white rice in the fridge from the Chinese take out on Saturday night so for Paul, I fried that in some butter with chopped onions and added the last of the chopped broccoli from the freezer and grated cheddar; there is some left for his lunch tomorrow; I had a tuna fish sandwich on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts and tomato and also a pear

    D – Asian salmon, Greek lemon roasted potatoes, salad

    • Stephanie –

      Congrats to your Paul on the honors bestowed on him for his hard work at the conference in AZ!!!

      I see you made a dish called Asian Salmon – Can you give me the low-down on how to make Asian Salmon? I’m hoping to make Salmon during Lent as I have some in the freezer and could use a good recipe.


      ~ Felicia

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Hi Felicia:

        Thank you so much!! Paul was very excited.

        Here is the recipe for the Asian salmon. I’m also going to give you the recipe for Greek lemon potatoes just because I think they go well with the salmon.

        Salmon fillets (I buy the bag that has them individually wrapped and I just use what I need. Usually, 2 for Paul and one for me.) But for this recipe, you can make about 6 of them

        4 TBS. low sodium soy sauce
        2 TBS. red wine vinegar
        4 tsp. canola oil
        Powdered Ginger to taste (I use the spice rather than fresh ginger)

        For Sauce:

        Mix all ingredients together; I use quite a bit of ginger since I love the taste of it; Make this a few hours before you are ready to cook. I usually make it in the morning already and let it sit covered on the counter.

        Put salmon fillets on a piece of heavy duty or double layered regular foil and grill on each side till done, brushing the sauce on the fillets.

        Although I’ve never tried it, I’m sure if you want to bake this it would be fine too. I would just put the salmon in a baking dish and pour the sauce over it and bake at 400 till done, maybe about 20 minutes.

        Greek Lemon Roasted Potatoes

        5 – 6 potatoes, peeled and cut into wedges
        1/2 cup oil, canola or lite olive oil
        1 tsp. dried oregano
        1 tsp. garlic powder
        two lemons, juiced
        1/2 cup chicken broth
        ground black pepper to taste

        Preheat oven to 400 degrees
        In a large mixing bowl, add the sliced potatoes and toss them with the remaining ingredients until they are well coated. Let sit for awhile; maybe an hour or so
        Place coated potatoes in a baking pan and pour marinade over them. Bake at 400 for approximately one hour. Carefully turn the potatoes 1/2 way through cooking. After one hour, put potatoes under broiler for a few minutes till brown and crispy. Remove potatoes to a bowl and pour marinade over.


        Happy Valentine’s Day!!!

        • Happy Valentines Day to you and Paul!
          Both of your recipes sound yummy. Can’t wait to try them. Thanks for posting them.

          • Stephanie M. says:

            Hi Pat!! When you try them, let me know how you liked them. I think you will. Sometimes I substitute shrimp for the salmon in this dish.

        • Thanks, Stephanie.

          BTW…my iced coffee mug fell out of my kitchen cabinet and shattered on my kitchen counter. 🙁
          Guess I’ll be on the look-out for yet another one!


          • Stephanie M. says:

            Hi Felicia.

            Oh No!! Isn’t this the second iced coffee mug that broke? Maybe it’s an omen. LOL I’m looking forward to some iced coffee in the summer. But for now, I think we’re getting some snow this weekend. Yuk!!!! Enough already.

  153. Kathy from Ohio says:

    B. Coffee both cottage cheese and peaches from pantry for me Hubs had2 pieces of Amish bread
    L/O pasta and meet balls me L/O mushrooms and noodles. Hubs, the last of both
    D cheese burgers from freezer, macaroni salad carrots and celery

    Tuesday 2/13
    B coffee both cottage and peaches me the last of both. Hubs a dounut at the Senior center, we deliver meals on wheels every Tuesday there.
    L At the Senior center we eat free there for delivering meals
    D. Sausage eggs hash browns and toast

  154. Tuesday 2/13

    Breakfast – Oatmeal

    Lunch – Ham sandwiches

    Dinner – Chicken and French fries

  155. 2/13

    B- Protein shakes for 3 of us. Hubby had cinnamon oatmeal.

    L-. Leftover lasagna for me, hubby ate something not sure what, Son1 pepperoni quesadilla, Son2 school lunch

    Supper- Overnight casserole and a package of frozen sweet corn my mother in-law froze for us back in 2015. I found them under the six pork butts. There are a few more from ’15 we are going to have to use up.

  156. Tuesday, 2/3

    Breakfast: hubby his usual of Basic 4 cereal, oj & coffee – me: oatmeal, green tea
    AM snack: V8 for me and hubs had his mid-morning smoothie of yogurt, spinach, Pom juice and various fruits
    Lunch: leftover chili, mandarin & Greek yogurt for me & hubby had a bacon, cheese omelet and English muffin
    Dinner: tamale pie and coleslaw

    I’m so happy to have fresh fruit & veges back in the house. I can report that we are definitely seeing white space in the fridge and fridge freezer and also our small chest freezer, most of which is the garden produce frozen from last year that seems to be moving at a fast pace. We are down to our last gallon bag of frozen Roma’s, only 2 bags of zucchini left for bread/muffins, 1 bag of zucchini & yellow summer squash for soup, 1 quart bag of rhubarb for bars (we love the taste of spring during winter months) and our last 2 bags of green beans. Our Seed Savers order was placed last week! I’m like a kid with a Christmas catalog when I get my seed catalogs!

  157. Tuesday – FEB 13

    Had a meet up for breakfast with a former coworker this morning and then have been on the run all afternoon! Bought 40 food items to stock up for $43.42 and tomorrow I’ll put away the non-perishables. I have to sort which is for family members, which goes to food pantry and which items stay home with me. Kroger had a so much marked down on clearance.

    Breakfast – Steel Cut Oats and berries at restaurant with former coworker.

