Monday, August 30, 2010

Menu Plan Monday Week of August 27

Welcome everyone.  We sure have been busy around here trying to get ready for school in a week and a half.  Most of you have already been there and done that this year.  Our school starts later than I am used too.  This weeks meal plan is going to be easy.  I am also changing my menu to go from Fri-Thurs.  The easier the better in our household since we are going to start putting up all of the pool toys and get ready for fall.  It is getting a little chilly here in the evenings so I am sure we are going to close the pool in a week or two.  Hope you guys have a wonderful week and see you back here soon.

Menu Plan Monday

Friday: subs
Sat:  kids night in parents out, mac and cheese
Sunday: steaks and sweet potatoes
Monday:  chicken and broccoli
Tuesday: garlic bread sammies
Wed: spaghetti with homemade sauce
Thurs: terriyaki chicken and rice

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Quick and Delicious Garlic Bread Subs

Good morning!  This is just such a perfect day!  The weather is wonderful and my family is happy. What more could you ask for?  I hope your day started out just like mine!
I am going through all of my recipes and making my menu plan and grocery list.  I asked my husband what he would like on the menu this week.  Luckily he said my garlic bread subs!  So easy and quick to prepare.  Here is the recipe......

Garlic Bread Subs

1 loaf of garlic bread from freezer or fresh
1 pkg of fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 lg. onion, sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 Tbsp. of butter
1 1b. roast beef from deli counter
6-8 slices of provolone, or your cheese preference

Preheat oven to 400.
Bake bread for about 8 minutes.
Saute mushrooms, garlic and onions in your butter until nice and soft.
Take bread out of oven and on each half press your mixture on top.  This is an open faced sandwich.  Now put your slices of meat and then top with your slices of cheese.  We like roast beef and provolone, but use your families favorites.  Now put it back in the oven until the cheese is melted and everything is nice and toasty.  Slice and enjoy.  Everyone in my family loves this.  For Roman I will just make a little section without the mushrooms.  This last time I used the garlic toasts in the freezer.  It worked good too. 

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Grocery Budgeting

Here I am.  I got lost for a little bit, but I am back.  To tell you the truth the last 4 weeks have been very filled and I have been exhausted.  Hoping to get back to normal here for a while.  Lately I have been doing some cleaning and getting things ready for the start of the school year.  My kids don't go back to school until Sept 8.  Seems like we are all ready to get back in the school year groove.  The kids are missing there friends, who unfortunately go from one parent to the other at odd times.  So hard for them to keep in contact with them. 
We have also decided to start budgeting.   I know that we can do this.  Our money just flies out the door the minute that we get it, or else we spend it on junk.  Do you guys have that problem?  I would just love to know where are dollars are going.  We have decided to really hunker down and pay off some bills.  My main concern is how much I have for groceries.  It is really hard for me as a stay at home mom to not go to the store when I need something.  Fortunately and unfortunately I live about a block from Wegmans.  When I need milk I go to the store and come home with a bunch of other stuff that cost me about $20.  
Now I have a budget.  I need to really try and have all the food and paper goods that I need for 1 week.  Do you guys do a plan for 1 week or 2?  I know that for Menu Plan Monday I post for 1 week but really I write it out for 2 weeks.  I go to the store thinking that I will get most of what I need.  I don't.  I fail miserably.  Some days I (we) am not hungry for what I have on the plan.  I believe that if I started planning for just 1 week instead of the two it would be easier.?.  That way I could tell myself  " I can wait until Sunday for that particular item."   And I am going to also take the cash out of the account and put it in a envelope for groceries.  When I am out, I am OUT!   Think I can do it guys?  Any suggestions on grocery budgeting would be great.  Any great healthy meals would be awesome too!   Have an awesome Tuesday!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Homemade Cake Batter Ice Cream Recipe! YUM!

Let's just start off being honest here.  I have not made much ice cream.  I just always thought it was so much easier buying the containers at the store.  I have never been a huge fan of ice cream and the kind you buy at the grocery store is just not that great.  On the other hand I adore Coldstone Creamery's Ice Cream.  I just love the mud pie mojo.  Yum!  So I decided to start off small and make this cake batter ice cream.  It is creamy and decadent.  You could add all of the yummy stuff after you freeze it to have your own creamery concoction!  I am sure that you know buying your family ice cream at a creamery is going to cost about $5.00 per person.  No guilt here guys! This batch costs roughly around $3.50!  This is a win win scenario here people!  Just go now and make it, hurry up!

Cake Batter Ice Cream in a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker

1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

2 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 3/4 cups whole milk

3/4 - 1 cup of dry cake mix,  I used a yellow cake mix.

WHISK all ingredients in a 2-quart pitcher or large bowl until blended, it still will look chunky at this point. Cover and chill 30 minutes.

POUR milk mixture into freezer container of a 1 -quart electric ice-cream maker, and freeze according to manufacturer's instructions. If you like soft serve than this is for you, otherwise read on....
REMOVE container from ice-cream maker pour in a Tupperware container and place in freezer until firm, about 1 to 1½ hours.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Menu Plan Monday: August 16th

I am back from vacation and we are not feeling up to par yet.  We have all been sick for the last week.  So this will be short and sweet.  Hope you all are having a fun summer. 

