Monday, December 30, 2019

I wrote Jan grocery list LOL

Since we are going to be out anyways in the snow yuck, Hubby figured we do the major shopping for Jan.  Then he can always do a pit stop when getting fuel or I can after appts for milk etc.

Tomorrow we are going to go visit Sister of my heart ( if her weather is decent as where she is to gets worse than us) and then doctor appt for this chronic fatigue, rapid pulse for no reason, headache, nose bleed, pain in my butt thing going on.

My mistake was asking Hubby to give me about 15 meals he would like to have this coming month. About 6 of them I have everything except cilantro, lime and avocado (and not it'a not all Mexican). Only 3 did I need meat and that is because I do not keep ground pork and ground poultry in the freezers, they are very seldom on sale so I don't stock up. THEN he came back and said we needed something to take if we went to a New Year's dinner but that depends on weather and how I feel and how he feels.

Fresh herbs and some salad items are going to be on the high side for sure.

On the menu with the note I am sure some will get bumped out for some reason or another AND I need to NOT make too many servings so we don't have leftovers for 4 days.

sausage patties, canned potatoes, 3 bean salad , spinach and mandarin oranges for tomorrow.

Ribs, black eye peas, mashed potatoes and kraut for NY Day unless we go to the dinner. Then it will be the day after.

Other meals he chose.
pork tapas, kale salad with smoked almonds and picada crumbs
chicken white bean chili
chicken saltimbocca with artichoke sauce
Rick Bayless shrimp n pork meatballs
Rick Bayless pork n beef meatballs(chipotle meatballs)
garlic soup
Turkey breast with Apricot sauce
Maple glazed ham
scallion sesame shrimp cakes with avocado wasabi sauce
chipotle black bean dip with mini sausage pigs in a blanket
Chicken phyllo pies
Leftover Christmas pie (Paul Hollywood)
Shepherds pie
enchilada casserole

I chose
Nonna's deep dish pizza.
butternut squash quiche
stuffed acorn squash
turkey noodles and mashed potatoes.
Stuffed cabbage rolls
Italian green beans with potatoes and ham (one pot)
Boiled cabbage, potatoes and carrots (one pot)
fried cabbage, fried potatoes with onions and yellow corn bread.
Beef bourguignon. 
sweet and sour beef brisket
123 pasta
scalloped potatoes and ham
mackerel patties, boiled potatoes and buttered peas
shrimp scampi
Salisbury steak or country fried steak (made of hamburger)
Chicken Divan or cacciatore or fricassee... depending on what I have in the house LOL

We will see how this goes tomorrow at the store and prepping it for the month

Sunday, December 29, 2019

Pantry challenge Dec 23rd... 8 days from the pantry

Dec 23rd we ate at Son 2's for our Christmas dinner with him. He had chuck roast, red potatoes. carrots and onions and pie. We brought home leftover broth, potatoes, carrots and onions.

Christmas eve was prime rib, shrimp cocktail, Son 2's leftover potatoes and carrots.Caramelized onions and mushrooms. We had fruit cake for dessert

Christmas day... leftover prime rib cheese and crackers.  It was a snacky day.

Dec 26th Fettuccine with broccoli and tomatoes and peaches. Fruit cake.

Dec 27th Leftover prime rib used for Philly steak pizza. Used leftover mushrooms and caramelized onions, ranch dressing and  mozzarella cheese.

Dec 28th   Chicken with apples, last of caramelized onions and mushrooms in a Dijon mustard cream sauce with rice. Leftover carrots and last of fruit cake.

Dec 29th... leftovers of the night before except I have fruit cocktail  instead of fruit cake.

I have set out the 2 pork chops tomorrow's meal along with sweet potatoes, green beans and pears.

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Yule, Happy LIFE

Daddy was awake and talking more than one word sentences when we saw him. He nearly broke my hand with his grip when he decided he had to hold my hand while he walked his wheelchair.  Was a good day as he said as we were leaving.

We stopped in a visited for several hours Hubby's parents , not only for Christmas but it was their 63rd anniversary. They are having several family in on Christmas and invited us. Hubby is not sure he wants to go since she is talking about over 50 in a very small house with 1 bathroom. He is not treated right by his two brothers. His sister does try even though there are several years between them. I told him we could go visit his siblings in Jan if he would rather do that but should at least call his parents and wish them Merry Christmas.

Son 2 cooked us Christmas meal last night as our schedules are not mashing at all this holiday. Was a wonderful meal of pot roast he did in the crock pot and baked onions from the oven (he got a smaller crock pot for himself and forgot that when he went to cook everything). I got him an instant pot as he had melted his when he forgot his glass stove top was still hot and put it on the stove. I also got him all the little extras that he could use in it. Came out the same amount of money as we gave the rest and since he is single it was the only gifts he had under his tree. He left a couple of the smaller ones under it for Christmas day.

