Wednesday, April 30, 2008
I need some prayer. If you are a believer and want to just throw me on your prayer list I would appreciate it. I had a really rough night last night with very bad dreams and feelings I haven't had in a very very long time. I honestly believe it was a spiritual attack. My sleep has always been a very weak and attack prone place, so it isn't very surprising that it happened, but it was one of the worst I have had in a long time. I have no clue what caused this attack and I am not even sure what area of weakness they were hitting, but it is a deep down guttural unnatural sensation and one I do not like at all.
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Needless to say, I am very happy. I forgot that I had originally punched my weight into the tracker the morning after I came back from the doctor. So, according to it, I have lost 7.6 pounds. Yay Molly.
I have been doing pretty good on my points. There have been a couple of days of struggling, and going over my 31 max points, but I have accumulated about 18 extra points this week. That has allowed me to go over by 10 total this week. I haven't added today's extra points into that, but I ended this week with more extra points than I used. Not to bad for my first week back.
I have also found some fun recipes that are very low in point, very healthy, and very easy on our food budget. We had homemade rice and bean burritos tonight. Oh my they were yummy, and I also got 2 full burritos with sour cream for a total of 5 points - oh yeah!!!
I am actually enjoying my walking as my exercise. Three to four days a week for work I have to walk across campus to the hospital to take samples and then wait 45 minutes to get the results. During this time I speed walk around a slightly deserted floor in the ARB. I know this one secretary thinks I am crazy with my Zune blaring and me walking in circles, but soon she will be seeing less and less of me go by her door. I am actually really thankful for this chance my job is giving me to work out on the clock.
Friday, April 25, 2008
Yesterday I got my check from Cashcrate.com yesterday. It was only $16, but wow! I had just filled out a couple of their free offers (I made a spam email box for this purpose) and the daily surveys. It was fairly easy and I did it while I had down time. So it didn't take up any valuable time. I would really recommend them if you are looking for a fairly easy way to make some pocket money. In my case this money is going into a savings account to pay for some trips that are up coming in mine and AJ's life. Cashcrate pays out once a month, so as long as you make $15 a month they will send you a check. They also have a nifty referral program. Anyone who signs up under me I get paid an extra 25% of what they make (they don't take it from the person, but it is just an over and above type thing). Then anyone who signs up under that person, I get 10% of that (and their original signer gets the initial 25%). Pretty nifty.
I also got my $40 from RevolutionMoneyExchange yesterday. They are still doing their promotion of get $25 for signing up and I get $10. So if you are interested in it, click the button on my side bar. I would appreciate it if you do it, and well you get money out of it.
I have also been getting emails from MyPoints and InboxDollars. MyPoints gives you points that you redeem for gift crads. InboxDollars pays you cash when you get up to $30. Both of them will send you emails that you click on and it credits to you account. I like both of these because they are easy to do, especially if you create an email account just for them. It is nice, I check it about twice a day and click through the emails and I get points. If you are interested in either of these things let me know and I can send you a referral link.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
I miss my AJ. I haven't seen him since Saturday (well that is even questionable if you count all the running around I had to do and all the other activities we had going on).
He has been staying up very late to work on either homework or his senior project. Which means that he has been coming to bed about the time I have to get up to go to work. It is sad when I get up to go potty in the middle of the night and he is still working away. I miss my snuggle partner.
Also, his group has been meeting a lot lately to get everything done for their project that is due tomorrow... that means that for the last 2 day I have been told he would get home at 5pm... yeah right. Last night he got home at 9ish, and tonight isn't looking any better.
The real downfall of this is my eating. Being depressed or unhappy makes me eat more randomly. I am still within my points for the last 2 days, but barely. Yesterday I stayed within them because of the exercise, today is about the same, but not there yet.
YAY HE IS HOME! I AM GOING TO GO SNUGGLE AND FEED MY HUBBY!!!!
