Frugal Tip Tuesday – Homemade Yogurt

I wrote about this a long long time ago. How I wanted to make my own yogurt. We go through so much of it each week, I figured it would be a little cheaper, and healthier too since I know exactly what I put in it.

But it never happened. I pinned the slow cooker recipes/over night oven recipes. My husband even did lots of research and bought me a really great yogurt maker for Christmas. And we never used it. But this past weekend I finally did it! If you follow me on Instagram (don’t be shy, request to follow!) you saw the Saturday night yogurt making party we had.homemade yogurt

It was so easy!

I followed the directions for my maker; heated 2L of whole milk to 82 degrees, cooled the milk to between 44 and 42 degrees, add a little cooled milk to the starter (I used 1/4 c plain Greek yogurt), and add that back into the cooled milk, poor into the maker and leave it for 4.5 hours, and then into the fridge for 8 hours. (To save even more money, you don’t need to purchase a yogurt maker, you can just use your slow cooker! This is a great fool proof recipe to follow)

AND ITS DELICIOUS! You can use whatever kind of milk you like and you can add milk powder, before heating the milk, for extra protein (which I forgot to do, but will do next time). We’ve been eating it with honey and granola and fresh fruit, and the kids loved it with a little strawberry jam.

Obviously the price can very greatly on this, since you can use whatever milk you like, so it may not always be frugal. Adding milk powder will increase the price, but also increases the protein and makes it thicker like Greek yogurt. And Greek yogurt can get pricey! Making it can also be a little finicky depending on what milk you use (whole won’t need anything to thicken it, while skim milk would), and adding different amounts of starter can produce different results. I wrote down on a post it note what I did, so I can adjust next time. My first batch isn’t a thick as I’d like it to be, so I’m going to use more starter and add some milk powder to the next batch.

Give it a try, I’m so glad I finally did!

 

 

 

Meal Plan Monday – Nov 24 2014

Another busy week ahead! Can you believe December starts next week? And Advent starts this weekend! Crazy! And that means things are only going to get busier in our house, so next week I am starting a new cleaning schedule, which I will share on the blog later this week! I love lists, and an easy to follow printout on my fridge is exactly what I need to keep me on track. Just like how I plan my dinners, and keep it on the wall or the kitchen!

Here is what we are eating this week:

Monday – chicken Caesar salads (chicken, fries and veggies for the kids)
Tuesday – meatballs, fried rice and broccoli
Wednesday – cabbage roll casserole
Thursday – pierogies with bacon , red peppers and zucchini
Friday – baked fish, fries, and corn

I will also be making some banana muffins this week, and I might make more yogurt too. Yup, I finally got around to making my own yogurt in the yogurt maker I got last year…the year before… Watch for that recipe tomorrow!

And as always, I’m linking up over at Org Junkie.

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Meal Plan….Tuesday November 18 2014!

This blogging thing just isn’t happening right now. The problem isn’t lack of ideas (I randomly think up awesome posts), it’s time…3 kids sure keep me busy, plus a house to clean, part time work to do, and feeding a baby every couple hours (3 months, and she still wants to eat every 2 hours most days!). And right now, any free time I have I have been crocheting, and oh boy is there a blog post begging to be written about all my crochet projects….if only I had time.

So there is a little tease, hopefully this week I can share with you all my frugal crochet projects. Some are Christmas gifts, some Christmas decor, and some are just fun little projects!

Until I can get some pictures of those projects, and write up a post about them, here is our meal plan for the week…a day late, opps!

Monday – pizza pasta (your fav pizza toppings in a tomato sauce, over your fav pasta! Super easy, kids love it, make it as healthy as you want with extra veggies!)

Tuesday – tacos

Wednesday – my famous spaghetti

Thursday – meatballs, rice and broccoli

Friday – fish and chips and salad

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As always, I am linking up over at Org Junkie. Happy menu planning everyone! (Changing up my picture, since we got snow the other day, and its well below zero!)

Meal Plan Monday – November 10

These days, I feel like the only time I get to sit down is when I am feeding the baby. Is this normal for you stay at home moms? Do you constantly feeling like you are on the go?

I need to accept that life is busy these days, and that’s just the way it is. I have to be very efficient in everything I do, otherwise my to-dos don’t get crossed off my list! This week I am getting back to my cleaning schedule, and using my calendar to plan out my daily things, not just the kids activities and special things that pop up during the week. I have also started to work a tiny bit each month, from home thankfully, and am planning on making some Christmas gifts…honestly, the busier I am, the better organized and efficient I become! One thing that really helps me during the week, is my meal plan! I don’t even know how to grocery shop without my list and dinners planned out! And I know, come 5:30pm,  would be a frantic mess if I didnt know what was for dinner that night. One less thing for me to think about and stress over :)

Here is what we are eating this week:

Monday – one pot cabbage casserole (kids will try a little of this, but I am also making mac and cheese for them)

Tuesday – breakfast for dinner (eggs, hash browns, bacon and smoothies)

Wednesday – chicken nuggets, french fries and broccoli

Thursday – pizza

Friday – fish, roasted potatoes, and veggies

Saturday – hubby’s birthday, his choice!

As always I am linking up over at Org Junkie. Stop by and check out lots of great meal plans, as well as other organizing tips!

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Budgets…

So, my husband and I are about to work on our family budget. Previously we have used Excel for it, but I have been looking at online options, and other software that are more budget specific than Excel is. We haven’t decided what will we use yet, so I’d love to hear from you if you use anything like Mint.com, Quicken, or YNAB. Or maybe we’ll kick it old school and use paper and a pencil!

Hopefully I can share a bit about our process in the near future, but in the meantime you can check out some previous posts I wrote (see below), as well as the awesome posts over at Real Housekeeping, since it is Budget Week over there, and they are so nice to consider me a contributor! (Only one post so far, but many more to come in the future!)

A Stylish Bump on a Budget

Meal Plan!

Kids Room on a Budget

Women’s Money Week: budgets

Closet Organization on a Budget

Saving Can be Easy

 

Again, I would love to hear from YOU. How do you budget? What program/software do you use? Do you love crunching the numbers? Or hate it? Remember, budget doesn’t have to be a “four letter word” ;)

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