August 28 grocery shop

Today’s grocery shop actually took place over a couple of days.

Shop N Save, 8/26:


Food Fantasies: (organic cream, milk, eggs)


Aldi: (non-organic mozzarella, yogurt, pumpkin spice creamer, lunch meat, pepperoni, butter)



Saturday: lovely potluck dinner for Mom’s 80th birthday. We brought Greek Salad and Lemon Jello Cake. SIL Sue brought marinated flank steak, summer squash casserole, fresh green bean and a couple of bottles of really good wine. Younger brother and SIL to be (as of 10/15/11) cleaned the house and put out appetizers: garlic humus and crackers, crudities and dip, they also brought some yummy mediterranean liquor–it tasted like a very sophisticated version of NyQuil. A dear friend of mom brought some homemade toffee and caramels. Mom shared the toffee, but would not share the caramels. 🙂 The evening would have been perfect if I had not left my purse behind. Figured it out when we were 30 minutes away, returned to get it and got home just barely before midnight.

Sunday: Turkey sausages, summer squash casserole, sliced Kiwi.

Monday: Cheese Ravioli, Orange Sunshine (or Orange glop as my kids call it–“sunshine” refers to the flavor, “glop” refers to the texture.)

Tuesday: sautéed Tilapia in garlic and lemon juice, buttermilk biscuits, steamed mixed vegetables.

Wednesday: Just me–leftovers.

Thursday: Homemade Pepperoni Pizza.

Be sure and watch this site September 11-17th. We are following the San Francisco Food Pantry Challenge of living on less that the food stamp allowance of $4.72/day per person or $132.16 for the week for all four of us. Our blog will be linked to their website, and we will post daily photos of what we have spent and what we have cooked and are eating.

Should be great fun. Please follow along.

Enough Rest

About eight years ago, my work schedule changed and for the first time in about 20 years, I had weekends with no work or child care responsibilities.

To celebrate, my then boyfriend took me to his home in a beautiful rural setting and asked me how I wanted to spend my first free weekend. I told him the most decadent things I could think of–I wanted to sleep till noon and have dessert for breakfast. And I did. I slept till 12:15pm to be exact. I didn’t really believe that I could sleep so long, but my exhausted body seemed to know such an opportunity would not occur again soon and made use of every minute. My boyfriend led me, still in my jammies, to a balcony overlooking the Sangamon River, near where a young Abe Lincoln got his flat-boat stuck on a shoal, and fed me a breakfast of triple layer chocolate cake, pound cake with lemon curd and strawberry shortcake. I remember laughing out loud for the wickedness of it.

It was an important lesson for me in learning joyfulness.

Yes, goals are important. Yes, To-Do lists and keeping your word are important. Yes, a life that is self-centered is barren.

But when you are caregiver to multiple other humans, sometimes you have to put care of yourself first.

Last pay period I had 33 hours of overtime. Then I went on a trip to visit my beloved oldest son and daughter-in-law and took three teenagers along for the ride. I got back to work, to a lot of stuff that didn’t get done while I was away (you know how that is…) I was tired.

So despite the fact that my To-Do list is as full as ever, I took the day off. (Well, sorta…I still did three loads of laundry, bought groceries, minor paperwork and some Goodwill organizing.)  But, I slept in till 9:30am. (needed as I was at a kid’s activity fundraiser till midnight last night.) I took a nap at noon and another one at 2pm.  I read a book from the library and played solitaire on the computer. And it felt really, really good.

If I won the lottery, I wouldn’t change my life a bit….except maybe take a month off to sleep in and eat dessert for breakfast. Oh, and replace the windows in the house.

August 17 Grocery Shop

We are back from vacation, a trip to visit my oldest son and his wife in Tennessee. The week before that, the younger kids were with their dad for a week, so I have gotten off pretty light in the grocery department. And the pantry was bare when we got home last night. So today, I restocked and spent $138.60. Total grocery costs for the month so far: $237.51. Eat out costs so far $69.45. That does not include food eaten out on our trip, those are labeled vacation costs in the budget.

Organics: milk, eggs, coffee, rump roast.

Non-organic dairy: yogurt and cheese.

Aldi groceries

More non-organic dairy and meat: yogurt, string cheese, roast beef slices for sandwiches and one lone bacon wrapped fillet, which I ate for dinner tonight.

Menus for the week:

Thursday: Cheese ravioli and fresh fruit

Friday-Sunday: kids at their dad’s house

Monday: Stew made w/ organic roast, biscuits

Tuesday: Tilapia, steamed mixed vegetables

Wednesday: leftovers

Thursday: Quiche, romaine salad, fresh fruit

Friday: Beef and egg noodles (made w/ remainder of organic roast) steamed green beans.

Another Enough Mommy Moment

Middle son is hanging out with me in the living room, just back from a friend’s house. We are chatting about our days. We can hear a fight breaking out in the kitchen between beloved daughter and youngest son over the computer.

I tell middle son, “When I was younger, my deepest wish was to create a happy family.”

There is more squabbling in the kitchen.

Middle son replies, “What makes you think you haven’t?”