Sunday, August 31, 2014

My recipe for Shepard pie

1 pkg ground beef / turkey burger
1 med onion , chopped
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream corn
Red potatoes, cooked & mashed 
Garlic , minced 
Shredded cheese

Cook beef in a skillet until browned . Add mushroom soup, onion & garlic .

Place cooked beef on the bottom of a baking dish . Layer corn & potatoes . Sprinkle with cheese . Bake at 350 for 20 minutes . 

Aunt Liz's hearty manicotti

1 lb Italian sweet sausage
1 lb ground beef
1 med onion , chopped 
2 16oz cans tomato purée
1 6 oz can tomato paste 
1 tsp sugar 
1/2 tsp pepper 
18 oz pkg of manicotti shells
4 c ricotta 
18 oz pkg mozzarella cheese , diced 
2 tbs chopped parsley 
Grated Parmesan 

In covered 5- qt Dutch oven over medium heat , add 1/4 c water and cook sausage links 5 minutes . Uncover ; brown well , drain . 

Spoon fat from Dutch oven ; over medium heat brown beef and onion . Stir in tomato purée , paste , sugar & pepper . Add basil , salt , and 1 c water . Simmer 30 minutes .

Cut sausage into bite size pieces and add to beef mixture . Stir occansionally. Meanwhile cook manicotti as directed on pkg . Drain water . Preheat oven to 350.

In a large bowl , combine ricotta, mozzarella , parsley , 3/4 tsp basil . Spoon into shells .

Then spoon half of meat sauce into 13x9 basking dish . Place half of shells over sauce in one layer . Spoon remaining sauce ( except 3/4 c ) over shells ; top with remaining shells in one layer . Spoon rest of meat sauce and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese . 

Bake until bubbly . 30 minutes .

After school snacks for hungry kids .

Easy ham & cheese calzones

1 can refrigerated pizza crust
Deli sliced ham
1 c shredded cheese ( you choose)
1/4 c ranch dressing 
1 tomato , sliced thin 

Heat oven to 400. Unroll pizza dough on lightly floured surface . Cut into rectangles .

Top dough with ham , cheese & ranch dressing . Put tomato ontop . Fold rectangles in half , seal edges with a fork . Put on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking oil . 

Bake 16-18 minutes or until brown .

Note : you can prepare calzones ahead of time ( up to 8 hours in advance ). 

Easy chicken bake to please a crowd .

1 pkg stove top stuffing 
11/2 lb boneless chicken breast , cooked & cubed
1 can cream of chicken soup 
1/3 c sour cream
1 pkg frozen mixed vegetables , thawed

Heat oven to 400. Prepare stuffing as directed on pkg . Mix chicken , soup, sour cream and veggies in a medium bowl . Then put mixture in a casserole dish ; top with stuffing .

Bake 30 minutes . 

Get the whole family out this fall . Heres a some ideas on a budget

In Vermont we like fall weather . Bonfires , leaves , Apple picking , corn mazes , pumpkin carving , etc . 
A mile from my work is an Apple orchard . I pick apples everyear there . Last year I made apple pies , apple sauce and apple bread pudding . It's fun and the kids can fill a bag up with different apples they've picked .

The next town over from where I live is a corn maze . Take the family there and spend most of the day finding your way to the end . 

In Waterbury, Vt is Cider Hollow . Sip a cup of cider for free . Enjoy cider donuts for $2.50 1/2 dozen . Have a tour of the mill . And find VT made items at the gift shop .

It's the season for brew fests. September 27 , 2014 at the Trapp family lodge in Stowe , Vt  is their annual brew fest . There is food as well . Visit the website for more info .

Get your fold up chairs out , sweaters & ready to make s'mores by a bonfire . My family has a get together every year . We carve pumpkins , bring food & sit by the fire afterward . Who doesn't like that ? 

For more VT attractions or budget friendly ideas visit the Vt state tourist site . 

Easy fall dinner .

1 turkey oven bag 
Chicken breasts
Turnip , chopped & peeled 
Brussel sprouts 
Red potatoes, chopped 
1 med. onion sliced 
1 can chicken broth w/ herbs + 1 c water . Or until everything is covered .

Throw all ingredients in the oven bag . Place onto a baking dish . Bake at 350 for 35-40 or until all cooked . 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Stock up on items to get you through most of the school year . This list of items I find the cheapest or free!

Toothpaste - free ( use coupons at Dollar tree) 
Toothbrush - free ( Dollar tree after coupon ) 
Laundry soap - free or under $5 ( Arm & hammer is usually free after coupons . Tide I find is less than a $5)
Body wash - free after coupon 
Shampoo - B1G1 or free after coupon 
Shavers - rite aid , cvs , walgreens are the best . Use your coupons & up rewards . It can save you up to $5 or get free shavers  after points redeemed. Dollar general or Walmart Bic a Soliel or a Schick are less than $3 after coupons or free depending on the store . 
Pasta - .88c, or free after coupon 
Spagetthi sauce - can be as low as .40c a can 
Bread - B1G1 at price chopper . Or go to a Freihoffers bread store , use your coupons and get it free or pay less than $1.00. 
Meat/ deli meat - use overage from coupons or a rebate from beer coupon . And get it free . 
Milk/ juice/ soda- Dollar tree has juice , try to find the best priced milk at your store & find a coupon , I buy price chopper soda that is less than name brand . Look on Lozo .com
Snacks - find at the a Dollar tree . Match up with a coupon& it's free. 
Organizing - find bins at the dollar store or Christmas tree shop for almost nothing . I recently orangized my closet from bins at the Dollar tree store . 
Note books/ pencils/ pens/ markers / paper - you can find all at the Dollar tree store . Or Staples has coupons that will help . 

