This Week In My Home: Fresh Wind

Janell was rather amused by this old gal...she does look a bit manic doesn't she?  I love the colors in this old vintage ad and I admit her 'crazy eyes' as John would call, them amused me, too.

We've had the usual assortment of weather for spring.  Mornings and nights can be a bit chilly and afternoons can be downright hot.  While a hot breakfast is most welcome, something less heavy and hot is wanted for the later meals.

I've been busy as can be the past few days.  Determined to have a 'new' look in my home, freshen things up.  I am operating with a $0 budget for the most of it, having spent my small bit of money on stuff for the kitchen makeover.  All that thinking hard and working hard makes me hungry and tired and more than ready for a few quick and easy meals, too.  Shame I didn't get around to making any!

In the week ahead I have some onions that are quickly sprouting.  I want to dice them and put them in the freezer.  A friend does this and microwaves them on high for 30 seconds.  She says it cooks them just enough to kill any overpowering odor so it doesn't take over the freezer.  Good to know.  I also have some sweet potatoes that I've been slow about using.  I think I'll cut them into fry shapes and partially bake then I can pull them out later to finish off.  Or make up a sweet potato casserole or two.  I really like sweet potato casserole.   And then there are regular potatoes.  I thought I'd make up a potato casserole or two for the freezer.

I stuck hard to my meal plan this past week with two deviations.  We skipped the soup and had steak dinner that day and on Friday, I skipped the planned meal in favor of having another soup with tuna melts.  The black beans and rice dinner is top of the menu this week because I can cook it before church and come home to warm it up.

Black Beans and Rice, Tortillas, Salad, Pudding
Nothing new here to see folks, just a moved over menu...move along, move along...

out with Mama

Almond Chicken, Rice, Garlic Green Beans, Mandarins
I remember the day I was eating out at the Chinese place and realized that the chicken dish I was eating was frugal as could be...if made at home!  Celery, carrot, onion and a bit of chicken, a brown sauce and nuts.  Nothing to it and all the ingredients I had at home anyway.  I'm hungry for this dish and it's economical as I can use dark meat which is far less expensive than breasts.

Tuna Pasta Salad, Crisp Crackers, Cream of Tomato Soup
This salad is one of John's favorite warm weather dishes.  Typically we eat it alone with out the soup but if it is a little cool, I'll serve soup alongside.

Kielbasa with potatoes au gratin, Garden Peas, Carrot Raisin Salad
I don't have a big piece of kielbasa but I think I can stretch this by slicing.  It will give enough meat taste to the potato dish without needing a full portion each.

on my own

eating away from home

Well that was easy planning!  I'd forgotten John's two work days and our day out of the house.  Now let's see what sort of work we can get to this week:
Jobs This Week: 
Last Week:
Get bill box in order and pay bills.
Grocery list and shop.
Clean out guest room for a temporary stay.
Get shed in order so if necessary I can move things out there.  That means shifting things so I can do both long term and short term storage and get to what I need.
Prepare a few entrees ahead.  Meatloaf, perhaps spaghetti sauce, some mini sized burger patties, and a few ready to toss in the crock pot items, like the cranberry chicken recipe.  
Start exploring cookbooks for budget/time friendly recipes.
Put some cookie doughs in the freezer.  

This Week:
Start making the kitchen curtains.
Get into town to the booth and put up some new stock.(tagged and ready to go)
Take a fun day for thrifting, library, necessary errands.
Finish up the living room spring freshening.
Make a carrot cake and chocolate chip cookies.
Yard work for 15-30 minutes most days.
15-30 minutes in shed each day as well.


Mable Hastings said...

I buy a bag of onions when they are on sale. I peel and then thinly slice them. I put up to five pounds in my crock pot and add a stick of butter. I set it on low for 8 hours. About half way through I stir and I also take the lid off for about two hours so the onions are cooked and not steamed. The result is caramelized onions that I portion out into half cup sizes and then freeze. Since I started doing this, I have had no onions go bad and for a quick dinner I add a load of onions to chicken or beef bullion, melt some cheese on bread and in no time I have French Onion soup.

Sew Blessed Maw [Judy] said...

You are moving along very well with your plans.. some really good menu plans.
Hope you have a great week.. Look forward to seeing your new kitchen curtains, when you get them made..Judy

vickie morgan said...

Isn't it nice to get outside and enjoy the Spring weather? Although I do enjoy the winter break I'm now ready to get out and do some yard work too!

It's nice to know about the onions -I'll have to try this too before any go bad. Thanks for the tip and the one in the comments too.

doe853 said...

Lovely to hear you talk about working outside. Today it is 10 degrees and the wind is howling! I live through the cold spring through your posts. What kind of potato casserole do you make, it doesn't get mushy in the freezer?
I like the idea of the onions in the crockpot that Mable talked about in her comment, I think I will try that too!
Enjoy your week, Dale

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the hints you gave about the onions Terri and also the one from Mabel Hastings in comments. I have started keeping a notebook with the hints,recipes and such I get here so I have them in one place. I have incorporated so many of them in our lives.
I have been sweeping and trimming bushes and doing odds and ends outside this morning to make our place shine a bit more. I washed the throw rugs from round the house and they are drying on the line. I can hear the many birds chirping outside as I write this. It is so beautiful outside here today.
We have eaten many meals now that I froze ahead or things from parts of other meals that we combine with other things later for a new meal. As I have said you were my inspiration to do more of it and to make it a habit. It has been so helpful. !! :-)

Karla Neese said...

I'm adding my thanks to the tip about the onions as well and thanks to Mabel Hasting for the awesome carameled onion idea!

Spicy Apple Cake - I FOUND IT!

While sorting though Mama's cookbooks the other day I came across a Family Circle magazine cookbook that looked familiar.  I brought...