Sunday, November 29, 2015

Weekly Menu Planning

Time to plan my weekly supper menu, before we run into some crisis and the kids start bugging me to order pizza on a random night (they try that pretty frequently but I try not to give in...)!

So here's the plan. It might be a little boring, but I'm trying not to shop much this week:

Sunday night: Whole wheat pasta with tomato sauce and cheese, fresh vegetable sticks

Monday night: Shabbat leftovers

Tuesday night: Homemade dinner rolls or bagels (depends how much energy I have), cream cheese, mushroom-barley soup 

Wednesday night: Black bean and tomato soup, baked potatoes, whatever fresh vegetables need to be used up.

Thursday night: Split pea soup, random leftovers from the week

Lunches will be leftovers or sandwiches or pancakes...

What's your plan for keeping your family fed for the week?

Food Recall (Smoked Salmon)! (Israel)

Shamir Salads and the Ministry of health announced a recall of the following products due to a listeria contamination issue:

Frozen smoked salmon, 100g packages, production date 27.10.15 (use by date thru 27.04.16)

Refrigerated smoked salmon, 100g packages, production date 27.10.15 (use by date thru 26.11.15)

The affected products are being removed from store shelves. Consumers who have purchased these products should return the products to the store where purchased for a refund. If questions arise, customers can call Shamir Salads' Customer Service line at 03- 906-7744.

Please share this post with your friends and family who may have purchased these products!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Thanksgiving-Shabbat Menu

Once again, we'll be commemorating Thanksgiving this year. This is a holiday steeped in family traditions, and part of me wishes we could be with family this year (as always), but our families all just live too far away...

Since we can't be with family, and Thursday is not a vacation day in Israel, we'll celebrate on Shabbat with some friends, and we are looking forward to it!

Here's our work-in-progress Thanksgiving Shabbat menu:

Challah with Oat Bran and Flax Seeds (using Spelt flour instead of Whole Wheat flour)

Pumpkin Soup

Turkey - I'm making some parts and a friend is bringing some parts too

Cornbread Stuffing

Cranberry Sauce (we have 2 cans ofWhole Foods cranberry sauce with NO high fructose corn syrup! YAY!)

Garlic Roast Potatoes

Apple Kugel or Apple Crisp

Random Side dishes being brought by a friend


Dessert: brownies (wheat-free) and chocolate chip squares

I'm still putting up a Black Bean Cholent for lunch, to eat with the leftovers. We plan to have plenty of leftovers, but I am also making a pan of chicken and rice, because my family doesn't want turkey for both Shabbat meals. 

I guess you could call this a Thanksgiving-Shabbat Fusion sort of thing!

Do you "do" Thanksgiving? I'd love to hear about it!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Free Sample! (Israel)'ve got another freebie for you -- this time you can get a free sample of Kotex sanitary pads.

Just go to their website and click on הזמנת ערכת התנסות - it's the link located right in the middle of the page directly below the logo, or scroll down to the bottom of the page.

The form asks you to fill in your name, address, birthday, email address, and cellphone number. You can then choose between two samples - "Kotex Young" or "Kotex Designer".

Please share this freebie with your friends who may enjoy it!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Boil Water Advisory for Nahariya

The Ministry of Health has announced that the municipal water supply in Nahariya is unsafe to drink right now.

Until further notice, all those in Nahariya should boil water before using it for drinking, cooking, food preparation, preparation of medication, and tooth brushing. This advisory includes water from a home filtration system. In other words, all water that originated at the municipal water supply is unsafe at the moment.

Stay healthy!

UPDATE: On Nov. 19th, the Ministry of Health announced that the following neighborhoods can use tap water again:

Kibbutz Galuyot
Nachalat Asher
Kiryat Asor

There has been no word on the rest of the town as of Nov. 22, 2015. Please check with the Ministry of Health at *5400 for clarification.


Sunday, November 15, 2015

Food Recalls (Israel)

I have two recalls to tell you about today.

First one:

FiloTuna brand has announced a recall of it's "Prince" brand chunk light tuna in vegetable oil, sold in 960g cans and 158g cans, with production dates between Aug 18 and Aug 28 (2015), with expiration dates between Aug. 18 and Aug. 28, 2019, due to possibly elevated levels of histamine in the product.

Consumption of tuna with elevated histamine can cause symptoms of an allergic reaction.

Consumers who have purchased this product are asked NOT to eat it.

To arrange for a replacement of this product, call customer service at 08-623-2983, Sunday - Thursday, between 8 am and 4 pm.

Second one:


MarmoLite brand has announced a recall of sugar-free grape flavored syrup concentrate, 1 Liter bottles, with production code 15-285, and best if used by date of 12-08-2016 on the cover.

The bottles in question may have expanded, and do not taste right. They should not be used.

