Friday, August 12, 2011

Pantry Challenge: Week 1

Day 1. Wednesday:
Today was my shopping trip. I went about $15 over what I expected, but I had to unexpectedly buy cat food and a new hairbrush (cat food and hairbrushes are expensive, man!), and then I picked up some rice-a-roni, sour cream, cinnamon rolls that were on special, and some eggs along with everything else I had planned on buying.
Total Spent = $41.98
Almost half my budget gone and it's only August 3rd! Ahh! But, i'm not too worried. It's only because I was out of town for almost the entire last two weeks, so our food supply was pretty lacking.
At the check-out, I also received two Catalinas for Poise products. (You know, the pads for pee leakage. Lol.) One is for an entirely FREE Poise product (up to $6.00) and the other is for $2 off a Poise Petite pack (which are on clearance at Smith's for $1.79, making these also FREE!)
I skimped on breakfast this morning because I just could not get out of bed, but I think Brad made himself some toast.
Lunch was egg salad sandwiches.
Dinner we had quesadillas, Mexican style rice-a-roni, with a side salad and lemonade to drink. Then, after putting Katie to bed, Brad and I whipped up some M&M cookies with the M&M's I bought today for $0.13 a bag. They are cooling on wire racks as I type this. Mmm!
So far, so good!

Day 2. Thursday:
Today was a bit of a bust menu planning wise. Because of dentist appointments for both Brad and myself, our meals were a little sporadic. Cereal for breakfast, snacking on M&M cookies throughout the day, egg salad sandwiches for a late lunch early dinner, and then I just ate a cinnamon roll. Haha! I'll have to make chicken pot pies either tomorrow or Saturday. My whole chicken wasn't thawed enough, so it wasn't done in the crock pot until after 8, and by that time I really didn't want to have to make a pie crust and bake that sucker. Oh well. I still did get the chicken cooked up though. From one whole chicken, which was $3.47 on manager's special, I cooked it up, shredded it, put half in the freezer for a future casserole (probably the one for Sunday), 1/4 of the chicken in a ziplock in the fridge for pot pies tomorrow/saturday, and the other 1/4 I put in a ziplock with some barbeque sauce and popped in the freezer. That way, when I take it out to thaw, it willl get nice and marinated, and I can just heat it up and have BBQ chicken sandwiches. Mmm! Were you keeping count? 3 separate meals for only $3.47! (Plus the cost of general things I have on hand to make the meals.) Awesome!
Just a little note: If I break down the cost, the BBQ chicken cost less than a dollar, with my cheap chicken and a bottle of BBQ sauce I got for free with coupon. We will put it on hambuger buns, which I have in the freezer and purchased for $1. Since there are 8 buns in a package,and we would only use 2 of them, it's about $0.25. So we can have BBQ chicken sandwiches for $1.25!!! Yeah! Pair them with Salt and Vinegar chips I got for free with a coupon and some Organic lemonade that was $1.12 with coupon, we've got a full meal for two for less than $3. I love math. Hehe. :)

Day 3. Friday:
I ended up making the Chicken Pot Pies today instead, pushing the pasta and french bread to Sunday, replacing the soup from a can I was going to heat up. Lol! We did still have cereal for breakfast and ice cream for dessert as planned, though. The pot pies actually turned out a little bit dry, sadly, so I am going to tell everyone looking for a pot pie recipe, don't use Rachel Ray's! Oh well. I still thought it was good, although Brad didn't enjoy the over-abundance of peas (my fave). Katie enjoyed them too though, so it's all good. Oh! Brad also took himself an egg salad sandwich to work and the rest of the M&M cookies. Yay for bringing lunch to work to save a few bucks!

Day 4. Saturday:
Both Brad and I had Toaster Strudel for breakfast and I made Katie some oatmeal. I don't think we even ate any lunch. Haha! We actually went over to Brad's sisters house for dinner, where we had homemade versions of Cafe Rio/Costa Vida sweet pork salads. Then, Brad and I actually ended up going to Pizza Pie Cafe at 9 at night. They had a special where you can bring in your receipt from today next time you go in and get a free meal. Going out to eat wasn't really in our budget, but oh well. You know I can't pass up a good deal. Which brings me to my shopping trip for today. . .
I ended up going to Smith's this morning. Yikes! It was Customer Appreciation day, so I went to try and win some free stuff! I also wanted to use those coupons I got for free Poise products. Of course, while I was there I noticed some awesome new stuff on the clearance shelf, (fruit snacks, cat food, organic apple juice, spaghettios), so I had to pick some stuff up. I consider these things food storage/stockpile items however, so I am not including them in my $100 to spend this month. Back to the free stuff they were giving away- They were handing out raffle tickets and doing giveaways every 15 minutes. When I first got into the store I got a raffle ticket, and didn't win. Then after about 12 minutes, I realized that I probably needed to go grab a new raffle ticket since they probably don't keep all of them in the pot for the entire day (no one is going to be in the store for that long.) So I went over to the raffle desk and asked for a new ticket, then the guy told me that since my baby was so cute, he would just let me win. Lol. He took a ticket off for me, then called the other winners over the intercom, along with "my" ticket number. I spun the wheel they had set up and won an apple pie worth $3.99. Woop! Too bad we don't really like pie. I ended up taking it to Jenna's house later so hopefully her family can enjoy it more than we would have.

