Wednesday, June 30, 2010


I finally got my copy of "Eat this not that" by David Zinczenko with Matt Goulding. It is the 2009 copy, The new 2010 copy is available on the website . Just from reading this book over the last few days I plan on purchasing quite a few of their books. These books are awsome if you are somewhat dense on foods like I am. My oldest and I took this book to the grocery store last night with us, it has a huge section that shows actual pictures of products with nutritional info, one page eat this the other instead of this. A couple of things I learned that were quite scary to me were in the very back of the book it is an additive glossary. One that just made me sick was:

Cochineal Extract or Carmine-a pigment extracted from the dried eggs and bodies of the female Dactylopius coccus, a beetlelike insect that preys on cactus plants. It is added to food for its dark crimson color. Found in - Artificial crabmeat, fruit juices, frozen fruit snacks, candy and yogurt. What you need to know- Carmine is the refined coloring, while cocineal extract is compromised of about 90% insect-body fragments. Although the FDA receives fewer adverse reaction reports each year, some organizations are asking for a mandatory warning label to accompany cohineal colored foods. Vegetarians, they say, should be forewarned about the insect juices.

Ok , this makes me nauseous.

Some other quick facts from the book is a section called the wrong kind of protein.
Bonus ingredients the FDA allows in foods.
Canned pineapple-20% moldy fruit
Canned tomatoes- 5 fly eggs or 2 maggots per 500 grams
Frozen broccoli- 60 mites per 100 grams
Ground cinnamon- 400 insect fragments and 11 rodent hairs per 50 grams
Peanut butter- 30 insect fragments or 1 rodent hair per 100 grams
Popcorn- 1 rodent pellet in one sample or 2 rodent hairs per pound.
Potato chips, 6 percent rotten potatoes.

If you are trying to eat more healthy or wanting to avoid these horrible things I suggest you read this book. Their website has some great information too. This book really changed the way we shopped last night. Hope this helps with finding good healthy food for your family. I am on a mission to feed non gmo organic healthy non insect juice food to my family. And the good news is that there are a ton of websites to print coupons for these items that are in the grocery store. Just do a google search for organic printable coupons. Good luck all, Michelle

Monday, June 28, 2010

Cleaning my (lifes) house

Although not quite to the point of "nesting" quite yet with this prenancy, with all that has been going on I have had a deep need to clean things out. Get a grip on things a bit. I started with the inside which included rearranging and cleaning stuff out and getting rid of things that were cluttering up my house and mind. I then started on the outside of the house getting that in shape ( still doing that one ). I am slowly starting to feel better in the house not so much going on. I have been working hard with the twins and the baby getting them ready for the baby to come. Learning to be quieter and being respectful of a new baby. The are doing very well at that. At this point I am feeling fairly well and strong I hope it continues. Have a great week all I plan on it!!! Michelle

Sunday, June 27, 2010

They learn so quickly!!!

The 2 year old has just recently learned to say I love you too. Even quicker he learned that whenever he is naughty he immediatley says in the stinkin cutest squeaky voice ever, I looooove uuuu tooooo. Little bugger is so cute is real hard to stay angry at something so cute. Just had to share, Have a great Sunday evening all Michelle

Monday, June 21, 2010

Lowering the budget further

We did so well this past two weeks I have decided to lower the food budget even lower. I am going to lower it $50 each paycheck and see how we do. I found a great list by green cheapskate on the 50 best foods for under $1 a lb.