Tonight, Christmas eve, Son 1 will be here (he usually refuses to get his picture taken) and I will have prime rib (using crock pot, new recipe, will let you know how that goes) sauteed onions and mushrooms, leftover carrots from Son 2 meal, baked potato (actually baked as the oven will be on anyways) and homemade bread rolls , which is why the oven will be on.  Shrimp cocktail and salad .We have fruit cake for dessert but I doubt if anyone will want any of it.

Tomorrow we will go back in to see Daddy again.

Hubby worked this morning as he didn't get the job done last night since we needed to be at Son 2. He has work lined up after Christmas. Not as much as the main person he hauls for won't be back up running until Jan 6th. Main person  works for an Englisher and they are on shut down until then.

Blessed Be

Saturday, December 21, 2019

Talking about 2020

Yesterday was a good day as we are trying to be on the same page of next month being a NO spend with NO exceptions month and eat from the pantry * 80 % real food minimum. 

We were eating dinner of prime rib scrap I pulled from the fat I cooked, mixed with cooked onions and mushrooms and on sub buns from the freezer with odd and ends shredded cheeses. 

We talked about our 2020 goals

Both us working on the projects we have chosen from the punch list.

Both agreed we needed better routines of meal times and eating healthier ( Pantry challenge GOOD CHEAP EATS, real food reboot DON't WASTE THE CRUMBS)

Hubby want to lose 24 lbs this coming year.

Hubby is going to also focus on that his HOBBY does not need to over run him to the point he does not get his work at home done. Something I have heard E and his family bring up to him several times. They all understand he has work here that needs done and he just needs to say NO I CAN'T like they do.

I have chosen because I MUST focus on my health. I need to continue add foods back into my diet SLOWLY. I need to rebuild bone density through what I eat, exercise and yoga (new mat ordered as old mat worn out and slides). Hubby considers the mat as medical. I need to get back to the sinus rinse to lower issues with my allergies.  I will need a routine of exercising.

I need to finish designing the railing for deck to have herbs grow there. Wilbur pees on pots or will back up to do business in them SIGH. 

I need to finish working out the new garden plan which is closer to what I was doing on the old farm.

I need to do Swagbucks regularly to help pay for my Amazon Prime (is has saved us more than I pay for prime)

I need POST the laundry routine because I am tired of repeating it to Hubby. I will put it in his bathroom on the wall above his laundry cart.

I need to get a sewing/mending routine. I had mending routine until we moved my chair out of the front room and upstairs. I am going to take Mother's chair out of the bedroom and put it in front room where the Christmas tree is and set up a mending area there. I need to declutter the east loft to set up the sewing room. I can put the chair I always sat in at Daddy's in the bedroom.

I need a home blessing routine along with a decluttering routine ( DECLUTTER 365) 

I need to get out of my comfort zone and expand what I read (READING CHALLENGE)

Hubby brought up the budget for 2020 (yes I rolled my eyes but kept my mouth shut, easy to do when you are stuffing your face).

I had suggested we turn down the furnace when we leave for longer than an hour more than once. He agreed to that finally. 
He is gotten a lot better of turning off lights and unplugging the LED strand of lights over the kitchen sink that we use for a night light to see the door (and black dog) in the middle of the night in the mornings.

He finally quit opening the curtains at 5 am when he opened on in the front room on the north side and felt the cold coming through. I have insulated curtains up but still these old windows can only do so much. He does open the one dining room curtain so he can see the sun rise. 

I close the curtains around 4:45 just before dusk. 

We talked about making appts so we don't miss a meal and to eat before we leave for an afternoon appt so we aren't coming out hungry and 90 min from home. Next month he has 2 and I have 3 appts at times so there is not excuse to eat out or pick up pizza at the gas station.

He DECIDED we needed to set the grocery list.

I agreed because I already have a basic list I use but wondered where he was going with this. 

Then he DECIDED we would only go every 2 wks, which means some of the fresh produce he PREFERS won't be here at the end of the 2nd week.

He did acknowledge my GI wants me to eat a small amount  of fresh produce daily to get my digestive system used to it again. In Jan it will be to add more beans which will put my back on my diet I was on during remission years ago.I danced in the office.

I just kept letting him talk...

Then it was if I could make it at home, we were not to buy it...I opened my mouth ( with no food in it HA HA) 

I am NOT making cottage cheese, and any other cheese. I have done both.

I will make tortilla wraps (his go to for sandwiches) , bagels, (his) English muffins(both) rolls, loaf bread , yogurt, buttermilk (I have learned to let the powder sit for 30 min to over night when made to get it more like regular buttermilk) etc. I have enough pasta but can make noodles, ravioli,and lasagna noodle. I cook from scratch most the time anyways. Except brownie and cake mixes. 

 I will make granola bars at which he frowned because he likes store bought better because they are not sticky and travel nicer in a hot truck which made him realize he was eating several of them along with his lunch... which explains why he gained weight when he should have lost.

I have not made potato chips or tortilla chips but can. We decided to quit the potato chips and only have tortilla chips as we eat salsa and cheese dip with those.