    Lunch – whole wheat bagel and cup of tea

    Dinner – GF breaded chicken tenders from the freezer by a company called Nature Raised Farm. They were okay. DH needed some gravy on them, he thought they were a little dry. Served with peas -n – carrots, also from the freezer! Side dish of cheesy grits and side salad.

    Leftover grits will be a late breakfast tomorrow topped with an egg-over-easy as I go meatless for Ash Wednesday tomorrow and then again on Friday.

    Monday we were traveling back home and had vegetable soup for dinner when we got home. Up late doing laundry last night so my energy level is low for putting away groceries.

    I have been patiently waiting to buy an Instant Pot and today was that day! Well, I won’t receive it until Thursday or Friday or Saturday. LOL! Kohl’s has a sale running thru the 19th and were totally sold out. I had to order online from their kiosk in the store. I ordered the 6 qt version. Have heard great things about it. Excited that it also makes yogurt.

    At Goodwill, I found another very large bag of yarn for my crochet afghans that I want to make this winter. I have started a lap afghan and next want to make a larger afghan. I call them potpourri afghans b/c they are made from donated leftover skeins of yarn. I have no idea how the color scheme will look when done but so far, I’m quite pleased. Besides keeping my hands occupied in the evening and out of the snacks, it keeps me busy on road trips too! 😉

  158. Feb 13
    Breakfast was the usual for us both.
    Lunch–He took the last of the broccoli beef, from the freezer, and a yogurt. I had a piece of last weeks breakfast bake from the freezer.
    Dinner–We had homemade shepherd’s pie and a small salad. The ground beef and veggies came from the freezer, the potatoes from the pantry and the gravy was from Sunday’s roast. It was pretty tasty.

  159. Terry calkins says:

    I made breakfast burritos and and coffee in my stainless travel mugs before I picked up my Mom for her fasting blood draw. Then I let her sit in the warm car to enjoy her breakfast while I did her banking and shopping. Made her an extra burrito for another days breakfast. Got good buys at Fred Meyer. Mainly stock up items for the dry pantry I was low on and milk. Lunch I made a rack of baby back ribs, and homemade parmesan noodles. Dinner was what you can find. I planned to make chocolate covered strawberries for hubby for Valentine’s day but forgot to buy the strawberries. Fred Meyer had a free box of candy hearts hubby was happy with. I am hungry for my favorite chocolate covered orange sticks. Googled the recipe. It called for orange juice concentrate, orange extract, lemon extract and lemon juice. I didn’t have those items so I substituted orange jello, unflavored jello and fresh lemon juice. I substituted almond bark for the recipes chocolate chips….fabulous! I will never buy orange sticks again! I love Google!

  160. Tuesday February 13th

    B – fruit and yogurt for hubby and a chocolate chip muffin, I had a sausage and egg English muffin

    L – Grilled cheese for me, hubby???

    S – ceasar salad with chicken

  161. 12/13
    B – Oats and toast for him, sandwich for me, hot tea for both of us
    L – pb sandwich for him, pot pie for me
    D – l/o chili for him, hamburger for me

  162. Tues. 2/13/18

    B: Cereal w/ blueberries, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: Guys had their regular packed lunches (mixed it up a bit w/ the addition of some dried apricots and dried bananas (the bananas were a find from the freezer). I had yogurt w/ compote, pistachios, and carrot and celery sticks w/ ranch.

    D: LO pasta, salad, and applesauce. Yep, the exact same thing as the night before. We’re really exciting like that. ;0

    S/D: Son had some apple slices that he didn’t get to at lunch. Hubs had his PB toast. Nothing for me.

  163. Stephanie M. says:

    Wednesday, February 14

    Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!! Hope you all have a wonderful day. Paul and I will be going out to one of our favorite restaurants on Saturday but since it’s Valentine’s Day today, I at least had to make some kind of special dessert for him. So I made home made mousse; recipe to follow. I, unfortunately, will not be eating any but, since this was the first time I made it, I had to try just a tiny bit and it was like heaven. So easy to make too.

    B – Paul had cereal; I had an omelet with turkey sausage crumbled, chopped red bell pepper and sliced scallions, a whole wheat bagel thin, strawberries/blueberries, and a V8

    L – Paul had the leftover broccoli/cheddar rice that I made for his lunch yesterday, a slice of home made banana bread and a few Hershey’s kisses. One slice of banana bread left in the freezer; I had a roast beef sandwich on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts, tomato and onion, a small side salad and I also had a pear

    D – Fish tacos on whole wheat tortillas, leftover lemon potatoes for Paul and a side salad for me

  164. Stephanie M. says:

    Oops. I forgot the write the recipe for the mousse! LOL Here it is:

    4 egg yolks
    4 TBS. sugar
    2 cups of heavy cream
    8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, melted
    1 tsp. vanilla

    In a medium saucepan, whisk together egg yolks, 2 TBS. sugar and 3/4 cup heavy cream. Cook over medium/low heat, stirring until mixture coats the back of a spoon; 3 to 4 minutes (do not boil). Remove from heat and whisk in melted chocolate and vanilla. Pour into a large bowl, cover and refrigerate until cool

    Remove bowl from refrigerator; mousse will be hard and there will be some yellow mixed in from the egg but don’t worry. With an electric mixer, beat remaining 1 1/4 cups heavy cream with remaining 2 TBS. sugar until stiff peaks form. Stir 1/3 of whipped cream into cooled custard mixture, then gently fold in the rest with a rubber spatula.

    Spoon into serving dishes or mugs; chill, covered at least 30 minutes and up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature before serving. Top with whipped cream. Yummy!!!!!!!!!!!!

  165. Wednesday 2/14

    Breakfast – Oatmeal

    Lunch – Ham sandwiches & pretzels

    Dinner – Baked pork chops, walnut lemon rice pilaf, peas & carrots

    Crazy busy day today but we got our tickets for our Florida trip, stopped at Daughter #1’s house then stopped at my sister’s to drop off papers for her, then picked up a few groceries, came home for lunch and off I went to spend the afternoon at the school for our little guys class for their Valentine’s Day party but he wasn’t there since he now has strep throat!!! Poor little guy is having a rough couple weeks….but he will be with me all day tomorrow so we will just hang out and do whatever he decides we should do. Got dinner ready and I quit for the day! lol

    • We are going to Ft. Myers in March. Where are you going in Florida?

