How To Raise Money Savvy Kids In Today’s Modern World

Grab your own copy of our Freebie Printable Spend or Save Cheat Sheet below!

 

There’s unrest swirling in the air amongst men and boys everywhere this month as Nintendo revealed its latest new gaming system, The Switch.

Like a swarm of bees to honey, they simply can’t help but be lured by siren calls. And of course, amongst that very swarm includes my husband and our 6-year-old, son.

Yes, of course, bzzz… 😉

 

“So Dad, how many dow lahs does the Switch costs?” asked my inquisitive 6-year-old.

 

“It’s a lot of money, buddy. Why do you ask?” my husband responded.

 

“Well, because I want to see if I have enough dow lahs to buy one. They have the new Mario Kart game on it!” he exclaimed with a bounce.

 

“Umm, it’s like $400 dollars buddy…” my husband replied sheepishly.

 

“$400 dow lahs! What?! Forget that!” responded my 6-year-old in total disbelief.

 

And with that, my husband and I both exchanged a look that can only be described as kindred spirits. Because in that very split second glance we shared between two loving parents (You know, that very same depth-of-silence look that was coined by Mr. Jon Hamm himself from Mad Men.

Yeah, exactly that, that happened) we both knew, we’ve done it.

 

Yep, we got through to him, our first-born babe. Somewhere along the way, this little squirt of just shy of 7 years old, had just learned a very powerful and very important lesson that most folks much older than he has yet to figure out.

And it just about blew these very proud parents away. It was honest to goodness, humbling and oh so very satisfying to not only hear him say that but to also know that he understood the value of saving what little money he has earned in his short life thus far to sacrifice it for a much-lauded after a gaming system.

What wise words uttered from the mouth of a child. This mama bear could not have been more proud.  🙂

 

And here I was, worried that I was not doing nearly enough to teach my kids some of the much-needed basics they need to know about money.

 

We see it all the time. It’s all over the news. Headlines plastered across our screens about the national debt crisis ballooning out-of-control. And yet everyone, including our very own family, are constantly bombarded with temptations to buy! Buy! Buy!

 

Not only that, it is as if no one could care less about the equally astounding mortgage and student loans debt. We have come to accept this as the norm of living in American society today, and it has eaten us alive. (Yep, even us, we’re guilty of that as well.)

 

But of course, someone’s gotta be able to pay for this burgeoning debt.

But who? And with what money, right?

Credit Cards aren’t gonna cut it.

And there it goes, from one shiny object to the next shiny object, like a domino effect.

We can’t help but to buy into it.

 

But what if we can summon up the courage to say no and resist these temptations from spinning out-of-control?

Wouldn’t that be nice?

 

Heck, my 6-year-old just about schooled us on the very thing we deal with on a daily basis. So I know, it is well within our power to harness our courage and resist spending money needlessly.

 

Oftentimes when we are faced with the temptation to buy that cool new shiny object, it is so easy just to give in and justify ourselves by saying that we worked hard for it and so we deserve it. But maybe instead of thinking that we are denying ourselves the pleasure of this cool new shiny object, we begin to tell ourselves and believe that we are actually saving up our money for something bigger and better.

 

Take it as having a peace of mind, to save for a rainy day, because something better will come along and replace that once shiny cool new object that is now dull and forgotten. You are saving yourself a world of grief from having to deal with being in debt, all for a very brief instance of gratification.

 

Now in full disclosure- I have not yet explained this concept to my kids. And by the same token, I should not expect them to already understand the concept of a need versus a want.

But I have a sneaky suspicion that, as little, as they are, they’ve already known more than I give them credit for. I am constantly amazed by what comes out of their mouths every day.

 

So have heart, continue to do what you do at home and be open and honest with your family members when it comes to how you manage your family’s finances.

  • Continue to compare deals and shop for the best prices together.
  • Continue to clip your coupons and pick up items that are the best bang for your buck.
  • Continue to share your frugal ideas with your children, because you will be pleasantly surprised to see what they have just learned from watching you in action (real-life situations here folks!)

 

Pick a good time (preferably after breakfast) one day and take your kids to the store (on purpose! – I’m holding in a laugh right now as I’m writing this.) Negotiate with them before entering the store.

If they continue to show you good behavior during your shopping trip that you will reward them with 1 item of their choice. Let them pick out a toy that they want.

Then let them pay the cashier. Make sure to let them know that this is a reward-a special treat you are giving them for working so hard.

 

But yes-do it on purpose anyway because it’s a valuable lesson for them. And yes, I’ve done it myself too, several times as a matter of fact.

That is why I can definitely say from my own experience that it actually sunk through to my kids!

 

Here is how we explain the concept of money to our kids:

 

What is money?

  • Money is a type of currency that is used all over the world by everyone.
  • In the U.S., money can be traded in paper form or in coins.

 

When do we use money?

  • We use money whenever we have a need or a want for something.
  • Money can be traded for goods or services (doing something for someone else).

 

Why do we use money?

  • Money is a means to an end (it lets us buy the things we need and want).
  • A need is something that you cannot live without (like food, water, clothing, shelter).
  • A want is something that you do not need to live (like gum, candy, a bubble blaster, or the latest Nintendo gaming system, the Switch! 😉 )

 

Where do we use money?

  • Money is used everywhere and by everyone in the world.

 

How is money used?

  • We earn money by working for it. (You do a job and you get paid money for doing that job.)
  • People work so that they can earn money to buy the things that they need to live, like food & water.
  • You can also receive money as a gift for a special occasion (such as: birthdays, weddings, or holidays)
  • You can also choose to give money away as a gift or a donation to a charity (a place that does something good for others like an animal shelter or homeless shelter).

 

I hope this gives you an idea of what to say and how to communicate with your own kids about money. Our intent is to teach our kids about money as early as they are able to count.

In doing so, we hope that they will become more financially responsible as they become adults. As their parents, we believe it is our responsibility to bestow this knowledge onto our kids because we are their first teachers, and also because we have discovered that financial literacy is NOT taught in schools, even though it should be.

The next time you hear that ice cream truck come down your street, give your kids some money and let them pay for it. They will begin to have an understanding of what money is and how important it is to be able to save up for their very own treat.

Then give them two options:

 

Option A: Whether they would like to pay for the treat themselves

-or-

Option B: Whether they would prefer to go to the grocery store and pick up a variety pack for much cheaper.

 

Either way, ask for their opinion to see what they would say. Chances are, their answers will surprise even you when your kids have actually discovered the importance of being able to save up for their very own treat.

Here’s a fun free printable for you to print out and laminate to hang up in your kid’s room.

 

 

Whenever they see a new toy they want, ask them these 6 questions to see if it’s worth it for them to reconsider before they buy.

