6/27/2022 Weekly Meal Plan

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgSummer break is here! We’ve got all sorts of adventures planned, you can check out some of our adventures here.

Summer school started, and I’m back on campus helping teachers and kiddos for the next month.

We went to Knott’s Berry Farm over the weekend and had a really fun time.

I did no meal planning over the weekend- It was all hanging out with kiddos and playing/swimming. So tonight I’ll hit the store and grab some stuff (thankfully we don’t need too many items this week).

Our veggies and fruit are delivered by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $28, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $28. Seriously. It’s a deal. They email a preview of what will be in the boxes over the weekend, so I can start thinking about what I’d like to make.

With the increase in food costs, we are leaning more and more on our CSA box each week as the base of most of our meals.

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods. I received a few more coupons over the weekend, so I’ll visit Sprouts sometime this week to pick up the new foods. I’m focusing on snacks and treats from Social Nature.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. Lately, the big kid has been digging protein shakes in the morning. This is his favorite kind. 

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. This is really helpful for the summer when for some reason, kids are starving all the time. The kids get free lunch at summer school too!

Dinner: We finished our last Dream Dinner last week! I’ll be ordering more next month once the new menu comes out. I’m trying to get us to eat together as a family more often and get the kids into eating more fruits and veg, so you’ll notice that our meals are pretty simple this week.

  • Monday: Nuggets, fruit (apples or oranges), chips or crackers
  • Tuesday: Meatloaf sandwiches, salad, fruit
  • Wednesday:  Sonoma Grilled Steaks, Roasted broccoli
  • Thursday: Protein shakes and fruit
  • Friday: Takeout night!
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday:  Peach Bourbon Chicken with Almond Green Beans

6/24/2022 Friday Freebies and Deals!

It was a week of frugal fun!

We swam, we built legos,  went to the zoo, the kids redeemed their Pizza Book It coupons for June, and had tiny pizzas! If you are looking for some frugal adventures for this summer, check out this post.

There are so many awesome freebies and deals this week, and the weather this weekend is supposed to be AWESOME (AND WARM) here in San Diego.

Mask Mandates are changing constantly in California and can vary by city and county, so please do your part if you are going to any in-person freebies.

2022 Birthday Freebies are here!

Freebies:

Free Products from Influenster
Free Discover the Beauty in Wetands Book Cover
Free Box of JonnyPops Popsicles Product
Free Old Spice Body Wash at Walmart
Free Year of AAA Membership for T-Mobile Customers
Free Discover Pen, Nail File, Decals & More
Free RowdyPower Burn Energy Drink
Free Constellation Viewer from Home Depot
Free Star Collection Bookmark
Free Baby Samples & Full Sized Products from Amazon
Free Best Nest Wellness & Munchkin Mom & Baby Products
Free Beard Wash, Balm, Beard Oil & More
Free Beckon Lactose-Free Ice Cream Pints
Free Bookmarks, Posters, Activity Sheets & More
Free Vegan Wonder Cookies Sample
Free PediaSure 6-Pack or Shake Mix Coupon
Free Pint of Wildgood Ice Cream
Free CandyCan Sample Pack
Free Lane Bryant Gift Card Giveaway
Free Dr. Brandt Skincare Products
Free NFL Fan Packs
Free pH Testing Strips for Women
Free Facial Wash, Body Soap or Balm
Free Humblemaker Coffee after Rebate
Free Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almondmilk After Rebate
Free Night Cream & Micropolish or Face Oil & Clay Mask
Free Sample of Zignature Dog Food
Free Sample of Cascade Platinum Dishwasher Pacs
Free 256GB SSD at Micro Center
Free Crayola Summer Coloring Pages
Free Car Mechanic Simulator 2018 PC Game
30 Free Lactaid Care Club Points
Watch The Princess Bride for Free
Free Fall Guys for Xbox
25 Free Disney Movie Insiders Points

