25 Freezer Meals in 3 Hours for Only $88

25 Freezer Meals in 3 Hours for Only $88

As some of you know, I’m married to an amazing chef.  So that means gourmet meals beautifully prepared on the table every single night, right?  Not so much.  The reality is that he is usually working and the dinner time dilemma is up to me.  Hate is such a strong word, but it is safe to say that I don’t enjoy cooking.  Dinner time at our house usually consists of whatever I can get on the table quickly that is simple to make and reasonably healthy.  Fast, easy, delicious, and healthy are my pre-requisites to anything that makes it to my dinner table.

Freezer Meals

Spaghetti Sauce Freezer MealI tiptoed into the world of freezer cooking a few years ago.  After my first big batch, I was hooked.  I love that I can make a bunch of meals all at once – especially on a day when my chef husband is home and can help me with all of the dicing, chopping, and prep work!  It is so easy to spend a few hours and put together a ton of delicious meals we can freeze and then heat or cook for dinner during the week.  This has fast, healthy, delicious and easy written all over it!  We did a huge batch of freezer meals just before my youngest child was born and it was one of the best things I did to prepare for a new baby!

This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one of the links and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission.  Doing so will not increase the cost of any purchase and does not influence my opinion.

Before You Start

We made two investments when we first started making freezer meals.  I have been so happy with both of them.  The first was a small deep freezer.  While this isn’t necessary and I successfully made freezer meals for a year before we bought one, having one has meant that we can really stock up on meals for each prep we do.  This was especially fantastic when I was stocking up before the birth of my youngest son.

The second investment we made was in one of these.  In my opinion, this item is a must and frankly, ours has paid for itself many times over.  Gallon freezer bags can work, however, they don’t truly seal out all of the air.  This means unfortunately, I have ended up having to throw out a meal or two that succumbed to freezer burn.  I couldn’t recommend one highly enough!  If you do get one, I also recommend stocking up on these bags.  They are so much less expensive than the ones you can buy in the store and last a really long time.

Spaghetti Saturdays

Enjoying the Delicious Freezer MealMy middle son has always had some texture issues when it has come to soft food.  So even though I have some awesome crockpot recipes, he is not usually a fan.  Not wanting to give up on the whole concept of freezer meals, I have adapted the recipes I cook.  Our recent favorites have become spaghetti sauce, lasagna, and baked manicotti.  The BEST part is that all three of these recipes use the same base sauce.

The first time I made this recipe, I started out making the sauce for a lasagna and ended up with some leftover sauce and decided to portion it and freeze it for spaghetti sauce.  It was a huge hit!  So much so that we’ve started having “Spaghetti Saturdays” in our house and it’s on our menu nearly every week.  We ran out of spaghetti sauce a few weeks ago, so this week I decided to make a double batch of the sauce and split it for spaghetti, lasagna, and manicotti.

25 Meals Ready to Be Enjoyed!

Freezer Meal PrepWith the double batch of sauce, we ended up making a grand total of 25 meals!  It was enough for 13 portions of spaghetti sauce (about 2 cups each), 8 pans of lasagna and 4 pans of manicotti.  I am so excited because that translates into 25 nights in which I will not need to stress about what I’m going to make for dinner.  There is no worry about having all of the ingredients I need in the pantry.  I don’t have to stress if I will have enough time (and sanity) to make it!  We typically shop at Target for pantry items and Sprouts Farmer’s market for good quality meats and produce.  With enough on our shopping list to make 25 freezer meals, the total came out to $87.61.  This breaks down to only $3.50 per meal!

 

Here is how I did it:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well, I suppose I should mention that I did already give away 3 of these meals.  The truth is that they make awesome gifts to bless your friends with!  I brought one over to our neighbor that comes over once a week to watch my sleeping boys while I run to pick up my daughter from dance.  I gave one to each of my kid’s teachers in a basket I made for them for teacher appreciation week this year (they LOVED them!)  So to me, these were great reasons to share a few of my delicious meals.

