Homemade Granola Bars: Build A Menu

Homemade Granola Bars

 

This week’s Cooking With Kids recipe is almost too simple, yet the results are fantastic. It’s also a recipe that is very easy to sub Gluten Free/Allergy Friendly ingredients if needed. They last up to a week in an airtight container, making it super easy to make on the weekend and have ready for snacks all week long! Ready to get started? Check the recipe below for your list of ingredients and then follow these simple steps to make your own homemade granola bars.

Homemade granola bars

Ingredients: 

Healthy Granola Bars from Scratch

Directions: 

  • First, dump ALL the ingredients together in a mixer.
  • Add in any of your favorite ingredients like chocolate chips, nuts, etc.
  • Mix well.
  • Spread the granola mix out on your baking sheet, making sure to keep it about the same thickness all the way across.
  • Once it’s done, cut it while it’s still warm because once it cools it’s crunchy and harder to cut. Use a pizza cutter and cut into “bars.”  
  • Let the bars cool on the pan. Separate once they’re cool enough to touch and have hardened.
  • Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Print a copy of this recipe from Build A Menu HERE

Build A Menu  is an online menu planning service that makes meal planning and grocery shopping fast, easy and budget friendly. Not familiar with them? Take a minute to browse the site and see how they can save you time and money, too!

Molly Members get free access to their Dine on a Dime planner and shopping list from the member page – and a special discount to the full service. See benefits here. 

De-cluttering Your Home – Creating a Peaceful Environment

De-cluttering Your Home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*affiliate links may be present

De-cluttering your home – one step at a time, one room at a time, one day at a time – is the first step to creating a more peaceful environment.

Getting rid of clutter helps you find clarity in mind and emotions. It ultimately relieves anxiety and guilt!

It can be easy to put it off when you are looking at clutter that has built up over time. You can become overwhelmed and end up putting it off even longer.

De-cluttering doesn’t have to be so difficult. We have a plan to help you jump in and get started, and then finish the race like a champ!

Getting Started:

Make a list of the major rooms you want to tackle. Then, break down each room with a list of the most important goals you have for that room, down to the least important.

Make a list for each goal in the rooms. For instance, I have a child’s bedroom that has been used for storage and now needs to be turned into a room suitable for a pre-teen boy. It is a mess.

The biggest problems in the room are clothes that the family has outgrown, and all the toys that they no longer use. Of course, that would be easy enough, but there are clothes in the mix that we need to save for other children, and toys that need to be kept for others.

It has been overwhelming because things have been piling up in that room for a long time – making it most uninviting  – not even a little bit of de-cluttering going on in there.  I have avoided it at all cost!

FlyLady.net

Step number one is to get a bin for clothes that need to be stored and a bin for those to give away, a bin for toys to keep and a bin for toys to give away. It is also important to have a trash can on hand to throw away anything that is broken or clothes that are not worth mending. Turn on your favorite music and jump right in!

Set a timer for 30 minutes at a time and work against the clock to get through the first pile. It is okay  if you don’t make it on time, just reset the clock and keep on going! Take a break in between or at least every hour or so, move on to the next area on your list until all the clutter in room one has been removed.

Pull out your cleaning list until everything sparkles and shines!

Bullet Points

  • Divide and Conquer – use bins to separate clutter into keep, give away, throw away
  • Set a timer – in 30 minute increments
  • Turn up the tunes
  • Check off your list until each section in the room is clutter free
  • Clean the room
  • Move to the next room in the house

One of the best ways to stay on top of clutter is to educate yourself with great homemaking wisdom from The Fly Lady – who happens to be one of the fabulous Molly Green Magazine writers. She’ll help you make a flight plan and divide your home into zones that will keep you from getting behind ever again.

Visit FlyLady.net to learn tips and tricks from a real pro! 

linking with Works for me Wednesday

 

Easy Cheesy Crackers from Build A Menu and cooking with kids

Easy Cheesy Crackers

You will love these Easy Cheesy Crackers – another great guest post and recipe from our partners at Build A Menu.

I like to give my kids recipes that involve them getting their hands dirty. They love to make a mess, love to get their hands right down into the process. So I figure, why fight it? I took a recipe for cheese crackers, ramped up the flavor a bit with some garlic, and tossed the pastry cutter idea out the window.

