$32 Food “Challenge” Final Thoughts

This is what I had left at the end of my week.

  • 4 cups almond milk
  • 1/2 the pinto beans
  • 1/2 the oatmeal
  • 1/2 the shredded cheese
  • 3/4 the rice
  • 15 tortillas
  • 2 eggs

A pretty good start to a pantry. I wouldn’t have to buy any of this again for the next week (though I would have to stretch the almond milk for the oatmeal a little, but it is possible to make oatmeal with water instead) for a total of $11.30 freed up to go toward other staples or more fresh produce. With that much extra room in the budget, I would definitely be buying more vegetables and perhaps something besides chicken.

First, I want to talk about some of the pros and good things I have taken from this week. I really liked packing oatmeal for breakfast at work. The fresh fruit on top was a highlight to the morning. Of course, I have done this before but gotten out of the habit and it was nice to be reminded of how good it is. I do think I will go back to adding flax seed, chia seeds, or using oats that already have a blend of things in them.

Another big favorite of the week was the sweet potato. I truly enjoyed them every time I ate them, even when it was a simple preparation that I had repeatedly. The sweet potato tacos were delicious, even missing some of what I normally put in them. I’m not sure I want to eat sweet potatoes every day of every week, but they are economical and easy to prepare.

Finally, pressure cooking the dried beans was excellent. I confess I normally buy canned beans because it seems like an acceptable price difference when I have inconsistent results with beans that are too hard when cooking them from dry. The recipe I used to cook the beans in the instant pot allowed me to add flavor to them, cook a large batch at once, and ended up with a really great consistency. Of course, I don’t think this will completely end my use of canned beans, but it does add a cost saving option to my arsenal when I have the time and energy to do so.

Now for a few cons. The biggest drawback is that with such a small budget there is no ability to vary things. The only meat I had for the entire week was chicken. I don’t eat a lot of meat anyway, but that got very boring quickly. I also got tired of eating the same beans repeatedly, and am glad I froze half of them because I can save them for a time when I’m not tired of them before I eat more.

Another big downside to this is that it took a lot of time to cook every day. I did as much preparing beforehand that I thought I could do without increasing the amount of boredom from having the same meals repeatedly. It still meant I cooked at least one meal every day. There were definitely days where I wished I could just make a sandwich or something else easy to throw together in a few minutes and not have to worry.

From a nutritional standpoint, I definitely could have had more calories per day and been fine as far as quantity of food through to the end of the week, but I was just so tired of all of the food that I didn’t want to eat any more of it. I also didn’t have enough vegetables or fruits to keep a healthy diet and I would be more concerned about needing a multivitamin or something to cover some of the things I’m missing if I were eating like this on a regular basis.

Now, finally, do I think this was a doable challenge? Yes, I definitely completed it. Is it a reasonable way to live on a regular basis? No, I don’t think it is for most people. If you’re living on such little money, you might have more than one job trying to make ends meet. That really impinges on how much and when you can cook. You might not be able to take food to work with you because you don’t have anywhere to store it, heat it, etc. In fact, you might not have what you need to cook all of this in your home. A fridge, stove, and oven are all necessary for this. I also used a slow cooker, pressure cooker, rice cooker, and blender, but they are technically optional if you have a stovetop, more time, and didn’t make ill advised oat noodles.

I didn’t calculate the nutritional values beyond the calories, but I am pretty certain it’s lacking in multiple micronutrients and vitamins. Over time it might be possible to vary the fruits and vegetables purchased to cover more bases, but that takes a lot of thought and management to accomplish. There were also some things I did that no person would do in their every day life to make sure I made it through the week. I portioned out my snacks to make sure I got the same amount every day, which takes time, wastes plastic bags, and is definitely not something I ever do in real life. I also only prepared food for myself, not for my husband. Many people are taking care of significant others, children, and/or other family at the same time that would make this much harder.