He brought up sour cream. I have had iffy tries on that as the heavy cream is ultra pasteurized. We don't use it a lot so when needed we could buy it.I have used plain yogurt instead.

Since he said twice a month I decided to split what produce was being bought at a time.

What will be bought both times to the store

milk 2 gallons each time

half and half .I have made my own but ended up spending more on milk and heavy cream than I did on the half and half ... 1/2 gallon each time

heavy cream 1/2 gallon each time

cottage cheese. 3 each time

5 bananas each time

2 lbs white mushrooms each time

2 lbs portabella mushrooms each time

ONCE a month

2 bunches of green onions

2 packages of tri color bell peppers (I can't eat green)

1 head of cauliflower or 2 bags of pearl cauliflower

3 heads of broccoli

4 lbs of carrots 

2 bunches of celery

3 lbs of apples (instead of 6 lbs)

We will see how this goes along with the pantry challenge

I did ask his sister for her recipe for canning meatloaf and her recipe. Her boys use it for sandwiches on a regular bases.


Thursday, December 19, 2019

The week before Christmas

I sit here with some "down" time waiting on the canner. Last quart of turkey broth and 3 quarts of beef broth in it. I got 12 cubes (used old ice cube trays) of beef fat for the freezer. I have 2 more things to do today of my get 8 done list.

Decorations are up. I will be adding a little to next year's if I have the money and it's on sale cheap. OR I find it in mother's stuff in the barn. I have 2 windows, both bathrooms, kitchen porch (non-chewable by Charlotte) and the deck that I would like stuff for...not sure what stuff but stuff.

I wrapped Son 2's gifts. Son 1 (single, never married, no kids)gets cash as he uses it to pay for his vacation in Jan. The girls all get cash as they all have kids (one has grandson) and they use theirs for eating out. It's not how we would like it but since it's their present (I give what we would spend) I give them what they want. I do miss buying presents and doing gag gifts. But Son 2 (single, never married, no kids) is okay with gifts or cash. I usually get him something small and cash.... but this year he has mentioned a couple things he wanted and was having to chose between because he had to replace his furnace and AC. He told me what he had chosen and why and that he was going to buy it AFTER Christmas. So I got the other for him. He will think it's funny as I reused the wrapping paper that was on our presents from him last year (that he reused from his grandmother) and wrapped the one present with freezer paper. I wasn't going out to buy Christmas paper for 1 present.  I ordered the last 2 gifts. Roses for Daddy(it's his favorite flower) and a Christmas wicker basket flower arrangement for Hubby's parents that they can sit on the table or the end stand in the front room.  Hubby and I don't "do" Christmas for each other...he does not like to buy gifts but I did wrap some different variety trail mixes I bought him from Aldi's since that is now on the do not buy list for next year.Dogs got new chew bones.

I will do some baking this weekend and do the Christmas cards(one of the 8 to do list for today).

Christmas eve is shrimp with cocktail sauce, prime rib roast and baked potato. Hubby would like a salad that we will have to buy. I have a Christmas pudding for dessert and Fruit cake for dessert. Son 1 will be here for Christmas eve. Not sure when we will connect with Son 2 as he is already over booked between two jobs and two groups he belongs to. I know the Sunday before Christmas he will be giving gifts out at the VA Hospital . The girls are booked solid between work and kids and their other sides. I still get thank you's for us canceling Christmas get togethers about 10 yrs ago. SO much stress on the girls. We try to do a couple get togethers in "off" times. Like during the summer (not July 4th any more) and in Sept for the family reunion. I am thankful for Facebook so we can stay in each other's life by long distance. I am thankful my parents and in laws didn't make us chose either.Especially when you are already part of a blended family and then belong to another blended family.

Other than a good cleaning on Monday and Tuesday morning, that's it for Christmas.

I still have garlic and onions to preserve but they can wait until after the holiday.

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

not even a week... pantry update.

I sent Hubby down to get a pound of the unsalted butter and he came back up with his Hard cider (forgot the butter)and asked where I put the food from the black refrigerator ....we ate it or I took it to the Christmas party and I froze the prime rib. The eggs were behind the prime rib roast.

Now it looks like this

The citrus is now in the bottom drawer.  The veggies have been ate, what cheese was left after the Christmas party is now in the other refrigerator drawer combining all the cheese. The brown sacks are mushrooms, they last longer in a paper bag. These didn't have a chance as four of the bags went in the cauliflower stuffing(dressing),half on the 5th one went in a casserole. What is left is in the hole that was in the kitchen refrigerator.I will be going without fresh mushrooms until Jan.

 The prime rib roast is now 3 smaller roasts, 4 steaks and 4 meals of shaved rib roast for philly steak pizza, philly steak subs and two stir fries and in the barn freezer.

That is beef scraps and broth on the top shelf from me dealing with the prime rib. That's on the to do list for tomorrow so by tomorrow that shelf will also be empty.

