Friday, March 28, 2008

Frugal Friday--44 Cent Sandwich

Its Friday, which means it is time once again for Frugal Friday over at Biblical Womanhood. Instead of sharing an actual frugal tip today, I decided to share with you one of my frugal recipes!! I am going to share my breakfast sandwiches recipe around my house we called them "Mom's McBiscuits" or "Mom's McMuffins"!

" Mom's McBiscuits"

1 tube of Grands Biscuits, baked (85 cents)
1 dozen eggs, cooked ($1.19)
6 slices bacon, cut in half and then cook(54 cents)
5 slices American cheese(55 cents)
2 sausage patties (42 cents)

I made these this morning here is how I put them together. I baked two tubes of biscuits last night for dinner. We ate one for dinner, the rest I cooled and put in a ziploc bag. I also went ahead and cooked a pound of bacon and a package of 8 sausage patties. Before I cook the pound of bacon, I cut the bacon strips in half. Before I cooked the sausage patties, I took the time to flatten them so they looked like mini, thin burger patties(you can see them in the pic below in the container on the left).

Then this morning I took the time to cook the eggs. I just cooked them on the stovetop(scrambled them and then let them set some before turning so I would end up with big egg patty that I cut up to fit on the biscuits) or you can do it like what Mandy does for cooking your eggs instead of cutting them into strips like what she does I would cut them into squares.

So now that everything is cooked for the sandwiches, it is just a quick assembly line. Cut the biscuits in half. Put a 1/2 slice of cheese on one side of the biscuit(I usually fold the whole slice to make 4 squares and then put 2 squares on one sandwich). Put a egg patty on top of the cheese(this will help melt the cheese on the sandwich and help to make it so the egg doesn't fall off the biscuit). Then put your choice of meat on top of the egg. Top with the other half of the biscuit and Voila! A yummy inexpensive breakfast sandwich!! This morning I made 6 Bacon McBiscuits and 2 Sausage McBiscuits, hence the list of ingredients! Only 3 were eaten this morning, the other 5 were individually wrapped and put in the fridge for later consumption!

You can also make these sandwiches with a package of 6 English Muffins($1.00). The sandwiches would cost 62 cents each instead of 44 cents. And you would only get 6 sandwiches instead of the 8 sandwiches with the ingredients listed above.

To reheat the sandwiches, stick the whole sandwich in the microwave for 20 seconds!

Side note....These can be frozen too!! Just let them cool and double wrap! You can put a frozen sandwich in the microwave and heat for 30-40 seconds! or you can let it thaw in the fridge and then heat for 20 seconds in the microwave. For other freezer meals, head over to What a Crock!

**prices are figured using sale prices for the items used, or bulk pricing as in the case of the cheese slices**

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Chicken Rice Casserole

Chicken Rice Casserole/Soup

Chicken (I usually use 6-8 boneless/skinless breasts)
Rice (about 4-6 cups dry or 6-8 cups cooked)
2 cans Chicken Broth
2 chicken bouillon cubes
2 cans of water (usually use the soup not broth cans)
1-2 cans cream of whatever soup (usually use cream of chicken)
Onions (about ½ fresh onion—I usually use dry minced or powder)
Carrots, chopped/diced
Celery, chopped/diced (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp. Poultry seasoning
1-2 tsp. garlic powder

I usually do this on the stovetop. Cook chicken, carrots, celery along with the broth in a skillet. Cook rice separately in my rice cooker and then add it along with the spices to the chicken and veggies when the chicken is cooked completely. Let it simmer for a while for the rice to pick up the chicken flavoring also make sure that there is enough liquid in it. Sometimes I will add milk to it for the extra liquid.

If you want to do it in the oven put it all together without cooking the rice first in a covered casserole dish. Cook @ 350°, if in a glass dish cook @ 325° for about 1 ½ hours.

I usually make the casserole for one meal and then later in the week take the leftovers and make Chicken Rice Soup. You should not have to add any more spices to it. To make into soup add 2 more cans of chicken broth with 2 cans of water (use broth cans this time) and 2 more chicken bouillon cubes. If you are not going to do the casserole first and make soup from scratch, I would cook the chicken and veggies in water so that the chicken can make some of its own broth. Still would cook the rice separately from the chicken. Once chicken is cooked completely and veggies tender, add rice, spices, broth, cream whatever soup, milk (1/2 of a soup can),water, and 2-3 chicken bouillon cubes. I would add the water last as then you can be the judge as to how “soupy” you want the soup.