The good news is that SNAP benefits have recently increased so that people are more able to afford fresh produce and keep up with inflation. The bad news is that food insecurity has increased in the last year. Food prices have gone up, kids were out of school where they might qualify for free meals, food deserts have increased. There are many issues surrounding food and it’s distribution facing the US today.

Once again, if you can afford to donate to a food pantry or even find a local little free pantry to give to it can help people in need in your area. It’s not easy or fun to be on a subsistence level of food purchasing and eating.

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$32 Food “Challenge” Day 7

Last day! I had my other jar of oatmeal with braised pear, and it was just as good again. I even managed to get a picture.

For lunch after work, I quickly microwaved the last two sweet potatoes because I didn’t really have any other idea. Unfortunately, I was so hungry I ate almost all of it before thought about taking a picture, so no evidence. It wasn’t very exciting anyway, I just topped them with a little bit of butter and brown sugar. I thought for sure I’d use of the rest of that brown sugar this week, but I still have a few hard clumps left.

I was hungry pretty quickly after lunch but I had to go out and run some errands. I grabbed my last bag of pretzels and ate them in the car.

For dinner, I executed my last ambitious plan. I used up the last of the carrots and almost all of the chicken (I think I’ll try to make a chicken quesadilla with the small amount remaining) along with all of the stock. I also blitzed some oats in the blender until they were nice and flour-y. Added egg and some oil, then kneaded and let it rest. It seemed kinda like dough until I rolled it out. It was very crumbly, which isn’t unusual for a gluten free pasta. I could only get very small rectangular shapes out of it, so it’s more like a dumpling than a noodle. Once all of the carrots were soft and the chicken was hot, I threw the oat noodles in and cooked for a couple more minutes.

Full honesty, I did not love it. The oat pasta was gummy on the outside and still crumbly and dry inside. The chicken stock already tasted like I’d cooked it too long before I reboiled it with more chicken in it. I don’t think I’m going to be able to eat the leftovers, which amounts to at least another serving. If I only had $32 to eat food every week, I’m not sure I could afford to waste the leftovers. It can be hard to take risks when you know you’re going to have to eat it no matter what.

Once again, there are not a lot of calories in this day. I’m going to eat an applesauce in a little bit, the last one, and that will be the end of my day. I’ll follow up soon with what was left over and some final thoughts on this challenge.

Day 7 Sunday
BreakfastCostCalories
1/2 C oatmeal0.08150
1 c almond milk0.2230
Pear0.5074
(brown sugar)
(pumpkin pie spice)
Subtotal0.81254
Snack
Applesauce0.23100
Pretzels0.19251
Subtotal0.42351
Lunch
Sweet Potato0.47219
Subtotal0.47219
Dinner
Chicken0.07140
Oats0.08150
Egg0.1170
Chicken Stock0.01172
Carrot0.50120.00
Subtotal0.28532
Day’s Total1.971356

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$32 Food “Challenge” Day 6

Breakfast was oatmeal and one of the poached pears. It was delicious! Easily my favorite breakfast of the week, and I’m glad I have another one for tomorrow morning. I’m going to have to remember this because I want to make this even after the challenge is over. The picture doesn’t do it justice, it’s way more appetizing than it looks.

I got home a little late because work was very busy and I was hungry, so I ate all of my pretzels for the day with another pear. Then, I strained my chicken stock. I have enough for both of the ideas I had for it.

I actually strained it a little more after this picture, and skimmed off the fat. For dinner today I made egg drop soup. It’s pretty easy to make. I just used some chicken stock, added some salt, pepper, cornstarch, powdered ginger, and garlic. Heat it up until it’s simmering, and whisk up two eggs while waiting for that. Once it’s hot but not boiling, stir in a circle until it’s got a little whirlpool going, then slowly drizzle in the egg to make beautiful ribbons of egg.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture. It was okay. I think I cooked the chicken stock a little bit too long, but it was passable as food. I didn’t get a lot of calories today, because I didn’t eat a real lunch. To try to make up for that I’m going to have a little snack of two of the remaining carrots and an applesauce. Tomorrow is my last day, and I’m going to be using up most of the rest of my fresh ingredients, as well as trying to make a version of chicken noodle soup. For now, I’m going to go to sleep after my snack because I’m very tired.

