Monday, May 22, 2017

This Week on the Dining Table

The  "Eating Whatever" Edition--

My meals down in VA have been somewhat haphazard and slapped together.  The point is I have NOT been cooking other than reheating or heating in the microwave.  On Friday I cooked bacon in the microwave and made me and the mother in-law BLT sammies.  I also had a Stauffer's spinach souffle one night for myself for dinner.  I went out to Captain D's and got us a fish dinner for lunch one day but mostly I haven't been getting any take-out/eating out here.  I bought snacking foods(pimento cheese, hummus, cheddar, crackers, pita chips,celery)and have been having that for meals with fruit, or a can of soup or beefaroni.  Plus the mother in-law has been eating on the Mother's Day ham dinner sis in-law made.  I had to put those leftovers in the freezer finally but she'd got a stack of TV Dinners her daughter bought her.

Moving On....

Onward to the meal planning!

Here's what was planned last week--

1. Sunday--Fend for Yourself
2. Monday--Ravioli and Sauce, Salad, Garlic Bread
3. Tuesday--Roast Chicken and Veggies
4. Wednesday--Leftover Chicken in Gnocchi Soup
5. Thursday--Leftovers or Fend for Yourself
6. Friday--Biscuits and Gravy(BFD)
7. Saturday--? or Leftovers

And this is what actually happened--

1. Sunday--Fend for Yourself
2. Monday--Ravioli and Sauce, Salad, Garlic Bread
3. Tuesday--Roast Chicken and Veggies
4. Wednesday--Leftover Chicken in Gnocchi Soup
5. Thursday--Leftovers or Fend for Yourself
6. Friday--Biscuits and Gravy(BFD)
7. Saturday--Leftovers

Last week saw 7 nights of dinners....0 night of take-out, 4 nights of Leftovers and 4 nights of cooking new meals.  Daughter stuck to her meal plan, go team!

One trip to Weis put a dent in the food budget of $15.   This brought my May food spending total to $94.93.  There are 9 days left in the month and we are still under $100 spent on food this month.  Daughter has been emptying the freezer in my absence since she HATES food shopping!  Works for me. lolz

My savings percentages last week was ?% which brings the month's percentage to ?%. 
I don't have the receipt from Daughter's grocery shopping so I don't have the accurate amount she spent(other than telling me "around $15")and I don't know what she bought.  I'll get the details when I get home.

Leftovers going into this week.......haven't a clue what they have left.

Here is this week's "food plan"....
* Denotes "complicated" meals

1. Sunday--Fend for Yourself
2. Monday--Baked Ham, Corn Casserole, Asparagus
3. Tuesday--?
4. Wednesday--?
5. Thursday--?
6. Friday--?
7. Saturday--?

This week will see ? new meals cooked, ? night of Take-Out/Eating-Out and ? nights of Leftovers.

Daughter is baking a ham and they'll be eating off leftover ham this week.  She also plans to make Beef Stroganoff and a Veggie, a Chicken dish(Marsala or ?)and maybe Shrimp Scampi w/Liguine(which was my suggestion).

What I need to buy for this menu?  Well I'm not there so I am not buying anything. lol
She says she needs to by fresh produce(corn, asparagus, mushrooms)and will pick up some frozen veg too.  And cheese.

What is getting fixed and served at your house this week?

Was last week's plan successful, did you go off plan or did you not even plan what was going to be eaten last week?

Any great deals on food at your stores this week?


Saturday, May 20, 2017

Cindi is Back

Just a short post to let everyone know that Cindi, from All Doors Considered, Thrifty at Sixty and The Thrifty Millionaire(among others)is back with a new blog.

Retired and Thrifty

Go over and give her some new blog love, ok?


Thursday, May 18, 2017

2016 Road Trip.....May 15th LA to TX & Back-Part 1

On Sunday, May 15th, Daughter had off from work so we took a little road trip.
Want to guess where we went?

We visited an animal park in Bayou Pierre called the Natchitoches Alligator Park.

So here is the sign after you enter the enclosed park.  Beware the gators!


And look at this first vicious critter we encountered.  And he wasn't even behind a barrier for our safety!!!

We went up a walkway to a natural bayou area where the gators were just being gators in their natural environment and us humans were behind fencing.......

A sleepy alligator.
You can't hardly see this gator for the weeds.

A big old gator shot from between the bars and trees.  Yikes!

Then it was over to the area with the baby alligators in the baby pool.
For an additional price they'd come over and let you hold one of the babies and have your picture took.
Um, I passed on that one.

