Poor mamas: How well do you guys really eat?? - Mothering Forums

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Old 07-22-2007, 02:03 AM - Thread Starter
 
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so i'm skimming posts and noticing that a lot of ppl here supposedly buy mostly organic food, worry about additives and processed foods, etc....and i'm thinking, well, these mamas must be better off than us.

i mean seriously, i don't have the money to care that there's beef broth and msg in the ramen packs. if i'm buying fresh fruit, i have to buy what's on special, not whatever catches my fancy and certainly not only what's organic. i mean, distilled purified water costs like $1.12 a gallon, while i can get an off-brand 2Liter of soda for 50 cents. sadly, we opt for the soda.

now, admittedly we are in a very tight situation, and it won't be this way forever--but i just feel like these other mamas who are "allowed" to care about the quality of their food/diet are in a separate reality from ours. anyone else feel similar??

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Old 07-22-2007, 02:09 AM
 
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Whole foods are much cheaper than processed junk. We cannot afford organic, but we eat pretty well on a VERY small grocery budget (around $30/week).

For instance, I can make homemade noodles with herbs just as cheap as Ramen packs are, and they taste SO much better.

Dawn, mama to D (3.06) & N (9.07) C (11.09) & Still-in-shock surprise due in Aug!
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Old 07-22-2007, 02:12 AM
 
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We can rarely buy organic - it's just not in the budget.

We do buy local meat that is raised humanely and without extra chemicals, etc.

We grow a large garden and are slowly adding berry bushes (added in blueberries and raspberries this year). All of our production is organic.

I cook from scratch most of the time and buy minimally processed food for the most part. It's cheaper and less likely to be filled with preservatives and additives.

I'm a label reader and have been avoiding artificial colors, additives, and preservatives. I prefer not to have to read the labels and a simple solution to that is to buy the food as close to whole as I can get it.

I think we eat very well - nutritionally it's superior to most of our peers - but it does look very different from most of our neighbors (not MDC folk, just regular folk).

ETA: I don't know if it's an option for your family, but we were searching for a better alternative to bottled purified water and bought a Big Berkey water purifier system. It was a large up-front cost, but now we aren't buying little plastic bottles full of water. We just have to replace filters every 15,000 gallons.
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Old 07-22-2007, 02:51 AM
 
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good topic!
We are low income and have three school aged boys. We have some food issues and so we avoid corn syrup and food coloring. I avoid partially hydrogenated stuff as much as possible. I can't have msg because it gives me migraines.
We are fortunate in that we have good outlet stores that carry a lot of natural or organic brands for really cheap/ For instance, I stoked up on the big sized cans of organic and diced tomatoes for 79 cents each this week. We also have a bread outlet where we can get good bread for a pretty good price. We cannot stick to organic at all though.
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Old 07-22-2007, 02:57 AM
 
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Old 07-22-2007, 03:21 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Krystal323 View Post
so i'm skimming posts and noticing that a lot of ppl here supposedly buy mostly organic food, worry about additives and processed foods, etc....and i'm thinking, well, these mamas must be better off than us.
People tend to speak more about what they would like to do for themselves than what they actually do.

I think people should make an effort to eat the best food possible, of course. But human bodies are fairly remarkable in their ability to survive for 7 or 8 decades off of less than ideal food. A few preservatives and FDC yellow dye number 5 aren't going to kill you if you eat them on occasion. The effort and expense I see a lot of people go through to be completely "natural" almost defeats the benefit of living at all. It is not a sin to partake of the occasional modern convenience and you're not a bad parent if you let your kid eat a Twinkee once in a month.

There is almost an "I'm more natural than thou" attitude among some people, but you get used to it. :

By the way, you can usually refill gallon jugs with water for $0.50. Most grocery stores have a machine out front for that. It's better than soda.

