Friday, October 30, 2009

Menu for the week

Ribolita/salad
Pita pockets with roasted chicken, feta, tomatoes and taztziki sauce/orzo salad
Spaghetti with spinach pesto/salad
Jazzed up pizza (for our neighbourhood Halloween celebration - regular cheese/pepperoni pizza from Costco jazzed up with lot of veggies such as spinach, mushrooms, roasted red peppers and onions).


Breakdown:

Aldi/Kroger/Walmart $ 38
Costco $ 22
Super H $ 6


Have a great Halloween weekend!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Coop anyone?

I am considering joining a coop. I don't know much about it but I think the way it works is: You buy a package that contains fruits and vegetables that have been harvested in a local farm. This is good in all aspects because, we will be supporting local growers, our food will travel far less to get to our table and because these are small farms they use far less pesticides in their crops. The challenge lays on being creative and going with the flow when preparing the meals (you usually don't know what fruits and vegetables you will be getting until you get them). I want to at least give it a try...Stay tuned for an update.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

When you are unemployed...


This is what happens when a person with a mild case of OCD is unemployed. She decides to craft. I created these notebooks from recycled paper, card stock and leftover scrapbooking paper. I really like the way they turned out. I have scattered them all over the house to make lists and take notes...Trying to use all the paper that I have been saving. I got this idea from the Martha Stewart website...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Milestone


My little girl has lost her first tooth...She is so excited. She feels so grown up. The tooth is so teeny tiny. When she woke up in the morning she realized the tooth fairy had left her a whole dollar... She is growing so fast.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Girl's weekend out






I got together with my friends for a weekend away in the mountains. You read that right...I went on a weekend, away, sans kids to the mountains. Needless to say, I had a great time. There was a lot of talking, drinking, eating...What else can a girl ask for. I cannot tell you, these girls are so much fun and quite the cooks. We all pitched in for the food. My friend Kristen and I made a three bean chilli con carne+spring salad+corn bread for dinner on Friday. Really good if I may say so myself and perfect for the cold weather in the mountains. I got home on Sunday at around 3:00 PM. Mark and the kiddos went camping which we usually do as a family but this year coincided with my weekend away...There is always next spring for camping.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Menu of the week

Three bean chilli con carne
Roasted chicken/green beans/rice
Chicken quesadillas with spinach and mushroom/salad
Tortellini, spinach and tomato soup/salad

I put a lot of planing into my weekly meals. So much so that I go to the store (s) once and get it done all at once. I used to be the type that shopped without a planned menu so therefore I ended up going to the store more than once a week. I cannot tell you how much easier is now.

Breakdown:

Kroger/Aldi $45
Costco $20
Super H $6

PS. This weekend Mark is taking the kiddos camping, therefore, extra goodies (that we would not usually buy) were required for their little adventure!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Bartering







My friend Tara offered to make my boy a fire truck birthday cake for his 3rd birthday. In return, I offered to take some pictures of her beautiful family. You see, like me she is never in her pictures, so we helped each other by trading favors. So, we got the kiddos and the husband and headed to a park close by for a mini photo session. It was so much fun. I thought it would be more difficult but it turned out to be a great time. I hope you enjoy the pictures, Tara. I still think I got the best deal. The cake was amazing!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Through her eyes


Everytime I get my camera out little Miss V wants to take a picture. She is so funny and very artistic if I may add. Here is a little sample of her genious...Love that girl!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Picture day



School picture day is here. I decided to dress Miss V with the shirt I made for her. I figured this will be a good way to remember her at this age and the fact that I made the shirt is an added bonus. It started to cool down here in Georgia so long sleeves are becoming part of the wardrobe. My little man is also having pictures taken. He is looking oh so handsome if I may say so myself.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Scenes from the weekend