50 foods under or around $1 a lb

•Apples - One a day keeps the cheapskate away.
•Asparagus - HUGE store special at 99 cents a pound during Easter week. I bought 10 pounds, blanched it, and then froze it.
•Bananas - Potassium for pennies.
•Barley - A tasty alternative to rice and potatoes.
•Beans - Canned or dried. Kidney, pinto, navy, black, red, and many more.
•Bok choy - Steam and serve with a little soy sauce.
•Broccoli - Yes, a store special. Usually closer to $2 per pound.
•Bulgar wheat - Try it in pilaf or a tabouleh salad.
•Cabbage - Green and red. I like mine fried.
•Cantaloupe - No, sorry, I can't; I'm already married.
•Carrots - Raw or steamed. Rich in carotenes, a healthy antioxidant.
•Celery - Stir-fry it for a change.
•Chicken - Whole or various parts, on sale.
•Chickpeas - AKA garbanzo beans -- mash 'em up as a healthy sandwich spread.
•Cornmeal - "Polenta" is all the rage these days, but I loved it 40 years ago when Mom called it "cornmeal mush."
•Cucumbers - Try peeling, seeding, and steaming with a little butter and salt.
•Daikon radish - My new favorite raw veggie.
•Eggs - Don't overdo them, but eggs provide high quality protein and still cost about $1 per pound. (Plus, there are many eggscellent things you can do with the shells.)
•Green beans - Frozen, but fresh are sometimes on sale for under $1 a pound in-season.
•Greens - Kale, mustard, turnip, and collard greens are rich in vitamins and a good source of fiber. Here's how I cook 'em.
•Grapes - Store special at 99 cents a pound.
•Grapefruit - Bake with a little brown sugar on top for a healthy dessert.
•Lentils - Perhaps the perfect food -- healthy, cheap, and versatile. Think soups, salads, sandwich spreads -- and those are only some of the "s" possibilities.
•Liver - Chicken livers usually cost under $1 a pound, and sometimes beef and pork liver can be found in the DMZ ("Dollar Maximum Zone").
•Mangoes - High in fiber and vitamins A, B6, and C.
•Milk - Yep, on a per-pound basis, milk still costs well under $1 a pound.
•Napa cabbage - Delicious steamed or raw in a salad.
•Oatmeal - The good old-fashioned "slow cooking" kind ... that takes all of five minutes.
•Onions - Try baking them whole in a cream sauce.
•Oranges - Frequent sale price when in-season.
•Pasta - Store special at 89 cents a pound -- I nearly bought them out!
•Peanut butter - Special sale price, but stock up because it usually has a long shelf life.
•Pork - Inexpensive cuts of pork frequently go on sale for 99 cents per pound or less; sometimes even ham during the holidays.
•Potatoes - White and red, Baked, mashed, boiled, broiled, steamed.
•Pumpkin - Yes, you can eat the same ones you buy as holiday decorations, and they usually cost under 50 cents a pound.
•Rice - White for under $1 a pound; brown, a little more expensive but better for you.
•Rutabagas - Hated them as a kid; can't get enough of them now.
•Sour cream - 99 cents on sale, but long shelf life, so stock up. My cucumber awaits.
•Spinach - Frozen (but Popeye doesn't care).
•Split peas - Add a hambone and make the ultimate comfort soup. Try it in the crock-pot!
•Squash - Try baking acorn squash with a little brown sugar.
•Sweet corn - Canned or fresh on the cob, in-season. (Try this recipe for summer corn fritters.)
•Tomatoes - Canned are often better than fresh to use in cooking, and occasionally you can find fresh on sale for under a buck, in-season.
•Turkey - A popular bargain-priced, loss-leader around the holidays -- buy an extra bird and freeze it for later.
•Turnips - Make me think of my grandparents, who always grew them.
•Watermelon - Whole, in-season melons can sometime cost less than 20 cents a pound if they're on sale and you find a big one.
•Wine - Well, at least the stuff I drink -- a 5-liter box (approximately 11 pounds) for about 10 bucks, on sale. (BTW, the beer I drink is even less expensive per pound.)
•Yams/sweet potatoes - One of the healthiest foods you can eat, and usually available year-round for under $1 a pound.
•Yogurt - 8-ounce containers on sale, two for $1.
•Zucchini - OK, they're a type of squash (above). But I love them so much they deserve their own place on the list. Plus they look great in pantyhose.