There is no mystery why Americans are fatter than the rest of the world. It is because healthy food is expensive. But as long as you keep an active lifestyle, you do not need to be in poor health just because your food comes from a factory instead of a farm. You shouldn't feel guilty about not buying organic.
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Old 07-22-2007, 03:27 AM
 
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I wouldn't say we're poor, but I do try hard to keep our grocery bill as low as possible, and that works best when we stick to the basics. Our 3 most common cheap dinners are scrambled eggs (or French toast if I have the time and inclination), pasta with tomato sauce (sometimes jarred, sometimes homemade, but rarely do we have meat in the sauce), and bean and cheese burritos. We eat at least 2 of those 3 every week, and when it's tight, we have all 3. During the winters, I'll also make a big pot of bean soup with a smoked hamhock; I think the whole pot costs me less than $4 to make, and it usually is enough for 3-4 dinners. This week, I'm making chili with a mere 1/2 pound of ground beef but tons of beans to round things out, and that's cheap, too. We'll have Jiffy cornbread ($0.33/box) on the side.

I think that being able to cook or bake from scratch is the biggest key to it all. We stick to our budget way better when I have the time and foresight to plan what I'll cook and when for the week.
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Old 07-22-2007, 03:29 AM
 
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We try to buy organic, but mostly just try to buy cheap. we do make one sacrifice and that is the only milk we will use is the most expensive, its not organic, but its hormone and antibiotic free and comes in glass returnable bottles.

I use coupons, and shop sales, drink tap water, we try and eat more fresh foods rather than processed or canned. But when its tight, its tight, and the food we get from the food banks is definatly not organic, but we still use it.
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:11 AM
 
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today at Whole Foods I got appx. $75 of groceriecs for $.97 ! Yeah-that wasn't a mistype- $.97.

The way I did this was use $3.00 off coupons on cat and dog food that were less than $3.00 (these coupons are in the FREE mambo sprouts coupon books in the front of the store) So, for each coupon I used, I earned $. (BTW, i don't even own any cats or dogs. i am just giving it away)

We definately don't have much money after we pay the bills, but I am determined to eat Organic and most of the time I can find stuff on sale and add coupons to that and voila.

This past week a bag of organic potatoes was $1.25 at Kroger. I bought about 5 bags since I knew that was a good price.

For chicken and beef that is from naturally raised animals, I look for the meat that is about to expire and if there are several packs, I stock up and freeze them. Last week I got about 4 packs of chicker that were originally over $8 and onsale for about $4 because the date was about to run out.

It is harder to find good deals sometimes, especially depending on where you live. Just start looking really hard for good deals and try to combine them w/ coupons. (you can get a lot of coupons online)

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Old 07-22-2007, 12:37 PM
 
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I focus on organic dairy, meats and fats, and then using sparingly. I look for local fresh produce and it's not nearly as pricey as buying organic produce in the stores. We are spending quite a bit right now due to trying to figure out a few food intolerances, but we range about $60 a week.
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Old 07-22-2007, 12:44 PM
 
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We don't buy organic but I think we do well.

Unassisted birthing, atheist, poly, bi WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids Wes (14) Seth (7) Pandora Moonlilly (2) and Nevermore Stargazer (11/2012)  Married to awesome SAH DH.

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Old 07-22-2007, 01:06 PM
 
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I eat a meal every couple of days. The rest of the time I try to snack a bit here and there. However, we can rarely afford to actually grocery shop and I have to justify the $3.00 that goes to a gallon of milk.

The kids eat whatever we have access to. Usually it's something resembling hotdogs and Kraft Dinner.

When we got food stamps we ate *well*. I was able to choose healthy fresh foods and purchase local and/or organic when it mattered to me. Now we eat what we get from the food pantry.

I know that this is a temp situation, come Sept when the student loans come in, we'll have a bit more breathing room.

