12/2/19 Weekly Meal Plan

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We survived Thanksgiving break. Now it’s back to school, and back to work!

I did not go to the grocery store last week, other than to pick up milk. So last night I hit the store to stock up- The pantry was pretty bare. I ran out of flour- and for someone who bakes a lot.. well, I was pretty shocked.

This week we’re relying on a couple meal prepped items from the freezer, they come in so handy, especially on Mondays when we have so much going on. The big kid has a 2-day research study this week- he’s so excited!

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 update it after every shopping trip), so I’m able to plan meals and use up what we’ve got with little waste. If you are looking for kitchen inventory printable, I like the kitchen inventories here. They are great printables.

You may notice a lot of plant-based meals- We are not vegetarian (well, the big kid is, but the rest of us aren’t), but I am trying to get more veggies into our diet. I do a lot of cooking from scratch- I find it easier to get veggies and fruit into recipes that I can have 100% control over.

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 love the Kodiak Cakes Mix).  I also keep sandwich Ziploc bags of other frozen fruit on hand to make the kids smoothies when they request them (a few times per week). Berries, peaches, and mangos are pretty popular.

Lunches are leftovers, salads, or soups for me and Bitty. The big kid takes his lunch to school, but once in a while, I can convince him to buy his lunch.

For dinner, when we’ve got busy days (like Mondays), I’ll try and put something in the crockpot in the morning, or pull something I’ve already prepped out that can be quickly cooked. We’ve got a bunch of stuff in the freezer, as I’ve been portioning out 2-3 adult-sized entree portions from several meals a week and freezing them for later meals.

  • Monday: Chicken Fajita bowls with rice, beans, grilled onions and peppers
  • Tuesday: Baked Ziti & Steamed veggies
  • Wednesday:  Butter Chicken, jasmine rice, and green salad
  • Thursday:  Soup (we have a couple kinds in the freezer), Grilled cheese sandwiches, and apple crisp
  • Friday:  Breakfast for dinner: Corned Beef Hash, poached eggs, toast, and fruit
  • Saturday:  Pizza time (also salad will be served)
  • Sunday:  Pulled Pork, baked potatoes, steamed veggies

I had someone ask me how we always have enough of anything for leftovers. I always cook enough of the main dish for 6-8 servings, that way we have leftovers for lunches later in the week or leftover night. And really when you make stuff like soup, it’s hard to make a batch of soup that only feeds 4 people.

Talk Back: What are you planning to cook this week?

YMCA of San Diego County- Cyber Monday Deal!

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We love our local YMCA- They have great exercise classes, awesome free events for members and the community, open gym for the kids to run and play in the gymnastics area three times a week, an activity pool that is open in the spring and summer, and I could go on and on.

We go to the Y 4-6 times a week for exercise and so the kids can play and socialize- this is a HUGE help during school breaks because the kids club/child watch has great programs and play opportunities- and it’s included in the price of membership. And it’s so much more than the kid’s area at most chain gyms. The folks at child watch and kids club do crafts, lead games, read stories, and teach the kids how to play new games, and take them into the gym area to bounce on the huge trampoline!

Today Only, December 2nd- Cyber Monday, New members pay no joining fee if they join online using our special My Y Code CYBR19. Your friend will save up to $60! And if you are a member and your friend mentions your name at sign up,  you’ll get a free month of membership! If you are going to sign up, mention my name, Abby Hewes. Any way we can save money helps our families bottom line!

For our family, YMCA is definitely frugal: for $75/month, I am able to go to the gym for 2 hours a day and the kids can go to play and have fun. Any of our other local gyms can’t touch that price, and they don’t have the other programs or benefits.

The YMCA offers scholarships and reduced monthly membership fees for military families, families that receive WIC, and many other programs- don’t forget to ask about them!

And if you are the parent of a special needs kid, let me tell you that our local Y has the most wonderful, caring staff that cares for all kids. My big kid is autistic and he loves going to Kids Club to hang out and play. He also loves the monthly Kids Night at the Y.

