Friday, October 26, 2007

Financial and Time restraints.......

I got an email last week for a lady who wants me to come teach a class on financial and time restraints in the area of food storage. I called her up and “picked her brain” as to what she really wanted in that area. The points she wants me to get across is how to shop to save money and how to cook quickly in this fast paced world of working mothers and busy families…..It didn’t take me long to come up with what I wanted to convey. As a member of the LDS church, the Mormons, we believe that we need to have a storage of food for times of emergency. I have been teaching classes on this subject now for about 20 years or so. The basics would include wheat, rice, oatmeal, beans, powdered milk, flour, macaroni, salt, shortening and etc. My mind started running and here are a few things that I came up with.

1) If you have a family, buy in bulk. - With fall and winter upon us oatmeal is a great breakfast item that can be purchased in bulk at a much reduced rate. Why pay grocery store prices when you can buy a 25 lb. bag for about ¼ the price. The last couple of days, I have been cooking a big pot of oatmeal in the mornings. Bonnie likes hers with butter and brown sugar and I like mine with butter and cinnamon. TF likes his with butter, maple syrup and brown sugar. It cooks quickly and is good for you.

2) Want to save time? A crock pot is a girls best friend. - At night, before going to bed, put 1 cup of whole wheat kernels in your crock pot, add 3 cups of water and a pinch of salt. Turn the crock pot on low and let cook over night. In the morning, about 30 minutes before eating, you can add some chopped dehydrated apples, to sweeten the taste. You could also add some raisins, or chopped walnuts or whatever your family likes to eat. The left over cereal can be stored in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, for three weeks. I use leftovers to extend meatloaf, or I mash it and use it like I would refried beans. There is so much you can do with wheat and I have recipes galore. Talk about cost efficient, I can purchase a 25 lb. bag of white wheat for around $ 6.00.

My sister is a single mother, who works outside the home for a living. She was coming home at night and trying to cook a complete meal for her family. I asked her if she had a crock pot and she said yes. I said, “Barb, why don’t you use it?” I started giving her easy recipes that she could fix using her crock pot and now she does 90% of her cooking in it. Now she comes home and all she has to do is make a quick salad and dinner is ready. It has been a life saver for her and it saves her precious time. Tip from Lucy: Rival makes a crock pot that has a base unit with a pot that sits on top of it. The pot can be used on the stove top and the base unit can be used to fry eggs on. This is the best crock pot that I have ever seen. I have had several crock pots and this is by far the best I have ever used.

3) Another way to save money is to shop with coupons – Grocery store coupons have saved me a bundle on groceries. I take advantage of sales and double/triple couponing. A word of advice: Buy only things that you are going to use. Don’t buy something just because you have a coupon. If you are not going to use it, don’t buy it.

4) The famous last words, at every class that I teach are, Store what you eat, eat what you store and rotate, rotate, rotate………

I have other ideas for the class, but this is just a sampling of what I will teach….I hope it has given you some ideas… Have a great week.


At 8:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Before my tow oldest moved out the crock pot was great. Mine has a timer and goes on warmer after it is done cooking. Nothing better then coming home to a meal.


At 12:52 PM, Blogger LZ Blogger said...

Lucy ~ I sure agree about the oatmeal! Mrs. LZ and I have Oatmeal almost every day for breakfast. It is a GREAT day starter and with a piece of whole wheat toast with peanut butter... it seems top stick with us for several hours. ~ jb///

At 1:29 PM, Blogger Diane J. said...

I love oatmeal - the old fashioned hearty kind, not the quick cooking stuff!

Regarding Emmy, if she doesn't have allergies she'll be an exception to the rest of the family. I think all of us have allergies in one form or another. Plus she's still teething so that might have something to do with it.

Have a great Friday and weekend, Lucy! ;o)



At 7:34 PM, Blogger Jahn said...

"The basics would include wheat, rice, oatmeal, beans, powdered milk, flour, macaroni, salt, shortening and etc."

I've got all of that except the shortening and the etc. Just can't find any good etc these days.

And I'm still looking for some good scratch. I hear it's good for making lots of stuff.

At 12:04 AM, Blogger Lucy Stern said...

day by day - I love using my crockpot....Even with the kids gone, I will cook a whole chicken in it and use it for several meals.

lz blogger - I love eating oatmeal on a cold winter morning....

diane - I use the old fashioned oats too. The less processed, the better for you. I am glad that Emily is doing better.

Jahn - alright Jahn, when I wrote this blog it was 5:00am. and my brain still wasn't completely awake. I was trying to remember what was in the one month kit and I had a brain freeze so I used the all and encompassing "etc" to end my sentence....BTW: good etc, is hard to find. I do like cooking from "scratch" and I can get pretty creative with it too.

Are you sure you can't come for Thanksgiving?

At 6:37 AM, Blogger Merle said...