I am in awe of those to seem to manage to eat well despite being poor. In my area, it's not feasable. The nearest co-op type place is an hour away one way. The nearest farmer's market (non-organic but mostly local) is 20 minutes one way. The nearest affordable grocery is 10-15 minutes one way. The closest grocery is expensive for everything but meat. When we can afford fresh meat, we go there. Otherwise, we do without.
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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yeah, i think having the forethought and talent for scratch-cooking helps a lot. i am a pretty lousy cook, and i totally don't have enough kitchen stuff right now sometimes i wash the same pot 4 times in one day :

i disagree on this: i think it takes more money to eat healthier, not less. then again, i am not willing nor able to go making my own noodles, or growing a veggie garden (i would but i live in a 2nd story apartment!)...

my dp grew up with not a lot of $$ and he's very skilled at "making something out of nothing", but i can't expect him to make dinner everynight on top of working 50+ hours a week, yk? one thing he makes for us that is cheap is homemade pizza. it tastes awesome, but jeez it's a lot of effort IMO: making the sauce, mixing the dough, then cleaning the flour-ey countertop and washing the dough-bowl :

we've been waiting for weeks and weeks to get our foodstamps approved (they keep giving me the run-around, if you keep up with the poor families support thread, you'll know ), and in the meantime every dollar we make goes to buy the bare-minimum of food. i am thoroughly sick of it

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Old 07-22-2007, 04:13 PM
 
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You need to do what is within your budget. We don't buy alot of organic because there isn't alot available here. I have my own garden. We don't buy any beef as my parents give us some of theirs that they butcher for free, so we buy chicken & some pork. We're not big fish people. We don't do alot of processed food, but we do some.

Quote:
i mean, distilled purified water costs like $1.12 a gallon, while i can get an off-brand 2Liter of soda for 50 cents. sadly, we opt for the soda.
this really stood out to me though. You are paying 1.00 for 1 gallon of pop vs $1.12 for 1 gallon of water. Since soda doesn't actually quench thirst or hydrate I"d guess you are going through more soda then you would water. I'd find a way to spend the extra $.12 & opt for the water. We buy culligan water, 5 gallons is $5.49. We do not get it delivered & we do know that if we went to the actual Culligan place we'd get it for about $3 or $4/5 gallons.
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:14 PM
 
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We rarely buy organic. If it is a good price then I will but it is not the norm. I do buy most of my food from local growers and farmers markets. But I live in farm country so for us it is cheaper to buy this way. We eat VERY WELL. I do not stress over the lack of organics in our diet. I am putting balanced meals on the table and that makes me happy.

Honestly for me, "I" feel guilty eating "high on the hog" (as my sweet grandma would say) while others are going without. I am not saying that others should feel that way but I do. So while I am teaching my children about good nutrition, I want them to think about others as well.
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:22 PM
 
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I like to use my crockpot for simple meals. Beans are much cheaper when you buy them dry, soak them and cook them in the crockpot. You can freeze them after cooking too. I make my bread and baked goods from scratch. Pizza too! To me, the mess is worth it. Baking is very easy if you keep the basic ingredients on hand. Flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, baking powder,vanilla, yeast, brown sugar, cornmeal. With these ingredients I can make almost anything. Cocoa if you need chocolate . Oats are great for baking and breakfast. I always see bread machines and crockpots at Goodwill for only a few dollars. I got a yogurt maker for 4.00. If you are going to truly save money on groceries, you are going to have to do some work. If you are not employed outside of your home, feeding your family is a main part of your job. If your partner/spouse/significant other is working, you should be working the same amount of hours at home and that involves food prep. Get some cookbooks from the library. If you can even buy one item in bulk, do it. Look for the loss leaders in supermarkets and only buy that. We have a very nice grocery store in our area that has good specials every week. However, if I buy anything other than the specials it is at a primo price. Much higher than Wal-Mart. My farmer's market was about 20 min. away, but I could get a bushel of tomatoes for 5.00 and can them. Or apples for applesauce. Or a box of cabbage for 7.00. If it is too much for your family to eat, think about who you could split with. Most other moms would be glad for inexpensive produce.
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:26 PM
 
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Tap water, even with the expense of Brita filters, is much, much cheaper than any kind of soda. A huge bag of rice is cheaper than ramen noodle packets. Making a roux from butter, flour, and milk is cheaper than buying "cream of cardboard" canned soups. Dried beans are an incredibly cheap source of protein- they just require a little more planning when you cook with them. I stock up on foods such as tomato paste, dry pasta, canned fish, frozen veggies, etc, when they go on sale.