Make it a point to talk openly to each other about money, anytime you have the opportunity to do so with your kids so that it does not become a topic shrouded by mystery. It makes for a great conversation starter when you are trying to teach them about money concepts.

Enjoy!

 

Disclosure:

The purpose of this blog is to provide insight and enjoyment only. I am not nor do I claim to be an expert or professional in any manner. All opinions are 100% my own. Please do not copy any content from my website without my prior permission or written consent from me. However, you may link directly to my post for reference and to give credit.

Disclaimer:

This website contains affiliate links and sponsorships. I do not endorse nor would I recommend any products that I have not used nor trust to my readers. Thank you so much for your continued support in helping our small blog grow- at no costs to you whatsoever.

 

Contact:

Please contact me directly via email:  admin@fulloffortunes.com, if you have any questions and/or comments. Thanks for stopping by! J

Quick, Easy, & Mouth Watering, Beef Broccoli Stir Fry Recipe

 

This recipe was born out of the need to use up a large gallon size of Sweet Baby Ray’s Original BBQ Sauce.

Our family loves having Beef Broccoli Stir Fry for dinner, it’s one of our running staples.

We keep recipes like this one on a Family Favorites List especially for busy weeknights when there’s band practice or swim lessons to get to.

The last thing you want to worry about is fitting in a quick and healthy dinner that might also taste good too.

Having a Family Favorites List is a must-have when you are short on time and must do all-the-things.

Check out this Quick, Easy, & Mouth Watering, Beef Broccoli Stir Fry Recipe below and save yourself some time and moolah from having to call for takeout.

 

Quick, Easy, & Mouth Watering, Beef Broccoli Stir Fry Recipe

Yield: 8

Quick, Easy, & Mouth Watering, Beef Broccoli Stir Fry Recipe

Ingredients

  • 3 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • ½ Red Onion, sliced
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil or Vegetable Oil
  • 1/3 cup of Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 cup of Sesame Oil
  • 1 tbsp Sweet Baby Ray's Original BBQ Sauce
  • 1 tsp. Ketchup
  • 1 tsp Brown Sugar
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp White Granulated Sugar
  • ½ tsp Ground White Pepper
  • ½ tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Corn Starch
  • ½ cup of warm water
  • 1 small head of Broccoli Crown
  • 1 carrot, peeled & sliced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper
  • 1/2 orange bell pepper
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper
  • 1 can of Water Chestnuts, rinsed and drained
  • 1 handful/bunch of Sugar Snap Pea Pods
  • 1 can of Baby Corn, rinsed and drained
  • 1 lb Beef Sirloin Steak, thinly sliced

Instructions

  1. Marinate the beef sirloin in a separate bowl by adding sesame oil, bbq sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, salt, white granulated sugar, white pepper, black pepper, & a pinch of MSG (optional).
  2. Set beef aside and let marinate while prepping other ingredients.
  3. In a separate small bowl, add cornstarch to warm water and stir well to remove all lumps.
  4. Set aside to be used later.
  5. On medium heat, drizzle pan or wok with Olive/Vegetable Oil.
  6. Then add minced garlic to the oil to cook for about 2 minutes or until fragrant.
  7. Do not let the garlic burn or it will taste bitter and crunchy. (I’ve made this mistake once too many times. :/)
  8. Add the marinated beef to the hot pan or wok.
  9. Cook for about 5 minutes or until beef is done to desired wellness.
  10. Stir frequently to keep from burning.
  11. Lower your heat from medium to low and add the cornstarch mixture and the soy sauce to the cooked beef sirloin while stirring frequently.
  12. May need more water if the mixture is too thick or starts to burn due to high heat.
  13. Add all remaining vegetables to your wok: red onions, broccoli, carrots, water chestnuts, pea pods, & baby corn.
  14. Stir Fry quickly and make sure everything is well coated with sauce, about 15-30 minutes from the start of heating until ready to serve.
  15. Serve on a platter with a side of your favorite cooked white or brown rice.
  16. Optional: garnish with a handful of sliced scallions (green onions) or a few sprigs of cilantro right before serving.
  17. Enjoy! 😉
https://fulloffortunes.com/quickeasymouthwateringbeefbroccolistirfryrecipe/

 

Quick, Easy, & Mouth Watering, Beef Broccoli Stir Fry Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • ½ Red Onion, sliced
  • 3 tbsp Olive Oil or Vegetable Oil
  • 1/3 cup of Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 cup of Sesame Oil
  • 1 tbsp Sweet Baby Ray’s Original BBQ Sauce
  • 1 tsp. Ketchup
  • 1 tsp Brown Sugar
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp White Granulated Sugar
  • ½ tsp Ground White Pepper
  • ½ tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Corn Starch
  • ½ cup of warm water
  • 1 small head of Broccoli Crown
  • 1 carrot, peeled & sliced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper
  • 1/2 orange bell pepper
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper
  • 1 can of Water Chestnuts, rinsed and drained
  • 1 handful/bunch of Sugar Snap Pea Pods
  • 1 can of Baby Corn, rinsed and drained
  • 1 lb Beef Sirloin Steak, thinly sliced
  • Optional: garnish with a handful of sliced scallions (green onions) or a few sprigs of cilantro right before serving

 

Directions:

  • Marinate the beef sirloin in a separate bowl by adding sesame oil, bbq sauce, ketchup, brown sugar, salt, white granulated sugar, white pepper, black pepper, & a pinch of MSG (optional). Set beef aside and let marinate while prepping other ingredients.
  • In a separate small bowl, add cornstarch to warm water and stir well to remove all lumps. Set aside to be used later.

 

  • On medium heat, drizzle pan or wok with Olive/Vegetable Oil. Then add minced garlic to the oil to cook for about 2 minutes or until fragrant. Do not let the garlic burn or it will taste bitter and crunchy. (I’ve made this mistake once too many times. :/)

 

  • Add the marinated beef to the hot pan or wok. Cook for about 5 minutes or until beef is done to desired wellness. Stir frequently to keep from burning.

 

  • Lower your heat from medium to low and add the cornstarch mixture and the soy sauce to the cooked beef sirloin while stirring frequently. May need more water if the mixture is too thick or starts to burn due to high heat.

 

  • Add all remaining vegetables to your wok: red onions, broccoli, carrots, water chestnuts, pea pods, & baby corn. Stir Fry quickly and make sure everything is well coated with sauce, about 15-30 minutes from the start of heating until ready to serve.

 

  • Serve on a platter with a side of your favorite cooked white or brown rice.

 

  • Optional: garnish with a handful of sliced scallions (green onions) or a few sprigs of cilantro right before serving.

 

  • Enjoy! 😉

88 Ways To Celebrate Summer Break With Your Family

 

How Will You Celebrate Summer Break With Your Kids?

Goodbye school, hello summer! 🙂

So school is finally over for our kids this year, and they could not be any happier.

