Thursday, March 31, 2011

Great Invention!

We were having loads of fun with broken bones in our house. We are having even more fun with baths and showers. . . What? Everyone doesn't know that taping a trash bag around the cast does NOT mean that you can put your arm under water??? Life got much easier when a coworker educated me about this great invention! Namaste.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Christmas that lasts into the New Year!

We got a surprise in the mail... Wonderful Christmas Presents! Now, I just need to get the present mailed that is still sitting here in our hallway. Namaste.

Monday, March 21, 2011

It wasn't quick, but it was easy. . .

I haven't been feeling well for awhile now.
We think that OB got it first. . .
He gave it to MBB. . .
Who gave it to me. . .
And as of getting home from school today. . .MaBell has informed me that I gave it to her.
Hmmm. . .Let's think about that one again.

We've already used up all of my "quick" dinner ideas the last few days, so I need something that, even though it wasn't quick, was easy.

A while back, I found this intriguing recipe for Baked Potato Nachos. I had it on the menu list for last week, but it was quickly substituted with a "quick" dinner. Tonight, I decided to make them - but I changed them up a bit so that they were the main course (see in the link above that you could still see the potatoes? Nope - couldn't see them when I was done - but with all of my trying to keep it easy, I didn't get a picture of mine).

MBB didn't think we had enough and he was right - but I was very close. So, we pulled out two of those handy, dandy Uncle Ben's 90 sec bags and considered dinner complete.

I should admit now - I have some VERY picky eaters in my house.
If they looked at the recipe that I am about to post, at least one of them would refuse to eat this and the other would approach very carefully - but everyone liked it and said that it was a repeat. So, to those of you picky eaters out there (Hi Nicky!!!) - try it! You might like it!

(NOTE: see two are the ingrediants call for 1/2 of the container? Yep - I got this meat idea from another recipe that I made right before I got sick. . .Everyone liked it then too! Picky??? Hmmmm. . .)

Sassy's Modified Potato Nachos
Red Potatoes (I used 4 very big ones and 5 smaller ones)
1lb Ground Beef (Lean)
1pkg Cheesy Taco Seasoning
1/2 jar Corn & Black Bean Salsa
1/2 can Reduced Fat Refried Beans
2 cups Mexican Shredded Cheese (2%)
Shredded Lettuce
**Other Nacho type items**
Sour Cream (Reduced Fat)

Cut the potatoes into wedges, sprinkle with olive oil (I tried butter spray, but had to add the oil part way through). Bake on 450F for 25 minutes, flip the potatoes, 25 minutes more (mine were in longer because I started with butter...may not take that long if you start with oil).

Ground the beef with the seasoning on medium to medium/high heat. Reduce heat to low, add beans and salsa. Simmer until the potatoes come out of the oven.

I used paper towels to get the oil off of the potatoes once they came out of the oven.

Layer on each individual plate (allows for picky eaters to leave off sour cream and such!):

Potatoes, Meat Mixer, Cheese (will melt), Lettuce, **Other Nacho type items - MaBell's black olives come into play here**, Cheese (won't melt), Sour Cream

You will need a fork to eat these. . .
But they are yummy.


Monday, March 14, 2011

Good Sale Day!

I stopped in at Walgreens today and hit my savings target!
OK - I did better than my target.

I would have done even more outstanding had I not picked up a carryall sleeve for my coupon binder. No, I didn't realize how well I was doing or I wouldn't have bought it today.

My Basket:
Right Guard (one was more expensive, so BOGO didn't work exactly right): 4 at $.38/each
Renuzit: 6 at $.10/each

Binder Sleeve: $1.99

Savings: 80.5%

Without the sleeve, the savings would have been: 87.8%
What was I thinking???

Let's hope the rest of my buying trips go this good this week. . .
I'm kinda on target to be a bit over this month - so I need some really good sales.


Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Rising Temper?

I have been experiencing the Rising Temper lately. . .
Yep, from Rising Prices.

Produce: Bananas recently went up about 23%.
Milk: Also up about 25%.
Meat: Yeah, one of my grocery stores even stopped carrying really lean turkey. I'm assuming based on the price increases they have for the non-lean stuff, that the discontinuation was due to the cost.
Lumber: Yes, I am a female and I know the cost of lumber. Let me just say - it is going UP, UP, UP! When I stop by the home improvement store on my way home from work with a list. . .And you know which 2x4s to buy based on the price. . .Well, it is obvious when the costs change.
Gas: I DO NOT want to talk about it! Thankfully, MBB now works from home a majority of the week, so the high cost to fill up my tank is offset by the lower cost of his reduction in driving.

