March Guest Cook: Heather’s Meatloaf by Jackie

I was blog surfing a few weeks ago looking for freezer meal ideas when I came across The Funky Freezer Girls and their leader Jackie Wheeler.  As I learned more about their group and its mission, I got really excited and knew that I had to have her as a Guest!  She happily accepted which thrilled me.  As I do with my monthly cooks I asked her a few fun questions.

Jackie’s Favorites
Movie:Princess BrideDessert:Anything ChocolateVacation Spot:toss up between Paris and TuscanyHobby:Need to work on finding one again. But I love to dance.Your claim to fame:Seems at the moment to be Founder and Chief Steward to Funky Freezer GirlsIf I got to spend 1 month on a beautiful tropical island all by myself, what 3 things would I take with me: My BeautiControl travel bag, plenty of magazines & books (especially my Bible), and my IPhone so I could record, journal and photograph my experience.(Provided all the necessities have been taken care of.) 
Her website/Facebook: www.thejackiestyle.com   www.facebook.com/thejackiestyleThrough Jackie’s own words you can learn more about freezer cooking:“I’m married to a great guy who has an off schedule and am the mommy of two wonderful, crazy little boys (5 and 1), AND have my own home base business. I tell you this so you know where I am coming from and what having freezer meals available to me means.

Last year I found myself in a difficult place in providing quality meals for my family in a timely manner and without going crazy. My husband works nights and is not available to wrangle boys while I prepare our meals. While I had the desire to make things from scratch it just wasn’t happening unless hubby was home. The other challenge was most recipes called for a 13 x 9 pan. This is just too much food for my little family. We would either get REALLY sick of it or it was wasted because it went bad before we could finish it.
I had been praying about how I could “do a better job” when I had two “aha” moments occur fairly close together. One, a friend of mine (Heidi) brought to my attention that I could prepare a recipe calling for 13 X 9 pan meals into two 8 X 8’s (don’t do the math, it just works). Make the first one and freeze the second one. BRILLIANT!! I started doing that on the days my hubby was home to wrangle boys and found some relief for our dinner dilemma. I also started reading themoneysavingmom.com blog. I noticed a post about a freezer cooking day and it peaked my interest. I read all about it and felt very overwhelmed by the concept of doing a month’s worth of meals for my family in one day. My youngest was about 4 months and I was just not up for it. The concept just kept nagging at me.
Then my second “aha” occurred when I decided that I could shop for and make the same meal all at one time. I just needed to find a few friends that would like to exchange those meals with me. (next week read how Jackie organized her first meal group.)
I have to say that since Funky Freezer Girls has started I have eaten more meals I would not normally choose. And the bonus of that is I have really enjoyed them. One such meal has been meatloaf. I am not the biggest fan. My mom says it’s because she makes a bad meatloaf and that has been my “example” for all these years. So when we got meatloaf the first time I was a little sad. Wanting to be a good example to my kids I made it and ate it. I have since decided I like (this) meatloaf. Hope you like it too.”
“Heather’s Meatloaf” 
Member recipe: Jesse Moore (Heather’s friend)
Serves: 8   Prep time: 30 minutes
Ingredients:
1 lb ground beef 93% lean
1 chub jimmy dean spicy sausage
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 egg
1/2-1 cup bread crumbs

Instructions:
Mix together all ingredients and place in loaf pan either freeze or bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
**** Optional: Mix 1/2 cup ketchup and 1/2 cup of brown sugar (or use favorite bbq sauce) and spread on top of meatloaf.

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