I've been avoiding synthetic crap in my food for a very long time, and I've found that it's actually cheaper to go with simple whole foods, and cook from scratch, rather than buy packaged "non foods."

I can't afford to buy a lot of organic foods. I make avoiding GMO stuff a higher priority than organics. I only buy in-season produce- it's cheaper, usually from a more local source, and is fresher/tastier/higher in nutrients.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19, Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 13(homeschooled)
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Old 07-22-2007, 05:50 PM
 
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I think it depends on what you decide to care about. For instance, we can't possibly afford organic dairy -- we actually don't buy dairy at all without WIC -- but I care a great deal about rBST in my dairy products. There is one commerical dairy in our state whose milk is rBST free, so we chose to go out of our way to use our WIC checks where we can buy that brand of milk. There are a couple of other things I'm exceedingly picky about (like canned tomatoes and broth that actually has met a cow on some occasion) but otherwise we do as well as we can with what we know and don't worry about organics or additives.

On the other hand, I'm a full-blown nazi with regard to whole foods. We do not buy processed food, period. We don't drink soda or convienence drinks --we have water and milk and that's it, although we did have to have a brita filter in our old house because the water was terrible. We eat lots of beans, rice, pasta (I buy ramen and throw the 'flavor packet' out) and basic frozen veggies, and only use meat occasionally and in small amounts for flavor. We eat whatever fruit is in season and I try to can and preserve it when it's cheap so we can afford to eat it when it's not. We cook a lot of third world food -- mexican, indian, african, thai, etc. -- from scratch to stretch the food dollars. But when our food dollars are so very scarce, I flat out refuse to spend any of them on food that doesn't have any FOOD in it, you know?

Spending all of my money and time on this wild, wild life.
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Old 07-22-2007, 06:29 PM
 
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I tend to eat A LOT of pasta! It's pretty much all I eat and I know I need to eat better. I've started to make an effort.

I'm vegatarian so I save money by not buying meat,chicken or fish.I've been veg since I was 16 so it wasn't really a finacial decision. If you don't want to go veg you could cut down the amount of meat meals each week and save a little money.

I always make my own chili! It's way cheaper then canned stuff at the grocery store. It's even cheaper if you use dried beans and take the time to soak them,but I never do.

I drink tap water put through the Birtta. I also make my own iced-tea and lemondade.

I buy the no name brand stuff or store brands. I wish I could by organic sometimes though.

I sometimes work as a nanny and when I do I eat better! The families always have fruit for the kids and I.

I get frozen veggies when they are on sale. I know if I get the fresh ones they will go bad. If I know I won't eat something before it goes bad then I won't buy it anymore. I've wasted so many carottes b/c I was to lazy to wash and cut them and they went bad. Now I pay a little more for the ready washed and cut baby carrotes. It actually saves me money.
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Old 07-22-2007, 06:35 PM
 
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IOn the other hand, I'm a full-blown nazi with regard to whole foods.
Unless you mean that you're going to torture and murder 12 million people if you don't eat whole foods, then please don't use the term "nazi." It's very offensive.

You could say "I'm a full-blown zeolot about whole foods" or "I'm fanatical about whole foods" instead.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19, Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 13(homeschooled)
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Old 07-22-2007, 06:45 PM
 
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It just hit me recently that some of our CC debt is from buying more Organic than we could afford.

