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

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

Monday, August 27, 2018

Eating differently- no meat?

Good morning 
I hesitate some to write this post because people can have very strong opinions on this.  
First, I want to say I am not anti-farm nor do I think animals have more rights than people.  
Second, I think what people eat is their own personal choice and I truly don’t care what they decide to eat. 

I have been dieting all summer.  I’ve spent 2 months following The Trim Healthy Mama plan and 3 weeks following Keto.  Both plans center around protein at every meal, and mostly from animal products.  In all that time,  I lost 10 pounds but was not happy with meals as I truly don’t enjoy eating meat.  I’ve been eating meat all my life but I’ve just got tired of it. 
So for now.  I’m not eating meat.  
I am eating a little dairy and eggs. 
So after some research, I learned it’s called “ovo lacto vegetarian” 
For now, I’m not concerned about GMO or organic, I see there may be some benefit in it, but for now,  I am not convinced.  

My husband is being a great sport about it. He’s enjoying the meatless meals I’ve prepared and has also enjoyed a little meat along the way.  
Grands have been here for meatless meals and they ate and never noticed a difference.  

I did not purge our kitchen and get rid of all animal products,  we will be reasonable about this and not wasteful, nor did I go out and purchase a bunch of specialty products.  I did buy more beans.  We still have a big freezer with many meat products inside,  they will get cooked for company in the future. 

And because I am trying to lose weight,  I am also avoiding sugar and refined grains as much as is reasonable.  

For breakfasts, we've eaten eggs most times. 
 Below we had eggs with hash browned sweet and white potatoes, and my husband had some precooked bacon from our freezer. 

I had a biscuit with all fruit jelly and an egg 

Another egg and toasted seed bread 

Hot tea with scrambled eggs on toasted seed bread.  

Sugar free, fat free vanilla  yogurt mixed with a tablespoon sugar free peanut butter and a tablespoon sugar free chocolate chips is so good, it’s called cookie dough yogurt in the keto and trim healthy mama world.  I really like it and it keeps me full till the next meal and it can be mixed up in a minute.  

I’ve also enjoyed eating fruit whenever I want- melons, berries, pineapple, apples and bananas.  

On to lunches and suppers, 
Naked okra, hash brown sweet potatoes, fresh fruit and some Tillamook cheese for protein.  

Black eyed peas and rice- 

Zucchini noodles mixed with a few spaghetti noodles topped with homemade sauce and cheese, sautéed spinach and onions and fresh fruit.  
At this meal, my husband skipped the zucchini noodles and only ate spaghetti noodles.  He is not a fan of “zoodles”

Red beans and rice with naked okra 

We’ve had fried rice several times.  This meal had bigger pieces of scramble eggs in the fried rice for protein,  

Below was an impromptu meal with 3 grands.  We had cheese quesadillas with fresh fruit, veggies and yogurt for the children.  I made my quesadilla on a low carb tortilla while the others were on flour tortillas.  

Below  was a meal when 2 grands were here- I set out peanut butter sandwich ingredients but nobody ate them.
The fried rice, made with the eggs stirred into the hot rice to cook them, was a big hit.  

Another meal with 2 grands here was bean and cheese burritos.  I put canned refried beans and grated cheese in tortillas, folded them up and heated them in a skillet with a bit of butter.  We liked them that night.  My son came by the next day and reheated the 2 leftover burritos and he liked them too.  

One day, we were in Oklahoma City and we ate at a Golden Corral, a buffet with lots of choices.  I had a salad topped with sunflower seeds, Mexican beans and cornbread and several vegetables.  My husband had a huge salad, some vegetables and 2 chicken legs.  We both skipped all the desserts.  

Another day,  I was gone all afternoon and hadn’t planned supper.  So I stopped at Walmart and got a bag of Italian salad mix and 2 Digiorno thin crust pizzas, one was spinach and the other pepperoni.  These were small pizzas, maybe 8 or 10 inch.  It cost about $11 total and was cheaper than eating out.  I really liked the spinach pizza but it was different from traditional pizza.  My husband is a big spinach fan but he didn’t like it, he did like his pepperoni just fine.  

