Saturday, December 29, 2012

Bulk Cooking

Way back in August before the start of the crazy fall sports season and the start of school I did some bulk meal prep. Some recipes worked , and other recipes not so much. I made cookies mixes, brownie mix, pancake mix , muffin mix, baking mix, and a lot of dump chicken.

The first step is to make a plan on what you want to prepare and find recipes that you like or want to try.Then it's on to making a shopping list, I do not stop and bulk prepare food in the same day so a Friday afternoon was allotted to shopping, and the last free Saturday I would have for awhile was set aside for the bulk cooking. 

On the bulk cooking day I had my husband take the kids out for the day, I work best at a cooking this much if I am home alone. 

I pre printed out my recipes into a notebook and used sheet protectors so the recipes might have a chance of surviving the day.

I made 10 sugar cookie bags, 10 pb cookie bags, 10 oatmeal cookie bags and 10 chocolate chip bags. This recipe worked great prepared out of storage for the first 2 months, but toward the end I think the baking powder got old. So in order not to waste the food I  use 2 bags, a bit more flour and baking powder and bake in a baking dish to make  more of a bar cookie.

Cookie bags all ready for the pantry

Next up was the pancake mix which worked great and I loved being able to use 1/2 whole wheat and 1/2 white four to make a pancake mix the kids enjoyed. The muffin mix I kept in a big tin and that worked great for making muffins quickly I just added pumpkin, apple, banana, blueberry for what ever flavor muffin we wanted. The baking mix was ok, not the best but it worked.

Someone must have come early from the trip out with dad. Just in time to help Mom clean up the baking mess and get ready for the chicken mess.

Next up was the bags of chicken, I used a 40 lb box of boneless chicken breasts. First I set out all the spices, and other items that I was going to need.

Then I labeled all the bags with what was going into them, and began to cut up the chicken into serving potions and most bags were made for 8 people eating dinner.

Then it was on to seasoning all the bags.

When this was done I stacked them all flat into a basket and placed into the freezer  This was dinner most Tuesday when we had not only field hockey for Kat, three different soccer teams for the boys but also piano lessons  I just tossed in the crock-pot in the morning before work and then set up the rice cooker before piano lessons and we would have dinner ready to go at 6.

It's been five months since I have done this and we are just finishing it all up, so time to make a new plan and budget and re fill the freezer in Feb.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas Cookie Party

During December I had two cookies parties for the kids, one was for my son Aidan's 1st grade friends and the other was for Kathryn's friends. I will say that I survived and will do it again next year, he had 6 friends over as there was a illness making it's way through first grade and 4 of his friends couldn't make it.

We held the party right after school so that the kids could ride the bus to my house, and pick up was 5:30 so the party was about 1 1/2 hours long.

I had pre made the sugar cookies the weekend before the party and stocked up on all types of fun toppings  the frosting was a simple butter frosting and my helper tasted it before the party and declared it good.

There was pink and white frosting and many different types of cookie shapes.

There were smiles on all the faces, and the kids ate one or two of their cookies, and made a plate full to take home.

They also each made a cookie that went on a plate for their teacher, which Aidan took in the next day to make sure that Mrs. Ludwig got her cookies.

Decorating cookies takes a lot of concentration.

Then it was time for a Christmas movie and snack of veggies and dip, apple juice and English muffin pizzas

We ended the night with a time filler of paper, crayons, and stickers.

Things to think about doing differently next time are, snack and craft first, then cookies and then the movie.

For me the best part was cuddling Aidan at bed time and him telling me that it was his best day ever.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Rick and Ann's baby Shower

Well I am working on catching up on some blogging , this lovely shower took place Thanksgiving weekend

Tables all set for the guests

Thank you to Rachel and my mom and sisters for making these from my crazy ideas

Center pieces made by my mom

Games to play

Door Prizes for all

Prizes for Games

Cake table

Cake made by Sarah

Cookies made by mom lots of cookies

Cup cakes made by mom and the girls

All the food ready to serve

I get to help 

Whose idea was it to make this, Margery's and where is she?

If I drink more water then I will eat less cookies

A turtle fruit bowl

The mom to be

You want me to do what?

The scarf Sarah made as a door prize

It was a great shower full of fun, family, and food.Looking forward to the new baby arriving.