babyhood / home / IN MY KITCHEN

a run for my money

getting back in the alfresco routine

Well, I am officially three days into my grocery challenge and things are so far, so good. I'm sure it will get a lot more "creative" as the week wears on. Sunday night we had breakfast for dinner–eggs, some potatoes, bacon and I used some Bisquick baking mix to make some cinnamon swirly kind of biscuits. It is a riff off of something that the woman who cooks for my grandmother used to make. I've never officially asked for the recipe, but knowing her–there is bisquick involved.

I just mixed together bisquick and milk until I got a dough-like consistency. Then I made up a brown sugar-cinnamon filling, which I added some oats to this time, for something different. I rolled it out flat, added the filling and rolled it back up. and cut it into two-inch rolls. After it baked, I made a little confectioner sugar icing–which I'd leave off next time. But otherwise, yummy and good.

I think this week will be a good exercise for a number of reasons. I'm not looking to make this a habit–the skimping on groceries and fresh produce. This is just an exercise that I'm hoping will bring some new perspective.

Already I find myself watching portions and the "I can always go get more" mentality is quickly changing. We are so blessed, you know? To be able to have so many food resources at our fingertips. And I love the creativity that goes in to using what I have on hand. It stretches me. We'll see exactly how much it stretches me at the end of the week.

Thank you all for your thoughts and ideas and encouragement on this experiment. I'd love to hear from those of you that have decided to join in–hear how your week is going so far.

note to self:

Other random bits:

**I have a guest blog post over at the National Wildlife Federation's Green Hour blog. Go check it out, if you're looking for a simple way to get your kids outdoors.

**I've created an archive of my good things lists. It will always appear at the bottom of the list. I often find myself wishing I'd done this in the past, so I hope it will be helpful for all of you, too. If I found the good thing through someone else's blog, you'll notice a little "pop-up" that appears over the good thing, when you place your cursor over it. (did that make sense?)

**It's a new month over at habit, which means we have a new group of guests. Come by and see!

not to self:

**Several of you asked for the granola recipe I use. It is my grandmother's recipe and you can find it in this post. (I make a half recipe). It is really simple and easily customized to your tastes.

**My two year old is giving me a run for my money lately–in the form of telling me "nope" for everything I ask her to do, giving herself a mullet, and nakedness. In fact, I was lucky to find a picture to post with her somewhat clothed. I count it progress if I can keep her dressed through breakfast. It's going to be an interesting summer. (Thank goodness I believe that nakedness is the best technique for potty training! 🙂 And I'm going to have to figure out how to deal with the mullet later today.

getting back in the alfresco routine

Well, I am officially three days into my grocery challenge and things are so far, so good. I'm sure it will get a lot more "creative" as the week wears on. Sunday night we had breakfast for dinner–eggs, some potatoes, bacon and I used some Bisquick baking mix to make some cinnamon swirly kind of biscuits. It is a riff off of something that the woman who cooks for my grandmother used to make. I've never officially asked for the recipe, but knowing her–there is bisquick involved.

I just mixed together bisquick and milk until I got a dough-like consistency. Then I made up a brown sugar-cinnamon filling, which I added some oats to this time, for something different. I rolled it out flat, added the filling and rolled it back up. and cut it into two-inch rolls. After it baked, I made a little confectioner sugar icing–which I'd leave off next time. But otherwise, yummy and good.

I think this week will be a good exercise for a number of reasons. I'm not looking to make this a habit–the skimping on groceries and fresh produce. This is just an exercise that I'm hoping will bring some new perspective.

Already I find myself watching portions and the "I can always go get more" mentality is quickly changing. We are so blessed, you know? To be able to have so many food resources at our fingertips. And I love the creativity that goes in to using what I have on hand. It stretches me. We'll see exactly how much it stretches me at the end of the week.

Thank you all for your thoughts and ideas and encouragement on this experiment. I'd love to hear from those of you that have decided to join in–hear how your week is going so far.

note to self:

Other random bits:

**I have a guest blog post over at the National Wildlife Federation's Green Hour blog. Go check it out, if you're looking for a simple way to get your kids outdoors.

**I've created an archive of my good things lists. It will always appear at the bottom of the list. I often find myself wishing I'd done this in the past, so I hope it will be helpful for all of you, too. If I found the good thing through someone else's blog, you'll notice a little "pop-up" that appears over the good thing, when you place your cursor over it. (did that make sense?)

