Friday, July 12, 2013

Farmers Market Adventure and New Ways to Cut Spending

Last weekend the family took a trip to see some friends about 2 hours away. On the way we went through Wetherford. As we were driving though the town I noticed their local Farmer's Market. Having the most wonderful husband in the world he turned the truck around and we went back to look around.

 I was so excited to see all the wonderful colors. It was all I could do to not but at least one of everything there!
 We did take some of these fabulous grapes home with us however. Actually, Dusty and I ate most of them on the drive home while the kids were sleeping!
If I hadn't just bought bell peppers at the grocery store a few days before I would have taken some of these home but I didn't want the ones I already had to go to waste.
 I thought of my mom when I saw all the okra! The last time I was at the local farmers market in Alamogordo with her she was grabbing up all the okra she could get to freeze to have some for the winter months. I'm sure most of it was ear-marked for my dad's jambalaya or gumbo that he makes.
 These potatoes were HUGE! I am positive they would have made a wonderful baked potato to go with an awesome steak! (Assuming I ever had the extra money to get an awesome steak)
 I think the watermelon were as big as RaeLynn.

I made Dusty commit to trying to get over there at least once a month to bring home goodies. Then again, I should just look into a farmers market close by here.

Recently, it seems like money is getting tighter and tighter. Several of our bills have gone up and with the fall semester fast approaching which will mean an added tuition bill for both Dusty and I I have been looking into ways to cut our spending down further.

For starters we have go to quit eating out so much. It seems like every weekend we are at one place or another causing us to need to get lunch or dinner and then it just snowballs from there. However, there are other things I am looking into.

A few years ago I bought a book. It was on sale at a Barnes and Nobel. The title, "Make the Bread Buy the Butter" intrigued me. During the time I have had it I have used it only a few time. Mostly, for the pizza dough
recipe that is in it.  The other day I pulled it out and started looking through to see what I would find in it.

One of the suggestions, as in the title, was making fresh bread. So I started with that. And Cinnamon Rolls!

Today, I decided to try a new recipe. Fresh, home made peanut butter. The recipe is simple.

1-2  pounds raw, shelled, skinned peanuts                          
2-3 Tablespoons oil (peanut perferably)

   I spent probably 2.5 to 3 hours shelling and skinning the peanuts. Let me tell you that part was not fun. My fingers hurt like crazy but I got it done!

Next was the blender! Dump in the peanuts and the oil and let the blades do the work. That part was a little more time consuming than I thought it would be and I kept having to stop and loosen up the mixture but all in all it worked out pretty good.

And in the end: PEANUT BUTTER!  I know it doesn't look like much but, surprisingly the peanut butter is naturally sweet. I added a bit of salt but I'm starting to think that I may not have needed to do that.

So there it is. One more step in my journey to saving money and getting healthier. I like knowing exactly what is in my food and this way I can! 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

New weight-loss challenges and an anniversary

As I have posted SEVERAL times, I'm on a road to getting healthier and losing a ton of this added weight that I have been carrying around. Well, I'm happy to say

Me and my awesome sister in 08 or 09
that I am no longer alone in my journey.(Not that I ever really thought I was. Ton's of people are in the same place I am.) Anyway, my sister and I talk EVERYDAY! Seriously, we talk via Facebook Messenger more now then we ever did as kids and we lived in the same room back then. She saw my post about my newest tools for getting into shape and decided to follow suit. She created a schedule, a chart, and even went with the cool little jar things I did. You can see it all on here blog right here
We have decided that even though we live in 2 different states (New Mexico and Texas) that we are gonna do this together and help to keep each other accountable. Its always nice to have someone there that is supporting you, don't you think?

So with that I have been trying really hard to stay diligent with my working out and eating right.  I am tracking my calories on and I am doing my best to stay active.
My sweaty self post workout yesterday!

Ok, moving on to the anniversary. On June 28, 2013 Dusty and I celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary. To be honest I was a little shocked to realize we have already been married for 5 years. I know that doesn't sound like a very long time but if you knew some of the crazy things we have been through you would be shocked too.

Anyhoo, Dusty has been BEGGING to go to Medieval Times dinner show FOREVER! Every time we would travel to visit the metroplex he would beg for us to go. And every time we either didn't have the money or we didn't have the time. So I decided this would be the perfect way for us to celebrate our anniversary. (What could be better than knights in shinning armor defending the princess' honor right?)
Us at the entrance of Medieval Times

Thanks to our wonderful friends we were able to make this little trip into Dallas kid free. Our FIRST kid free date in A YEAR! That's right folks. We hadn't been on a date alone since baby girl was born. So there for a while I was a little lost with both hand free.

Photo with the princess!
We sprung for the "Kings Royalty" seating package which came with all sorts of goodies like front row seating, a photo with the princess, and a commemorative program. We even got a special "cheering banner" to wave for our knight. It was amazing. We ended up being seated front row center. I could have reached out and touched the horses if I wanted to! And I wanted to. (Dusty wouldn't let me. Something about getting into trouble or distracting the horses.....)

The evening was wonderful and A TON of fun. I am definitely looking forward to being able to take the kids with us some time but that will definately have to wait until baby girl is a bit bigger.