I had a good hole in the barn freezer but since we brought home a ham bone with enough meat to make to good meals and the broth and put the prime rib in it.  My hole is small again. I could get about 6 lbs of meat in it.

Normally I would be looking to fill in the empty spots in this frig but I know this coming week there will be lots of cooking so I will need places to put the leftovers.  Also I want to get the gray refrigerator down so I can transfer most of the stuff to the black on as the gray one is the one that has issues with freezing up and shutting down about once a year.

I have realized I under estimated how much dishwasher soap and dish soap I would need since I am cooking from the pantry. Two to three times with the dishwasher and at least one load of the big pans in the mudroom sink.It has one huge bowl so it's easier to wash big stuff in it.

Time to fix supper.. leftovers tonight

When Hubby decided to change the 2020 budget

to include 15 months of medical instead of 12


2 months of monthly bills


a new to us "dog" truck.  I am willing to sell or trade my car for the truck as the car is definitely too small to transport my 3 dogs. ALSO it would take a car off the car ins.


he decide to not file for Social Security this year.

I told him that a couple of the chosen projects might not get done but he needs to price out the ones he has chosen for himself.

The big question was is there going to be battles when I mention he is wanting to buy it's not in the budget? OR that he hasn't done something and it's costing us money? His answer... Probably.

I am okay with these changes. I really struggle to see us saving all of that and replacing the truck but if you don't plan it don't happen.

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Budget for 2020 and major projects still do to 209

I will start with the major projects still to do

caulking of 12 rooms

air barrier in 2 attics

deck railing (I want to grow herbs on the deck) and ramp

Awning over French doors on deck

more gravel to extend and widen the driveway and add to the parking area for the trailers

Build a removeable box for flat bed trailer (be nice if carrying things that shouldn't get wet)

front porch needs leveled, new posts, railing, banister at concrete steps( or ramped) and wood floor replaced along with painted

kitchen porch needs leveled, new posts, railing, banister at concrete steps and wood floor replaced along with painted. Two ceiling fans already bought need installed after painted.

back stoop to the mudroom door needs widened as you have to step back to open the door to come in.

gate at fence to enter ramp on the deck needs installed

basement ramp and the drainage pipe at that area needs redone

Redesign the gardens

replace 16 windows

side entire home

side barn porch

install lights in dog kennel area of barn (that dogs very seldom go in but if I had to take my daughters dogs for some reason they would love it)

install lights in garage section of barn where the tractor, lawn mower etc is stored

install closets and storage items in house.

continue to clear barn of boxes and extra furniture

We chose the following for this year:

caulking of 12 rooms ( I have half the caulking bought)

air barrier in 2 attics (just need staples)

deck railing with a note I want to grow herbs on the deck railing (I have part of what is needed for the railing)

gate at fence to enter ramp on the deck. Need to buy post and gate.

basement ramp and the drainage pipe at that area needs redone. All needs bought

Redesign the gardens.(need potting soil for grow pots and sq ft and boards for sq ft gardens

install closets and storage items (98% is in barn)

continue to clear barn of boxes and extra furniture.(freebie just tons of work and time)

We are doing cost estimates for these projects to know how much we need to save to get them done.

Now for the budget. Hubby turns 62 this year. Thoughts of living on only social security *which is really only meant to replace 40% of your income during retirement* is what we looked at.

Five times in 2019 I have changed the budget
1/1/2019 $8794
8/1/2019 $6123
9/12/2019 $5883
12/1/19 $ 5062.50

I went on social security and pulled what Hubby would get at 62 and then at the beginning of next year myself . Living on the budget I set for this coming year. We would be short the medical and would have to pull that amount from the IRAs' and that is a lot less than what we are pulling now and would make it last 3 times as long as now. Hubby would like to have his truck paid off or at least half off before pulling SS.I don't see that happening  along with the projects.

It also lets me know how much must be in the savings to cover us between him starting SS and me starting SS.

 That really is not a bad scenario since we don't count on his hobby to pay anything He has declined several jobs as he doesn't want a business, doesn't want the headache of paper work even though he has to keep track of some of it for a hobby, just something to have purpose in his days. He enjoys the travel but limits that as he wants to be home to sleep in his own bed.

I think the no spend month with written down exceptions is going to continue in to 2020 but with the line of do you want to draw SS or keep drawing the IRA  ? to push us to be more conscious of our choices.

Dec 8th thru 14th no spend, eat from pantry

Dec 8th
The day of rest was spent at home doing bedding and hanging outside on the porch clothesline to dry. Probably won't see another day good enough to do that that doesn't freeze dry the clothes. Ate leftovers from the frig as we also moved the the black frig down to the basement FINALLY and put the Christmas tree where the frig had been.

Dec 9th

Did laundry and got it on the drying rack before leaving for appt and errands. Made a note of what we were having for supper so if Hubby got home before me he could start it.

