Friday, May 29, 2009

Weekly Shopping Trip--Savings $92.21

This week's shopping trip was done in the midst of a very busy week! We had two soccer practices, two soccer games, four church play practices, 2 nights of play, hubby home on vacation but working at church for 5 days building set for the play and last but not least my MIL visiting for 48 hours.

I realized that I need some meat in the house! I was running really low on meat and so I found some manager markdown meats this week to help with the bottom line. However, with my shopping being more meat heavy I spent over my $100/week goal! I ended up $9.93 over the $100! Still I don't think that is too bad considering that the last 3 weeks I have been under $100 each time. So it probably has evened/average itself out to $100 for each week!

I also had to make a second trip to Family Fare with my split chicken breasts because they rang up incorrectly! One of the packages the cashier couldn't scan so she ended up ringing up for the regular price rather than the sale price. The other package rang up but not for the right price!

Here is the breakdown of the items that I purchased this week:

Family Fare:
  • 2 gallons milk $3.96

  • 3 lbs carrots $2.37

  • 6.52 lbs split chicken breasts $6.45

  • 1.01 lbs beef strips $3.53

  • 1.89lbs beef stew meat $3.95

  • 2.22 lbs cube steak $6.19

Total OOP: $26.45
Total Savings: $17.18
Total without sales and coupons: $43.63

Duthler's(corner grocery store)

  • 1 head of lettuce 99¢

  • 1 lb Kraft shredded natural cheese $2.00

  • 4 dozen eggs $2.76

Total OOP: $5.75
Total Savings: $3.74
Total without sales and coupons: $9.49

  • 9.77lbs boneless pork loin $15.54

  • 6 Hershey candy bars $2.22

  • 6 Reeses peanut butter cups $2.22

  • 2 pkgs Keebler Chip deluxe cookies $1.98

  • 2 pkgs Keebler cookies $2.28

  • 4 pkgs smoky links $8.00

  • 1 bag 50/60 shrimp $4.99

  • 1 jar salsa 45¢

  • 3 bags frozen corn $3.00

  • 6 tubes cinnamon rolls $7.90

  • 1 tube pizza crust $1.10

  • 2 tubes crescent rolls $2.75

  • 1 tube Italian bread $1.00

  • 1 lb. bacon $3.00

  • 2 lbs tilapia fillets $7.00

  • 2 bags breaded chicken nuggets $8.00

  • 2 bags shredded hashbrowns $4.00

  • 1 bag tater tots $2.00

Total OOP: $77.43
Total Savings: $71.29
Total without sales and coupons: $148.72

Grand Total OOP: $109.93
Grand Total Savings: $92.21
Grand Total without sales and coupons: $202.14

This post is linked at:
  • BeCentsAble's Centsable Savings Stories
  • The Grocery Cart Challenge Weekly Shopping
  • Wednesday, May 27, 2009

    Versatile Homemade Marinade

    Grilling Season is here!!

    Instead of going out and buying a bottled marinade, I make my own with ingredients that I keep in my pantry. What ingredients do I use....olive oil and my choice of spice/seasoning. I put the spice/seasoning in a small bowl and then I wet it with the olive oil. How much olive oil you put it will determine how "hot" you make the spice. You put more olive oil to spice and it will be a "soft flavor. You put just enough olive oil into the spice to wet it and you have just kicked the "hot" of the spice up.

    Last night, I fixed grilled chicken, grilled catfish, and potato pockets along with corn. Instead of just having plain old grilled chicken and catfish. I turned up the flavor and made up a couple different marinades.

    For the catfish, I made it cajun! For some of the chicken, I made it cajun and the rest was lemon pepper. Also for my picky kids, I kept some of the chicken plain(no spices). To grill the catfish, I put one fillet on a piece of foil and then I took my marinade and poured some of it on! Oh just look at the goodness!!

    We also had potato pockets last night. Oh were they good. Instead of using olive oil in the pockets, I find it easier to use sticks of butter or margarine because it seems to "stick" to the potatoes more(as you can see from the pic--they got a little crispy because our grill is acting wacky!). For the potatoes, I put approximately 2 TBSP of butter/margarine and then usually garlic powder and parmesan cheese. So that when it is cooking it makes a garlic butter that the potatoes are cooked in! Yummy! If I don't use garlic and parmesan, I'll use cajun seasoning while still using the butter/margarine over the olive oil. I am sure that you could use the olive oil, I just prefer not to in the potato pockets.

    I make up a bunch of the marinade at once and I use it on fish, chicken, and shrimp,

    Here is the recipe:

    olive oil
    your choice of seasoning/spice

    Mix together. Brush or pour on food.

