Wednesday, November 28, 2012

"Turkey Time" A Week Later...

Since our family of five went to visit family on Thanksgiving Day and again for the weekend, our turkey has gone uncooked, our stuffing and mashed potatoes un-fixed, and our rolls and desserts, un-baked.  That is, until this coming weekend. 

I actually prefer it that way.  Who really wants to eat turkey, and pumpkin pies for three to four days in a row, not taking into consideration the leftovers.  So, we will be having our family "feast" Sunday afternoon, and then I will freeze the leftovers in portion-sized containers to be used later on.  Some of my ideas for the leftovers are:  Casserole, pot pie, soup, and the ever favorite sandwiches...warm, open-faced are my favorite served with the leftover stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, but a cold slab of turkey between two pieces of bread are fine too, of course.

But, also now that Thanksgiving is over for another year, I need to consistently remind myself that I should be more vocal about giving thanks more often, and not just on the holiday itself.  So, here goes.  My thankful moment came today when Anna, my three year old and I were out running errands after dropping Robyn off at school.  We first went to the library.  I am thankful for all of the choices we have there, books, movies, games, and other fun activities, like pre-school story time that we try to attend each Wednesday morning.  Anna is sitting through more and more of the story hour, and hopefully soon she will want to stay the whole time.  Secondly, I am thankful for the $10 vegetable and fruit sale at the grocery store.  You could buy any number of certain produce for $10, provided you could put it in a provided bag.  We ended up with eight oranges, one bag of baby carrots, four small bundles of romaine lettuce, five onions, a stalk of celery, and a good sized pineapple.  If we had had more money I would have filled more than one bag, but I was able to get one produce bag, two gallons of milk, and a snack bag of chips for Anna for $19.88 and I had $20 cash.  Pretty good for a extremely tight budget.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Christmas Cards vs. Holiday Newsletter

Christmas cards are fun to get, I really cherish the cards that I get in the mail every year, though the number is sadly dwindling.  Some of them have newsletters filled with a variety of information, others have copies of pictures included, some are in small print, while others have larger print, some are on fancy Christmasy letterhead, while others are on on colored paper.

I am set for both this year, as I have been in years past.  I just don't know how I am going to approach my address list this year.

The Christmas cards are pretty easy.  I sign the card with pretty much a generic signature, and with family I want to include a personal quote or a few comments, I do so.  This year, I have a family picture to include, as well as Robyn's school picture, to those select few. 

As for a newsletter, that is where things get a little tricky...Do I have enough to chat about for a newsletter?  Should I include good and bad scenarios?  Or should I just sugarcoat, like a lot of people find themselves doing this time of year?  Pictures or not?  How much or how little should I share?  There is a lot to consider if I go this route...

Well, I had better decide, I only have about two weeks to sign, address, include a newsletter if decided on and mail out before they might end up arriving after the holiday...

Now, if only I could decide who is getting a card this year!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

One Dollar Dinner for Four!

This boxed of rice and seasonings make my life so easy, and are certainly budget friendly! 

There is a recipe on the box even.  I added one pound of browned hamburger that I already had, and 1/2 cup of frozen corn, again that I already had and presto, dinner was served!  And instead of a salad or slices of bread with butter, which either would have been a good addition, I sliced a mini loaf of sweet potato bread from our freezer that I had baked a few days ago, and dinner was served.

The cost breakdown for me was as follows:

One box of Rice a Roni - $1.00 on sale
Water - no cost
2 tablespoons of Butter - already had on hand
One pound of hamburger - already had on hand
1/2 Cup of frozen Corn - already had on hand

The cost breakdown if you needed to purchase the items:

One box of Rice a Roni - $1.50 (approximately)
Water - no cost
2 tablespoons Butter/Margarine - Possibly no cost, could be omitted in none on hand
One pound of hamburger - $3.00 (approximately)
Corn - $0.65 (cost for one can, only use 1/2 cup, will have leftovers)

My cost:  $1.00           Cost if Purchase of Additional Items:  $5.15 (approximately)
Remember that is for a family of four, which breaks down to $1.29 a serving!

The best test as to whether this dish was successful is my 3 year old.  She ate most of it on her own with out prompting, and pleading to do so! We will be having this again!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

So many people are grateful....

I have seen a lot of blog and facebook posts where different friends and family are listing, sometimes daily different things that they are grateful for.  One blog lists a different thing daily.  Her home, her car, her husband, each child individually, technology, and finally today, her scriptures.  It is hard to pinpoint one thing each day, as I am of course grateful for all of those things daily.

Are you grateful fo something in particular?  Other than the usual, I mean.  We are or can be grateful for our families, our home, electricity, our Heaven Father, our Savior, the scriptures, and so on but is there something that you are specifically grateful for that is out of the ordinary?

For me, there are two things for today.

#1.  My Pain Pump!  I am truly grateful that is working correctly today, and dispersing the medicine that it does so that I have been able to remain upright and moving in a forward direction.  Even though I hurt, I am no longer curled up in a ball, and taking huge dosages of OTC and perscription meds so that I can function.  Though I still do occasionally, and probably will be doing that tonight, I know that with a little rest and respite, Ican be upright again in a day or two.