      Strep throat is no fun. Son2 use to get it 3-4 times a year until he got his tonsils out when he was 5 (he is 17 now). Hope you grand son feels better soon.

      • I’m thinking that is what will end up happening to my little guy to Joa. He seems to be the one with all the ailments and can’t fight anything off. He has an appointment set up with a specialist so we will see what he has to say and keep our fingers crossed that they can do something to help him. His Doctor said since he has an allergy to seafood is one of the reasons he continues to have these issues. I know there is never any type of seafood in there house ever so it will be a wait and see what the specialist has to say.
        We are heading to Miami/Ft Lauderdale on the 24th for 2 weeks. Really looking forward to it. The way the weather has been here it will be nice even if there is only a few good days while we are there! lol

        • Poor little guy, having allergies is no fun. I took allergy shots for 15 years. I’m very glad I was never allergic to food. Hopefully the specialist can help him.

          The 24th will be here before you know it. The weather has to be better than what we have had too. 50 would be a heat wave.

  166. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast was pumpkin muffins and scrambled eggs. Lunch I had a venison roast sandwich with homemade horseradish. Hubby had ribs. Dinner was cheesy broccoli soup made with cheddar and cream cheese.
    I think tomorrow I will use the leftovers. Leftover pumpkin will make pumpkin waffles, and wrinkly apples will be cooked with butter and brown sugar for topping. pasta and some leftover roast to make meat and broccoli lomein. We don’t mind leftovers too much if they come back in a different form

  167. Wednesday, 2/14

    Breakfast: hubby the usual; Van’s power grain waffle w/peanut butter, pineapple spear and green tea for me
    Lunch: we both had leftover chili from the weekend, he also had cornbread and banana, I added a mandarin
    Dinner: It’s Minnesota, the high today was a balmy 43 – time to grill – hubby grilled us ribeye steak and I added sautéed mushrooms and added a salad!

    I bought my Valentine his favorite maple frosted long john as a treat – typically we’re a “no gift” kid of people since we always take a winter vacation which this year starts on March 1st.

    Happy Valentines Day everyone!

  168. 2/14

    B- The usual for hubby and I . Boys??

    L- I had leftover overnight casserole, hubby out to lunch, Son1 had overnight casserole, Son2 had school lunch.

    Snack- Customer brought in chocolate waffle cookies with chocolate frosting. Made them in a waffle iron. I didn’t get a chance to talk to her long about how they are made. But they were a soft, yummy cookie.

    Supper-Hubby was cooking and experimenting again with his cast iron pans on the stove. He went shopping for everything so nothing out of the pantry really. Hubby and Son2 had ribeyes, I had an Iowa Chop ( very thick pork chop), Son1 had a brat pattie. He also made steamed broccoli, sauted mushrooms, mashed potatoes and gravy. We all prefer different things but normally cook 1 type of meat but since it was Valentine’s Day he wanted to please everyone.

  169. Happy Valentines Day everyone. My oldest daughter turned 40 today! How does that happen? We are doing her birthday dinner a week from Sunday because everyone is too busy until then. I know I have more commitments this month than I’ve had in the last 6 months!
    Feb 14
    Breakfast–My husband had his usual. I had a couple of banana nut muffins and a cutie.
    Lunch–My husband had broccoli cheese soup from the freezer and tuna salad with crackers. I had tuna salad and crackers and half a Golden apple.
    Dinner–We had small salads, tilapia, roasted vegetables, roasted sweet potato coins, and sauteed apples in butter and cinnamon for dessert.
    Not bad meals for the first dy of Lent!
    I made the stir and pour bread again today and it turned out better than the first time. I mixed it longer and it came out golden brown with a soft crust. Score!!

  170. Happy Valentine’s Day

    B- Oats, eggs and hot tea
    L – PB sandwich for him, l/o meatloaf from freezer for me
    D – Potato soup with smoked sausage and crackers, mandarins

  171. Wednesday February 14th

    B – fruit and yogurt for hubby, baked apple for me and yogurt

    Late lunch – pork chops, cauliflower cheese and brussels sprouts

    After curling we stopped in at Timmy’s for a hot drink and a muffin

  172. Terry calkins says:

    Pat I was rereading your recipe for the stir up bread. It sounded like an easy recipe. I realized it’s basically pancake batter with yeast. I’m making Jessica’s banana pancakes for breakfast. Plan to add yeast and some extra flour to the leftover batter and try baking it. Stay tuned. If it doesn’t turn out as sometimes happens with experiments, the chickens will get it for breakfast.
    By the way. There are recipes available for a very similar style English muffin bread. I made it a lot when my oven was broken. You can bake it in the oven or microwave since it doesn’t need Browning.

    • Terry I love English muffins and English muffin bread is good too! Would you mind sharing the recipe you used? I know if you made it, it has to be very good!! Thanks!

      • Terry calkins says:

        Pat I have used several recipes over the years from the internet. I think the one I used the last time was from Allrecipes. They’re all pretty much the same. But a loaf of bread in 6 or 7 minutes in the microwave is genius!

  173. Laurie in CA says:

    It’s been a super busy week! I’ll be glad to stay home and veg some next week.

    B – I had a berry protein shake, hubs had toast
    L – hubs was starrrrving when he was out finishing up his side business for the month so he stopped by Mickey D’s. He brought home a Grand MAC (ewwww) for him and I had a cheeseburger, we shared the fries
    D – we took our grandson out to Mediterranean food for his 16th birthday. I made his favorite poppyseed cake and sent half home with him. No progress on the freezers or pantry 🙁

    Went to Sprouts for $30 in produce and $8 in dairy.