For snacks,  we’ve had sugar free pudding, nuts, a few peanuts mixed with sugar free chocolate chips, and fruit.  

Our verdict? After 8 days,  I’ve lost 3 pounds and I feel really good.  
Someone at church commented to my husband that he was looking thinner but I don’t think he has weighed.  He was happy for the compliment. 
This way of eating does take planning but it can be very economical.  
We plan to stay with it and see how it goes.  

I do have a warning if you’re thinking about looking into this way of eating. 
Vegans use no animal products at all and some of them are such purists and activists,  they are not very “nice” or subtle.  You might come across some disturbing or very rude things looking for vegetarian info.  

I’ll post some recipes we like later if anyone seems interested.  

However you choose to feed yourself and your family, happy cooking to you ❤️

CVS deals - last week of August

I almost didn’t go to CVS yesterday but after looking at what a few shopping hauls from other couponers on their social media accounts, I put together the deals I wanted and headed to CVS.
I used a few coupons from the 8/26 and 8/19 Sunday papers along with coupons from the CVS red scanning box and some extracarebucks I earned last week. 

My low out of pocket total really surprised me and impressed the store manager whose rang up my order.  
I spent $4.10, saving 95%, and got back $21 extracarebucks for next week.  I should also get $3 in beauty bucks when they credit in a few days.  

❤️ happy shopping everyone 🛒 

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Summer shopping deals

Good morning, 
The week just flew by here and I don’t have many shopping deals to share but here are my best ones, and really my only ones because I just don’t shop much.  

At CVS- with sales and CVS coupons and extracarebucks and manufacturer coupons,  
all this came to about $23 and I got CVS bucks back for the next week.  

At Dollar General,  all of this was $11, using nothing but their digital coupons.  

My daughter has a side business where she decorates and sells these beautiful Yeti-type tumblers.  
She uses permanent inks and glitters and a rotisserie type turner and the tumbler has to rotate and cure for 24 hours.  I’m not really sure of the details but she is selling them faster than she makes them.  

So when I was in Walmart and saw these TAL tumblers,  which I knew were excellent quality, on clearance for $2, I texted her about them and she wanted some.  

I kept the short tumblers and some of the wine tumblers for my grands to use here.  They have about all graduated from sippy cups and  these insulated cups are so nice.  

I apologize that all of these sales are in the past and no longer available but I do want to encourage you to look online and find out the best sales at the local stores you can shop at. 
CVS shopping takes a lot of planning. 
Dollar General is easy,  you just need a digital account with them. 
And if you shop at Walmart, find out where their clearance aisle is and check it whenever you go there.  

Happy shopping everyone ❤️

My next post will be about what we’ve been eating and how we are doing it differently than ever before and really liking it.  

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

On to a few home spruce ups.......

I’ll show the shopping deals soon but now, I want to show a sewing job I just finished today. 

We bought a 6 foot long foldable bench at Aldi earlier this summer and it’s very practical for the our grands to sit on but it sure wasn’t pretty.  
I decided to try sewing a slipcover/dust-ruffle to cover it.  
I didn’t find much help on Pinterest so I just jumped in anyway. 
I ordered 5 yards of black and white buffalo check fabric on EBay.  It was described as tablecloth fabric and I was very happy with it when it arrived.  
It’s polyester so it doesn’t wrinkle and should be sturdy.  

Below is the bench without a cover. 

I just measured the bench and cut a piece for the top, then cut 2 long pieces for the sides and pinned them on, and 2 shorter pieces for the ends.  
Then I just sewed it all together and finished the seams so it will hold up to laundering.  