So we took goofy photos instead for free.......

They had an inside exhibit alligators that they couldn't put out in the general population.  They all had something about them that wouldn't let them "fend" for themselves with the others.  I guess you'd call them "special needs" gators.

This guy had a deformed snout and crooked teeth..

They had some inside exhibits of  snakes and another exhibit of racooms behind very dirty filthy plexi-glass.

Evidently they use to have a rare albino alligator at this gator park, Edgar the Albino Alligator.
Unfortunately Edgar passed away a few years back and they have had him stuffed and preserved so he is now an "ex-gator".
This is the best shot I could take of him through the nasty plexi-glass......

Then it was back outside to feed the emus...

A short video of us feeding one of the emus.....

Then of course we had to feed the ponies.......

But the pygmy goats were one of Daughter's favorites.

She wanted to take one home that took a special shine to her.

This one fella got quite up close and personal and nibbled on her ear..........

Then it was back to all things gator.

The announcement that the Alligator Feeding Show was about to begin sent us off to that area.

"Please Be Safe.  Do not stand, sit, climb or lean over fences!  If you fall, the alligators will eat you and that might make them sick!  Thank You."

Goodness knows I don't want to be responsible for making gators sick........

Here are some little gators swarming along the shore line before the feeding frenzy started.

They had a boat of sorts on a pulley and the guy in it pulls the boat out into position in the bayou.
Wearing gloves and hooking a whole chicken onto a wire, he then dangles it over the side of the boat and the gators jump to get it.

Gators waiting for lunch.....

A big gator getting antsy and started jumping even before the chicken gets dangled.......

I caught the moment this gator took the "lunch" clear off the wire.

Then amidst the feeding frenzy this HUGE gator sleeping on the opposite shore must have smelled lunch and threw himself into the water with a loud WHACK! and everybody in the bleachers turned to look.

More shots of gators jockeying for lunch......

You can see the wooden sheathing on that "boat" has also been eaten away from many gator feeding sessions.

Here's a short video I got all the feeding frenzy too........

This was a different algae filled pool with some small gators, also algae covered.

A random peacock we encountered.  He knows to steer clear of the water.....

I wanted to have some one take my picture with this fake gator bursting through the underpinnings of the deck to the entrance/exit but Hubs and Daughter were already inside the snack bar looking for food.

A gratuitous shot of deep fried cookies sign for McVal......

Me about to have my first Boudin Ball....and I am not sure if I want to do this because I know this stuff is spicy.......

The prices were ridiculously high so we shared 3 things and 2 drinks.  It wasn't lunch time yet but we needed something to stave off hunger.

This was my piece of a fried gator bite, a piece of a Natchitoches meat pie and a few fries.
Being in Natchitoches of course we had to try a Natichitoche meat pie.  The town is pronounced nah-coh-doches. 
Not to be confused with Nacogdoches(Nah-coh-Do-ches), which is in East Texas about 2 hours away from Natchitoches LA.

I let Hubs/Daughter have m Boudin Ball after one bite.

They had photos of CeeLo Green in the snack bar.  I guess he shot a music video here or something...

Then it was off to the gift shop(which you have to go through to enter or exit the park)....


I saw this book for sale in the gift shop and had to laugh......." Dead Is No Excuse-The Official Southern Ladies Guide to Hosting the Perfect Funeral".

Then amidst all the gator themed novelties I spied this Steam Punk Lamp for sale.  Since Lorraine's Hubs makes stuff like this and sells it at "Cons" I sent her a photo of it. lolz

A huge taxidermy gator in the gift shop(he wasn't for sale)next to plastic gator squirt guns. lolz

I did bring home a small souvenir from our time with the 'gators.........

What says Christmas better than gators on a Xmas tree ball? lolz
And with that we bid Natchitoches Louisiana adieu.

This has gotten long so I'll talk about the rest of the days adventures next time.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

2 Million Readers Can't Be Wrong

Looking over my blog stats on Monday, May 16st, I noticed that my page views hit 2 million sometime over the course of April.

Current Pageviews all time history      2,055,680

Now ain't that something?!?!

This here little blog began on the day before my birthday back in 2009 so that's 2 million+ views in 7 years + almost 4 months time.
Not bad for this miniscule piece of the internet I inhabit.
Who'd a thunk it?  ;-)

So a big THANK YOU! to everyone out there who comes here to cheer or jeer at me and my little life.  If I can't be an inspiration to you at least let me be a warning.  *snort*

I think Norma Desmond said it best............