Back to school ? Tips on how to dress your kids & save big .

We are headed out of summer and into fall clothes . Stores are stocking up into warmer clothing . Check the clearance racks for summer clothing that your child can layer. Let your teens pick out outfits on the clearance rack . ( they won't complain about you picking out clothes & you will be happy to pay a smaller price ).

Apps to help you get through are shop kick & ibotta. These are designed to give you instants rewards & discounts at shop from Forever 21 to Old Navy & Macys . Use coupons at JCP to help . And shop on EBAY ( I've had massive success getting name brand clothes at the same price of a dollar store shirt . Type in BHFO . It's an EBAY store I love ). 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Making your weeks grocery list ? Bump it up by getting a coupon foreverything on there .

Register at

Find free items near your area with this website .

I found lots of good freebies on craigslist this week .

Even if the free items you find doesnt suit you at home . You could sell it.

I found another coupon database for free

Cheap meal for 2 under $6.00

2 steaks 2.68, rice .99 & yellow squash from the garden .

Fill the piggy bank with these $$ savings habits

1. Get rid of your landline phone if you have cell phones

2. Get rid of cable / satellite . Watch tv online 

3. Use cash for everything 

4. Put at least 10% into a savings acct that you can't tap into 

5. Try to carpool to work or move closer if you can

6. Cook at home and take leftovers to work

7. Do your weekly budget . I use a calander to help me 

8. Pay bills on time 

9. It you have a line of credit or credit card , pay it off every month 

10. Avoid lots of big payments if possible 

11. Only go to the store once a week

12. Rent redbox or watch movies online .

13. Use coupons as much as possible . Match with the best sales 

14. Evaluate cell phone use age . Call your provider and ask to lower your bill or change to a go phone .

15. Do hair, nails & makeup at home . Watch YouTube or get ideas off of Pinterest and learn how .

16. Grow your own veggies . Get the kids involved 

17. Do your own yard work 

18. DIY home projects . Make sure you know what you're doing otherwise it will cost you more $$. 

19. Check your bank fees . Change to free checking or a credit  union 

20. Keep track of what you spend 

21. Learn how to live without certain items or shopping all the time .

22. Sell unused items or furniture 

23. Evaluate your car insurance . Get different quotes or look at discounts you can receive .

24. Shop clearance , sales or EBAY to get the best deals .

Nothing for breakfast ? Try cherry cheesecake muffins

Blend crushed graham crackers with 6 tbs melted butter and a 1/2 c of sugar .
Put into muffins tins . 

Make a white cake : mix 2 eggs, 1/2 c sour crm , 1/2 sugar , 1 pkg crm cheese . Pour into muffin tins 

Next step put 1 tsp cherry preserves in the middle of each muffin . Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes or until done.

Acorn squash w/ raspberry stuffing .

Cut squash in half . Clean out seeds. Place into a baking dish . 

Stuffing : Green onion , chopped
Cooked brown rice 
1/4 c rasp vinaigrette 
1/4 c chopped walnuts 
1 tbs orange juice 

Combine stuffing together and spoon into squash . Cook at 400 covered with foil for 40 min. Then take off foil and cook for another 20 minutes or until cooked .

Blackberry & herb filet mignon

1/3 c blackberry / rasp vinaigrette 
3 tbs olive oil
Filet mignon 

Mix in a ziploc bag . Marinade for 1 hour . Add rosemary , thyme , basil , Marjoram , and oregano . Fry in pan 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Monday, August 4, 2014

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Don't know what to make tonight ? Limited money to make a fancy dinner ? Here's a simple recipe to please everyone .

Chicken Parmesan 

6 chicken breasts
Homemade or store bought spagetthi sauce 
Garlic & herb bread crumbs 
3 eggs 
Shredded mozzarella 

Preheat oven for 350. Meanwhile mix up eggs & coat chicken . In another bowl add bread crumbs . Roll chicken into bread crumbs until well coated . Place on a cookie sheet lined with foil . Cook for 35 minutes or until cooked . 
After chicken is cooked , spoon spagetthi sauce over chicken & sprinkle cheese over . Place back into oven until cheese is melted . About 5 minutes . 

Serve with a salad & garlic bread . 

My recipe for raspberry pie

1 pkg frozen raspberries 
1/2 c sugar 
1 tsp lemon juice 
1 tbs cornstarch 
Pie crust 

In a saucepan combine raspberries , sugar & lemon juice . Until raspberries are unthawed . Add cornstarch until thick .
Preheat oven to 350. Put one pie crust crust on bottom of a pie plate . Add raspberries & layer the other pie crust over . Pinch sides . Cook for 30 minutes or until crust is cooked . 

B1G1 free Herbal essences shampoo at Walmart .

Freebie after coupon at Family Dollar

$10 off $25 at JCP this wkd

Freebie in the mail today !


Freebies after coupons from Dollar tree

Friday, August 1, 2014

Freebie Friday !

Martha Stewart living magazine from, others are free after coupons .