Menu Plan: 02/06 – 02/12 (Pantry Menu)


Last week ended up being busy enough that I never did get around to making out a menu and, believe me, my week showed it.  We still managed to eat at home but every day I heard the dreaded question – “What’s for dinner?”.  This week, I’m determined that I will get a menu plan made for the week.  Nothing really special planned for this week so I’ll probably keep it simple, using items that I already have on hand.



  • Leftovers
  • Sandwiches
  • Soup
  • Ravioli


  • Sun:  Planned dinner out for Michael’s birthday on the 4th
  • Mon: Crock Pot Taco Soup
  • Tues: Pulled Pork Sandwiches with homemade buns, baked beans, & oven baked fries
  • Wed: Leftovers
  • Thurs:  Crock Pot Ham & Bean Soup
  • Fri: Creamy Tortellini with homemade garlic bread, Ceasar salad
  • Sat: Dinner out with friends (also preplanned)

For more great menu plans this week, don’t forgot to check out Organizing Junkie!

Have a great week, everyone, and may God bless you!

Make Your Own: Instant Oatmeal Packets




These are so simple & quick to make & they can save you quite a bit of money, depending on what all you add to them.  If you’re like my family, we like all kinds of varieties.  These can be customized to your family’s tastes and preferences, AND you won’t have all of the additives and preservatives in yours that you find in the ones that you would buy prepackaged in the stores. 

My 8-year-old (very soon to be 9) son loves oatmeal but has trouble remembering what all the measurements are, so these are easy for him to grab and fix himself with a little supervision with the hot liquid (usually milk).

The ones that I mixed up today are just brown sugar and cinnamon because that I what I have on hand right now.  But you could add chopped dried fruit, or even fresh fruit after it’s been mixed up, plus any other spices or flavors that you love. 

I got the original recipe from Frugal Families, but I almost always customize it to our tastes & what I have on hand at the time.

Instant Oatmeal Packets


  • 1/4 cup quick cooking oats
  • 2 Tbs ground oatmeal
  • pinch of salt

For the ground oatmeal, I place 2 heaping tablespoons of oats in my mini food chopper and process:


Mix all ingredients together and store in an air tight container, label, & store until ready to use.


A few variations:

Dried fruit & cream:  1 Tbs. dry milk or nondairy creamer & 2 Tbs. chopped fruit of choice.

Raisins/Craisins & Brown Sugar:  1tsp. packed brown sugar & 1 Tbs. raisins/craisins. 

Spiced Oatmeal:  1 Tbs. Sugar, 1/4 tsp. cinnamon, and scant 1/8 tsp nutmeg

Brown Sugar & Cinnamon:  1 Tbs. packed brown sugar and 1/4 tsp. cinnamon

Possible Additional Toppings: Fresh fruits, peanut butter, maple syrup, butter, jam/jelly, apple butter, etc.   The possibilities are endless! 

The cost?  Well, I’m glad you asked.  For me, the cost is  about $0.09/packet vs. $0.18-$0.20/store bought packets.   Again, with dried fruits and other toppings, the price could increase to about $0.12/packet, but it’s still cheaper than buying store bought & adding additional toppings to that, which we usually ended up doing.   This time, I mixed up 26 packets (ran out of baggies) in about 10 minutes time.  It really takes very little time to do this. 

I hope this inspires you to MYO oatmeal packets.  I don’t think you’ll be disappointed if you do. 


This post is linked to:


Pantry/Laundry Remodel – Phase 1

Well, it has finally begun.  I’ve been reorganizing my pantry off and on for a while, but now we’re into the remodeling phase.  My dryer has been out in the storage building since we moved here.  There was no place for it in the house.  That’s the way my in-law’s had it and never got around to changing it.  Well, when  my dryer died a little over 3 months ago, we decided we’d get ready to start the remodel so that when we purchased a new one, it would not have to go out in the building since we’re still having some issues with mice out there. 

So, with the money that we received off of the sale of the timber, we have purchased a new hot water heater and a new dryer.  The hot water heater is another desperate need of ours.  The one we have right now is not working very well.  Some days we have just enough hot water to do what we need and other days there’s barely enough.  Even my father-in-law is unsure of the age of this thing, but he knows that he purchased it USED back when they moved in here which was in 1978!  So, needless to say, it’s served its purpose well and it’s time for a new one. 

Several months ago, we ran new gas lines under the house, and we purposely ran one for a new hot water heater, which will be here next week!  So, more on that then.  Back to the pantry/laundry room remodel and my new dryer.

In case you haven’t seen my post The Blessings Of A Well-Stocked Pantry, here are the pics of what my pantry looked liked.

pantry pic 4 pantry pic 8pantry pic 5pantry pic 6

If you notice, the flooring is not done, and it’s still kind of a mess.  Well, the “mess” portion is now all over the rest of my house at the moment until we get done.  But, the shelving is back in place and reorganized, the drawers and microwave are still in there, and the brown cabinet is still in the corner, but it will be coming out as soon as we get the hot water heater in because then the washer will join the dryer in what will be my new laundry area! 

Brian built a small wall to go in front of the shelving so that I can add some curtains in front of them, but the wall is not done yet.  Also, the new doorway is framed up but he’s not done there either.   But, we did get the flooring down and the new dryer installed.   So, without further ado, here’s what phase 1 looks like!

The widened and newly reframed doorway:IMG_0008  The small wall that will be in front of my shelving:IMG_0010 The flooring which is the same throughout the rest of the house:.  Plus, I left you a peek at what was there:IMG_0012 IMG_0013

Shelving back in place and mostly reorganized: IMG_0015

Last, but certainly not least, my new dryer in its new home! IMG_0017 IMG_0018

I can’t wait until it’s finished!  It’s so exciting to see things finally progressing a bit.  Let me tell you, paying cash as you go is a whole lot slower than paying with credit, but it feels so good to know that, as we finish something, we don’t have a big credit card bill to contend with for the next several months/years! 

So, there’s phase 1!  Now, on to phase 2!