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    THATBRONWYNGIRL   24,963
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Learning...

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

How to make do, how to do things cheaper, more efficiently...which is no easy task, since I'm a money-saver and couponer by nature. There's nothing like a good deal, where I'm concerned. But now--it's all about tightening the belts and purse strings, and one of the best resources a girl could hope for happens to be.... The Internet.
Thank God for the Internet.

I'm learning how to repurpose pants into shorts and skirts, how to mend clothing, how to stretch food (got some great advice from BAMEIBOO in a comment on my last post...thanks!!), how to save food and freeze food and what to stock up on. I've got a squirrel mentality right now (HIDE THE NUTS!!), and right now I feel simultaneously excited and exhausted. I love learning new things, the idea of thinking outside the box and changing habits has always been cool. So, I'm trying to embrace that.

I got a part-time job (job #2 again...when I interviewed, my thinking was definitely 'whatever, it's a hobby job to pay for a pedicure now and again'...didn't know how grateful I'd be to have it!!) at Bath and Body Works, and I start training there today (I worked there for 2 years, a few years back...not concerned, lol), so there'll be that. I'm waiting to hear back from the Access/EBT people about the renewal. I'm couponing and reading money-saving blogs, and my bf's friend at work is going to show us how to coupon and take advantage of deals at CVS (apparently he's been making out like a bandit there).
I will figure this out. My mother failed at this...took my dad years to pay off the credit card debt she racked up, even after she'd moved out. I will not make those mistakes. WILL. NOT. I've got determination, if nothing else.

But that makes it that much more difficult not to flay my bf alive when we make dinner and he offers some to the roommate (see previous post RE: the incredibly irritating roommate). I've fed that man three times this week now (once out of guilt, once because not all of the batch-cooked food would fit in the fridge/freezer, and then because my bf offered and I couldn't do anything about it), and he can't even be bothered to take out the trash or clean HIS OWN bathroom. ARGH.
(Serenity Prayer)

In the meantime, I'm still fitting little servings of the Olive Garden 'buy one, take one' meals into my lunches (my friend treated me to dinner, so I got as much food as I could, then loaded up on salad, lol)...about 1/3-3/8 of the original "serving size" (term used loosely, apparently) each day, and veggies/fruit on the side. Cracks me up. The other tellers go out and get Burger King and Wendy's and McDonald's and one day the manager bought us Baskin Robbins as a treat...I just decline politely. It works, at this branch. :-)
They're actually proud and really supportive! (Even if the one girl freely admits that she doesn't get how I could possibly subsist on 'so little food,' lol!!)

We tried quinoa last night, and a new method of cooking baby carrots (toss them in a little bit of smart balance and honey...yum!!)...plus, bf brined the chicken before we baked it...it was SO JUICY!!!

Tomorrow's dinner challenge: leftover quinoa!! (Tonight is free-for-all, since I work until 9.)

Back to the grindstone...in the meantime, if anyone knows some good, guy-friendly, healthy, CHEAP recipes...please don't hesitate to share!! :-)
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IRISHBEANERGAL 4/24/2013 3:24PM

    Potatoes are your best friend on the cheap. A 15# bag here in WA state is about $3 bucks. Baked, with a bit of low-fat sour cream and a salad - dinner is served. If you have left over meat, sprinkle it on top with some shredded cheese (easy on both, the potato is the focus). Filling too.

I love my rice cooker, and tend to steam rice (cheap in the bulk section of the store - brown rice at about 69 cents a pound) and toss any left over veggies from the week for a *steam* stir fry. (no oil, just some water in the pan and steam those veggies a bit until heated) Again, if you have any left over meat from dinners, toss it in here. A little bit of Fat Free Cheese Fantastico Salad dressing (my splurge financially - I always use a coupon LOL - but nutritionally its a win) at the end of the stir fry so you have a *sauce*

My guy tends to like both of these - and he's a big meat eater. As long as it isn't *rabbit food* he will try it.

Crock pot chili is a good one - heavy on the beans, easy on the meat - still hearty too.

Eggs! Eggs are a huge savings - you can boil them, scramble - even do a quiche in the oven with left overs (meat, veggies etc). They can really stretch your budget as well.

Good luck. Send me an email if you want specific recipes!

~Irish

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