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My husband and I are leaving our fertility in the hands of the Lord. As of now, we're pregnant with #3. With all of the shows on TV depicting the lives of large families, I notice every one of them buys processed foods in bulk. Is this a necessity due to lack of time? Wouldn't you have your kids help with cooking and growing foods, to the best of their ability or is this unrealistic?<br><br>
I am the type who would want to grow my own gardens, have my own chickens for eggs/meat, and be self sufficient with food, and home cook every meal (and probably a great deal of cooking for the freezer for easy food nights). Is this possible with a large family?<br><br>
Just curious, as we are very frugal and I would hate to have to buy so much food that I could otherwise grow and preserve on my own!<br><br>
Tell me how you do food and save money, please?
 

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Not a big family yet, but I'm watching this for when we are!
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I am the type who would want to grow my own gardens, have my own chickens for eggs/meat, and be self sufficient with food, and home cook every meal (and probably a great deal of cooking for the freezer for easy food nights). Is this possible with a large family?</td>
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Possible? Probably more likely to happen because you'll have built-in helpers when the kids are a little older.
 

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well I onlyhave three but we have a big garden every year and do a lot of perserving and cooking from scratch.<br><br>
I don't see why this would be impossible at all. You may need to recruit some help for the canning but once your older children are older it can just be part of thier responsibilities that time of year.<br>
the thing is I think garden is an expensive hobby and it would be cheaper for me to just buy it. i do it anyway. i like home grown tuff and my kids are really into it.<br><br>
One ofm y favorite things to keep on hand is LLL baking mix. you can sub it for bisquic in any recipe. Stuff like this (since it is all dry ingredients) is a great thing for the littles to help with. You can also premix all kinds of things with dry ingredients and store them in quart jars or even bigger bins. things like basic cookie mix, muffin mix, bean soups, etc. . . scoop out what you need and add wet ingredients. andof course a good freezer is worth its weight in gold.
 

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expecting #7 here this summer.... we do lots of premade/easy to assemble stuff.... its just easier <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">:
 

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We have 7 ,4 are still at home.Dh hunts,we grow a huge garden.I've frozen and canned for over 30 yrs.The learning curve is pretty gentle if you didn't grow up doing those things.I save a lot of money by buying grains and beans in bulk.I shop at Sams and Aldis for store stuff.The dollar store usally has 10cent seed packs,so the gardens never cost much dollar wise just time.I started 25 flats of stuff on the porch in feb.It's just now all getting planted and looks almost as big as the hot house plants at Wally-World.<br><br>
Yes it's possible to raise a big family and not feed them junk.The pioneers did it.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>saintmom</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8000451"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
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The pioneers did it.</div>
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I do not have a large family and never will, but I had to comment on this. That is my motto<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Every time we are low on cash, time, or energy, I remind myself that frontier women somehow did "whatever". Washing machine broken? Frontier women. Out of shampoo and no money? Frontier women. 50th failed homemade bread? Frontier women. WWFWD?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Yooper</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8000880"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I do not have a large family and never will, but I had to comment on this. That is my motto<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> Every time we are low on cash, time, or energy, I remind myself that frontier women somehow did "whatever". Washing machine broken? Frontier women. Out of shampoo and no money? Frontier women. 50th failed homemade bread? Frontier women. WWFWD?</div>
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I am Frontier Woman! Hear me roar! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/ROTFLMAO.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rotflmao"><br><br>
I do not have a large family (planning on 4), but I imagine it could be done. Not that it would be easy. Especially if you have several close together who are quite young. I can't imagine four kids say under 5 would be particularly useful in the gardening department <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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WWFWD?<br><br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/biglaugh.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="laugh">: bwahahahaha<br><br>
that is my new motto
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>ThreeBeans</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8001452"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I can't imagine four kids say under 5 would be particularly useful in the gardening department <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"></div>
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Uh, yeah! We're awaiting #4 this winter and our eldest will be four in June. The way I survive right now is by having lots of fruits and vegetables on hand all the time. I just cut them up and give them out all day. Those and blocks of cheese, raisins, nuts, slices of whole grain bread which I've taught them to eat as it is, and whatever else can be handed out and taken care of by themselves.<br><br>
Anyway, they are good helpers, but I think the best I could do with a garden (and cooking, baking and cutting foods) is to find something they like to do that will keep them busy while I work. I won't likely have a garden this year- I just can't imagine adding something else to our routine-ish like days and a garden up here is an enormous undertaking. My dh and I are planning an indoor garden that we'll set up ths winter, if all goes well.<br><br>
We spend a ridiculous amount on groceries here (we spent half of what we do now when we had access to a farmer's market), so a garden would drastically reduce our costs. So would keeping animals, but I can't quite figure out how to do it yet. In a few years maybe, I hope.<br><br>
Anyway, I'd love to read how others manage. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lurk.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lurk">:
 

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I can't remember their name, but I actually saw one show about a large family on TLC and they ate really well. They drove a school bus and homeschool and seemed really cool. I would want to be friends with them. We only have 2 kids, but are planning on a large family, and I also hope to live as simply and naturally as we can.
 

