Thursday, September 29, 2011


Pumpkin Patch 2011

... Because of our traditions, everyone knows who he is and what God expects him to do." -Tevye
Fiddler on the Roof

As a parent I get to share traditions with my children. In addition to daily, and weekly routines, my husband and I regularly take the time to have fun with our children and enjoy each others' company.


Memories of my childhood, often dictate the decisions I make as an adult. Even though I have added my own spin to the experiences I am giving my children. They include the best parts of my childhood traditions. Family time, laughter, learning, food, music, conversation, and photos.

We normally think of family traditions around the holidays, but we should have them year round! Saturday pancakes, bed time stories, Sunday morning church, Friday night pizza, the State Fair, family camping trips, planting the garden, baking cookies, swimming, Black Friday door buster shopping. Anything can become a tradition.

Find what works best for your family. Just be sure to have fun, get to know each other and share stories of your lives and your past.

The weather has turned a bit colder and it is time for some of my favorite traditions. Last year I didn't get a photo of me and the girls at the pumpkin patch, but here are a few for you to enjoy.




Grandma Riddle 2011

Saturday, September 17, 2011

$28.07 for 71 items!!

Coborn's 9-17-11
Subtotal $53.07
Savings $25.00

I used only used 11 coupons too!
$5/$50 Coborns Coupon (expires 9-17-11)
$1/5 Campbells Soup (You will need 5 computers so that you can print 10)

Hand over the $5 coupon first (It is almost always a good idea to have the cashier run the store coupons BEFORE the manufacturer)

Here is what I got:
50 cans of Campbells soup (Tomatoe and Chicken Noodle) $.20 each*
3 bags of Chocolate Chips (Food Club Brand) $1.69 each*
2 5lb bags of flour (Flood Club Brand) $1.99 each*
2 6oz cans of Cooking Spray (Food Club) $1.50 each*
10 26oz cans of Hunts Spaghetti Sauce $.77 each*
4 Long Johns (Yep it must be Saturday morning!) $.75 each*

*Does not include the 20% off that the $5/$50 coupon provided.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Tea for Two

What do the following things have in common:
Arizona Tea 2/$1 at Walgreens
Peanut and Butter Sandwiches for supper
A little girl with 2 skinned knees

A Tea Party of course!
Since Dad is working late, I decided to go easy on supper and have PB&J. However, it was a tough weekend for injuries at our house, so I had to mix it up a bit.

I cut the sandwiches into small triangles, wedged an apple, and set out 2 chocolate sandwich cookies per party goer, on a pretty plate stand, poured some pre-made green tea into a tea pot and we were ready.

A super easy and fun way to have dinner.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

All this for just $.48 !!(Out of Pocket)

Made quick trip to Cambridge this afternoon before the Vikings Game. I wanted the jig saw so I can make some decorations for Christmas. Here is what I grabbed.

Jigsaw $14.99 (plus I get a $5 mail in rebate)
Grabber $2 (Plus I get a $2 mail in rebate)
NPT Brass Coupler $.98
I used a $18.00 Rebate I have been rolling for a while. OOP $0.00 (and I still have $.03 on it and get to mail in a rebate for $7 more!)
***Turning an $18 rebate into $7 is not my best deal. I will be sure to pair the $7 rebate, when I get it, with some coupons so I can build it back up without spending more to do so. Just keep reading posts to see how I do it. :-)

2 Crest Toothpastes 2/$5 (plus I get a $3 Register Reward)
Used 2 $1/1 coupons from the Sept. Proctor & Gamble insert
4 Arizona Teas 2/$1
Used a $5 register reward from my last post, and paid $.48 after taxes and have $3 for next time.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Getting Ready for fall

It is Labor Day weekend which means fall is around the corner and I will need to have freezer space for venison. So I spent yesterday attempting to make space in the freezer!

I started earlier in the week by pulling out a turkey to thaw. Friday night I put it in the counter top roasting oven with some Grill Mates Montreal Chicken Seasoning and a couple of onion quarters set the temp to 325 and went to bed. I woke up around 6:20 to the smell of roasted turkey.