This weekend was packed full of fun activities. Saturday morning we went to M's school for their annual fall festival. The weather was so cold so hot chocolate was the right choice at the festival. The kids jumped on the inflatable castle, pet the farm animals, checked the old books and the hot rods, went to the garage sale and played with the pumpkins. I took a lot of pictures. After that Miss V and I went shopping for her Halloween outfit. Later in the evening our friends the Bowdens came over for a French dinner prepared by yours truly. On the menu: beef bourguignon, salad, french baguette, and pot de cremes for dessert and a lot of wine. It was a great time. Looking forward to our next outing together. Sunday we just relaxed around the house and played for a little bit in the backyard. I am trying to save Sundays to just do family stuff. No shopping, no major cooking or cleaning. Just relaxing at home with the kiddos.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Menu for the week

Pizza Margarita/salad
Beef Bourguignon/salad/crusty bread - Pot de cremes for dessert (dinner with friends)
Mexican vegetable soup/salad
Cannellini beans with Italian sausage/salad


I am going to start trying something new when I go to the store. I will be bringing cash to make my purchase. Basically, I will make my purchase with $60 - if I am under the budget no big deal. If I am going over it I will have to rethink what I am getting. So far, I have been more or less within my budget but I want to continue challenging myself and see if I can make it with less. All it takes is careful planning. What can I say? You can take the girl out of the accountant but you can't take the accountant out of the girl.


Breakdown for the week:

Kroger/Aldi $23
Costco $27
Walmart $6

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Fun fall activities









The kids did not have school on Friday. My friend Tracy and I decided to take the kids out for the day. Since the weather was so nice we thought it was time for some fall activities. So we packed a picnic basket and headed to Uncle Shucks (Uncle Sucks like little Kaitlyn calls it) for some fun with the kids. It was such a good time and the weather was wonderful. This was the first time I went to a corn maze, which it was an interesting experience. We got so lost and I had no idea how to get out. I just did what any reasonable person would have done...Busted out of the maze...I dont think I will be doing that again.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Daddy's old shirt=little girl's new dress




Ok, it is kind of crazy. I am officially addicted to sewing. I saw this dress on one of my daughter's friends and I thought to myself, I can totally do that! So I took some mental notes and started taking measuments and writing down patterns. Then I realized, I could totally use an old men's shirt to avoid making button holes (since still don't know how to make them). So here you have it. An old and stained shirt has been revived into a new and fresh dress for my daughter...What do you think? It was so easy it only took me couple of hours to make. I think I will have to raid my closet for some more old shirts to revive.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Weekend round up



Crazy busy weekend around here. We went to the Roswell youth parade. We had a great time. All kinds of fun activities for the family (including free food...Can't beat that). Mark and his karate group had a demonstration at the recreation center...Some self defense moves for kids and women, great stuff. We also got together with our neighbours for some football watching, wine drinking and great eating. That was a lot of fun. On Sunday some of my old friends from GT met up for dinner with Ada who is here vacationing from Hong Kong. We have not see her in 6 years. We had a great time catching up with her. I can't wait to see you again Ada...Maybe in Hong Kong?

Monday, October 12, 2009

Movies I've seen lately

When my friend Maria came to town we went to see "Julie and Julia". This movie, beside being very good had awaken the desire to learn more about French food...I will be getting my hands on Julia Child's Mastering the art of French cooking and get busy practicing...I want to make sure I have some dishes down before our trip to France next year...

Other movies I've seen: Running the Sahara a documentary about 3 runners that decided to run the Sahara for charity. It took them 111 days thru 7 countries and equivalent of 1.5 marathons per day...Crazy. They were raising money to build water pumps in the countries visited. The photography was amazing. Very entertaing movie for sure. I also saw Persepolis an animated film about the Iranian revolution thru the eyes of a girl...It was so engaging, so fascinating. A must see for sure.

Next movie on my list of must see: Capitalism, a love story...