    B – I had baked oatmeal, hubs had toast
    L – leftover Mediterranean food
    D – hubs had a ham sandwich, I had 1/2 pbj and a tangerine

    B – hubs had a nut pack and a piece of toast, I had 1/2 oz of cashews and half an apple
    L – Valentine’s lunch at our favorite Italian restaurant
    D – hubs ate the last bbq hamburger patty, used ww bread as we didn’t have any buns, I had Nutella toast and half an apple

  174. Wed. 2/14/18

    B: The guys had pancakes, scrambled eggs, OJ, and coffee (for Hubs only). I had an 8 a.m. dr. appt., so I had a tiny pancake w/ some apple butter on it before I ran out the door, coffee (of course!), and then some yogurt and compote when I got home.

    L: Son had his usual packed lunch (with a Reese’s heart tucked in for Valentine’s Day). Then friends gave him a pixie stick and a brownie at school. Hubs and I went out for Mexican for Valentine’s Day.

    D: Neither Hubs nor I were hungry, so we didn’t eat. Son finished up the last of the pasta and also had string cheese and grapes before heading out to volunteer at the library, where he had more (!) candy.

    S/D: Son had the snacks mentioned above. We all had Valentine’s chocolates for dessert. It’s a good thing Valentine’s Day comes only once a year!

  175. Kathy in Ohio says:

    Wednesday 2/14
    B coffee both protein bar me Hubs nothing
    L hubs hot dog at Costco me hard salami sandwich
    D out at favorite BBQ place

    Spent 170.14 So far , my budget was 150.00 but the coffe at Costco was 37.99 and coffee cream was11.29 which both will last for 2months or more. Without them I would be at 120.86. Since this was my first month on the challenge I still have a lot in the pantry and freezers. Next month should be better! My frig never looked so empty and organized!!

  176. Stephanie M. says:

    Thursday, February 15

    B – Paul had a piece of the breakfast casserole I made last week and a banana; I had an omelet with red bell pepper, scallions, and turkey sausage crumbles, a whole wheat bagel thin, strawberries/blueberries and V8

    L – Paul had a business luncheon in NYC. I had a roast beef sandwich on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts, and tomato and the last of the pears

    D – Leftover pasta fagioli from the other night and salad

  177. Thursday February 15th

    B – Toast and marmalade for me, fruit, yogurt and a bagel w/cream cheese for hubby

    L- I finished the soup l/o from the other day and also finished the roast turkey breast as a sandwich, hubby yogurt, toasted bun and freshly made muffin

    S – chicken cooked with the l/o salsa, rice and broccoli

    I made bread and muffins this morning. We were out of bread after breakfast and I had some sour cream that I wanted to use up, so along with a lemon from the fruit drawer and some frozen raspberries, we now have a fresh supply of muffins. More to the point, the fridge is getting emptier by the day. Yeah!!!

  178. Thursday 2/15

    Breakfast – Cinnamon English muffin

    Lunch – Ham sandwiches and potato chips

    Dinner – Strip steak, mushrooms & onions, baked potatoes and honey carrots

  179. Terry calkins says:

    Jessica’s banana pancakes were so good we ate them till we popped. Just a little batter left I made for the dog.
    Leftover day here. I had egg salad and then fettacini Alfredo. Hubby had ribs then broccoli soup. There are still more leftovers for tomorrow. I took a 7# turkey breast out of the freezer to thaw. I’m thinking turkey cutlets are coming and for sure turkey soup and I have everything to make turkey enchiladas. Taking that package out made a nice hole in the freezer. Hope I don’t fill it back up with leftovers

  180. FEB 15 – Thursday

    Busy morning in the kitchen with meal prep. Planned to dedicate 2 hours to meal prep but it took about 30 min longer.

    Search freezer for blueberries, penne and sausage….?

    Spaghetti sauce on the stove…?

    Vegetable scraps in the crock pot for broth…?

    Oatmeal in the rice cooker…?

    Shred 4 zucchini….?

    Make 6 zucchini enchiladas…?

    Freeze 2 cups of shred zucchini …?

    Dice and slice 3 green bell peppers for freezer…?

    Slice, bread and bake eggplant…?

    Shred cheese for blend of cheddar and Mont Jack …?


    Breakfast – cranberry walnut oatmeal
    Lunch – apple w/peanut butter
    Dinner – Penne Pasta in garlic/olive oil sauce and browned Navy beans seasoned with Italian seasoning, black pepper, parmesan cheese and add’l pasta water for the sauce. Dab of butter when serving. Side salad.

    • Stephanie M. says:

      What a lot of work you did. Time to relax now. 🙂

      • Stephanie I only eat shrimp when I am out with friends. My husband is deathly allergic to shrimp since he was in the Navy in the early 70’s. One piece of shrimp causes his throat to swell shut. Pretty scary!! The really sad part is he used to love shrimp.
        I put this here because I can’t reply to your reply

        • Stephanie M. says:

          Oh, well you better stick to the salmon then. 🙂

        • My grandson has the same problem Pat. They don’t ever have shrimp in their house. We found out early with him since we always have our gang at our place for Christmas Eve and his second Christmas here his mom gave him a piece of shrimp and ended up in the emergency room. They are going to test him next month for any other allergies since he is having blotches, that come and go, popping out for the last few days. He was diagnosed with Strep throat and Joa told me that her son has done much better after he had his tonsils removed so hopefully that will take care of atleast one of his issues. Its so hard to see the little ones suffering. Makes Grandma really sad!

    • Holy buckets Batman!! You were very busy!!

    • Great job Felicia!!! A couple hours and you now have breakfast/lunch/dinner for the next couple weeks, atleast!

  181. 2/15

    B- The usual for hubby and I. We lead a boring life when it comes to breakfast.

    L-The last of the Overnight night casserole for me. I made a double recipe of it so I would have enough for lunch this week. Hubby protein shake, Son1 had a frozen pizza. Son2 had school lunch

    Supper- Reheated the pulled pork for sandwiches and chips with dip and pickles.