Deals

Cuisinart 17-PC Artiste Knife Block Set ONLY $49.99 (Reg $130)
Morphe 35T Sweetest Tea Artistry Palette ONLY $16.80 (Reg $28)
Cooks 30-Pc Nonstick Cookware Set ONLY $71.99 (Reg $180)
Kid Toddler Pillowcase 2 Pack ONLY $7.99 (Reg $20)
Up to 70% Off at Banana Republic Factory
NuWave 14-Qt Air Fryer ONLY $39.99 (reg $80-140)
Cooks 1.5 Quart Slow Cooker ONLY $11.69 at JCPenney (Reg $22)
Swing Hammock Chair ONLY $48.99 (Reg $130)
Kids Pajamas Only $3 Shipped at Walmart
5-in-1 Sport Center Game System ONLY $25 (Reg $49)
Intex 10ft x 30in Inflatable Pool ONLY $49.99 (Reg $100)
Save 50% on Select Bathroom Decor at Target
Insignia 24-Inch Fire TV ONLY $89.99 (Reg. $170)
LOL Surprise OMG Dance Virtuelle Fashion Doll $13.97 (Reg. $26)
70% Off PicassoTiles Magnetic Building Blocks + Extra 15% Off

Recipe: Making Pie Crust!

Pie crust is easy to make. It has few ingredients, but there is some finesse involved in making a light, flaky pie crust.

There are no special tools needed, but a pastry cutter is nice (You can use a whisk instead, or your bare hands).

This is the pie crust recipe that I use. I know it by heart and I make it frequently. It’s great for sweet pies like pumpkin, or savory meat pies like chicken pot pie (that recipe is coming later this week).

This recipe makes 1 pie crust for an 8 or 9-inch pie plate, if you need two (top and bottom), double it.

Pie Crust

Ingredients

  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon AP Flour
  • 1/3 cup shortening OR unsalted butter -It needs to be cold butter or room temp shortening. This part is SUPER IMPORTANT.
  • 1/4 cup ice-cold water (You may need an extra tablespoon or so if the weather is very dry).

 

Directions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, add flour and fat.
  2. Using a whisk, pastry cutter, or your hands, mix flour and fat until incorporated into little (pea-sized or smaller) pieces.
  3. Slowly add water and combine to form a large dough ball. Wrap the dough ball in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. This will help ensure that your crust is flaky.
  4. Flour a clean, flat surface, and roll the dough out into a large circle. Do not over roll it or manhandle the dough- this will make it heavy and flat.
  5. If you are making a bottom crust, press it into a pie plate, and trim the edges.
  6. Pierce the bottom of the crust with a fork a few times to keep it from bubbling.
  7. If you are making a pie that will be filled and baked again like pumpkin or quiche, bake at 350 for 40-45 minutes. Cool completely before filling and baking a second time.
  8. If you will be using the pie crust as a top only (no bottom crust), once the crust is rolled out, fill your baking dish with whatever you are cooking, top it with the uncooked crust, pierce it a few times (to vent the steam), and bake per the directions of the recipe.

Substitutions:

If you are vegan, use shortening. Do not use spread/oleo/margarine.  They contain water and will make your crust turn out funky. Butter flavored shortening is great.

If you are gluten free, use 1 for 1 AP flour.

Talk Back: What kind of pie do you like?

Dream Dinners: Kick Off Summer with a June Meal Bundle!

It’s that time again! Time for a Dream Dinners Bundle Sale!

This deal is only good through Friday, June 24th at 9am, so if you are interested, please your order ASAP.

This bundle is great! You will get eight medium-size meals from the June menu for just $190!

 

The June Mini Bundle includes:

  1. Texas Roadhouse Burger
  2. Backyard BBQ Chicken with Corn Medley
  3. Summer Grilled Pesto Chicken Pizzas
  4. Sonoma Grilled Steaks
  5. Al Pastor Pork Street Tacos
  6. Buffalo Ranch Chicken with Summer Grilled Vegetables
  7. Summer Shrimp Boil
  8. Peach Bourbon Chicken with Almond Green Beans

A Medium Meal feeds 2-3 adults (honestly, it’s usually 3+ in our house), so you’ll be getting 16-24 restaurant-quality meals for $190!

