I arrived at my 60th birthday in October and became eligible to start receiving my widow's benefits from Social Security. It isn't much but will allow me to cut down on my work load and spend a little more time writing and doing other things that I enjoy. If you are a widow and have not remarried, be sure to get down to your local Social security office and file for survivor's benefits. When you reach your own full retirement age, you can switch to your own benefits then. Every little bit helps.
With the new health care law now in full swing it is important to know what our options are. I think in the long run Obama Care will be a good thing for the country but right now it is a mired mess and most of us don't have a clue how to deal with it. For some people shopping for insurance at the Marketplace (healthcare.gov) has been a godsend and they were able to find affordable insurance maybe for the first time in years. For me, it has been a disappointment.
Because I work (full time) for a company that offers health insurance, I am not eligible for decent deals at the Marketplace. If I was making the same amount of money I do now at a company that did not offer employee health insurance I would be able to save about $175 a month and have much better coverage. People who are working part time are getting incredibly good quotes and options.
I'm not sure what to do about this and am considering looking for another job. It would have to be soon though. The Marketplace is closed after March 31.
Turkey smoked sausage is not only affordable but versatile in its uses. Add the sliced sausage to beans in the crock pot for instant flavor. Slice it diagonally and fry in a blending of margarine and grape jelly for a quick kid-pleaser. Buy some pre-packaged jambalaya or dirty rice mix. Cook it up and add sliced sausage for a hardy meal with a New Orleans style. Scramble with eggs or make a turkey smoked sausage stew by adding potatoes, celery, carrots and a can of white beans. It's a quick and inexpensive way to treat yourself and your family.
EASY TUNA PATTIES -
1 Large can or 2 Small cans of Tuna in water
Finely chopped celery or celery leaves
Finely chopped onion
1 or 2 drops of Worcestershire sauce
Salt and Pepper to taste.
Seasoned bread crumbs
Drain tuna. Mix all ingredients together - add bread crumbs until tuna mixture can be easily made into patties. Melt butter or spray a non-stick pan and cook until one side is golden brown. Flip over and brown the other side. Serve with a salad or your favorite vegetable
No doubt it's getting out of hand. Grocery shopping has shrunk the budget and made us all re-think what we like to eat. That being said, by being creative in the kitchen we can put together excellent tasting and nutritious meals without breaking the bank. All it takes is planning, experimenting (which is how we learn to cook) and using our heads. I hope to share some of the culinary tricks I've learned while trying to stay within my food budget. Stay tuned for delicious easy to prepare meals for the frugal cook.
Make your crock pot your best friend. Not only can you cook up some delicious beans and soups but even the toughest of meats can be tamed. Breakfast steaks or sirloin tip roasts which are usually tough can be cut up into bite sized pieces. Season and add to the crock pot with onions, carrots, potatoes, mushrooms and whatever else you like. Canned or frozen vegetables are okay too. Add a can of cream of mushroom soup for a creamy dish or canned tomatoes or onion soup mix or broth for a lighter texture. Make sure there's enough liquid to cover all and cook on low overnight or for 10-12 hours. Serve with cornbread or biscuits. Good stuff.
I like to cook so the challenge of preparing great meals at low cost has been fun. http://suziecat7.hubpages.com/hub/Good-Eats-for-Cheap