But I don’t wannnnaaa go to Wally-World!!!!

When my husband and I got married, we were dead broke. As in, a $7 bottle of wine was too much except on very special occasions kinda broke. To manage this level of tight budget, I consolidated my grocery shopping into only one trip every two weeks. I planned it out down to the penny…every single meal and household need for two blasted weeks. This usually took hours, but it kept me from accidently bankrupting us in a moment of bad-blondie-mama-math.

As the years passed, this method made even more sense, because $4-a-gallon gas and a 30 minute drive to the store meant that mistakes on my part would cost gas money we didn’t need to spend. Shopping for a two weeks stretch usually takes a couple of hours at the Wally-World (or Hell as some of us call it), but I never minded too much. When you have not left your house in days or spoken to anyone over the age of 5, a trip to Wally-World is downright exciting.

But times have changed my friend. Now, I am hitting the Wally-World after work…in heels…and I still shop for two weeks like an idiot. Do you have any idea the things I would rather be doing than going grocery shopping tonight? Hmmmm,

  • I could clean the bathroom
  • I could read War and Peace
  • I could hide in my closet and pretend I am on vacation…that is until the boys find me and skewer me with a light saber or two
  • I could rearrange my Netflix queue
  • I could get over my aversion to dental floss
  • I could tackle the laundry monster head-on

Goodness, if I would rather do laundry than go grocery shopping tonight you know this situation is getting desperate. Think we could rig up a glass of wine like a horse-and-carrot scenario? That would be the fastest trip you ever saw…think Roadrunner dust clouds and skid marks.

It may be time to re-evaluate my grocery shopping methods….

Learning to Cook in High Heels

The past couple of months have certainly been a test of Mommy endurance. Obviously, I am now working, which is still a trip. Youngest started school, which was traumatic for both of us, and promptly caught every germ he had missed in his life with a stay-at-home mom. We’ve been through swine flu and four separate stomach viruses in less than two months, all while I try to settle into the new job and not look like a yahoo. (And of course what better time to catch swine flu than the week before my first big business trip?)

However, I can finally say that I am getting life under control and adjusting to the new routine of a working mom. The transition has taken a time and patience, and copious amounts of red wine.

In the meantime, I am getting a crash course in how to make dinner in less than 45 minutes. Hoooolllyy cow, if that is a bit harder than I expected. I have been guinea-pigging my poor family to death with new recipes in an effort to streamline my weeknights. This endeavor has definitely been hit and miss, but I am committed to home cooked meals, job or no job. We have had some success, like the following recipe I got from (where else?) southernliving.com. It is yummy, but I recommend serving it over rice…not enough sauce for noodles in my opinion.

Balsamic Garlic-and-Herb Chicken Thighs


Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 8 skinned and boned chicken thighs
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 (10-ounce) can diced tomatoes and green chiles, undrained
  • 1 envelope Lipton Savory Herb and Garlic soup/dip mix
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onions (about 4)
  • Hot cooked egg noodles or rice

Preparation

  1. Combine flour, salt, and pepper. Dredge chicken in flour mixture.
  2. Brown half of chicken in 1 tablespoon hot oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 4 minutes on each side. Remove chicken from skillet. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken and oil, reserving drippings in skillet.
  3. Add wine and vinegar to skillet, stirring to loosen particles from bottom of skillet; cook 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes and green chiles and garlic-and-herb sauce mix until combined. Return chicken to skillet. Cook, uncovered, over medium heat 5 minutes or until done. Stir in 1/4 cup green onions. Serve over hot cooked egg noodles; sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup green onions.

I won’t bore you with the stories of dinner failures…you have probably heard my family revolt at the dinner table from your house.