I don’t think Ducky likes it but that’s OK.  He won’t be sitting on it.  
I also added ties on the inside to each corner and middle of the cover are tied to the legs.  
The table runner is just the scrap of leftover but I do plan to hem it for a proper runner. 
I like the black and white checks so much, I may order more and sew up a new curtain for the window by the front door. What do you think? 

In the kitchen,  I cleaned out every cabinet and tried to clear as much surface as I could.  

The biggest change is the upright freezer was moved to the garage and our fridge moved back to the built in spot it was supposed to be in.  

The coffee bar moved into the breakfast nook.  

The kitchen seems a lot less crowded to me now.  

It’s hard to photograph and I didn’t take before photos but I spent 2 days cleaning out and organizing our pantry.  
Below is the view top to bottom.  

Above is the top half of the pantry and below is the bottom half.  
My favorite change is I switched out plastic storage baskets for Longaberger baskets.  I already owned several Longabergers and then I bought a bunch more  of them at a bargain yard sale in June.  

The crocks hold potatoes and onions. 
The plastic tubs hold things bought in bulk and things like extra bags of flour, rice, etc; 

These changes have made cooking much easier too as I know exactly what we have on hand and where everything is.  
I’ve got more sprucing up in other rooms to do and I’ll post progress when I get to it.  

Monday, August 13, 2018

Let’s start with food..........

Good morning everyone
I just looked at the possible blog photos I’ve taken recently and they seem to be all related to food, bargain shopping and home sprucing up. 
So I’ll post the food highlights today and move on to the others later this week.  
That way each post won’t be as long a book 😃

We really like okra and in the south, it’s usually battered or coated with cornmeal and fried in lots of oil.  It’s delicious that way but not healthy. 
I recently read to just cook okra plain and we like it so much this way. 
I’ve been buying frozen sliced okra at Walmart. 
To cook, I heat up a nonstick skillet with just a teaspoon of olive oil.  Then I add a single layer of frozen okra and cook it on medium high, flipping it as need to get both cut sides nice and brown.  Add salt and pepper as desired and some diced onions toward the end of the cooking so they don’t burn.  
It’s isn’t slimy and is just so good! 
If you try this,  remember the single layer is important.  If you try to cook a big batch for a group, in 1 pan, like I did 😱 You Will End Up With Okra Mush.  

Naked Fried Okra is my new favorite side dish and I’ve been cooking it at least twice a week this summer.  

I usually buy our weekly produce at Aldi.  I’m thankful Aldi is close by and ours is very nice with a quick turnover on everything.
This week’s produce is not a rainbow but seems to be all red and green.
The tiny tomatoes are not from Aldi but from our little backyard garden.

I offered to help my daughter out by making freezer sandwiches for her 2 children that are starting school soon and like to take homemade lunches.  
Below are all the ingredients set out before I started assembling.

I shopped at Walmart for these ingredients and found French bread for .32 a loaf. 
When we have big dinners,  everyone likes bread.  So I got 4 loaves. 

I sliced them all lengthwise and spread them with softened butter.  
I used 2 sticks for the 4 loaves.

Then I sliced each loaf about every inch or so.

Then I wrapped each loaf in foil and put them in the freezer.  
When we need bread for a meal, these will either get heated in the oven or outside on the grill depending on what meal we have.

I’m not picky about many brands but I do prefer the Reynolds foil in the Heavy Duty for wrapping food.  

For sandwiches,  I made ham and cheese on both tortillas and soft white bread.  
No condiments were used as the online advice says the condiments make the sandwiches soggy and these 2 grands aren’t crazy about condiments anyway.

I also made peanut butter and jelly on seed bread, the Walmart variety that is so much like Killer Dave bread, but half the price. 
I made 2 PBJ on tortillas but I don’t recommend them as I think they will be very messy as the fillings seem to just  squeeze out when I rolled them up.  

And everything was put in zipper bags and into the freezer, ready for lunchboxes when school starts for them this Thursday.  

I hope you all are having a great August 
I plan to post tomorrow some shopping deals.