#2.  The food in my fridge.  Especially this last month, things have been tight financially, really tight.  But, I called our Relief Society President today to see if she was going to need help picking up the Thanksgiving bundles next week for our ward members in need, and she informed my that our family would be getting one as well.  It was such a relief!  I am not a person to ask for help, I am more of a suffer in silence person, but she shared with me, that she was given a prompting by the Holy Spirit to have a bundle ordered for us.  She told me that she just felt so strongly that we needed a little help this month, and I got really emotional, because I know that Heaven Father is truly watching out for us! 

So, my question to you is,what else are you grateful for?

The teenager's room!

Oh, my...where do I even begin? 

Well, for one, I got so sick of the seven, yes...SEVEN large plastic, fast food drink cups that had been in her room, that finally on Sunday she got rid of them! One of which after we kept telling her was probably growing something, she admitted that several of them were.  But, sadly that isn't the worst!

I got so tired of the growing pile of dirty clothes and whatever else was lurking underneath that I cleaned up her floor, which took 30 minutes, and part of that was sorting her laundry, which she never does, and now there are three good piles of laundry.  Some of which may be clean and some that I know is dirty, but I got sick of sniffing from a safe distance to tell, so technically I am treated it all as dirty.  I even made her bed.  Which I haven't done in quite a while, but she was sleeping on her newer mattress, well, OUR newer mattress without even a mattress pad, so it was time!

I have threated until my face is blue to take a trash bag to her room, and I almost did today, but I thought better of it,as I might end up finding some of my belongings among her piles...

So, what do you do with a messy teenager, turn young adult?

I wonder if she will even notice that she can see her floor right off? 

Friday, November 9, 2012

A peaceful moment during a stressful time!

Last night was wonderful!  Six Sister's from the Relief Society, including myself spent an evening together at the Twin Falls Temple.  What amazed me was that there was a Sister with us, whose primary language is not English, and despite that, the Holy Spirit was so strong that the language barriers were not an issue!  Once our session was complete and we were all gathered, that sweet Sister embraced each of us with such tenderness, it brought me so close to tears! 

After the week that I have endured, it was such a respite to go to the temple, and close out the rest of the world and just think spiritual thoughts, and ponder.  As always throughout my time there, I pray for those in my life who may need special blessings, but once I am in a session, I focus on who I am there for.  I always say specific prayers for the deceased Sister, that she might be open to learning what is being taught, and I focus on being there in that moment.  For me, that puts me in tune with the Holy Spirit more by putting her before myself, if that makes any sense. 

As we were leaving last night, we had attended the last session for the night and the cleaning was about to begin.  As we were all walking out the doors, I looked back to see the cleaning crew, all of whom are temple-worthy, and who volunteered part of their evening to complete this, but I noticed that they too were dressed all in white.  They were all wearing white hospital-style scrubs to clean.  I suppose only in the Holy Temple will you find that.  At every moment in the temple it is a time of reflection and introspection, even while sweeping, dusting and mopping.  What a wonderful thing.

Thanks for letting me share! 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Voting today, A relief in more than one way!

Yes, I voted.  I am a person who voted for what a person stands for, for the most part.  Leading up to today and including today, many, many people I know or are people I know because of Facebook have given me a glimpse into their political life that I did not know, about them. 

I have watched over the last month especially as people who I thought were calm, go-with-the-flow, kind, peacefully people become so forceful with their opinions and stances on issues that I was taken aback.  I have an opinion, and that is my opinion.  I feel that they are intitled to their own opinions, and I am not a person to push or force my opinion on another person.  Free Agency is a belief of mine.  But, I found that over the last month or so, people were whether meaning to or not, pushing at me because my opinions did not jive with theirs. 

I still like and admire many of these people, and still call them some of my dearest friends, but I am now looking at them in a slightly different light.  Whether the person I voted for, or you voted for wins tonight, I hope that we can still be friends in the morning! 

I just hope and pray that America and the American's and others who live here can work together, and come together as a society to better things here for those of us who live here!

The reason I am relieved is because I have voted, and that is my say in the matter, and number two.  There will be different ads, posts, tweets and the like other than political verbage!

So, whoever you are planning to vote for today, that is great, just get out and vote! Otherwise, you have no reason to complain if things do not go your way!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The last bit of fresh potatoes...

Made mashed potatoes that I have now frozen.  I figure that if Ore-Ida can do it, then I should be able to do it too.  I also diced some fairly small and blanched them so that we can have hash browns too.  I have learned that blanching them keeps them from turning that cloudly shade of unappetizing brown in the freezer.  They tasted good before I put them in the freezer, so that shouldn't be an issue when I take them out to use. 

This next week, my hope it to make apple pie filling, and maybe some more Crock Pot applesauce.  The reason for that, my husband brought home a large apple box filled to the brim with Red Delicious Apples from one of his bosses trees.  I thought the apple peeling was over for the year, but apparently I was wrong.  The girls and hubby do enjoy apples though, so who am I to complain.  Plus, they taste good, and were free, so I will not look a gift horse in the mouth. 

Even though our potatoes are in the freezer, I am looking forward to the semi-yearly gift box from my awesome sister-in-law.  She will be sending us product from her work to try.  Different varieties of potatoes, in practically every shape, form and flavor, varieties of breads, and vegetables, and the like.  Which we truly appreciate.  We wouldn't be able to afford anything like she sends to us.  Those boxes are still amazing to get.  The last one was about 70 pounds, which was send overnight delivery, packed in dry ice.  We love her for her thoughtfulness!

What is your favorite way to prepare potatoes?  Fried, baked, mashed, in a casserole, or straight?