    Son1 is baking a peach cobbler right now for a school project. I’m so glad I found a Ziploc bag of flour a few weeks ago in the deep freeze. He needed it tonight, he was a bit short with the butter but we are completely out of butter in the deep freeze so it will have to due. I told him next time to let me know when he needs to cook something. He did go and get the canned peaches but thought we would have everything else.

  182. 2/15
    B – Oats, toast and hot tea
    L – he took pb sandwich, I had soft tacos
    D – l/o potato soup for him, I had chicken salad

  183. Thursday, February 15

    Breakfast : hubby the usual + mid morning smoothie – Steele cut oats, pineapple spear and green tea for me
    Lunch: egg salad sandwich , carrots, V8 and water for me – hubby – leftover tamale pie and banana
    Dinner: leftover rice & baked chicken from the freezer + cream chicken soup to make a casserole, garden green beans also from the freezer
    Dessert: hubby had ice cream

  184. Thurs. 2/15/18

    B: Cereal w/ blueberries, toast, OJ, coffee.

    L: Son had his usual packed lunch. Hubs was home for lunch; we had PBJs, crudités w/ ranch dip, yogurt w/ compote, and applesauce.

    D: Oregano-lemon chicken, roasted root veg, salad, applesauce. (Used the last purchased sweet potato plus one of the sweet potatoes Hubs harvested from the garden. We still have lots of sweet potatoes from the garden, so I’ve been looking for ways to use them up.)

    S/D: Son had a string cheese and another Reese’s heart after school. I had some pistachios. Not sure what Hubs had. We all had a Ghirardelli’s chocolate square for dessert.

    This morning I also cooked up a turkey roast, which Hubs will run through the meat slicer for sandwiches. The house smelled so good when he got home around noon, and then we had PBJs. Just not right. (The roast will slice more easily when cold, however.)

  185. It was a very easy day in the kitchen today!
    Feb 15
    Breakfast was the usual for us both. I actually had my pb toast at 7am because I had to leave to watch the 6 year old grandson so his parents could go to parent teacher conferences–the girls went to daycare.
    Lunch–He to the last of the pot roast with bbq sauce and the l/o potatoes. I had a maple long john. My youngest daughter brought donuts over to my son’s house for the kids. They only live a mile apart.
    Dinner–We had the last 2 of the chicken fried chicken from Saturday with the l/o mashed potatoes. I made gravy with broth from the freezer and the frozen green beans as well..

  186. Lynn from NC Outer Banks says:

    This is the sweetest, kindest community here! Thank you all for your expressions of sympathy for my aunt. I really appreciate it. I haven’t had a chance to respond yet individually but wanted you to know how much I appreciated your thoughts.

    Have been crazy busy at work and am heading out of town again in just a bit. It’s my mother’s 87th birthday today so heading to see her and to check on my 90 year old father in rehab. So far, everything continues to be going in a positive direction for him, for which I am very thankful.

    I am continuing with the challenge (though out of town all bets are off. Just doing whatever needs to be done). Haven’t done any more grocery shopping since my Aldi trip and am continuing to use up items in the freezer. I’ll be back in touch when I can be. Thank you all again.

  187. Kathy from Ohio says:


    B. Protein shake with freezer strawberries for me Hubs English muffin with jam and coffee both

    L Me out with a friend Chinese hubs ??

    D L/O macaroni salad sub sandwiches chips and dip

  188. Stephanie M. says:

    Friday, February 16

    B – Paul had Cheerios; I had Bran flakes with strawberries/blueberries; also had peanuts

    L – Paul had a business luncheon; I had a roast beef sandwich with alfalfa sprouts and tomato using up the last of the roast beef; also had 1/2 banana

    D – Our 5 year old grandson was here for dinner and after dinner, he will get a bath and then Paul and I will go back to his house and wait for his mom to come home from work. Dad is working at the firehouse tonight that he’s been assigned to. He is very excited. He graduated from the fire academy on Tuesday.

    We had grilled chicken legs, farfalle with garlic and olive oil and broccoli; Our grandson had grilled chicken, French fries, and broccoli

  189. Terry calkins says:

    Another leftover day here. We seem to have a lot of those. Hubby had his hash browns and eggs for breakfast. I had an apple omelet. Lunch was veggie drawer soup and venison roast sandwich. Strained the soup and saved the veggies for a frittata. Used the broth to soak pinto beans. Added some ham and broth from the freezer. We will have ham and bean soup for the next few days. The best part is seeing those holes developing in the freezer.

  190. Friday 2/16

    Breakfast – Oatmeal

    Lunch – Chicken wraps

    Dinner – Confetti kielbasa skillet and dinner rolls

  191. FRIDAY – 2/16

    Breakfast – cinnamon cranberry oatmeal with decaf coffee

    Lunch – whole wheat bagel with cream cheese and herbal tea

    Dinner – baked cod fish, roasted parsley red potatoes, broccoli.

    Made a huge pot of minestrone soup for the weekend.

  192. Today was another easy day.
    Feb 16
    Breakfast –We had our usual.
    Lunch–My husband took the last piece if fish from Wednesday with left over roasted veggies, I had tuna salad and crackers an l/o sauteed apples.
    Dinner–My husband is working a fish fry tonight and will eat salmon, a baked potato and salad. I had a grilled cheese sandwich and a couple of cuties.
    It must be the night for babysitting. My 12 year old grandson is spending the night. He has bowling in the morning and we will go to 2 stores on the way home. The second store is right by the house and the have lettuce for $.77 a head and bagels for $1.46 a pack. That will be all the shopping I hope to do.

  193. Friday February 16th

    B – yogurt and bagel with cream cheese for hubby, I had a banana, a yogurt and a muffin

    L – we were out and grabbed a sandwich

    S – eggs on toast

    Way too much bread!!!

