Exhaustion

Work is so exhausting.  I thought last year that it would eventually slow down, however, it has not.  I work a lot and am getting very tired of it.  For the past month, I have refused to go to work on weekends because my kids have soccer games every Saturday and I literally have to be up before 7 since 99% of their games start at 8:30 and it is non stop until about 5PM.  Add in that I’m at work by 6:00 AM everyday and often times don’t leave until 5 or 6PM, well, you get the picture – I’m extremely exhausted.
With this exhaustion, I have slacked big time on working out.  I am just too tired.  I hate excuses.  I hate them.  I shouldn’t be this tired all the time, yet I am.  I know a big part of it is stress and another part of it is the fact that I’m not running to counter the stress.  I haven’t ran in about a month.  Sigh.  I am going to make myself go running tomorrow.

On the money front, I have still been bringing coffee from home and packing my lunches every day. Actually, I’ve been packing breakfast, snacks and lunch because I’m there so long.  Even though I haven’t been working out consistently I have still been eating pretty healthy.  I pack my lunches every Sunday night and literally just grab each morning.  The only thing I have to do is make my latte and I’m good to go in the morning.  For a really lazy person like me, this is a Godsend.  Thursday is my pay day and I’ve already written all my checks and will mail them all out tomorrow.   I know everyone gives me a hard time about checks but after a lot of bad luck with auto deductions on everything except my mortgage and car insurance, I’d rather just write my checks and be completely and totally old fashioned.

Have a great night everyone.

PS, I’m fixing the side bars but having problems and those numbers are not accurate.

Grocery shopping…UGH!

Maybe it’s because I’m uber cranky and my schedule was insane today, but I am beat. Completely drained.  In fact, I’m writing this reclined in bed with my eyes only halfway opened.  I didn’t get to grocery shop this weekend so I had to do it today because we had only 1 avocado and 3 baby carrots in the fridge. Anyhow, I went to Costco & Whole Foods today.  I really hate that the groceries at Whole Foods is so expensive.  I only ventured in there because I went and saw my therapist today and her office is right next to Whole Foods. Below is what I bought:

Whole Foods (ahem Paychecks):

  • Salad mix with spinach
  • broccoli rabe that was on sale for .99lb.
  • organic collard greens at $1.29lb

Total:  $12.23

 

Costco

  • rotesserie chicken (way too tired to cook a damn thing today since I’ve been working since 5:30AM & didn’t get home until 8:45PM)
  • ground turkey
  • tilapia
  • red bell peppers
  • persian cucumbers
  • baby spinach
  • strawberries
  • blueberries
  • pineapples
  • red delicious apples
  • baby carrots
  • grapes
  • kiwi
  • bananas
  • roma tomatoes
  • zuccini
  • PAM cooking spray
  • soy milk
  • greek yogurt
  • Sweet potato fries
  • turkey ham for sandwiches
  • sandwich thins bread
  • raw almonds
  • gluten free chicken sausages for the baby
  • brown rice medley mix
  • toilet paper

Total: $190.89
Menu for the next 2 weeks;

Breakfast:

  • egg white omelet with red bell peppers, broccoli rabe, spinach & ham
  • yogurt with oatmeal and berries on top
  • breakfast sandwich w/whole wheat english muffin, ham & red bell peppers, spinach
  • protein shake w/banana & handful of almonds

Lunch & Dinner

  • grilled chicken salad w/red bell peppers, carrots, cucumbers, olives, apples, almonds & my homemade vinegarette.
  • grilled tilapia w/mango salso, brown rice
  • grilled tilapia w/brown rice, broccoli rabe, asparagus
  • homemade turkey meatballs with collard greens
  • homemade turkey sandwich w/carrots, spinach, onions, red bell peppers blended in w/whole wheat sandwich thins
  • grilled chicken w/vinegar & olive oil over grilled asparagus and grilled zuccini

Snacks

  • raw almonds
  • yogurt
  • fruit
  • protein shake
  • whole wheat crackers
  • homemade hummus
  • popcorn

I need all this food to last me until roughly around March 1st. UGH, I hate how much it costs me to eat healthy.  On the plus side, I’ve lost 2.2 lbs this week 🙂

Hopefully, we’re on the same page now

I took your advice on my last post and decided that the hubby and I need to talk it out.  Boy, did we ever.

I grabbed the remainder of the bills for January and I’m so disappointed in myself.  Since I only started to really pay attention to our bank accounts and tracking our money towards the end of December, I missed a whole bunch of bills that needed to be paid.  Our utilities and cable are doubled up because I forgot to pay them last month!  Below are the remaining bills:

Based on my calculations, we will only have $200 for gas and groceries after all of these bills are paid unless I transfer some money out of savings.  The good news is that my car doesn’t really need that much gas since I only drive about 15 miles a day.  Hubby’s car, however, will need to be filled up at least once a week since his commute is brutal.  I told DH that I know we can make the $200 stretch since we’ve got lots of frozen meat.  I will just need to stretch our grocery budget by cooking out of the pantry and using up the rest of the food that’s in there.  We are completely low on veggies so I will have to buy strictly from the Asian Grocery store since it’s a lot cheaper than the regular supermarket.