Not that they did not enjoy school, on the contrary, they actually do!

But more so that they have been counting down the days for summer vacation to finally arrive and bid farewell to a job well-done throughout the year.

I could not even bear to bring it up that them that summer does not officially begin until June 21st. But they could care less and I cannot blame them for it.

If I were still a kid, I would probably feel the same way, wouldn’t you? They are just ecstatic to finally be home, relax, and of course-sleep in.

However, that also means less time for this Mommy to get her stuff done while her kiddos are running amok at home! What’s a girl suppose to do?

Make a plan! That’s what we’ll do!

So we sat down together (yep, the kiddos and I) and scribbled down:

1-what sounds good (marshmallows by the fire while watching the stars at night),

2-what we absolutely had to do (summer enrichment homework- ugh! 🙁 ),

3-what we should do instead, (making our own comic strips as inspired by Captain Underpants),

4- and what we can all agree on (making plans to do things together as a family).

We have all agreed that we are really good at this list-making-thing and also spending quality time together doing absolutely anything. 😛

That makes me happy and I am ever-so-grateful for it.

If you would like your very own free PDF copy of our “88 Ways To Celebrate Summer Break With Your Family,” you can download it to your device and print it out for your own use below.

 

 

 

                   88 Ways To Celebrate Summer Break With Your Kids:

A-Random Acts of Kindness:

1-bake & decorate cookies to give away as gifts to neighbors, seniors, friends, family, shelters, etc.
2-donate used toys, games, books, clothes to the homeless, hospitals, library, Goodwill, Church, etc.
3-volunteer at a women’s shelter, children’s hospital, clinic, or animal rescue center
4-host a dinner party or potluck
5-cook dinner for a random family, friends, or elderly neighbors
6-share your bounty with friends, family, or strangers
7-buy a meal for the person in line behind you
8-create a care package for the needy
9-Cook or prepare a meal for your parents
10-Offer to help wash the car, do hard work, fold laundry, sweep the floors, do dishes, or take out trash

 

B-Crafts:
11-make unicorn or glow in the dark slime
12-make friendship bracelets
13-recreate famous Art Masterpieces and display as artwork
14-make paper crafts like origami
15-make felt Crafts like stuffed animals
16-DIY your own fort out of cardboard boxes
17-make your own costume using materials around the house
18-reuse your Halloween costumes & play dress up

 

C-Games:
18-light show outside in the dark with glow in the dark bands, flash lights
19-water balloon fights
20-running through sprinklers & slip n slides
21-pillow fights
22-hopscotch in the driveway with chalk
23-chalk mazes in the driveway
24-chalk art in the driveway
25-laser tag
26-put put mini golf
27-bowling
28-amusement park
29-carnival and fairs
30-festivals and concerts
31-SkyZone trampoline park
32-Dave & buster’s
33-roller skating
34-water park
35-scavenger hunt
36-3 legged race
37-balance an egg
38-Simon says
39-bad Minton/ping pong
40-corn holes
41-soccer
42-volleyball
43-play cards or board games like Uno, Monopoly, Charades, Pictionary, or Clue

 

D-Education:
44-kids science experiments: volcano, tornado,
45-trip to the zoo
46-trip to the library
47-summer reading with Barnes & nobles
48-summer reading with half price books
49-trip to the museums (art, Childrens, history, botanical gardens)
50-trip to the planetarium
51-trip to the aquarium
52-take enrichment classes like coding
53-learn how to paint, draw, or sculpt with clay
54-learn how to play an instrument
55-take voice lessons for singing
56-take dance lessons
57-take a cooking class
58-take a self defense class
59-learn how to sew
60-plant a garden of flowers
61-grow your own produce
62-practice math skills
63-write to a pen pal in another country
64-crossword puzzles
65-sudoku
66-little things digital puzzles for rainy days
67-catch a caterpillar and watch its lifecycle
68-bird watching lifecycle
69-set up a lemonade stand to earn money

 

E-Family Bonding:
70-make a memory scrapbook journal of your summer experience
71-family game night (video games, cards, board games, or trivia)
72-family movie night
73-baseball game
74-go camping
75-go fishing
76-go to the beach
77-go to the pools/splash parks together
78-join a sports team
79-go water skiing, paddle boating, tubing
80-write thank you letters, just-becauses, birthday cards to family & friends
81-kids decide what to do day
82-assign a color uniform day
83-mismatch dress day
84-cook or prep a meal and/or dessert together as a family
85-camp in the backyard (s’mores, hot dogs, & hobo dinners)
86-plan a vacation/staycation together

87-go bike riding in the park together

88-pick a trail and go hiking

 

Disclosure:

The purpose of this blog is to provide insight and enjoyment only. I am not nor do I claim to be an expert or professional in any manner. All opinions are 100% my own. Please do not copy any content from my website without my prior permission or written consent from me. However, you may link directly to my post for reference and to give credit.

 

Disclaimer:

This website contains affiliate links and sponsorships. I do not endorse nor would I recommend any products that I have not used nor trust to my readers. Thank you so much for your continued support in helping our small blog grow- at no costs to you whatsoever.

 

Contact:

Please contact me directly via email:  admin@fulloffortunes.com, if you have any questions and/or comments. Thanks for stopping by!

 

 

 

How To Survive This Summer At Home With Your Kids

 

Ah, school is finally out and summer is in full swing at our household.

The weather is hot and the sun is shining.

There are pools to jump into and bikes waiting to be ridden by eager kids.

 

 

Are your kids driving you mad yet? Mine are! Lol

No one has time for schedules and appointments when there are way better things to do!

You know, like eating ice cream and watching movies all day long and even sometimes…

Dare we admit it?

All NIGHT LONG!

Mine were watching (who else) Captain Underpants on repeat for the 47th time!

 

Gretchen Rubin said, “the days are long, but the years are short. ”

 

 

And it’s true, because boy, have they flown by quickly.

Just like that, in the blink of an eye, they are out of diapers and are finally saying

their first words.

Blink again and they are running around the neighborhood with their friends and

can care less about coming home in time for dinner.

They will be grown before we know it.

So let’s all enjoy them and each other while we are all still young at heart.

 

So, now, after about a week or so of this, the boredom monsters start to creep their ugly heads

out and all you hear is:

“Mom! I’m bored! There’s nothing to do!”

 

Me: “What do you mean there’s nothing to do? There are a ton of things you can do. We even made a list of those things to do this summer, remember?

Kids: “Yeah, but we did those things already and now we’re bored.”

 

Does this sound familiar to you too?

If so, I have a solution for that down below, check it out.

 

 

 

 

 

After all, kids need structure and moms and dads still have to work and get things done around the house as well.

Unless we have clones to do it for us, that does not include entertaining our minions 24/7.

So what better way to help them figure out what to do than to decide together how to get them on a summer routine that will work for everyone.