Please call Dansher's customer service at 03-902-0333 to arrange to return your purchase and receive a replacement.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Free Sample - Neal's Yard

Neal's Yard Remedies is offering a free sample - just sign up on their website and they'll send you a coupon! Just fill out the form on the left side of the page with your name, phone number, email address, and mailing address, and you'll be directed to a page from which you can print your coupon. I'm sure you can unsubscribe from emails and SMS messages afterwards.

They're a natural cosmetics company, but I've never tried them. I hope to soon -  I just got my coupon!

Monday, November 9, 2015

11.11 - 11.12 ShoppingIL Info!

Israelis looking for deals, this post is for you!

We all love shopping from the comfort of our couches, and usually we do so from abroad, and have to deal with the possible import taxes and all sorts of restrictions.

Well - good news, once again there will be a HUGE online shopping promo! Google and Isracard have teamed up to offer major discounts to Israelis who will shop online during November 11 and 12!

For more information, and a list of participating websites, check out the ShoppingIL page!

Tip: Save an extra 30 shekels when you sign up for "MasterPass" - extra protection for your credit card when shopping online.

And if you still feel like shopping from abroad, Aliexpress is also offering a major 11.11 sale!

I hope you find some good deals!
(Let me know what you find - leave a comment below!)

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Snap In - Money Saving Tip

note: this post contains affiliate links. Thanks for your support

Saving money on groceries is a REALLY popular topic. It seems like some expenses are just too "fixed" to try to reduce (It's really hard to reduce a mortgage payment one month!), but groceries are somewhat flexible for most people. While you can occasionally  find coupons for groceries in Israel (go ahead, click and see if there are any you can use!), I find they are not nearly as common as they were when I lived in America, and they are definitely not as "high value".

In order to stretch my grocery budget a little bit further, I use Snap In in addition to the few coupons I find, the sug bet rack, and searching for discounts and deals (and of course, cooking from scratch!).

As I've explained previously, Snap In is a rebate program. You buy a product, scan your receipt, and Snap In will give you a rebate. (They credit your account and then send you a payment when you accrue 100 shekels in credit.)

So far, I'm happy with Snap In. They pay directly into my bank account, and they're very user friendly. If ever there's a question about a rebate, they are quite responsive.

I find the best way to use their program is to take them up on "Free Offers" (who doesn't like free food?) and also use their rebates to help decide which brand to buy. So, if a particular product will give me a 5 shekel rebate via Snap In, but its competitor is 1 shekel less, I may decide to buy the one that comes out cheaper after rebate. This is only good if you actually can afford to wait for the rebate, obviously. Each person will have to make that decision for him/herself (I know it's not always feasible - I've been there!).

Here's a sample of the current rebate offers you can take advantage of once you join SnapIn:

Reduced Lactose Milk - 15% rebate
Vanilla flavored milk (single serve) - 40% rebate (one of my kids thinks this is a really awesome treat!)
Goats' Milk - 25% rebate
Yoplait Whipped "Shtuzim" - 2 containers FREE
Karlo pudding - 10% rebate
Chocolate milk - in all sizes - 25% rebate
Yoplait Yogurt - single serve containers - Buy 9, Get the 10th FREE
Spreadable "Bulgarit" Cheese - 50% rebate
"HaShef HaLavan" products - 20% rebate
Yolo - one container FREE

Carbonated Iced Tea Drinks - 50% rebate

Advance Plus Formula - 10% rebate

More rebates are lised on SnapIn's website, and they do change from time to time.
If you haven't tried it out, give it a try! If you've signed up already but haven't yet tried uploading a receipt, go ahead and give it a try! It's really not hard and you may find yourself getting rebates!

Note: upload your receipts as soon as possible, and definitely within the 30 day limit.

Let me know if you use SnapIn, I'd love to hear what you think!

UPDATE: I recently started using Snap.In's mobile app, and it REALLY makes getting rebates as easy as snapping a picture! It takes me almost no time at all, and I've gotten a couple of hundred shekels from them since I joined! What are you waiting for? Join today!

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Printable Coupon!

A note about cheese: I buy my cheese at the cheese counter, I find it cheapest that way, and you get the exact quantity you needed.

But if you don't have access to a cheese counter, or need to pick some things up in a hurry, here's a coupon for you for 20% off thinly sliced Noam cheese (200gr package)!

This coupon expires April 30, 2016. It's good at many stores, including Shufersal Deal, Shufersal Sheli, Yesh Chesed and Yesh BaShchuna, Mega, Mega-Bool, Mega Ba'Ir, You, Zol B'Shefa, Tiv Taam, Rami Levy, Yeinot Bitan, Yochnanof, Kimat Chinam, Victory, Machsanei HaShuk, and select other stores. (I did not know that all of those chains still exist. Who's seen a Zol B'Shefa or a Kimat Chinam lately?!)

Anyhow - enjoy your savings! 