**It's a new month over at habit, which means we have a new group of guests. Come by and see!

not to self:

**Several of you asked for the granola recipe I use. It is my grandmother's recipe and you can find it in this post. (I make a half recipe). It is really simple and easily customized to your tastes.

**My two year old is giving me a run for my money lately–in the form of telling me "nope" for everything I ask her to do, giving herself a mullet, and nakedness. In fact, I was lucky to find a picture to post with her somewhat clothed. I count it progress if I can keep her dressed through breakfast. It's going to be an interesting summer. (Thank goodness I believe that nakedness is the best technique for potty training! 🙂 And I'm going to have to figure out how to deal with the mullet later today.

24 comments on “a run for my money”

  1. Elizabeth cracks me up.

    I just finished a bowl of your grandma’s granola recipe with some homemade yogurt–I make 1/5 of her recipe and store it in an old oatmeal container. With just two of us, that much lasts us a week, sometimes a week and a half, and then I make more! It’s so tasty and ridiculously easy. I’ve passed it on to others who now make it regularly, too 🙂

  2. I think if you can get the family around the table, and that table is outside like that (it looks so pretty out there, Molly), who will notice if you’re eating rice and beans again?I’m not going whole hog with you on this, but I’m trying this week. I think I’m going to have to buy some eggs at the farm tomorrow, and will probably end up with some carrots, too.But I think it’s a great idea for a couple of reasons, mostly to pay attention to how much we do have and don’t need, and to also clear some space in our cabinets after a long winter: make room for the fresher meals coming up now that its summer.Keep us posted,Molly!

  3. Whew! I admire the no groceries challenge! I’ve been trying harder to use what we have, but not buy so many pantry items ’cause I feel like they get lost in the black hole. Do you have a deep freeze? I’ve been wondering if that, too, would become a black hole or if I would really freeze veggies or make Erin’s freezer jelly.

  4. We have decided to join you in your grocery challenge! I wrote out a list of meals we could make, and astonishingly have enough food for at least two weeks of meals (not all the healthiest choices). So no grocery store for me either, except Milk…and I might cheat and buy an onion 😉 Ok Ok since Im being honest, mustard is BOGO this week so I will be getting that too 😉

  5. did you see rachel’s pasta dish with the italian sausage? i was wondering if you could riff on that with the deer sausage you have.our dinner sunday was in the spirit of your challenge – fatty and i had fried egg sandwiches with some bacon that was on hand and a salad with greens from last week’s csa. all in house, nothing bought. that is success for me. xo.

  6. Your idea struck a chord with me and I randomly decided to give it a try too. I bought 1 gallon of milk on Sunday. We’re members of a CSA, so we’ll end up with a bunch of greens and a dozen eggs on Friday. I’ve already found myself thinking that I need to run to the store to get something more than once, and I’m only on day 3. It’s a good mindfulness exercise. Thanks for the inspiration.

  7. I love breakfast for dinner!We managed to cut our milk consumption back so my order went from three gallons to one, plus the usual dozen eggs (we eat a LOT of eggs!). I’ve been using my dry goods up and avoiding a trip to the store by baking bread and making pizza dough (since we can throw leftover goodies on top), plus I inventoried the freezer so we could actually use up stuff.

    Since I’m not buying any produce the bountiful lettuce from our garden has come in really handy. Who knew that kids actually like salad?

    xo, Amanda @ kiddio

  8. Oh that little naked girl is just too cute. I think nakedness is just fine when you’re two though it does make going to the store a bit of a challenge. Good thing your not going this week!

  9. We have breakfast for dinner atleast twice a month!! I try to make homemade everything and its always fun for the kids! I really enjoy your blog, have a great week!

    BTW: i gave you an award on my blog!! 😀

  10. I’m so glad you’re joining in. And you are right, it really does make you mindful. I find myself being extremely frugal and thrifty with the things I do have on hand–trying to stretch and make them last all week.

  11. Amanda, I SO wish we’d had our garden tilled in time for lettuce. But we had such a wet spring, that it didn’t dry up enough to till until just a few weeks ago. I inventoried too–to get some ideas. It is amazing what i have stashed away in the deep, dark corners.

