Saturday, September 21, 2013

The #SNAP Challenge Day 2

I'm not going to be able to blog every day about this journey because this weekend I have a crazy schedule at work.  But I want to keep you up to date and let you know what I am learning.

photo by Heather Kennedy,
This morning, I started cooking a bag of white beans in the crockpot before I went to bed.  This should provide 5 or more meals this and next week.  I did not add meat as I've used my budget this week.  But a flavor packet was included.  I usually discard these but I added it this time.

On the way home, I did stop and pick up a snack.  Wait, wasn't I out of money?  Yes BUT this was a freebie.  I debated about this for a while.  I get lots of freebies (coupons, discounted pizzas, etc) from my work.  I don't plan on using these during this challenge because they are not available to the public.  This freebie was available to anyone on the Kroger website- simply download it to your Kroger Plus card.  This week, they had a 5 pack of "Breakfast on the Go" FOR FREE!  5 packages of nut/granola, and berries (over $3) so I supplemented my stash with this.  If I was really dependent on SNAP, I would take advantage of every freebie/coupon I could.  I do anyhow.

Today I ate  pretty well.

Emerald Breakfast on the Go pack          FREE          180 calories
1 banana                                                 22 cents      105 calories
16 ounces skim milk                                36 cents      180 calories
1 serving turkey (3 slices)                        74  cents      60 calories
4 slices of bread                                      24 cents       280 calories
Miracle Whip                                          n/a                60 calories
2 servings veggie mix                               65 cents       120 calories
1/2 cup cooked white beans                    16 cents       120 calories
2 baked potatoes                                     76 cents       550 calories
lots of margarine                                      n/a                who knows
Total                                                        $3.13            1655 calories

I have brought a  bag of nut mix and 2 servings of toasted oats cereal to work (400 calories, 24 cents) so I will have consumed 2065 calories for a cost of $3.37 by tomorrow morning.

Lessons learned today.  Always shop at the lowest price supermarket and sign up for their club card! Krogers is running a promo on their website where they give away free stuff every Friday.  You download a coupon to your Kroger Plus card and have 2 weeks to redeem.  Last week it was Breakfast on the Go! nut packs.  A few weeks ago it was toothpaste.  Sometimes it's great- other times- meh.  But beggars can't be choosers (and yes, I did go and get 1 free tube of toothpaste on the way home from work).

I am getting a bit weary of potatoes.  They are a cheap, healthy source of calories but...  So I prepared beans in the crockpot and tomorrow I will make the box of pasta for the weekend.  So far, I am feeling pretty good about this.  But it does require more diligence and discipline (preparing meals- not grabbing on the go).  I am very thankful to live in a country where basic foodstuffs are abundant and low cost- even cheap.

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