Our local store here in East County is La Mesa, run by Marsi and her friendly staff! Store Email: lamesaca@dreamdinners.com  Store Phone Number: 619-460-6800.

6/20/2022 Weekly Meal Plan

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgSummer break is here! We’ve got all sorts of adventures planned, you can check out some of our adventures here.

We hit up the library last week, and we’ve got stacks of books to work through this week. In addition, I think we may try to visit night time zoo this week (we have zoo passes), and maybe the Natural History Museum (we got free passes from the summer reading program at the library). There will be pics on my Instagram feed.

I did a bunch of meal prep for the week yesterday afternoon: Roasted veggies, and chopped up fruit (including a seedless watermelon), and I did a slight reorganization of the pantry.

And the big kid decided that maybe he wants to try meat after being a vegetarian for 6-ish years. So, we are slowly trying to introduce meat back into his diet. I’ve planned meals this week that have some meat but also allow him to eat semi-vegetarian if he wants.

Our veggies and fruit are delivered by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $28, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $28. Seriously. It’s a deal. They email a preview of what will be in the boxes over the weekend, so I can start thinking about what I’d like to make.

With the increase in food costs, we are leaning more and more on our CSA box each week as the base of most of our meals.

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods. I received a few more coupons over the weekend, so I’ll visit Sprouts sometime this week to pick up the new foods. I’m focusing on snacks and treats from Social Nature.

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. Lately, the big kid has been digging protein shakes in the morning. This is his favorite kind. 

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. This is really helpful for the summer when for some reason, kids are starving all the time. We’ll be hitting up the free lunch sites several times a week over the summer.

Dinner: We finished our last Dream Dinner last week! I’ll be ordering more next month once the new menu comes out. I’m trying to get us to eat together as a family more often and get the kids into eating more fruits and veg, so you’ll notice that our meals are pretty simple this week.

  • Monday: Nuggets, fruit (grapes, watermelon, strawberries), chips or crackers
  • Tuesday: Baked Chicken parm, served with pasta and red sauce, roasted veggies
  • Wednesday: Bean, Rice, and veggie bowls, and cheese quesadillas
  • Thursday: Protein shakes and fruit
  • Friday: Takeout night!
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday: Pancakes, eggs, and fruit

Dream Dinners: Earn Free Dinners & Special Offer for your Friends!

Dream Dinners in La Mesa has a new Meal Prep Workshop program.  This is an exciting new twist on the in-store party and it’s a great opportunity for you to introduce your friends to Dream Dinners and earn fun rewards!

Here’s how it works:
As the host, you attend the workshop for free! You also have the opportunity to earn up to $75 in host rewards!

Your friends pay $50 to attend and learn about Dream Dinners. This includes three pre-prepped medium-size meals, and everyone will get to assemble the Campfire Cobbler Trio, at this private, in-store event with your friends. They’ll enjoy delicious samples of our food. They also have some exciting perks for them if they place an order at the workshop!

Call/Text 619-460-6800 to learn more and schedule your event!
If you’ve never tried Dream Dinners, it is a great meal prep company with locations all over the US. I love Marsi and her staff at the La Mesa Location. When compared to other meal prep/meal plan programs, the prices and freshness are out of this world. For more about why Dream Dinners is tops in my book, check out this post.

Introducing Ripple Street’s NEW Loyalty Program!

Ripple Street, formerly House Party, has announced a new  Loyalty Program.

The Ripple Street Loyalty Program is where engaged and passionate community members can get more out of their experience with Ripple Street. Ripple Street has seen all the great stuff you do for our brands, and now through our Loyalty Program, they track your Ripple Street event and activity progress while you earn fun rewards along the way and achieve tiers of status to unlock exclusive community perks.

