SNAP to it Food Stamp Challenge–Day 12

By Sharron R. Blezard, June 12, 2010

This Little Piggy went to Market Edition

Yes, this little piggy did not stay home and eat roast beef; she went to not one market but two, and the amount of money she spent made her want to cry “why, why, why” all the way home. Well, it had to be done. We were down to a few apples and handful of cherries in the way of fruit and about enough lettuce for one small salad. Plus, we have company this week, so I wanted to make sure that we had enough variety to keep the meals interesting.

I went to Bi-Lo first, as it is the closest big grocery store our apartment. After subtracting out a box of fortune cookies that are used for a writing project, I spent $86.14. Gulp. However, I did quite a bit of stocking up. I got three bags of black beans for $2.37, and three cans of tomatoes and green chilies for $1.98, and four packages of cheese for $8.00. I also splurged and bought Breyer’s vanilla bean ice cream that was on a great sale at $1.99 (regular $5.29) to have with a cherry cobbler I plan to make this week. I also bought coconut, vanilla (pure—I don’t like to bake with the imitation stuff), and almonds to make cookies with the leftover chocolate chips from the pancake brunch. Finally, I bought quite a lot of produce and spent $12.06 on spices (trying to rebuild my spice collection). Sunbelt granola bars and Moon Pies were also on the list since I fixed a Chattanooga local gift bag for our company. The other thing I bought that I normally wouldn’t have purchased was a box of deli chicken tenders because they came with a free pound of deli salad ($2.99 savings) making it less expensive than buying comparable chicken and frying it. The only other meat purchased was some good quality chicken breast for an enchilada bake.

I decided to visit Save-a-Lot on the way home to check out their deals. My dad had been telling me about some amazing values there, and he was right. Everything I bought was cheaper there than it was at Bi-Lo. Strawberries were a $1.49 less per quart, and green peppers were 2/$1. Butter was $1.59 with a coupon and cream cheese was 2/$1.38 with a coupon. So I spent $8.87 at Save-a-Lot. I’ll definitely be going back there. It reminds me of a smaller Aldi’s, but the staff was friendly, and it was clean.

The bad news is that I only have $29.75 left ($34.75 if I don’t count the Taco Bell run for which I gave my daughter money). I still think I can make it, but the menu will be pretty tight for the final week of June. The good news is that we will eat very well this week, and the pantry is well-stocked. The challenge will be no food waste. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Oh, and right now I’m just grateful to have plenty of food, reliable transportation, a roof over my head, a good mattress, and family and friends who mean the world to me. I have a lot for which to be thankful; how about you?

State of the Pantry

Well, you pretty much have it listed above. It’s full of very good food right now.

Website of the Day

Since the pantry is full at the Lucas house, I decided to check out The Hillbilly Housewife to see what’s new. Susanne, the owner and creator of the site, focuses on low-cost cooking from scratch, and she has some great ideas. I was shocked to read that the USDA now says the official cost of food for a family of four is $600 a month, and that’s on the “thrifty” plan. Good grief! Click here to explore this excellent site.

Click here to access all of the SNAP to it Food Stamp Challenge blog posts.

About the Author

The Rev. Sharron Riessinger Blezard is an ELCA pastor currently rostered in the Lower Susquehanna Synod. She came to ordained ministry after teaching secondary and college English, working in non-profit management and public relations, and moonlighting as a freelance writer. See more posts by .

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