Day 6 Saturday
BreakfastCostCalories
1/2 C oatmeal0.08150
1 c almond milk0.2230
Pear0.5074
(brown sugar)
(pumpkin pie spice)
Subtotal0.81254
Snack
Applesauce0.23100
Carrots0.50120
Subtotal0.73220.00
Lunch
Pretzels0.19251
Pear0.5074
Subtotal0.69325
Dinner
Egg0.23140.00
Chicken Stock0.00172
Subtotal0.23312
Day’s Total2.451111
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$32 Food “Challenge” Day 5

Guess what. I forgot to take a picture of my oatmeal again. Despite thinking about it as I was taking it out of the microwave at work. My memory is great, lemme tell you. So here’s a familiar picture for you. Technically this is the jar I ate today, so let’s pretend this counts. Also, I ate my pretzel snack the second I got home because I was hungry and lunch was delayed by needing to cook more rice.

For lunch I cooked a new batch of rice, fried two eggs, and warmed up the leftovers I saved from Wednesday. This was a pretty darn good lunch. I am still surprised I didn’t get tired of it during all this. I am tired of cooking though. It’s a pain in the butt to have to cook something almost every meal. I thought about preparing more meals completely beforehand, but I know I don’t love that either. Once again I miss being able to have a simple sandwich for lunch or dinner, especially on Fridays when a peanut butter & jelly sandwich is a great and easy meatless option.

I also started the chicken stock. I saved the carcass and all the carrot tops/bottoms/peels I’ve made so far. I also peeled the remaining couple carrots so I wouldn’t have to later and I could throw them in here to extract all their nutrients and flavors. I decided I’m just going to let it cook in the crock pot until I get home from work tomorrow. I have exciting plans for it.

Finally for dinner I had sweet potato tacos substituting my pinto beans for the normal black beans and omitting the corn and lime sour cream. I couldn’t figure out any kind of good substitute, so I just left them out. Even though I have some in the freezer. That’s how committed I am to this little week long project. It isn’t actually that much of an imposition, they taste great anyway. After I digest this a little, I’m going to have an applesauce cup for dessert again.

While I was cooking dinner I also prepared breakfast for Saturday and Sunday. Oatmeal, but this time I “braised” a couple of pears in water (since that’s all I really have, sadly) and threw in a little brown sugar at the end to make them more syrupy. I added a little pumpkin pie spice to make it taste extra nice, and I’m looking forward to trying it in the morning.

As of today, I have eaten all of the raspberries and mushrooms. There are only what can charitably be called four (and really more like three since two are quite stubby) carrots left. There’s also only two small sweet potatoes left. I have enough applesauce for each day, and somehow two pears (I thought I’d eat them first since I love pears). I can tell I’m going to have a ton of oats, rice, eggs, and at least half the container of cheese left. I currently have the other half of the beans and chicken in the freezer for the weekend. I have an ambitious plan for dinner one of the days, and absolutely no idea for the other.

Day 5 Friday
BreakfastCostCalories
1/2 C oatmeal0.08150
1 c almond milk0.2230
raspberries0.7630
(brown sugar)
(pumpkin pie spice)
Subtotal1.07210
Snack
Applesauce0.23100
Pretzels0.19251
Subtotal0.42351
Lunch
Carrot (2 qty)0.50120
Mushroom (1/4 pack)0.2513
Rice0.08213
Egg0.23140
Subtotal1.06487
Dinner
Sweet Potato0.47219
Beans0.06135
Tortillas0.12150
Subtotal0.64504
Day’s Total3.191551
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$32 Food “Challenge” Day 4

It finally happened. I forgot to take a picture. Luckily today’s breakfast is the same as tomorrows, so I took a picture of the one still in my fridge. Just in case you were disappointed. It was fine, and I also had an applesauce cup with it.