Monday, April 21, 2008
Breakfast - oatmeal (3) and yogurt (2)
Snack - apple (1)
Lunch - Lean Cuisine pepperoni pizza (7) and WW Popsicle (1) and tea (1)
Snack - 1/2 zone bar (2)
Supper - sea scallops (double portion), mashed sweet potatoes, green beans (8) and dessert (3)
Tuesday (21) -
Breakfast - oatmeal (3) and yogurt (2)
Snack - applesauce (1)
Lunch - Lean Cuisine frozen meal (6) and green beans (0)
Snack - yogurt (2)
Supper - Speedy Shepard's pie (7)
Breakfast - oatmeal (3) and yogurt (2)
Snack - apple (1)
Lunch - Speedy Shepard's pie (7)
Snack - 1/2 zone bar (2)
Supper - Spaghetti with meat sauce (10) and green beans (0)
Breakfast - WW chocolate muffin (3) yogurt (2)
Snack - banana (2)
Lunch - Lean Cuisine frozen meal (6)
Snack - applesauce (1)
Supper - stromboli (5)
Friday (31) -
Breakfast - oatmeal (3) and yogurt (2)
Snack - banana (2)
Lunch - Spaghetti with meat sauce (7)
Snack - carrots (1)
Supper - pork roast, stuffing, and sweet potatoes (15)
Saturday () -
Breakfast - pancakes (6)
Snack - banana (2)
Snack - carrots
Supper - curried lentils and potatoes over rice(I still need to figure points on this) and samasos (I still need to figure points on this)
Curried Lentils and Potatoes
- 2 tablespoons butter or vegetable oil
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup dry lentils
- 1 large onion, coarsely chopped; about 3/4-cup
- 2 to 3 teaspoons curry powder
- 15 ounce can no-salt-added tomatoes
- 4 cups peeled & coarsely chopped potatoes
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon honey
Place them in a large pot.
Bring the lentils to a boil over high heat.
Reduce heat to low simmer gently.
Simmer for 20 minutes.
Peel and chop your onion and potatoes.
Set the potatoes aside.
Heat the butter or oil in a 10-inch skillet.
Add the onion and curry powder.
Fry over medium-heat until the onions are tender and the spices smell good.
Frying the onions and curry spices bring out their full flavor so please don't omit this step.
Set the pot aside until the lentils finish cooking.
Scrape the onions and curry powder into the pot of lentils.
Add the remaining ingredients too.
Stir the mixture until everything is evenly combined.
Simmer, uncovered for 15 to 20 more minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
Serve in deep bowls with hot buttered whole wheat flat bread and cooked rice.
Makes 4 large servings.Samosas (borrowed from Real Simple)
1tablespoon olive oil
1medium onion, chopped Kosher salt and pepper 1/2teaspoons curry powder
2cups (about 16 ounces) refrigerated mashed potatoes
110-ounce package frozen peas, thawed
1jar mango chutney (optional)
Heat oven to 375° F.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and golden brown, about 8 minutes. Add 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and the curry powder and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in the potatoes and peas.
Unroll the piecrusts and cut each into 6 triangles. Place a heaping tablespoon of the potato mixture in the center of each piece. Gather the corners of the dough and pinch to form a point. Pinch the seams to seal. Transfer to a baking sheet.
Bake the samosas until golden, about 25 minutes. Serve with the mango chutney, if desired.
Yield: Makes 12
NUTRITION PER SERVING
CALORIES 216(50% from fat); FAT 12g (sat 4g); SUGAR 2g; PROTEIN 3g; CHOLESTEROL 7mg; SODIUM 518mg; FIBER 3g; CARBOHYDRATE 26g
Meal Plan Monday is hosted by: Organizing Junkie
I got to looking at what I had accomplished in the past. I lost about 40lbs in 30 weeks. It wasn't a rapid weight loss, but it was really healthy and very controlled. I never got down to the weight that they said I should be of about 145, but honestly I don't think my body can get to that weight again. I did get down to about 180, and honestly I looked great. I was wearing a men's size 34 pants... considering I have child bearing hips from here to eternity, I was majorly happy. Want to know something sad? AJ is now wearing some of the size 32 pants that I had bought with the hope of getting into them (they are a little to big for him, but with a belt they are fine).