 

Check out this freebie below.

 

I have created a Summer Schedule that is going to help you reign in your babies and bring order back to your household.

There are 2 versions of the Summer Schedule.

One has already been filled in with some of the routines that we have in our own household.

The other version is a blank one that you can fill in whatever works best for your household.

 

 

Some Tips To Help You Get Started:

-After printing out your Summer Schedules, you can slide it inside a page protector.

-You can also laminate it, and use it with a dry erase marker (to change things up per day)

-For instance, you can take it with you on vacation, and change up your routine easily with a swipe of your dry erase marker and keep everyone on task.

-This will give you a sense of order even when things change on a whim.

 

C’est La Vie (such is life)!

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How To Not Go Insane While Traveling With Your Family

Grab Your Free Travel Check Lists Below!

 

So you’re on your way to your destination. Bag in hand, kids in tow, and hubby is all ready to go.

 

This isn’t your first time traveling with your family. But somehow, someway, it always feels like it.

 

As always, you’re the last one to leave, so you rush out the door like a chicken with its head cut off.

 

But before, you do you make sure to lock all the doors. Grab any last minute items.

 

And of course, call out the door at your family for one last potty break before you finally decide to hit the road.

 

Because you know that inevitably someone’s going to have to go to the bathroom as soon as you pass the only rest area 3 miles down the road where there is no sign of civility anywhere in sight. (Smh)

 

No matter how much you think you’ve prepared ahead of time, it seems as though Murphy and his law is always out to get you. Rearing it’s ugly head at you, despite the fact that you’ve already done this same song and dance routine many times before while traveling with your family.

 

Short of leaving post-it notes everywhere or setting up reminders on your phone, you always seem to forget something…

 

“Arggh! Not again!” you tell yourself.

 

“What’s wrong with me?!”

 

News flash – mom brain continues well after pregnancy and giving birth! If anything, it gets worse! :/

 

At least this is the case for my family and I.

 

So on a recent road trip a couple weeks ago, a light bulb turned on and lifted the clouds from my foggy brain, as of late.

 

I sat down at the hotel desk and wrote down all of the things that we have forgotten from home, right onto the hotel notepad.

 

I also took the opportunity and made a game out of it by asking my very-bored-kids what they would have liked to take with them had they remembered to bring some of their belongings too.

 

And with their help, I wrote down everything that we could think of just to remind myself, not to forget about this for the next time we travel again in a couple weeks.

 

Thus giving rise to these handy dandy Travel Lists, one version for grown-ups and the other version, for kiddos.

 

You can download these Travel Check Lists below for free.

 

These lists will help you and your family to eliminate that,

 

“I can’t put my finger on what it is I am missing,” feeling the next time you are headed out the door with your hubby and kids in tow.

 

Just print one out for each family member, laminate it or put it inside of a sheet protector, and stick it right inside their duffle bag or suitcase so that you are all ready to go at a moment’s notice.

 

Because we all know that backing out of your driveway, driving down the street waving goodbye not once, not twice, but three times to the same neighbor will not win you any brownie points with anyone.

Especially your kids, who have learned to just roll with it and duck down further in their seats out of shame by the second time you’ve waved to the same said neighbor. (gulp)

No, we cannot turn back the hands of time, but we can all certainly benefit from my family’s constant mishaps of humanity and win at life with these free Travel Lists.

 

Enjoy! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Tricks You Must Do Right Now To Get Rid Of Your Debt Quickly!

Grab your free printable Weekly Expenses Tracker below!

 

So now that you have graduated college, landed a good stable-income-producing job, you are now considered a bona fide adult. (Right?)

Not only are you now considered legally allowed to vote, consume alcohol, and pay taxes all on your own. (Yay you!)

Even though cash is king, there are several instances in life where cash is not preferred such as buying a plane ticket. You may have already noticed that before landing your job, renting your apartment, or leasing your car that you were asked for consent to do a background check as well as a credit check.

But you are also a newly minted credit user as well. This means that you, if you have not already done so yet, you are now subject to credit checks by credit agencies like TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax, whether you like it or not.

So what exactly does this have to debt with getting rid of debt and more importantly, what does this mean for you, exactly? You may ask.

The short answer is, everything.

From the small purchases you make like your usual morning cup of latte to your one of your largest purchases like your first home, credit usage will depend largely on your ability to pay down and eventually pay off your debts, on time, every time.

Utilizing these 10 tips will quickly help you chip away at your debt and propel you forward in your life.

 

1-Freeze! (Stop Your Spending): Cancel all of those subscription services, cut up those credit cards, and let’s stop the trickle of spending from occurring to prevent a constant money leak from happening every month.

 

2-Assign Every Dollar & Every Cent: Track your money and really examine each dollar into and out of your wallet by first making a simple spending journal each week by writing down all your expenses for the week (to the penny) do this for about a month. Unlike that checking and savings account ledger that’s buried somewhere in one of your purses collecting dust, this will be an eye-opening exercise for you to really hold yourself accountable.

 

3-Needs -VS- Wants: Ask yourself these questions in your head each time you are faced with the decision on whether or not to spend money. It will soon become like second nature after a few times of practicing. “Is it really necessary for me to buy this now?”  “Will I die without it?” “Can this wait until I can actually pay for it in cash and not feel like I need to take a couple of doses of Pepto-Bismol to justify my purchase?”

 

4-If you must buy, then buy used: Contrary to popular belief, not everything you buy needs to be new. For instance, we buy used; books, electronics, appliances, vehicles, and even clothing (all except underwear because we believe in clean undies.) All of these are good contenders for this “rule.” We have recently bought our cars used and paid for them in cash and we couldn’t be any happier.  We even bought one of them online! You can check out it out here on: Carvana.com

 

5-De-clutter and sell your stuff to pay down debt: If you feel inclined to do so and if you’re brave enough, take this idea even further and go dumpster diving to flip goods for extra cash. If you have ever received any hand-me-downs from friends or family in great condition or new with tags, try your hand at re-selling them on some platforms like eBay, thredup.com, or swap.com for a profit. Our family does this on a quarterly basis as our kids continue to grow out of their clothes and shoes so quickly. It is a great way to save some much-needed space in their closets and, of course, recoup more money back into our pockets for a rainy day.

 

6-Downsize Your Residence: Is your high-end loft in the city costing you more than your arm and your leg? Then it’s time to trade down to start keeping your wallet from going empty and finally be able to hold onto your hard earned cash. If you are concerned about living in a certain area because of a school district, consider compromising by downsizing into an apartment to save up for a bigger place for the next school year. 