And now that a fellow blogger has
brought the amount size reductions to my attention, I expect the temperature of my blood is going to sky-rocket.


Saturday, March 05, 2011

Coming Up For Air. . .

Yes, I disappeared again (go back a few day and you'll see some post that I just put up).
Yes, I have lots of reasons that I am sure you don't want to read about AGAIN.

I decided to come up for air. . .
And boy did I need it - the air in the basement has so much dust and dry wall flying around that most of my pictures have spots of dust.
Yep, I have to turn the flash off in order to get a decent picture.
Since there isn't much lighting, let's just say that my patience has been sorely tested trying to take pictures.

At this point in time, I don't care if the upstairs is done or not. . . I am begining to realize that I need to celebrate.
So, I have begun laying the ground work with MBB to host an Open House Style Party once the basement is done.
Everyone will just have to close their eyes until they get to the basement.

BUT - Please don't ask for a date. . .
I am a bit buried in drywall mud, paint and all of that stuff. . .
If I try to start working on party details, I may go crazy!

Our basement overhaul plan was to gut the original four rooms and rebuilt them into six. . .
That doesn't include the full bath that is turning into a toilet room.
Half of the rooms will be finished immediately. One may be finished later. Two - yeah well, who needs a finished ceiling in the utility room? We started the week before Christmas 2010 and with a few small breaks, have plowed through night after night.

A favor, if you don't mind?
Don't mention remodeling or the basement to my kids. . .
Yes, it has been night after night - they chose to forget that we took last week off.

I should mention that the drop ceilings and the flooring will be the last thing we will tackle.
We want to get all of the structural changes, walls and all of that good stuff done first.

So, when I say a room is almost done. . .
Don't look up.
Don't look down.
See - it is almost done! :) As of tonight:
Family Room:
Can I say about 50% done? Too much drywall, mudding, sanding, etc still to do to try to claim much more than that. There is a VERY large opening for a door that will get much smaller once we are done with hauling long boards in and out for the construction. . .
So, this room will probably be the last to hit 100%.
Pool Room:
This room is almost done! We just have molding and shelving to install! Exercise Room:
Hmmm. . .Not sure what to say here. Maybe if I could see the room, I could gauge how much was done. But since this room has become the temporary holding bin for everything deemed crafty. . .
Yeah. . .I'll get back to you on that one. Utility Room:
Can I say 100%? No? Why? Hmmm. . .Still seeing through the stud walls means it's not done? OK, I guess it's not done.
About three sheets of drywall and we're done. Nope - no mudding, sanding, painting! :)
Storage Room:
I had this great idea to make the Utility and Craft Rooms smaller and add a Storage / Wrapping Room. We are now looking for cabinets and storage racks. Once I have those, we'll be able to build the last wall and finish it up pretty quickly.
Craft Room:
Hmmmm. . .10%, if I'm feeling generous!
The cement walls have been powerwashed and water-proofed. Can't say much more than that. You see - after it rains, we get this pesky little visitor called a puddle of water. We have to figure out where its door is so that we can make it understand it is no longer welcomed. Once that is done, then we will start building walls and installing insulation, etc, etc, etc.

Time to get back to work!


Thursday, March 03, 2011

Interesting Color. . .

We experienced another injury in our house recently. . .
Let's just say that snowboards and ice don't like each other very well!

OB got bright orange for his first cast - but I didn't get a picture of it.
Yeah, I know - bad blogger. . .

He went in for his second cast today and finally got the color he wanted. . .
I'm starting to think that there must be a certain girl. . .
One who's attention he is trying to get.
You know - the one who's favorite color is pink. . .


Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Generics. . .Food, not drugs!

When I first starting "shopping for deals", I heard "generics are horrible", "generics aren't as good", etc etc. Take your pick. My thoughts were that most generics are comparable to name brands, but there are a few on my "do not buy" list.

As my shopping for deals has transitioned into coupons, I find that I can get name brands for just as cheap, if not cheaper, than the generics.


I have also found that I have a "do not buy" list and a "preferred list" now.

Doesn't everyone?

Yeah, well. . .
The funny thing is, a few name brands have found their way onto the "do not buy" list.
Hey, wait a minute! What are those generics doing on the "preferred list"???

The problem?
Generics are supposed to be cheaper, so. . .No coupons! :(

Occasionally, I will find them on sale (my snack stock pile is looking better after Meijer's sale this week). But, I have found myself spending more money to buy a generic. . .

What can I say?
It's on the preferred list!

Generics on the Preferred List:
Kroger Honey Peanut Butter
Meijer Pretzels
Kroger Turkey Pepperoni