Friday, October 9, 2009

Menu for the week

Stuffed eggplants Lebanese style/salad
Thai style chicken and ribs/rice/broccoli (dinner w/friends)
Black eyed peas soup/salad
Fusilli with roasted red pepper sauce/bread


Why do we eat beans so often? Well, there so many reasons why we love them: They are cheap, they are easy to prepare, they are full of protein, they are full of fiber, they freeze beautifully and most importantly, my kids LOVE them, I mean, love them a lot. It does not matter which ones: black, red, pinto, lentils, split, cannellini or black eyed peas they love them, which makes me a happy mama...


Here is the break down for this week:



Aldi/Kroger $32
Costco $12
Super H $22

Thursday, October 8, 2009

More skirts




Here are a couple more skirts I made for Miss V. I am really liking this. The more I sew the easier it gets. I feel like I can take on more difficult projects. I am thinking of making one with left over fabric...Like a quilt of sorts...I have this idea in my head but I am not sure if it will translate. I guess I won't know until I try. I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

This is what I did yesterday...

Mark and I went to see U2's 360 degrees tour yesterday. Needless to say it was incredible. Among all the amaizing songs they performed, here is one of my favorite from the show...

Pesto


Summer is over, the weather is turning and I still have a whole bunch of basil in my pots. I have decided to use it all up before it dies. I like to make pesto and freeze it to be used later in the winter... Isn't that a luxury? I love to be able to eat pesto in the middle of the winter... Anyway, here is the recipe I like to use (from Ina Garten):

Ingredients:
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup pignolis (pine nuts)
3 tablespoons chopped garlic (9 cloves)
5 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups good olive oil
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan

Directions:

Place the walnuts, pignolis, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process for 30 seconds. Add the basil leaves, salt, and pepper. With the processor running, slowly pour the olive oil into the bowl through the feed tube and process until the pesto is thoroughly pureed. Add the Parmesan and puree for a minute. Serve, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin film of olive oil on top.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Fall is in the air


Fall is here! Unlike other times I have decided to decorate for the fall (by decorating I mean hang a flag garland). I made this by using furniture cover samples that I got from my previous job. They were going to discard them so I decided to take them home and think of a project I could use them on...So here it is. What do you think? You like? I have separated the samples by color so I may do some more...Maybe for Christmas? I'll keep you posted.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Twister and Cup cake







Yet, another busy weekend in our house. Our friends (that happpen to be our neighbours) had a birthday party for their daugther. The theme: Ponies... So adorable. The kiddos had a blast. This is giving me ideas for a cowboy party for my little man...Maybe for next year?

Friday, October 2, 2009

Menu for the week

Here is our menu for this week:


Sesame scallops/salad with orange supreme
Tuscan soup with canellini beans/salad
Stuffed portobello mushrooms/salad
Stuffed chicken breasts with feta cheese/grilled zucchini and onions/rice


Have you noticed the trend? I make sure to have at least one vegetarian meal per week. Why, you ask? Well, this is one little contribution in my quest to be better to the environment since 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions come from livestock (more than from transportation)... Beside, it does not feel like a sacrifice at all since we love vegetables (and by "we" I mean Mark and I). I also want to make sure our kids grow to love them too...So, they have no choice here. If they don't like what I made they don't have to eat it...But, don't feel bad for them, they won't go hungry. You will be surprised...They may just have salad for dinner (which is usually the other choice). It is totally fine by me since I make it with a base of baby spinach, lots of...you guessed it, more vegetables and a home made dressing (I can't stand the bottled stuff). So there you have it...That is how we roll in the Sand's household.

PS. Here is what I spend this week:
Walmart/Kroger $35
Costco $8
Seper H $15

Thursday, October 1, 2009

First skirt



I have finished my very first skirt. I used some leftover fabric that my friend Debbie was kind enough to share with me, plus some I bought. Total cost: $4 for the trim in the bottom (which I also use for another project I will be blogging about later), thread and the fabric. I feel great about it. I did it all by myself. I realize it is not perfect but not too bad for the first one. I have been working on some other ones...I will be posting about those later.