Saturday, March 25, 2017

Another refill

arrived in today's mail:

Psoriasis cream at the generic price of $439.91. No deductible left, so this is a freebie. I continue to be proactive in filling our maintenance RX ahead of the looming end of our current insurance coverage. The possibilities frighten me, should I not have a secured a position with benefits.

What's for dinner: trying something new, in the pantry challenge

 Dinner prep started early today, in order to allow the flavors to marinate in a batch of homemade cole slaw. I used my last "old" carrot (anticipated the need, and bought 2 more lbs the other day) and used one of my loss leader, St Pat's cabbages.

 Dollar Tree, large can of Hanover baked beans out of the kitchen pantry cupboard. The last pkg of beef franks are defrosted in the fridge, and will be pan fried in reserved bacon fat. I didn't want to buy hot dog buns, so using the recently discovered, soft hamburger bun recipe, I had my first ever attempt at making my own hot dog buns.
Noted that I have about 2 lbs left of AP flour, so plan on buying a 5 lb bag soon. Meanwhile, I baked off my more rustic, and larger than I thought they'd be, hot dog buns. They taste good (sampled a side bit) but made a not to make 10 not 8 next time. No trips to the store, used ingredients on hand, so this worked for me.

Friday, March 24, 2017

What's for dinner? Baked macaroni and cheese

As is my new normal, I have 2 versions of my traditional mac and cheese, now baking off in the mini convection oven. I intentionally cooked extra GF and regular pasta earlier this week, so as to be able to assemble this even quicker, saving energy in the process. I used up a small baggie with home grated and later fzn, Swiss cheese deli ends (still plenty more in additional bags) and the rest of an open block of NY Cheddar. To the left is DD's pasta, to the right, the dish for me and DS #2. Only other modification was to substitute lactaid milk for the white sauce and to use a tad more than would be required of the finished cheese sauce in DD's version as rice pasta really soaks up sauce. Her's is also topped with homemade GF bread crumbs, ours has regular Panko.

Sides are:
 individual tossed salads of organic baby salad greens, tomato, black olives (served with choice of dressing).
-fzn broccoli for 2 of us, as DD can't tolerate it.

Property survey and finances


I am seriously considering getting the property of the home I'm buying, once bought, surveyed and staked, so that I know definitively, where the property lines are on the sides and rear of the property.

Anyone ever have this done? cost projection?

I have a call in to a local surveyor (literally lives on the next street over from prospective home), who was recommeded by my real estate attorney. He will get back to me this afternoon; I assume that he is on a job at the moment.

Hate adding extra costs at this point, but my end goal is to do what is necessary NOW, while I have added income, as this may not always be the case. Electrical, plumbing, appliance upgrades and bringing shoddy work into permitted, up to code work, will be done. Cosmetics can wait a bit, as well as luxuries like a gas fireplace conversion, a remodeled kitchen. As quotes are coming in, I can pay cash for 1/2 of it, depeating my 6 month income reserve. I have my retirement income starting the 31st, guaranteed for life, so I won't "need" the 6 month cushion. My retirement take home will fully cover my projected living expenses, all inclusive, and leave a few hunded to spare. My second income stream continues, which translates into complete savings. I still plan on getting employment with benefits by the end of Summer, as my ins ends at that time.

For the other 1/2 of the remodeling/upgrade costs, I will most likely get a home owner's line of credit, but I could* put it on my CC (9 % interest rate)and pay it off well under a year, faster once I add another job's salary to the mix. I continue to crunch the numbers in my anticipated, new budget and it looks very feasible. Better to pay interest to a bank, however, and deduct that interest. I've already reached out to my mortgage officer, and we agree that this would be done after the home sale closing, as I don't wish to add additional debt to a 30 year mortgage.


Dinner for one

Thursday night is YOYO night, and in yesterday's case, dinner for one as DD was working late. I prepared a chef's salad as best I could:

-the rest of a head of Romaine
-some organic, baby salad greens
-the rest of an open tomato
-some Spanish green olives
-a dill pickle spear that I sliced up
-some Cheddar off of an open block, that I cubed
-the rest of a carrot, that I then grated
-the rest of the marinated, baked BSCB that I have been serving DS all week as a sandwich filling. Just the thinner pieces that are hard to cut from were left. With the next day being a Lenten Friday, I wanted to yse this up

I topped it with some bottled Honey mustard dressing. It hit the spot, certainly far too much salt (Shh! don't tell my MD) but I had 24 oz of water with my supper.

Lunches at home

 Leftovers for lunch Monday: lazy golumbki casserole
 Tues: homemade beef-vegetable-noodle soup
 Wed: more soup, this time with some Saltines
Thurs: a weird lunch: I killed some leftover, pork beans. It worked. I really didn't care.

Cheap snacks

 I chanced upon several marked downs at Aldi's yesterday, including the last container they had of Nacho Cheddar cheese sprinkle for popcorn. We like the white Cheddar version, it doesn't contain questionable ingredients so, at 69 cents, it was worth a try.

I also happened to find popcorn kernals at Dollar Tree.
I made a double batch of Nacho cheese seasoned, popcorn for a snack. We really liked it! With grocery spending strictly limited, being able to add an inexpensive treat is welcomed.