Get the Recipes and Shopping List

Freezer MealLet me know if you would like the recipe for this awesome, versatile sauce.  Just enter your email below and I’ll email you the shopping list and recipe so you can make all of this delicious food for yourself!

I hope you are as excited about how fast, healthy, delicious and easy this recipe is and have enjoyed this post!  Be sure to stay connected to all of the great ideas from The Crafty Organized Mom by signing up for updates.  When you do, you’ll also grab a free copy of our Family Meeting Guide + Meeting Printable!

Easy DIY Fabric Bunting

Easy DIY Fabric Bunting

I’ve developed a small obsession with fabric buntings lately.  You may also know them as a fabric banner.  They are really inexpensive, so simple to make, and seem to add just the right touch to any party or special occasion.  I recently used them at my son’s baptism party and my son’s first birthday party.  I’ve had several requests to either buy one or directions to make it yourself so I thought I would share the step-by-step simple directions with you so you can make your very own fabric bunting for your next party or special occasion.  If you’d prefer to have one made for you, please contact us and send us your request.

Supplies

(Directions are for 2 – Eight pennant fabric buntings.  Adjust your supplies up or down based on your desired length)

  • 3 Coordinating Fabrics: Either Fat Quarters or 1/4 yard cuts will work.  Prewash all fabric.
  • 1 Coordinating Spool of 1″ Ribbon
  • Paper Template (see directions below)
  • Rotary Cutter and Cutting Surface (alternatively fabric scissors will work but will take you a lot longer)
  • Ruler
  • Sewing Machine with Coordinating Thread
  • Iron and Ironing Board
  • Spray Starch (optional but recommended)

Paper Template

Fabric Bunting Template

The paper template is really easy to make.  Start with an 8 1/2″ x 11″ piece of cardstock (printer paper will work if you don’t’ have cardstock, but won’t stand up as well.

  1. Draw a 6″ line across the top
  2. Measure 3″ to the center and draw an 8″ line down forming a “T”
  3. Draw a line from either side of the top line to the middle bottom line.  These lines should be approx. 8 3/4″
  4. Cut out your template

Step-By-Step Directions

Ironing:

  1. Fabric: Iron each cut of fabric.  Fold in 1/2 the long way – right sides out.  Spray with starch and iron again.
  2. Ribbon: Fold the ribbon in 1/2 and iron a fold in the ribbon.

Fabric Bunting Ribbon

Cutting

  1. Lay out your first fabric on your rotary cutting mat – Remember that it should already be ironed in half
  2. Trim the open end so that the fabric is exactly 8″
  3. Lay your pattern on the left edge of the fabricEasy DIY Fabric Bunting
  4. Cut each edge of your first triangle.Easy DIY Fabric Bunting
  5. Flip your pattern to cut an upside down triangle with your next cut.
  6. Continue alternating cuts until you have cut all the way across the fabric.  You will end up with two cuts of fabric back to back with right sides facing out.  Leave each set together.Easy DIY Fabric Bunting
  7. Repeat for each selection of fabric

Sewing:

  1. Take your first triangle set (two pieces of fabric wrong sides together) and sew down the right side of the triangle and up the left side of the triangle.  You will leave the top unsewn for now.Easy DIY Fabric Bunting
  2. Continue to do this for each triangle set you have cut.  It’s easier to “chain sew” these, meaning to just keep sewing from one triangle to the next.  Just leave a few stitches in between each triangle.  I decided to sew mine in the order I wanted to create the bunting in so I didn’t have to sort it later.Easy DIY Fabric Bunting
  3. If you chain sewed your pennants, cut them apart.  Make sure they are in the order you will create your bunting.
  4. Grab your ironed ribbon.  Leave a length of ribbon at the beginning of your bunting depending on how much extra length you need to tack/tie it up.  I stapled mine to the fence, so only needed about 2″.  You may need more or less depending on how you want to use it.
  5. Fold the ribbon on the top of your first pennant.  Sew with a zig zag stitch sewing the pennant into the ribbon.Easy DIY Fabric Bunting
  6. Repeat until you have sewn ribbon across all of the tops of your pennants.  You can sew either direction, so choose the one that feels the most natural to you.  I made two buntings so that I could lay they across the top of each other.  Adjust your bunting to fit your individual project.Easy DIY Fabric Bunting
  7. Finish the ends as you desire.  I lopped the end back on itself and sewed it down.

