Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Dropped my Thermostat a Couple of Degrees

A few days ago, I was going to be away from home for over 12 hours, so I decided to drop my thermostat a couple of degrees.  I was tired when I arrived home, and my thermostat was the last thing on my mind, so I didn't move it back upon arriving home.

The next morning, I realized it, but didn't feel chilled at all. Since I was leaving early in the morning, I decided to leave the thermostat.  After that, I didn't think about it for a couple of days. By that time, I realized I could keep my thermostat down at the lower level of 67 degrees in my home while I was home, without feeling at all uncomfortable.

So today when I left, knowing that I would be gone for at least 10 if not 12 hours, I decided to drop my thermostat a couple of degrees....

Sunday, November 18, 2012


The simple title of this article, 'Pasta', says it all.

Pasta is a great ingredient for budget meals.  Here are a few of the past a recipes that I use to keep my budget in tact, when it comes to grocery shopping.

Pasta Salad


1/2 box rotini pasta
1 cup sliced, diced or cherry tomatoes
1 cup green, red, or yellow peppers (mix it up or use one color, whatever fits your budget)
1 small can black olives (I prefer whole, but choose your favorite style)
8 ounces mozzerella
8 ounces Italian dressing


Cook pasta and drain, as per directions on the box.  Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. 

Baked Spaghetti

I use a couple of variations of baked spaghetti, to keep it interesting.  One includes sausage, the other pepperoni. 


1/2 box angel hair pasta
1/2 can Hunts pasta sauce (I recommend Hunts because of the value and taste in comparison to others.)
1/4 lb bulk Italian bulk sausage or 1/4 pack pepperoni
8 ounces of mozzerella

Preheat oven to 425 degrees, while you are cooking the pasta. If you chose the sausage for your baked spaghetti recipe, fry the sausage stirring into small pieces, at the same time you are cooking the pasta.

Strain the angel hair pasta.  Add the pasta sauce and the sausage.  Stir ingredients and then pour into a small Pyrex baking dish.  Top with mozzerella.  Bake 10 to 15 minutes, until cheese darkens to your liking.

If you chose the pepperoni option, skip the sausage in the above recipe.  After you have topped the angel hair pasta and sauce with mozzerella, add a layer of pepperoni to the top of the cheese and follow the baking instructions above.

Penne Rigate and Sausage


1/2 box penne rigate
1/2 can Hunts pasta sauce
1/4 lb bulk Italian bulk sausage, or your favorite sausage (sliced kielbasa works well in this recipe as well)

Cook the penne rigate as per the directions on the box.  At the same time fry the sausage.  Strain the pasta , add the sausage and sauce.  Top with parmesan or your favorite cheese.

Enjoy these budget recipes, or mix it up a little to fit your taste!