Looking for more chicken recipes, head over to Jen-Frugal Upstate's Frugal Food Series--Chicken.

Chicken Rice Soup

Chicken Rice Soup

6 cups chicken broth
4-5 carrots, cooked and diced
1 can cream of chicken soup
3-4 chicken breasts, cooked and diced
1/2 can milk(I use the cream of chicken soup can for my measuring cup!)
3-4 cups of water
5-6 cups of cooked rice
2 tsp. pepper
3 tsp. garlic powder
3 Tbsp. minced onion
4 chicken bouillon cubes
1 tsp. poultry seasoning

Put all the ingredients together in a stockpot and simmer for an hour for the flavors to blend. OR you can put it altogether in the crockpot on low for 3-4 hours. Serve with fresh fruit, or a green salad and homemade french bread or honey oatmeal bread or biscuits.

***Notes: Sometimes I use the leftovers from Creamy Chicken or Chicken Rice Casserole to make up my pot of soup!

Looking for more chicken recipes, head over to Jen-Frugal Upstate's Frugal Food Series--Chicken.

Quiet Reading Time

I have been working at tweaking my schedule where I am reading during the day when the kids are doing their quiet time reading after lunch! I think if I can spend a 1/2 hour each day doing some reading, I can get thru the many books on my bookshelves that I have purchased and just not read yet! Here is the first installment of many in that I will share what I have been reading!

Finally after several months, I have finished reading Gary Chapman & Ross Campbell's book, The Five Love Languages of Children. It was a good book. Gary and Ross recommended that as parents we need to use each of the love languages equally with our children. So that the children know how to use all of them when they are grown and out of their parents' care. The authors went thru and discussed each of the love languages like what they did in the couple's version but they added thoughts on how to apply the love languages to children. It definitely has helped me to find what love language works best with each of my five munchkins.

I can't believe that each of my children have a different love language!!! Well, I can believe it because God has created us each uniquely in His image. To make certain of my findings, I am going to work with each one individually with the Love Language Assessment Quiz that was at the back of the book. It will be interesting to see if my thoughts/perceptions of each of my older children is correct. Stay tuned! :)

Today, I have pulled another book off my bookshelf to start reading during our afternoon quiet reading time.....

Some days I feel like I am losing my mind!!! Hopefully, Dr. Leman has some good tips to help me face those days where I feel like my mind has traveled off to some unknown place and I didn't know it!

What are you reading??? Leave a comment!

Government Unit Study

After my post from the other day, I decided I would take the time to share more of the websites that I have found for my Government Unit Study.

General History:
Digital History

USA History --links to US History from 1800-1990

General Government:
Government Unit Study

Ben's Guide to Government

Government Unit Lesson Plans

Civics and Citizenship

Kid Info on Government

US Government--Social Studies for Kids

Civics and Government at Scholastic

C-Span Classroom

Government Unit Study Ideas--Reading Suggestions

Mr. Donn's Government Pages

Little Book on Government

Government Unit Lesson Plans

Constitutional Rights Foundation Lesson Plans --free online government lessons

Easy Fun School--Citizenship

Historical Documents:
US Constitution Facts

Chronology of US Historical Documents

Teaching the Constitution

Kid Info on Historical Documents

Constitution Lapbook

Executive Branch--Presidents:
Online Reference of Presidents

Presidents at

American Presidents: Life Portraits

Inaugural Addresses of Presidents

List of Presidents

Smithsonian's Look at Presidency

American Presidency

Kid Info on Presidents

14 Presidents at America's Library

Presidential Elections at

Presidents--Social Studies for Kids

Library of Congress Portraits of Presidents

Presidents and Elections

Presidents Unit Study

American Presidents---PBS

Virtual Tour-White House

White House for Kids

Lincoln Unit Study

Presidents' Day Lapbook

Presidents' Day Activities

Early America--People & Events --learn about the first few Presidents along with other famous Americans.