 

7-Meal Plan And Avoid The Drive-Thru: This doesn’t mean eating a consecutive meal of rice and beans for breakfast lunch and dinner for the entire month. But maybe you can consider buying your staples, such as rice, beans, and other dried goods, in bulk when they are on sale to get you through the winter months. Cooking a large meal once on a Sunday and then freezing the leftovers for a quick one-minute microwave warm-up will be a lifesaver on those busy swim meet nights. Revamp that rotisserie chicken that you got from the deli and turn it into two meals instead of one. You can serve rotisserie chicken one night and then make a chicken pot pie meal with the leftover chicken meat on a different night during the same week. We have done this on numerous occasions making shredded barbeque chicken sliders one night and then using the leftover meat for kicked up spicy chicken ramen bowl on a different night of the same week.

 

8-Kill Two Birds With One Stone: Put feelers around the office water cooler and offer to carpool to work with a few local coworkers and switch days or take turns driving. If that just won’t do, you can try biking to work and get in some much-needed exercise to boot. You will benefit not only in health (the exercise) but also in wealth (saving you gas money and wear & tear on your car)!

 

9-Swap Meals: Host a potluck dinner party with some close friends or neighbors. Ask each person to bring their own side dish and/or beverage to share. Take turns doing this each month or if you’re all really tight with one another, on a weekly basis and watch your wallet grow! Not only was this a popular choice for us during college, but it has proven to be a lifesaver for us during these child-rearing years as well. Everyone seems to benefit from eating something different and we all enjoy each other’s company just as well.

 

10-Switch your phone lines and share: Looking back on it now, I just cringe at the thought that we used to pay $118 per month on our cell phone bill for my husband and me when we had a plan with Verizon. 🙁 But since we switched to Ting.com we’ve only paid anywhere between $45-$60 per month, depending on data usage and roaming charges. Even so, we never had any complaints about our Ting service. That’s a huge difference in cash savings for us! We’re so glad that we finally made the switch and start keeping more of our hard-earned cash right in our pockets where it belongs.

So whether you are pulling out your credit card for that morning latte or saving up to plunk down a chunk of cash for a deposit on your first home, reducing and eliminating debt is vital to maintaining your financial health.

To help you further keep track of your hard earned cash, I have created this free printable Weekly Expenses Tracker so that you know exactly where to plug your money leaks. Start off slowly one week at a time and see where your money is actually going.

 

Once you’ve gotten the hang of this, you’ll feel more confident about how to handle your personal finances.

Who knows? Maybe you’ll even try your hand at creating a budget too!

Enjoy!

Cheap & Simple DIY Felt Succulent Wreath for $1.11

 

Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

As you may have seen and heard, succulents are all the rage nowadays.

Anywhere you look, there seems to be no shortage of succulents in all the stores.

 

Succulents are all the rage everywhere we turn nowadays, like this gorgeous wall decor from Pottery Barn. However, the price tag, is anything but… :/

 

Real ones, fake ones, paper ones, and felt ones, you name it? They have it.

Even I had to succumb to the siren calls of those fascinating plant life material.

There’s just something about it, an aura maybe?

That exudes classy, elegance, and timelessness, much like it’s counterpart, the orchid.

(I love orchids!) I just can’t seem to have enough. I also love to give them away as gifts for any and all occasions!

Anyway, I feel the same way about succulents too. There can never be one too many succulents whether you decide to keep them as natural air purifiers aka home decor or you decide to give them away as gifts.

They will be well-received by most folks.

Well, nothing seems to scream, “Spring is here!” like fresh succulents.

Imagine my surprise when I found a couple of these lovely strands of succulents on clearance at Target for (Warning: brace yourself now-wait for it)

10 Cents! Can you believe it?

 

Now some of you may be thinking, “Sweet! Can’t mess that up too badly for that price!”

And you’re absolutely right!

So, I paired the felt succulent strand up with a simple twig wreath from the Dollar Tree and created a beautifully simple yet elegant Spring wreath.

Looks so fresh, this wreath will make any leprechaun green with envy.

All you need are 2 things:

-a willow wreath from the Dollar Tree for $1.00 (before tax)

-and a string of felt succulents banner on a tweed rope that I was able to find on clearance at Target for just $0.11,  after Valentine’s Day (before tax)

 

 

No need for any messy glue guns or tape.

Just tuck the ends of the tweed string into the willow wreath.

That’s it! Easy, affordable, and stylish!

Just in time to redecorate your home and finally usher in Spring!

 

 

Disclosure:

The purpose of this blog is to provide insight and enjoyment only. I am not nor do I claim to be an expert or professional in any manner. All opinions are 100% my own. Please do not copy any content from my website without my prior permission or written consent from me. However, you may link directly to my post for reference and to give credit.

 

Disclaimer:

This website contains affiliate links and sponsorships. I do not endorse nor would I recommend any products that I have not used nor trust to my readers. Thank you so much for your continued support in helping our small blog grow- at no costs to you whatsoever.

 

Contact:

Please contact me directly via email:  admin@fulloffortunes.com, if you have any questions and/or comments. Thanks for stopping by! ?

10 Mistakes To Avoid When Staining A Staircase

Are you planning your next home improvement project soon? Get instant access below to my free printable DIY Project Planner to help you figure out the costs, materials, and labor before you tackle your next project. Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

If you’ve read my post about my kitchen cabinet makeover and/or my whole house trim makeover, you will be able to see without a reasonable doubt that I have a very strong aversion to honey oak wood.

I just hate Honeywood oh so much! (Yuck!)

I am “allergic” to honey oak wood. It is the bane of all types of wood out there. It conjures up a feeling of being trapped inside a giant peach or a honeycomb, for me. I am constantly bothered by the mere sight of it.

Every time I walk into my kitchen, I can’t help but lose my appetite. It’s not like I can cover my eyes and avoid my kitchen cabinets. They’re always there staring right back at me, mocking me with their angry orangey hue.

Not to mention that staircase, what a lovely sight for sore eyes. If only it were any other color other than orange honey wood oak, of course. Oh, honey wood, how I loathe thee so…

Now, if you’re a fan of it, great! To each, her own! 😉

But as for my family and I, we choose to burn the honey wood DOWN to the ground!

Or, rather, the more sensible approach, stain and/or paint over it with a more current, modern, and trendier style preferably found in this decade. Anything, but honey wood oak is fine with me.

Like a cat, ready to pounce on the next sneaky mouse that scurries by, I was bound and determined to get rid of that honey wood oak once and for all. Even if that meant, I would have to do it myself!

So I hopped on Pinterest and scoured through tutorials like a mad woman. Then I went to all the places that the contractors would often frequent:

Lowes, check

Home Depot, check

Menards, check

Sherwin Williams, check

Amazon, check

ReStore, of course, check.

I decided to settle on Amazon because as you know, I’m frugal. I used a gift card that I had previously earned from Swagbucks and I ordered a can of Java Gel Stain and a can of Clear Poly from Amazon.  Two days later when it finally arrived, I got right to work and prepped the entire surface of the staircase and banister.

Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

Here’s what I did:

1-I started by wiping down the surface with a warm soapy water mixture and rinsed it off with clean water.

2- Then I let it dry overnight and left the windows open to speed up the process.

3-I lightly sanded the clean surfaces down with fine sandpaper.

4-I taped up all surrounding carpet with blue painter’s tape and covered the new burbur carpet with plastic sheeting and a drop cloth.

5-I stained the stair rails first, with a couple coats of the Java stain.

6-Then I primed and painted the spindles last with the white color HGTV Brand Paint and Primer in one. The spindles took about 7 coats total in between all the sanding and painting.

Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

Warning: This was a lot easier to do on the rails than the spindles. The spindles took FOREVER and I mean FOREVER. By the time I was done sanding them individually, my hands and fingers were so sore I could not bend them for days! But I have to say, though, that it was worth the effort.

Now, I could not have done this myself without my husband’s help and support as well as the advice and know-how from these Pinterest ladies. Check out my Pinterest board to see and read about all of their eye candy results. If you are looking to redo your staircase, check out these similar tutorials below for more ideas to help you finish your project and do it right.

http://www.practicallyspoiled.com/2014/10/23/how-to-gel-stain-oak-banisters/

http://www.yourhomeonlybetter.com/painting-stairs-diy-faqs-and-tips/

http://timelessandtreasured.blogspot.com/2016/01/diy-how-to-stain-and-paint-oak-stair.html?m=1

Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

Here is a list of Materials that I have used on this staircase project:

-General Finishes Java Gel Stain

-General Finishes Clear Poly

-small Angled sable brush

-large straight edged sable brush

-plastic Saran wrap (to temporarily wrap the wet paint brushes during break times)

-aluminum foil (to wrap the paint tray for easy clean up)

-paint tray

-paint thinner

-paper towel roll

-sandpaper (fine, medium, and course)

-sanding block

-protective gloves

-frog tape

-heavy duty plastic sheeting or drop cloth

-mask

-protective eyewear

-various sized foam brushes

-rags (old socks with holes in them are great for these staining types of projects)

-a bucket of water (for cleaning up the socks or rags in between coats or touch-ups)

 

Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

Here are the 10 mistakes that I have learned to avoid for the next time I decide to take on a project of this caliber again:

  1. Not Prepping The Area: Clean all the parts of the staircase that is going to get painted or stained with soap and water, TCH powder (drying agent that is found in the paint aisle) So, a few months after finishing my staircase remodel, I got this nice juicy tidbit from a very knowledgeable guy at my local Lowe’s store to wash down the wood with TCH powder. Too bad, it was too little too late, but I appreciate the advice anyway. I will definitely be doing that to my future remodeling projects from now on. Thanks, Dude! 😉

2. Not covering or blocking off the surfaces and nearby areas with tape and plastic sheeting. This is SO SO SO important! Plastic sheeting is so cheap and furnishings are not, enough said. 😉

3.Not reading or failing to understand the instructions of others. Ok, so this is like driving in the car with your husband and refusing to ask for directions. You both know you’re lost but you say nothing because he knows exactly what he’s doing, right? Unfortunately, no. There are just no detours when you are working with wood stain. If you’re going to spend the time to do it, save yourself more time and frustration by doing it right the first time. (i.e.see white spindles above):/

4. Not asking for help when you are clearly in over your head and have no idea what you are doing. (See #3 above) Clearly, I was way in over my head. Correction, anytime I get an idea like this, I need to be reminded that I am way- in- over- my head.

5. Not staying focused on the “SQUIRREL!”… the task at hand. Yes, I get so easily distracted by all-the-things…

6. Not finishing the work you started due to frustrations that it’s taking longer than you’ve originally anticipated. Fantasy: I had originally anticipated that this project would only take me 1 week to do, from start to finish. Reality: The end result took a good 10 weeks. Yes, we lived in total chaos for about 3 months and we can’t even blame the kids for it. How is that for a dose of humility? 😉

7. Not ventilating the area very well. For the bulk of this project, especially the sanding, priming, and clear finishing parts, we sent the kids to their grandparents’ house. We also kept all the windows and doors open to let out all the paint fumes. However, traces of the paint smell can still be detected whenever we’ve left the house for any period of time and came back inside the house.

  1. Not waiting for it to dry in between coats and rushing to just get it done. Whoever said, “patience is a virtue,” cannot be more right. Ten weeks felt like FOREVER! But, let me reiterate, it was worth it because of the money we saved by doing this project on our own.

9. Not Sanding in between coats. This is so important, see #3. Seven coats of paint and primer will mean absolutely diddly squat if not for sanding.

  1. Not taking care of yourself because you think the project is more important than your basic needs, i.e. skipping a few meals or nights of sleep just to get it done. Paint fumes, dehydration, lack of sleep, and starvation will lead to some very interesting hallucinations.

 

To help you with planning your next home improvement project, I have created a free printable DIY Project Check List. It is a handy dandy little sheet to help you figure out the costs, materials, and labor before you tackle your next project.

Get instant access to my free printable DIY Project Check List below:

 

 

 

 

Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

 

Photo Credit: taken from my iPhone

 

Remember, above all else, your health is paramount. Nothing is worth more to you, your family, or your friends if you are not around to share the gift that is you. Take care of yourself and each other.

 

Disclosure:

The purpose of this blog is to provide insight and enjoyment only. I am not nor do I claim to be an expert or professional in any manner. All opinions are 100% my own. Please do not copy any content from my website without my prior permission or written consent from me. However, you may link directly to my post for reference and to give credit.

Disclaimer:

This website contains affiliate links and sponsorships. I do not endorse nor would I recommend any products that I have not used nor trust to my readers. Thank you so much for your continued support in helping our small blog grow- at no costs to you whatsoever.

Contact:

Please contact me directly via email:  admin@fulloffortunes.com, if you have any questions and/or comments. Thanks for stopping by! ?

Fast, Easy, & Yummy Zupa Toscana Replica

Fast, Easy, & Yummy Zupa Toscana Replica

 

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. When you click on any of these links, I make a small commission at no cost to you whatsoever. Thank you so much for supporting my blog. 🙂

 

Make your very own Zupa Toscana Replica right at home!

When it’s pouring cats and dogs outside and you feel like there’s nothing that can warm the chill inside your bones and all you can think about is a warm bowl of that heavenly goodness of Italian sausage, creamy potatoes, and crisp kale from Olive Garden.

You know the one I’m talking about it.

The only reason you have that’s worth you getting up out of your chair for.

That’s right!

The only other special that matters besides the Never Ending Pasta special.

It’s during their seasonal soup and salad specials, of course! 😉

Yep! It’s that famous Zupa Toscana!

I just love that stuff, and apparently, and so does the rest of my family, especially, my son, who’s a super huge foodie!