So my goal is to get back down to 170-185 (yes it is a huge range, but one I am comfortable setting now and we will see how it goes when I get close to it). I am not officially joining back up because it just isn't in my budget, but since I have everything that I used in the past I think I can do it at home. The only thing that we have to get for this is happy stickers to put on my weight chart. Stickers make me do things I am not normally crazy about. I swear I am not four years old anymore, I just act it.
I am really proud of myself. I "unofficially" started yesterday. Unofficially because I wanted to get started before I went grocery shopping. I did really well with my points until I went to Bible study... there was some very very yummy chocolate derby pie. I only had a little piece, and it was worth it.
I officially started today. So far so good. I walked to earn an extra 3 points (45 minutes total hard walking - all total walking today I walked 6.91 miles). I have a total of 31 points to eat today because I am doing the point cycling. Where one day you eat your minimum points and then the next you eat your maximum. It is supposed to keep your body guessing how much it is going to get and help prevent plateaus. I don't know how true that is for me, but I am willing to try it. So tomorrow I am supposed to eat 26.
Extra points are kinda fun. You get to bank them, or use them if you need to. So say I was to eat 34 points today after all... no harm done because I had 3 extra points from exercise. They only hard thing is that if you exercise below your minimum points you have to eat back up to them. Your body has to have a certain amount to keep going or else your body thinks you are starving and then no weight loss, and I really don't want that.
My goal is to kinda keep a posted record on here of how I am doing so that if it looks like I am falling off the bandwagon people can yell at me and get me back on track.
Friday, April 18, 2008
But on a slightly happier note she gave me two prescriptions for new allergy medicines. The downer note is that they are both tier 2 drugs on my insurance which means they both cost $25 each month. That is a big chunk of our budget, so I was considering only filling one and just not using the other. Well, I did fill one because I had a fill a new prescription at CVS get a $25 gift card... so in some ways it negates the cost of the medicine. Then I got to looking in the sample of the other medicine the doctor gave me - IT HAD A COUPON IN IT! The coupon is for $20 back for filling a prescription. SWEET!!! Which means that I will fill this one as soon as I get another coupon for a free gift card from somewhere. Add that on top of the $20 rebate coupon, and I am getting a good deal out of it.
Well that got me thinking...I wonder if any of my other medicines have possible coupons. I went on the Merck website which is the maker of Singulair has a rebate program that is odd, but good. $10 off the first two prescriptions and $20 of the third, so I called them and requested that they send me the packet. If it will help my allergies and get it for less than it is supposed to cost that would be great.
I also went and checked out the site for Nasacort, they have a program you can enroll in and they will email you rebates for up to $20 a month for filling the prescription. If they email it to me once a month I will gladly refill this until I figure out if it is working.
YAY for coupons and rebates!!!
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
I would also like to thank the two people who signed up and got me an extra $20. You are great! That extra little bit helps our budget a lot!
For anyone else who would like to take advantage of this deal, please click the link to your right. It will get you $25 and me $10.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
It was fun spending time with Jose and Adrienne. We found out that we have a lot in common and that we are both really nerdy couples. I think we are going to try to invite them over for a Star Wars marathon sometime soon.
Unfortunately, the Mythbusters weren't allowed to blow anything us on campus. We were sad, but we did learn some fun facts - that San Diego won't let people make projectile weapons unless it is for research purposes and then it must be held by a law enforcement officers.. so they just invite the police out to be a part of it, the same thing goes for explosions and the fire department. They have also been consulted by NASA and a couple other agencies. They also said that they would keep doing this until they die, because it is more ingrained into their personality to try to tinker with things and figure them out. They had some great one line comebacks to the moderator... I wish I could remember some of the better ones (or any of them at all).