Legislative and Judicial Branch--Congress & Courts:
Congress for Kids

American Justice System

Kids in the House--Laws are Made

American Symbols:
Liberty Bell Facts

Mount Rushmore--PBS

World Almanac--National Anthem and other Govt. facts

Flag History

American Flag Mini Unit Study

Stars and Stripes

***Looking for additional websites or curriculum geared towards high school....check here!***

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Meijer Shopping Trip--Savings $106.83!!!

This week, Meijer had plenty of good deals to lure me into their store!! So I decided to do my weekly shopping earlier in the week armed with my coupons, list, and patience(because I shopped by myself!) so that I could take advantage of the majority of the deals! I was able to walk out of the door with only having to get one raincheck and did two minor flops(explain down below)! I also walked out the door having purchased $212. 58 of groceries for $105.75 and a savings of $106.83!!!

Here is what I bought....

  • 2 boxes Keebler Right Bite Cookies buy one @ 3.09 get one free (got these 100 calorie snacks for quick snacks for hubby)
  • 3lbs ground chuck $5.02 (1.69/lb)
  • Lysol All purpose Cleaner $1.49 minus 50 cent coupon =99 cents
  • 2 Lysol Bathroom Cleaners $3.48 minus 2/50 cent coupons = $2.48($1.24/bottle)
  • Lysol All purpose Cleaner-trigger bottle $1.49 minus 50 cent coupon =99cents
  • 10-8count Poptarts $13.34 minus $1.00 checkout coupon = $12.34($1.23/box)
  • Cantaloupe $1.34
  • 3 boxes General Mills Cereal $6.00 minus $1.00 checkout coupon & $1.00/2 coupon =$4.00($1.33/box)
  • 2 boxes Capn Crunch Cereal $4.00
  • 2 boxes Quaker Chewy Granola Bars $4.00
  • 2 6packs Reeses Easter Eggs $2.50(this was after 50% Easter items)
  • 2 packs Edwards Pie slices $3.00 minus $1.00 Meijer Freezer Month coupon & $1.00/2 coupon = $1.00 for 4 slices of pie! This will make a nice at home "date night"!
  • 13 Yoplait Yogurt cups $7.80 minus 2-50 cents/6 coupons =$6.80(52 cents each)
  • 1 box Meijer Chocolate Graham Crackers $1.67
  • 2 tubes of Crest Toothpaste 8.2oz $4.68 minus 2-$1.00 coupons = $2.68 ($1.34 each)

All of the above for $53.87 with tax after sales and coupons!!!

Now for all I got on the 10 for $10 get 11th item free sale...

  • 4 boxes Betty Crocker fruit snacks $4.00 minus 2-60cents/2 coupons =$2.80(70 cents/box)
  • 2 tubes Golden Layers Biscuits $2.00 BUT 11th item Free!!! so 2/$1.00 (50 cents/tube)
  • 5 tubes Grands Biscuits $4.00 minus 2-30cents/2 coupons = $3.40 (85 cents/tube)

  • 1 can DelMonte Peaches $1.00
  • 1 can DelMonte Pears $1.00
  • 3 boxes Little Debbie Snacks $3.00
  • 1-3lb bag carrots $1.00
  • 1 pkg blueberry bagels $1.00
  • 2 Meijer sour cream $2.00
  • Mini Oreos Snack Sack $1.00
  • Mini Nutter Butter Snack Sack $1.00 BUT 11th item = FREE!!!

  • 2 cans(29oz) Tomato Sauce $2.00
  • 2 bottles Joy Liquid dish soap $2.00
  • 2 pkgs Brown N Serve Rolls $2.00
  • 2 pkgs Handi Snacks(cheese and crackers) $2.00
  • 2 loaves Aunt Millies Bread $2.00
  • Mini Chips Ahoy Snack Sack $1.00 BUT 11th item =FREE!!!

