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Archive for March, 2007

Bertolli Skillet Meal for 2- A Review

March 29th, 2007 at 01:26 am

Okay I am going to be honest here. I don't cook. I have not cooked more than a meal here and there for over 25 years. Wait I take that back, I did a few of those OAMC things back when the girls were all home that we worked into the menus.

So our local Safeway was remodeled and had a grand reopening sale. We received 3-$10 off $50 purchases.

So one day we go try to find stuff to add up to $50.00 (on sale of course) so we can get our $10.00 off. One thing we bought was Bertolli "Complete Skillet Meal for Two" at 2/$10.00.

So tonight DH is feeling not well so I pull one out, plop it into the skillet on medium and come back in 10 minutes where it is DONE! I selected the Shrimp, Asparagus & Penne combo.

I counted 12 small shrimp, the equivalent of about 2 stalks, okay maybe 3 stalks of asparargus and about 1/8 cup of pieces of red pepper. There were about 1 inch pieces of frozen red stuff that I assume was the creamy tomato basil sauce. I measured it after it was done and it was about 3.5 cups.

It was fairly tasty, but I started adding up how much it would have cost to make it and decided it is time for me to start doing some more of that Once A Month Cooking thing.

It would be easy to put this meal together and freeze yourself.

Freeze a bottle of vodka pasta sauce, in an ice cube tray. Trader Joe's is very good. Cook up a package of penne pasta, chop up some asparagus or broccoli. Open up a jar of roasted red peppers from TJ's or chop up some fresh. Count out 12 little shrimp from a pound of those 20-25 per pound shrimp. Cook the veges and shrimp together. Toss in the drained pasta. Layer in single layer on a cookie sheet and stick in the freezer for 20 minutes. Pack into freezer bag with a couple of cubes of frozen sauce and there you are!

DH arrived home from Las Vegas this morning (hmmm is that why he doesn't feel good) and while he was gone I had a frozen leftover meal of bow tie pasta and a chicken breast left from chicken cacciatore he had made. It was enough for two meals and was delicious.

Anyway Bertolli has definitely got me thinking!

Umm-I can't add-$20.00 challenge!

March 17th, 2007 at 03:46 pm

Okay my last post should have read.

+ 158.22 Amex Rebate
.12 found change by washer/dryer
200.00 in Verizon/Costco rebates.
Total: $358.22

My latest additions:
Found $25.00 in a gift bag that still had a gift it in from a friend from my birthday in December. I think I stuck the money my mother gave me in the same bag. Then I found a quarter under the couch when I went to get my Roomba unstuck. Also DH and I went to the movies yesterday with free coupons that saved $11.50.

Okay and one more.... last week I found a $100.00 (okay a little less) gift certificate from the local Gottschalks's store that was a rebate for what we had charged in 2006. Usually it is a negligible, but we bought a new mattress this year so it was worth using. I found it two days before it expired!

So new total: $ $494.97

$20 Challenge

March 15th, 2007 at 12:26 am

I guess it's time to start or catch up.

My original $20.00 was spent on You Need A Budget budgeting spreadsheet.

This has made me so much more aware of spending, that and reading everyone's blogs.

So I am going to go back over my receipts and find any discounts/coupons/rebates, etc and add to my "account".

I will also add in "found money" and the difference between using "blue money" and the face value.

So today:
I received two $50.00 rebate checks from our new cell phones. We already received two other $50.00 rebates on the same phones. There was a rebate from Costco and a rebate from Verizon.

My husband's cell phone is paid by his business, so basically we added me onto his account and I will pay $25.00 a month.

I also found 12 cents on the floor around the washer this morning.

Oh and yesterday we got our annual rebate from our AMEX that was $158.22.

Woohoo it has been a good month!

add: 178.34

Total: 178.34

Sunday's organizing and thoughts...

March 11th, 2007 at 05:12 pm

My husband is cleaning out the freezer. He did something similar last week in our pantry. Unfortunately he decided to throw out some cans of food that we probably have had since the days of our children believing in Santa!

He decided to place the cans that needed to be used soonest on a top shelf so that when meal planning, we would look to this cans first when deciding what to create for dinner.

He is going to use a similar method in our freezer. We have chicken dated April 2006, which means it is a few months past it's prime freezer life (9 months for chicken from the charts I have seen).

While making scones this morning (from scratch natch) DH brought in some mystery packages that we had properly sealed with our food sealer. One of them I recognize as Turkey soup base.

Now turkey is a great year round by and we usually pick up a few extra during the holidays. I feel very virtuously frugal as we simmer the carcass and then pick it clean. Unfortunately those frozen packages never seem to actually become soup!

DH also found a zip lock bag that had a few of his favorite teryaki marinated then barbecued chicken thighs. He was quite distressed when he realized he missed out on microwaving and enjoying one of his favorite foods.

So our goal is to organize and recognize that in order to be truly frugal, we must take that second step and actually eat our leftovers or second harvests. The first step is to have a set area to put those things, which in our case is the top shelf of our freezer and a top shelf in our pantry.

Happy Sunday!

Let me save you some money...

March 3rd, 2007 at 02:37 am

If you were getting sucked into the Round Table Pizza ads about the Artisan Prosciutto pizza... don't bother. We got a large for $14.99, which was $7.00 off and it was very bland. We rarely buy pizza and wish we hadn't!