Saturday, February 13, 2010

It's an old idea

0213001158.jpg, originally uploaded by lichen lady.

And it's a trendy thing to do. Unlike most trends, using cash only and not eating out is actually better for your wallet. Doh! Why this concept seems so great to me only so recently I am embarrassed to say. Life has lessons to teach me!

It all started while I had some alone time driving and had NPR on the radio. I caught the end of an interview with a guest that had written a book- something titled like, "The Power to Prosper." What I heard in a nutshell was this- take a 21 day Financial Fast, pay your obligations but buy nothing other than food and medicine and when you buy it, use only cash. Also, and this is big for us- no eating out! I was curious, could I cook for 21 days in a row?

Right away there was a problem: my birthday was coming up! In fact, it was almost birthday season for our family. Birthdays are big. I love them, I didn't want to feel deprived/depriving on them. It just so happened that there was a 21 day break between my and baby dragon's birthdays. With meal planning as my guide, we've made it to day 17 of 21 and it seems like we will make it all the way. I know there are families who do this naturally, but it's been new to us.

Here are a few of the realizations I have made. I like cooking, but I really don't know what it costs to feed our family. Also, when you don't eat out often, you must go grocery shopping more. I found myself fighting the internal urge to reserve food from the kids because I thought they'd eat it up and then I would have to go shopping again. How ridiculous! That's the whole point. We are eating at home, therefore we will use up the food... But I am also glad to have made a few new recipes that I would not have otherwise tried. Other happy notes include using stuff from the freezer such as the salmon Grant caught in Alaska almost 2 years ago, beef soup bones from the farmers marker, and elderberries I picked in Septemeber.

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