Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Save, time, money and get healthy with one secret

Shop for two weeks you can shop for two weeks or more worth of meals you will save money and time. You will save time at the store, your diet will be better because you will plan healthy meals and you will save money by not going to a restaurant instead of eating at home. 

Plan a menu for two weeks The most important thing is to know what your family eats. What they really eat. You will plug these things into a list. You will create an eating map. If you work late every Thursday or the kids roll in at different times because of sports after school commitments plan for it. Don’t plan to get a bag of burgers on the way home. Plan microwave burritos with a great big salad, tuna sandwiches with can soup. You get the idea simple but healthy like meals planned around your crock-pot. Sitting down for a few minutes and making a genuine list and taking the time to shop this list will save on many levels.

Shop the list Shopping the list means don’t buy things not on the list. I usually leave one day open to fill in with a surprise item I discover at the store. I plan to buy six snacks what snacks are open but I only buy six. With my clan I usually take a few snacks and hide them so everything is not gone in the first three days. I also plan on items to carry over.

  • Buy fresh OJ and concentrate juice for second week
  • Fresh veggies first week canned or frozen for the next
  • Fish days I plan later in shopping cycle because we buy and eat the same day on that day you can buy milk and some fruit to last until your next big shopping day.
Keep staples on hand and Buy in Bulk
Staples vary from home to home but there are some items no home should be with out. When creating your list shop your cabinets first to avoid over purchasing. Also this will guide you to create a meal for fresh food you have on hand.

I would include toiletries here like Soaps, Shampoos, Laundry soaps, cleaners. All these items should be bought in bulk or as needed to keep them in stock. Without grocery shopping I can usually prepare a meal from staples alone. The list below is comprehensive you will want to pare it down for your specific needs.
Increase your Skills The other thing I would suggest you have is a really good cook book. I have several and I do use the internet to quick reference how to cook specific foods. However, to get ideas for meals I love to flip through my books. My favorite book is broken down into food types so I can look at how to prepare carrots or just veggies. Another way to improve your list is to prepare your list from the recipes or get a new subscription. Food should be tasty, healthy and cooking should be a pleasure.

Be creative there should be a mix of fresh healthy meals, home cooked fast food and so easy a child could do it. Your schedule may dictate lots of fast easy meals at times. You can pack a weekend with great meals when  friends are in town. Try it and see if your waistline and your wallet don’t thank you.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Knowing your child’s friends will strengthen your relationship

Know their friends
You should know all your child’s good friends. Have them to dinner ask question and get to know their value system. Get numbers and addresses if needed. Let them know they call contact you too. Changes happen quickly ask specific question, be informed.

Ask for their help

Tell friends what you expect from your child and enlist their help to achieve results. I love to hear my son’s best friend say, “Clean your room or we’ll never get outta here.” His friends push him to keep up with home work too. They know the rules: bad grades and incomplete chores means he has no fun.

Give your child the benefit of the doubt

Choosing good friends is a skill you can nurture in your child. However, give your child the benefit of doubt about who he chooses but be involved with. If you have doubt, without proof, ask your child to tell you if the friend is ok. Explain that as friends values change he/she may need to discontinue or limit friendships. Give you child the opportunity to make good choices.

Good friends will ask for your guidance

If you’ve laid the ground work his friends may tell you when there is trouble. Recently I had a friend of my son’s tell me to “watch out for another child”. This child does not have much support so I give extra when he’s in the picture. It maybe hard but you can give advice without being judgmental. Leave the door open for question and support.

In Conclusion

Keep communication open. Be prepared to ask for and give help. Your child is the best judge of his friends. Talk and ask question and listen with an open mind. Your child will be glad you did. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Crafty Mom

Round Crochet Pillow

I’ve made this cool round pillow. Yes is is made with recycled bed sheets and t-shirt fabric. I made an inner lining from cotton muslin. It is soft and sturdy at the same time. Love it!