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we plopped a sand box right down in the middle of our garden (with a little fence around it to boot. ours is decorative but you could always use one of those big enclosures that actually keep kids in). I am going to get them some little plastic flower pots and sick flowers so they can dig and plant and pick to thier hearts content. my friend has a really cool water/sand table which would also make a great little garden center. Also in the middle of our garden is a wading pool. and our clothes line also runs through it. . . . and we used to have a swing hanging from the clothes line. Ok yes I was often standing in the wading pool pushing the swing and alternated between pool and sand box for hanging clothes BUT kids were busy, I was making time to be outside with them without wasting what little time I have (I can water while pushing a swing, supervise the kiddie pool while hanging laundry and weed while breaking up sand fights). I use sprinklers to water (one of which is attatched to a slide) and mulch to keep down the weeds. There are little fences everywhere. not enough to deter a determined child but enough to remind an excited one. Oh and we use the scummy water from the pool for watering plants. the proximity makes this easy. SOOOO the most time consuming part of our garden was getting it dug up and planted the first year. waking it up (we put a thick mulch of grass clippings and leaves all handily mulched and collected with our lawn mower down at the end of winter and then come spring all we have to do is pull it back and loosen the soil with a garden claw. we cover the soil back up with the remiaing mulch once we get it planted) and planting is usually a half day event around here. I did most of it last night while i was cooking supper between hanging loads of laundry. cleaning it up at the end of the year takes a couple days of work. daily I spend about 10 minutes weeding and watering (alternating days) if I can't get al the weeds in 10 minutes no big. a few weeds won't over take your garden. and a kid can usually entertain themselves in sand, water or swing for at least 10 minutes at a time.
 

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subbing to learn more<br><br>
small yet groiwng family momma --<br><br>
AImee
 

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WWFWD? I LOVE IT! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/biglaugh.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="laugh">: I have 4 kids, planning the next...don't find it hard! We are going to start a garden too...but I am a huge procrastinater! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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Five children here. I am super healthy in my food choices, NO processed foods, 90% vegan, I make everything (even peanut butter) from scratch... but... ALL my kids are picky eaters and prefer processed foods. DH is picky too. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> So there is SOME processed food in the house.<br><br>
But I noticed on the Duggers (sp?) specials that they had ONLY processed foods, I couldn't believe it!
 

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Hey Yooper, would you mind if I put WWFWD? in my signature line? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/ROTFLMAO.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rotflmao">
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>ThreeBeans</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/8016890"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Hey Yooper, would you mind if I put WWFWD? in my signature line? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/ROTFLMAO.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rotflmao"></div>
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Please go ahead!
 

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We're a small family, working on growing.<br><br>
You can also plant trees and bushes that won't need as much upkeep. We have planted pears, apples, blueberries, grapes and raspberries.<br><br>
We found an organic pick-your-own strawberry farm and pick about 25 lbs each spring, then slice and freeze about 20 lbs to use during the winter. At $1.25-$1.50/lb it beats the grocery store and the kids have a blast.
 

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We are expecting baby #5, and we really don't allow much processed food in our house. We do buy cereals, frozen pizza on occasion, and treats like ice cream. We garden and can, and my dh hunts.<br><br>
We don't have a huge garden but we still manage to get a year's supply of just about everything we grow. The kids really are a big help...even my 3yo. My 3yo can pull weeds along with the rest of the kids, and he is great at snapping green beans. He did about 2 quarts worth just this week all by himself!<br><br>
We try to eat a whole-foods based diet without too much meat, and it works pretty well. I spend about $450 a month on groceries. I don't have time to do everything from scratch. I used to use my bread machine quite a lot, but I haven't much anymore. We don't buy organic-everything, but I do my best if the price is reasonable. Evereything from my garden is organic.<br><br>
I don't find the garden to be a big expense either. Seeds are cheap, and I normally buy tomato starts for 99 cents each. We use chicken manure and compost from our own yard waste to build up the soil.<br><br>
Oh...and we have 7 hens who do a pretty good job of keeping us in eggs. The subsist mostly on our kitchen scraps and the bugs they manage to dig up. The kids take care of them and collect the eggs. The only time I have to deal with them is when its time to clean the coop.<br><br>
I really do think it can be done. There are some things that I buy to help with time, but we are nothing like the Duggars....and I don't plan to be either. I believe in eating much better than that!
 

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Have you read <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=motheringhud-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FComplete-Tightwad-Gazette-Amy-Dacyczyn%2Fdp%2F0375752250" target="_blank">The Tightwad Gazette</a>? The author has 6 kids and lives on a farm in Maine. She grows most of their own food and uses very little processed food, IIRC.
 
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