  194. Kathy from Ohio says:

    Friday 2/16

    B. Protein shake with.banana and raspberries from the freezer. Hubs?
    L. Mickey D’s fish sandwich while running errands me. Hubs?
    D. L/O meatballs from freezer made subs, coleslaw, Mac and cheese with L/O pasta
    S icecream

  195. Fri. 2/16/18–My 53rd birthday. Woo-hoo! 😉

    B: Scrambled eggs, toast, grapes, OJ, coffee.

    L: Son had his usual packed lunch. Hubs and I had Mexican food after my oncologist appointment. (What?? Doesn’t everyone go to the doctor on their birthday? Ha! The dr. appt. went well; my original doctor transferred to the main City of Hope facility, so Hubs and I met the new doc. He’s very personable, and his assistant is the mom of one of my son’s good friends at school–small world. Everything continues to look good, so my treatment plan continues as is.)

    D: Out to Olive Garden to celebrate my birthday. Good thing we had a gift card, ’cause while it’s good, it’s generally out of our budget. Son is definitely a teenager now; that boy ate much more than I did and even more than his dad did. Brought food home. Still feel stuffed this morning. Now I have to figure out how to burn up all those extra calories I consumed yesterday, and unlike my son I do not have a high octane metabolism.

  196. Terry calkins says:

    Stephanie. Did you have your Valentine’s dinner party this year?
    More leftovers today. Scrambled eggs with frozen English muffins for breakfast
    Lunch was leftover roast, mashed potatoes and gravy, lemon pudding. I am thawing a turkey breast. Hubby is thawing out frozen venison burger to make tacos. You know what we will be eating the next few days.

    • Stephanie M. says:

      No Terry, we did not. I decided that I just wanted a break this year. I’ve been doing it the last five years and this year I was a little back and forth about it and finally made the decision to skip it this time. Knowing me, there will be plenty of opportunities for more dinner parties and summer bbqs in the coming months. In fact, tomorrow, we are having a family dinner here. And a few weeks ago, we had a pizza party and ice cream bar here; I’m sure you remember. So a break was in order. LOL

  197. Saturday 2/17

    Breakfast – French toast

    Lunch – I made chicken salad and tuna salad so we had them with crackers that were left over from Christmas and we will have them for lunch this week to get more used up before we leave

    Dinner – Shrimp and French fries

    So glad we will be in the air next week at this time and hopefully no snow until we get out of the airport. Started snowing here about 1 1/2 ago and we have at least 3 inches out there now.

    • Stephanie M. says:

      Hi Mona. It’s 8:30 on Saturday night and for us the snow started around 7:00 while we were in a restaurant. It looks like a very wet, heavy snow and it’s accumulating quickly. Is it the same by you?

      • Yes Stephanie, Once it started it just kept coming and looked so pretty. Thankfully we only got 3 inches and it was pretty out as most people must have stayed home because it looked so pretty most of the day. Hope you didn’t have any trouble getting home.

  198. Stephanie M. says:

    Saturday, February 18

    B – Paul and cheerios and a banana; I had bran flakes and strawberries/blueberries and also some peanuts

    L – We both had roast chicken sandwiches – Paul’s on whole wheat with lettuce and tomato; mine on whole grain rye with alfalfa sprouts and tomato; Paul also had the leftover pasta

    D – Tonight we went to one of our favorite restaurants – Ponte Vecchio – not far from where we live – about 20 minutes. It was nice to get out for a date night/Valentine’s Dinner. For appetizers, we had one order which we split of coconut shrimp – something my fussy husband only tried for the first time in Hawaii and found he really liked it. Then we each had a small salad. For dinner, Paul had filet mignon, stuffed shrimp, mashed potatoes and veggies. I had sea bass dressed with shitake mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes, artichokes, and baby shrimp over a bed of spinach; also there were red roasted potatoes on the plate but I only had one. For dessert, Paul had some kind of chocolate cake with caramel and a scoop of vanilla ice cream. He insisted on ordering me dessert which was chocolate mousse cake. I had three forks of it and then pushed it away. On the way home, we stopped at my mom’s and I gave her the rest. Good thing too or by now, I would have finished it. 🙁

    It was a nice evening. We really don’t go out too often for dinner; I’m not sure why; both of us enjoy a night out once in a while but like everything else, too much of anything is not good. So when we go out for dinner, it’s really a treat. When we came out, it was snowing heavily so once we got home, we jumped into our jammies and now it’s time to get cozy and watch some TV. 🙂 Have to get up early tomorrow because we’re having a family dinner here.

    • Sounds like a perfect evening until the snow came Stephanie! Nothing better than jumping in the jammies and settling down for the night after being out in weather like we have had this year. Enjoy your family dinner. Can’t wait to hear all about it.
      We are going to Daughter #2’s house for dinner, for my birthday , since we won’t be home for it. Was hoping they would just let it go this year but should have known better.

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Thank you Mona.

        I am embarrassed to say that I unfortunately do not remember the exact date of your birthday. Please forgive me and rest assured that this is not one of my stronger areas. I have forgotten many birthdays. Now I write them down. Please tell me when your birthday is and the first thing I’ll do is write it on my calendar so that when I get my next calendar at the end of this year, it will go on next year’s. That’s what I do. I transfer information from calendar to calendar. I am so sorry!!!!

        • Stephanie M. says:

          In the meantime, enjoy your dinner at your daughter’s. 🙂

          • Stephanie, That’s okay I want to forget about it too. lol It is the 26th and that’s why we are heading to Florida….that was my birthday wish…..even though my girls aren’t happy that I chose to get away (They are all about Birthday celebrations, oh….to be young again) but sometimes that’s what happens. We have reached the age that if we don’t enjoy it now, who knows how long we have to enjoy it. So we have gotten selfish. But as you saw they are still having our get together today, which we will enjoy but didn’t want them to feel they have to do this. But we are looking forward to seeing all of them.
            Gotta Love All Our Babes!

      • Have a lovely pre-birthday celebration Mona and have a great trip! Enjoy every minute!