  • 6 boxes Pizza Rolls $6.00 minus 2-55cents/1, 1-50cents/1, 3-40cents/1 = $3.20(53 cents/box)
  • 6 boxes Totinos Pizza $6.00 BUT 11th item =FREE!!! so $5.00 for 6 boxes =(83 cents/box)
  • Mini Teddy Bears Snack Sack $1.00
  • 4 Pizza Lunchables $4.00
  • 3 Gatorade 32oz $3.00
  • 1 Lunchable Junior $1.00
  • 1 Betty Crocker cookie mix $1.00 (forgot to take my 50 cents coupon!!) BUT 11th item = Free!!!
With the 10 for $10.00 get the 11th item free sale, I spent $51.88 OOP!!!

All total my trip was $105.75 OOP!!!

At the top of Meijer receipt it has a "box" called "Savings Today", here is what it reads....

Total Meijer Promotions = $8.09
Total Non-Coupon Savings = $83.64
Total Coupon Savings = $15. 10
Savings TOTAL = $106.83

As for my two minor flops, I didn't purchase the $1 Crest Toothpaste like I thought I was so I didn't get toothpaste for free! However, with what I did purchase it was the same cost per ounce for the $1 Crest toothpaste if I hadn't had coupons for the toothpaste.

My other flop was forgetting to check my stash of coupons that I hadn't fully clipped out for more coupons, hence my forgetting my cookie mix coupon! I am very tempted to make a return trip just to get another cookie mix however, I would be wasting more $$ in gas for a 50 cent cookie mix so the coupon is good for a while so maybe one of the other local stores will have cookie mix on sale soon where I can use the coupon at that time.

If you are wanting to get some of the same coupons that I used in my shopping, check here where I have linked them already!

***as a side note, NONE of the coupons I used were doubled!! My area Meijer stores do NOT double coupons!!

To see other's great savings this week head over to Super Savings Saturday and Centsable Shopper Show & Tell !!!

Weblink Wednesday

My oldest ds and I have been doing a Government Unit over the last several months. We have studied the Historical Documents that have shaped our nation, and right now we are going through the branches of government. We have studied the Legislative branch with Congress, Executive branch with Presidents, and now the Judicial branch with the Court System. This past week has been about the different trials(by ordeal, by oath, by combat, and by jury). It has been so fun going through and learning all the details!

The links I want to share with you for Weblink Wednesday are a couple that I found in preparing to do this week's lessons on the Justice System.

American Jury has lesson plans, web and print resources, and hands on activities on the American jury system.

Scholastic has a unit study(Civics, History, Language Arts) called Justice by the People, which is lesson plans, print resources, and hands on activities geared for grades 5-8 on the American Justice System.

For other "weblinks", head over to Valerie's blog--Homeschooling with Encouragement!!

Works for Me Wednesday

I am going to admit that I am a plastic container-aholic!! Just look at the picture and you will see several different shapes, sizes and colors. But I must also say that the containers are what works for me in keeping my storage/pantry room looking organized. I use plastic containers for just about anything! I have two containers with extra light bulbs, one with candles, one with extra batteries. The bigger containers in the picture have all of my family's out of season or wrong size clothes in them. I also have bigger containers that have blankets, flannel sheets and winter gear(like heavy coats, boots, and gloves). It makes life so much easier when it comes to the change of the season to just go and pull the containers that I need for each child and switch the clothes. I have taken the time to label each container with a Sharpie marker, so I don't have to open each container to see what exactly is inside. I don't write "winter clothes" or "spring clothes" for a label. I label by sizes and gender, so I have labels that say "boys 12 & up" or "girls 4 & up" on the containers.

Also what works for me when I need to change on a label on one of the containers is my trusty bottle of Goo Gone(which has alot of uses in my house)! I take a rag with a little Goo Gone on it and wipe the Sharpie marker writing away! Wipe the little greasy mark away with a dry rag and write my new label right on the container.

These plastic containers have not only kept me organized but also have helped when we have needed to move. I don't have to worry about packing up alot of things because they are already packed and ready to move.

So on this edition of Works for Me Wednesday, I guess you could say that I have two things that work for me....plastic containers for storage and Goo Gone for permanent marker labeling removal. So does these things work for you??