Support Artists & Artisans This Small Business Saturday!

download.jpgI am a huge supporter of artists and artisans all year, but especially on Small Business Saturday.

Below as some small businesses owned by artists that I know (and endorse). Most of these businesses are historical or nerdy (as I am both), so they may not be your cup of tea, but it’s always fun to check out new businesses, right?

Carolyn’s Geek Boutique– I love her aprons and hooded towels

September Girl Designs– Dianne makes all kinds of awesome stuff, but I really love that she makes T-shirt quilts with your old shirts. This is great if you have theatre shirts from old productions or camp shirts, or if you have a loved one who has passed and you want to make something from their old shirts.

Kit’s Designs– Kit makes THE BEST EARRINGS! Is there a book that you loved as a kid? She can make earrings or a pendant of that book. Or Christmas ornaments.

Northernridge Glassworks– Awesome handmade lampworked glass beads.

CokGuzel– Handcrafted historically inspired jewelry and fabric

Viking Krafts– Rick makes beautiful knives, wooden chests, and all sorts of other goodies. I have several of his chests in my home.

The Brackish Baroness– Angela is immensely talented. Cloisonne jewelry, hand stamped copper jewelry, and fan art prints are among some of the cool stuff in her etsy shop.

Wyng’d Lyon Creations– Decals, accessories, jewelry, Cosplay goodies, even corset making supplies. Colleen has it all!

Talk Back: If you have a small business, please feel free to leave a link in comments!

 

Dave & Buster’s Holiday Deals!

main-module-6-2.jpgThis is a great deal, even if you don’t plan to give it as a gift!

When you download the new Dave & Buster’s app (in the App Store or Google Play), you’ll score 50% off your first purchase. This offer ends 12/4/19.

 

If you need to buy a gift for someone on your list who loves video games, yummy bar food, and tasty drinks, this second deal is pretty good too! Buy a $50 Gift Card and get a $10 Free Game Play Card.

sub-module.jpg I love this deal because you can buy this as a gift, and keep the $10 card for yourself/your family and keep it for when you need a family night or a date night out, especially when you combine it with some of the deals/values below.
Here are a few everyday deals you can take advantage of:

The Eat and Play Combo is a great deal.

I recommend joining the Dave & Buster’s Rewards Club.  I love taking the kids during the summer when we get coupons.

  • $10 FREE Game Play with $10 game play purchase for joining
  • MONTHLY EMAIL SAVINGS and a first look at what’s new (the past few months it’s been deals like $20 free when you load $20 on a card!)
  • EARN $10 FREE Game Play for every $100 spent in-store
  • PROTECTION for lost or stolen cards when registered online
  • 24/7 ONLINE ACCESS to your Power Card® or Power Tap® chip, ticket and Rewards point balances

11/29/19 Friday Freebies & Deals

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It’s Black Friday and I’m sure y’all are up to your eyeballs in Black Friday Deals and bargains, so I’m bringing you all kinds of fun free stuff this morning!

Freebies:

Deals:

Q-insights Car/Truck/SUV Survey Pays $200 (Irvine, CA)

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Q-insights is another company that I do research groups, focus groups, and online surveys to earn extra money.

They have a lot of stuff in South Orange County, and less often San Diego County. Recently, they have had a lot of surveys about newer high-end cars.

 They have an upcoming survey being held in Irvine/Orange County between December 10th-14th. The survey will be 2 hours long and will pay you $200 for your time.