I did get a lovely surprise today. A coworker gave me a couple of chocolate covered peanut butter cookies as a small Christmas present. Let me tell you, they were beautiful and had adorable little sprinkles on them and I ate them so fast. I didn’t take a picture of them either. I don’t know if it’s my recent lack of sugary snacks, but it was absolutely the most delicious thing.

For lunch when I got home I had the rest of the chicken fried rice in the fridge. Very glad I didn’t have to cook lunch. This plan really has a lot of cooking in it, and I miss being able to just make a sandwich or have a simple salad for lunch without a lot of fuss. Also, I was planning on setting up the chicken stock in the crock pot so that I could strain it out right before bed, but I completely forgot! It’s okay, I didn’t need it tomorrow because I won’t be eating meat, but I will have to remember tomorrow or I’ll be missing out on Saturday’s dinner plan.

I was really not enthusiastic about any more beans today, so instead I made ranch chicken. At least, I attempted to. I mixed some ranch seasoning powder with a tiny bit of the almond milk and tossed about a cup of the remaining chicken in it. Slapped that on some tortillas with some cheese and a microwaved sweet potato. Two bad things about it, though. One, the ranch powder wasn’t strong enough to overcome the roasted chicken flavor, and I didn’t want to put more in in fear of making it too ranch flavored. Two, the sweet potato had a pretty large bad spot in it for how big the whole potato was. I scooped it out and ate the rest, but it was not as much potato as I was hoping for.

After dinner I watched a movie with my husband and ate a pear as well as my daily pretzels. I will say I miss eating dinner with him, as in the same dinner together at the same time. Earlier in the week we had different food at the same time, but there’s something to the shared dinner experience I miss. Good thing this challenge is only a week.

Looking at my calories, this is the largest calorie day. I think I mostly achieved that by eating more chicken, as it was in lunch and dinner. Plus I had three snack items instead of two. Also, this doesn’t take into account my coworker’s gift, so it’s definitely the highest even if I can’t exactly calculate those calories. I haven’t been particularly hungry today, but I do still really crave sugary treats and I’m beginning to want bread as well. Tortillas are great, but soft fluffy bread is on another level. I’m really interested in seeing how tomorrow’s calories come out since I won’t be having any meat at all.

Day 4 Thursday
BreakfastCostCalories
1/2 C oatmeal0.08150
1 c almond milk0.2230
raspberries0.7630
(brown sugar)
(pumpkin pie spice)
Subtotal1.07210
Snack
Pear0.5074
Applesauce0.23100
Pretzels0.19251
Subtotal0.92425
Lunch
Chicken0.2355.5
Carrots0.2560
Mushrooms0.136.5
Egg0.0635
Rice0.08213
(ginger)
(garlic)
(soy sauce)
Subtotal0.74370
Dinner
1 cup Chicken0.89221
3 Tortillas0.12150
1/4 cup Cheese0.16110
Sweet Potato0.42195
Subtotal1.60676
Day’s Total4.321681
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$32 Food “Challenge” Day 3

I woke up quite hungry! Not surprising after yesterday. I thought about making some oatmeal immediately, but this is the last day I’ll be home for breakfast so I decided to try a little harder. I boiled an egg, and it was a little less done than I intended but was delicious. I also cut up a sweet potato, steamed it in the microwave for a couple minutes, then threw it in the oven to crisp up the outside. I topped it with some cheese because I have a lot of cheese and it adds a little more bulk. I intended to have a pear as well, but I was pretty full after eating this. It can be an afternoon snack instead.

For lunch, I made chicken fried rice. I cooked the rest of the mushrooms today. They needed it, they were going to go bad if I left them any longer. I cooked up 4 more carrots with the mushrooms just like on Monday, and put half away for Friday. The rest combined with some rice, a scrambled egg, and some chicken as well as garlic, ginger, and soy sauce from my pantry. I split it into two so I don’t have to cook lunch tomorrow.

