This is My "Real" Blog: I know. . I know. . .

Angie's Blog!

Monday, December 01, 2008

I know. . I know. . .

For the two or three of you who read this blog faithfully, I have been a disappointment over the last week or two.

My reasons?

Well, to be honest. . . we had company for most of that time. And, if I said we'd spent every minute doing old-fashioned "family" activities (playing games, telling old stories, etc.) that wouldn't exactly be true.

What was I doing? Well, I was, in fact, feverishly finishing Christmas presents for the family members that were here. I was also cooking . . . A LOT.

I'm not complaining. In fact, it felt great to get a couple of those projects done. Of course, I have more to do before the "real" Christmas holiday arrives in just 24 days (YIKES!!!) but, I'm trying to keep things in perspective, when I can.

And I'm not complaining about the cooking. I really enjoy cooking--especially when someone else is entertaining Caroline.

Mark and I have been making a real effort to not squander money eating out a lot. And that, in and of itself, is a good thing. I will still argue that nothing beats breakfast out -- especially on vacation. That is one of the most luxurious things for me when we're away from home. It doesn't happen all that often, but when it does, I'm a happy, happy girl.

But, all things being equal, paying $32 for our family of four to eat an evening meal -- although less stressful -- is somewhat silly. Especially when you consider that same $32 could feed us ALL in the most frugal of shopping excursions.

So, we've made an effort to eat at home more. And, we have. Up until last night, we hadn't eaten at a restaurant, or had carry-out for nearly two (maybe even three) weeks. In that time, I have made:

homemade pizza
sweet & sour meatballs
pork roast
shepherd's pie
swiss steak
sicilian roast
smoked chicken
breakfast for dinner (pancakes)
tuna melts
oregano chicken
cheddar potato soup

. . .and the list goes on.

Tonight, it was homemade chicken pot pie. Yes, I *did* use a storebought pie crust. Sue me. I don't know how to make good pie crusts.

I do have to mention, however, in this time of being frugal, I have made whole wheat bread 2 times, and have nearly mastered the art of making good biscuits. I have just about decided that you could find yourself being evicted from the south if you don't know how to make good biscuits. I also made homemade apple butter. That is really the reason I've made biscuits so much -- there's nothing in this world that I love more than hot, buttery biscuits with apple butter on them.

Excuse me....I need to find a napkin! :)

The trick with biscuits? It's all about the moisture. If they're dry on the counter when you're cutting into them, guess what's going to happen when you bake 'em. That's right. Oh, and brushing them with melted butter BEFORE you put them in the oven? Nice touch.

As a family, we will most likely continue on this "quest" to eat out less. As I watch what's been happening with the economy. . . not that I understand it, mind you. . .but as I consider the state of our country, and our utter disregard for saving money and being good stewards--I am more aware of our need to be responsible. This doesn't mean, however, that we'll never eat out again. It just means we'll think twice before heading out. That's all

All in all, it's been a good experience for us. I've been more "creative" with ingredients found in my cupboards than ever. I still have two (2) cans of artichoke hearts and a can of cherry pie filling that need to be used in some way. Oh, and that large can of candied yams that was supposed to go into sweet potato pie for Thanksgiving. (I let my cousin make the sweet potatoes this year) I'm sure I'll use that can before too much longer.

Well, I'm outta here. One of our new favorite shows, "Worst Week" is on. I love it!


Blogger SmallWorld at Home said...

Whatever you do, please don't mix the artichoke hearts and cherries together! ;-)

10:38 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

I applaud (and enjoyed!) your cooking spree.

12:34 AM  
Blogger 20Birds said...

and I have the best recipe for those artichoke earts.. seriously the best, we have called it frita, no rhyme or reason for that, but here goes and it is not original but still a slice of our home... chop those artichoke hearts, add some minced garlic, 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, 1/2 cup mayo... stir to blend well, put in little baking dish, bake until bubble, pass under broiler briefly, serve with warmed french bread slices.... i have missed you and yor posts greatly (writing as another person who needs to update blog)

7:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've got an artichoke chicken recipe on my cooking blog (I think). It's really good.

Cherry pie filling? Make a dump cake!

We dont' eat out as much as we used to. Seems like the food out isn't as good, they serve way too much, and it's too expensive.

For us it's a treat.

Got any more cookies?

8:07 AM  
Blogger Hilah said...

Sounds like a fun time :) Go Betty Crocker!

8:14 AM  
Blogger Judy said...

Welcome back! You did a lot more cooking than I did. On Saturday I did cook and everyone was at the table waiting before the meal was even done....I guess I hadn't been feeding them for a few days (lol). Hey, I needed a break :0

9:00 AM  

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