Thanksgiving Love and Food

x-posted from Hamline SPROUT

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

I hope your first weeks of the challenge have been good (collectively). This week has been really great for me – I was able to spend some time with the family, eating really good food and relaxing away from the rush of city life.

Thanksgiving has always been the biggest holiday for my family. My parents got married the week of Thanksgiving, and so two days before her wedding, my mom cooked a giant feast for both sides of the family. Since then, it has been one of the most important holidays my parents and I celebrate. This year, we had a fairly small crew, with only eleven of us around the table. (Usually we have around 15 or 16.)

I learned my passion for good food from my parents. I was the kid, growing up, that just wanted a burger from McDonald’s instead of all the (really good) food my parents would make for me on a regular basis. Now, thankfully, that has completely reversed, as I’ve come to understand the reasons why food is important.

My understanding of food issues and hunger has evolved as I’ve come to place myself in this world of politics, ethics, and social justice. I learned in high school that what I put in my mouth is so much more than its taste.

That still didn’t change the fact that, when I went off to college, I thought more about quantity of what I was eating than quality. I wanted to get food that tasted as good as possible that cost as little as possible. And that’s definitely understandable; I am not, in any way, saying that for some, quantity may be more of a consideration than quality. That is something that should be weighed personally.

And isn’t that the whole point of this challenge? To figure out how different people, with different economic backgrounds, and different living situations, can incorporate aspects of organic/sustainable living into their lives without sacrificing too much.

Personally, I have come to prioritize food in my life. Cooking is something I enjoy, and something that has a more lasting satisfaction for me than other experiences. Cooking for myself really makes me appreciate when I eat out, or don’t have to cook for myself, or when I splurge and make popcorn at the movie my dinner.

Really knowing what it takes to make food, to grow food, to produce food, is something I have SPROUT to thank.

… wow, this turned into more of a reflection than I thought it would be. On to last week’s grocery list!

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Grocery List:

Whole Wheat Pita

Cherry Tomatoes

GIANT onion

Apples

Bibb Lettuce

Raspberry Leaf Tea (Traditional Medicinals – supports the female system)

Yogi Tea – Kava stress relief

Potatoes

Raspberry and Cream Granola

Connie’s Organic Pepperoni Pizza

Total Spent: $37.30

This really surprised me. I didn’t have to buy as much last week, because I was at home from Wednesday-Sunday. I’ll have to be more careful this week. And I’ll also have to make sure that I eat everything I buy.

Will plan my groceries better this week around. Have a great day, everyone!

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My Challenge

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The Challenge: I will be buying all organic (or local, sustainable, whatever you want to call it) groceries on a limited budget. This budget will start high, and then I will gradually readjust it. I will attempt to spend as little money as possible, and every week will post a recipe, my grocery list (with prices), and talk about what has worked and what hasn’t worked.

For now, my budget is $45 a week. I will work it down to an even more thrifty budget if possible. This budget is for food, so it does include eating out. If I buy too many groceries to feasibly eat out, I’ll take money from my “fun” budget. My goal is to make my trips to the co-op for the week around $30.

Plans to Meet the Challenge: I will make two large meals a week, and save the leftovers. I will also make my own bread/bagels/other baked goods. I’m going to drastically cut back on the amount of meat that I consume. Whenever possible, I will buy in bulk (grains, seeds, granola, etc.) and make things from scratch, with enough for leftovers for at least a week. I will also eat all of the food that I purchase, rather than letting anything go to waste.

Let’s do this! I’m excited!

x-posted from SPROUT’s blog