Now, why do I need to save something for Friday? I don’t eat meat on Fridays and my options this week are quite limited so I want to make sure I have everything I need to succeed. My plan is oatmeal, the carrot/mushroom/rice bowl, and sweet potato tacos. I usually make sweet potato tacos with black beans and corn, but pinto will be fine. Where I’m really struggling is that I normally also put lime crema on top, which really makes the tacos. I don’t see any option to replace that, so I might end up disappointed. We shall see. Luckily, I really love sweet potatoes so I know it will be edible no matter what.

Dinner will look very familiar. I made chicken and bean tacos again. There are 4 in this picture because I was trying to eat more after how hungry I ended up yesterday, but the calories only reflect 3 because I ended up giving the 4th to my husband. I just couldn’t eat it, I was too full. Before bed, I’m going to eat an applesauce as my dessert and I’m really looking forward to it.

While dinner was warming up, I also prepped 2 mason jars with oatmeal, almond milk, raspberries, brown sugar, and pumpkin pie spice for the next two mornings. After that, I have a plan involving a few of the remaining pears that I hope goes well.

Day 3 Wednesday
BreakfastCostCalories
Egg0.1170
Sweet Potato0.42195
Cheese0.0855
(mayo)
(whole grain mustard)
Subtotal0.61320
Snack
Pear0.5074
Applesauce0.23100
Pretzels0.19251
Subtotal0.92425
Lunch
Chicken0.2355.5
Carrots0.2560
Mushrooms0.136.5
Egg0.0635
Rice0.08213
(ginger)
(garlic)
(soy sauce)
Subtotal0.74370
Dinner
3/4 cup Chicken0.67166
3/4 cup Beans0.09202
3 Tortillas0.12150
1/4 cup Cheese0.16110
Subtotal0.76368
Day’s Total3.021483
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$32 Food “Challenge” Day 2

For breakfast I decided to try something besides oatmeal because while I’m at work Thursday-Monday that will be what I pack to eat while I’m there. I make breakfast tacos a couple times a month, but this week there’s no sausage or hashbrowns to bulk it up. I did use some of the leftover bean juice to help give the eggs some flavor, but I was left a little disappointed just because it’s a less flavorful version of something I usually make. I also grabbed a pear to complete the meal. Looking at my spreadsheet, this breakfast had more calories than the oatmeal, and I definitely feel more satiated and full than after yesterday’s breakfast.

Lunch was easy since I cooked it yesterday! I just warmed it up in the tupperware and called it good to go. It saves in the fridge pretty well, so it tasted just as good as yesterday.

Finally, dinner. Since I have 30 tortillas, I can use 5 a day for the rest of the week. I measured 1/4 cup each chicken and beans per taco, and seasoned the shredded chicken with some dried guajillo, garlic salt, and pepper. After I took the picture I ended up putting in about a spoonful of beans to each taco and ate the rest out of the bowl because more wouldn’t fit. I will say these tortillas are not bad, exactly, but they are not as good as the ones I normally buy, and are a little smaller as well. On the whole I liked it, which is good because this is going to be dinner a couple more times.

Overall I have been hungrier more often today than yesterday, and looking at my overall calorie count shows that I really did not stuff enough food into today. I also told my husband at least a couple times that I miss sugar. I know it’s not exactly great for you, but I am very much a sweet snack sort of person. I am trying to skip an applesauce today because I only got six, but I’m really eyeballing it every time I walk by the kitchen. I know I could eat more per meal (just check out that cost for the whole day!), but the serving sizes feel a lot like what I would normally eat. They have fewer ingredients and fewer vegetables to help bulk everything out.

Tomorrow I will have to do more cooking than today. I also have to sort out a small problem I have regarding Friday, but more on that then!