I had follow up appt with my GI  that is 2 hrs away. Got that done, pit stopped at Son 2's house,the stopped at store for the non food items needed  and the last of the unsalted butter. I had some odds and ends in the frig so used them to make a casserole for supper.

Hubby went over to deliver a message to E and he asked if we could get them dried milk as they use it in their summer sausage that them were going to make the next night.

Dec 10th.
I did laundry and hung on drying rack before leaving.

Primary doc appt for both of us. Good news is my blood work was great. Even my calcium and Vit D was were great which made doc decide the loss of bone density had to come from the steroids I was on the last 2 yrs. Diet is changed along with having to add more walking. I average 3 miles a day, looking to increase to 5. Hubby and I already had priced out local gyms/YMCA's since we don't qualify for silver sneakers yet. Decided to set up a "gym" in the basement. I have an area that I can clear (was going to get rid of most of it and no that wasn't in the pantry pics) for Daddy's exercise bike and the elliptical we will buy in Jan. I picked out 2 on Amazon as everything around here is running over $800.I need to do yoga also... going to ask Son 2 where he got his mat as it is nice and long.

Went to chiropractor and was adjusted. The pain I was getting in my left side of chest was actually from my right shoulder being out of place. Since Doc had just ruled out it coming from my heart it was kind of like "What now" feeling. Glad to find out it was my shoulder that I had operated on a few years back.

We ate out between doctor appts. Hubby paid for it using his spending money ($50 for each of us.) We got the senior citizen discount and left a 20% tip and still was under $25. We brought home leftovers for our supper that I could add veggies and fruit to.

Stopped at store to get dried milk for E. Got dried milk for us, not sure how I missed we were completely out. Got the last of the stuff for Christmas dinner this weekend and a few of the veggies that doc wants me to eat (broccoli and cauliflower that I do not have in the freezers as they didn't grow this year). We won't be having fresh salad for Christmas dinner. Too many recalls.

We stopped to pick up the 4-5 bone in prime rib I ordered and paid for.That is our standard Christmas eve dinner (Son 1 is coming this year). Hubby came out and put a huge roast in the truck. Before I could say any thing he said. "The order got messed up and it came in boneless. They gave us $3 off a pound so I decided to take a whole boneless prime rib roast since the price was the same. You can do 2 roasts, some rib eye steaks and shave some for philly steak pizza and philly steak subs."  Personally I would have taken the money but that actually comes out to paying $3/ lb for the meat. We finished our leftovers from lunch for supper

Dec 11th
I did laundry and since there was a good breeze I hung the clothes on the porch line to freeze dry. I brought them in when it started to snow and hung them on the drying rack to finish.

We had French toast (using up the last of loaf of bread that had been in frig for awhile and a good dozen of eggs) ham slice and hash brown patties. We used blueberry pie filling for the French toast and had 8 oz of V8 fusion (1 serving  each of fruit and veggies). We will eat the rest of the French toast for bfasts the rest of this week.

It was nice to have the day at home so I could straighten the pantry (and take pics and post on blog). Check recipes of what I want to make for the dinner party on Saturday and do a bit of decorating. I pulled the meat off the two turkeys I had roasted and put 1 lb in each bag. Have 8 more lbs of turkey meat in freezer. I put the carcasses to simmer to make broth.

Dec 12th
laundry is on the drying rack.
We got the lights on the outside Christmas tree.
I have the fat off the first batch of broth. There is 5 qrts in the canner.
I got 4 swags put together for the fence line by the front porch.
Dish washer is running with stuff that was from straining the broth.
Carcass meat will be next after it is done as it has the pitchers that I strain broth into to refrigerate over night to get the fat to raise. I got 4 more lbs of meat for the freezer. Broth is is pitchers in the frig.
Dinner was leftovers

Dec 13th
I baked a pandoro cake's a yeast cake for the dinner we are going to tomorrow. I also put together a bean party snack (not hummus) but will have to stop and get tortilla scoops for it ( I am using my spending money).

I did not do laundry as I was running the dishwasher 3 times today and too much water going into the septic line at the same time can cause issues.

Dinner was potato soup as I had 4 potatoes in the frig that I had brought home from Son 2's house that he had bought and had not ate...that was Aug. The potatoes was still good and made enough soup for our dinner.

Dec 14th
Hubby unloaded the dishwasher and put what wasn't dry on the drying mat before leaving for a last minute hauling job.

I started finishing the decorations. Keep taking breaks at the weather system has triggered my fibro and arthritis. I still have to decorate the cake and cook the cauliflower stuffing (actually it's a dressing as you do NOT put it in a bird) and get dressed for the holiday meal ..stop and get tortilla scoops (reminder to myself).

Half the laundry is washed and the drying rack is full. I will put the rest in later and set the delay start to start tonight so when we head home the washer should kick on so I can hang that laundry when I get home after the Christmas dinner tonight.

Enough of the clothes on rack was dry so I finished the laundry and got it hanging to dry.

Finished the cake and the dressing. Hubby got boxes to transport everything and we are both thankful he is no longer deep frying turkeys for this dinner.