For now, I concentrate on only a couple of items being Organic and we do our best to avoid HFCS due to ds' sensitivity. Otherwise, depending on how much money I have determines whether we eat any meat (we're quite picky about meat) or whether we get a good variety of fruits and veggies.

Convenience foods are expensive, you can save so much money cooking from scratch AND you avoid those obnoxious additives.

I like a lot of the recipes in the Mom's Guide to Meal Makeovers and they seem to be pretty square meals... and the ingredients are usually easy to find ingredients that don't require having gourmet stores nearby. Check out their website.
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Old 07-22-2007, 10:54 PM
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To the OP: is there a spring nearby that you could bottle water from? I know there is one in a town near us, and lots of people go there to fill their jugs every week. They don't need to buy bottled water that way.

Also check out http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com for great, cheap recipe ideas!
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Old 07-22-2007, 10:55 PM
 
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Niether my husband or I were amazing cooks, and we started out even worse. I took myself down to the local library and checked out 10,000 books on cooking. Now I know something of the science behind cooking. My husband got himself a job that has 2 perks - a 20 % discount on merch. and teaching him how to cook amazing meals (Not to mention a beyond decent health package, 401K, and caring employers - go Whole Foods!)

We have cut out almost all meat. And now I'm trying to cut out canned beans! Let's see if that happens! We don't eat a lot of fruit and what we do is in season or frozen. We eat a lot of lentils and rice and beans and squash right now.

I'm joining my local buying club that I found through http://www.greenpeople.org/.

We drink only organic milk though it's cheaper here in Denver than it was in Phoenix so I guess that's regional. If we can't afford milk that week I make from scratch, whole wheat waffles or pancakes. I try to buy cage free eggs, but either I'm going to have to go half and half on that one (buy one week, regular then next ect) or I'm going to have to give up my love of omlettes.

When I was buying meets like crazy, I would stock up on hams at easter, turkeys at thanksgiving and ONLY buy from the 50% off last day bin.

I still check my local nf store's milk, eggs and cheeses for the dates that they're going to be "out" (sell by dates) and have scored some GREAT buys (like 99 c eggs, 1/2 gall of organic milk, etc). It's hit or miss, but it's great to have that money to stock up on something else, like flour or baking powder or vanilla or something!

I'm learning how to make artisan breads - in my food processor! and it's summer - shop farmers markets. I'm seriously getting worried now about how I'm going to make it during the winter though.....

Oh, and we have a freezer which we freeze things. i think I have 5 blocks of organic cheddar that was on sale. Ect.

And drinks? We only drink water. Sometimes we'll buy juice (like once every 3 months or so), but only water. And beer. But that comes out of our (minute amount of) pocket change each week. And we're buying some cheaper, but still good local brews!

~ Kim

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Old 07-22-2007, 11:35 PM
 
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People tend to speak more about what they would like to do for themselves than what they actually do.

I think people should make an effort to eat the best food possible, of course. But human bodies are fairly remarkable in their ability to survive for 7 or 8 decades off of less than ideal food. A few preservatives and FDC yellow dye number 5 aren't going to kill you if you eat them on occasion. The effort and expense I see a lot of people go through to be completely "natural" almost defeats the benefit of living at all. It is not a sin to partake of the occasional modern convenience and you're not a bad parent if you let your kid eat a Twinkee once in a month.

There is almost an "I'm more natural than thou" attitude among some people, but you get used to it. :

By the way, you can usually refill gallon jugs with water for $0.50. Most grocery stores have a machine out front for that. It's better than soda.