Who needs a pastry cutter when you have ten fingers ready to stir and squish? And while using cookie cutters might be super cute, with a relatively crumbly dough I knew the frustration factor (hard to move from board to cookie sheet!) would be too high for my children. So I had them just roll it out right on the cookie sheet and use a pastry wheel to cut squiggly lines.

They loved it! When the crackers came out of the oven, I actually had excited children standing by the cooling rack.

This recipe is a keeper!

Easy Cheesy Crackers

Ingredients

• 1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese

• 4 tablespoons butter, softened

• 3/4 cup flour

• 1/2 teaspoon salt

• 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

• 1 tablespoon milk

Directions

Heat oven to 350°. Put the cheese, butter (cut in pieces), flour, salt and garlic in a bowl.

Cracker Ingredients

Use clean hands to mix the ingredients together between your fingers (squish that butter!) until the dough is coarse crumbs, about the size of peas.

Add the milk and use your hands to form the dough into a ball. If you are a 7-year-old boy it is okay to make the dough into a volcano first. This is not a necessary step in creating the crackers, but may be necessary to the creative process; volcanoes often are – if you are a little boy.

Lightly flour a baking sheet. We lined ours with foil because it is an old beat-up sheet, but it proved to be useful as we were able to easily remove the crackers on the foil for cooling. Place the dough on it and roll out the dough until it is 1/8″ thick.

Cross cut dough for cheesy crackers

Cut lines in the dough like a grid to make cracker-sized squares. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges are golden. Cool on the baking sheet, then break apart into squares.

Yummy Cheesy squares

Build A Menu is an online menu planning service that makes meal planning and grocery shopping fast, easy and budget friendly. Not familiar with it? Take a minute to browse the site and see how it can save you time and money, too!

Go HERE to check it out and download your printed recipe for delicious Easy Cheesy Crackers!

Molly Members – Access Dine on a Dime HERE- Exclusively for Molly Members from Build A Menu! 

Members Page HERE – New MGM 2014 Issues

Molly’s $7 Suppers HERE 

linking with Works for me Wednesday

Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad: Build A Menu

Cilantro Chicken Salad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Doesn’t this Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad look spring fresh and amazing? It is a colorful and deliciously healthy way to welcome in the new season.

Just in case you haven’t noticed … we are big fans of the Build A Menu program! If you are a Molly Green Magazine member, you can download their Dine on a Dime menu and shopping list right from your member page.  You also have a discount code – exclusive for Molly Members to join and start using this fantastic program today!

From Build A Menu

Who says eating on a budget has to be boring? One of our goals here at Build A Menu is to give our members plenty of mouth-watering choices that are surprisingly low cost to make.

Take this recipe for example: Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad on Avocado Serves 4-6 people and costs under $6 at most grocery stores (that’s for the entire recipe, not per person!).

Not only does this recipe look fabulous and taste scrumptious, it costs less than $1 per serving to make! Want more low-cost recipes to feed your crew? Check out what’s on our menu this week.

How does Build a Menu work? Just choose your grocery store, select the recipes you want for the week, print your customized shopping list and you’re done. You’ll always know how much your groceries will cost before you ever get to the store.

This is an “S” meal if you follow the THM plan. We make grocery shopping fast, easy and budget friendly!

Bon Appetit!

~ The Team At Build A Menu

Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad

Cilantro Lime Chicken Salad on Avocado

Recipe type: Main       Cuisine: Chicken        Serves: 6

Ingredients
  • 3 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
  • 3 Tbsp mayo
  • 1 Tbsp brown mustard
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 5 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 3 avocados
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Half avocados and remove seeds.
  2. Mix all ingredients together (except avocados) in a small mixing bowl.
  3. Spoon into each avocado half and serve. Enjoy!

 

PRINT A Copy For Yourself HERE

linking with Works for me Wed 

Mexican Casserole: to feed a crowd

Feed a Crowd - Mexican Casserole

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mexican Casserole

“Here’s a great budget friendly recipe that’s easy to make and feeds a crowd. I fixed it for company this past weekend and it fed plenty of us with leftovers for lunch the next day! Serve it up with a salad and some fresh bakery bread and you’ve got an easy meal your guests will love and won’t bust your budget. In fact, you can get all the ingredients for the casserole for around $10 at most grocery stores. Not bad, huh? Give it a try, I think you’re going to love it.”  ~ Karee/ Build A Menu 

Mexican Casserole to feed a crowd

Prep time:  

Cook time:  
Total time:  
Serves: 10

Mexican Casserole

A great budget friendly, crowd pleasing recipe!

Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. In a large skillet, brown meat and drain off fat.
  3. Stir in beans, tomatoes, onion, taco seasoning, soup and water.
  4. Simmer over medium-low heat until everything is well combined and heated through.
  5. Grease a 9×13 casserole dish.
  6. Put down a layer of crushed tortilla chips, followed by a layer of the meat/bean mixture, then half of the cheddar cheese.
  7. Repeat layers.
  8. Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 min, or until bubbly. Let sit for 5-10 min before serving.

Print your own copy to try out this delicious feast of a casserole today – HERE

Teach Kids About Work and Money: Free Online Chore Chart

*affiliate links may be present

 

I just love this free online chore chart!

The chore list

The chore list (Photo credit: demandaj)

I’m always on the lookout for specials and free deals to improve our lives on the home front. MyJobChart.com is a valuable resource for families. Teaching kids about work and money is an important part of  family life. Having tools that make it simple can take the sting of chore time as they tend to build motivation.

FREE online chore chart that motivates your kids and earns them rewards that they can save, donate to charity, or spend on toys!

Motivating Your Kids Is Easy: Just 1-2-3:

1) Sign-up for MyJobChart!

2) Assign Chores to Your Kids

3) Reward Your Kids For Great Work!

 

Chores in a children's home

Chores in a children’s home (Photo credit: theirhistory)

A Chore Chart makes it easy to assign chores, and makes it more motivating for children to fulfill them.  It facilitates fun, engaging, hands-on learning and teaches children the principles of sharing, saving, and spending.  MyJobChart.com gives parents the tools they need to instill a strong work ethic and teach financial responsibility.

For me, an effective resource needs to be both frugal and simple to use – in order to be worth the time and effort of using it. As long as you are reasonably familiar with using online services, you should not have trouble with this one. I believe it can be especially beneficial in organizing large family chores.

Once your basic information is in place, it only takes a short time each week to add additional information to personalize any particular week or month for your family.

Do you use chore charts in your home? Have you tried an online version? 

Molly Green Magazine members gain wisdom and knowledge from years of practical application in the arts of household management from FlyLady.com  - Find out more about the extra benefits of becoming a Molly Member HERE. 

 

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Molly Green Magazine: Homesteading 101

Molly celebrates Homesteading!

In this issue, Molly brings you on a tour around the homestead, just in time for spring!

MGM_Mar-April 2014_Cover_X-Sm

Look for these topics and more:

  • In Notes from the Heart, Patricia Hunter talks about using what you’ve got
  • The FlyLady (Marla Cilley) talks to Molly readers about getting started with a system to help life become more organized
  • Sharon White provides a fun, votive candle holder project in Something Old, Something New
  • Gardening from the North and Gardening from the South are sure to give you great gardening tips, spring is the perfect time to begin planning!
  • In Hearth & HomeLisa Barthuly brings you some examples on natural spring cleaning
  • Eric Osborn is back and writes from the male perspective in Ancient Ways in the 21st Century
  • Kids in the Kitchen is just one of the featured articles from our friends over at Build a Menu
  • In Here’s to Your HealthSusan Lyttek shares how to survive ear infections at home
  • Beekeeping 101 is yet another featured article that will walk you through the basics of beekeeping

See why readers love Molly Green Magazine—see what’s inside!

 

Click here for a preview!

Director of Publication: Becky Bleck
Director of Advertising: Lisa Barthuly
Project Editor: Dara Ekanger
Cover Design, Layout, and Art Direction: Ronda Bodenstab

Contributing Writers: Rhonda Barfield, Lisa Barthuly, Karee Blunt, Leah Courtney, Betty Daley, James Duke, Meredith Duke, Sharon Duncan, Lisa Holcomb, Patricia Hunter, McKenzi Knapp, Susan Lyttek, Eric Osborn, April Schroader, Sharon Shirey, Morgan Treece, Anna Vaagen, Amanda van der Gulik, Sharon White

 

Publication: 2014
Pages: 71
File Size: 10.9

 

Spring is in the air with Molly Green Magazine!  Now is the time to spruce up your finances and sweep out the unnecessary expenses. Why not let Molly Green Magazine help you Spring Clean with savings inside and outside your home to get some more green in your wallet. ~ Laura Williams

Subscribe to a Molly Membership and receive all these goodies for just $7.95/mo!