I have to be honest we have never tried some of these veggies but I plan on trying one of them atleast each paycheck. Not only will it save us money but will be tons healthier for us. I thought it would be alot harder to still stockpile cutting the budget so much but by incorporating more veggies and fruits in the diet, I have some leftover to make other things like freezer jams or drying veggies in my dehydrator for later use. I have yet to take on the bean challenge, which is on my to do list this next 2 week period. I have a ton of beans and lentils (dry) which I am going to make up in freezer portions. Just need to gather a few more facts on preparing them.
I am also going to start in August making my own baby food and freezing. I have huge lists I want to take on this summmer, Making my own cloth diapers and mama cloths for after the baby gets here, Burp cloths etc. I have also made each of my children a baby quilt so need to get started on that too!!! Hope you are having a great first day of summer, Michelle

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

What is really in that food you eat!!!

These are some freaky facts about what is in some of the food you eat, The sand in the food and all the msg just freaks me out, Especially since MSG makes me sick. I put the books at the end on my check out list at the library, Eat this not that!! Happy reading Michelle

Friday, June 11, 2010

Ready for the squeeze

I spent the last few days working on my menu planning and got it all done, Made up my lists and headed out. First I did coupon shopping. My coupon shopping as hard as it was not to buy other things I had coupons for were just for things that were in my menu plan. My total started at $179 and ended after coupons at $107. These inculded household things like 6 packs of huggies diapers on rollback for $8.99 with $3off coupons, 6 $2 off pampers wipes that were $.24 cents after my $2 off coupons and 3 huggies wipes that were $2.47 each with $2.50 off. 2 welch's grape juice bottles that were $3.62 with $2 off each bottle. Danino yogurt that were $2.06 with $1.50 off one.

My second trip was non coupon items. I have to do my shopping in 2 trips anyway each time, One for coupons and one for non coupons. Because it just takes too long and I usually have all the kids in tow and it just gets too much for them. My second trip, which had to include some things we needed like antifreeze for the car ( $12 ouch)Total was $124 and included family pack chicken, family pack ground chuck and family pack of steaks. So we were at $231. I then took $45 and went to the Thursday farmers market here in town and got 18 tomatoes which I made salsa with last night. 4 huge cantaloupes, 2 lbs green beans, 3 lbs snap peas, 1 bunch cilantro, 3 jalepenos, 1 head of cabbage ( I have been craving of all things coleslaw lol ), 2 bunches of broccoli, 4 bunches of super huge green onions ( the bulbs at the end are large enough to use as reg. onions), I also splurged on an Amish family selling cakes and breads ( The kids caught my eye as well as the breads) I bought 1 cinnamon bread and 1 peach cobbler bread. I washed and soaked all the veggies in vinegar water and froze them in portions. So my shopping trip ended at $276 with a little extra for loss leaders over the next 2 weeks or milk.

It helped out so much preparing the meal plans and grocery list and sticking to it. I saved a bunch of money and have everything I need for the next two weeks meals, Breakfasts, Lunch and Dinners. I have made every Friday night pizza night so tonight is homemade pizza night, The best part being my son makes these so not much for me to do.

My salsa was simply tomatoes cilantro jalepenos green onions tops and bottoms salt and lime juice. I have never made salsa before so I just added stuff until everyone said it was awesome. I ended up with 8 quart jars. Now I just need to make the tortilla chips and we are set!!!! Have a great weekend all!!! Michelle

