Saving some green at the grocers

My husband and I stopped in at Kroger yesterday and bought just a very few groceries. I was expecting everything to cost about $30 max. NOT! Our few grocery items of fruit, coffee creamer, tortillia chips etc cost over $40!
I had noticed that it seems as if cheese (any kind) has gone up at least a $1, along with other dairy products such as milk, cream, even eggs! We’ve not noticed in our home the rising cost of rice or flour, but I am almost at the bottom of my 5 gal bucket of wheat flour and will be looking for a good deal on that soon!
One media outlet stated we are experiencing the worst food inflation in almost 20 years! Another suggests giving our children soda rather than milk because it’s cheaper!? (We’ve not bought any soda in months so I don’t even know the cost but I suggest you give children a much healthier choice – WATER…would save even more $$)
Food is not the only place we’re noticing a squeeze in our budget. I am sure you all have dreaded pulling into the gas station and filling up. Here in my town gas was $3.75 for a gallon of unleaded! Wowzers! But still gas is cheaper than a gallon a milk…go figure. I was surprised however that the average American spends more on groceries than on gasoline. Households spend an average of 13% on food but only 4% on gas. While we need to budget the gas and be frugal with our trips, I think it would be wise to find ways to cut our grocery bill as much as possible.
Seeing that we can’t just boycott food (although it would hurt some of us eh!?) here are some ways I’ve compiled to help us save some green at the grocery store.

1) See my previous post Quit wasting food as well as wastedfood.com to find a wealth of interesting and informative articles on this problem.

2) Grow a garden!

3) Buy local

4) Eat less…Drink more water. Most of us mistake thirst for hunger. So, next time you get that twinge of “hunger” drink a large glass of water. A good rule of thumb is to halve your weight and drink that in ounces. Say I weighed 130 lbs 😉 1/2 that to 65 lbs, so I should drink 65 oz of water a day.

5) Don’t forget to menu plan!

6) Make foods from scratch. Bread, muffins, cookies, ice cream, salad dressings etc.

7) Avoid processed foods, buy whole foods. Whole foods fill you up more and are better for you. Processed foods cost more per ounce than whole foods.

8.) Don’t eat out.

9) Skip aisles in the grocery store. You’d be surprised at how many aisles can be skipped in the store when you cut out processed foods! Flee the temptation to walk down aisles that do not have the food items you need.

and lastly

10) Budget and carry a caculator with you. Tally your purchases as you shop. Stay within your budget.       Occasionally stop, look through your buggy and ask yourself “Do I really NEED this?” We’ve returned       several items back to the shelf doing this.

There are a ton more ways to save at the grocery store but these are a few that I am partial to.

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May 20, 2008 at 10:01 am 1 comment

New Ice Cream Recipe!

Awhile back I posted my super easy, no ice-cream maker needed, strawberry ice cream recipe. I have since experimented with different recipes and have come up with a chocolate/peanut butter version. Oh yeah!!

Here’s the recipe:

3 egg whites
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 cups heavy cream
1 cup peanut butter

Beat on high 3 eggs whites, sugar and vanilla for 10 minutes. Should be light an fluffy. Add cocoa powder and beat another 2 minutes.

In a separate bowl whip heavy cream on high until light and fluffy.

Fold whipped cream into egg whites. Pour into a 9 x 13 in glass dish. Dollop with peanut butter. Depending on the type of peanut butter you use you can actually sort of drizzle the peanut butter. I use all-natural peanut butter and when warmed to room temperature it can be soft and easier to work with than say Jif.

Freeze for at least 5 hours.

Delicious!

May 17, 2008 at 06:49 am 3 comments

And the winner is…

                                                            

 

 

Congratulations Kari Follett! My son spelled your name wrong…OOPS!
Hope you enjoy the book!

May 16, 2008 at 12:26 pm Leave a comment

Add your own pizza toppings?

O.K. call me stupid but I NEVER thought of doing this!! I am definitely going to try this out.

I usually try to make my own pizza because it is healthier but we like parlor pizza I don’t always have the time.
I may just have to deliberately set aside toppings through the week so we CAN do this! 🙂 Some weeks though we do have bits of this and that to add to a cheaper cheese pizza.

Have any of you done something similar?

May 15, 2008 at 05:44 pm Leave a comment

Romance Novels and the Christian

In my closet I have boxes full of “Christian” romance novels, which I started collecting in my teen years. I have every book of a particular author intending to pass them on to my daughter when she turned 13. I spent hours filling my mind with stories of love and romance often finishing a book in one day. I then would re-read my favorite parts over and over. As I look back, I remember my favorite parts were usually describing some romantic gesture or “innocent” affection between the lovers.

I was raised in a good, separated, Christian home. My mom was very careful in what I was allowed to read, usually reading/skimming books before passing them on to me. But in this one area I feel she might not have realized how reading this type of material can shape your thinking and views on what a godly relationship should look like, as well as inflame feelings in a young girl that should lie dormant until the Lord brings her man on to the scene. One verse that comes to mind is Proverbs 4:23 “Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life.” Sounds as if we should spend a great deal of time and effort guarding our heart, doesn’t it?

