monday – menus and more

from-the-kitchen1

I don’t know if I’ve talked myself into liking the menu plan concept or if I’m really okay with it.  I used to consider those who planned their food for a week or more a little bit cuckoo (sorry Sara).

Really, how am I supposed to know what I want on Thursday when it’s only Sunday?  I usually didn’t know what I wanted for dinner by lunchtime on any given day.

But I have to say, it’s working for me.  I kind of like knowing that my meals for the week are using the food purchased and at this point I keep the menu vague enough that I have some time to research a good recipe.  Which of course I won’t follow, but it’s good reference.

Let’s see what we’ll be eating…

Sunday:  tacos

Monday:  pork roast, saffron rice

Tuesday:  chicken strips, corn on the cob

Wednesday:  eggs in spicy tomato sauce (as basic as this one is, I still don’t follow the recipe)

Thursday:  cheeseburger stuffed potatoes (nope, won’t be doing this one exactly either)

Friday:  leftover pork roast somethin’ (i have no idea what this will be, will require research)

Saturday:  tuna pasta (we didn’t have this last week)

I’m looking forward to a lot of these meals.  I’m even looking forward to shopping next week so I can come up with a couple of meals that involve shrimp.  It will be a special “I love you” week for the husband.  Just because.

felix

The more I pay attention the more I have to let go (or save for a good massage).  As I am starting to really track prices, sales and store competition I find the idea of stock piling a little frustrating.  Last week we stocked up on granola bars.  Husband has a favorite big-name brand, as they go on sale somewhat regularly it’s not a big deal.  Last week they were on sale and I had a coupon.  We have (6) boxes in the cupboard (plus one that’s open).  Today I saw them on sale at a different store.  Best price I’ve ever seen them at.  But we already have (6) boxes.  And I need the remaining cupboard space for food the rest of the family eats.  It was actually hard to say no.  But as we were getting close to our budget I made that the focus and forced the cart in the opposite direction.

Our budget was $80, we spent…

Sprouts Farmers Market – $20.36 (savings = $3.49)

Trader Joe’s – $6.35

Vons – $36.28 (coupon + card savings = $25.24)

Walgreens – $15.34 (savings = $14.17)

A grand total of $78.33.  Not much below the budget but that’s not really the point.  We kept to it another week and I’m thrilled.  Don’t I sound thrilled?

I just found out Sprouts takes manufacturer coupons, which I’m very excited about.  (Really, if you only knew how that makes me well up with happiness.)  Their savings total is a little misleading though.  Most everything we bought there was on sale in the weekly flyer but the  only savings listed was for a BOGO box of frozen waffles.

I’ve read many people say the work involved in coupon clipping and such is just not worth the effort when they try to cook from basic ingredients and don’t use packaged foods.  I would have to disagree somewhat.  I have found great savings on things like rice, soap, popcorn.  I’m not going to be saving 80% of my bill but I’m pretty happy when I can save 50% like this week at Vons.  Even with so much spending at a major chain store I still cook using whole foods and not many processed, packaged things.

But sometimes, with a toddler and a great deal, a little convenience can come in handy.  Like those frozen waffles.

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3 Comments to “monday – menus and more”

  1. Can you tell me your tuna pasta recipe? My husband loves tuna and pasta. Sometimes I make tuna casserole with elbow macaroni, cheddar cheese, tuna, and peas, with bread crumbs on top. I used to make a white sauce but lately I use half a can of the dreaded cream of mushroom soup. It’s a real white trash special, but it’s delicious. The last time I started to make it I realized I didn’t have elbow macaroni so I made it with angel hair pasta and he loved it.
    Really ridiculous food. I would love to have a slightly more gourmet version of tuna pasta to fix.

  2. I stinking LOVE my menu plans. I hate making them, but my goodness, they save me so much time and effort.

    Kristen@TheFrugalGirl

  3. Angela, I have been known to make white trash special too. There’s just
    something comforting about it. But I usually reserve that for cooler
    weather. This week I will probably be thinking more along the lines of a
    Nicoise salad but with pasta. Tuna, capers, tomatoes, olives, light olive
    oil. Simple. And I just go with whatever pasta I feel like having at the
    time, short or long.

    Hope you and your husband enjoy!

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