There is no mystery why Americans are fatter than the rest of the world. It is because healthy food is expensive. But as long as you keep an active lifestyle, you do not need to be in poor health just because your food comes from a factory instead of a farm. You shouldn't feel guilty about not buying organic.
Thanks for that. We eat nothing organic and very little natural food. I don't cook from scratch--heats up the house too damn much right now, but we eat ok. Maybe we'll save on the oil bill if I cook more in Winter.
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Old 07-22-2007, 11:45 PM
 
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[QUOTE=Krystal323;8702178]yeah, i think having the forethought and talent for scratch-cooking helps a lot. i am a pretty lousy cook, and i totally don't have enough kitchen stuff right now sometimes i wash the same pot 4 times in one day :

i disagree on this: i think it takes more money to eat healthier, not less. then again, i am not willing nor able to go making my own noodles, or growing a veggie garden (i would but i live in a 2nd story apartment!)...
: Me too, except we live in a townhouse with no yard, no space, and no anything. But I definitely won't cook with herbs, etc. When I want to eat, I want to eat *NOW*! Dealing with some other issues right now... It's amazing some days if I eat at all, much less 3 meals and reasonably ok. So I'm not picky about what I eat, though part of me knows I should be and wishes I were.

Well, I made the mental transition from hospital birth to UC, from antibiotics to natural medicine/Reiki, and others. So maybe soon I'll go from processed/convenience foods to at least natural, if not organic. I just hope it happens before DS starts eating solids, b/c even though I can't do it for myself, mentally that is, I want to for DS.
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Old 07-23-2007, 12:35 AM
 
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Unless you mean that you're going to torture and murder 12 million people if you don't eat whole foods, then please don't use the term "nazi." It's very offensive.

You could say "I'm a full-blown zeolot about whole foods" or "I'm fanatical about whole foods" instead.
Not to derail the thread, but I noticed that too, and was going to comment. Its not a word or a reference to throw around lightly.
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Old 07-23-2007, 12:38 AM
 
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Definitely check out the Hillbilly Housewife. It's really helpful. I really agree that the best way to go when you are poor - and I consider myself poor - is to buy whole foods, but no necassarily organic food. Stock up on beans and rice, pasta, frozen veggies. Store brands are cheap and usually very good. Throw some store brand pasta and store brand frozen veggies into a pot of boiling water together and let them cook. Then toss them with jarred sauce. I make pancakes with thawed frozen blueberries in them. I make mac and cheese that takes about 30 minutes total and is sooo much better and more satisfying than boxed ones, plus it lasts all week! I serve mac and cheese with a different frozen veggie every night sometimes. That's another plus for cooking things, rather than relying on convenience foods. Convenience foods don't usually produce many leftovers. And I also agree about drinking water. I have a Brita water pitcher that my mother gave me and it's really great. I buy milk that is a local store's brand and has no hormones and sometimes I buy Juicy Juice, if it's "buy one get one free". I would suggest going to the Hillbilly Housewife site to get some ideas because they are easy and cheap. Then give it a shot. I don't know that I eat as well as I would like to. I mean, my dream is to live on an organic farm and eat only things that I grow myself.....one day.....I certainly think I eat well, though and I feed my almost 2 year old DD well. Good luck if you decide to give it a shot!

"If we are peaceful, if we are happy, we can smile and blossom like a flower, and everyone in our family, our entire society, will benefit from our peace." ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
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Old 07-23-2007, 01:15 AM
 
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Here's a recipe for really yummy rice and beans. You can make this once a week in a BIG batch and freeze beans, refrigerate rice until you use it. It's really cheap and if you buy rice and beans in bulk, it'll really help. Just eating a yummy healthy lunch every day helps a lot.

1.Soak Sorted Pinto Beans (1/3 pot beans, rest water) overnight.
2. Next day, dump out all water (this will keep it from giving you gas later) Fill up with water again and boil with a little salt until the beans are smooshable inbetween two fingers.
3. Dump beans out (reserve about 4 cups of the bean water) and blend 1/2 of the beans in a blender with a little bean water. If you run out of bean water, use regular. You have to hold the lid well because the liquid is hot.
4. Mix all the beans together in a big bowl and add, say, 3T Pureed Garlic, 3T Cumin and 3T Salt.
5. Mix together and sdjust as necissary.