I then got busy. I pulled everything out of my kitchen freezer to see what I had to work with. (I still need to thoroughly go through the BIG freezer, but I did use up several things from there yesterday too.) I then washed out the freezer, did a bit of reorganizing. And then got to work cooking.

My plan was to make as many dishes as I could and put them in the freezer so later when I was busy I could easily just throw them in the oven and Walla! a homemade meal. I was attempting to use up as many items from the freezer and garden as I could as well. Many of the dishes would still be great without the extras so I noted when I added something just because it was there. :-) Here is what I made

Ham & Cheese Hashbrowns
1 pkg shredded hashbrown potatoes
1 Can cream of celery soup
1 can of half and half milk (use the empty soup can to measure)
8oz of Sour Cream
1 tsp kosher Salt
1 tsp fresh ground pepper
1 medium yellow onion (white would work I just had yellow from the garden)
1 lb fully cooked ham - cubed
4 oz Mozzarella Cheese
4 oz Cheddar Cheese

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Pour into 9x13 pan. Cover with foil (I use 2 layers of regular foil or 1 layer of heavy duty)

Cinnamon Rolls
Layer the following items in order in your Bread Machine (all items should be room temperature)
1 Cup water
2 Tbsp Butter
3 Cups flour
1/4 Cup sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
2 1/2 tsp of bread machine yeast or 1 packet of quick yeast
Set machine to Large, Sweet, Dough and came back when it beeped.
Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to approx 9x9
   -Spread with Butter
   -Sprinkle with 1/3 Cup of sugar and 2 tsp. cinnamon
Roll into tight roll, and pick edge to seal
Cut into 1 inch slices
Place on tray in freezer to 'flash freeze' for a couple hours.
Store in airtight Freezer bag
When you are ready to bake, pull out of freezer and let rise (overnight) make 375 for 25-30 min
Combine 1 cup confectioners sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 1-2 tbsp milk for glaze.

Roasted Bread Cubes/Bread crumbs
I had SEVERAL packages of hot dog buns in the freezer from an event earlier in the summer. I cubed them and placed them on a baking sheet. Placed in the oven set oven to 350. When the oven reached temp. I turned it off and let the crumbs dry out. I made 3 batches.
I used 1 batch in the next recipe, and put the rest in my food processor and made bread crumbs.

Pheasant with CranApple dressing
2 Pheasant Breasts
5 1/2 Cups cubed/roasted bread (would be good with some corn bread mixed in)
1 medium union chopped
4 Tbsp Butter
1/4 Cup chopped Cranberries
1/2 Cup chopped Apples
1 tsp. Rosemary
1 tsp. Thyme
1 1/2 tsp. Sage
2 Cups Turkey Stock (You could use chicken broth)
Kosher Salt and Fresh Pepper to taste.
Combine all dry ingredients add Broth until moist. Place in 9x9 pan lay Pheasant Breasts over dressing and Cover with foil. (When you heat, bake covered at 350. Approx 1 hour. use meat thermometer if meat is done all is done.)

I had to thaw some apples for CranApple dressing so decided to use the remainder and make a cobbler.

Apple Cobbler
8 Cups of slice Apples (mostly thawed)
1/2 Cup Sugar
1 Tbsp Cinnamon
Toss all together in 9x13 Pan
Cover with Struessel topping:
    1 Cup flour
    1 stick butter
    1 Cup sugar
    Blend in food Processor. (Can make extra and store in Freezer for quick dutch apple pies later.)

