Frugal Family Footnotes
Family-friendly recipes sought
November 14, 2011
by Kristi Hiivala

I am not sure whose idea Daylight Saving Time was, but I am quite confident that they did not have small children living at home when they decided to enact the time change. It’s quite the cruel reminder to us sleep-deprived parents that not only do we fail to get the suggested eight hours of sleep each night, but now we have to help celebrate with those who get an extra hour of sleep while we struggle to help toddlers tell time and insist they can’t wake up until the clock starts with at least a “5.”

It’s been two weeks since the time change and we are still feeling the effects at our house: kids nodding off to sleep at the dinner table and the reality that our daily newspapers don’t even get delivered until we are on our second cup of coffee.

Being up an hour earlier has allowed me the extra time to look more closely at the advertisements, in particular the grocery store savings. In our community, weekly ads list what products are on sale for a particular week, and a little extra time spent following this information can add up to a lot of savings.

Our local paper regularly provides the ads – in both print and online. Our grocery stores also have websites that list items on sale. Combining a weekly sale with a high value coupon has led me to several incredible savings. Who doesn’t appreciate some groceries at more than 80 percent off their original price??

Grocery retailers generally follow a cycle of six to eight weeks. That means if you plan it out accordingly, you can buy extras of the items currently on sale, coupled with coupons, and save more money.

The extra groceries generally are stored in an area apart from your high-traffic cupboards. This stash of extra food is referred to as a “stockpile.” I have not yet started a stockpile, as I have to find a space in my house to have one. But as I learn more and more about couponing, I am realizing how valuable a stockpile can be.

In addition to taking advantage of the current sales and coupons available, I like to take time over the weekend to look through recipes and get an idea of how to stretch my groceries to feed our family of six with limited leftovers.

My household is not a big fan of leftovers, and I absolutely hate throwing away extra food, so it becomes a (fun) challenge for me to make the right amount of food to allow the entire family to leave the table with a belly full of food.

A great place to learn of family-friendly recipes is from your own friends and family. My stash of recipes (currently residing in a box above my refrigerator until that day when I have an extra eight hours to devote to organizing it) has grown greatly since I have asked for recipe ideas from other mothers. You know, “chefs for the pickiest eaters in the world!”

If you have a recipe that you would love to share, this is a great time to check into the local Early Childhood Center!

As some of you may know already, I am a member of the current ECFE advisory council and we are putting together a cookbook fundraiser to benefit our local early childhood center. The council is seeking recipes from our own local families to print in the cookbook. If you would like to submit a recipe, all you have to do is:

• Visit www.cookbookpublishers.com/utypeit/login

• Enter username: dcecfe; password: cookbook

• Submit up to three of your favorite recipes

• Our council will verify and review the recipes.

It’s that easy!

Deadline to submit recipes is Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2011. The cookbook will be available at the Early Childhood Center in late winter or early spring.

I may still be looking for that extra hour of sleep, but in the meantime, I intend to keep shopping for deals.

Happy savings!

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