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Using Online Time Wisely: How to streamline your online activities


 We all live busy lives, and spending time online probably isn't at the top of our priority list. However, if we're not careful, it's easy to spend more time browsing the internet than doing things that are high on our priority list.

Here are some of the ways I streamline my online time to get the most accomplished and have more time for my family and other duties!

October 1, 2006 -- Easy Chuck Roast with Gravy

Easy Chuck Roast with Gravy recipe   This week's "Recipe of the Week" is one I'm especially excited about sharing! My mom has made this Easy Chuck Roast and Gravy recipe for years, and it's always enjoyed. It has a wonderful flavor, too delicious to describe very well. You can vary the amount of seasonings you use (it only calls for 4 different seasonings) depending on how strong you like your roast.

This recipe is probably one of the easiest recipes I have! It takes me about 5 minutes to sprinkle seasonings on both sides of the roast and add a little water and soy sauce to the pan. Bring it to a boil, and simmer for about 4 hours (or longer!). And that's it! It's so tasty, too!

The juices leftover in the pan make a fantastic gravy for on your roast, and all you have to do is thicken it as desired. This roast goes great with plain mashed potatoes (and gravy, of course!), rice, egg noodles, etc.

This Easy Chuck Roast is a family favorite, and we hope you like it, too!

New poll, new recipes, new haircut... oh wait, no new haircut! lol ;)

I posted a new poll that had been on my mind: What is your preferred drinking water? I always find poll results to be so fascinating! If you've missed any of our previous polls (we've had quite a few by now!) they can all be found here.

I also just added a new recipe for Frijoles De Olla ("Beans in a Pot"). These are kind of like refried beans, but not all mashed. They are sooooo good! I like to put sour cream and feta cheese on mine. Yum! I've really been enjoying experimenting with dried beans, especially because they are so cheap! I also wasn't raised on beans, so it's new and exciting to me!

A few days ago, I made some homemade baked beans. I didn't follow the recipe though... first, I cooked some navy beans and some pinto beans. Then I used those in the recipe instead of the canned kidney and butter beans. Butter beans are at least $0.49 per can, and kidney beans are at least $0.33 (I think, anyway), so using canned beans can really add up... when you want to make a huge batch and use lots of beans. ;)

Anyway, the baked beans were really really good with the navy and pinto beans! Yum! They're almost all gone... Joshua took the last of them in his lunch today.

Well, I'm thinking about heading to bed. Next week (hopefully!) I plan to start posting a menu each Monday. Does that interest anyone, or are menus just boring? I think my menu page needs something more to it... and posting weekly just might work!

Luscombe's visit

 A couple weeks ago we were blessed with a visit from Tanya Luscombe and her family. Tanya has been featured as a guest chef here, and we've known each other for about a year. We had a great time together! Read more for photos and details about their visit!  Tammy (with Eliyahu) and Tanya (with Benjamin)

Frugal Fridays: Mop re-fills

   Today's frugal fridays tip is for those of you who (like me) use one of those super-convenient Chlorox or Swiffer brand mops on your floors. The companies who make these wonderful mops count on a person purchasing special pads and bottles of cleaning solution...

...and paying approximately 50 cents (or more!) every time they mop their floor! Not me! Read how!

Blueberries + Cheesecake = Yum!

Blueberry Cheesecake Bars recipe  Here's a dessert that Joshua made this summer: Blueberry Cheesecake Bars! Joshua loves cheesecake; in fact, it's been months since I've made a cheesecake, because Joshua loves making them. He's our "cheesecake expert", and he sure knows how to make some great cheesecakes! Joshua has done a lot of research about different kinds and methods of cheesecake and really knows what he's doing. :)

Grocery Savings How-To! (From Crystal)

My friend Crystal is posting in her blog about how she manages to save 50% to 75% on her groceries by using cupons, sales, and rebates! I'm so impressed! She already has Secrets to supermarket savings -- Parts One and Two posted on her blog!

I usually get things on sale, and I occasionally get some free-with-rebate items (yay!), but saving big-time with coupons isn't something I've done very often. I'm so glad Crystal is sharing her experience in this with people like me!! :D

New poll: Do you taste-test your cooking?

After writing my recent Cooking Tips article, wherein I talked about sampling foods before serving them, I had the idea for the latest poll question: Do you sample foods when you're cooking? You get 5 choices, and no one can see what you voted, so you can be completely honest ;).

Welcome to guest chef Amy Faber!

Easy Three-Cheese Enchiladas recipe

I am excited to introduce today's guest chef, Amy Faber! Amy is the youngest sibling in my family, and she already knows how to cook some delicious foods! Here are three of her classic picks: Easy Three-Cheese Enchiladas, Homestyle Chocolate Chip Cookies, and Homemade Puppy Chow! When Amy's cooking, there's a good chance that one of these recipes is in use! ;) Read all about Amy and her recipes!

Guest Chef volunteer form: fixed!

I just discovered that there had been a problem with the form for volunteering to be a guest chef! I must have been the one who set it up and forgot to put in some pertinent information to allow it to work!

I solved the problem (thanks to Jessica, who alerted me to it!), and now I'm left wondering... who else volunteered to be a featured guest chef and thought I was just ignoring them?! If you want to be a featured guest chef, please let me know! :D