To get started, click here.

 

New PinchMe Samples Drop June 21, 2022

Sample Tuesday is Coming on 6/21/2022- Mark your calendars, set an alarm on your phone!

Don’t have any idea what I am talking about? PinchMe! Join PINCHme and receive free samples that you can provide feedback on.

PinchMe is awesome! Once you are signed up, they will email you reminders when new samples are about to drop, and remind you when it’s time to leave feedback.

Answer a series of questions about your household and shopping habits in the Member Profile. PinchMe learns what you like and offer samples just for you.

Once you’ve had a chance to try the samples, complete a short feedback survey to tell PinchMe what you think of the samples.

I get PinchMe samples every month. Here is what arrived at the end of June for the June 2021 boxes. The One Bar was really good.

What are you waiting for? Sign up here and get on the free sample bandwagon! I’ve gotten all kinds of awesome sample/trial size items, as well as full-sized items to try out from PinchMe!

6/13/2022 Weekly Meal Plan

0a5e9dab796cea8a07eabe4eb4795b9e.jpgSummer break is here! We’ve got all sorts of adventures planned, you can check out some of our adventures here.

We’re headed to the library in Santee today to get started on our summer reading journey.

I did some meal prep yesterday (cooking veggies and chopping up fruit). This week we’re taking a hiatus from our CSA box to use up all of the produce that we have in the fridge/freezer.

Our veggies and fruit are delivered by Yasukochi Family Farms CSA. For $28, it’s a great deal. I don’t have to pick anything, go to the store, or carry it upstairs. I can’t go to the store and get the same amount we get weekly for $28. Seriously. It’s a deal. They email a preview of what will be in the boxes over the weekend, so I can start thinking about what I’d like to make.

With the increase in food costs, we are leaning more and more on our CSA box each week as the base of most of our meals.

We’ve been trying a lot of new foods lately, thanks to the really great freebies from Social Nature lately too. It’s fun to try new foods. On Friday night I ran to Sprouts and picked up the monthly freebies, and redeemed all of the Social Nature Coupons I had in my wallet. We’ve got all kinds of yummy snacks and treats!

For those of you that are new to meal planning, I’ve got an easy 101 style post here with super easy tips and steps. After you get that down, here is info about batch or freezer cooking.

I’ve gotten a pretty good inventory of the pantry, freezer, and fridge done (I try to update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste.

I only post our dinner plans for the week, because our other meals are usually the same each day.

Breakfast: Coffee with 1/2 and 1/2  for me, and pancakes or something along those lines for the kids. They are also into fruit and bagels for breakfast. Lately, the big kid has been digging protein shakes in the morning. This is his favorite kind. 

Lunch: I have a plastic tote in the cupboard full of self-serve snacks. I buy treats and snacks in bulk and fill up snack-sized zip-top bags. This is really helpful for the summer when for some reason, kids are starving all the time. We’ll be hitting up the free lunch sites several times a week over the sum

Dinner: We’re still working our way through our Dream Dinners order for the month, and I’ve got two meals ready for this week.

  • Monday: Meat Loaf, Green Beans, mashed potatoes
  • Tuesday: Lasagna, roasted veggies, sliced strawberries
  • Wednesday: Chicken Sandwiches, fruit salad
  • Thursday: Breakfast for dinner- Pancakes, protein shakes, fruit salad
  • Friday: Takeout night!
  • Saturday:  Leftovers
  • Sunday: 

Score a Free Taco at Rubio’s!

Thanks to the Padres, we all can score a free taco today at Rubio’s! Any time the Pad’s steal a base at a home game, we win! Valid for 1 a la carte taco with any purchase. Limit 1 per person/account. Valid in the following counties: San Diego, Orange, Los Angeles, and the Inland Empire. Check with your local Rubio’s to verify participation.

Not valid on 3rd party apps. When ordering through the Rubio’s App, use coupon code: GOPADRES

What kind of taco are you getting?