We will check out Christmas lights on the way to the dinner and then take a different route home to see more lights.

Have bad weather coming in late tomorrow which means I will be in pain in the morning, need to remember to take something before bed to help head that off.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

one year pantry part 3

I still have turkey broth to can as I just cooked 2 of the last 3 turkeys yesterday.Meat is in the freezers but the carcasses are still simmering. I also still have pickled onions to can and onion marmalade to can.

row one and two
first bucket is jasmine rice and the box is the rose fingerlings potatoes I grew
second bucket is basmatic rice and the box it the Russian fingerlings potatoes I grew.

Row 3 and 4 . The bucket you barely see has dark brown sugar, light brown sugar , and powdered sugar. There is a box of Swedish fingerling potatoes we grew.The bucket on the crate is dried homemade noodles. The next bucket is ramen noodles with the purple fingerling potatoes we grew. The 3 buckets with the popcorn tin on top is regular sugar. 

The bucket is par boiled rice, the crate is more pie pumpkins and jack be little pumpkins.
This is the dried veggies from the garden, dried fruit, condiments, fermented foods and canned fruit

One year pantry part 2

this is the gray frig I do not trust BUT unless we need milk I won't be going back to the store until Jan. SO it got loaded.

my Hoosier cabinet in the kitchen
small bookcase of baking and canning items in kitchen

dry goods cabinet in dining room

from top of basement stairs
red onions, yellow onions , shallots and garlic are hanging on the walls.Bottom buckets from left to right are bread flour, sugar and long grain rice.
from left to right bucket of white Lily corn meal, minute rice , gallons of cooking oil, white vinegar and yellow onions
Left to right bucket, dried hash browns, crate russet potatoes, bucket dried diced potatoes, crate yukon potatoes, bucket dried sliced potatoes, crate red potatoes, buckets are all purpose flour... one is only got 1 pound in it and a tray of sweet potatoes

These buckets hold White Lily all purpose flour, White Lily bread flour, White Lily self rising flour, 00 flour , semolina flour, old fashion oats, and instant oats. There is patty pan squash, pie pumpkins, butternut squash, acorn squash and spaghetti squash.

This cabinet is a dry goods of desserts and side dishes. The dessert overflow is in the wringer washer. It's what I know we will use in the next 3 months.
I put the lid on the washer and then a weight on it  so nothing can get in it.

What a year's worth of food looks like PART 1...lots of pics

In this area I am more like a homesteader and since I live in an Amish (No we are not Amish or Mennonite) I finally fit in.

A year's worth of food for the two of us is
912.5 pints of veggies at 5 servings a day for each of us.
730 pints of fruit at 4 servings a day for each of us.
A pint is a pound the world around as the saying goes.
Not touching beans, condiments of any kind, meat (I don't can meat but I might start as my sister in law cans a great meatloaf in pint jars.) Not touching potatoes, garlic, onions, carrots, celery, rice and other grains.... it can be over whelming if you have not been raised this way as I was.

Kitchen frig after we added the fresh veggies and the stuff needed for Christmas dinner this weekend with SCARES group and Christmas eve with Son 1.

It's a little on the full side 😄😄
Small deep freezer in barn

a year supply of unsalted butter and 2 hams also are in this.

Deep freezer 1 * meat,veggies, breads, cheese,leftovers.

Deep freezer 2
ravioli, bread, cheese, fruit, veggies , chicken

Deep freezer 3
fruits, cheese, meat, bread, appetizers.

Black frig that was just moved from front room to basement

The large meat is a boneless prime rib. I ordered and paid for a 4-5 bone in prime rib for our Christmas eve with Son 1.BUT they did not get the correct thing in so took $3 off per pound for their mistake. IF I had been in the store I still would have only bought 4-5 pounds. HUBBY decided that was a great deal and took the whole thing since it came out to the same amount I paid for the other. Now I have a 20 lb prime rib that needs dealt with. He suggested a couple roasts, some steaks and then line slice some for philly steak subs and philly steak pizza. At least he thought it through BEFORE getting in the truck with

Monday, December 9, 2019

Dec 1st of pantry challenge no spending.

We have 10 items on the exception list for buying this month . One is getting bumped to Jan, 7 are for Christmas, 1 is distilled water for the humidifier in the bedroom and the last is butter for stocking with the price at $1.99. I might pay a bit more but not much.

This morning we talked over the dinner menu as 2 days will be crammed and the 3rd day Hubby might be out of state with a friend. When the day is crammed is a day we usually eat out.

So this week...
Sunday left over pizza from last night ( Advent)
Monday Soup of choice. He will probably do chili and I will do tomato.(crammed day)
Tuesday Corned beef hash and eggs.(crammed day)
Wednesday Butternut sq, black bean, cauliflower crust pizza (using left over sq from last week)
Thursday stuffed shell or manicotti pasta
Friday oven meal of some kind (Hubby may be gone at which I will probably do something from the freezers that is a leftover) (St Nick's day)
Saturday roast with root veggies.
Sunday (Advent) Leftovers.

