Friday, March 19, 2010
I was talking to a friend this week about writing and how it always seems to take me so long, and she said when she writes blog posts, she sets her timer for twenty minutes and writes, and when the timer goes off, she’s done. Twenty minutes! I’m so jealous.
I think this is the week everyone has been waiting for — when I spend half my monthly budget in one week. My mom was in town, which requires a bit of an upgrade, and also I had people over for dinner on Sunday, so that throws things off even more. Not sure how I’ll count that. In terms of my normal budget, visitors and meals for others are generally treated separately from my regular food budget, as I try not to subject my friends and family to my usual level of parsimony. It’s a bit of an acquired taste, not so easy to pick up in a weekend.
I have yet to get a handle on my work situation, so was happy to have some leftovers to start the week with — Lone Star Chicken and also the cranberry-peach pancakes I made on Sunday. I actually really like leftover pancakes straight out of the fridge, not heated up or anything. No syrup either, just on their own, like a muffin or bagel or something. It sounds weird but it’s actually really good. I also still had yogurt and some of Bryant’s granola.
So Monday I had yogurt with granola and banana, and a piece of toast with peanut butter, and then I went out and worked and got back very late and probably should have had the chicken but had pancakes instead. It felt too late for chicken.
Tuesday I had the end of the pancakes for breakfast and Lone Star Chicken over pasta for dinner, and some Nutritious Uncooked Candy for dessert.
My mom was coming on Wednesday, so Tuesday evening I went to Whole Foods to get stuff for Wednesday dinner and Thursday breakfast and lunch.
I had decided to make ham and bean soup with cornbread and a green salad for dinner, because it’s a long drive for her and difficult to time dinner precisely, so better to make something that will be fine no matter what time it’s eaten. I wasn’t sure what we were going to do about lunch but figured I’d get some sandwich stuff and fruit and we could take it from there.
So I got some mixed greens by the pound (Lettuce Spring Mix), which was great, you can get just a little bit, and some cornmeal (Organic Yellow Corn) for the cornbread. I splurged on some $13/lb roast beef (In House Roast Bee) because that’s my favorite thing for sandwiches and I make them so infrequently it’s worth it to me to get what I really like.
I bought a two pound bag of carrots (Carrots 24/2# Og) and some bananas (Banana Yellow CV). I got a small baguette (Wheat Demi) for the sandwiches and some English muffins for breakfast (WFM Eng Muffins Or). I also got a dozen eggs, because I was out (Large Brown Eggs, G).
I got a red onion (Organic Red Onions) because I like onion on my roast beef sandwiches, and also a tomato (Tomatoes Roma Cv).
I bought a pear that was supposed to be on special but when they rang it up, it wasn’t on special, so it looks like they gave it to me for free (which is the store policy). That actually happens fairly regularly, but I’m not always paying attention. With the pear, I only bought it because it was on special, I prefer Bosc pears, so I was looking to see if it came through with the special price and it didn’t. So that’s what the two entries for Red D Anjou Og is all about.
I bought a jar of peanut butter (Cruncy Peanut But) because I was out, and also a Bosc pear. I brought multiple bags to get my haul home, so that’s the three bag refunds. And some ham (Pork Ham Steak) and beans for the soup (Bulk Organic Great), as well as some cream cheese, and some bulk flour since I used the last of my flour with the pancakes and needed more to make cornbread. It’s totally not cost-effective to buy bulk flour, but since I walk to the grocery store I have to schedule my flour purchases. Getting home with a normal load of groceries plus a five-pound bag of flour is a challenge sometimes
So Wednesday dinner was very good — mixed green salad with a vinaigrette dressing and ham and bean soup with cornbread. I also made some Plain Jane Sugar Cookies while I was waiting, and then my mom brought cookies that she had made, plus Girl Scout cookies that I had ordered from my niece, so there was definitely no shortage of cookies in my house during Week Ten.
For breakfast on Thursday, my mom had fruit and an English muffin and I slept. Once I got up, we went to King’s for a country ham for my mom to take back home to my dad and the man behind the counter was mixing up this giant batch of country sausage so I decided to get some of that while I was there. Figured we could have it for breakfast on Sunday.
Then we went to The Scrap Exchange so my mom could shop and she could see what was new, then we came home and had a quick lunch of roast beef sandwiches on a wheat baguette and apples and cookies. Then my mom went off to her conference and I went on about my business. (She comes down every year for a conference and stays with me one night, then stays at the conference Thu. – Sat., then is back with me Sunday, then drives home on Monday.)
For dinner I had soup and cornbread, and yogurt with banana and granola for dessert.
On Friday, I had more yogurt/banana/granola (I think this blog is especially fascinating when I eat the same thing for like five days in a row) and then in the afternoon went to Compare, mostly for some cabbage because I wanted to make coleslaw to go with the rest of the roast beef.
So that was fruit to eat (oranges, tangelo, grapefruit) plus the cabbage for coleslaw and some limes and cilantro for Sunday’s dinner. Total $4.23. Gotta love Compare.
Along with the roast beef sandwich and coleslaw, I made oven fried potatoes with a russet potato I bought a while ago. For dessert, I had a grapefruit which I think I thought would dissuade me from eating more cookies, but to no avail. So then I had the real dessert, more cookies.
On Saturday, I made these fabulous cream cheese empanadas from the More-with-Less cookbook that are primarily shortening. They’re basically like homemade pop tarts. I fill them with cream cheese and jam so they might even be better than pop tarts. After the pop tarts I had a bagel with cream cheese and an orange. And a lot of cookies. And was thinking I’d be really glad when the cookies were gone.
And I don’t have any notes about what I ate for dinner on Saturday and I think that means I felt so icky from the empanadas and the cookies that I didn’t really eat dinner. Not sure about that.
On Sunday, my mom was back so I headed back to the store for stuff for breakfast and also for dinner, since I’d invited people over.
I bought a small container of fresh-squeezed orange juice because I wanted juice but I didn’t want a whole quart so I decided it was worth it to pay almost the same amount for a quarter the amount of juice so I would get the amount I wanted. Un-American, I know.
Also I had used up all the flour on the empanadas and the cookies and the cornbread, and decided I wanted to make biscuits so I had to get more of the not cost-effective flour (Organic White Flo).
So for breakfast, we had biscuits and scrambled eggs and country sausage with orange juice.
Everything else was for dinner.
I was planning on making spring rolls and hot and sour shrimp, with sautéed pears and vanilla ice cream for dessert.
So I bought shrimp (EZ Peel Shrimp Raw) and pears (Pears Bartlett Og) and peanuts (Unsalted Peanut Bu) (for the spring rolls) and ice cream (Vanilla 14oz) and celery.
And I attempted to buy dry sherry to marinate the shrimp, but it was before noon and I did not know this but you cannot buy alcohol before noon in North Carolina. Even alcohol you are using to marinate shrimp.
So later in the day we went to the Asian Grocery to get some Shaoshing cooking wine, which is what I usually use to marinate my stir fry meats, but I had recently run out. So I got a refill of that for $2.34.
Guests provided salad and some fizzy nonalcoholic drinks, and I took beer and wine from the Scrap stash. Also Bryant was one of my guests, and she brought some crackers, which she’s been making because she can’t buy crackers because they all have a plastic liner or are wrapped in plastic. And I decided that Bryant’s new art form should be crackers, they were killer good.
So that was it for Week Ten. Something different and exciting — and way more expensive than usual. We’ll have to see how the totals come out. There’s always creative accounting if things are too high. I’m not above that
And this post took way more than 20 minutes to write. Clearly my friend is not documenting her life in quite the level of detail I have committed myself to.