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Meet and Greet Mondays are hosted by : The Natural Mommy
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Friday, April 11, 2008
So I am encouraging anyone else who wants to take advantage of this nifty deal to click the button on my sidebar. You have to sign up before April 15th. You can either have them mail you the check or you can link your checking account (which is what I did) and then have it transfered electronically. *again major happy dance*
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
I love my Brita!!! We got a big one for a wedding present, and I use it all the time. I actually get grumpy when it is either empty or not enough water for a full cold glass. I have been having a hard time remembering to bring water to work. I need water to drink at work because the clean room is the most dehydrating and draining place I have ever been. Well, happy happy day... Lowe's had small Brita pitchers on sale for $7.97, and I found a coupon for $5 off from the manufacturer. Brita is trying to get people to use less plastic bottles so their site has the coupons if you promise to try to reduce your bottled water buy. Well, long story not so short.... AJ and I each got a pitcher to take to work. With the nifty coupons we got them for $2.97 each. What a deal and I am loving having mine at my desk. I am drinking so much water - YAY!
Works For Me Wednesday is hosted by Rocks in My Dryer.
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
On the second part of our honeymoon at Disney. Can you tell I am married to a nerd?
He is watching me "fly" a kite. He looks really confused by it.
After kite flying in St. Augustine. He seems happy with his beer. Again notice the nerd shirt.
Meet and Greet Mondays are Hosted by The Natural Mommy.
The cool part is that for every person you refer you also make $10. So if you get one person to sign up you get $35 not to shabby. I think I am going to try to get AJ to do it too. So if you want to be really nice to me, use the button above to sign up and also give me $10. Oh, and you have to sign up before April 15th to get the bonus $25, so hurry if you want it.
I will warn you that you have to give them your social, but it is because they are an actual bank. They are also FDIC insured which is spiffy too. Some how I think for me this will be about like my paypal account... I use it when I need it and most of the time forget that I have it. I did take advantage of the paypal offer of free money when they did theirs too, so clearly I just like getting free money.
Read more about it here and here.
Monday, April 7, 2008
Store 1 - CVS
Excedrin (24 count) - $1.99 each * 5 = 9.95
Covergirl TrueBlend foundation - $9.29 each *2 = $18.58
Excedrin $2/1 *5 = $10
Covergirl $2/1 = $2
Covergirl B1G1 = $9.29
EBC $5 = $5
OOP = $2.24
EBCs Generated = $17
Store 2 - Lowes
Brita Water Pitcher $7.97 *2 = 15.94
Brita Man. coupon $5 *2 = $10
OOP = $6.32
Store 3 - Bath and Body Works
Body Massager $4
Body Lotion $10.50
Store coupon by anything and get an item up to $11 value = $10.50
OOP = $4.26
So all in all a good night of shopping. Just add that to my great grocery shopping from this weekend ($29 at Publix and $25 stocking up at Super Wal-Mart). I know I am not sticking to any real budget very well at this point, but I feel like I am doing better at getting what we need and some of what we want at better prices and freeing up some money to be able to put into savings and try to get my credit card all paid off in the next month.
Meal Plan Monday is hosted by : Organizing Junkie
Monday - Salmon Patties, Rice, and Corn
1 can pink salmon (skinless and boneless)
1/2 cup milk
1 cup breadcrumbs (or enough that the mixture comes together and isn't to wet)
salt and pepper to tase
1tbsp cooking oil
Mix all ingredients together except oil. Heat the oil in frying pan. Make mixtures into patties and place into hot oil. Cook until golden brown on each side.
Salmon patty sauce
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup mayo
dill (to taste)
Combine all together. Serve as dipping sauce on patties. Very yum.