    This post is linked at:

    Monday, May 25, 2009

    Strawberries & Cream Dessert

    I found a dessert from Betty Crocker to use up some of those cookie mix pouches(other than just making cookies) that I got on sale for 50 cents that I have been in my pantry for a bit!! At the same time, I am able to use an "in season fruit"--strawberries.(look here for more yummy strawberry recipes). I am sure that you could use a homemade sugar cookie recipe to make the crust of this scrumptious dessert. I have used the oatmeal cookie mix and the sugar cookie mix with great results. My personal favorite of the two mixes though is the sugar cookie mix. I might try this dessert with blueberries or raspberries later this summer!

    Strawberries & Cream Dessert

    1 pouch (1 lb 1.5 oz) Betty Crocker sugar cookie mix
    1 stick (1/2 cup) butter or margarine, softened
    1 egg

    1 cup white vanilla baking chips (6 oz)
    1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened

    4 cups sliced fresh strawberries
    1/2 cup sugar
    2 tablespoons cornstarch
    1/3 cup water
    10 to 12 drops red food color, if desired


    Heat oven to 350°F. Spray bottom only of 15x10x1- or 13x9-inch pan with cooking spray. In large bowl, stir cookie mix, butter and egg until soft dough forms. Press evenly in bottom of pan. Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.

    In small microwavable bowl, microwave baking chips uncovered on High 45 to 60 seconds or until chips are melted and can be stirred smooth. In medium bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Stir in melted chips until blended. Spread mixture over crust. Refrigerate while making topping.

    In small bowl, crush 1 cup of the strawberries. In 2-quart saucepan, mix sugar and cornstarch. Stir in crushed strawberries and 1/3 cup water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils and thickens. Stir in food color(if desired). Cool 10 minutes. Gently stir in remaining 3 cups strawberries. Spoon topping over filling. Refrigerate 1 hour or until set; serve within 4 hours. Store covered in refrigerator.

    This post is linked at:
  • Mouthwatering Mondays at From the Land of Monkeys and Princesses!
  • Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam!
  • Tempt My Tummy Tuesday over at Blessed with Grace!
  • I am Blissfully Domestic at Blissfully Domestic!

    **photo courtesy of Betty Crocker because I forgot to take a picture before it was all inhaled!
  • Meijer Deals 5/24-5/30

    Just a reminder, that I am using a West Michigan sale ad and my Meijer does NOT double coupons! Also check the THREE pages ofMealbox coupons there are several cpns that match items in this week's ad! The coupons have had a change in wording, they now say, ONE COUPON PER TRANSACTION. NOT TO BE COMBINED WITH ANY OTHER MEIJER MANUFACTURER DISCOUNT COUPONS. So that means that we can use them with manufactor's cpns!! 

    Don't Forget to check out my friend, Kate at Cooking During Stolen Moments has posted a few meal ideas based on what is on sale this week, head over and read her meal ideas!!!

    Adolphs Unseasoned Meat Tenderizer ~~ B1G1 FREE!

    Center Cut Half Boneless Pork Loin $1.59/lb

    Dole Classic Iceberg Salad 12 oz package 98¢

    Edys Ice Cream 1.5 qt. 4/$10

    Farm Rich Snacks 10-28 oz. Assorted varieties. ~~ 50% off

    Hersheys Candy Singles ~~ B3G3 FREE!

    Homegrown Asparagus $1.29

    Margaritaville Dips or Chips 8-16oz pkg all varieties ~~ 50% off

    Meijer Fresh Whole Chicken 98¢/lb

    Meijer Gallon Milk $1.98

    Meijer Grade A Large Eggs Dozen Carton 98¢

    Peaches or Nectarines 99¢/lb

    SuperPretzel Baked Soft Pretzels 9-13 oz. 50% off
    75/1 cpn 03-15 RP

    Nabisco Snack Crackers, Wheat Thins or Triscuits 7-10 oz. Select varieties. 3/$5
    $1/2 cpn 03-15 S

    Pillsbury Refrigerated Crescent Rolls, Sweet Rolls, Breadsticks or Pizza Crust 8-13.9oz. tube. All varieties. 4/$6
    25/1 cpn 03-15 S(cpn for crescent rolls only)

    Keebler Cookie Sale Select Varieties ~~ 50% off
    55/2 cpn 04-05 RP

    Lawrys Seasonings ~~ B1G1 FREE!
    50/1 cpn 04-05 RP

    Equal Sweetener Packets 50-230 ct., tablets 100 ct. or spoonfuls 4 oz. ~~ 25% off
    $1/1 cpn 04-05 S1

    McCormick Grill Mates Seasonings 2.5-3.4 oz. Select varieties 3/$5
    50/1 cpn 04-19 RP

    Orville Redenbacher's Buttered Popcorn Mini 10 ct. Select varieties. B1G1 identical item FREE!
    40/1 cpn 04-19 S

    Yoplait Fiber One or Go-Gurt All varieties. 2/$4
    50/1 cpn 04-19 S

    Pringles 5.71-6.41 oz. Select varieties. 2/$3
    $1/2 cpn 05-17 PG

    Chi Chis Salsa 16 oz. jar. Select varieties 5/$5
    55/1 cpn 05-17 S2


    Lumin' Air Flameless Candle Assorted varieties. ~~ 50% off

    Meijer Pregnancy Tests, Ovulation Kits or Yeast Infection Treatments ~~ B1G1 FREE!

