Is it too early to hit a recipe rut?

Have you ever made a meal you were so excited to try and were so disappointed in the outcome?  That was me last night.  I am trying to get out of my food rut and I feel like I am failing.  I found a recipe in my Kraft Busy Family Cookbook for Creamy Chicken and Pasta Casserole.  I changed a few things in it since I am a super picky eater and only like a few vegetables.  I don’t like celery, onions or cooked red peppers so I opted for fresh green beans and corn.

I was so excited the whole time prepping thinking it was going to be so good, and it was just alright.  The chicken, cream sauce and pasta were good.  I liked the cream sauce the most.  This also happened with two other dishes I made earlier this month.  It wasn’t completely horrible; it was good, but not amazing.  I have some for leftovers tonight, I am looking forward to giving this dish a second chance.  Maybe it was my choice of vegetables or the fact that I over extended myself in the kitchen yesterday with 3 different things going on at once.  I made chicken in the crockpot for quesadillas, my apple cinnamon butterscotch chip muffins and pasta casserole.

Whatever it was I am getting tired of this ho-hum recipe rut.  Maybe next time I will make this sans vegetables.   Have you had any recipes that just fell completely flat for you?

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Attempting to jump on the meal plan band wagon!

Since the start of the New Year I have been seeing lots of posts about meal planning on Facebook and blogs.  Has your family had any successful meal planning menus?  Honestly, I haven’t been very consistent.  Last week I had a great week planning wise, I even went to far as to meal plan my breakfasts!  Working midnights, maintaining some kind of eating schedule is my biggest challenge.  I have started working on smaller meals throughout the day.  On mornings I work I try to eat breakfast at 5am and that seems to set my schedule for the rest of the day.  Last week I decided that I wanted more of a variety for breakfast.  I saw this recipe on Mom on Time Out and decided to tweak it for my liking.  I headed off to Big Y to get my supplies!

I got sausage, precooked bacon shredded cheese, eggs and 8-inch tortilla rounds.  I started off browning half of the pork sausage roll in my pre-heated skillet.

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Once the sausage was browned I lined a bowl with a paper towel and set it aside to cool.  Next thing I did was get my scrambled eggs ready!  I made my scrambled eggs  with just American Cheese.  Then I let these cool before I made my wraps.

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I set out my tortilla rounds on wax paper so I could wrap them easier.   I have yet to master how the heck to wrap up these things, these might be a tad overloaded.

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Pictured above: Sausage, cheese and egg.

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Bacon, egg and cheese

Like I said I can’t wrap these things to save my life!  Thank goodness these actually closed, there was much man handling and coercing for these to close.  Next time I might have to watch a few YouTube videos on how this is actually done.  This one actually doesn’t look too bad.  I was quite proud of this one!

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After I tackled the folding, I wrapped them in the wax paper, sealed them with tape, labeled them and threw them in the freezer.

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To reheat these I placed them frozen in the microwave for 45 seconds, then I flipped them over and microwaved for another 45 seconds and they were perfect!  I was so excited that these turned out to be so good.  It’s a nice to have more of a variety to quick breakfasts than just cereal and chocolate chip muffins.  What kind of quick fixes does your family do for breakfast?

Apps to help save you money!

Let’s face it, everyone could use a little extra cash, right? I have been using two apps to help me do just that! Ibotta and Receipt Hog help me save money by offering cash back on things that were already on my shopping lists.

I really love Ibotta! Do you shop at Wal-Mart, Target, Wegman’s Whole Foods or Big Y? Those stores along with Stop and Shop, Hannaford’s. CVS, Costco, BJ’s, Rite Aid and Walgreens all offer rebates on certain products. Here’s how it works:

After you sign up, simply shop at your favorite stores that are listed as retailers with Ibotta,

see if any of the items on your list match up with the products being offered.

Complete a short, one question survey or two then scan the barcode on the product.

Then upload a picture of the receipt and VOLIA!

The refund amount automatically appears in your Ibotta account!

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You can earn redeem your account balance for cash or you can add they money to your Paypal or Venmo accounts.  You can even turn your cash in for a Starbucks, iTunes or Regal Cinema gift cards!  You can also earn extra money by earning cash bonuses for buying certain products and completing certain tasks.  I have only had the account since June and have saved $20.00 into my account.  There are more categories than just groceries they have rebates available in Beer, Wine and Spirits, Apparel, Electronics, Movie Theaters and more!

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The next app is called Receipt Hog and it’s so simple to use!  All you need to do is shop at your favorite grocery stores and take a picture of your receipt , upload it and earn coins for your purchases!  I have redeemed my receipts from Target, Wal-Mart, Big Y, BJ’s, Stop and Shop, CVS, Walgreen and even Market Basket.  Depending on the total amount spent on your receipts you can earn between 5 and 15 coins.  You also earn a spin on the slot machine to earn even more coins!wpid-screenshot_2014-08-27-05-18-54.png

When you shop you have to make sure that you have at least one or two grocery type items on your receipt to earn coins.  For instance, a few days ago I spent $84.50 at Target.  I uploaded the receipt under the “snap” option in the app.  I had six grocery items and eight other items, I earned 15 coins and a spin.  You can upload up to three receipts a day and redeem the coins for cash or an Amazon Gift Card!

 Sign up online at Ibotta and if you sign up with Receipt Hog you can earn an extra 5 spins with your first receipt upload!  Or you can download the through the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store and sign up directly on your phone!

Use the code p3bew for Ibotta!

Use the code r9e8ki1l for your extra 5 spins on Receipt Hog!

 

 

 

© Copyright 2014

Are your kids eager to learn about the world?

DISCLOSURE: We received one free month and compensation from Little Passports in exchange for our experience and opinions with this product.

A few weeks ago, I became intrigued by an ad that appeared up on my Facebook page. It was for a company called Little Passports. For a small monthly or one time fee, your child can receive a package once a month from Sam and Sofia. There are two options, World Edition or USA Edition.

In the World Edition, Sam and Sofia visit a different country every month and send a package to your child with fun souvenirs, letters, stickers, a passport (to track their travels) and activity sheets!

In the USA Edition, Sam and Sofia visit two states every month. This package includes an activity journal, postcards and stickers! Each subscription also features access to online activities. The recommended ages for both editions are 5 to 12 years old.

I am really excited for our first package to arrive and share with the Littles! I also look forward to sharing their experiences with you also!

© Copyright 2014