For other ideas and tips on what works for others that just might work for you, head over Rocks in my Dryer!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Kitchen Tip Tuesdays

I have found a fast and easy way to make meatballs all the same size without alot of mess and clean-up!!! No more rolling out the meat and trying to cut into same size pieces to roll the meat into balls. I just mix up the meat and then use my Pampered Chef small scoop! This scoop can be used for so many different things other than meatballs. In the summer time, I make a fruit salad with watermelon, honeydew, and cantaloupe! The scoop also is great for making mini cookies for the kids!
See how the meatballs all look the same before they are cooked!!??
Here is the meatballs just out of the oven!
And just in case you would like the recipe, here it is!! Wellllll at least a guessimate recipe as I put some ground beef in a bowl crack an egg in it and then add the seasonings, mix those into the meat if it seems to need more seasonings I will add more then I add bread crumbs til meat doesn't look too wet and then scoop onto a jelly roll pan.

1lb. ground beef
1 egg
1/4- 1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 tsp. garlic powder
1-2 TBSP. italian seasoning
2 TBSP. minced onion
3-4 TBSP. ketchup

Mix altogether well. Scoop into meatballs.

If you don't want to use my recipe, use your meatloaf recipe and just add italian seasoning to it for making meatballs. :)

For more tips to help you in the kitchen, head over to Tammy's Recipes!!!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

**Do I have to plan??? I don’t want to plan meals this week!!! I am so tired of eating the same old dishes week after week! I am just tired of planning! Tired of eating! Tired of cooking! I have tried to find new dishes for my family to try and I get someone not liking what has been fixed. I have been on a mission to find recipes to meals that I think everyone will eat because it just is easier fixing one meal for all seven of us rather than it being a “restaurant style” meal every day! I have LOTS of food in my fridge and freezer and pantry BUT nothing sounds good!!

Okay! Now that I have that all out of my system, here are my plans! They are only plans and can change at the cook’s whim! I haven’t planned a couple of dinners because I am hoping for some inspiration!!! I will update as the week progresses as to what I decide to make those days.

Lunches listed are for the kids and I as hubby usually takes dinner leftovers each day. This week, I am not sure what I am going to be doing for hubby’s lunches seems there isn’t enough leftovers that are portable!!! Hubby doesn’t like eating something for dinner and then turning around and having it for lunch the very next day!

A special thanks to Laura-Organizing Junkie for hosting Menu Plan Monday! Need help with your menus, go check other menus that have been linked at her site! **

Sunday(3-23) Happy Easter!!
Breakfast: eggs, hash browns, sausage links/bacon, and cinnamon roll twists
Lunch: chicken or cheese quesadillas and chips
Dinner: “Homemade Long John Silvers night”=fish, chicken, fries and corn
Snack: snack basket

Breakfast: cereal and leftover cinnamon roll twists
Lunch: leftovers
Dinner: steak(hubby), burgers(kids & I), seasoned pan fries, peas, and rolls
Snack: snack basket or yogurt

Breakfast: waffles and sausage links
Lunch: leftovers
Dinner: Perkins (kids eat free night)
Snack: snack basket

Breakfast: bagels, yogurt, eggs
Lunch: sandwiches and chips
Dinner: Saucy pork chops, rice, peas, and bread(carryover from last week)
Snack: snack basket

Breakfast: pancakes
Lunch: pizza rolls
Dinner: ??????
Snack: snack basket

Breakfast: cereal and toast
Lunch: leftovers
Dinner: BBQ chicken, baked potatoes, corn and bread
Snack: ice cream or shakes

Breakfast: “Cook’s Choice”
Lunch: ?????(it’s the weekend anything goes!)
Dinner: ?????????
Snack: popcorn or snack basket

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Singing Sunday

In celebration of the true meaning of Easter....

Because He Lives
by William J. Gaither

God sent His son, they called Him, Jesus;
He came to love, heal and forgive;
He lived and died to buy my pardon,
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives!

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow,
Because He lives, all fear is gone;
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living,
Just because He lives!

How sweet to hold a newborn baby,
And feel the pride and joy he gives;
But greater still the calm assurance:
This child can face uncertain days because He Lives!

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow,
Because He lives, all fear is gone;
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living,
Just because He lives!

And then one day, I'll cross the river,
I'll fight life's final war with pain;
And then, as death gives way to vict'ry,
I'll see the lights of glory and I'll know He lives!

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow,
Because He lives, all fear is gone;
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living,
Just because He lives!

Happy Easter!!! He is Risen!!