    Meijer Supplements ~~ B1G1 identical item FREE!

    Nair Bleach or Depilatory Products ~~ B1G1 FREE!

    Bausch & Lomb Soothe or Alaway or AER Relief ~~ B1G1 identical item FREE!
    $3/1 cpn 02-08 S

    Vanity Fair Bowls 18 ct., Dinner or Dispenser Napkins 40 ct. or Everyday Napkins 100 ct. 2/$4
    50/1 cpn 03-29 RP

    Lysol Neutra Air Freshmatic Kit 1 ct. Assorted varieties. ~~ 50% off
    $5/1 cpn 04-05 S1

    Air Wick Freshmatic Kit, I-Motion Kit Assorted varieties. ~~ 50% off
    $4/1 cpn 04-26 S

    Dixie Plates 24-48 ct., Ultra Plates 30 ct., Cold Cups 54 ct. Grab 'n Go Cups 14 ct., Bowls 35 ct., White or Printed Napkins 160-200 ct. 2/$4
    50/1 cpn 05-10 RP

    Sunsilk Shampoo or Conditioner or Styling Products 12 oz. $2.49
    $1/1 cpn 05-17 RP

    Arm & Hammer Advance White Toothpaste 6 oz 2/$5
    75/1 cpn 05-17 S1

    ***Please take the time to check out your local ad, which you can find here!! IF Meijer is not your store of choice, head over to BeCentsAble's Grocery Gathering!!***

    Sunday, May 24, 2009

    Menu Plan Monday 5/24-5/30

    Last week's menu plan went pretty smoothly!  I made creamy pork over noodles rather than pork gravy over mashed potatoes for last Monday and I have to say that it was a hit with the family!

    For this week’s shopping trip, I only had a $100 to work with and I was determined with calculator in hand that I was not going over that amount. I did it and still have some change leftover.   Sara over at Learning the Frugal Life is having an Eat from the Pantry Challenge during May and you can read a glimpse of the positives and negatives of the week here.

    This week’s menus are either going to be quick and easy or fix it and forget it type meals!  This is crunch week for my church’s spring play that my hubby and oldest son are involved in.  My hubby is the technical director so he has lights to figure out and stage/props to finish.  My oldest son has practice every night except Wednesday night.  So hubby and oldest son will be gone every night this week!  PLUS this is the last week of soccer practices for two other sons with them having a game on Saturday.  PLUS my MIL is coming into town on Friday afternoon to be here to see soccer games Saturday morning and spring play on Saturday night.  Thankfully hubby has taken the week off from work this week so we can get in some family time despite all the activities going on.

    For this week, lunches listed are for everyone!  Hubby is home all week!  Also with hubby being home this week, this menu plan might get thrown out the window! LOL It always seems that he is home things like menus get changed more!

    A special thanks to Laura-Organizing Junkie for hosting Menu Plan Monday! Need help with your menus; go check the over 400 other delicious meal plans that have been linked at Laura-Organizing Junkie’s site or look down in my right sidebar for my menu suggestion lists! 

    Sunday (5-24)

    Breakfast: eggs, sausage or steak, hash browns, and banana bread (from freezer)

    Lunch: tacos (leftovers)


    Snack: snack basket


    Monday (5-25)

    Breakfast: cereal, and toaster strudel

    Lunch: pizza treats

    Dinner: chicken clubs served with potato pockets and green beans

    Snack: snack basket


    Tuesday (5-26)

    Breakfast:  waffles and sausage

    Lunch: sandwiches & chips

    Dinner: roast, carrots and potatoes with homemade rolls

    Snack: snack basket

    Wednesday (5-27)

    Breakfast: bagels, and cereal

    Lunch: pizza rolls

    Dinner: roasted whole chicken served with mashed potatoes & gravy, corn and biscuits

    Snack: cookies & milk 

    Thursday (5-28)

    Breakfast: Pancakes and sausage

    Lunch: chicken nuggets

    Dinner:  skillet pork chops served with mac & cheese and green peas

    Snack: snack basket


    Friday (5-29)

    Breakfast: cereal and toaster strudel

    Lunch: sandwich & chips

    Dinner: grilled cheeseburgers served with pan fries and a fresh veggie tray

    Snack: ice cream night          


    Saturday (5-30)  

    Breakfast: “Cook’s Choice”

    Lunch:  leftovers

    Dinner:  grilled lemon pepper chicken served with egg noodles and green beans

    Snack:  snack basket  or popcorn