FF #5

As part of my big plan to become one of those amazing people who work for themselves (YAY!), I've decided to bring back the much needed Frugal Friday series!  After ending the series last year, I fell off of my frugality routine and went back to the same old paycheck to paycheck style of living that I was on before.  Shameful I tell ya!  I've never really been all that great at creating a budget and sticking to it.  I'm working on it now though!  I signed up with Mint.com (which is amazing by the way.  SO neat!), and it's made it so much easier to track where my money is going every month.  I'm ashamed to admit that aside from bills, most of my money was spent on "Dining Out".  No wonder I've gained 10 pounds over the last year!  Geeez!  So my Frugal Friday tip (and new goal for myself) is to cook more meals at home and spend less on fast food and eating out. 

It's so easy to fall into the routine of grabbing something on my way to work, ordering something for lunch with all of my coworkers, and then grabbing something quick on my way home from work.  Aside from the fact that I'm incredibly lazy when it comes to cooking for myself, I also don't pack enough snacks to keep myself from being super hungry by the time I get off work.  My shift is normally 10 hours with a 15 minutes lunch break thrown in.  When clock-out time rolls around, the last thing I feel like doing is cooking.

Instead of swinging by the donut shop (which in my case is directly across the street from my workplace),Starbucks, or any other quick stop breakfast place you can think of, make something quick and healthy at home instead.  Here are a few of my favorites:
  • Smoothies
  • Wheat Toast with (Almond or Peanut) Butter and Sliced Bananas
  • Oatmeal or Grits with Fresh Fruit
  • Good ol' Scrambled Eggs with Bacon
  • Healthy Cereal (my favorite is Cheerios with Sliced Bananas or Strawberries!)
Instead of spending the extra money on one-time meals with Co-workers, pack a lunch instead!  Here are some of my favorites:
  • Sandwich or Wrap with a side of Veggies & Dip
  • Soup & Salad
  • Pasta Salad
  • Tuna or Chicken Salad with Pretzel Crisps and Veggies
  • Leftovers from whatever was for Dinner the night before.
This one is the one that gets me ALL the time.  As I said before, I'm hungry by the time I get off work and the last thing I want to do is have to spend the time cooking when I get home.  The solution for me is going to have to be 1) taking more snacks to work, and 2) just DO IT!  So here are a few ideas for cook at home dinners that are quick & easy to make and inexpensive as well.
  • Pasta & Salad
  • Panini Sandwich with side of your choice
  • Baked Potato
  • Tacos
  • Stir Fry
I dont' know about you, but I absolutely love snacking.  I've been failing lately on bringing snacks with me to work...I don't know how to explain this-considering my love of snacks, but it's true.  Perhaps making a pretty sign to post in my kitchen will remind me not to forget them.  Here are my favorites:
  • Grapes with String Cheese
  • Ants on a Log (Celery Sticks with (Peanut or Almond Butter) & Raisins.)
  • Pretzels with Hummus
  • Trail Mix with Fruit of Your Choice
  • Yogurt
  • Boiled Egg
  • Nut Mix
So now that you have some ideas to start with, make a list for the week and make one big trip to the grocery store.  If I don't take care of everything in one trip, I'll end up making lots of trips...which means I'll probably make impulse buys each time.  Impulse buys = BAD!  :)

What are your favorite meals to cook at home? 

1 comment:

  1. I love this, I have this very same problem! I often get stuck in ruts and don't want to cook at home (I love to cook, really, I do!) but sometimes I just don't want to be bothered.

    Your go to dinners are just about exactly what mine are ;) I love to hear other people's go to meals though, it helps to be able to add more to my list. Maybe I need to make an ACTUAL list somewhere to look at when I feel stumped...hmmm...

    Something that helps us a lot now that the weather is warming up is that we have a great patio and a grill. When the sun is shining, there is something really nice and special about being able to grill outside and it so easy, so it kind of keeps us motivated to be adventurous and try new veggies, meats, and sauces on the grill.