Easy DIY Fabric Bunting

That’s it!

You now have your own fabric bunting.  This would be perfect for party decor that you could use over and over.  It would also be a perfect project for your child’s room or baby’s nursery.  I would love to see pictures of your beautiful fabric buntings!  Send me your picture at: [email protected] and I may feature a few on this post.

Smash Cake

I hope you have enjoyed this post and all the step-by-step guide to make your own fabric bunting!  Be sure to stay connected to all of the great ideas from The Crafty Organized Mom by signing up for updates.  When you do, you’ll also grab a free copy of our Family Meeting Guide + Meeting Printable!

Easy DIY Wall Decor Gift

Easy DIY Wall Decor Gift

Whenever I have the chance to give a gift, I always try to give something personalized or something that I’ve made.  I feel like it adds special meaning when the recipient knows that I’ve selected the gift just or them.  Or I have taken the time to make something with them in mind.

I recently had the opportunity to make this adorable gift for a dear friend that is expecting her first daughter.  This project was so quick and easy.  I was done, start to finish, in about 15 minutes with this easy DIY wall decor gift.  Whether you are an aspiring crafter or a seasoned pro, this project is a perfect gift that anyone can make.

This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one of the links and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission.  Doing so will not increase the cost of any purchase and does not influence my opinion.

DIY Wall Decor Gift

Supply List

  • Must Have Craft Tools (Especially the glue and tweezers)
  • Craft Knife + Safe Cutting Surface
  • Fine Grit Sand Paper (optional, but recommended)
  • Chipboard Heart
  • 1 – 12×12 Piece of Scrapbook Paper
  • 1 – 8 1/2×11 Piece of Coordinating Paper (or even a paper scrap!) for Name
  • Flower or other Embellishment.  I found mine at Hobby Lobby.  Amazon also has these that would also work.
  • Cricut Explore + Mat (or Chipboard letters – see below)

Supplies for Heart Wall Hanging

Directions

Step 1 – Place your 12×12 piece of scrapbook paper face down on your working surface.

Step 2 – Cover the front of the Chipboard heart (or shape of your choice) with glue.  Place it glue side down on the back of the 12×12 piece of paper.

Step 3 – On your cutting safe surface, trim around the outside of your heart with your craft knife.

Step 4 – (Optional but Recommended) – Sand the just the outside edge all around your shape.  This will help smooth out any rough edges and give your gift a uniform, finished look.

Step 5 -Cut the name with your Cricut Explore.  Be sure that the total length of the name will fit on the shape.  Alternatively, if you don’t have a Cricut Explore, you can purchase ready-made letters like these instead.  Use the glue and attach the letters.

Step 6 – Attach your selected element to your heart.  Depending on the shape and weight of your element, consider using hot glue to attach it to ensure that it will stick through the long haul.

That’s it!  Even if you’ve never made anything like this before, it shouldn’t take you very long.

I am already planning all of the great opportunities I can make more of these adorable hearts!  Valentine’s Day is coming up.  It would also make a very cute birthday gift for a little girl.  Best of all, it is really versatile.  Choose a different shape and color and the possibilities are endless.

I hope you have enjoyed this easy DIY Wall Decor Gift project!  If you make one for yourself, be sure to send me a picture.  I’d love to show off your awesome project.

If you liked this post, I also hope you will sign up for my mailing list.  Just for signing up, you will get a great family meeting guide + printable.