Tuesday - Chicken Fried Steak (new recipe in Wycliffe cookbook), Potato Au Gratin, Peas, and Carrots
Wednesday - Black Beans and Chicken over Rice
Thursday - Perogie Casserole (new recipe edited from here)
- Lasagna Noodles (9)
- Mashed Potatoes (2 cups)
- Shredded Cheddar Cheese (2 cups)
- Onion chopped (1/2 large)
- Sour Cream
- Butter or margarine - 1 stick
- Cook Lasagna Noodles
- Cook mashed potatoes
- Sautee onion in a small amount of butter, grind up really fine.
- Melt remaining butter
- Layer 3 lasagna noodles in bottom of 9x13 dish
- Place all of mashed potato mixture on top, pour half of the butter , sprinkle half of the cheese, and onion.
- 3 more noodles layered
- Make a layer out of sour cream
- Layer 3 more noodles, cheddar cheese and remaining onion
- Finish by pouring remaining butter over top of dish
- Bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until bubbling hot
- Serve warm topped with sour cream, salt and pepper
Saturday - CORN (Clean Out Refrigerator Night)
Sunday - Pork Roast, Stuffing, Applesauce, Green Beans CROCKPOT NIGHT!
Well I just got news that AJ qualifies for the finals. I think that means he races against the top 30 people from 2 try out dates, then the fastest 5 get to run against the UF football player at the Spring Exhibition game. Want to know the cooler parts? AJ's mom is coming up for the game, and ESPN is going to be covering the game on GAMEDAY (it is the first time they have ever done that). Wouldn't it be awesome if AJ got to run with his mom there and maybe be on gameday?
(I realize this picture isn't of him running. I have to wait until Thursday to get those, but I thought this might show how fast he is just to get that kind of height on a jump.)
So since we couldn't make waffles we went to IHOP. They have a fun promotion going on right now for "Horton Hears A Who". It is a fun meal. They have Sprite with colored Jello in it to make a Beezlenut Splash. Very fun! AJ really likes them, me... not so much. I just don't like chunkies in my drinks. But I will keep it in mind for when we have kids and they want something fun.
So we head to Orlando.
Saturday, AJ packs up to go to his LAN party and I head out shopping with his dad. We went lots of places and didn't buy anything... only because we had no cash at the cash only place, and the store we went to didn't have what we wanted. Oh well. So afterwards I pack up and try to head to the parks before the storm breaks. NO LUCK!
I get to that side of town and the heavens open up! So I get a magazine at WalMart and wait until it passes. And wait, and wait, and wait. Finally I give in and head to do shopping. YAY no rain. So I head to SeaWorld. I get there, blue skies. I walk in, light drips. I get to the stingrays, torrential downpour.
Well, this went on for about 45 minutes. The bad part was I had to go potty... which was right across the walk way. I held out until it at least lightened up some. I did get some fun pictures and video though. Mainly of the storm and the stingrays. The stingrays are really cool, and you can feed them. It feels like a vacuum cleaner on the back of your hand.
So I finally gave up and head out. I only got my feet soaked (YAY Harry Potter umbrella). Then I headed to Downtown Disney. Eh. It was to wet to be fun. So I left. I got lost. for 2.5 hours. At least I found the back parking lot for Magic Kingdom cast members. Getting lost got me really unnerved. It has been a while since that happened, and I was ready to go home. But I had promised I would go say hi to AJ a the lan party. I got lost again. I found him, and then went home. And went to bed.
Sunday we got up and came back to Gainesville and I worked all day. Afterwards I did our grocery shopping for the perishable and sale stuff at Publix. Side note: After coupons and sales I spent $29.67 on groceries. YAY ME!!!
So I finally get home and put our poor poor banana bread back into the oven. It cooked and cooked and cooked. It never cooked all the way through. It is still kinda gummy, but yummy enough to eat. I wish I had taken pictures of it before I started cutting on it. It shrunk up and looks more like a brick than a loaf of bread. Hmmm... note to self... don't let the power go off while baking banana bread.
Friday, April 4, 2008
The garden is really cool. It is climate controlled area that looks like a giant netted room. It has butterflies and some birds in it, with lots of awesome flowers. There is also a waterfall that flows into a pond that has turtles and coy. Needless to say I think the pictures will do a better job showing it than I can describe.
