Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Meal Plan Saturday

Last week went well. We had one day where we didn't get to cook because of our schedule (Sunday, and we ended up doing sandwiches and fruit), and we swapped days a bit and dropped a pork chop dinner... but that said it was otherwise a good plan for the week. Oh, and Easter was a huge change. See below.

This week, My darling husband said, "Babe, I am going to grill on Easter. Does that work?" Uh, yeah. So he made ribs and sausage, I made beans, pepper potatoes, fresh corn, cornbread and devilled eggs as well as the cake. The breakfast casserole was still a go and was delicious. I will for sure do that little time saver again. We ate leftovers on Monday and on Tuesday we used a gift certificate for a place we have been eyeballing called Giordano's and had a smattering of their dishes and everyone tried everything. It was a very nice meal and a bargain. Triple whammy.

So, for the balance of the week here is our meal plan:

Everything Jambalaya and a few pieces of chicken left out for the kids
white rice

Lasagna Bake
Caesar salad
Mama D's Italian Bread

Friday ~ Dexter's Birthday
Daytime - picnic at the springs - shhhh, it's a surprise.
Dinner - Chuck E Cheese and a "birthday cake shaped like a 6 with green and yellow mini m&m's and candles and chocolate frosting and yellow cake." He has such a firm idea in his mind, I hope I can meet his high standard.

Roast Pork
Black Beans

Cuban Sandwiches
Fruit & Cut Veggies

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Next week brings with it my husband's birthday and Cinco de Mayo, which should be more fun this year since I have two tortilla makers in place. Next up, getting pictures. Wish me luck.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Meal Plan Monday... errrr... Saturday

Here's the weekly pan:

Jamaican Patties - doubled - yielded 10 small patties, the kids easily ate two each.
Rice and pigeon peas
Tossed Salad w/mango vinaigrette

Sunday ~ the husband will be firing up the grill
grilled chicken legs/thighs
hot dogs
baked beans
pepper potatoes
grilled corn
cornbread muffins


Beef Tacos
Chicken or beef enchiladas ~ depending on if there is any leftover chicken
Mexican rice
quips, queso, salsa

Pork chops
Onion strings
Green beans

Chicken noodle soup
carrot sticks & celery

pizza pockets

Spicy chicken tenders

Sunday ~ Easter
Breakfast Casserole, fresh fruit and toast

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

A No Fuss Meal so I spend as much time relaxing as possible. Holidays do not need to equal stress.
Baked Macaroni and Cheese
Sock-It-To-Me cake

Friday, April 8, 2011

Theory vs. Ability

In theory I should be able to get us totally out of debt by the end of the year, credit card (mine)and student loan included, car and house excluded, but car by the end of 2012. All that and pay for vacations and Christmas in cash of the cold and hard variety.

Plus a nest egg of three month's expenses. That sounds awesome, right? I mean, the little chart on the side of my Microsoft Money program says it's so... so why won't it work?

I know the car repair/kids outgrowing clothes/surprise sickness of it all is always looming in the not so distant future. But still, why can't I seem to hold onto an extra dollar? I save a great deal on my groceries now, and why isn't that making more of a dent? All that's happening is a slower hole digging process than we had before.

It's scaring me.

Then I read something that made total and complete sense: If you don't have a budget in place and a plan for every available dollar you save, anything you save is really pointless.

It's like looking at one of those double rainbows. I felt the heavens open and the sun hit my face. Doh!

So, a mere three hours later I have set up what we actually spend on a sheet of paper. I found an awesome worksheet that helps you see your expenditures and track your actual spending for a month. I was assured you'd be surprised to see what you actually spend vs. what you think you spend.

For instance: I thought I spent about $200 a week on groceries I actually spent about $320. What!?! I was a little shocked. That is considering the eating out (minimal) and the incidentals bought at the grocery store. Once I made that determination, I set about to end the overspending. Now I am closer to $250, but I haven't tracked. Not really closely. That is not helping one little bit.

I feel like I can actually make this happen for us. I would love... LOVE... to totally live off K's salary. That would rock hard. Then we could go all Dave Ramsay and snowball this debt to nothing.

For now... well, baby steps.