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Welcome to Mary Lou's Sitting Room

Hello! You are entering the world of Mary Lou...hope you have fun here! I created this blog to be a place of refuge in the storm, inspiration in the fog, light in the darkness, and hope for your life. I love to encourage people and have fun-I hope you will find this true as you visit me here. I plan on writing about all types of subjects, because I am interested in all the good things God has made, so hang on for the ride~! I love to sew and also cook...hence the name..

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Tuesday Tips for that annoying question: What are we having for dinner tonight?

Good Tuesday morning! I was thinking today about a habit I began years ago that has helped me save time and money!
Since we have had to watch our pennies over the years (I was mostly a stay-at-home mom till the boys got older) I knew I could not afford to run to the store several times per week. Every time I go to the store for something I come home with more items than were on my list! So a friend suggested that I make a grocery list from a weekly menu.

I make up a menu for one or two weeks at a time-and then put the items I will need for each menu on the list. I always add a couple of days that are marked "leftovers" which we always have after I make certain dishes. Then I check my coupons and take along the ones I need for that week.  Having a menu also prevents the frustrating question of "what are we having for dinner tonight?" It really only takes a few minutes to make up a menu - and it also helps to do so with a cookbook on hand so you can have more interesting meals instead of the same old, same old!

It also helps to make your grocery list & menu out while looking at the weekly ads - then you can plan meals according to what's on sale and that helps save $ as well.

Besides that, all I can say is to try not to be lured by all the displays in the stores-buy what's on your list and don't deviate too much if you're trying to stay on a budget. Budgets are good things! They help us save for vacations & retirement, Christmas and all kinds of fun stuff! :) The pic of chocolate "blob" at the right is Cranberry Pecan Dark Choc Bark that I made at Christmastime. You just melt dark chocolate at medium temp in the microwave (can add choc chips - need about 1 1/2 cups total) and add as much dried cranberries and toasted pecan pieces as you like - spread out on parchment paper & let cool. Put it in the fridge to help that process & then break up into pieces to serve...Delish!

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