  12. i’ll have to look for it. Really, it’s only that me that gets squeamish about the deer sausage. Dan likes it and I know the kids won’t be able to tell the difference. And your sunday dinner sounds really, really good. xo

  13. Breakfast for dinner is a staple when I do the no-grocery thing. Also popular at our house to use up frozen veggies/pantry staples: fried rice, spinach quiche or curry, chili or tamale pie.

    I love trying people’s tried & true granola recipes. In the summer I make a lot of crock-pot granola.

  14. I am definitely joining in on this challenge…the pantry is too full to keep going shopping because it’s a ‘weekly’ thing. I’m getting creative tomorrow night with some veggies and barley. It all sounds good in my brain so we’ll see how it turns out. I’ll have to try that granola recipe. I’m always trying new ones…

  15. my two yr old, soon to be three is rarely clothed in the summer. and instead of saying nope, is into saying, you do it, not me. *cringe*

    as for the mullet, my niece did a number on her hair a couple years ago and headbands seemed to help : )

  16. Molls, this is something I try to do probably once a month because I sometimes find myself at the grocery store EVERYDAY. Which is ridiculous. Granted, we live so close that I can walk to my choice of 2, but still, it grates on my nerves when I am constantly there. So of course, this week I was participating along with you thinking, “this is nothing, I do this all the time” It’s how I take stock of what I need to get, use up the last of the frozen meats, etc.Then came Last Night. Choosing to grill the frozen pork chops that I thawed in cold water, I cut up the last of the potatoes for a tasty side and, with perfect timing, got the potatoes on the grill with the chops marinated to follow.When I went to check on everything, I noticed the grill had gone cold. Bummer. Out of propane. No biggie. Disappointing, but no big deal. Upstairs to the oven, pop everything in, feed the baby while grown up food is cooking, we’re all set. Then the oven started to smoke like a chimney spewing plastic burn pollution. Dinner was now impossible to complete.There I am, in the middle of Wegman’s searching for the pre-made delight I now deserve, as I have put in way too much effort to not have something tasty. And, I’m starving. Bring it home, everything is old and gross. Those lights do wonders in the store.Now, today, I know the chops will be delicious after marinating over night, but I just realized, my potatoes are still in the oven with the nastiness. Overnight. Sitting in stinky smoky grodiness.Off I go to the grocery store, for the SECOND DAY IN A ROW.

    grr.

  17. I’ve joined your grocery challenge too! I’m proud to say that our groceries were $57, the cheapest they’ve been all year. And we’ve been feasting on hotdogs this week. Thanks for the great idea, Molly!

  18. What perfect timing! There are several mysterious items in the back of the freezer which shall soon be deliciously transformed into cozy casseroles or savoury soups (it’s winter here in Oz). A hearty thanks to you & your culinary challenge. Hurrah!

    p.s another deer sausage idea: my mom used to make a semi-Dutch dish of white rice cooked in milk/cinnamon/raisins & then topped with a little brown sugar, served with buttered steamed cabbage & chunks of thick “ring bologna” (much like deer sausage) on the side. Somehow all the sweet/spicy/salty flavours worked really well together. Don’t fear the deer!

  19. I feel I make too much when I cook up all the chilis, taco meat, spaghetti sauce etc. I freeze half and then when I have spent my grocery ‘allowance’- I dig out all these goodies and make up a salad or throw some couscous with the meal. My son seems to love picking out a meal from the freezer- it is a quick and easy alternative and quicker the second time around.

  20. Well, I didn’t actually join in, but your suggestion sure did hit me right where I live. I get very irritated with myself for constantly buying food, and then picking something else up in lieu of preparing it. So wasteful (of space, if nothing else)! But – today was a good example of trying to boss myself around a little: after cooking up a whole mess o’chicken this morning, I’d completely lost my taste for it and decided we’d be ordering a pizza tonight. Then, my thrift kicked in and I remembered the loaf of bread in the freezer, so – voila! – we’ll be having chicken and artichoke panini instead. Saved money, and freed up a little chunk of premium freezer real estate. 🙂

    Now I’m starting to wonder if I should only buy produce at the store, and try to get a little more creative with the freezer and pantry stuff. It’s good to start fresh periodically, right? Anyway, thanks so much for the inspiration, and well done!

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