<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Layout:
Home > Category: cooking
 

Viewing the 'cooking' Category

AUGUST 2019

September 10th, 2019 at 04:41 pm


Total = $2,382.27

This is really late because I hurt my arm and I’m trying to rest it. I initially hurt it almost a month ago now, it was just a little sore but I kept doing gardening and other stuff that it just kept getting sore again. And then last week when I was working out I think I really made it worst. I didn’t feel it though until that night when I was trying to sleep and it was really throbbing.

Grocery = $343.62 – It seems a lot harder for us these days to stay under $300 per month. I think the main reasons are:
1. Prices have gone up especially with the staple items.
2. We are eating a lot less these days and cooking a lot more at home.
3. We have been trying out few new recipes lately and some require ingredients that we don’t normally buy.
4. We have also been introducing more variety into our diet. I’ve been trying to eat at least 5 cups of vegetables a day. At least the garden is starting to help reduce in this category.
I’m okay with these but at the same time I’ve started to really look at ways to cut costs. On the weekend I found milk that was 60% off because it was due in 2 days’ time, instead of $3 for the 1.5 litre milk it was only $1.20. This milk was with extra cream so I bought 2 bottles and made yogurt (500g) and cheese (about 300g) and the rest DH made kefir for our breakfast for half a week’s worth. Just for the yogurt and cheese it would have cost $10 or so and I only spent not even half an hour making both of them the rest of the time was just leaving it do its thing. And then last night I made fresh tortellini with some of the cheese, with just butter and sage from the garden as sauce. Few months ago we went and got some Chinese dumplings the price has gone up from $10 for 10 to $13, so last month when I got the craving for some dumplings I decided to buy the ingredients, I think it cost me around $8, including making the chilli oil and made 3 dozens of it. So, I got to freeze some of them. Right now I have been enjoying making stuff so I will continue until I get sick of it.

Financials-

*Put as much money we possibly can into Investments (at least $40K).
I’m hoping this will be done in 2 months’ time.

*Save $3K for Holiday money.
N/A

*Save $5K for "The Challenge"
Had 11 NSD so $33
DH made some money trading but I haven’t asked him if it was enough to put some money into this, I don’t think he really calculated how much he made. Maybe I’ll add it next month.

Other –

*Read 200 books.
98 An Imaginary Life - David Malouf (8 Aug)
99 The Girl on the Page - John Purcell (10 Aug) - Audio
100 The Miniaturist - Jessie Burton (13 Aug)
101 The Informant - Susan Wilkins (17 Aug) - Audio
102 The Mourner - Susan Wilkins (20 Aug) - Audio
103 Steppenwolf - Hermann Hesse (21 Aug)
104 The Killer - Susan Wilkins (23 Aug) - Audio
105 Don't Let her Go - Harlan Coben (25 Aug) - Audio
106 Home - Harlan Coben (27 Aug) - Audio
107 Fool me Once - Harlan Coben (28 Aug) - Audio
108 Hunting Shadows - Sheila Bugler (31 Aug) - Audio

*Continue Learning Spanish.
Doing a little bit, losing my groove.

* Wake-up early workout and or meditate 5 times a week.
I was doing good and then I hurt my arm.

*Blogging once per week.
Trying.

*Continue Garden/Landscaping.
I actually did a bit at the front yard but now I really need to rest my arm for a while

*Continue Decluttering.
I’m looking forward to doing some spring cleaning later this month

*Learn to Draw
This has been forgotten.

Week 32

August 14th, 2019 at 08:55 pm



Grocery = $81.84, a bit over than what I wanted it to be. Everything is going up in prices.

Birthday Present = I finally bought myself a birthday gift – 4 months later ($145).

Shopping = ($111.00) I had to throw away my old stock pot and had been looking to get a small frying pan. I also had to get rid of my old pasta marker, it broke late last year.

Gardening and Cooking = I did a little bit of gardening but the weather has been not that great but I’ve been doing a little bit every day. We made a big batch of dumplings (almost 100).