All the back issues (from 2009-2013), 5 Molly E-Books, the new 2014 issues, The Old Schoolhouse Planners, exclusive access to Build a Menu’s Dine on a Dime menu planning, cottage industry market place shops for handmade goods (a networking and selling platform for handmade & homemade items), wonderful new columns from FlyLady, TheCookieLady, and the ladies of Build a Menu to name a few. Molly is spreading her wings to include back yard farming, sustainability, and all things home industry!

For only $7.95 a month (cancel any time!) you receive not only the bi-monthly Molly Green Magazine, but also MUCH more!

Purchase your very own membership NOW!

Molly has a wealth of information and support to share in one easy-to-read, handy resource! Discover for yourself all of the exciting and imaginative ideas Molly has to offer—ideas that could save you big money and needless headaches!

You’ll glean some of the best inexpensive ideas and projects for everyday living that you can find and be inspired to be self-confident, creative, and resourceful too.

For just $4.95, download just the March/April issue now!

 Join Molly daily and follow her adventures in fiscally responsible homemaking at

www.MollyGreen.com.

And then keep watching for the next Molly Green Magazine.

 

Big Giveaway: from Favado to encourage Family Dinners

*affiliate links present 
We take family dinners seriously, here at Molly Green. The family time,  the planning, and preparing of family meal time is not always easy to come by these days for busy families.

An attractive dinner setting

Does dinner time at your house leave you feeling frustrated? Is it too difficult to menu plan and serve a meal that everyone will enjoy while sticking to a budget. Don’t be discouraged because you are not alone.
Guest post from Inspired Bloggers Network – with Giveaway hosted, in part, by Molly Green!
Over the next two weeks, the Inspired Bloggers Network is teaming together with Favado and $5 Dinners to equip you with the tips and inspiration you need to make dinner time with the family a less stressful ordeal. You can follow all of our updates in social media with the hashtag #inspiredfamilydinners, but first, we want you to get to know our sponsors with an awesome giveaway!

Enter to win an All-Clad Cookware set and $5 Dinners Cookbook Gift Basket for Inspired Family Dinners with Favado

 
Enter to win an All-Clad Cookware Set (valued at $800) from Favado and a Cookbook Gift Basket from $5 Dinners between now and February 23rd at 11:59 PM CST.

About Favado

Favado is a mobile savings app that helps shoppers stop overspending on groceries by notifying them when their favorite items are on sale.
With Favado, users can…
  • Compare prices across multiple local grocery and drugstores.
  • Search for best prices on individual ingredients.
  • Personalize their favorite products and brands to quickly see best deals for those items each week.
  • Quickly find coupons for the products that are already on sale for “double the discount.”
  • Build a shopping list in the app, so you don’t forget anything that’s on sale!
Favado has money saving experts who hand select sales and coupons every week — in more than 65,000 grocery and drugstores nationwide — to enable discovery of the best deals for savings up to 70% on everyday items.

So, sign up for Favado and start saving.

Then, follow Favado everywhere: Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

Win $1,000 with #FavadoLove


About $5 Dinners

Erin Chase has helped millions of families across the countries enjoy delicious and nutritious family dinners, for less! She’s put together a gift basket with a copy of each of her cookbooks:
The $5 Dinner Mom Cookbook , her The $5 Dinner Mom Breakfast and Lunch Cookbook, and her The $5 Dinner Mom One-Dish Dinners Cookbook -along with some fabulous cooking utensils!

You can find more of her great recipes at 5DollarDinners.com.

Enter to win

To enter for a chance to with the All-Clad Cookware Set (valued at $800) from Favado and a Cookbook Gift Basket from $5 Dinners, you must choose from any (or all) of the choices in the giveaway widget below. This giveaway will close on February 23rd at 11:59 PM CST. For official rules, please view below.

Follow link below to enter Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. Facebook and Pinterest are in no way connected or responsible for this giveaway and are held blameless of all legal responsibilities. Winning entry will be selected through Rafflecopter using Random.org and will be notified by email on February 24, 2014. If the winner has not responded within 48 hours, another winner will be selected. Good luck.

Build a Menu recipe- Philly Beef Skillet: Sneak Peek Monday

Philly Beef Skillet Recipe

Build a Menu RecipePhilly Beef Skillet: on Sneak Peek Monday

If you have not yet met our friends from Build a Menu – you should hop over to their blog or their Facebook page (here) and say hello!

