Wednesday, March 30, 2011

March 30th

Wow the days are flying by as usual. Having freezer meals on hand has saved us several times already! We have added in soccer and fast pitch practice which land right at dinnertime several nights a week. Its been great to have something that is ready to go and quick to prepare!

This is my last week before college classes start. I am working on getting things finished up, caught up and organized. I had one child down this week with walking pneumonia and we have been dealing with several deaths of aquantences. Such a sad time for so many families. I have found myself in a funk and just not getting things done so today I am foucsing and getting back on track.

I will work today on a menu plan for April and another round of freezer meals and grocery shopping. The kids are on spring break next week and I will plan a craft/activity for each day for them for some extra fun. Hopefully I will be posting more regularly UGH I keep saying that don't I!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Freezer Meal Update

So this week I did my first large freezer cooking session. This is something I hope to get back to doing on a regular basis. This took me the equivelent of a day to do, however, I broke it out over two days. In the end, I have 38 meals in my freezer at a cost of $4.45 per meal (average). That is PER MEAL which has enough servings to feed my family of 5 and the potential of leftovers for lunch for me the next day.

In comparrison. This past Tuesday we were running late. I had not planned dinner and didn't have time to really fix anything. I picked up Little Ceasars and spent $31.41 which provided dinner for the 5 of us and lunch for my son the next day so 6 servings. That is $5.24 per serving. Of a meal that is NOT really healthy. The freezer meals which include vegetables if broken down into 5 servings is a cost of $.89 per serving. That is a savings of $4.35 PER SERVING for just one nights dinner!

I did invest a little more $ than I have included in my calculation on items that I didn't use all of (such as olive oil). However, the items I purchased are items I use regularly and would have purchased anyways so it was not a burden on my grocery budget. Here is the breakdown of the groceries I used and the cost I have calculated out for them. Some items I already had on hand and were previously calculated in the grocery budget(such as the potatoes I used for the soup)

Meals I made:
(All recipes came from the book Fix Freeze Feast)
Baked Potato Soup-4
Tomato Basil Soup-3
Cherry Skillet Chicken-3
Tequila Lime Chicken-3
Sesame Soy Sirloin-2
Basil Balsamic Chops-3
Garlic Studded Pork Loin-4
Pork Barley Soup-8
Rice Pilaf-8

I will take 6 of the Pork Barley Soup and 6 of the Rice Pilaf to a Freezer Meal Exchange tomorrow and bring home 12 different meals to try and add more variety.

What I purchased and the cost:

Olive Oil $5.35
Chicken $31.98
Steak $20.85
Pork Loin $36.25
Celery $3.29
Garlic $2.00
Half & Half $0.75
Onion $1.75
Pork Chop $16.58
Carrots $3.99
Tomato paste $1.59
Lime Juice $1.00
Basil $0.24
Sesame Seeds $0.65
Barley $2.78
Cheddar Cheese $6.00
Soy sauce $2.75
Fresh Basil $2.50
Green pepper $5.77
Orange $0.49
Margarita Mix $0.40
Tequila $1.50
Sesame Oil $0.25
Balsamic vinegar $0.25
Chicken broth $2.93
Rice $2.95
Diced tomatoes $7.36
Cherries $3.49
Thyme $0.25
Crushed red pepper $0.10
Gallon ziplock bags $2.66
Quart ziplock bags $0.30

Total Spent: $169
I am already planning my next cooking session its quite addicting!!

Here are a few pictures!
Dishes ready for the freezer

Baked potatoes cooling for the Baked Potato Chowder

Double batch of Rice Pilaf

Pork Barley Soup and Rice Pilaf ready for the freezer

Monday, March 14, 2011

Week of March 13th

Last week went by in a blur. It was a long and emotional week for many reasons. This week, starting fresh and focusing on PREPARATION! With school starting for me soon and the kids sports in full swing I need to be prepared if I am going to stay ontop of things.

This past weekend I was blessed to be able to attend a Freezer Meal class taught by Lindsay Tkacsik author of Fix, Freeze, Feast (if you click on the book title it will take you to their website)the book and the class were an amazing inspiration to kick off my freezer cooking again. If you are a freezer/OAMC/Batch meal fixer or have wanted to try, this book is a must have in your kitchen! You can order it from Amazon at a great price!

I have decided to tackle 3 big projects this week:
* Spring Cleaning
* Batch/Freezer cooking session
* Baking session

I will break these down to one project a day with some (such as spring cleaning) taking a couple. The kids will each have a part in each one of these projects as well, especially the cleaning part :)

Today I will start with the Spring Cleaning. My daughter did quite a few things yesterday that got me started which is AWESOME. I am hoping that this evening I will get to Costco to pick up most of the items needed for both the freezer and baking sessions so that I can start that tomorrow.

I will post pictures as I go along, not of the cleaning that would be boring but the cooking sessions :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Grocery Shopping Week of Feb 27th

This weeks grocery list was VERY small since the menu is made up mostly of whats on hand. I went to one store but then had to stop at Fred Meyer last night and picked up a loaf of french bread to go with dinner.

Cost Cutter:
French fries $3.49
2 butter $5.98
Prawns $3.36
Half & Half $2.99
chocolate chips $2.99
avacado .99
Total: $19.80

Fred Meyer:
French bread $1.99

Total Spent: $21.79
I am leaving this as part of the February budget since the $ was spent IN February. See how others did this week at the Grocery Cart Challenge