Til debt do us part = I been watching this old Canadian show online. It's amazing how people end up in debt. Interestingly it seems that majority of the people that participated in that show are mainly middle class. Most of them have a very decent income, which made it easier for them to get loans and credit cards and ultimately into consumer debts.

Last night’s dinner

July 18th, 2019 at 05:30 pm



Last night I made pork chops, fried rice with lots of vegies (couple of cups), also made roasted sweet potatoes, potatoes and onions (3 cups), and 2 cups of greens salad all from the garden.

I got more greens leaves (kale, spinach, swede chards, land crest, parsley and beet leaves) and made a simple salad of olive oil, red wine vinegar and lemon juice. We got a lot of lemons from our tree at the moment.

My breakfast was leftover pumpkin pancakes with maple syrup and sliced bananas. DH is doing fasting today.

Dinner and Breakfast

July 17th, 2019 at 04:57 pm


Last night we made salmon with sweet potato and pumpkin fries (about a cup) and we also steamed some vegetables- a cup of pumpkin, a cup of carrots, a cup of peas, a cup of broccoli and a handful of greens from the garden. Also we had a small salad of mainly lettuce because it needed to be eaten. Also had about half a cup of steamed rice each.

For breakfast DH made pumpkin pancakes using the buttermilk from yesterday. I steamed the leftover pumpkin last night. There wasn’t much left and since the streamer was already it was just convenient.

The weather is warmer today, great for my plants.

DECEMBER 2018

January 7th, 2019 at 06:12 pm



Happy New Year everyone!

This is very late because we had guests for almost 2 weeks and it has taken me a while to get back on my routine.

Total for Dec was $4,394.98

Grocery - it was by a lot, $448.14, extra 3 adults and a toddler can cost a bit.

Household goods – we bought a portable air conditioner, bed and bed frame for a total of $1,243.97.

Christmas Expense for December - $524.84

Car Registration – We renewed our annual car registration for $816.50. We looked at paying it quarterly but it would actually cost more.

Entertainment – We went out with our guest a few times, $268.59.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~000~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

------------2018 Goals---------

Financials-

*Put as much money we possibly can into Investments (at least $45K). -DONE

*Save $4K for Holiday money. – Didn’t spend any this month

*Save $5K for future House Repairs/Future Remodel. – Spent $188.50, mainly fixing the main bathroom for our guest.


Other –

*Read 70 books. – didn’t have time to really read.
176 Breakfast with Einstein - Chad Orzel (2 Dec) - Audio
177 Saga Land - Karl Gislason & Richard Fidler (11 Dec) - Audio
178 The Spider and the Fly - Claudia Rowe (18 Dec) - Audio
179 The One Who Got Away - Caroline Overington (19 Dec) - Audio
180 The Fox - Frederick Forsyth (20 Dec) - Audio

*Learn Spanish. – still at it everyday
*Workout 3/4 times a week. – what is workout? Lol. Massive fail!!!

*Try new recipes every other week. - I’ve tried a bit of fermentation and I think a new recipe in the bbq.

*Blogging once per week. - failed

*Continue Garden/Landscaping. – yes still tiring out the front lawn, almost done. The back garden has been neglected and is not cover with pumpkin so we will have to wait until they are gone before we can finish the concreting bit.

*Wake-up early (before 7am) – yes but I finding myself slipping a bit. At one stage I was waking up around 6 am or just before but lately I’ve been getting up at 6:40am

*Continue Decluttering. – did it with the Christmas items.

NOVEMBER 2018

December 3rd, 2018 at 04:06 pm

Total for the month of November is $2,490.82.

We mainly spent it on:

Grocery = we were under budget, spent $236.29. I’ve decided to put $20 in the challenge because we are under this month.

Household Expenses = $500.87, it was mainly for the Skip Hire.

Transport Related = $290.96, DH hasn't been taking the early train and this also includes fuel and the registration for the camper trailer.

Entertainment total = $184.93

Gifts = was high this month because of my cousin’s wedding, that was $300 for the month.

