Thursday, January 10, 2013

Lots of new challenges, let chat over a drink

It's been a whirlwind with moving a family of 6 to a new town, new schools and starting new jobs, but we are finally settling in! Temporary anyway.  We have stumbled upon many challenges in our new town that has strained our budget a bit, but thankfully we are figuring it out and I figured it was time to start to share my challenges with my readers.  Thank you to all my loyal readers who keep messaging me saying they can't wait for me to come back and welcome to all my new readers!

Where to start off a new post?  How about with a drink?
 

Ahhh, nothing like a rich chocolate hot drink on a cold day.  And even better with frosty the snowman melting in it!  A few weeks ago I stopped at one of my favorite coffee shops because they had a great deal going on.  Ok a confession, I love Caribou Coffee's turtle mocha's.  I rarely get them because well at almost $5 a drink, I have better places to go with that money. But they were offering a buy one drink, get a second for $.20!  It was too good of a deal to pass up.  And I was even feeling in the giving mood so I got 2 sets of their special and decided to surprise Mr. Bacon and Brother Bacon with a morning break at their work.  With 4 turtle mocha's I set off.  Sometimes there are other's helping at the work site and I'd figure I'd come prepared with an extra drink to hand out, however that day it was just the 2 of them.  I dropped off their coffee and had a dilemma on my hands, there was no way I could handle the caffeine in 2 big cups of coffee like that.  I hate the though of dumping a treat like that so I did what any budget saving person would do, freeze it!

It was a great time to try out the cool ice cube tray Sister Bacon bought me for Christmas too. Coffee bean ice cubes! Perfect for freezing my coffee for my iced drinks. 

In went the turtle mocha and out came cute coffee bean shaped cubes!


 I tossed a few in a mug, and then added some hot water and a packet of hot cocoa mix I got in a gift basket for Christmas also. 


Mixed it all up but it was still missing something.  Melting frosty the snowman!  Nothing better than a scoop of whipped cream in your hot chocolate.  A few days before I had some left over whipped cream from a recipe. No wasting it here, (and good thing I got to it before the kids because they'd eat it by out of the bowl!) so I took out a mini cupcake pan and added a few spoonfuls to each spot.

And had some fun decorating them, a few with sprinkles, others with some mini chocolate chip eyes and orange sprinkle nose.  Then they went into the freeze. I popped one out and tossed it in my drink to melt away.  Delicious!  The Bacon kids love these in their hot chocolate too along with a few marshmallows!
So now that I have my warm drink, on to those challenges.  A few things we are figuring out is managing in a house half the size we used to have along with a much smaller kitchen and fridge.  This has put a challenge on how much we can keep on stock in our pantry and fridge. We are finding that we are shopping for 1 week only at a time now because there just isn't much room to fill up the fridge.

Where to shop is another challenge, Walmart here is not so great.  I have to say there are good Walmart stores out there, we were spoiled where we used to shop.  This one has many empty shelves and the produce is less than desirable.  So we are exploring other stores.  Thankfully I have found a great bread store!  I can get healthy whole wheat bread for $1-$1.25 a loaf.  So I stock up the freezer with it.  We'll keep exploring around town and working on our budget now that we shop weekly.

We're also working on adjusting to a 2 parent full time job family and we have also added to our family! A month before we moved we had a  kitty adopt our house, she was a stray and we decided to give her a home and welcomed Meow Bacon to our family.  And Brother Bacon's dog had a litter of puppies who needed a new home so we welcomed Woof Bacon to our family just last week.  It's a crazy new life and so many things have changed and challenged us the past 3 months but we continue on our path to save money!  I hope you all stick around, I will be having more recipes to come and I'm hoping to update the very popular and over a year old post  on how we budget our grocery money soon too.













15 comments:

  1. What a nice surprise to find an updated post from you in my email! Glad you are getting all settled in your new place. Look forward to more of your awesome tips & recipes!!

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  2. Aw, sounds like lots of furry changes for you.

    About the "not so good" Wal Mart" - is there an Aldi grocery store in your new area? I love shopping there for basic items. It's a great place to stock up and the prices are incredible. I have been going there for years. I was initially skeptical because most of it is their own brand, but truly, it's good quality, great prices. Check it out if you get a chance!

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    1. Thanks for visiting. Sadly we don't have an Aldi's near us. We used to have one before we moved but it was 45min away and we didn't go there often due to gas prices. I would love to have an Aldi's near me as I found most their groceries great!

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  3. So happy to see you're back! I never thought about freezing cool whip to put in a hot drink. I found this link to a blog on Pinterest that gives a recipe for homemade hot chocolate if you don't have one and it makes a ton! Thought you might enjoy it since you're all about homemade stuff.

    http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2011/12/simple-handmade-edible-gift-homemade.html

    I unfortunately can't have chocolate since I'm allergic to it but I made this recipe and gave it as gifts. I got several compliments and requests for seconds. My kids and husband are addicted to it!

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  4. Hello from FL! Of course I found you via pinterest and the famed dogfood post, and also your yogurt post (bought my jars today so I'll be doing that probably tomorrow), and also saw today about refilling the "grabbers" pouches so needless to say, we have a lot in common and I find your blog useful for many reasons. I am a homeschooling mom to 6 children (and 7th on the way, due in May), so finding ways of having more bacon in our pockets is a huge part of my everyday life. Thank you so much for your inspiration and I hope to see that updated grocery/meal plan post soon. I try to keep our grocery/food budget at $400 or less a month, which I think would be comparable to $80 for a family of 6, while we are a family of 8-9. Just the little savers like making our own yogurt for the cost of milk, and refilling grabbers go a long way to stretching that bacon. :) Thanks so much!

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  5. A meow from Finland! I found your blog and after reading a few posts, me and my husband started using your strategies when food shopping. We used to spend lots of money and go to the market many times every week, so it wasn't cheap and a lot of the food was never used. We started planning our meals for a week, especially since our budget was very very tight at the time I read your blog, and now we're spending less money than we used to! I'd like to thank you for sharing your strategies to help people like me learn to spend my money more wisely when grocery shopping. Thank you Ma Bacon! I hope you keep writing this blog, even if you'd have no "new" ideas to share, but just to keep teaching us how to do things! I'll start reading your blog regularly :)

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    1. Me also!!!!!!!! I don't waste food anymore! I make out a list of what is in both freezers,plan my dinners from the,so I use what I have and buy what I need ......I have to start doing better,to get the spending down! I have look at the cleaning items and paper products,and seperate on the bill....I do the cleaning $ pretty good.

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  6. Just stumbled upon your blog via Pinterest. I don't know if you're comfortable sharing what town you live in. I'm in Brainerd, that's why I'm curious :) I wish we had an Aldi here. I've gotten pretty good at using the local store's food coupons for our groceries. I'll never forget the feeling when hubby and I living in St. Cloud and our weekly food budget was $10. Now, my cupboards are filled with my deals :D Jessie :)

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  7. Please excuse my ignorance; what is refilling grabbers? Thank you!

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  9. Wish there was spell check on here....I type too fast, and don't proof read it before sending...Sorry

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  10. I use heavy cream and sugar,sometimes vanilla if I have it...WAY BETTER than cool whip!.....The added ing. they put in those ready made whip cream products.......not good, It takes seconds with the blender! Awesome on top of brownies!!!!!

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  11. Going to make the egg muffins ....eggs with cheese,broccoli anything I have saved in my freezer for stir fries...I hope they come out as good as Mrs Bacon's look!!!

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  12. Hoping all is well for to. I just came your posts and am hoping you'll post something new soon. :)

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