Hi Lucy ~~ Good post and good advice.
I also enjoyed reading the two previous posts. Thank for sharing
the knowledge you have.
Thanks for your comments and I am glad you enjoyed the lunch line with God watching the apples. Take care,
Love, Merle.

At 8:27 AM, Blogger Leslie said...

Another oatmeal tip is to add sliced banana to your bowl. My kids love that.

Leslie's Coupon Praises:

1. I am the coupon queen! I even have one of those little expanding file organizers in my purse. And I only snip coupons I know I'll use (Pampers, Sparkle paper towels, Dial soap, etc.). Sometimes I do clip a coupon for a product I've never tried but have wanted to try (a new shampoo or household cleaning product), and having the coupon makes it easier for me to try it.

2. I also have myself signed up on a few mailing lists to receive coupons via snail mail...

Bath & Body Works sends little coupon cards for free products, sometimes you have to spend $10, but I love all their products anyway and shop there every few months.

No coupon needed for Clinique Bonus Week...I use Clinique cosmetics, because after trying every cosmetic company out there, drug store or department store counter, Clinique is the only brand that doesn't make me break out. They send me a postcard every time they have their free gift w/ purchase time, and that is the only time I buy anything. I find myself being able to use all the free stuff I get, even the make-up bag, so I don't have to buy often.

I also clip coupons for restaurants. Buy one meal get one free coupons are great, as are free kids meal with purchase of adult meal coupons. We don't eat out a lot, but you never know when you might be out and about shopping with your family and don't want to drive all the way home just to make a sandwich, or maybe you're in another town (like Pearland for us) around lunchtime.

Now here's the great story of my coupon clipping and why I encourage everyone to do it:

Just after my son (first child) was born, I did a little experiment over the course of 6 months. I wrote down every single penny I saved using coupons, formula checks/vouchers from Enfamil's website, cents-off gasonline using a store's frequent shopper card, etc. I added it all up and divided by 6 to get my monthly average. Get this, I SAVED AROUND $485 EACH MONTH WITH COUPONS!! After showing my husband my results, he told me I should be allowed to keep some of my savings to buy myself something nice each month. Of course, I usually spend my savings on the kids -- Christmas is a big production at my house thanks to coupon savings.

So clipping coupons is definitely worth the ten minutes each Sunday to sit down with your scissors and snip away. I got my coupon organizer at Target years ago for about a dollar. It came with about 10 different file sections and little sticker tabs you can write on. Divide the first few sections into foods (snacks and beverages, canned goods, dairy and meat, cereals and breads, etc.). Then divide the last few sections into non-foods (OTCs and personal care [ex. shampoo and pain reliever and bath soap, etc.], laundry and dishwashing products, paper and plastic items [ex. paper towels and cling wrap or aluminum foil, etc.], household cleaning products, etc.). I also have a section for restaurant coupons and one for odds-n-ends like batteries and a section for store-only coupons like the Bath & Body Works ones I talked about.

Well, I think I've written a long enough follow-up post for Lucy (Hee hee!) -- Now go clip some coupons!!

At 10:18 AM, Blogger Susie said...

These are great tips. I think it would be very interesting to take one of your classes..

At 10:39 PM, Blogger Paul said...

I'd forgotten about crock pots. Our mom went through a phase when I was in h.s. and she was working late a lot, and that was really useful. By the time she got home, we could all just eat without her having to cook; plus by then the smell had been driving us crazy for a couple hours...

At 7:46 AM, Blogger Hathor said...

Pressure cookers are great for when you forget and need to shorten cooking time. I think dry beans do better in a pressure cooker than a crock pot.

At 8:56 AM, Blogger Lucy Stern said...

merle - thanks for coming by.

leslie - I could write a whole blog on couponing. I appreciate all of your comments because it is true. I have saved a bundle with coupons. For the last several years the entertainment book had coupons for saving at Krogers and Randals. If you purchased $ 50.00 in groceries, you would get $ 5.00 off. I learned that you had to give your Ent. Coupon first before giving your other coupons, because if it went under $ 50.00 the coupon would not take. I haven't bought this years coupon book yet, so I don't know if it is still there. I love those Entertainment books, great coupons.

susie - if you lived in Houston, you would invite you to come.

paul - the smell can drive you crazy.....OH josh! Maybe I am gaining a few extra pounds from the smell....

Hathor - I have never used a pressure cooker, but I have a friend that uses one all the time, I think I am afraid of it. I really should give it a try.

At 1:18 PM, Blogger BarbaraFromCalifornia said...

Lucy, I am so happy you decided to write an intelligent article on this subject.

I am going to post some of your tips on my on fridge. It seems as if so much of the food we buy lately does go to waste, especially those items that are perishable.

Thanks for the topic.

At 10:48 AM, Blogger Oh great One said...

Whole wheat kernels? I don't know that I've ever seen them. Where would I find those?

Great ideas by the way!

At 5:41 PM, Blogger Lapa said...




In the 1st centenary of his birth



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