Amish Chicken and Steak with Baked Potatoes
Friendship Casserole
Bacon Onion and Tomato Sammies
Chicken Bombay with Rice
Hamburgers with Squash Casserole
Garlic Bread Sammies

My husband is on vacation this week so we are eating mostly cookout foods and summer favs.  I am going to be making ice cream this week with my ice cream maker.  I am trying out cake ice cream.  I will let you know how it goes.  Take care everyone!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Freezing Fresh Corn

I worked on freezing 65 ears of fresh corn last Sat.  I first heard about freezing fresh corn from my sister-in-law Maile.  Her husbands family does this.  It sounded like such a fun and easy way to have great tasting corn in the yucky New York winter months.  I had arranged with a farmer's stand 2 weeks in advance to call me on Fri evening if they had 5 dozen ears left.  She did and I ran over.  I got 5  baker's dozen and they were delicious.  She cuts them every morning for her stand so I knew they were fresh.  It took me at most 1 hr to clean the corn.  1 hr to blanch the corn.  1 hr to cut and bag up the corn.  So at most this project took me 3 hrs.  Here are the basic directions.
1.  Clean the corn.
2.  Blanch the corn for about 5 minutes.  Different blogs or websites tell you diff times.  I felt that this was the right time for me and my corn ;)
3.  Cool.  I immediately placed them on some newspaper to soak up all the hot water and cool.
4.  Cut off the cob.  I used a big bowl and then put a measuring cup upside down in it.  I put the ear on the little cup and cut.  Most of the kernels fell into the big bowl.  I made sure to get the good stuff even some of the milk.
5.  Bag it up.  I put it in freezer bags.  Roughly 5 ears of cut corn in each bag.  I did throw in some diced red and yellow bell peppers into a few bags.
That was it.  I hope you get to try this sometime.  Can't wait to grab a bag when we have lots of snow and are really missing the tastes of summer.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Never Run Out of Gas!

OK folks.  I must admit that I was so close to running out of gas on the highway in the mountains on my way to NC.  You would of thought that I would of learned my lesson.  Oh no, not Kim.  I totally ran out of gas going to the store here in Charlotte today.  Totally ran out!  Here is the story.  We went to dinner and then decided to quickly go into this thrift store that my mother-in-law had heard about.  I had my father-in-law and my kids in the car watching a dvd.  All of a sudden here comes Caitlin and her cousin running in and telling me that I ran out of gas.  I just laughed and said no way.  Ha. Ha.  I went outside and it wouldn't start.  We rolled it to see if tilting it another way would start the car.  My idea guys.  Didn't work.  So Jim and I walked to the gas station.  As I am paying for the gas a sheriff comes in and looks at me all sweaty and knows that I am in trouble.  I ask him if he would give me a ride to my car, he only had room for 1.  So he takes me back to the van.  I put in the gas and it still won't start.  Jim comes up, my father-in-law from walking back from the gas station.  Tries to start it and another older man comes up all gruff and says "What is going on here folks?"  So I tell him and he looks at my 1 gallon gas can and laughs and says "that isn't going to cut it."  He says he will take us to get some more gas.  Jim is kind-of in his own world and doesn't really respond.  I feel weird because the guy grabs my gas can and Jim is doing his mechanic thing.  So I get in the truck WITH HIM............ So I know where the gas station is and he is not going to that one.  He says that he likes the one down another block.  I start to freak out a little.  Grab my purse tight and think how dumb I am.   So we do get to the gas station and I pay for the gas.  Get in the car and he is driving back.  I feel my pocket and realize that I have Kathy's cell phone.  It starts to ring....... It's Jim.  "Where are you?"  " We are on our way back to the parking lot."  He says they got the van started and they are looking for me at the gas station that we didn't go to.  The guys that is helping me is really persistent now and kind of gets gruff  "Where are they?  What gas station?  What? Which one?"  I felt really weird, but we get there.  I tell him "Thanks, and keep my can and the gas."
Needless to say my in-laws and my children were freaking out!  Kathy is all weepy and Jim is all huggy.  My kids are relieved.  I am just so feeling like I am just the biggest "dumb-ass" alive.  I just did something that I would NEVER want my kids to do.  I don't want to say too much on the guy.  I did feel weird.  He was very pushy and very lengthy in his stories.  You just don't ever know.  Was I extremely lucky that I got out of there in 1 piece?  You just never know.  But I do know this.... I sure did learn my lesson!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Caitlin's Amazing Raisin Cinnamon Swirl Bread

I just can't believe it. Really. My husband came home the other day with the cooking ds recipe game thingy. As you can tell I am not into all the lingo or the original names. ;) Caitlin just loved it and was so excited to start using it. We did not have much in the house because I was trying to be good about my meal plan, thus not going to the grocery store and satisfying my cravings. Needless to say we had all of the ingredients for Raisin Cinnamon Swirl Bread so she got to work. I am not kidding this bread was AMAZING. Better than the stuff you buy at the store. She really did it all by herself. Yeast bread mind you. Yeast bread. Ryan and I were just talking the other day how I can make great rolls, but I just can't get the yeast bread thing down. It always comes out cakey and not anything that you would want to toast and slather with butter and jelly. This was absolutely like that. I took a picture and am so proud of her. Thank you Caitlin for your amazing ability to bake bread.

As a side note on this game thingy. I made chocolate chip cookies last night for our trip. I am not a cookie maker. I just never thought I had it in me. I AM A COOKIE MAKER NOW! These were delicious.
I am leaving with the kids for a week or two. Hope you all have a wonderful week. I won't be so religious, I don't think, at posting every day during my trip.  Sometimes you just never know though.
Take care!