Friday, March 11, 2016

My first Zaycon Order

About two years ago I read about Zaycon from blog posts on facebook.  Each post that I had read, always talked about their chicken deals, so I assumed that Zaycon only sold chicken.  I signed up to receive emails from them and browsed their website.  That's when I found out that they sold more than just chicken. They actually sell fish, chicken, beef, pork, ham and ground turkey.  

As I looked at their prices, I saw that boneless skinless chicken breasts are $1.69 lb.  While that is a good deal compared to most grocery stores, I could get almost the same price at the Commissary, so I just moved on and did not give them another thought.

Last May we moved to South Carolina and needless to say, my first trip to the commissary was disappointing.  The cost of boneless skinless chicken breasts was over $2.00 lb.  At this time I decided to do some more digging into Zaycon.  I posted on facebook to see if I could find someone I personally knew who had used this company.  Unfortunately, no one I knew had ever used them.  I wasn't sure I wanted to be a guinea pig to find out how the process worked and if it was worth it.

Again, the Army moved us....this time to Arizona.  I checked out the prices at the Commissary and was in shock.  The same chicken I was able to get in Tennessee for $1.79lb cost me $2.19lb here.  I decided it was time to stop procrastinating and to just take the plunge and try Zaycon.  I didn't want to jump all in and order multiple things, as I am not a risk taker....ordering 40 lbs of chicken was enough of a risk for me.

In January, I went back to Zaycon Fresh to find out more about their product and to place my first order.  This is what I found out:

  1. They sell high quality fresh meats
  2. All meats are sold by the case
  3. The company is located in Spokane, WA but has delivery locations all over the USA
  4. Their chicken has no added hormones, additives or artificial ingredients
  5. Zaycon sells more than just chicken
So, I decided to give them a try.  I placed my first order for 40 pounds of boneless skinless chicken breasts.  You pay online when you place your order.  My delivery was set for about 7 weeks later.  A week before my scheduled pickup date, I received a reminder email.  Two days before, I got a text to let me know the date, time and location.  The morning of my pickup, I received yet another text. This company is definitely thorough.

I was excited about going to get my order that I actually was a little early, but the companies truck was there waiting.  I followed the signs and pulled up to the back of the delivery truck. The gentleman took my name, confirmed my order and put my chicken in the back of my van...with no need for me to get out of my car.

Cars lined up to pickup their orders.

My 40 lbs of boneless skinless chicken.

My box contained 40 pounds of chicken in 4 smaller bags containing approximately 10 pounds in each.

The portion sizes of chicken are quite large.  
Below is a closeup picture of the chicken on a large dinner plate.

My daughter and I took the next hour or so to trim, cut, chop and bag.  I did one freezer meal and probably would have done more if I prepared ahead of time but I am also baking 240 cookies for a ministry event at the chapel on post this Friday night.  There is only so much I can do.

I had a great experience with Zaycon Fresh and will try one of their other bulk meat purchases in the very near future.  Tonight we are eating our first chicken meal, so I will have to let you know how it tastes.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

31 Ways to Save Money this Month

1.      Make a budget.
2.      Use coupons and shop the sales.
3.      Take unwanted clothing to consignment shops.
4.      Make a donation to a non-profit and get a tax receipt.
5.      Eat leftovers.
6.      Use a cash back website like Ebates when shopping online.
7.      Plan a free date night using these ideas.
8.      Create a meal plan and shopping list before going to the store.
9.      Make your own household cleaners.
10.  Buy store brand items instead of name brands.
11.  Call your cable or internet provider to see if there is a way to lower your bill.
12.  Use in network ATMs to avoid those crazy fees.
13.  Get rewards cards for all the places you shop.
14.  Pay your bills on time to avoid late fees.
15.  Replace the filters in your home.
16.  Wash your laundry in cold water instead of warm/hot.
17.  Make gifts instead of buying them.
18.  Cut back on convenience foods and cook more from scratch.
19.  Make your own laundry detergent.
20.  Buy used.
21.  Shop for holiday items after the holiday and save for the next year.
22.  Swap babysitting with friends or neighbors.
23.  Pack your lunch.
24.  Borrow books, movies, and music from the library.
25.  Go meatless for dinner at least once a week.
26.  Create a price notebook.
27.  Make your coffee at home.
28. Invite friends over for a potluck instead of heading to a restaurant.
29.  Don’t shop convenience stores.
30.  Pay bills online to save on postage.
31.  Buy in bulk and share with a friend.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Creating A Masterpiece

Last year at a local homeschool conference, my 9 year old daughter had the opportunity to participate in a hands on arts class offered by Creating a Masterpiece and taught by Sharon Hofer.  The class she took utilized pastels.  By the end of the lesson, my daughter walked away with a complete piece of artwork.  I was amazed!!  I decided to purchase one of her DVDs to take home and try with the other girls.

This is the curriculum that we purchased.

Creating a Masterpiece is a DVD driven, art curriculum where the teacher and creator, Sharon Hofer, walks the student through step by step to create their masterpiece.  Her videos are not only for those who like pastels, but she utilizes many different mediums including crayon, ink, pencil, watercolor and much more.

While we purchased our curriculum almost a year ago, we finally got around to getting the supplies and pulling out the DVD to give it a try.  Once we gathered everything together and started the video, I realized that I did not have the correct colors of pastels.  I was missing one of the colors they were going to need.  Guess that's what I get for buying my pastels when we lived in South Korea almost three years ago.  We were able to improvise and the girls had fun and made a mess while watching the video and creating their artwork.

And here is the finished product...a masterpiece.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Sale AOP at CBD

Click Here

Mark your calendars for the one day only sale on Alpha Omega Curriculum at on January 13, 2015!

Week One - No Spend

So this month I am doing a No Spend January/Eat from your Pantry.  If you want the specifics on what that means, go here to my previous post.  In essence, I am only spending $150 on groceries this month for my family of 7, when we normally would spend about $150.00 a week.

Before starting I did stock up on frozen veggies, milk, eggs and bread, which went into the freezer.  I made one trip to the grocery store this past week and struck gold, while only spending $26.00.

One of our family's favorite fruits is strawberries.  When I buy them, we can go through a pound or two at a sitting.  I am pretty picky about price and will not spend more than $2.50 per pound.  When I went to the commissary before starting this challenge, one pound of strawberries was $4.99.  That's ridiculous to me!!  I opted out on that purchase at the time.  But when I ran to the store this week, they had two pound packages of strawberries for $1.99.  YES!!!

This is cheaper than frozen berries right now.  So I took advantage of the sale and stocked up.  I bought 14 pounds of berries.  I forgot to take a picture before we washed, ate, cut, froze and dipped strawberries in chocolate.  They were YUMMY!