The other fun thing we did last night was I made Swedish Meatballs. The other day I was watching my FAVORITIST IN THE WORLD COOK - Alton Brown
He was making meatballs. I decided that I had never really tried making them, other than for the inserts into nano-burgers for my bentos. So I wanted to try adding them to our meal plan at some point. Well, last night I was supposed to make chicken fried steak... I didn't think I had the bread crumbs. Improvise time.... so it was on to swedish meatballs. It was fun, messy but fun. They came out really well. The only complaint that either AJ or I had was that the sauce didn't make enough sauce. That is a reasonable thing to fix.
I actually didn't use Alton's recipe because I was lazy and didn't want to look for it on the foodnetwork site, and I just googled swedish meatballs. Here is the recipe I found:
Meat: (the main ingredient)
2 pounds ground lean beef
Filler: (to give the meatballs the right consistency)
1 cup milk
1 cup torn bread (I soaked the bread in the milk to make it mushy)
Salt and Pepper:
Salt to taste (1 1/2 teaspoons suggested)
Pepper to taste (white or black pepper - 1/2 teaspoon suggested)
1/4 teaspoon allspice
Pan-fried: Heat a skillet with 2-3 tablespooons of cooking oil to medium-high heat. Fill the skillet about half full with the meatballs, and fry them for about 10 minutes. Shake the skillet gently during cooking to keep the meatballs turning and to cook them evenly, about 10-15 minutes depending on size. You may need a spatula to encourage some of the more stubborn meatballs to turn over properly. As soon as meatballs are browned, take them out of the pan, let them cool and drain a bit, and keep them warm (try using an oven-proof dish in a barely-warm oven) until ready to add sauce and serve.
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cup half and half or cream
1/2 cup water or chicken broth (may be made from bouillon)
Fresh dill leaves or parsley leaves (optional)
Add the flour to the butter in a saucepan, mix thoroughly, turn on heat to low heat. Discard the fat from the cooking pan, then rinse the pan in the water or broth to loosen the bits of meat from the pan. Add the water or broth to the butter/flour base in the saucepan and mix thoroughly. (Tip: at this point, mixing the flour/fat mixture and the broth mixture in the blender removes all lumps thoroughly.) Turn up the heat and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low, and add the half and half or cream slowly. Simmer until a good consistency. Add dill or parsley if desired. Stir the meatballs into the sauce until heated through. Transfer to the serving dish and serve immediately.
I served them over egg noodles. YUM! I think this is getting added to our routine meal plan. It also made enough that I can freeze some and that would make this even easier.
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Last night AJ and I went to a baseball game. I have to admit, I am still learning about the sport and have only been to four games - two Gator games and two Braves games.
It was fun! Last night the Gators were playing the team from University of North Florida. It was the first game of the season, the next two will be next week after the Gators travel to Tenn. this weekend.
We had tried to go to the game on Sunday, but there were all kinds of things preventing that. So instead of getting to sit in the stadium we sat in the car next to the stadium and listened to the game on Sunday. It was nice though, if not odd. AJ found one of the balls that was hit over the fence and he gave it to a dad for his little boy. The player in the picture is the one who hit it over the fence. On Sunday one of the Gator players got hurt too, he got hit in the foot by the ball and went down like a sack of potatoes.
Well, last night we randomly choose our seats and settled in for a fun night of baseball. There were these two ladies sitting behind us and they were having a blast... laughing and giggling and getting all into the game. So I being curious by nature wanted to get a glimpse at them. They were two mom looking ladies, and they were wearing player pins (UF makes buttons for the parents/ families of the sports teams with the players last name and number on it). That made things make a lot more sense. So we kinda talked to them and they kept getting calls asking them to call people back when their player got up to bat. It turns out that the player that got hurt on Sunday was the son of the mom behind us. It was neat hearing all about the experience and how they has rushed him to get x-rays and all. I think it was also neat seeing that a mom doesn't stop being a mom even when their baby is grown and playing college sports. Last night the player also got hit in the butt by the ball, even at that this mom was ready to go jump down on the field and strangle the pitcher. Southern mommas are great!