They are looking for owners of the following vehicles 2016 or newer:

(Please note you will be required to provide proof of vehicle ownership)

  • Acura MDX
  • Alfa Romeo Stelvio
  • Audi e-tron
  • Audi Q5
  • Audi Q7
  • Audi Q8
  • Bentley Bentayga
  • BMW i3
  • BMW X3
  • BMW X4
  • BMW X5
  • BMW X6
  • BMW X7
  • Buick Enclave
  • Cadillac Escalade
  • Cadillac XT5
  • Cadillac XT6
  • Chevrolet Blazer
  • Chevrolet Bolt
  • Chevrolet Silverado 1500
  • Chevrolet Suburban
  • Chevrolet Tahoe
  • Chevrolet Traverse
  • Dodge Durango
  • Dodge Journey
  • Fiat 500e
  • Ford Edge
  • Ford Expedition
  • Ford Expedition EL
  • Ford Explorer
  • Ford F-150
  • Ford Flex
  • GMC Acadia
  • GMC Sierra 1500
  • GMC Yukon
  • GMC Yukon XL
  • Honda Clarity Electric
  • Honda Passport
  • Honda Pilot
  • Honda Pilot Sport
  • Hyundai Ioniq Electric
  • Hyundai Kona Electric
  • Hyundai Palisade
  • Hyundai Santa Fe
  • Hyundai Santa Fe XL
  • Infiniti QX50
  • Infiniti QX60
  • Infiniti QX70
  • Infiniti QX80
  • Jaguar F-PACE
  • Jaguar I-PACE
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee
  • Jeep Wrangler
  • Jeep Wrangler Unlimited
  • Kia Niro EV
  • Kia Sorento
  • Kia Soul EV
  • Kia Telluride
  • Lamborghini Urus
  • Land Rover Discovery
  • Land Rover Range Rover
  • Land Rover Range Rover Sport
  • Land Rover Range Rover Velar
  • Lexus GX
  • Lexus LX
  • Lexus RX-Series
  • Lincoln Aviator
  • Lincoln MKT
  • Lincoln MKX
  • Lincoln Nautilus
  • Lincoln Navigator
  • Maserati Levante
  • Mazda CX-9
  • Mercedes-Benz EQC
  • Mercedes-Benz G-Class
  • Mercedes-Benz GLC SUV
  • Mercedes-Benz GLC Coupe
  • Mercedes-Benz GLE SUV
  • Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe
  • Mercedes-Benz GLS
  • Nissan Armada
  • Nissan Leaf
  • Nissan Leaf Plus
  • Nissan Murano
  • Nissan Pathfinder
  • Nissan Titan
  • Porsche Cayenne
  • Porsche Cayenne Coupe
  • Porsche Macan
  • RAM 1500
  • Rolls-Royce Cullinan
  • Smart fortwo electric
  • Subaru Ascent
  • Subaru Outback
  • Tesla Model 3
  • Tesla Model S
  • Tesla Model X
  • Tesla Model X
  • Toyota 4-Runner
  • Toyota Highlander
  • Toyota Land Cruiser
  • Toyota Sequoia
  • Toyota Tundra
  • Volkswagen Atlas
  • Volkswagen e-Golf
  • Volvo XC60
  • Volvo XC90

If you have one of these cars, trucks, or SUVs listed above that is 2016 or newer, please fill out the following link: https://forms.gle/k66o83mZZTxrVai4A

I don’t receive any kind of referral bonus, this offer is just too great to pass up! If you’d like to join their email list to be notified of upcoming studies, click here.

Cross Country Cafe: Black Friday Deal on Keurig® Coffee Gift Bundle Available Now!

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Cross Country Cafe has an awesome deal for Black Friday! They’ve started their sale early, so you can get it now.

Keurig® Coffee Gift Bundle

The bundle includes:

  • 1 K1500 Keurig® coffee maker
  • 4 boxes of K-Cup® coffee (96 pods total) including Holiday Blend, Cinnamon Sugar Cookie, and Peppermint Bark Mocha
  • 1 wire K-Cup® storage rack (holds four boxes)

Sale ends Friday 12/6/19 at midnight EDT. 

If that’s not your cup of tea (or coffee), Cross Country Cafe has all sorts of other deals on tea, coffee, K-cups, Nespresso pods, non-dairy creamers, and more! They have a great gift guide here.

One of my favorite gift ideas is the monthly subscription to the K-cup of your choice!

FREE Printable Christmas Coupon BookAnd if you are looking for a cute printable, check out the FREE Christmas coupon printables from Cross Country Cafe!