Holiday (November portion) = $269.49

Christmas = $253.51, started getting stuff for Christmas. This year and for the past few years I budgeted $1,200 for our birthdays, anniversary and Christmas, we didn’t spend much for our birthdays and anniversary this year so we got a bit of money still in this category. We still got over $800 in it available for the rest of the year. I don’t intent to spend this much for Christmas though, hoping to only spend half.

**CHALLENGE** we had 10 NSDs in November so $30 to the Challenge Fund plus the $20 from the being under in grocery, so $50 for the month. I still need to set up an actual bank account for this. For now it is just written down in my spreadsheet.



Financials-

*Put as much money we possibly can into Investments (at least $45K). === DONE!!!===

*Save $4K for Holiday money. = We have now spent $4,754.63 under this category because of the camper trailer.

*Save $5K for future House Repairs/Future Remodel. = We will most likely end up spending around $1K under this category this year, not too bad.


Other –

*Read 70 books.
160. The Scandal - Fredrik Backman (3 Nov)
161. The Travelling Cat Chronicles - Hiro Arikawa (9 Nov)
162. Big Little Lies - Liane Moriarty (10 Nov) - Audio
163. Zealot - Reza Aslan (13 Nov)
164. Started Early, Took my Dog - Kate Atkinson (14 Nov) - Audio
165. Smiling Mind - James Tutton & Jane Martino (15 Nov) - Audio
166. The Rosie Project - Graeme Simsion (17Nov) - Audio
167. #NOW: The Suprising Truth About the Power of Now - Dr. Max McKeown (17 Nov) - Audio
168. The Brain that Changes Itself - Norman Doidge, MD (18 Nov) - Audio
169. The Hidden Life of Trees - Peter Wohlleben (20 Nov) - Audio
170. Aristotle's Way - Edith Hall (21 Nov)
171. Revenge - Andrew Holmes & James Patterson (22 Nov) - Audio
172. The Lion Tamer who Lost - Louise Beech (25 Nov)
173. The Brain's Way of Healing - Norman Doidge (27 Nov) - Audio
174. The Science of Getting Rich - Wallace D. Wattles (28 Nov) - Audio
175. Dark Emu - Bruce Pascoe (30 Nov) - Audio

In the last couple of weeks I’ve spent a lot of time in the garden, didn’t have as much time actually reading but I been loving listening to audiobooks while gardening.



*Learn Spanish. = Still going everyday

*Workout 3/4 times a week. = failed but I been doing so much physical work in the garden that I been going to bed dog tired.

*Try new recipes every other week.
Made lemon tart and tomato chutney for the first time.

*Blogging once per week. = I missed one when we were away

*Continue Garden/Landscaping. = We did a lot and still going.

*Wake-up early (before 7am) = yes

*Continue Decluttering. = YES!

WEEK 47

November 27th, 2018 at 09:35 pm


Grocery = $91.25, bought a bit of fish for the freezer, $23 worth. Also we went to some sort of a market on Sunday, it was supposed to be a farmer’s market but there weren’t many farmer’s there at all.
Wedding = Last week a relative of mine got married we gave a $200 cash gift.

Garage sales = high chair for $1, this will be for my little niece when they comes for Christmas. It is still very good the guy just wants to get rid of it because they are selling up. There was also another garage sale on the same street and I got a set of lamps for $15. I want to build a headboard and I think I can used these lamps for it.

Garden = On the way home from the market we saw a sign for horse poo for sale, we end up getting a $7.50 worth. It better value than getting from the store. The best thing I got from the market were seedlings, they were only $1 each. I end up spending $12.

Christmas stuff = Got some more random stuff for Christmas to put under the tree (that’s if we are getting a tree this year???)

Making Sauerkraut = I made sauerkraut, for the first time ever.

Lunch out with friend and her family = On Saturday DH and I had lunch with a friend and her family. For some reason they end up paying for lunch so we picked up the bill for coffees and cakes afterwards, $18.50.

Change Registration Plate for Camper Trailer = DH had to get the registration for the camper trailer transferred to our state. He ended up spending $96. This included some once off fee, it will eventually be $59 per year.