Last night was amazing. The clouds were really cool. I was happy to get to spend a good chunk of the night just hanging out with my hubby and watching some baseball.
I am not sure what the outcome of the game, because we had to leave at the top of the seventh. It was getting late and I was getting tired. I am convinced that pitcher was trying to keep me up all night... it was taking 30 minutes per inning. He also had some weird thing about throwing at least three times to knock someone off base. Oh well, we all have our quirks.
Some how this meal tends to be a collection of whatever is floating around the apartment when I decide to make it, so it almost always varies. It also doesn't help that I am not the biggest fan of following recipes and/ or measuring cups. I kind of have an eclectic view on cooking and that it is a science as well as an art form. Luckily I am blessed with a husband who for the most part will eat almost anything and lets me play in the kitchen.
The recipe swap is hosted by The Natural Mommy
Guinness Beef Stew
- 1lb cut up beef (the only thing I think that wouldn't work is hamburger), so the cheapest cut of beef should work well.
- carrots -diced how you like them.
- potatoes - diced how you like them.
- 1/2 onion - chopped into large sections
- 1 bottle of Guinness
- 1 can beef broth (small)
- 2 tbs tomato puree, dissolved in 4 tbs water
- pinch of pepper
- 1tsp thyme
- 1tsp oregano
- 1/4 flour
- 2 tbs oil
Season the flour with ground pepper.
Toss the meat in the mixture.
Heat the remaining oil in a wide frying pan over a high heat.
Brown the meat on all sides.
Add the onions and tomato puree to the pan, cover and cook gently for about 5 minutes.
Transfer the contents of the pan to a crockpot. P
our some of the Guinness into the frying pan.
Bring to a boil and stir to dissolve the caramelized meat juices on the pan (because these are the yummy bits).
Pour onto the meat with the remaining Guinness and beef broth.
Add the carrots, oregano, and the thyme.
Cook in crockpot for 4-6 hour on high, or overnight on low. Basically I follow the rule, when it smells to yummy to resist it is done.
If it isn't thick enough you can add a little bit of cornstarch at the end, but that is a personal preference.
Also I occasionally make soda bread with this, because it is easy and quick.
- 2 cups of all purpose flour.
- 1/2 Teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 Teaspoon salt
- 8 oz of sour milk
Preheat the oven to 425 F. degrees.
In a large bowl combine all the dry ingredients.
Add the sour milk to form a sticky dough.
Place on floured surface and lightly knead (too much allows the gas to escape).
Shape into a round flat shape and place onto a cookie sheet and cut a cross in the top of the dough.
Bake for 30 minutes.
The bottom of the bread will have a hollow sound when tapped so show it is done.
Cover the bread in a tea towel and lightly sprinkle water on the cloth to keep the bread moist.Ok, just thinking about all this makes me hungry... I wonder what is on our meal plan for tonight...
Wednesday, April 2, 2008
I love my silicone bakeware. AJ and I had put it on our wedding registry, but didn't get it. So when Target sent us our competition coupon I decided I really wanted to get this (and our camping tent, but that is another story).
The kit I got has everything shown to the left. The two items that I am so in love with are the cookie sheet liner and the muffin baking pan. We use the cookie sheet liner at almost every dinner meal in our house. Yay for tater tots not sticking to the cookie sheet anymore. Making biscuits is a lot nicer now too. Having the nifty muffin pan means I have been baking muffins about once a week now.
