Archive for August, 2014

First Day of School ~ 2014

Today was the Littles First Day of School.  Papa is working late tonight, so he could be with us to drop off and for pick up.  Seeing as we aim to be at school by 8am, the morning went very smoothly.  Went and GO had glasses of chocolate milk and bacon grits, got to watch an entire Arthur episode, and got dressed without getting food on anything!  I was put-together enough to have lunches packed the night before, water bottles ready, and school bags by the door.  Plus dinner in the crockpot (pot roast).  All in all, a smooth morning, considering it was so early.

Of course, we had to begin with the pictures by the front door.

GO, Went, Mummy

GO, Went, Mummy

GO, Went, Papa (I <3 the look on Went's Face!)

GO, Went, Papa
(I ❤ the look on Went’s Face!)

Then at school, we dropped off backpacks and lunchboxes, before heading to the nursery classroom to get set up.

Went Colouring.

Went Colouring.

Getting Ready to Colour

Getting Ready to Colour

Helping Mummy carry the supplies.

Helping Mummy carry the supplies.

My Big Caterpillars!

My Big Caterpillars!

GO's First Day

GO’s First Day

Went's First Day

Went’s First Day

The leaving wasn’t even hard today.  It helped to have Otto with me.  GO went to her class from nursery (her teacher came to get her, Sister Sheep, and one of the other little girls in the class).  Went walked right into his class and started playing with a set of cars.  Otto and I grabbed a quick breakfast, just the two of us – to pray for the kids and their day, then back home to work until time to pick them up.

It’s hard to believe this is her 5th year at BBP.  I remember when she was tiny enough to be in the Wee Learn class (where Went is – same teacher, Mrs. B!).

THROWBACK!  GO's First Day EVER!

THROWBACK! GO’s First Day EVER!

Throwback!  GO's First Day EVER!

Throwback! GO’s First Day EVER!

And I love these pictures of the sweet twin cousins.

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2014

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2014

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2013

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2013

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2012

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2012

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2011

Precious Twin Cousins ~ 2011

Next year, it will be homeschooling for this big girl!

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(

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August Meal Planning & Pinterest

Most of the people who read this know I’m a huge fan of meal planning.  I tend to meal plan 9-10 months out of the year, then “freezer/pantry clean” for 2-3 months (depending on how the year is going).  July was our freezer/pantry clean month, recently, which worked out well since the boy caterpillars were gone, the older girls were at camp/on vacation so didn’t come over as often, and we had two small vacations planned – so we weren’t home as much.  This gave me plenty of time to prepare my August Meal Plan, and I’m *very* excited to share it with you.

This month, I made the decision to go through my Pinterest Food Ideas Board and cook a few brand new meals based on the board.  I’ve spent PLENTY of time looking for recipes, but never think to buy the ingredients and cook them.  This wasn’t easy in the beginning, it took almost twice as long to make my grocery list as it usually does…BUT I think it was well worth it as we are now half-way through the month.

August Meal Plan (Pinterest Meals from my Board are **)

1-Out to Eat (Wendy’s – Traveling)
2-Mexican Chicken
3-**Cheesecake Crescent Rolls (HUGE HIT  – the family wants these every month)
4-White Chicken Chili
5-Chicken Nuggets
6-Special Out to Eat Pizza Night
7-**Chili Mac (No leftovers!  GO really liked this!)
8-**Crockpot Santa Fe Chicken (One of my favorites, with white rice.  Mixed bag on the kids – but Otto loved it)
9-Lasagna
10-**Chicken/Red Potatoes/Green Beans One Dish (Another Family Favorite, every month was requested)
11-Slider Burgers (not new, per say – but we’ve never done “baby burgers” which was a nice surprise and fun for the kids)
12-**Pull Apart Pizza Bread (Kids loved it – easy to make, Went actually LICKED his bowl!)
13-**Cranberry Crockpot Chicken (It smells good – we’ll see how it tastes tonight!)
14-Beef Risotto
15-**Apricot Lemon Chicken
16-**Baked Spaghetti (my husband is looking forward to this one!)
17-Taco Salad
18-Curry Chicken
19-Rotten Meat
20-**Pepperoni Roll-Ups
21-Quesadillas
22-**Meatball Sub Casserole (B10 wants this – unbeknownst to me, Meatball Subs are his favorite sandwich! o.O)
23-Italian Chicken
24-Out to Eat
25-**Chicken Pot Pie Cupcakes (with two leftovers for GO and Went’s lunches the next day)
26-Pot Roast
27-**Bubble Pizza
28-Hawaiian Chicken
29-Nachos Supreme
30-**Stuffed Bell Peppers
31-Hamburger Soup

So overall, that is 13 new meals for us.  A big number, but so far most have been well-received.  In fact, the only one that got any pushback was the Santa Fe Chicken…it was missing some sort of spice.  That being said, everyone cleaned their plates/bowls.  I have found that my size family often means I need to give my rice cooker a workout and fix a helping of rice for each person.  This works for us – because rice is inexpensive, I keep it in a 10 gallon food safe container, and any leftover rice is eaten for his second dinner by B10 (he adds cajun spices and sauce and makes “spicy rice”).

Total cost (plus items for lunch and breakfast) was $350.  We also scored a HUGE deal at Publix this month – they were running their occasional coupon where if you spent $50 you could buy a $50 gas gift card for $40.  We were able to buy SIX!  That’s $60 in free gas this month!  SUCH a blessing for us!

Now for September’s Challenge.  We have had a couple of unexpected expenses come up (surgery, B10’s front tooth has been knocked out AGAIN, etc).  We need to really keep our entire monthly food budget at $250.  Not including our special vacation week (which is already paid for).  I’m not sure how we are going to do it – but I’ll be posting my September Meal Plan and Shopping List soon.  If you have any tips – send them my way!

~Mummy Butterfly  )i(