I am certain some of you are thinking that I am making WAY too big of a deal out of this. I mean, aren’t these books full of Christian values, morals, purity!? Doesn’t it give us a good picture of what godly relationships should look like, what it’s like to fall in love, how to know when it’s not right…or that it’s just good clean entertainment? Maybe you’re right…maybe you can read these books and get something totally different out of them…maybe you are such a strong Christian that your views and expectations are unruffled as you read…Maybe, but it was not true for me. 

I personally know ladies that have been dissatisfied with their relationship with their husband because he was not “romantic” often inflamed by her unrealistic expectation of how he “should” be. Is it right to read (or even watch) things that will only contribute to this problem? How would you feel if your husband looked at an picture book full of naked ladies and therefore becoming bitter with you because you did not measure up? Is it a secret that women like romance and men like the physical relationship? I do not think so. When will Christians admit that there is little difference in romance (outside of your marriage) for women and images for men?

Dr. Julianna Slattery, psychologist and author of Finding the Hero in Your Husband, said that “For many women, these novels really do promote dissatisfaction with their relationships. There is a neurochemical element with men and porn, but an emotional element with women and these novels. I have met women that are addicted to these novels.”

Now she is talking about the romance novels that are not “Christian” but I would like to argue that they are one in the same without the graphic descriptions and some religion throwed in. I always tend to be leary of those things that are of the world that are cleaned up and polished for Christians. Mark those things and avoid them.

The same principle could apply to a many number of things. Having a little girl, I watch out for movies she watches and books that she reads that encourage thoughts about love, romance and all the fluttery feelings that go along with that. Praise the Lord she wants to fall in love, get married and all the blessed emotions that come with marriage but it is not time for it yet. The desire she has/will have is natural and of the Lord so I need to do nothing to encourage more of those feelings as she has no outlet. I can think of a great many a movie that are generally thought of as clean that have little girls full of thoughts of marriage, love, kissing etc. For some reason it is considered cute in a little girl but if a little boy were to watch another movie and come away with the same desires it all of a sudden isn’t cute?! Hmmmm…something to think about.

Another point to bring out about these things is they can also foster desires for undue attention. The beauty, glamor and attention the heroine receives is certainly opposite from what the Bible says in I Titus 2:9 “…that women adorn themselves…with shamefacedness…” Have you ever compared this verse while your daughter was playing dress up and dancing, doing ballet or twirling for attention? This same verse also says “…not with gold, pearls, or costly array” Are we teaching a double standard to our young girls when it’s o.k. to live out their fantasies via books and movies and pretend play but tell them they are not to carry on like that in real life? I think so.

So how do I sum this all up???

It is sad to think that we could miss seeing the “Hero in our husband” because he didn’t romance you like Prince Charming in the book you read last night. No poor husband could measure up nor could we. I encourage you to embrace the husband you have, be all that you know *he* wants you to be and appreciate the *romance* HE can offer. Even if it is remembering to put the toliet lid down! We could all escape via our thoughts and find another situation better than ours if we tried hard enough. On the flip side, couldn’t dear husband find a better wife than you?

I’ll close with this Scripture:

“Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge. Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee or forsake thee.”

Note: I realize this is not a popular teaching, but I felt I needed to be true to what the Lord has been laying on my heart and at the encouragment of my husband decided to post. I am surprised at how very little there is written on this topic as I feel these things should be obvious to us Christian women. I am afraid society has done a fantastic job in programming us to think as the world does on a great many subjects. I pray we consider these things, talk to our husband and break with society and truly be a people that has purified themselves unto Jesus to become a peculiar people.

 

May 14, 2008 at 11:28 am 8 comments

Frugal Friday – Give Away!

Today I am hosting my first give-away! Just leave me a comment on a way you’ve been frugal this week and I will have my children pick a name at random and will announce the winner here on my blog NEXT Frugal Friday May 16th!

The book I am giving away is Jonni McCoy’s “Frugal Families”

This is a great book with tons of ideas for saving $$ on decorating, moving, pets, even cars and insurance! Get tips on getting out of debt, making money from home, and teaching your children how to be frugal!

Don’t forget! Leave me a comment on a way you’ve been frugal this week and check back NEXT Friday, May 16th when I will announce the winner!

Check out all the frugal tips over at Biblical Womanhood’s Frugal Friday!

May 9, 2008 at 07:58 am 19 comments

I found it!

…the perfect bread recipe!
I was skeptical when this recipe claimed to be light and fluffy. I thought I had tried almost every “Light and Fluffy” whole wheat bread recipe out there but this recipe proved me wrong.
To this recipe I added 2 Tbls of lecithin and 1 Tbls of gluten.
I’ve made this bread twice and both times they turned out perfect loaves of whole wheat bread.
It’s especially yummy fresh out of the oven…ahem… slathered in BUTTER!

If you try this recipe out let me know! I’d love to know if others liked the recipe!

May 8, 2008 at 07:44 pm 1 comment

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