Lake Superior Salmon Patties (My husband had great luck on a fishing trip this summer!)
1lb cooked salmon- Remove bones/skin (I just baked it)
1 small yellow onion chopped (White would work too)
1/4 tsp dill weed
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/4 tsp lemon Juice
1/4 Cup finely chopped summer squash (I had a TON in my garden to use up)
2 eggs slightly beaten
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
1/2 tsp each of kosher salt and ground pepper

Form into patties, coat in corn meal and flash freeze. Store in Freezer Bag (Heat a small amount of oil in a skillet, cook patties in oil until both sides are golden brown. I like to serve with Hollandaise or a Bearnaise sauce)

Turkey Pot Pie
1 15oz can of potatoes - sliced
1 lb pkg of mixed Veggies
1 Turkey breast - cubed
3 cups of turkey gravy - cooled
-combine in a 9x13 pan
1 pkg refrigerated Crescent Rolls
 - top with crescent dough rolled into a sheet.
Cover with foil. Bake covered at 350. (I would thaw in fridge over night before baking)

Turkey Tetrazzini
I added
3 Cups cubed summer squash
3 Tbsp of Turkey Gravy

Turkey Sandwiches
The kids got hungry for lunch so I buttered some whole wheat bread put some cool turkey, salt and pepper and cut in half. (I like to cut on the diagonal, how about you?)

BBQ Turkey Soup
 4 cups Turkey stock (Could use chicken)
1 1/4 Cup Turkey diced (Could use chicken or leftover BBQ Chicken or pork)
1/2 Green pepper, diced
1/2 Cup Corn
2 Cup Tomatoes diced
1/2 med. Onion diced
1 tsp minced garlic
8oz can black beans
1/2 Cup BBQ sauce
1/2 Tbsp. Hot sauce
1/2 Tbsp. Molasses
Salt and Pepper to taste

You could combine all in a crockpot over low heat for 6 hours. I mixed mine and then placed in 4, 1 Quart canning jars and canned at 11 lbs pressure for 85 minutes.

1 Very Large summer squash - cubed
1 Very Large yellow squash - cubed
1 large eggplant
1 medium yellow onion - chopped
1 red onion - chopped
1 Red bell pepper - chopped
1 Yellow bell pepper - chopped
1 Green bell pepper - chopped
4 Cups diced Tomatoes
4 Cups sliced Carrots (Not traditionally in ratatouille, but in my garden)
1 jar of spaghetti sauce
1/2 bottle of red wine
(This was a GIANT batch, because my veggies had grown so big. If you are better at tending your garden or you are getting your squash from the store, I would cut all remaining ingredients in half)

You could combine all in a crockpot to simmer on low for 6 hours. I combined all and placed in 7, 1 Quart canning jars placed a dash of *kosher salt and ground pepper in each jar and canned at 11 lbs of pressure for 85 minutes.
*Kosher salt is important when canning DO NOT use iodized table salt when canning. If you are new to canning I HIGHLY recommend my favorite canning book Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving. Canning is a science and can produce deadly results if done incorrectly.

Rhubarb Crisp
8 Cups Rhubarb - chopped
1 tsp Vanilla
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
3 Tbsp Corn Starch
Combine in 9x13 pan and stir thoroughly
crunch topping:
1 Cup Butter - melted
1 1/2 Cup flour
1 1/2 Cup Oatmeal (I like regular oats not quick oats for this)
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp. Cinnamon
Mix in bowl and crumble over filling.
Cover with foil and *freeze. (Bake 350 for 1 hour)
*Freezing helps to break down the rhubarb, If you are going to skip the freezing. Than add 1 Cup of water and cook over the stove until it thickens, pour into 9x13 pan, crumble topping and Bake.

Turkey and Rice
Remaining Turkey breast - cubed (4-5 cups)
Remaining Turkey Gravy (3 cups)
Combine and serve over 3 cups prepared Rice.

Butternut Squash (could do the same with acorn squash)
2 Butternut Squash - Cubed
1/4 Cup of Butter.
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar

Remove skin from Squash before cubing, (either with a peeler or slice it like you would a melon).  Place in a baking dish (since I was freezing it I used a 9x13 aluminum pan again.) Cut small pads of butter and place on top of the squash. Sprinkle brown sugar over top. Cover. Bake Covered for approx. 1 hour

I didn't get as many dishes prepared as I had hoped. But I was able to clear off 1 entire shelf in the Big freezer. (Since Freezers run more efficiently when full though, I HAD to go to Coborn's and pick up a couple of the Kemps Vanilla Ice Cream pails that were on sale for $3.99 each. I will just have to force the family to eat it before the first deer comes!)