Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Bento - Frugal Style

I dunno why but I love bringing my lunch to work. Maybe it's knowing what I am eating. LIKING what I am eat. Or, maybe it's the Frugal Person in me! What ever the reason, I love bringing my lunch to work. Having an obsession with containers does not help, at all.

I made a list (yes, I love making lists) of all the foods that would make good lunches and divided them into catagories: Main, fruits, veggies, snacks, desserts. I check this list while making my grocery list for the week. Nothing worse than having nothing to pack in your lunch. It's supposed to be FUN to eat your lunch. Chances are if it's not fun and flavorful you won't bring your lunch very often. We have a microwave at work, so that helps when I need to reheat things. I also have a thermos to keep soups hot. Nothing beats soup and a sandwich in a pinch.

I had a fetish for a bento box. I really wanted one. That turned into wanting a Laptop Lunch Box. What an expense. Yikes! Instead, I opted for Fit and Fresh Containers that were purchased at Marshalls. This one is my favorite. I was worried it wasn't going to hold enough. Trust me when I say it does! Leftovers or a sammie in the bottom, chips and fruit/veggies or crackers and cheese in the smaller containers. Sometimes I take apple sauce, yogurt or cereal and eat it mid morning or late afternoon as a snack. The ice pack will keep my foods cold until lunch. Whatever I don't eat, I put in the fridge at work after lunch if it needs to stay cold. Surprisingly, even those smaller containers hold a good amount of food. Having set sized containers also helps with portion control.

Besides being frugal by bringing my own lunch, I am also big on recycling/reusing. Reusable containers cut down on wasted ziplocks. And when packing my lunch, a homemade cloth napkin and real utensils also get tucked into my tote bag. I am sure my co-workers think I am some crazy nerdy dork.

I have also snagged some other Fit and Fresh containers that I love - especially the salad container. Perfect for those bulkier leftovers that need a lot of room. I also tote around these.

I keep the ice packs in the freezer to they are ready to go anytime. These containers are perfect for those errand days. Pack up some veggies, dip, cheese, pepperoni, etc.. make your own lunchables.

My sister and I pack up containers when we do our Cmas shopping. There is no time to stop for a lengthy meal and no extra funds for splurging on lunches when we are power shopping for the holidays. This is one of our favorite traditions. Summer sauage, spicy mustard, crackers, cheese, carrots, dip, celery, grapes... we swing by Sonic and get a drink during 1/2 price time and nibble our power lunches. Then it's off to more shopping after eating an energizing lunch!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Netflix

We did Netflix years ago. Like, 5 plus years ago. Boy, has it changed.

We signed up for the 2 week trial. I think we may end up keeping it a bit longer. We opted for the 1 DVD at a time package. We get a movie near the weekend, enjoy it, mail it back and by the next weekend we have a new movie waiting to be watched. The only drawback is there are a lot of things we want to see. We are kind impatient.

That leads me to the next topic... streaming Netflix! WOW. Besides the 1 DVD at a time, we also get unlimited streaming Netflix. We hooked up the PS3 to the TV and stream the "watch instantly" movies to the TV. Granted, not everything is "watch instantly", but some really good ones are! We have also been catching up on movies we wanted to see, but for some reason we missed them. We are also enjoying watching some old favs.

It's a great way to spend a HOT day or a rainy day.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

The job, uhm, the NEW job

Has it really been over a month that I have been at my new job?? Really? Time sure flies when you are busy.

First, yes, I love my new job. I love going to the office. I love hearing about how everyone spent their weekend, what they like, what they hate, etc. I love talking about current events, hearing their views and their opinions. I love learning my job. The "teacher" is awesome and I'm doing really well. I love the mix of medical work, office work, spread sheets and phone calls, faxes and copies.

Crazy?

Probably.

I can say the move was the best thing for me. I feel very comfortable in my new job, with the people I work with and all the other people I come into contact with on a daily basis. Work is good.

How is the homefront? Trust me, it suffered. My poor bathroom! YIKES. It's clean now. Whew! It was a mess.

It helps to have older kids. It helps it is summer time and they are at home to pick it up and keep up on the chores. You know, unload and load dishes, sweep, vacuum, mop, dust. Yes, these are their normal chores, but it sure helps !!

The only problem is squeezing in the grocery shopping and the cooking of the food. Good thing my husband loves to cook and is home a good bit of the time and does most of the cooking. When he is gone we fall back on simple and light meals.

The only other thing that bothers me is the constant having to pick up and put things back where they go. Like, the nail file or the clippers, the tiny pieces of paper that seems to sprout in the middle of the night on the living room floor, the book that never got put back, the pen, the paper, the magazine, the purse, the keys, the cell phone, the DVD, the... surely you know what I am talking about???

Usually on the weekends we hit the mall, a few other fav stores and go out to dinner. This weekend I vowed to stay home and enjoy the time off. Laundry is always done on the weekends, so that was a given. I have enjoyed just being home and feeling quite rested. Hopefully tomorrow I can get a few chapters in on a book I am reading and make a run to the store for much-needed items.