Frisco HIS Book Sale & My 1st Tackle it Tuesday

Tackle It Tuesday Meme

This is my first time joining in the Tackle it Tuesday meme. The Tackle it Tuesday meme is up to #103. Pop over and get caught up.  My Tackle it Tuesday is to set up the garage for the FHIS Book Sale drop off. This is an unusual project because I will actually be taking on other people’s clutter in used books for 5 days. But I have to tidy up the garage and set up the tables for this project.

Here’s the information about the Frisco HIS Used Book and Curriculum Sale
Saturday, May 17, 2008

12pm – 4pm

First Baptist Church, Frisco
7901 W Main Street
Frisco, TX 75034Come find some real treasures to help in your homeschool journey or
just to fill your bookshelves. Find books and curriculum for math, history, science, language arts, art, music, foreign language, preschool, kindergarten, and games and videos.

This is a cash event: Bring lots of $5s and $1s. Once you have chosen your items, you will put the asking price in the envelope attached to the item. Please Do Not SEAL OR REMOVE THE ENVELOPE. If the envelope says that they are willing to take a check, then you can write a check and put that into the envelope (and write one check to a seller for multiple books). The cashiers will remove each envelope,
check to make sure the correct amount is in each envelope, and seal the envelopes.



For more information about buying or selling at this sale, visit

Have fun and see you there! 






Menu Plan Monday

Menu Plan Monday meme

Jean Butts Independent Distributor

4 Meals in 4 Minutes Fits Easily into your Current Meal Schedule

Michele doesn’t have a blog and she had a great idea that she told me about, so I’m going to share it with you!  Last week I shared the 4 Meals in 4 Minutes concept with Michele. She took home the menu plan with the grocery list and the box of Homemade Gourmet Original 4 Meals in 4 Minutes products is being sent to her. She made the first four entrees of 4 Meals in 4 Minutes. She made …

  • Garlic Basil Chicken
  • Grandmother’s Sunday Roast
  • Galic Lemon Pork Chops
  • Southwest Chicken

So before the first entree thaws out, she’ll have her box and be able to serve the sides that come with it for her family on Tuesday. She said they already have standard, kid friendly meals at home, so here’s her menu plan for the next few weeks (her husband works out of town during the week and returns home on weekends, so she doesn’t plan meals for weekends, she does what hubby wants to do.)

Monday – Spaghetti
Tuesday* – Garlic Basil Chicken
Wednesday – Tacos
Thursday* – Garlic Basil “planned-overs” over noodles as a hot pasta salad with steamed fresh vegetables.
FridayFamily Pizza night

Monday – Spaghetti
Tuesday* – Southwest Chicken
Wednesday – Tacos
Thursday* – Southwest Wrap-Ups “planned-overs”
Friday – Family Pizza night

Monday – Spaghetti
Tuesday* – Garlic Lemon Chicken
Wednesday – Tacos
Thursday* – Garlic Lemon Chicken Salad “planned-overs”
Friday – Family Pizza night

Monday – Spaghetti
Tuesday* – Roast Chicken
Wednesday – Tacos
Thursday* – Roast Chicken Hoagies “planned-overs”
Friday – Family Pizza night

*Tuesday and Thursday will use the first of her 4 Meals in 4 Minutes meals and “planned-overs” (or planned left-overs). Michele is excited to try new meals and have a plan that she can do, even with 6 kids under 10 at home!

If you’re looking for a fun, simple way to have CHOICES for your meals that are healthy, fast, dining at home, please look at my Homemade Gourmet site or book your own 4 Meals in 4 Minutes demonstration.


Mother’s day

Image by Image Chef

Pizza Crust

Scrumptious Sundays
Many people have Pizza and a movie night on Friday nights and we hope to continue this as our children get older. Pizza for the family from the delivery joints is usually $22-$25 by the time they add delivery charge and you tip the guy at least the price of a gallon of gas. That is $1,300 per year! So why not make your own pizza? This could have been a Freezer Food Friday post because you can make more than one pizza crust and freeze or refrigerate some for other days. I like to make my pizza crust for Friday night on Friday morning, then I leave it in the microwave to rise through the afternoon. Then at dinner time, I punch it down and shape it right before we bake it.