 

This year, we are trying to get into the mindset of eating to live.

 

One too many trips to Olive Garden has spurred me to recreate this wannabe bowl at home. Not only does it save us money from eating out so much, but it also helps curb our appetites and waistline.

Truth be told, since I have decided to make it a family goal to be a little bit more intentional about our diet as well as our food budget this year. It has become quite a challenge for us on a weekly basis to follow through on that though.

 

However, what happens more often than not is that we tend to live to eat! 🙂

 

We love our food, and we do not want to sacrifice on the flavor nor the freshness of the ingredients that we use to prepare our meals. This Zupa recipe is a very close contender if not, a good replica of the real thing from our favorite Italian Food Chain Restaurant.

 

Cost Breakdown of the Fast, Easy, & Yummy Zupa Toscana Replica Meal:

Since I am all about living frugally, here is the true cost breakdown for this meal. I am using this helpful guide to assume prices at Kroger & it’s website, only because I like their search feature the best.

This meal serves a family of 4 and plenty for seconds and leftovers for meals during the week. You can also freeze the leftovers and eat them later. Just pop it in the microwave between 30 seconds – 1 minute per serving.

-1 Tube (1 lb) Ground Turkey 85/15————————-$2.49

-2 Tblsp. Olive Oil———————————————-on hand

-1 tsp. Salt——————————————————-on hand

-1 tsp. Ground Black Pepper———————————on hand

-1 tsp. minced garlic——————————————–$1.99

-1/2 tsp. Granulated White Sugar—————————on hand

-1/2 tsp. garlic salt———————————————-on hand

-1/2 tsp. onion powder—————————————–on hand

-2 Tblsp. Soy Sauce———————————————-on hand

-1 qt. Heavy Cream———————————————-$3.69

-1 package of frozen raw kale———————————$0.89 (I buy these fresh, wash, & freeze them for this recipe)

-1 chopped white onion—————————————–$0.67

-4 russet potatoes———————————————–$3.99

-1.5-2 qts. water (or ½ of a pot)

 

*Optional:

-Can also substitute ground turkey for Veggie Crumbles as a Vegetarian option

-2 strips of leftover cooked bacon from this morning’s breakfast

-Grated Parmesan as a garnish or to taste——————————-$2.49

-Bacon Bits/Imitation Bacon Bits as a garnish or to taste————–$1.49

Total Cost of this Family-Sized Meal: $17.70, which is $4.26 per person to feed a family of 4 plus leftovers!

 

Give it a try and see for yourself! Want more quick and frugal meal ideas, try this one here.

Let me know how it turns out for you, in the comments below.

 

Fast, Easy, & Yummy Zupa Toscana Replica

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Category: Soup

Cuisine: Italian

Serving Size: 8

Fast, Easy, & Yummy Zupa Toscana Replica

Ingredients

  • -1 Tube (1 lb) Ground Turkey 85/15
  • -2 Tblsp. Olive Oil
  • -1 tsp. Salt
  • -1 tsp. Ground Black Pepper
  • -1 tsp. minced garlic
  • -1/2 tsp. Granulated White Sugar
  • -1/2 tsp. garlic salt
  • -1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • -2 Tblsp. Soy Sauce
  • -1 qt. Heavy Cream
  • -1 package of frozen raw kale
  • -1 chopped white onion
  • -4 russet potatoes
  • -1.5-2 qts. water (or ½ of a pot)
  • *Optional:
  • -Can also substitute ground turkey for Veggie Crumbles as a Vegetarian option
  • -2 strips of leftover cooked bacon from this morning's breakfast
  • -Grated Parmesan as a garnish or to taste
  • -Bacon Bits/Imitation Bacon Bits as a garnish or to taste

Instructions

  1. 1- On your stovetop, drizzle in the oil. Then add your garlic and saute for about 1 minute. Next, add your onions and saute another minute or until translucent.
  2. 2- Add your "ground meat"  and the rest of the dry spices to your soup pot and cook and brown it evenly.  No need to dirty another pan, just drain the oil after the meat is cooked. This can be ground beef, turkey, ground Italian sausage, or even veggie crumbles. The choice is yours on how "healthy," you're choosing to consume your zupa tonight.
  3. 3- Add soy sauce to your meat mixture. This is my not-so-secret ingredient obviously because I always have it on hand and also because I can never justify buying Worcester sauce only to use it once in a blue moon. Sautee for another 2 minutes.
  4. 4-Add your potato wedges over top of your meat mixture and saute well for another couple minutes.
  5. 5-Add cold water to cover and submerge your potatoes in the soup pot. Cook on high until water is boiling, about 2 minutes depending on your stove.
  6. 6-Then simmer on low medium for at least 15 minutes, until potatoes are flaky and fully cooked.
  7. 7-Add the kale and the heavy cream right before serving.
  8. 8-Serve with your favorite garlic bread or freshly baked baguette.

Notes

This recipe can also be made in the slow cooker, if you are pressed for time. Just have all of your ingredients ready the night before and toss everything inside your slow cooker before you head off to work. You will have a gourmet meal waiting for you when you come back home in a few hours. No need to order take out.

Set the setting on your slow cooker to cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours.

Remember to ONLY add the kale and the heavy cream last, right before you serve.

Enjoy!

https://fulloffortunes.com/fast-easy-yummy-zupa-toscana-replica/

Directions: 

1- On your stovetop, drizzle in the oil. Then add your garlic and saute for about 1 minute. Next, add your onions and saute another minute or until translucent.

2- Add your “ground meat”  and the rest of the dry spices to your soup pot and cook and brown it evenly.  No need to dirty another pan, just drain the oil after the meat is cooked. This can be ground beef, turkey, ground Italian sausage, or even veggie crumbles. The choice is yours on how “healthy,” you’re choosing to consume your zupa tonight.

3- Add soy sauce to your meat mixture. This is my not-so-secret ingredient obviously because I always have it on hand and also because I can never justify buying Worcester sauce only to use it once in a blue moon. Sautee for another 2 minutes.

4-Add your potato wedges over top of your meat mixture and saute well for another couple minutes.

5-Add cold water to cover and submerge your potatoes in the soup pot. Cook on high until water is boiling, about 2 minutes depending on your stove.

6-Then simmer on low medium for at least 15 minutes, until potatoes are flaky and fully cooked.

7-Add the kale and the heavy cream right before serving.

8-Serve with your favorite garlic bread or freshly baked baguette. Enjoy!

 

*Note:

This recipe can also be made in the slow cooker if you are pressed for time. Just have all of your ingredients ready the night before and toss everything inside your slow cooker before you head off to work.

You will have a gourmet meal waiting for you when you come back home in a few hours. No need to order takeout.

Set the setting on your slow cooker to cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours.

Remember to ONLY add the kale and the heavy cream last, right before you serve.