We went over the basic grocery list. MY goal is every two weeks. Hubby thinks every 10 days.

Milk ( including to make yogurt so yogurt got taken off)
heavy cream
half and half ( I have dried buttermilk so that got taken off )
cottage cheese (requirement of diet put on by doc)
fresh mushrooms ( canned is high in sodium , I have heart failure), higher is sugar and lower in protein PLUS fresh white mushrooms are the only veggie with VIT D.
colored bell peppers (I can't eat green)
onions ( am to eat daily)
sweet potatoes (I have plenty of dried , canned and other white potatoes.)

ice cream (Hubby)
3- 6 pk of coke.(me) I get 1/2 bottle a day. Yes I drink room temp flat pop.
2- packages of thick sliced bacon

Other note is I can find tons of info on filling your pantry and how to store it. I can also find some about what winter sq to eat first (spag sq , acorn, followed by butternut and pumpkin) but finding style of menu or how to get it all ate even as a homestead was next to nothing. Then I found one that actually made sense. EVERY from the garden (fruit/veggie) one from the barn (eggs, dairy, meat) and one from the kitchen (food from scratch with grains).

Dec 2nd, we got part of the exception list. I did not get butter today. Aldi's was out. I will check tomorrow at two other Aldi's that are in that area.  Hubby paid for a cheap lunch for the two of us since my appt ran late so we missed getting home for lunch. Not good as we were already having errands after the appt. He usually has granola bars in the truck but he took them out since the truck goes in for maintenance tomorrow. Came in under what we had budgeted for what we bought. Hope to finish it tomorrow when we take truck in for maintenance, get blood work done and take the dogs to vets. If not I will end up finishing it by myself later.
Hubby said something about getting groceries. No need except for French vanilla ice cream for hot buttered rum. It can wait until I need milk also.
This week in honor of Advent we gave E & M 2 gamma lids for their food buckets. The smiles on their faces when they realized what they were was priceless. Both have asked about the costs in the past but with finishing paying off the hospital bills for Baby A, E needing surgery for a hernia in Jan and building a bigger calf barn this summer ... the money was not there on top on the gardens doing poorly and his corn for his animals getting ate by the deer and coons.

Dec 3rd  Hubby rechecked the grocery list we wrote. Bananas was not on it. I am suppose to be eating bananas on a regular bases so they went on the list. Since we dropped his truck off for maintenance on the way to blood work and then to vet (Wilbur and Charlotte shots and Rascal's tumor check , his surgery is the 17th and he will go in the night before since he can't even have water through the night and we are not removing water from the other two. All 3 got nails clipped. Getting nails clipped at $10 per dog removes the $25 per dog office visit so basically we save $45 by getting the nails clipped)...we picked the truck up after we were done at the vet's and stopped at 2 Aldi's in that area...they had called around and at this point everyone is waiting on delivery of unsalted butter. BUT I did get bananas and blueberry goat cheese to replace the cottage cheese. I am a bit tired of cottage cheese. I found a couple recipes for leftover rice I would like to try.I like rice pudding but Hubby doesn't. We had odds and ends left in the frig so we ate those for lunch and supper. There still is grilled butternut left and a baked sweet potato. I will put the butternut on pizza (project fire tv show recipe) and make twice baked sweet potato for another meal.

Dec 4th.
HUMMM I think Hubby is going to be very tired of me saying we are doing a no spend month when he mentions buying something. I had looked up a couple recipes we would like to try, you have to order the cook book ...I think that is fair for the chef as he does put other recipes on the internet for free. Hubby asked how much the book was. I did not check because we are in a no spend month. He wanted to know how much so I told him to look it up himself but see if a kindle version is offered as it is usually cheaper.

 I found a bag of O'Brien potatoes in the freezer so I cooked them and added eggs to make a frittia. Hubby calls it big egg. A friend calls it lazy omelet. It went will with of the rolls I had baked and the cookies M had sent over tonight with green and red sprinkles.The butternut and sweet potato went in the freezer.I said something to Hubby about focusing on clearing at least one freezer so when I had something that needed to be frozen I had room. He was agreeable and immediately mentioned there was breaded chicken and sweet potato French fries a couple bags of frozen mixed fruit and meatballs in the one freezer. Sounded like a hint to me.

I did the finances and realized we had came in UNDER budget last month even though my credit card was higher than normal.I called my GI about needing my biologic prescription refilled ( I have enough to go a couple months since I as sick)and that my insurance will probably request preauthorization again. I will see him next week to talk about whether I should stay at the same dosage or change. Hubby called the one utility about an over charge and got that corrected. I am glad I caught  it before the automatic payment went out.

