February 11, 2011

Day 11—Eat from the Pantry Challenge Update

Breakfast—Scrambled eggs with toast

Lunch—PBJ, mandarin oranges, yogurt and chips

Supper—Hubby made homemade whole wheat waffles with organic maple syrup and pb with milk to drink

We didn’t do such a hot job of adding in the fruits and veggies today and will make an effort in the next couple of days to pay attention to bringing those to our meals.  Hubby was kind enough to make supper so that I didn’t have to cook, and one of his specialties is pancakes and waffles.  They were yum!

What did I learn today?

I’m really looking forward to placing some bulk orders with Three Rivers Market next month.  We have already decided to order a case of locally made salsa and maybe a case of locally produced cheese to restock some of our favorite treats.  I think that next month I will have to watch the budget and shopping because there will be an urge to restock everything all at once. 

I hope that this month’s challenge will help me in the future to build our food storage with products that are best for our family.  A few thoughts I’ve had about this:

  • Real food.  The products that I have bought that I’ve been dreading eating are the prepackaged ones--instant potatoes, for example.  Couponing can be intoxicating.  It is so easy to get caught up in the deal and so easy to stock up on a bunch of “stuff” instead of real food. 
  • This summer, we’ll need to preserve even more during the growing season.  It is easier to eat real food when the garden is in full swing and the farmers markets are open.  We ran out of home canned green beans a few weeks ago, the squash is long gone, the last jar of beets are waiting for Easter dinner.  It won’t be until May until we see larger varieties of local foods being available for purchase.  The busy summer months and heat of the kitchen make home canning difficult at times. I need to make a mental snapshot of how much my family appreciates those delicacies in the dreary winter months to motivate me to stick with it. 
  • Perimeter shopping does not have a big budget for advertisement.  Carrots don’t pay for product placement in TV shows.  It is unfortunate that we are seeing so many cartoon characters on foods, and children can point them out in an instant.  Even when our sweet daughter still called Sponge Bob “Cheese” (think about it, he looks like cheese), she knew that he was promoting a product that she “should” like.  Coupons can be the same way.  It is very easy to get caught up in the sales and promotions only to realize that you have a bunch of foods in your pantry that pay for NASCAR races and Super Bowl commercials.  Not that there is anything wrong with either one of those, but what does food have to do with either except in being a money source?  I can intellectualize and say that I use the coupons and deals to counteract the cost of organic and locally grown foods that we buy, but when I really soul search about this subject, I realize how easy it is to buy products that support companies that I might not like or agree with their business practices.

OK, all of that is a little heavy even for me on a Friday night.  I struggle with these subjects from time to time—balancing emergency food storage and supplies with staying on a budget with feeding our family healthy foods with supporting local farmers…  I guess that word balance is really the key, isn’t it?  Doing the best we all can with the resources we have at this time—that’s all we can ask of ourselves or anyone else for that matter.

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