Day 2 Tuesday
BreakfastCostCalories
2 Tortillas0.08100
2 Eggs0.23140
Cheese0.0855
Bean juice
Pear0.5074
Subtotal0.89369
Snack
Pretzels0.19251
Subtotal0.19251
Lunch
Carrot (2 qty)0.50120
Mushroom (1/4 pack)0.2513
Rice0.08213
Subtotal0.83346
Dinner
3/4 cup Chicken0.67166
3/4 cup Beans0.09202
3 Tortillas0.12150
1/4 cup Cheese0.16110
Subtotal0.76368
Day’s Total2.661333
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$32 Food “Challenge”

I am fortunate enough to be able to have a generous food budget in general. Recently, however, I have had to dip into the emergency savings to take care of a broken tree branch impeding a power line, a busted sewer pipe that had to be completely replaced, and a broken car door latch. Luckily, the emergency fund can handle all of this (barely!) but to recover some of the funding, I’ve decided to try to crack down on some expenses for a while. My husband didn’t want to be limited to $32, but he is thrilled that this week he gets to eat hot dogs and spicy beef tacos to his heart’s content so he’s all set to eat separately for once.

I’m no stranger to this “$32 SNAP Challenge” that went around a while ago, and have watched a lot of Youtube videos on this and other similar restricted food budget challenges. One particularly illuminating and instructive is Budget Eats with June Xie from Delish. She does some absolutely amazing things with some very interesting ingredients.

I chose ALDI to shop at, both because I knew they would be a great cheap option and because I personally do not shop at a certain ubiquitous blue supercenter. I have a lot of pantry items and considered looking at prices at ALDI and then substituting some of them, but I thought that might get too complicated and I really wanted to see how much I could buy and how much would be left over afterward. Also, I didn’t go in with much of a plan for what I was going to buy because I realized if I didn’t start this week, I’d have to delay until after Christmas at least so I went as soon as ALDI opened Monday morning to pick things out.

This is what I ended up with!

Price Breakdown:

2 lbs Organic Pears3.49
2 lbs Carrots1.49
3 lbs Sweet Potatoes2.49
1 lb Pretzels1.32
8 oz Mushroom0.99
2 lbs 10 oz Quick Oats2.45
8 cups Almond Milk1.79
6 oz Raspberries2.29
6 Applesauce cups1.39
1 lb Cheddar2.59
1 Dozen Eggs1.37
3 lbs Rice1.89
6 lb Whole Chicken5.82
30 Tortillas1.19
2 lbs Pinto Beans1.39
Total31.95

I got it all home and immediately made some oatmeal because I was starving. Now, I am going to be using a few things in my pantry because it seemed incredibly silly to buy more spices and oil when I have so much at home. I’m also going to be using up some remaining and quickly hardening brown sugar for my oatmeal and some very recently expired stick butter I found in the back of the fridge. I hope that doesn’t count as cheating too badly. This oatmeal has the aforementioned brown sugar from the pantry, as well as some pumpkin pie spice. It was pretty good, but I regret buying the unsweetened Almond milk instead of the vanilla since this is the only thing I’m planning on using it for. Oh well, I’ll know better if I do this again!

After breakfast, I went through and found serving sizes, calorie information, and made some general plans for my week. I decided I needed to prep the beans and the chicken today as well in order to have it available for the rest of the week. I also divided the pretzels into 7 zipper bags so I wouldn’t mindlessly snack my way through them too fast.

Thanks to my pressure cooker, the beans don’t even need to soak before cooking. I just dumped the whole bag of beans, 10 cups of water, some minced garlic from my fridge (it’s a huge jar from Costco, there’s no way I’m going to buy more garlic with that in my house) and cooked on high for 50 minutes with a 15 minute natural release afterward. Next time I’d let it lose pressure for a little longer, as it was I had to cover the spout with a towel because it was releasing too much actual water along with the steam because it was close to maximum capacity. I added some salt, dried garlic powder, onion powder, dried guajillo, and a little cumin. I put about half into a container for the fridge, and the rest into a freezer bag for the second part of the week. I also had a small mason jar of just, well, bean juice left over. If watching Budget Eats has taught me anything, you save everything because you never know when you might need it.