      • Stephanie M. says:

        Thank you for letting me know your birthday, Mona. Never to be forgotten by me again. I’m sure you had a wonderful time at your daughter’s house and a beautiful dinner too. You deserve it. When are you leaving for Florida?

  199. 2/16
    B – Oats, eggs and hot tea
    L – Pb sandwich for him, potato soup for me
    D – Spaghetti with meat sauce, carrots

    B – we both skipped except for hot tea
    L – out to Olive Garden for a delayed Valentines treat
    D – l/o from lunch for me, turkey and Swiss sandwich for him, tea for both of us

  200. Saturday – 2/17/18

    Breakfast – cranberry walnut oatmeal

    Lunch – mushroom topped pizza

    Dinner – minestrone soup


    Made some homemade waffles for my grand littles this morning with free delivery in exchange for some hugs and kisses! 🙂

  201. We are really working on cleaning out the above the fridge freezer.
    Feb 17
    Breakfast–We had l/o egg bake and cuties. He had a bagel and I had ww toast. Grandson had dry Cherrios and a cutie.
    Lunch–Grandson wanted french fries so we did. When we got home I ate a hard boiled egg. Grandson wasn’t hungry. My husband had the last of the tuna salad and crackers and a yogurt.
    Dinner was l/o chicken and veggies. He had his over brown rice and I had mine over mashed potatoes. We both ate the last of the sauteed apples. Grandson had a huge taco and an apple.

  202. Saturday February 17th

    Nothing much inthe way of PC today. I was curling all day and hubby tended bar for us later in the day. I have no idea of what he ate!. The fridge is almost empty!

  203. Katby in Ohio says:

    Saturday 2/17

    B. Protein shake with raspberries from freezer and a piece of sauage for me, hubs English muffin with eggs and cheese and sausage OJ coffee both

    L/O Chinese from lunch out me, hubs ham sandwich and chips
    S. Popcorn at the movies
    D. Coleslaw and tea and toast me Hubs ham sandwich and coleslaw
    S made a pound cake both had that for snack

  204. Terry calkins says:

    It’s clear the decks Sunday morning. I swear the dog knows what day it is. On Sunday morning she gets out of bed early and lays in the dining room to watch me. She’s not allowed in the kitchen while I work, so she lays where she can watch and wait. All the leftovers go in her bowl on Sundays. Roast, gravy, broccoli soup, cheese, crackers and a bit of summer sausage. She made short work of everything. I saved the mashed potatoes that I made yesterday to have as potato patties tomorrow. There is enough bread left for french toast for breakfast.
    I’m bored with leftovers. I really need how to learn how to cook smaller amounts. All the years I raised kids and worked those leftovers were a blessing. Now in my mid 60s with a husband who eats like a bird, not so much!

    • I understand that perfectly Terry. I have always been the same way when it came to cooking a meal. We had gotten used to the girls bringing boyfriends home and then husbands, who like to eat that it was really hard to cut it down to 2, which isn’t always possible but over the last couple years I have gotten better but we still have leftovers atleast 1 or 2 days a week and some times there are things I can put back in the freezer for those crazy days. Which is okay since I have learned to cut back and if there are leftovers we either use them for lunch or dinner. Atleast you have a dog you can share it with. lol

    • I am in the same boat with cooking to much! When we stopped doing foster care we went from 4 teenage boy appetites and 2 adults to three of us(our 18 year old son). Then he went to Boystown so it is just us. It helps that we like leftovers and that he takes his lunch everyday. I try to limit my cooking to 6 servings of protein at the most. We will eat 2 servings for dinner, 2 get put in the basket in the freezer for his lunches and 2 go onto the leftover shelf. Sometimes we eat it again that week sometimes not.

  205. If it’s any consolation Terry you are not the only one who has trouble cooking for 2 (and we only have one son!). I find too that as we get older we eat less. Plus after hubby’s surgery we changed our eating habits and that included not necessarily finishing what was cooked!!

  206. Stephanie M. says:

    Sunday, February 8

    B – We had Jessica’s whole wheat pancakes from the freezer that I made a couple of weeks ago and some turkey sausage; Paul also had a banana

    L – We skipped lunch because we were having family over for dinner at 2:30

    D – Today was a family dinner but not with the kids; they were all busy today. Today it was my mom, my brother, and his girlfriend. They just got back from vacation and we really wanted to hear all about it.

    So I only had one appetizer because I made so much for dinner. It was something called Keftedes which are small Greek meatballs. This was an old recipe I got from one of my Greek aunts and I grew up eating these so I’m so happy I have that recipe. What makes them Greek is that they have dried mint mixed in the meat. I know it might sound yucky to people who have never had them but trust me, they are really very good. And they are always served at room temperature. I remember growing up and going to Astoria, Queens where there is a huge Greek presence and my father’s Aunt and Uncle lived there. The whole family would go there and she always had those meatballs. She’s long passed now but the meatballs live on. 🙂 However, if I didn’t grow up on them and someone told me they put mint in their meatballs, I would run for the hills. LOL (I only put mint in these Greek meatballs not the ones I make for spaghetti and meatballs. LOL)

    For dinner, I had everything I needed in the house. I made a pork roast; I bought a huge one a few months ago on sale and it was so big, I cut it in half and froze the two halves. So now one of them is gone. 🙂 With pork roast, my brother prefers noodles over potatoes and his girlfriend prefers potatoes over noodles so I made both. I cooked the noodles yesterday and today I fried them in a little butter till they were brown and crispy. The potatoes I roasted in the oven. I also made Yorkshire pudding which neither one of them ever had and both loved it. I also made green beans and salad. For dessert, I made a raspberry cream cheese coffee cake and Paul was at the Nespresso machine making espressos and lattes. So it was a nice day and we all had a good time. And I got a huge roast out of the freezer. 🙂 The meat in there is running low. Getting down to the bottom.