 

Enjoy a few valuable words from Lisa -

I have to admit to you that my kids LOVE Hamburger Helper.  However, I don’t.  I don’t like how processed it all is and how much sodium it has in it.  It is fast and convenient and can make a busy mom feel like she’s cooking a nutritious meal.

I’ve been known to do so as well.  However, I can honestly say it’s probably been at least 3 years since Hamburger Helper has made it’s way into my kitchen.   So, I started looking for other alternatives to the much loved (by my kids) Hamburger Helper and I’m telling you , this recipe is just as quick and easy.

Sure, I had to chop some onion but that really wasn’t a big deal.  It was fast, easy and yummy and I had the satisfaction of knowing that it was also so much more healthy and “clean” than a box of Hamburger Helper.  AND…..it only cost about $10.50 at most major grocery stores for the ingredients and serves 4-6!  Enjoy!

If you are following the Trim Healthy Mama plan, then this is an “S” meal.

 

Philly Beef Skillet

 

Download your FREE printable recipe

and read more about the mission and the resources available at Build a Menu.

Molly Members – Check your Member Page for a special discount code to save big on the already affordable full program at BAM or take advantage of your exclusive access to the Dine on a Dime menu planners – now also downloadable from your Molly Green Member page!

We have more great member benefits coming your way – stay tuned!!

 

6 Major Benefits of Family Homesteading

benefits of family homesteading

There are many aspects of homesteading, and the challenges are great, but the rewards are even greater! These are only a few of the major benefits of family homesteading:

Homesteading shows you what matters most

Homesteading brings you back to basics. It changes the way you look at things, the difference between wants and needs become much more clear when in most other modern day life, the lines are much more blurred.

It is a Journey towards self-sufficiency

Homesteading is a lifestyle, a way of thinking, getting back to nature, back to the land, a journey towards becoming self-sufficient. There are many different levels of homesteading, and even for those who live in the city, changes can be made which will set you on that journey and enable you to incorporate various aspects of the homestead life into daily activities.

Homesteading is a Rewarding endeavor 

Homesteading moves away from the “instant gratification” that comes along so often in today’s culture. There is a lot of hard work that goes in to the entire process of becoming a homesteading family.  There are plants to be tended, animals to care for, and always plenty of work to be done. It is also one of the most rewarding endeavors one can ever undertake!

Satisfying and Healthy 

When you sprout seeds, nurture and harvest them and place them on the table – there is not much that is as satisfying as this back to basics, provision for the family and honestly, well, the food just tastes better!  Although it takes a lot of hard work – it also creates joy and provides a deep feeling of satisfaction in knowing you are making healthy choices for the family. Growing your own food is one of the healthiest life choices you can make these days.

family homesteading

Homesteading Teaches Respect 

Most people rush off to the grocery store each week and fill the cart full of various meats without ever fully appreciating what it means. There is a loss of life, a sacrifice which has taken place to put that meat on the table. Sadly, most people never have a full appreciation or develop respect for what it means to be a meat eater. It is easy to forget where the food we so often take for granted, comes from.

There are sometimes hard choices and difficult tasks that must be done to maintain a sustainable lifestyle – but in the process, there is a respect for the animals God created. There is a connection between the animals and the sustenance, an appreciation.

Deep Sense of Gratitude and Belonging 

There is an attitude of gratitude which comes from investing time, work, and effort into homesteading projects. The end result is something to be proud of. For children, participating in the work to feed the family, can produce a strong sense of belonging. They understand early on that each member of the family plays an important role. It builds self-esteem, and deeper character.

Although it takes a lot of hard work – it also creates joy and provides a deep feeling of satisfaction which can be hard to find otherwise in today’s society and fast paced lifestyle.

 

These are but a few of the many benefits of family homesteading. Most often, it does not happen overnight, the change of mindset to that of a homesteader. Even taking small steps towards a more back to basics lifestyle can make a positive difference in your life. One step at a time – works for me!

Do you have some simple tips for those who want to begin a journey towards a more back to basics lifestyle?

Linking with Works For Me Wed

Learn more about family homesteading, homemaking, and all things home industry with the all new Molly Green Magazine and enjoy the many benefits of  a MG Membership – find out more HERE!