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Day Twenty-two

I spent this morning doing something incredibly frustrating.

I had $18.63 leftover for the final 10 days.

I still have in the fridge: 2 servings of quiche (that reheats very badly, it has the same problem as the pizza crust), a serving of tacos, 2 servings of pork that makes me want to despair anytime I eat it, some frozen vegetables, lima beans, 6 bratwursts, and some ground beef, along with chicken and beef stock, 4 eggs, a small bit of cheese, a little bit of lettuce, and some butter and 2 slices of GF bread.

Combine that with the few pantry items remaining (olive oil, beans, rice) I could probably scrape by until the end. It wouldn't be pretty, though. And I did have $18.63.

So, I consulted all the sale fliers this week and hauled myself all over town via Metro to buy the items I needed at the cheapest price. I spent $18.46 and rounded out my supplies with:

-one organic whole chicken, 4.5 lbs, on sale at Giant for $6.71
-one bag of safeway frozen mixed peppers, $1.59
-organic potatoes, on sale at Giant for $4 for 5 lbs
-butter, $1.00 for two sticks at Giant
-three small onions for $.78 at Safeway
-1 bag of carrots, .99 at Giant
-one dozen Nature's Promise organic eggs for $3.39

That should do me fine until the 25th. Technically, food stamp allottments are good for 30 days; I am doing 32 days, so I would in theory be on target if I spent $213.34 since October 24.

There is still time to use up everything, but I think I am going to have some stuff leftover, which I may deduct from the final monthly total. And some of the pantry stuff I already had will add to my total. I stopped calculating it by day, figuring that I would just make sure to spend less than $200.

There is some food that I purchased that has been "wasted." I use quotes because most of it isn't waste, it's the stuff like the beef that has wheat gluten solution in it, and the flour tortillas and cookie dough and spaghetti and spaghetti sauce. Stuff I donated or gave to friends. Some of it was truly wasted. I am pretty sure I am not going to finish the pork and rice, because it's truly unpleasant and nothing screws up my resolve more than eating food I find revolting. And two of my yogurts were buried behind some other stuff and are past the date by several days now.

So I have learned a couple of things. I didn't waste nearly as much as I probably do most months. I attribute that to planning a menu that was mostly full of dishes I really like, not just things I know I *should* like. No broccoli in this menu. Probably a few too many potatoes, and certainly more cheeseburgers than necessary, although they aren't as bad when they are proper size (4 or 5 to a lb) and have no bun and no cola with them.

I've also learned that even if I gave up now and spent an additional $50 to get me through to Thanksgiving with more of my absolute favorites (really, shouldn't have done all the beef stew at the beginning!), I'd still have spent a good $250-$300 less this month than in my better months before. I am not going to stop now though. I have plenty of food to get me through 10 days easily.

I did not eat everything local, organic, pastured, natural, etc this month and my blood sugar is still doing great and I lost another pound this past week. Don't know what my endrocrine levels look like, though, but if I am losing weight it means they are still decent.

It really is, for me, all about making my food myself. If I make my food myself (therefore controlling what is in it, controlling the sizes better), I can eat cheeseburgers and cinnamon bread (its GF flour, butter, eggs, and sugar, so let's call a spade a spade and say that it is "cake") and pizza when I make it myself and still lose weight.

I am pretty sure that the fact there was no way I could afford much soda on this budget has made a difference, too. Tea and water, plain or for a few days with the lemon peels leftover from the lemon juice for the chicken.

I'd have to go back through the blog, but I think I have had 3 sodas this month (2 diet, one regular) and those were also the days I had an upset stomach and/or felt crappy.

The next challenge may have to be 30-days of non-soda beverages instead. I have been better about choosing diet sodas for a while now, but diet sodas aren't great. Maybe its time to kick the Coca-cola corporation to the curb, permanently.


Food yesterday:
Breakfast: eggs scrambled with red onion
Lunch: Tacos (beef, tomatoes, frozen vegetables, onions) with lettuce, cheese and corn tortilla
Dinner: the rest of the unfortunate GF pizza. Peppers and onions.
Snack: apple

Food today:
Breakfast: eggs, GF toast
Lunch: Quiche (eggs, spinach, cream, ham, cheese, GF crust)
Dinner later: bratwurst with peppers, onions, and rice

Today I am going to make risotto with the chicken stock and last of the asparagus. I am also brining the chicken to roast tomorrow, and roasting some garlic to make mashed potatoes.

I have a back log of photos to share as well.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 14th, 2009 09:36 pm (UTC)
I hate diet cola or any other diet drink fizzy drink except for one - Diet Ginger Beer is great :)

I wasn't sure if it was just me, but my brother has been heard to agree with me, and that doesn't happen very often! For some reason the diet ginger beer I buy - it's the supermarket's own brand - doesn't taste of any of the sweeteners that are used at all.

That's the one for me :)
Nov. 15th, 2009 08:18 pm (UTC)
I haven't been able to keep up with this journal as I really wanted to, but will go through some now to see how it has been going. I think you are great for doing it, and doing so well!

Grats on the weight loss, and also for the realized coorelation between feeling poorly and the pop. Thats a great thing to know. And what an awesome financial savings this month! $250-300--WOW!
Nov. 17th, 2009 02:16 am (UTC)

The financial savings is significant, and it is mostly in the planning and making simpler things, and, of course, not getting a lot of takeout or pre-made stuff. Whole Foods GF bakery can eat up $100 of my budget every month alone if I am not careful.
Nov. 16th, 2009 02:44 pm (UTC)
I'm so curious to see how you'll manage with such a small budget! It would be fascinating to see the cost of convenience vs. the cost of time spent metroing all over town.
Nov. 17th, 2009 02:15 am (UTC)
Yeah, going all over town in order to come in under my $18 and change was really annoying and not terribly efficient. But if I didn't get those items, I was afraid I would wimp out the last few days.
Nov. 16th, 2009 07:07 pm (UTC)
congrats on saving some money and losing weight. I didn't drink soda for a 3 year period and it was great. I still drank juices (lots of sugar in those) and iced tea with sugar added, but when I tried a coke for the first time after the 3 years...I nearly puked! It was like drinking molasses. blech.

Anyways, goodluck.
Nov. 17th, 2009 02:14 am (UTC)
Thanks! Do I know you or are you a random fun person just dropping by? Hello either way!
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )