Saturday, March 14, 2009

Seasonal Menu Plan:::Monique

I finally did it! I put together an entire menu for March, April, and May.

This is what it looks like. I then use my weekly planner and pull off what we would like for the week and then go shopping. I did a special meal for this week since Tuesday is St. Patrick's Day but other then that they all came from this master plan. I'll post more about this tomorrow or Monday.

It does help with the shopping also. I have a good idea when we go to Sam's or Vitamin Cottage how many of something I will need for the next three months. We can't afford to buy everything at once for all three months but the cheaper things I can pick up and then more expensive items (like meat) we decided we would only buy a months worth.

Monday, February 16, 2009


Perhaps it is radical for many of us in this advanced day and age, but to the Williams is normal.

To be honest we actually eat leftovers several times a week, and only once in awhile do the younger ones complain because, hey, peanut butter is better. Sorry, my darling little ones...we are skipping the p.b. for a bit. Rat poop, no thank you.
So tonight we had...leftovers. I have to say that all of us did not eat the same thing. Brandon, Taylor, and I had the leftover chili that my wonderful husband made. He made it Saturday evening as I was in bed with a sinus headache. Oh yes, I will admit that I thought my head was going to explode...not a pretty sight. All I have to say is that on Sunday when we woke up I was able to go to Mass. My head was no longer throbbing as it was the night before. Yes, the chili was spicy, I was sweating like a pig while I was eating it, but it was delicious. I will have to get the recipe from him, but right now he is asleep.

The rest of the children had left over chicken breasts and red rice...aka Spanish Rice.

Boring, perhaps, but it hit the spot!

So, I am posting to give leftovers a shout out! They are good, and hey you can change them up a bit if you would like something different. Like the left over chicken could have been made into chicken tacos, by cutting them up, adding some olive oil, and throwing them into tortillas! Look at it as is being green!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Confessions and Reaffirmation:::Monique

This week was our 15th wedding anniversary.  We ended up going to Casper that day and since our huge tax return was on its way in just a couple of days we splurged.  Actually, I was too lazy to pack a lunch getting ready for my meeting but, hey, it was a good excuse!  So, there is the confession. Now, for the reaffirmation.  Nobody enjoyed our lunch out except for me!  We spent almost a week's worth of groceries for nothing.  DH was not happy with his and the kids barely picked at their meals.  Shaylan did eat her seafood chimichanga but it was an expensive little booger.  So, we have resolved ourselves to taking our lunches with us to Casper.  We also had money left over before DH got paid this week which is a miracle itself.  I think it is because we haven't eaten out at all this year until Wednesday.  We went about 42 days without going  out to eat!  Woo Hoo!  I bet we can refrain from eating out again until we go on vacation next month.  So how is everyone else doing?  

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I Survived!:::Jenn

Picture the Splitting Headache Mama who has pushed through and been productive in spite of it all. This is the same character who knows she had dance class at 4PM which would make 5:30 dinner a challenge--the heroic soul who planned early in the day to pull out a frozen meal (chicken, broccoli, and pasta casserole) that would mean a balanced meal in one dish--one that would cook while she shuttled das kinders to artistic venues. Now picture the same Splitting Headache Mama rushing back into her lair of domesticity (kitchen) to ensure the five extra cooking minutes have not rendered the meal unfit for a family. Are you with me? Can you feel the energy? Now feel her complete confusion, transformed into utter dejection as the opening of her high tech culinary creator (stove) released no heat. Can you see the salvation dinner sitting there in it's cold, frozen defiance, laughing at the unsuccessful attempt to turn it into something usable. If you are still with me on this one, still feeling Splitting Headache Mama's pain (literal or figurative, either one will work), you will understand the amazing strength and perseverance she showed when she took her dejected creativity and went back to the drawing board. She forced herself to open the vault of creativity (refrigerator) and make another attempt. She fought off the Take-Out Monster who attempted to force her to the phone, and endured the "oh they don't really need dinner" doubts that Bad Mommy tried to send her way. Out of the vault came pieces of salvation (leftovers) to be nuked into acceptable (if eclectic) versions of sustenance for a questioning family. Hunger overcame the "we're having what with that?" doubters, and dinner was one again saved. (Enter dun ta da dunnnnn music.)

Sorry no pictures this time, some meals do not warrant being remembered forever!

Friday, January 30, 2009


We went to Casper today for my husband's post-op doctor appointment.  I knew this was coming up, and since his appointment was at 10:30 a.m. I knew we'd be there for lunch because we had grocery shopping to do as well.  Thanks to Jenn's post, I started thinking about what to take yesterday.  First, I decided to hard boil some eggs.  Then, I asked my husband what else he would add to make packing a lunch better for him.  He suggested adding some fruits and vegetables.  So this morning I cut up some cucumbers, green peppers, and baby carrots.  I also took a few bananas.  This morning I packed everything in my L.L. Bean canvas bag.  Here's the list:

6-7 cloth napkins
loaf of bread
peanut butter
container of hard boiled eggs
granola bars
bag of sliced veggies

I also made everyone some watered down juice in their new water bottles.  Liam got one of these for school and I liked it so much I bought everyone one.  It is nice to make them all at once in the morning and everyone has their water/juice for the day.  

We ended up going to Sam's before we ate so we had a few additions.  The daughter refused to eat peanut butter and eggs so she had some cheese that we had just bought, then all the boys had to have some also.  :)  So we added some cheese to the menu and I also found some semi-natural brownie bites for dessert.

The real test was when we got home.  I asked hubby how lunch was.  He was pleased!  He was even happy we are saving money and was satisfied with the addition of the eggs and vegetables. Yeah!  I'm so happy we are figuring out a way to make this work.  I think it would be even more successful if we would go to Casper on a day other than Friday (meatless for us), and if we bought a cooler.  I would have also added trail mix and cheese sticks if I would have had them on hand.

Friday, January 23, 2009


Well, I have had a super busy week, and have some confessions.  I ate out twice in two weeks for work-related things. I forget that a local breastfeeding coalition meets at restaurants, and my "boss" wanted to go out to talk over work things. So, basically, I'm updating my caveats to include things that are tax-deductible. I'm sorry, but it just has to be this way. At least the whole family isn't included in these outings, and I'm trying to be both frugal and healthy in my choices. Sorry.

Monday, January 19, 2009

All They Are Cracked Up To Be!:::Jenn

These perfect little packages of protein, what's not to love? As I am not a vegan, and I buy cage-free, organic eggs, I have nothing but admiration for these little gifts. They are fast, easy, economical, oh so very versatile and always a hit. I can use them in a million different recipes ( well I haven't actually tried, but I have faith). A pretty jar of the hard-boiled versions leaves me prepared for a jaunt into the world with no concerns about hungry kids, and equally prepared for snack time. They can easily be transformed into a meal themselves (egg-salad sandwiches) or used to improve another entree (green salad or tuna sandwiches). The "incredible, edible egg" indeed!