Menu Planning Board {DIY}

I promised a tutorial of the Menu Planning Board I showed a picture of in the Summertime Eat Down Your Pantry Challenge.  So, here it is...  It's a fairly simple project, and you can probably use lots of things that you already have around the house...

What's Needed:
An 8.5" x 11" picture frame or certificate frame
A piece of scrapbook paper to fit in the frame
7 Clothespins (or 5, if you only want to do a weekday plan)
Scrapbook Paper to put on the the clothespins
Mod Podge
Days of the Week Letters (S, M, T, W, etc.)
An envelope or make your own out of scrapbook paper
Plain white paper (cut into strips)
Laminator and laminating sheets
Hot Glue Gun
Dry Erase Marker

1.  Put your decorative paper inside the picture frame.

2.  Cut strips of paper as big as the clothespins, for 7 clothespins.

3.  Apply Mod Podge to the clothespin itself, then attach the strips of paper to the clothespins.  Apply Mod Podge over the paper.  Let dry over night.

4.  While waiting for the clothespins to dry, make the slips of paper that will be used to write the daily dinners on.  All you do is cut pieces of paper to the size that fits best with your picture frame.  Put them into a laminating sheet and run it through the laminator.   Then, cut the pieces out after laminated.

5.  Next, hot glue the clothespins to the glass of the picture frame.

6.  Then, hot glue the days of the week letters to the clothespins.

7.  Then, glue the envelope to the glass.  And, put the laminated slips into the 'pocket'.

8.  When you've planned your meals for the week, then write them on the laminated slips with a dry
erase marker, and clothespin them to the appropriate day of the week.

9.  Rotate meals as necessary.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial, and are jumping at the bit to make one yourselves!!  Let me know how it turns out...

How do you make your meals "available" for your family to see (so they're not asking "What's for dinner?" all the time??

Thanks for stopping by!

Summer Subway Art {Free Printable}

I have always been enthralled by the huge popularity of 'subway art' right now.  A bunch of words together on a page?  Yes...  But, the really cool thing about subway art is the meaning of the words and how the creator of that piece chooses to place them... 

This new found craze of 'subway art' actually stems from the Subway Signs of the 20th Century.  (The 20th century was the period between January 1, 1901 and December 31, 2000.)  Seems so long ago, huh?  Subway Signs actually had all of the names of the stops on that particular train's line.  Because of the length of the different names of the stops, each word was a different size (even if it was the same font).  Hence, the look of the 'subway art' craze.

So, this is my first venture into designing my own subway art.  Let me know if you like it or if there are any suggestions on changes or additions...

Summer is here!!

Celebrate summer with this fun printable!!

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4th of July Outdoor Wreath

I love wreaths!  I don't know why I am so very obsessed with them because I never have been--other than a real pine wreath at Christmas time on our door.

So, I made a simple, but elegant and refined.  Here's how I did it...

Items Needed:
Vine Wreath form (I used one I purchased at the Dollar Tree)

Red, White & Blue Garland (I purchased 2 sets at JoAnn when they were on sale)

Blue & Red Wire Ribbon with White Stars on them 

Red, White & Blue Felt Stars 
(you can make them yourself, but I purchased mine on sale at JoAnn)

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Summertime Pantry Challenge 2013: PLAN MEALS

This part of the Challenge has been the most difficult so far.  You just feel overwhelmed by the idea of trying to plan meals with only the things that you have in your house.

Then, I just started to sort out our recipes based on how close the ingredients matched to what I had on hand.  I laminated empty pieces of paper so I can use them with dry erase markers to switch out meals each week.  These items are attached to the Menu Board I recently made:

{I'll post a tutorial on our board soon! (sMiLe)}

So, here is how I sorted the meals that fit in this Challenge:

1st Round--Exact matches on recipes to what is in our pantry/freezer.

2nd Round--Good matches on recipes and pantry items, meaning that there are 1 or 2 ingredients that I would have to purchase.

3rd Round--Decent matches.  These were last to get added into our meal plan choices.  So, they will be used towards the end of the month.

Seeing the names of the meals in front of you on the strips of paper and knowing how the recipes fit in with what you currently have is so much easier that not having any semblance of organization...

How do you meal plan?  Inquiring minds want to know...


Summertime Pantry Challenge 2013: INVENTORY

This part of the Challenge was not actually that difficult for me.  Just a bit time consuming.  Like others taking this Challenge, I cannot believe all of the hidden "frozen leftovers" that I found and cannot use.  I need a more manageable way of keeping an idea of what is going into our 2 freezers, etc....  I am on a mission to try to figure that out during this Challenge. 

Take Inventory:
I inventoried our inside fridge and freezer and pantry.  I also took an inventory of our outside freezer, our outside refrigerator, and the non-perishables that we store outside.  Here is the printable that I used; I found it at Mom on a Mission.   

The first page says Freezer Inventory, the second does not have a header.  So, I used the first page for both freezers/fridges and the second page for pantry items.  I found that to be the easiest and most organized way to see what we have...

Will you be doing an inventory?  Let me know in the comments below!


Summertime Pantry Challenge 2013: GOALS

So, this is my first time doing a Challenge like this one, and the first part of the Challenge is to make goals.  Here are my goals for these next 2 weeks--well, pretty much the next month. 


1.     Inventory the pantry, the freezers (we have two) and fridge.

2.   To make and keep a large percentage of our meal plans to what we have on-hand.

3.   Make meal preparation lists (i.e., meal plans).

4.   To lower our grocery spending.  

5.   Eat as much as we can out of the freezer in the garage.

6.    Try to buy more fresh fruit and veggies.

7.    To eat breakfast & lunch at home / or BOO (bring our own), if we go somewhere.

I want to hear about your goals!  Post them below...  I'll keep you updated on mine!


Introducing the Summertime Pantry Challenge 2013

Jessica over at LifeasMOM (her day-to-day life as a mom of 6 kiddos) has another blog called Good Cheap Eats.   There, she is facilitating a challenge for the summer.  It called the Summertime Pantry Challenge 2013.

The challenge pretty much consists of NOT buying groceries like you normally would, but focusing on what you already have in the pantry.  Jessica is only doing a 2 week Pantry Challenge this time around--she usually does a month.  So, I figured it was a better time than ever to go along for the ride!!  Is anyone with me?  It starts on July 7th (Sunday) and ends on July 20th (Saturday).  Seems doable, right?

So, the first order of duty is to make goals for yourself during this challenge.  I am in the process of doing those right now, so look out for another post shortly!!

Thanks much for stopping by...