If you do stuff, stuff gets done.......

If you do stuff, stuff gets done.......

Friday, April 4, 2014

Finances on Friday

I found out late Tuesday afternoon that there would be 12 here for supper on Wednesday. I did not want to add shopping to my list of things to do so I planned a menu of easy to make dishes made with groceries on hand. This is what we ate

Chicken cooked on the grill by my husband-thawed and trimmed up Tuesday night.
Twice baked potatoes and baked beans - prepared Tuesday night and then reheated
A big green salad
A big loaf of bread baked in our bread machine
Banana bread and Pecan Pie Squares - both baked early Wednesday when I only had baby JJ to care for, and thankfully he sat happily in his high chair and played with some mini tongs and an empty paper towel tube the entire time I was mixing them up. 

The twice baked potatoes were a big hit. I knew my sons liked them a lot and we were all tickled to see the grand daughter who is a bit opinionated about her food liked them so much, she was picking hers up and eating it like a muffin. She ate 2 small ones and her uncle's empty peel as well.  Twice bakeds require a little effort when making them, but they go together fast and then are easy to reheat. 
Mine are nothing fancy, just baked and scooped out potatoes, mashed with some butter, milk and yellow cheese, S & P to taste. No sour cream or cream cheese are needed for how we like them. I use a small scoop to refill the shells and top each one with a little more grated cheddar.  My family liked them so much,  I really need to make them more often. 

Saturday morning, there were 10 here for breakfast. That menu was

Oven baked bacon- I stockpiled bacon several months ago when the Oscar Mayer was $1.99 a pound but my stockpile is getting low
Scrambled eggs
Freezer biscuits   I like to multiply this recipe by 4 or 6 and keep several dozen in the freezer for meals like this
Cream gravy - that's how we do big breakfasts in Oklahoma 
Bananas, orange juice, coffee and hot tea

What do you all cook or serve when you feed a big group? I am always looking for new menus that are easy and crowd pleasing. 

Paid off the last of my husbands surgery bills. In our experience with these last 3 surgeries, the doctors, physical therapy, home health, etc seem to be happy to take just what our insurance company offered them.  But not the hospitals- they want 100% of what they bill.  Thankfully, husbands work insurance paid about 90% or so, less deductibles. 

As always, we use the free online billpay our credit union offers - it is easy and quick too!

My gardening and second hand purchases have been thrifty so far. 

We are having mild, thrifty weather- not much need to run the heat or air conditioner. 

Have baked all our bread in 2014

Cashed in a few weeks of Swagbucks points for $50 Paypal
if you don't do Swagbucks and want to join,  I would love for you to sign up with my referal link.  My daughter said I should do a post about how I earn them and I will if anyone wants to know.  

We are having a vegetarian supper -This vegetable pasta stirfry. It is so good and we like it so much, we have had it every week, except last week, since I first found the recipe. it is very thrift too- any pasta will work, and just about whatever vegetables you have, especially the ones that need to be used soon- and some garlic and oil.

Walgreens is having 7 days of Egg-Cellent photo deals this week.  I got a free 8by10 collage on Monday and 10 free 4by6 prints yesterday.  

Linking up with Rebecca at Renaissance 

Some of our family and recent guests
Notice what a helper our grand daughter is, stirring the scrambled eggs. 


Courtney said...

We grilled out chicken this week, too. It's been great weather. I was looking at your frugal finds post also-you got some great deals! I'm looking forward to yard sale season starting. I need to try and replace some dishes my kids have broken. We are down to one glass dinner plate lol.

Melanie said...

Wow, you certainly had a lot of people to feed! I don't have much experience feeding large crowds because when we have family gatherings, the person hosting makes the main dish, but then everyone else brings all the sides and desserts. We do online bill paying through our credit union, too. Unfortunately, we still need plenty of heat in the house...it's still very cold here in northern IL.We have never kept it high anyway - 68 during the day and 60-62 at night has always been the norm. I love pasta stir-fry - it's a nice diversion from stir-fry over rice.

Theresa said...

I would be interested in a swagbucks post. It would take me almost a year to get a 50$ paypal card. It took me over five months to get a $25 one. I don't have a blog mind you, not sure if that helps with getting referral points and what not.

Mrs. White said...

I love reading about your homemaking. It always inspires me. Great job on feeding so many with what you had on hand!

Mrs. White

lil red hen said...

I'm like Melanie, when we get together, everyone brings something, but there's always a lot left for me to do. Tomorrow is my birthday and the girls think they're giving me a surprise supper! So all I'm furnishing is paper plates and sodas. lol

terricheney said...

Rhonda how great that you were able to feed twelve so thriftily. I have started pinning a number of vegetarian meals and reading more and more vegetarian recipes. Not wanting to become a full time vegetarian but I am interested in alternate proteins to help save money, especially as I see beef and chicken prices climbing.

Tammy said...

You always offer a feast for your family when they gather at your house, and it's impressive how you pull it together so quickly.
When my big family gathers here, I like to keep it simple with a pot of chili or spaghetti.
Greg likes twice-baked potatoes, so a few times a year I make several and put them in the freezer. They reheat nicely.

Marica said...

Isn't it wonderful to have a house full of people to feed?

You asked for tips. Your breakfast sounds really good-- who doesn't love biscuits & gravy? But one breakfast thing we've found time-saving and crowd-pleasing is the breakfast casserole. Usually the ingredients are assembled in a large casserole dish a day (or two) before, stored in the fridge, and then just popped into the oven early in the morning.

We have so many good recipes. They typically involve layering some kind of (homemade) bread, sausage or bacon, cheese, etc. and covering with an egg-milk mixture. Seasonings are key.

I don't do the cooking-- I'm the prep cook & dishwasher. So from my point of view, these breakfast casseroles are awesome. Even if you offer some add-ons like fruit and such, your overnight guests still don't face a counter filled with frying pans as they make their way to that first cup of coffee or tea.

And may I speak honestly? Overnight guests have a tendency in the morning to want to help. They want to do the dishes. Which, bless their hearts, they will mess up and it will take days to find that favorite spatula, and they for sure don't know how to load the dishwasher like I do. Cutting down on the amount of dirty cookware available for them to mishandle in morning is an added bonus.

Miss Dishywoo said...

Don't you love when you can pull a meal together without needing to go to the store? I was nodding when reading about the twice-baked potatoes. My family loves them and I cannot make too many. Yes, please do a swagbucks tutorial. I looked at it and got nowhere. Just read your previous post - WOW! you got some great things! All the clothing looks just great. I hope to head to my local thrift store tomorrow and pick up some Easter decor.

Rebecca said...

Awesome meals for having no time to prep! That's the way to keep 'em coming! ;-)

I think I have maybe made twice baked potatoes twice in my life. (A sad thing to admit) And they are SO good too!

momma-lana said...

Lasagna is one of my go to dishes for a crowd. Add a salad and some bread and you are done. Meatloaf is easy and I usually put a huge dish of scalloped potatoes in along side to bake.

Breakfast for a crowd at my house usually involves a breakfast casserole and a quick bread such as banana. I have also done a 13 x 9 dish of cheese grits with a pound of browned sausage stirred in and baked. So good. The grits need some fruit as it is a rich dish.

It is fun to have a table full as we rarely do since ours are all so scattered. You are blessed to have your family all so close.

❤️ Rhonda ❤️