  207. Sunday 2/18

    Breakfast – Oatmeal

    Lunch – Chicken salad and Tuna fish on crackers

    Dinner – At Daughter #2’s house – Turkey, stuffing mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, corn and dinner rolls and BD ice cream cake for dessert. It is just so much fun to have all my babies together.

  208. 2/18

    Brunch? Oats for him with leftover Italian from eating out yesterday, I had malt-o-meal cooked in milk, hot tea

    Supper – Creamy chicken linguine with beets and creamed spinach, hot tea

    snacked on chips and white bean dip today and yesterday

  209. 2/17

    B- Chocolate protein shake and tea for me. Not sure what everybody else had. Was my Saturday to work (9 to 1).

    L- Pulled pork quesadillas for all. I was home by 1:30, hubby had mine waiting for me.

    Snack- Went to a 50th wedding anniversary party. Had a cupcake and punch.

    Supper- Get your own. Everyone found something different mainly leftovers from the fridge.


    B- Eggs, hashbrowns and sausage. Hubby was cooking.

    L- Late lunch- hubby and I split an appetizer plate after going to an RV show. Boys stayed home. Son2 was smoking deer meat and had that. Son1 ??

    Supper- No one was too hungry getting late so threw in a couple of frozen pizzas.

    Son1 has shoulder surgery tomorrow morning to repair a torn labral and remove a broken piece of cartilage. Have to go get fitted for the sling at 7:30 and be at the surgery center by 8:30. I did take the week off in case he needs that much time to rest. When he is resting /sleeping I’m going to try and get somethings baked and cooked. Have to see how it goes but that is the plan.

  210. Feb 18
    I did not cook at all today!!!
    Breakfast– My husband fixed his usual breakfast. Our 18 year old son had a 12 hour pass and he asked for donuts for breakfast. I bought 6. He ate 2, I had 1 and my 12 year old grandson took the rest home tonight.
    Lunch–The baby was baptized today so we ate there. I did donate 5lbs of pork and 5 lbs of chicken out of the chest freezer for the celebration. My DIL cooked both in crockpots with bbq sauce.
    Dinner–The son and grandson wanted McDonalds. They had junk and my husband had their chicken salads.

  211. Laurie in CA says:

    This past week was busy! It gets a little tough to keep track. We’re in our mid 60’s and I find I overlook a lot. Since I babysit my grandson 2-3 days a week, I like to have leftovers or soups in the freezer to grab and go for lunch. Hubs is happy with a sandwich or a burrito.

    B – I had baked blueberry baked oatmeal from the freezer, hubs had toast
    L – I had Aunt Sandy’s soup from the freezer and a tangerine, hubs ate his l/o calzone
    D – hubs had a ham sandwich and chips, I had my l/o lasagne
    B – hubs had toast and a TJ nut pack, I had toast w/almond butter
    L – met my hubs for lunch at our fave Mexican restaurant
    D – New York steaks, roast asparagus, baked potato (for hubs) and garlic bread
    B – pancakes, bacon and milk
    L – I had two clementines and some cashews, not sure what hubs had
    D – steak and chicken at a wedding
    B – we both had protein shakes
    L – son brought hubs a burrito from Chipotle, I made a steak quesadilla w/guacamole
    D – I made a crockpot of white chicken chili using numerous things from the pantry and freezer, hubs had toast and a glass of milk

  212. Laurie, I can understand that! We are at the same stage and babysat our 3 youngest grandbabies for the last 9 years, and this year they are all in school and they get off the bus at our house on Tuesday’s but Mom picks them up an hour later. It took us a while to adjust to none of them being here.

  213. Sunday February 18th

    B – yogurt and a cream cheese bagel for hubby, i had toast and jam and ayogurt

    L – I had some cauliflower in the fridge that i wanted to get used up so made some soup

    S – tuna salad

  214. Terry calkins says:

    Breakfast. French toast with an extra egg on top. I boned out that turkey breast. Put the carcass and the skin from one side into the instapot with some dehydrated veggie boullion I made last summer. Cooked it down for an hour then stripped the bones. The meat I put away for casserole or sandwiches. The bones went out to the chickens. One half breast I will use to make cutlets. The other half that still has the skin I will pound flat, stuff and roll for a baked roast.. the broth that pours out of the pot goes to the freezer for a future soup. The rest in the pot, plus the fond in the bottom will be used to cook a pot of rice. I still also have the gravy packet to use. Lots of meals for the 7$ I invested in that breast. All that, and we didn’t eat a morsel of it. Hubby wanted tacos. We didn’t have any crisp shells, so I went to the store while he cooked. I also bought coffee and the few things on my list for this week. 12.15. Now I’m just nder 100$ for the month.
    So, tacos for a late lunch. Later in the day I baked some chocolate mint cupcakes in my microwave. 4 minutes. They come out just like oven baked!
    Snow, wind and hail yesterday morning. The wind blew open our gates, and blew down a tree. The snow came in sideways. Half an hour later the sun was shining. Weird!

  215. Kathy from Ohio says:

    Sunday 2/19

    B. Protein shake me, hubs hot chocolate
    L Out. Mc Donalds ( hubs was having a big Mac. Attack!)
    D. Crock pot chicken with carrots and new potatoes corn
    S. Pound cake and strawberries

  216. Sunday/Monday

    Forgot to post on Sunday. Nothing special for breakfast or lunch. I did quite a bit of baking on Sunday for the week. Orange-cranberry muffins, lemon-blueberry bread and a banana cake.

    Dinner – took out a bag of Nature Raised Farm chicken patties and had them on burger buns with lettuce, tomato, ketchup and mayo with omemade coleslaw.

    Monday –

    Breakfast – banana cake and decaf coffee
    Lunch – zucchini enchiladas with refried beans
    Dinner – Ricotta/Spinach stuffed shells with pizza beans and garlic bread.

    Busy in the kitchen making some dinners for the week. Stuffed shells, eggplant parm. I have a bag of frozen meatballs in the freezer which I’ll defrost and get 4 dinners from these entrees.

    Little bit of space starting to show in the freezer.

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