Monthly Archives: September 2012

Kitchen Explosion

Now I have your attention! Yes, my kitchen has experienced an explosion of my interest. When I was in the workplace full-time, I was out of the kitchen full-time. If you read my last article, you know that I am home full-time now (read the article for details on why). To my husband’s delight, I have a new found love for my kitchen. Yes, it’s a bit too small, but as long as I’m the only one in it, it’s just fine for me. Get in my way though, and I lose interest because of bumping into each other at every turn.

So what has gotten my attention and brought such love into my kitchen, great food and being home full-time with my son ! Of course there are several things that brought me around to that realization…the discussion of DIY items with my friend (which made me think of making my own bread, butter, jelly and more), the successful attempt at making a pound cake from scratch

My cake–from scratch! 🙂

(Taste of Home, Million Dollar Pound Cake), the purchase of a couple of All-Clad pans at a bargain price, and being introduced to Cook’s Illustrated magazine and America’s Test Kitchen videos on YouTube. Yes, that’s a lot I know, but one led to another. In a matter of days, this had all happened. It all started from that one conversation with my friend. It’s amazing what contemplation will do.

I have since baked another pound cake (same type) for a church function, and made indoor pulled pork by following a Cook’s Illustrated recipe. Can you say, AWESOME. I realized if I continue on this path, there will be a weight gain issue in our home. I was fortunate to find that Cook’s has a healthy recipes cookbook. They take many of the same recipes and work through them to make recipes that result in the same taste but with fewer calories and fat. That is a win, win in my opinion!! I was excited to learn that I can still love cooking without having to give up truly good food, using tried and true recipes, and participating in the fun of cooking led by America’s Test Kitchen. I’m so excited!!

So what’s exploding at your house?

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Cut Open, Sleep Deprived, But Still Alive

Wow! THAT was a long vaca. I actually haven’t been on vacation. If you are a reader of my blog, you knew that I was expecting a baby. Well guess what, HE’S HERE!! And I am SO excited. I am 40 years old, and this is my first child. I had a boy, 10 lbs exactly. C-section (for all those mothers out there that screamed when they read the weight), 21.5 inches long, and BEAUTIFUL! Of course, I’m biased. I’ll post a picture, and you can be the judge.

I have recovered from my surgery, and I am back on track. Exciting news! I left my full-time job. Whoa….yeah. I have waited all these years for my little man. There’s no way I’m leaving him to only get to see him a couple of hours a day. I would sell my home and live in a lean-to if I had to (well maybe not a lean-to–DFCS wouldn’t like that I’m sure). We aren’t rich by a long shot. My husband works hard delivering milk (yes, the milk man is the father of my child), and God has extended such grace to us in the area of making ends meet. He’s shown me areas where we could cut back. I began putting my paycheck in savings starting January 2012 and trying to live off of one salary. It was difficult, but it was a great learning experience and helped us to build a little reserve/emergency account. You really learn what you can and can’t live without when you live on one salary. You also realize how much money you have been throwing away. I wish I had been doing this long ago. Oh well…no time for could’a.

Now is the time for “what can I do to save money,” and now it’s become a game almost. It’s fun! I have written out all of our bills. I’ve reviewed each one for areas I can cut. One of the BIGGEST areas of savings was my car insurance. I had NO idea my insurer wouldn’t notify me when lower cost policies were available. Some might ask, “why would they? They are making money on you.” To you I reply, “NOT ANYMORE!” I took my business elsewhere (cut my bill in half) and explained to them exactly why I did it. It’s not like they didn’t have opportunities to tell me when I was adding and removing cars from my policy. Oh yeah, and I went on a Facebook rampage and told everyone in my town to check their policy. Take that! 🙂

I am talking with a friend about starting a group of people who are interested in researching DIY items for the home that will save us all money. As I discover new things, I will be posting them here with instructions. I may even create a little “how to” video for you. If there is something you create in your home that you’d like to share, post it in the “Comments” section. I’ll try it out and post it on my blog with kudos to you.

Well, I better get going. Mommy-time is much more brief than it used to be. Until next time!! Happy days.

 

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