July 2015 Pantry Challenge

IMG_5833So, my freezer and refrigerator are packed to the gills.  There are a few reasons why this happened.

Sprout’s had organic Red Delicious apples for .48 a pound.  I bought a case, which is 40 pounds.  (How sweet is it that 40 pounds of organic apples only cost me $19.20!?!  Sweet!)

Fry’s had frozen vegetables on sale for .67 cents, limit 4.  I went there 5 days in a row and got 20 bags of frozen veggies.

We ordered a rather large for us order of meat from U.S. Wellness Meats (affiliate link).  Now that we’re in Arizona and the heat is 100+ every day, I noticed that when I ordered 7 or 8 pounds of meat at a time, some of it came partially thawed despite the dry ice and freezer packs inside.  This isn’t really a big deal; U.S. Wellness Meats says its fine to simply refreeze it, which I do.  However, I thought that maybe if I bought a larger quantity, it would stay frozen better.  I’m happy to report that the strategy did work, but now our freezer is very full of good quality meats.

IMG_5841We turned off our refrigerator/freezer in the garage.  America’s Cheapest Family said that not running a refrigerator in the garage during the summer can save up to $15 a month on the electric bill, so once the heat started climbing, we shut it off and moved everything to our indoor refrigerator/freezer combo and our one deep freezer we have going.

So, now that we’re so stocked up, it’s pantry challenge time!

I know that I plan for this pantry challenge to go on for at least two weeks.  I’m pretty sure I can stretch it for three weeks, and I’d be delighted if I could have it go for 4 weeks.

However, my husband likes to eat a certain way (lots of fresh veggies and fruits), so once he starts complaining about the food he’s served, I’ll probably stop the challenge.

During the pantry challenge, I will not spend more than $100 total for food; everything else we eat will come from the pantry, freezer and refrigerator.

I’ll blog every Tuesday about what we ate during the week, what we bought, and how we’re doing on the challenge.


Our Homeschool Wrap Up, 2015-2016, Week 4

This week was supposed to be a quiet week at home, but, well, it didn’t end up that way.  :)  Isn’t that almost always the case?

Fun Activities

This week we did several fun activities.  I took the kids to see Penguins of Madagascar.  (Thank goodness for cheap summer movie tickets and air conditioning in this heat!)

We found out that a traveling boys choir from Minnesota was in town, so we took the afternoon off to see them.  All three kids loved the performance, and I loved that it was free.  The boys did great!

I also took the kids to a music and dance class.  This class meets once a week in a member’s house, and the kids get to sing, “play” musical instruments, and dance.  Afterwards, they have a snack and play with their friends.  It’s been a fun thing to do this summer.

School Work

Bookworm got back his standardized test results, and we were pleased, especially with math.

Bookworm took the standardized test for the first time in 3rd grade, and he did great on everything except math.

In 4th grade, he scored even lower on math.  (That was our first year homeschooling, and when he was 2/3rds of the way done with 4th grade, I dropped our math program, switched to Math U See, and went WAY back to the basics.  I knew he would struggle in math his whole life if he didn’t get the basics down.)

For 5th grade, he tested exactly where he should be in math.  That alone speaks to me about the power of homeschooling.  A traditional school wouldn’t have been able to tailor his education as he needed.  I’m so glad we can.

IMG_5828The girls and I finished Caroline’s Secret Message and have now gone back to the first book in the series, Meet Caroline.  So far, so good.

Bookworm and I finished Bound for Oregon.  I loved learning that it was based on a true story.  Coincidentally, Bookworm is studying Oregon for geography this week.  I plan on showing him Aerial America: Oregon on Netflix today as a supplement.

We also finished reading Tales from the Circle C Ranch.  We’ve loved the two books we’ve read so far in this series, so we’re planning to buy more to include in our homeschool this upcoming year.

IMG_5830For Bookworm’s Veritas Press history, we’re supposed to be reading With Lee in Virginia, but we are instead listening to the Heirloom Audio “audio theater” version we’re currently reviewing for the Crew.  (Talk about perfect timing!)  This is the first time we’ve implemented an audio presentation instead of reading, and so far we’re really enjoying it.

Other than that bit of excitement, we’ve just been chugging along, trying to get at least a full quarter of the school year done this summer before we get busy again in the fall.

How was your week? 

I shared this post at Christian Fellowship Friday, My Week in Review,  Homeschool Mother’s Journal, and Weekly Wrap Up.

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