Then, I realized that we are out of toilet paper!  Lord, does it ever end once it starts raining?  That is the ONE thing that I am allowed to buy at Costco this weekend. We will not be leaving our house for any reason at all this weekend because that’s where I feel like we do most of our mindless spending! I’ve texted my sisters and friends if they want to see us this weekend, they will need to bring the food because we are on a budget until February!

I usually have $650 set aside for savings automatically and I really don’t want to take that money out unless there is a dire emergency.  I think if we plan carefully, we will be able to make it to February 1st without touching the emergency money.

 Anyhow, back to my talk with the hubby.  I showed him the actual bills and I pulled out the bank statement online.  I had him calculate what we had left over after our mandatory bills were paid for.  Boy, were his eyes glazed when they looked back at me.  He said he had no idea that’s how much we would have to pay out next week and thought that when he checked the balance in the account that bills had already been paid (insert eye roll here from me).  I told him that he spends money faster than I can pay the bills.  Next Wednesday, he will sit down and pay the bills and update the check register so he knows how much money we have left over to spend.
I’m hopeful that this opened up his eyes but until a few more months go by I can’t really say this worked!

 

Cooking Despite a Hectic Schedule

I’ve been getting a lot of comments about cooking despite my hectic schedule.  If you’ve read through some of my posts, you’ll see that my schedule is crazy.  I’m up at 4:30 in the morning, getting ready and finally making lattes for the Mr. and I before we leave the house everyday.  From now until mid-March, I have classes Monday & Wednesday until 8:10.  On Tuesdays, Thursdays & Fridays I am in the school library studying from 3:30 until about 5:30 or 6.   I can’t study at home because my husband and kids jump all over me the second I walk through the doors, so I have to devote that time to get my studies/reading done.

On my library days, I run after I study.  I try to fit in a 3-5 mile run because I love it and I can’t imagine not running.  I could probably use that hour to do something else but this makes me calm, clears my thoughts and relieves a lot of stress! I shower at the gym and by the time I walk through the doors, I’m feeling normal and unstressed!

I’m digressing and rambling about my day when I really want to talk about cooking!  My babies have severe food allergies and this is a key reason why we seem to struggle in lowering our monthly grocery bill.  The two older kids are allergic to corn, wheat, soy, nuts but deathly allergic to peanuts.  My youngest has the worst allergies – she’s allergic to all of the above plus milk, actually all dairy,  and soy. My hubby and I are not allergic to anything but we have to cater our meals to the kids or else it wouldn’t be fair to them.  We eat a pretty clean diet – meaning not a lot of packaged, preservative laden foods.  I shop at several stores all within a 2 mile radius of each other – the Asian grocer, Costco, Trader Joes & Fred Meyers (equivalent to a Kroeger, I think).  Below is a snap shop of my grocery list every other week:

Asian Grocer:

  • Chines broccoli
  • Radish
  • Okra
  • Bok Choy
  • Ong Choy
  • Ginger
  • Cilantro
  • Onions
  • Green Onions
  • Green Papaya
  • Beef Bones
  • Soy Sauce
  • Rice Vinegar
  • Hoisin Sauce
  • Siracha Sauce
  • Fish Sauce
  • Oyster Sauce
  • Rice noodles

Costco:

  • Frozen boneless chicken
  • Chicken thighs
  • Talapia
  • Salmon
  • Turkey Burgers
  • Sweet Potato Fries
  • Ground Turkey
  • Red Bell Peppers
  • Spinach
  • Romaine Lettuce
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Apples
  • Bananas
  • Avocados
  • Oranges
  • Soy Milk (for me as I’m lactose intolerant)
  • 2% milk for the two older babies
  • 5 dozen eggs
  • Pam cooking spray
  • Turkey ham
  • 100% wheat sandwich thins
  • Olive Oil
  • Baby carrots

Trader Joes

  • Rice milk for my little one
  • Dried cranberries
  • Slivered almonds
  • Almond butter
  • Gluten free bread
  • Squash
  • Asparagas
  • Persian cucumbers
  • Morning Star sausage patties
  • Gluten free Apple Sausages

Fred Meyers

  • Collard greens
  • Mustard Greens
  • Celery
  • Sausage Links
  • whatever other veggies I can’t buy at Costco or Trader Joes

I cook breakfast, lunch and dinner almost daily for my family.  The key for me is to keep everything I cook easy and fast.  I also like to prep my veggies ahead of time according to what I have on the menu.  For example, I chop up the veggies and if I know I’m going to do stir fry one week, I slice up the chicken and put it in a zip lock bag.  That way when I’m ready to cook there is minimal prep time.

We generally eat the following:

  • egg white scramble or a omelet.
  • My little one gets apple sausage and fruit.
  • Lunch for me is whatever we have for dinner or a salad.
  • My little ones only want sandwiches – we only use mustard, and we pile it high with veggies.
  • Fresh fruit and veggies as snacks.
  • For dinner, we always have a some sort of protein (fish, chicken, etc) and at least 2 vegetable sides.
  • I make a lot of stir fries.
  • I make pho from scratch on the weekends.
  • I make turkey meatballs in large quantities & freeze half.
  • Soups
  •  Chili