Put a scoop on top of rice, add some hot sauce, sour cream, cheese, Chopped tomatoes, Salsa, brewers yeast, anything that looks good or you have laying around. YOu can also put this in a tortilla with shredded left over meat (or not)and maybe a little cheese, and have a burritio.
This is a CHEAP meal, that, if made in advance and in bulk will not only save you money, but time, which is just as precious.

I'd also look at "the moosewood cookbook", it's got excellent recipes in it.
I like to look at whatever produce is on sale, buy it, then take it home and figure out what to make with it. Soup is a great money saver because once you get down the basics of veggie soup, you can make it out of anything, and it lasts for a few days.

If you have the time try making your own whole wheat bread once a week. Make two loaves ang have it in the morning with the cheapest of all breakfast foods,Oatmeal!

I find that adding to your perspective on food from "mac&cheese, Pizza, with "rice, beans, bread, soup and veggies" or just mixing the two together to make a little more variation in your diet.
My mom always made sure that we had a salad on our plates. It wasn't organic, but we always knew a meal wan't complete without it. And a bag of frozed veggies cooked with some salt and a little herbs or spices is a welcome addition to any meal, and frozen veggies are CHEAP.

It's really hard to eat organic when you can see how much other food you can buy with that money. I think it is much more important to eat a balanced diet with healthy meals...

For myself though, I always buy organic eggs, milk and meat because I can afford it. But if you can buy twice the eggs/meat when they're unorganic, do it.

Best of luck Mama,
Crystal
(if you need more cheap , easy, tasty recipes, I'm full of them....lemme know)
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Old 07-23-2007, 01:20 AM
 
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[quote=mrskennedy;8704841][quote=Krystal323;8702178]

i disagree on this: i think it takes more money to eat healthier, not less. then again, i am not willing nor able to go making my own noodles. quote]

Ummmm.....most of the poor people in the world live off rice and beans (they can be yummy incorporated into your diet) or soups. I certainly don't think that you have to "make your own noodles" but making your own rice isn't too much to ask. Also, starting to cook BEFORE you are hungry is a really good habit to get into.
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Old 07-23-2007, 01:39 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krystal323 View Post
*snip*
i disagree on this: i think it takes more money to eat healthier, not less. then again, i am not willing nor able to go making my own noodles, or growing a veggie garden (i would but i live in a 2nd story apartment!)...

my dp grew up with not a lot of $$ and he's very skilled at "making something out of nothing", but i can't expect him to make dinner everynight on top of working 50+ hours a week, yk? one thing he makes for us that is cheap is homemade pizza. it tastes awesome, but jeez it's a lot of effort IMO: making the sauce, mixing the dough, then cleaning the flour-ey countertop and washing the dough-bowl :

*snip*
I do agree that it generally costs more to eat helthfully. It also takes more effort. I work FT, and when things get busy, dinner is usually the first to go. Those are the nights we eat burritos (with store-bought tortillas and canned beans -- easy) or scrambled eggs. If it stays crazy or someone is sick, hello canned soup and toasted bread!

One thought about the homemade pizza, though. I hear ya on the mess and cleanup, but here's what I do: I do make the dough, but I cut short the rising because it IS after all going to be a flat bread. (I know that Trader Joe's carries 1-pound bags of pizza dough for something like $1.59, though, if that's an option.) Then, for pizza sauce, I just put about 1/2 cup of jarred pasta sauce in a bowl and mix in tomato paste (one of those little $0.50 cans) until it's thick enough. I usually add some extra basil, and there you go -- pizza sauce. Cheaper than jarred pizza sauce, but way easier than making your own from scratch.

You just do what you can, you know? I've gotten more creative on our little shoestring as I've experimented more, and I've mastered other meals so that they take less time and effort. I've also been known to write up a list of Things I Know How to Make With Stuff I Usually Have On Hand At All Times. (aka Dinner Options!) That reminds me of what my options are when it's 5:00 and I'm thinking, "Uhhhhhhh...... " about dinner.
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