Be sure to check the Coupons link to see which other coupons are still valid!

Menu for the Week

I'm trying to get a handle on the week ahead of me - it's going to be a little - no, a lot - busy.  There is so much going on - here's a sampling of it: Our youngest daughter is turning 8, we have multiple playdates arranged besides all of the usual afternoon activities, and my son's programming chugim (which he runs out of our home for local children) are beginning. Oh and we're making a kiddush this coming Shabbat to celebrate our daughter's completion of Mishnayot Seder Nashim, and a few more things!

So I'm a little overwhelmed and even feeling anxious about the week ahead, and the best way to conquer that feeling is to Make A Plan.

So here's the plan:

Food will be very simple food during the week - lunches will be sandwiches and vegetables or leftovers.

Sunday: Rice, lentil patties, fresh vegetables
Monday: Grilled Cheese sandwiches and Soup
Tuesday: Baked Ziti and lettuce salad
Wednesday: Oven fries, Black bean burgers on fresh rolls
Thursday: Birthday meal - not sure yet what

For the kiddush, I want to bake things earlier in the week.
Sunday - Bake 2 types of cakes
Monday - Bake brownies and cookies
Tuesday - Bake 2 types of cakes
Wednesday - Bake crackers and make chocolate-peanut butter crispy rice cereal squares
Thursday - Bake challah and cook (simply) for Shabbat
Friday - make chumus, egg salad, eggplant salad, etc for kiddush, prep veggies and fruits for veg. and fruit platters... and whatever else needs to be done for the kiddush and Shabbat!

What's going on in your house this week?

Friday, November 6, 2015

New Bus Fare Discounts Coming

Beginning December 1, 2015,  more people will be eligible for bus fare discounts.

The new discounts are (in addition to those previously in place):

FREE transportation for the following groups (with the exception of lines to Eilat):

Soldiers in "Shalat"
Participants in Pre-Army Preparation Programs ("Mechinot")
Volunteers in One-Year Service programs ("Shnat Sherut")
Blind People
Baby Strollers (even when open, at all times of the day)

50% Discount for:

Assistant to a Disabled Person
Teens 18 and under on ALL bus lines

33% Discount on ALL bus and train lines for:

People who carry a Disability Card
People who receive Income Support and other Support from National Insurance 

In addition, public transportation costs in general are coming down!

Combined bus-rail Monthly Passes will cost at least 28% (and up to 42%) less than they do currently
Commuter lines from Tel Aviv to Netanya, Rechovot, and Rishon L'Tzion will all see drastic discounts in the price of monthly passes

Other discounts are expected to phased in over time. 

Many people will save a whole lot of money!
What will YOU do with your savings (if any of these discounts apply to you)?

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Recall - Coca-Cola (Israel)

Coca-Cola (Israel) announced a recall of the following items, due to an undesirable flavor in the product:

1.5 L bottle of Coca Cola with a Best if Used By date of 25.02.16

The company reports that there is no health risk associated with drinking the product, but the flavor is off. Unsold bottles are being removed from store shelves.

Consumers who have purchased the recalled product are asked to call Customer Service at 1-800-587-587 to arrange to return your purchase and receive a replacement.
The hotline will be staffed Sun-Thurs from 8am - 8pm and Fri from 8am - 1pm

Please let your friends know about this recall - share this post!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Frugal Snack: Roasted Chick Peas

Spicy Roast Chick Peas.
Crunchy. Savory. So Satisfying.


And easy. And so frugal, too.
A real crowd-pleaser.
They go SO fast every time I make them!

You'll need:
Chick Peas (already cooked and drained)
olive oil

Preheat Oven to 200 C

Pour cooked chick peas into a large baking pan (I usually make at least 2 cups of chick peas. Add spices to taste - for 2 cups chick peas I use about 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp black pepper, 1-2 tsp granulated garlic, and 1/8 tsp ground turmeric. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Gently mix the whole thing together till well mixed. Adjust the spices to your liking, use whatever combination of spices you like best. My kids like it this way, so that's what I do.

Place pan in oven and roast till everybody is demanding to know what you're making (check on them every so often, I think mine were in the oven about an hour but I'm drawing a blank on the times now! And my oven is cooking slowly right now. I should get that thermostat checked).

Serve when cool enough to eat. Even my pickiest eater literally gobbles them up!

("This is the only way I'll eat chick peas, and if you make them every day I will eat them every day." - picky eater quote.)

Free Sample -- Flexitol!

Flexitol brand creams is offering a free sample right now!
Click this picture to sign up!

All you have to do is fill out the request form on their website on the right hand side of their page - just your name, email, and address and they'll send you your choice of samples (when I signed up the choices were hand cream or foot repair cream).
There's nothing to lose!
(You can always unsubscribe from their emails at a later date)

Enjoy your freebie!