Pizza Crust from Scratch

Adapted from Dana G

1 T Active Dry Yeast
1 C Warm Water (100-110 degrees)
2 C Unbleached All-Purpose Flour or Bread Flour
1 C Whole Wheat Flour
2 T to 1/4 C Wheat Gluten (optional, I sub flour)
3 T Cornmeal
up to 1/3 C More Warm Water
1 1/2 t Salt (mandatory)
3 T Olive Oil

Just dumping all this in together will work in a mixer with a dough hook or in a bread machine. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. If using a mixer, let it knead for 5 to 10 minutes. Prepare toppings.
If making by hand, combine yeast and warm water in a mixing bowl. Let stand for about 10 minutes or until the yeast softens. In the meantime, measure the flours, gluten and cornmeal into a separate bowl & stir. One cup at a time, stir the flour mixture into the yeast mixture, beating vigorously after each addition with a wooden spoon until it is smooth. Add extra water, if needed. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and knead for 8 to 10 minutes. Place the kneaded dough in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in bulk. 
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  Punch dough down, and then add the salt and oil. Fold the dough over onto itself, and knead until the oil is absorbed. Either way, allow the dough to rest for 5 minutes. Grease a large baking stone or pizza pan. Roll and/or stretch the dough to fill the stone. Crimp the edge to form a slight lip or stuff with cheese and Italian Seasoning. For a thick crust, let rise. For thin, immediately proceed with topping and baking.
Here’s how my family likes ours topped: Spread tomato paste over the dough, leaving a 1/2 inch border around the edge. Sprinkle with Italian Seasoning and pepper. Top with grated mozzarella, ground beef that’s been cooked with onions and garlic, & whatever veggies I have on hand, usually diced or sliced zucchini or yellow squash, bell pepper, onion, tomato, and/or mushrooms. (I have to limit the amount of veggies so it doesn’t become a casserole.) Add a little more cheese and drizzle a little olive oil over all. Bake until the pizza is bubbling, about 10-12 minutes.
When my kids were little, I invited my friend and her kids over and gave some dough on a floured cutting board to each of the kids to roll, stretch, and top with their choice of toppings. I slid them onto a stone and baked them. They were delighted with their own little pizzas they had made themselves.

How to freeze Meal-sized portions

There are several methods to freezer meal sized portions. I’ll call them:

  • Jell-o mold method,  
  • Bag-in box method, 
  • Small bags inside zip-lock freeer bag, and
  • Single freezer bag method.

The last is actually the most simple method. For the single freezer bag method you simply place one meal worth of meat or leftovers into a quart or gallon freezer bag. I typically use gallon freezer bags for raw meat, so i can cook enough to make leftovers or “planned-overs.” Then amazingly the leftovers fit into a quart size zipper bag. If you can use the food to squish out the air toward the zipper, it seems to get more air out. The food will last longer with less air in the freezer bag. Typically you can count on a freezer bag for 90 days, but with all the air out the food can last up to a year. Juicier foods like soup last longer than dry foods like breads.

I most often use the small bags inside zip-lock freezer bag method for freezing “ingredients.” For this I use those very inexpensive baggies that fold over the sandwich without the zipper. I usually put between 1/4 cup to 1 cup portion of foods into the small baggie and fold it over. I carefully position the small bags in one layer into the larger freezer bag. Stop adding small bags when the larger freezer zip-lock bag is full one-inch from the top, squeeze the air out and zip it twice to be sure it closed completely. I use the baggies in zip-lock freezer bags method for pizza toppings, spaghetti/pizza sauce in 1-cup portions, seasoned cooked ground meat in 1-cup portions, left over sliced or shredded chicken or roast, left over fajita meat, etc.

Jill Bond, the author of Mega Cooking recommends the bag-in-box method to freeze the meal-sized portions. She says she collects multiple boxes of the same sized small cardboard boxes: cereal boxes, pasta boxes, cracker, and tea boxes in a variety of shapes and sizes. She places the edges of the zipper baggie over the edges of the box (like placing a liner in a trash can), so that the box holds up the bag while it is filled. Next she squeezes the air out and zips the bag without taking it out of the box. Freeze the bag inside the box. Once the food is frozen it will have taken on the shape of the box, so that you can stack your frozen food like bricks. If freezer space is tight, this will be important. This is extremely effective for liquids like sauces and soups. BTW, if space is valuable, you’ll need to limit the amount of “ingredients” you freeze and freeze “whole meals” or “entrees” instead.

Finally, use the Jell-o mold method, when you freeze a casserole in a pan. It is very important that you LINE the casserole dish before you freeze it. I prefer to use plastic wrap or waxed paper to line the pan, then pour or layer the casserole ingredients in the pan. Then, I wrap the pan with tin foil and freeze it. When it is completely frozen I pull the pan out and warm the pan slightly so it will POP off the frozen casserole. Do this in the same way you get a Jell-o out of the Jell-o mold. In fact many meatloaf and casserole recipes will freeze and serve well in Jell-o molds or bundt cake pans. Now that you have the pan-shaped, frozen casserole out of the pan, you can peel the wax paper off the casserole very easily. Then re-wrap the whole casserole and put it into a freezer bag or use freezer paper. If you freeze a 13×9 pan you will need a 2 gallon zipper bag to hold it. This method works well for small freezers because you can stack the food into the freezer like books. Some people prefer to use tin foil to line the pan so that you can simply put the casserole back into the pan to cook it and use the tin foil to avoid messy clean up. Try both and see what you prefer. I scooped tin foil out of the cooked casserole pan and got the taste of tin foil on my fork enough times that I now prefer waxed paper. 

If freezer space is not tight you can even freeze soups, chopped nuts, flour, cornmeal, seeds, oatmeal, shredded cheese, etc in canning jars or medium size canisters. Be sure to leave one-inch of air space for expansion of liquid ingredients.

Whatever method you use be sure you label and date the outer bag. I use the date that I froze the food. Having meals in your freezer now allows you to make CHOICES when it’s dinner time, instead of scrambling to find something to fix! We’ll write more on the benefits of having meals in the freezer next time.

My 1st Slow Cooker Thursday post

Slow Cooking Thursday Meme

Homemade Gourmet Southwest Chicken in the Slow Cooker

When you host a Homemade Gourmet 4 Meals in 4 Minutes presentation, I give you the mixes to make for your guests. Tonight’s hostess, Kim R, chose the Southwest Chicken to put into her Slow Cooker.

She simply put 3-5 lbs of skinless, boneless, chicken breasts (4-8 pieces) into her slow cooker. Then she poured a 10 oz. can of diced tomatoes with green chilies on top. Last she sprinkled the HG Southwest Seasoning. After 4-6 hours on low in the slow cooker, her family dinner and the food for her party will be done!

When I get there, I will put 4 Meals into her freezer in 4 Minutes, and show the guests how to do the same!

We usually earn $100+ at a homeshow as a HG consultant. Could you use an extra $300 this month?
If so, visit then click the tab at the top that says “JOIN US.”

My Gallon of Spaghetti Sauce

Works for Me Wednesday meme

This is my first “Works for Me Wednesday” entry.

My Gallon of Spaghetti Sauce

adapted from Mega Cooking page 357

Use your large dutch oven to combine
2 15-ounce cans tomato sauce
1 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes
5 6-oz cans tomato paste
10 Tbsp HG Spaghetti Seasoning
5 Tbsp dried oregano
1 1/4 cup chopped onions
1 1/4 cup chopped bell peppers
1 1/4 cup chopped mushrooms
5 cloves garlic crushed

Bring to boil over medium heat. Remember, tomato-based sauces have a very low boiling point, so stir often. Reduce heat to simmer. Cover. Allow to simmer for 1 hour.

Use some spaghetti sauce for tonight and freeze the rest in 1 or 2 cup portions. You can use the baggie in zip-lock freezer bag method or the bag in box method to freeze the meal-size portions. Label and date the outer bag.

Use this as it is for pizza sauce. To use this as spaghettie sauce add 1/4 cup water to 1 cup sauce or add 1 cup water to 8 cups of sauce. Basically, add water as needed for desired consistency of spaghetti sauce. Add meat or meatballs to use with Spaghetti dinner. OR use this sauce in any recipe calling for canned spaghetti sauce, manicotti, lasagna, etc.!