Enjoy!

 

Disclosure:

The purpose of this blog is to provide insight and enjoyment only. I am not nor do I claim to be an expert or professional in any manner. All opinions are 100% my own. Please do not copy any content from my website without my prior permission or written consent from me. However, you may link directly to my post for reference and to give credit.

Disclaimer:

This website contains affiliate links and sponsorships. I do not endorse nor would I recommend any products that I have not used nor trust to my readers. Thank you so much for your continued support in helping our small blog grow- at no costs to you whatsoever.

Contact:

Please contact me directly via email:  admin@fulloffortunes.com, if you have any questions and/or comments. Thanks for stopping by!

Super Simple Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

Super Simple Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

 

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. When you click on any of these links, I make a small commission at no cost to you whatsoever. Thank you so much for supporting my blog. 🙂

 

Craving Mexican food for dinner tonight but don’t want to put a dent in your wallet?  

How about whipping up a bowl of Chicken Tortilla Soup from home instead?

 

Lately, I’ve been feeling like soup season is upon us as the weather has been changing from warm to cold.

Nothing seems to warm me up like a nice steamy hot bowl of soup.

It just warms my soul. 🙂

I often tease my husband that he should have married a Latina because he is the only member of our family who can eat Mexican food every single day of the week. And never seem to get sick of it!

And he would jokingly ponder the possibility of it too. Hmm, what if? 😉

Me, on the other hand, I am the exact opposite. Being a creative mind, I just cannot do the same thing every day. I crave variety, it’s the spice of life!

Perhaps in another lifetime. But for now, we will have to just wonder and enjoy the next best thing…

And that is the wonderful flavors of this super simple to prepare slow cooker chicken tortilla soup.

I’m not sure if it’s the weather or time of year, but something weird has happened in our household lately. Our family has suddenly followed Dad’s culinary cue and picked up a taste for Mexican food.

We’ve been craving a big bowl of chicken tortilla soup like it’s going out of style!

 

Make Taco Tuesdays, At Home:

So, naturally, we have progressed to “Taco Tuesdays” on our Weekly Meal Plan instead of hopping into the car to hit up our local Mexican restaurants. This can include tacos, quesadillas, nachos, or even chicken tortilla soup, whichever ingredients we have on hand.

Even my daughter, who’s the pickiest eater in our household, can agree. A nice, hot, steamy bowl of spicy chicken tortilla soup on a cold and rainy day fits the bill ANY day of the week, not just Tuesdays.

Here is a quick homemade version of a quick and yummy spicy slow cooker chicken tortilla soup. You can cook in a big pot on the stove or just throw everything into the slow cooker and let it do all the work for you.

Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken breasts, cubed
  • 2 Tblsp. Olive Oil
  • 2 cups of cooled cooked rice (white or brown)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 chopped white onion
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can sweet corn
  • 4 chopped Roma tomatoes
  • 1 chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 jar of Black Bean and Corn Salsa
  • 1 qt. chicken broth
  • 1 qt. water

 

Directions:

1- On medium-high heat, drizzle oil in your slow cooker pan.

2- Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant for about 1 minute.

3- Add the chopped onions and cook until slightly translucent, or about 1 minute.

4- Add the cubed chicken breasts and the dry seasoning and cook evenly for about 4 minutes or until slightly seared and brown around the edges.

5- Add the rest of the veggies and sauté for about 2 minutes.

6-Add the cooked rice, the chicken broth, and the water and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.

7-Serve it up with your favorite toppings and a side of tortilla chips.

 

Our family’s favorite is Blue Corn tortilla chips, what’s yours? Enjoy!

 

*(Optional) Serve with the following:

-Sprinkle 1 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese or Taco Blended Sharp Cheddar Cheese
-Garnish with chopped scallions/green onions & cilantro
-Add 1-2 dashes of Cholula or your favorite brand of hot sauce
-Add 1 dollop of sour cream

 

Cost Breakdown of the Super Simple Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup Meal:

Since I am all about living frugally, here is the true cost breakdown for this meal.

I am using this helpful guide to assume prices at Kroger & it’s website, only because I like their search feature the best.

This meal serves a family of 4 and plenty for seconds and leftovers for meals during the week. You can also freeze the leftovers and eat them later.

Just pop it in the microwave between 30 seconds – 1 minute per serving.

2 chicken breasts, cubed———————————————-$7.58
2 Tblsp. Olive Oil——————————————————-on hand
2 cups of cooled cooked rice (white or brown)——————–on hand
1 tsp. salt—————————————————————–on hand
1 tsp. ground black pepper——————————————–on hand
1 tsp. minced garlic—————————————————–$1.99
1 chopped white onion————————————————-$0.45
1 can black beans——————————————————–$0.59
1 can sweet corn——————————————————–$0.59
4 chopped Roma tomatoes——————————————–$1.12
1 chopped green bell pepper——————————————$0.79
1 jar of Black Bean and Corn Salsa———————————–$2.49
1 qt. chicken broth——————————————————$1.29                                                    1 qt. water

Served with your favorite Tortilla Chips—————————-$1.00

Total Cost of this Family-Sized Meal: $17.89, which is $4.47 per person to feed a family of 4 plus leftovers!

Give this a try and let me know how yours turned out. 🙂

 

Super Simple Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 4 hours

Total Time: 4 hours, 10 minutes

Super Simple Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

Ingredients

  • 2 chicken breasts, cubed
  • 2 Tblsp. Olive Oil
  • 2 cups of cooled cooked rice (white or brown)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 chopped white onion
  • 1 can black beans
  • 1 can sweet corn
  • 4 chopped Roma tomatoes
  • 1 chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 jar of Black Bean and Corn Salsa
  • 1 qt. chicken broth
  • 1 qt. water

Instructions

  1. Directions:
  2. 1- On medium high heat, drizzle oil in your slow cooker pan.
  3. 2- Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant for about 1 minute.
  4. 3- Add the chopped onions and cook until slightly translucent, or about 1 minute.
  5. 4- Add the cubed chicken breasts and the dry seasoning and cook evenly for about 4 minutes or until slightly seared and brown around the edges.
  6. 5- Add the rest of the veggies and sauté for about 2 minutes.
  7. 6-Add the cooked rice, the chicken broth, and the water and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
  8. 7-Serve it up with your favorite toppings and a side of tortilla chips.

Notes

*(Optional) Serve with the following:

-Sprinkle 1 oz. shredded sharp cheddar cheese or Taco Blended Sharp Cheddar Cheese

-Garnish with chopped scallions/green onions & cilantro

-Add 1-2 dashes of Cholula or your favorite brand of hot sauce

-Add 1 dollop of sour cream   Enjoy! 🙂

https://fulloffortunes.com/super-simple-slow-cooker-chicken-tortilla-soup/

 

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