Day 5. Sunday:
Who was I kidding when I decided to make french toast for breakfast? Haha! I almost never get up early enough to make breakfast on a Sunday. We were 10 minutes late to church as it was, and we didn't even have time to eat any kind of breakfast! Oh well. After church, we snacked on some things, but mostly cleaned the house because my visiting teachers (women from church who visit each other once a month to make sure everyone is doing ok and to help with anything. I still need to do my own visiting teaching this month. One of my women I visit has a baby due in a couple weeks!) were coming over at 3:15. Because I was planning on making a loaf of french bread, which takes about 3 hours to make, I figured it would be alright to start making it after my VT's had left, probably around 4. But nope. We ended up taking until after 5! I guess that's what happens when women get together, right? Scrounging for ideas for dinner, I decided to still make pasta and did an internet search for 30-minute rolls. I cooked up some whole wheat spaghetti, browned some ground beef and mixed it with some homemade sauce i've had in the fridge for a while. Then I chopped and steamed some broccoli, all while working on these "30 minute" rolls. They ended up taking longer than that because I tried to use my kitchenaid for them and it just wasn't working, so after 10 minutes in the machine, I pulled the dough out and mixed and kneaded by hand instead. After only 10 minutes of rising, it went into the oven for 10 minutes, and came out fairly yummy! I rubbed some cold butter over the tops and then ate 4 with dinner. Haha! I'm actally typing this Monday morning and just devoured off the last 3 rolls from last night.
No dessert for us last night, though. I had cleaned the whole kitchen earlier and dinner made enough of a mess. I really didn't want even one more dish to clean. We did eat a handful of sour skittles though. :)

Day 6. Monday:
Brad had cereal for breakfast, Katie had cheerios, and I had 3 leftover rolls form last night's dinner. Haha!. The surprising thing was that Brad made dinner! I was originally just going to heat up a can of soup, but was feeling kind of lazy and Brad offered, so I accepted! He made up some hamburgers and tater tots while Katie had leftover spaghetti  from the night before. Pretty yum! Thanks hon! I also purchased a Bountiful Basket yesterday along with the 5 pack of bread they offer, which brings my "grocery" total to $68.48. Yikes! This $100 limit is hard! Maybe I should have Brad take away my debit card for the rest of the month? But, we have a good amount of everything we need to make meals for the next couple of weeks, so I think I can make it. With the fruits and veggies and 5 loaves of bread this weekend with the Bountiful Basket, I will make this pantry challenge work! We will probably be having a lot of pasta and cereal in the next couple of weeks, since those are my two biggest stockpiles, but i've also started exercising again, to balance out those extra carbs. We'll see! Tomorrow is the last day of week one. And then it's on to meal planning for week two, as well as checking out the upcoming week's sales ads for Smith's.

Day 7. Tuesday:
So, we bummed out today and ordered pizza. We got a Pizza Hut ad in the mail and that P'Zone on the front just looked so gosh darn good! Oh well. There's an extra $12 to my stipend for the month, bringing my total to about $80. Agh! Only $20 left and still 2 1/2 weeks to go! Fortunately, this challenge has really helped me see just how much stuff we have and how much I have to work with! There will probably be a lot of pasta and soup and cereal in the coming weeks, but oh well. That's the price you pay to go on a cruise, right? Lol! We'll get plenty of yummy food on the ship. I'm thinking the only things I will really need to buy in the coming weeks are milk, flour and maybe some eggs. I will just have to really work at couponing to buy any more than that. :D

I was supposed to post this on Tuesday. Oops! I will post about this weeks meals later today hopefully, starting with a couple days ago on Wednesday. Lol.


katrina said...

why do you need pee pads? lol!

Kimberly Odasso said...

Because they are free!!! And I use them as regular pads for periods. AND because i've had a baby and sometimes, you cough, you sneeze, you laugh, you run, you jump. . . pee!

Laura said...

Ben found this deal that if you signed up for the pizza hut website you got a free p'zone. We signed up under two different email addresses and got two free. I don't know where he saw it at, but you might want to do a search. :)