WEEK 45

November 13th, 2018 at 03:18 pm

Grocery = $89.13 did a bit of shopping when we got home and then we did a big shop on the weekend. We got a little bit more stuff than usual since our fridge was really empty. I’m happy that vegetables are cheaper now that the weather is warming up. I particularly got a good deal on tomatoes; it was over a kilo for only $2. I know we can’t finish it all before it goes off so yesterday I made tomato chutney (for the first time), used up about half of the tomatoes.

Christmas Shopping = Started getting some stuff for Christmas, $206.56 worth. Couple of weeks ago my brother called me to asked if they could come at our place for Christmas, before that I was thinking of not really doing much for Christmas but now we got guest so I will have to do more shopping. I don’t mind I get to see my little niece again. Apparently she is running now.

Some people requested photos of our new (to us) camper trailer. Hope this works. I haven’t posted a photo here for years.


This camp site has great view of the lake and the sunset


There's so much room in this tent.

I don't have any photo of the little kitchen next time we go camping I'll make sure to get one and post it.

EDIT: DH actually had a photo of the kitchen.



OCTOBER 2018

November 8th, 2018 at 10:43 pm



This is very late but I’ve been away and got sick since the last day of our holiday. We got back Tuesday afternoon and I have just been trying to recover from it.

So Week 43 and 44 was spent away on our holiday, we went and visited relatives interstate. And then somehow end up getting a camper trailer – that was not planned at all. I will do a separate blog about this purchase and about our holiday later.

October Total = $4,706.26

CAMPER TRAILER = this includes the cost of camper trailer for $2,300.

GROCERY = $188.19

UTILITIES = only for electricity bill this month, $126.93. This was our first payable bill for the year.

PROPERTY RATES = $202.90 – for some reason they are now taking the money out of our account on the first of the month instead to the end of the month, so in September we actually didn’t had to pay this.