I love the fact that everything comes off or out of the pans. I even made meatloaf one night in the loaf pan. I was so happy when the whole thing just popped right out (I don't trust my big brothers not to cut through the silicone had I left it in there). I was also amazed at how nicely the meatloaf cleaned up out of the pan. Normally it takes forever and day with lots of elbow grease to clean out the sticky meatloaf saucy topping, but this just wiped out with hot water and a sponge (and soap of course). Before these I had switch to disposable loaf pans for meatloaf, and now I wouldn't go back.
The other great thing about this bakeware is that it is completely dishwasher safe. I have washed it on the top and bottom racks and they come out clean. The baking sheet liner folds in half and fits on the bottom rack with the plates, sweet!
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Today was my first true net gain today at CVS. *Jumping for joy!* We needed milk and vinegar, so I had to figure out some way to get them and to try to make a real gain today. I had $17.99 in EBCs to work with, which I will admit was a good start, but I hadn't figured out how to really work them without loosing more than I made.
The break down:
$8.94 - Essence of Beauty gift bags (6) (EBCs - $10)
$3.99 - CVS Rapid Release "tylenol" (1) (EBCs- $3.99)
$0.09 - Easter Chocolate (1)
$13.02 - Total
-$3.00 - CVS coupon $3/10
$10.02 - Total
-$10.00 - EBC
$0.02 - OOP
EBCs Earned: $13.99
Transaction # 2
$11.97 - CVS Rapid Release "tylenol" (3) (EBCs- $11.97)
$9.98 - Softsoap Spa (2) (EBCs - $9.98)
$1.99 - Heinz White Vinegar (EBCs - $1.00)
$3.69 - TG Lee Milk
$27.63 - Total
-$2.00 - Softsoap Spa coupon (2)
-$3.00 - CVS coupon $3/10
-$4.00 - CVS email coupon $4/20
$18.63 - Total
-$14.97 - EBC
$3.66 - OOP
EBCs Earned: $22.95
EBCs Spent: $24.97
EBCs Earned: $36.94
EBCs "Profit": $11.97
Yes, I realize I am a nerd. I am thinking of scanning in my spreadsheet that I had created to work this out. The sad part isn't the spreadsheet... the sad part is all the calculations on the spreadsheet done in pen. I worked hard on the spreadsheet and then in the car on the way to CVS I figured out another way to make more EBCs. My initial calculations came out to making $21.96, not to bad... but I would have spent $15 and not gotten my milk or vinegar. So all in all, I am proud of myself. Just a side note: AJ thinks I am silly for this, but I think deep down he is proud of me (and not just because I am having to do math for my new crazy hobby).
While at Disney, AJ and I got my parents to ride the new Expidetion Everest. Unfortunatly, we couldn't get them to put the picture onto the photopass cd, so I cheated and snapped this picture. My mom said when we got off the ride that she was thinking "Oh my goodness, oh my goodness, oh my goodness!!!!" This from someone who likes Thunder Mountain. I couldn't tell any difference in the actual ride. The ride was really smooth and I thought all the track changes were awesome. I was surprised how many track changes there are considering how fast they can move people through the line.
I have to agree with my friends that think the Yeti is over-rated. You can barely see him, and he is almost a side note at the end. I will say the projections that they use to set up for the Yet is pretty darn neat.
Needless to say, I thought the ride was pretty cool. AJ and I had ridden the ride earlier that morning and knew where the picture was taken. I was glad we got to ride it twice, but I am not sure I would have wanted to either wait in line again or ride it again, it gave me a slight headache. After this ride we were off to take a safari at Animal Kingdom.
Earlier that morning we had ridden horses over at Fort Wilderness. I will post picutres and such of that later. It was really fun, but this picture just had to have the first fun post of the new blog.
I even found a new picture to go with the title. That makes me really happy. I think it looks awesome!
I have all kinds of things I want to write about: our Disney World adventure, the funniest voicemail I have gotten in a long time, our beach trip and the trying to cook a hamburger incident. I guess I just want to share things and the fun of it all. I am fighting some deep personal issues right now, and I am hoping that to some degree posting about some of the really great things that have been going on and also all the blessings I have in my life will remind me of how great things really are.