I was a little iffy about writing this post since I struggle with an eating disorder and often try to avoid the subject of food, but this topic is definitely worth discussing and I could use some new ideas.
Let me start by reiterating something I’ve learned in recovery – there are no good or bad foods. It’s just important to eat a variety to get what you need. This is something I’m trying to work on, but it’s difficult when money is tight.
Is it even possible to spend less than 200 dollars on your weekly grocery trip anymore? Many weeks we spend more than that.
What’s worse is my husband and I don’t like to cook. I tried so hard to cook after I left treatment, but it’s just not something I’m into. Maybe I’m a little lazy but I don’t like the process or hassle, and I definitely don’t like the pile of dirty dishes after dinner. Sometimes I’ll cook simple things like spaghetti, a roast in the crockpot, or hot dogs. I think one of my favorite simple meals to make is taco salad.
This means my husband and I depend a lot on take-out and delivery. Pizza once a week. We are also familiar faces at the nearby Chinese restaurant and Subway. As much as I want to eat a variety, unfortunately, when we’re struggling, fast food is the cheaper option. I know there’s nothing wrong with eating fast food, but when choices are limited, it can get old pretty quickly.
The price of different foods leaves me flabbergasted. There’s a grocery store next to the office where I work, and I walk over there every day to grab something to drink. I often buy a twenty-four-ounce bottle of Faygo pop for just a dollar, but when I want to switch it up with flavored sparkling water, it comes in a much smaller fancy glass bottle and is nearly three dollars. I don’t understand why water is more expensive than pop and why does it have to come in a fancy bottle? What’s up with that?
Even produce is expensive when we go to Kroger. Bananas and grapes for my daughter’s lunch box. Romaine, basil, carrots, and yellow bell peppers for our two guinea pigs, Nibbles and Nugget. (Have you ever had a guinea pig? They are eating and pooping machines!) Watermelon and sweet corn are definitely family favorites when they’re in season. But why does it cost so much?
It’s no secret that people struggle where we live. In desperate times, my husband and I have had to visit the food pantry at our daughter’s school. The food at the pantry isn’t the most appetizing but it doesn’t matter. You do what you gotta do and I am grateful for their help. This is very common where we live. Even the school’s parent’s page on Facebook lists locations and times of local food pantries. I love this community because maybe we’re struggling, but we also help each other out.
My daughter’s school offers free breakfast, most of the kids qualify for free or reduced school lunches, and after school kids can go to the library a block away from the school and get a free sandwich, fruit, and milk for dinner. The library offers food to every single kid who walks in – no questions asked.
My daughter is a picky eater and we always pack her lunch, and when we can we send her to school with extra food – extra packs of Goldfish and fruit snacks and an extra applesauce – so she can give it to her friends if they want it or need it.
With the cost of food where it is, do you guys have any money-saving tips or very simple, cheap meal ideas to share? I’m sure the real solution is to overthrow the capitalist pigs that run this country, but does anyone have any ideas in the meantime?
A little health update…I am on a new medication and there is now a light at the end of the tunnel. It’s like a fog has been lifted and for the first time in a few weeks, I have a clear head. I am not 100 percent yet, but I’m getting there. I will post more about it soon.