I decorated the laundry room, hall, both bathrooms, and bedroom for Christmas. I found the Christmas cards so I can get those done.  I still have to clean the basement to move the black frig down so we can put the tree in the front room. That is the job for tomorrow as Sunday is suppose to be decent and dry and that will be good for moving it. I still have to decorate the mudroom, front room, dining room, and kitchen. I would like something for the kitchen porch and the deck. I need to finish the swags for the fence line at the driveway from the branches Hubby cut off the Christmas trees. I found the wire for that today. Hubby said he was putting the lights on the outside tree on Sunday.
Guess that is fair as I do the inside tree.

Dec 5th
Bfast was the left over egg/potatoes and lunch was cheese crackers and apples.
I cleaned part of the basement for the frig to go down. Found 5 packages of paper plates. Some will go to the reunion as we are the ones that provide the paper goods for the family reunion in Sept. I definitely do NOT need more. I also found paper napkins I never buy as we use cloth. Must have been in a box that came from Mother as she was the only I know of that bought paper napkins. Hubby found a very small salt and pepper shaker ... yep stuff from Mother. I was looking for a salt shaker so I wouldn't have to buy a sea salt grinder as I found fine ground sea salt at the discount store  last month.
When carrying out a cabinet that was falling apart and taking up the outside ramp from the basement, I caught the top of the cabinet on the roof (very low roof) and bashed my mouth and gave myself whip lash. I am thankful I did not break my front teeth or make them loose. I iced it so not to get a fat lip and to help with the bleeding. Went from having a sinus headache to a migraine within minutes. Still thankful that is all I got. Hubby did go down and carry out the last part of the cabinet.
We had freezer meal... it wasn't sweet potatoes but home fries, bread shrimp and breaded chicken strips. I used the air fryer for all of it since there was not much of any of it. Added green beans ,yogurt with the last of some cherry pie filling and a topping of grape nuts on it. Hubby is going out of state for the day with a friend so I am on my own for meals tomorrow.

Dec 6th
St Nick's day.Hubby left at 4 am to go out of state with a friend. They are going to go visit another friend in Illinois and do a drop off for one person and a pick up for another. I think half the conversations in this area are started with "I am going to ... do you need anything? That is actually a benefit as those that need something, share the cost of the trip. I grew up in a community that was the same. So to me this feels more like home. I realized this week the Hubby has finally adjusted to it. He was some where to get a tool for his truck replaced (out of his hobby money) and saw a set of tools E had been looking for under E's price point of $600. Not only below the price E was willing to pay it had a couple tools in the kit that E had mentioned he would like down the line but couldn't afford right now. The set was worth over $1000 but on sale for $200. A new style is coming out in Jan.Hubby put in on his credit card and brought it home. He took it over to E and A business yesterday afternoon,E's dad was there also. They were so excited and thankful.Hubby told them he put it on his credit card and the payment wouldn't be due until next month so they had time to pay it back. When E got done with chores last night he brought the money over. He told Hubby all three of them cried after he left because it was going to cut their time with labor in half and for an ENGLISHER to be so thoughtful of them was just something that did not happen much if at all. We do see that often Englishers try to take advantage of them.
Today's meals are oatmeal for bfast, leftover steak fries and leftover breaded chicken strips for lunch, ramen noodles with mushrooms and garlic for dinner since I am on my own. Hubby had banana and granola bars for bfast before he left. His friend brought homemade cookies for a morning snack. They will stop for lunch and dinner. Hubby said if he was hungry when he got home he could have summer sausage,cheese and crackers.

Dec 7th
the menu for this week was a bust. Hubby has only been home at meal times a couple days. Today was another time, he had to leave early because he brought back a saw for the saw mill (cuts logs into lumber) since it was dark when he got home he didn't drop it off. SO off he went , got that done, did the hauling he was scheduled to haul and was home by noon. He was given lunch since they thought he would be late. I had eggs. Within an hour our friends were calling as they needed help patrolling the Christmas parade where we used to live. Hubby went but I stayed home. I already am achy and do not want to walk 3 mile in the dark cold weather. I had a bowl of cold cereal for dinner. Finished up that box. Hubby is moving the refrigerator from the front room (finally) to the basement tomorrow so I moved all the butter I have bought so far to the barn deep freezer and some of the things I use all the time to the kitchen frig. I will be walking down the stairs daily to the basement to get food from the pantry and the 2 other refrigerators. I do not count on the old one to hold anything for any time as it has broke down more than once and would have been gone if I had any say about it. It's good for carrots, cabbage, celery , that type of stuff.
I washed bed linen and throw blankets today after I did the laundry. Was cold but nice sunshine and breeze to help things dry. Only  had to run the dryer for 20 minutes to finish the comforter as I have no place to put it to finish drying. I hope the weather holds tomorrow as I have 5 more blankets and 1 set of sheets to wash yet even though it will be the day of rest.

Tomorrow we go to the store for house and then later this week I will go for what I need for the two dishes we are taking to the Christmas party that we got invited to yesterday. I have what I need for the one. But the other one is cauliflower dressing since several at this party don't eat grains due to their diabetes.