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Cutting back even farther

The railroad has decided to scale back. Hubby has been moved from this reg. job to one that pays $1000 a month less. It could only be a month until he gets his position back or it could be a year. You just never know with the railroad. His job is secure, But you just never know where they are going to place you or how long you will be there. Don't get me wrong, even with the pay cut we are still making good money, But we sure got used to that extra $1000. And with the new baby soon now was not the most opportune time to go down in pay.
Since we were living paycheck to paycheck with paying off debt. We still want to pay off our debt but have to scale back. First thing is going to be our food budget. I was spending $700 a month on food and household for the month. I am going to scale that back to $400 a month. With our stockpile and careful careful planning I have no doubt that I can do that. It is just going to be some extra work on my part. I was not a meal planner, But am learning now. I found a great freebie at for a meal planner with tips and hints and all the worksheets needed to do this right. I started the lesson last night to start next monday. I also have gotten a bit lazy the last few months with this pregnancy and need to get back on track with making my own bread(s). Since I went with disposable diapers with the baby ( which I regret) that is about $60 a month there. He is 2 1/2 and needs to be potty trained I have been lazy on this also. I have never been good at potty training little boys lol, But now I need to be. Since we are going with cloth again with the new baby that expense won't be needed. Since cutting out soda and coffee the last few months that has freed up quite a chunk of change there. We have lots of places we can cut, Just have to get it all worked out. I am not worried that we can do it, I just have to incorporate help. So family meeting is scheduled. My oldest daughter has moved back in with us for a few months. She wants to buy a house ( I totally support this at 19 years old). Plus this helps me out, she can help with the little ones when she is off work so I can get some stuff done I can't do with them.
Shaving $1000 a month of your budget is daunting, But I know it can be done. I just have to get creative. And we are fortunate that he still has a job as alot do not even have a job at all. So my next month of posts will be mainly deep cutting posts. Things I find to do that save here and there and stuff I find online. This first week will be the cut in groceries and household. The next week will be waste, uggghhh I know this is ugly I know we waste, or spend needlessly too much. Wish me luck. Michelle

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Bye Bye bad stuff

Well it has been 5 months since I gave up coffee and 2 months since I took everyone off of soda. I was not a huge soda drinker so It did not effect me as much as the older kids and hubby. The reason that I took them all off soda is because of hubby. He has been having horrible and I mean horrible stomach problems and digestive problems for months and months. I finally made him go to the doc and come to find out he had so much build up in his colon that he had a bacterial infection. He was a disgusting Coke drinker and I have been on him for years to cut down or cut it out. He averaged about 6 cans of coke a day and probably 2 32oz drinks while working. When the doc found that out she said quit the coke or die. He quit cold turkey and is doing good. He has not had one in over a month. We found some alternatives. He tried tea and that was just too drastic for him. So I made him sweet tea and I lessen the sugar in it each week. We also went with the flavored soda water when he needs something fizzy. He is getting more used to water as time goes by. I am so happy to be rid of these horrible drinks, The health benefits are amazing not to mention the financial. He also per doc had to give up fried foods. I don't fry here at home. And he was a bad bad fast food eater. Amazingly he gave that up too. He is feeling so much better for it.
Although I don't believe in the censorship that is going on around the country with the government getting involved in what we choose. Cutting out these things on your own and not buying them or giving them to your kids is a CHOICE you must make on your own and it is a good and smart choice. Try just cutting out one bad thing a month, Before you know it you won't even miss it, Or actually you will when you feel a 1000 times better. Have a healthy weekend all, Michelle

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Lucky #7 issssssssss

Baby # 7 is a BOY. My 5th boy, 4th in a row. We got the best ultrasound pics I have ever had, and our first DVD. It was so great to see the boys watch the video they just wanted to watch it over and over again. The girls were a bit disappointed but soon got over it. Boys are comfortable to me, I have had nothing but boys for so long that I am used to them lol. All in all everything is fine, Baby is doing great was moving all over during the ultrasound and baby measures at 19 weeks. Doc said he looked great!!! I have not been feeling well at all and my blood pressure getting high at times I was really worried but felt better today. Just wanted to let you all know and as soon as I can figure out my new scanner I will scan in the ultrasound pics for you to see. Have a great week all I know I will, Michelle