Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Yard Sale and Freezer Challenge

I ended up not taking pictures of the actual yard sale. I was too busy doing other stuff and that did not necessarily include helping customers. We had a slow day overall. It was cold to start off and then sunny and warm. I am thinking people stayed home to work in the yard or else were flooded in their yards. We still made a bit of money, and it was a nice day with the neighbors. Here is the aftermath.

Much of this leftover stuff will go to a local women's and children's shelter.

These are all clothes. The majority of it is things from my cousin. She did not want any of it back. I plan to sort and sell what I can on eBay. The rest will go to the shelter.

Next on my blogging topics is a freezer challenge for myself! My freezer is stuffed full and rather unorganized. Here are the pictures to prove it.

Argh! It is annoying to try to get anything out of either freezer and forget doing it without moving half of the stuff. Of course, then it all gets tossed back in willy-nilly. Out of necessity today is the start of a freezer challenge. I will never empty them completely. The big freezer has a couple of deer's worth of meat and plenty of vegetables. I just want to get both freezers under control.

My personal rules are that I can only add to the freezers if it is a great deal. The main purchase I know will go in is SeaPak shrimp. I have coupons expiring soon and this is the only shrimp that does not make me break out in hives so I stock up when I can. I will allow myself to add items to it IF I use only ingredients on hand. The two items that come to mind are these freezer biscuits from A Home with A Smile and homemade rolls or bread. I hope to post some much better after pictures in a few weeks.

My first removal from the freezer was a gallon jug half full of milk and a container of Brunswick stew. It is a slow start but every little bit helps!

And the Winner Is.......

I used Random.org to choose the winner of this contest. The magazine goes to Jill of Frugal Plus, who has a couple of giveaways going on right now. I sent an email your way, Jill. You have until Thursday at 8pm to reply. Congratulations!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Shopping Trip With Totals

Dh and I ventured out in the rain yesterday to run errands. We stopped at two grocery stores and CVS.

Grocery Store #1 - $10.63
5 Roma tomatoes
4 nectarines
3lb pork loin

Grocery Store #2 - $36.01
chips - 2 (I know, I know - no junk food but chips go great with sandwiches)
hamburger buns
brown rice - 3
sliced ham
sliced turkey
lb pkgs. of cheese - 3
corn dogs

CVS - $0.81
Nutter Butter
Aviva meter
goldfish crackers - 2
Veet gel cream - 2

I still need to go to Wal-Mart at the first of the week to finish up my shopping. Then I need to seriously consider a freezer challenge as it is filled to the brim. Lunch was subs yesterday for $11. That along with the rest of the shopping leaves me with about $144 of my budget to spend for the rest of the month.

As for the rain we ended up with about 11 inches in less than a week. That means our garden spot is underwater. I was hoping to plant next weekend, but that will most likely have to be put off. It depends on how much of this excess water the trees drink up over the next 7 days.

Tomorrow is yard sale day. I was pricing all of our stuff when my cousin came by to ask if I would sell her things on halves. So...I spent the rest of the afternoon sorting her things. I have everything partially organized. Hopefully we can set up fairly quickly in the morning. I roasted some coffee so I will have fresh caffeine first thing. I have dough for cinnamon rolls going in the bread machine now. Hopefully we will have good luck and plenty of buyers. Pictures and an update tomorrow afternoon.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April Menu & Monthly Grocery Budget

I have gotten a bit lax about both menu planning and grocery budget. I decided after my money saving month that I should focus on getting this area under control. First my budget for April 1 - April 30. I had $12 left from last month and my normal monthly budget is $200 for a total of $212. Today's spending was $9 on chicken breasts and Johnson's Buddies. I have $203 left for food this month. That includes any planned eating out. I am planning a few errands tomorrow with stops at a couple of grocery stores, CVS, and Walgreens. DH is going with me so we might stop at Subway to pick up lunch.

Here are my menu ideas for this month:

roast, mashed potatoes, squash, bread
Fish sticks, baked fries, salad
Brunswick stew in bread bowls
Hamburgers, chips
Club pasta salad, crackers
Kickin’ Dirty Rice, salad, corn muffins
Sausage, grits, eggs, biscuits
Cubed steak, mac & cheese, veggies
Corn dogs & baked fries
Rustic Chicken Sandwiches on fresh her focaccia, slaw
Korean beef, brown rice, rolls
Waffles & turkey bacon
Chicken Enchiladas, salad
hot ham sandwiches, chips
Big Salads
Herby beef ziti, salad, garlic bread
Shrimp, fries, slaw
Beans & Rice
Taco rice salad
PB&J or Fluff sandwiches
Pork & beans w/ hot dogs & crock scalloped potatoes
Roast sticky chicken, mac & cheese, green beans
Sloppy Joe cups, slaw
Pork Tenderloin, Parmesan noodles, mixed veggies
Turkey breast sandwiches on homemade bread, chips
Pork fried rice
Mac surprise, whole kernel corn, rolls
Pizza, salads
Tuna subs
Turkey ranch wraps
Crock cooker chicken burritos
Beef & bean burritos
French dip sandwiches, slaw, chips
Vegetable frittata
Tortellini, salad, garlic bread
Cheddar apple chicken pitas

I have planned two meals out as well as a few leftover nights. I also have two family dinners this month. I am making a double batch of rolls to take to one meal. For the other I am planning to make some petit fours (saw a recipe in Southern Living I want to try) and something else.

I think we are set on snacks. If I buy anything it will be fruits or veggies. I am planning to use my blog to keep myself accountable and on track. Of course I hope to have extra money to take advantage of any sales over the next few weeks. All of that for $203 or less? Wish me luck!