While that was cooking, I also made my lunch for today and tomorrow. Fried mushrooms and carrots over rice. Sounds very plain, but is actually very good. The mushrooms give some wonderful umami, the carrots are a little sweet once cooked, and the oil gives some needed fat to the recipe. I used to make this right after I graduated college, so it has some nostalgia to it as well.

After this was a short break from food prepping! Of course, I couldn’t leave it for too long because I had to cook a whole chicken, and a 6 lb one at that. I kept the seasoning simple because I want it to have a couple of different uses if needed. Just salt, pepper, and butter underneath the skin and in the body cavity. I decided to really spoil myself this first night because it seemed a shame to have this whole chicken and not have some as is before shredding the rest. I also baked a sweet potato with the chicken for a yummy side and spread some of the butter and brown sugar on it to finish it off. It did feel a little weird to not have a green or vegetable, but I’m working with what I got from ALDI for the week and there wasn’t room for anything else in the budget.

After that, I got to shred the rest of the bird. There was still quite a bit of meat on it, even missing a leg and thigh. I like to think it’s posing in this picture. It’s trying to be appetizing.

I split that as well, half in the fridge and half in the freezer. I also saved the carcass, along with the carrot ends and peelings. Once again, save everything because you never know what you might be able to use later. Of course, I know I’m going to be using this to make chicken stock in a day or two and very much looking forward to it.

I have compiled the cost and estimated calories for each item, meal, and the whole day. It looks like I only ate around 1500 calories today. I don’t feel particularly hungry, so it seems to be okay so far. I will admit while I was trying to figure out how much to put in the fridge and how much to freeze for the second half of the week I had a difficult time knowing how much food is needed for a whole week. I find myself worrying if I’ll have enough food for the whole week or if I’ve eaten too much today to sustain the rest of the week. Given I haven’t touched the beans (though I did cook them today), tortillas, pears, or eggs yet I don’t think this worry is justified.

It makes me think about people who genuinely only have $32 (or even less) to stretch over a week and how much time and energy they must spend on thinking about where their next meal will come from. This stress will radiate into the rest of their life and change choices in ways I can’t imagine. It makes me continue to feel lucky to be able to do this as a way to help replenish my emergency fund rather than as my only means of sustenance.

It also takes a lot of time to do all of this food preparation. I’ve been aided by an instant pot and rice cooker, though it is possible to do all of this just with a stovetop and oven. There are also a lot of dishes to do. All of this takes time that someone working multiple jobs to make ends meet or someone who might have mobility issues would struggle with.

Please consider a donation to your local food pantry or even seek out a neighborhood little free pantry if you can.

Day 1: Monday
BreakfastCostCalories
1/2 C oatmeal0.08150
1 c almond milk0.2230
raspberries0.7630
(brown sugar)
(pumpkin pie spice)
Subtotal1.07210
Snack
Applesauce0.23100
Pretzels0.19251
Subtotal0.42351
Lunch
Carrot (2 qty)0.50120
Mushroom (1/4 pack)0.2513
Rice0.08213
Subtotal0.83347
Dinner
Chicken leg quarter1.46360
Baked sweet potato0.50236
(brown sugar)
(butter)
Subtotal1.96596
Day’s Total4.281504

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Simple Check Pattern Version II: Four-Stitch Check

IMG_2078 (1024x938)

Yarn: Sugar n Creme
Needles: US 7, 4.5 mm
Gauge: 20 sts/4 inches
Pattern: Simple Check Pattern Version II: Four-Stitch Check
Stitch Count Repeat:  6 sts
Book: A Treasury of Knitting Patterns
Page: 52

Knit by: Watrpriestess

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Stripe and Rib

IMG_2102 (1024x992) 

Yarn: Sugar n Creme
Needles: US 7, 4.5 mm
Gauge: 20 sts/ 4 inches
Pattern: Stripe and Rib
Stitch Count Repeat: 4 sts
Book: A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns
Page: 44

Knit by: Watrpriestess

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment