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Ok… head on over to

www.AnotherNewSeason.com

please excuse the dust and all the not-so-perfect formatting of my page. I’m still learning the ropes but I wanted to invite all of you over to see what’s new!

This will be the new home of Another New Season.

I’m excited to be able to expand and improve on my blog. Hopefully you will all find some useful tips, tricks and just plain fun info there! Stay tuned spring cleaning is about to begin, more adventures in the garden and lots more to come!

See you there –

Donna

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Today I hit the grocery store to stock up on healthy food so I can start the woman’s weight-loss program at the gym I go to. The program is called Weigh Way Less  (cute name huh?). It was created by the nutritionist at the gym. It’s fairly easy to follow but it will be a huge change for me (which I need!!).

Here is a photo of everything I got at the store:

Grocery Shopping

 

I have NEVER spent so much money at the grocery store in one visit – it was a bit overwhelming! Our usual budget for groceries is only $40-50 per week because I use coupons. Sad thing is that no one has coupons for fresh veggies or fruit!

The great thing is now I am stocked up for at least 2 weeks of healthy meals. I got a good deal on bulk tilapia, steaks and salmon, which I will cut up and freeze. The veggie steamers were only $1 each (usually I would have coupons for these and get them for free, but alas, I had none!). I also scored a yummy Kashi meal for free! I think next time I’ll hit Aldis first for the Veggies, at least until the farm stands are open or our garden is growing! It’s all worth it!

I’m going to work on writing up a menu for the month of April (Yes the entire month!!) I’m hoping that this will help me to be prepared so I don’t fall in to my old habits!

One trick, if I can call it that, is that I cook up a bunch of meals on Sundays for the week (mainly for lunches) so that all I have to do is pop the meal out of the freezer and heat it up! I also try to pre-package some healthy snacks into little baggies.

More on all of this soon!

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We had a nice trip to New England last week and are now home and ready to get life back in order. I have huge aspirations for what I can get done this week but I have to remind myself that I need to be realistic!

This week I’ll share a few little travel tips I came up with while I was away with the kids last week.

I’m also hosting an Easter Party on Thursday and I hope to share some of the ideas and plans we have for that too!

I’ll also post a late Meal Plan Mondaysometime today. I’m starting a weight-loss program at the gym that I just started going to which means I have to spend a bit more time planning meals and being organized in the kitchen! I’m hoping to post some new, healthy, yummy recipes soon too!

But right now I’m going to go get my little girl who is crying out “Mommy? I’m awake – come and get me!!”

 

More posts to come later today!! Be sure to check back!

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Yes, I’m going to write a post about my Blackberry… It’s pink and I love it!!

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I begged my sweetie to get one for me when we decided to upgrade my phone. He must love me because he even let me get a PINK one!

Here is why I love my Blackberry

1. It reminds me to do everything and anything!

I love that I can type in my schedule, to do lists, shopping lists, notes even upload photos all from my computer! When I worked full-time I fell in love with Microsoft Outlook because of a book called Take Back Your Life! Using Microsoft Outlook to Get Organized and Stay Organized. It is fantastic when your scrambling balancing tons of tasks and don’t feel like you know where to start! I can put all of my info into my computer at home, connect the Blackberry and Ta-Da! it’s all there!

I even e-mail myself information that I might need when I’m away. For example I e-mailed myself a recipe I read online because I only had a minute and had to run out the door to the store. When I got there I opened up the e-mail on my Blackberry and grabbed the ingredients that I needed! We’ve done this with directions too, very handy. (Blackberry also has a built in map application that works great!)

2. It has internet access!

This is a blessing and sometimes a curse. It’s so wonderful when you’re waiting at the doctors office and don’t want to touch those germ infested magazines! One of the main reasons that I’m finding the internet so useful is that I can check my blog subscriptions from anywhere. I use Bloglines to track my favorite blogs so that when I don’t have enough computer time I can see what’s going on out there. (I do remember to actually go directly to those blogs to comment and do some “fund clicks” for my fellow bloggers who make money off of their blogs) I especially love being able to go to a devotional website that I love Internet Cafe Devotionals. This way I can at least get a 5 minute devotional in even when I’m busy.

3. It takes great photos and videos

You’d be surprised how nice the photos come out from this little phone. I’ve been pretty happy with the quality so far. One trick I’ve learned is to use the camera to remember things. For example I was at Barnes and Noble the other day and saw a book that I thought I would like sometime and I didn’t have time to open up my “wish list” document on my BB and type in the info so I quickly (and discretely) took a photo of the book. Another example was when I’m at the fabric store I take photos of fabrics that I like so that I can remember later. I’ve read that some people take a photo of where they parked their car, a color of makeup you like, a picture of their luggage and it’s contents when your traveling in case it gets lost etc. There are lots of great ways to use your phone to remember things!

4. It’s pink

I never thought I’d be carrying a pink phone but there is one big reason I wanted a pink phone. Less chance of someone stealing it. At least that is my opinion. I’m probably completely wrong here! It’s girlie and I love it!

5. Oh yah,  I can call people

It is a phone after all 🙂

Am I alone here, am I the only geek out here ??

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wfmwbannerkristen

I’m participating in Works For Me Wednesdays today! Be sure to check out all the other great ideas at We Are That Family

I’m an idea person. Is anyone else out there like me? I always have a ton of ideas in my brain but if I don’t write them down then it’s a lost cause. I love projects, crafts, cooking and planning events. To keep all of that organized I used to have papers all over the place and a Microsoft Word file for  each idea. It got very unorganized, until I found Microsoft One Note!

One Note is like having a notebook on your computer. Sounds so exciting right?!? Not really. But it is. Here is a screen-shot of one of my “Notebooks” in One Note…

My Cookbook:

 

one-note-screen-shot

I’ve been using this cookbook to record all the recipes that I find online and want to try. All I do is copy the recipe off the web and past it on to a ‘page’ in one note.

Each notebook has tabs at the top and tabs down the right side. The top tabs are used as “Catergories’ or ‘Sections. I use the top tabs to divide my cookbook in to catergories like you see above (Appitizers, Breakfast, Breads, Beef Entrees, Beans, Baking, Chicken Entrees, etc.).  The side tabs are the individual ‘pages’ or recipes.

If you copy and paste something from the web or from another document on your computer a link will appear at the bottom of the page. That link will direct you back to the original. This is super helpful when you copy things off of websites and can’t remember where you found it! I love it!

Here are a few other ‘notebooks’ that I have in One Note

  • Craft Notebook: I use  to copy and paste tutorials and ideas.
  • Blog Notebook: I use to organize the ideas and posts for my blog and a
  • Home Notebook: I use to organize ideas I find online for decorating, gift ideas, planning holidays and garden. Many of these pages will soon be printed out and into my Home Management Book – more on that soon!)

What?? You don’t have One Note?? You can read more about it at the official Microsoft website. If you don’t want to shell out so much dough I found some similar products onine that do pretty much the same thing. I’m sure there are others but this is what I could find this morning. Some of these are free so check them out! 

Google Notebook, EverNotePersonalBrain, Circus Ponies

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Menu Plan Monday

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Well we spent most of last week and this entire weekend sick. It really helped to have our meals planned out ahead of time, I skipped a day or two and we ate leftovers

Here’s the menu:

Breakfast:

Banana Muffins, Pancakes (Fiber One makes a pancake mix that is so delicious!), Quiche (I’ll try to post this recipe tomorrow – it’s so easy)

Lunch:

Leftovers, PB&J, Salads for me, Ravioli or Mac N Cheese

Snacks:

Apples, Grapes, Granola bars, Goldfish

Dinners:

Monday: Burgers on the grill, baked french fries and Salad (I’m going to try to make my own ranch dressing it sounds so good)

Tuesday: Lasagna (from the freezer, we never had it last week), Salad and homemade breadsticks

Wednesday: Soup and Salad Night – Basil Tortellini Bean Soup (I’ll triple the recipe and freeze 2 batches)

Thursday: Orange Soy Marinated Pork Chops, Green Beans, Rice and Applesauce 

Friday: Leftover Night – maybe a babysitter and a date night with hubby? Hint, hint. I wonder if he even reads my blog…

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Menu Plan Monday

Menu Plan Monday

Here is my menu for the week. Taking the time to plan the meals for the week has been saving me so much time and stress! I’m also realizing buying a chest freeze was a great investment! I spent 2 days last week bulk cooking. I made a huge batch of rice, beans, banana muffins, cheesy rice casserole and pancakes. It feels good to know that we have food in the freezer ready to go! Our “cooking club” does the exchange this week too so I have to figure out what I’ll make for that and prepare those meals this week too. On top of this I’m going to attempt to potty train our 2 1/2 year old daughter!! It will be a busy week!

Now for the menu:

 

Breakfasts: Quiche, Cereals, Banana Muffins, Yogurt

Lunches: Ravioli’s, Grilled Cheese sandwiches and soup, Leftovers.

Dinners:

Monday: “Cheesy” mushroom Chicken (recipe adapted from Everything Moms recipe) with Rice and Spinach Casserole

Tuesday: Chicken Enchiladas

Wednesday: Soup and Salad nite! I may try to make this Caesar salad recipe

Thursday: Lasagna w/ Salad (thanks to the “cooking club”)

Friday: Homemade Pizza

Saturday: Leftovers

Sunday: Baked Chicken Breast, Parmesan Crusted Mashed Potatoes (*recipe below), Carrots and peas, no knead rolls

Parmesan Crusted Mashed Potatoes

3 lbs white potatoes, peeled and quartered

Salt

1 stick butter

1/2-1 cup milk or light cream

1/2 cup sour cream

1/2-1 cup grated cheddar cheese

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese

Pepper

Cook potatoes in a large pot of boiling water with salt, 15-20 minutes, until tender. Drain. Put back in pot over burner to let extra water evaporate. Whip potatoes with butter, while whipping on low add sour cream and milk until desired consistency is reached. Pepper to taste. Fold in cheddar cheese. Put in a casserole or individual ramekin dishes. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake for 10 minutes at 350° (you can also put the mashed potatoes in the refrigerator until you are ready to bake.) This is a great side dish to make ahead of time!

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