Household and Garden Items = $177.91

DH Birthday and Anniversary = 311.92

~~~~~~~~ 2018 GOALS~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Financials-

*Put as much money we possibly can into Investments (at least $45K). Buying the camper trailer made us missed out on achieving this goal in October but it should really happen in November.

*Save $4K for Holiday money. In the month of October we spent $439.14.

*Save $5K for future House Repairs/Future Remodel.


Other –

*Read 70 books. I didn’t get to do as much reading while on holiday.

148. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley (2 Oct)
149. Unforgivable - Mike Thomas (4 Oct) - Audio
150. The Examined Life - Stephen Grosz (8 Oct)
151. The Other Half of Happiness - Ayisha Malik (9 Oct) - Audio
152. The Couple Next Door - Shari Lapena (11 Oct)
153. Unwritten - Jack Delosa (12 Oct) - Audio
154. The $1000 Project - Canna Campbell (15 Oct)
155. The Love that I Have - James Maloney (16 Oct) - Audio
156. 10% Happier - Dan Harris (17 Oct)
157. Anthem - Ayn Rand (18 Oct)
158. The Unquiet Dead - Ausma Zehanat Khan (25 Oct) – Audio
159. The Power of Now - Eckhart Tolle (30 Oct)

*Learn Spanish. – yes, daily.

*Workout 3/4 times a week. – did really good before going away but we only did walking the dog while on holiday

*Try new recipes every other week. – Yes, I tried cooking beef brisket for the first time and I fermented some swiss chard before we left. The fermentation turned out well and we been having some for the last few days. I also tried baking bread in the bbq.

*Blogging once per week. - Failed

*Continue Garden/Landscaping. - Yes

*Wake-up early (before 7am) - Yes

*Continue Decluttering. - Yes

APRIL 2018 (WEEK 17)

May 2nd, 2018 at 05:15 am

This would have been a low spend month but because we pre-paid internet for a year it total to $2,568.13. Half of this was because of the internet, holiday expenses and my birthday celebration.

Internet – was big total for the month was $845.

Holiday – ended at $285.20. Some of this included money we spent on our Easter Holiday and some for another holiday we are going very soon.

Groceries – We only got few things this weekend because we didn’t need much and it only cost us $9.95. The total for the month was $296.20

Birthday Celebration – I had another birthday get together, with friends this time. We had lunch and then we went to an Escape Room and then had coffee afterwards. It was fun and it cost us $127.00. Overall, my birthday cost me $242.50, this includes that dinner I went with DH.

Eating Out – We did not cook at all the whole weekend. We went a bit crazy. On top of the lunch above we went out to another restaurant for Sunday lunch as well and we got takeaway food Saturday night, thankfully we had leftover and we ate that Sunday night. All the eating out, not including above amount was $61.90.

Fuel – got some $37.20


Financials-

*Put as much money we possibly can into Investments (at least $45K).
More savings in April than in March - *happy dance*

*Save $4K for Holiday money.
Have spent some of this money at the start of the month and will continues to spend more money in May for our next holiday.

*Save $5K for future House Repairs/Future Remodel.
We should be able to start saving more for this in the second half of the year.


Other –

*Read 70 books.
28. Beyond Good and Evil - Frederick Nietzsche (3 Apr) - Read w/ Audio**
29. Money to Burn - James Grippando (5 Apr) - Audio
30. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad (7 Apr)
31. On the Shortness of Life - Seneca (8 Apr)
32. Ready Player One - Ernest Cline (10 Apr)
34. A is for Alibi - Sue Grafton (11 Apr) - Audio
35. Freakonomics - Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner (12 Apr)
36. The Checklist Manifesto: How to get things right - Atul Gawande (13 Apr)
37. Siddhartha -Hermann Hesse (15 Apr)
38. Crazy Rich Asians - Kevin Kwan (17 Apr)
39. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood (18 Apr) - Audio
40. You Need a Budget - Jesse Mecham (19 Apr)
41. Philosophy for Beginners - Max Charlesworth (20 Apr)
42. B is for Burglar - Sue Grafton (22 Apr) - Audio
43. The Pardon - James Grippando (23 Apr) - Audio
44. War and Gold - Kwasi Kwarteng (24 Apr)
45. The Poisonwood Bible - Barbara Kingsolver (26 Apr)
46. The Teeth of the Tiger - Tom Clancy (27 Apr) – Audio
47. C is for Corpse - Sue Grafton (30 Apr) – Audio

I’m more than half way to my goal! It’s amazing how cutting about 4 hours of television a day adds up. These days there’s not much worth watching unless you are into reality shows. I used to watch those cooking and renovation contest but they are not about cooking or renovations anymore, it’s always just about people fighting which I’m so over it.

As you can see I listened to a bit of audiobooks this month, they are all crime and mystery books except for the first one which I read along while listening to the audio. I already got a copy of ‘Beyond Good and Evil’ in my kindle and I borrowed the audio version from the library online. I do a lot of my listening to the audiobooks while I'm walking the dog, while cleaning and in the last several days while I was doing some painting.

Since I’m more than halfway to my goal already and I’ve increased my reading time while not really reading because of audiobooks I decided to increase the amounts of books I aim to read to 100 books this year.


*Learn Spanish.
Still going and I’m at 104 days streak at the moment.

*Workout 3/4 times a week.
Doing very poorly here, I’m still doing some but mainly just stretching and walking the dog, I need to do harder exercises when we get back from our holiday. This is becoming a bad pattern, me constantly waiting for something to happen before I get my act together. I need to break it.

*Try new recipes every other week.
I tried few and one of them was the Aloo Gobi that I got inspired by toilet-paper-tracker.

*Blogging once per week.
Check

*Continue Garden/Landscaping.
As I mentioned in my previous blog entry DH built a screen wall outside to screen off the clothes line and I painted it.

*Wake-up early (before 7am)
Check

*Continue Decluttering.
DH has been putting our music from CDs to digital so we can listen to them whenever and wherever on our phones and the CDs themselves have been stored away into a plastic tub in the garage. It took him over a month copying them.