Wednesday, June 10, 2009

"Mama's Losin' It" Assignment

I want to write more, and I found a blog that gives weekly challenges...there are a list of potential topics to write about, and then share on Thursday. Last week, I was going to begin, but the perfectionist in me wanted to pre write, etc. and, since my time is not abundant, I just never did it. So, here is my effort...right off the top of my head...take it or leave it.

The topic I chose: Name your current addiction...

It has been often said that every cloud has a silver lining. Now, our current cloud has been reduced paychecks, and no second...and third incomes (my sweetie is a manufacturing engineer taking a 10 percent pay cut, a private disc jockey with no dances or receptions for the first time in 30 years, and a real estate agent who...well, that is self explanatory!)I have been seeking outside employment, but my 29 plus years as a stay at home mom is, apparantly, laughable, so no solid hits yet. So, we cut...and cut...and cut. No dinners out, no movies, no shopping for clothing, no haircuts, no fancy vacations (well, that is not a sacrifice...we have always camped in tents), and the most obvious...our food budget. This has taken me on some wonderful adventures: hence my current addiction-incorporting the food I get from the Westside Food Bank Food Club and the Westside Food Bank Sharing Cooperative into our everyday meals.

Our menu calendar has been used for many months. I can track sale purchases and plan meals accordingly (and I write on the calendar where the said meat, etc. is...I forget sometimes!) With the food club and weekly food bank, however, I can have a rough plan, but I have to "tweak" constantly, according to just what my bounty is. Two weeks ago, we received an abundance of artichokes. Sweet hubby cooked them up on our outdoor stove and the kids and he had a healthy feast/snack. Sweet potatoes have been turned into muffins, chili, and, next week, enchiladas. Now, I have so many red potatoes, and I refuse to let any of this blessed food spoil or go to waste, that I have learned to make garlic red potatoes, and mashed red potatoes. Tomorrow, I get to try red potato salad! I am so grateful for the internet...anytime I need, I can search and find new ways to use these wonderful treasures.

Now, this obsession does not go unnoticed by my children. Kayty loved the lasagna I made, until it was revealed that the sauce had grated carrots, chopped fennel, and eggplant layered with the cheese and pasta. Nathan looks twice at the muffins I make: bananas were fine, but sweet potatoes were starting to go to far, though he did find that they tasted great. I am often given quite a lot of bread, thus sub rolls are sliced on the diagonal, and made into french toast that I freeze in single servings, ready to pop in the toaster or microwave. I have also found interesting ways to serve yummy toasted rolls, by just buttering and cooking like you would a grilled cheese sandwich. I cooked a load of wheat berries in my crockpot, and then placed them in serving sized bags. These stretch my taco meat, my spaghetti sauce, and there is whole wheat in every bite. Everything I get, everything I search recipes for, becomes a sort of adventure, and it takes me in...I am so addicted.

The silver lining is wonderful, and has given me a chance to try things I would not have tried. It has given my family a chance to eat things they would never have eaten. It has given me the chance to stretch my bounds, to come up with new, and more exciting ways to use and never to waste. Who knew that a trip to a food bank, and sometimes a line to sit and wait in, would bring such pleasure, such knowledge, and such fun...and something to desire more than even chocolate...and I can get little bars of that from the food club and add them to my muffins...ohh, the delight!

P.S. Just got home...have a crockpot out on the back porch, full of Yukon Gold and Red Potatoes cooking to mash later, and another crockpot with sliced apples (Cleaning out the patio fridge), cranberries, honey and cinnamon Dee brought me from India in September. Should go great with the turkey mom cooked for us (she was cleaning out her freezer...what a great lady!)See, more silver linings...and I got MUSHROOMS and Peaches and celery this morning: I hit the jackpot!

12 comments:

Musings of the Mrs. said...

I love your current addiction. I would have so much fun with the bounty and allrecipes.com. I'd try every recipe. Fun!

Christina said...

You've come up with some pretty creative recipies! Love the pix of your family!

gibkidsmom said...

Ok- I'm ready for you to teach me how to do all this amazing stuff you do! I'm very impressed with your new addiction!

Roxane said...

I think it's wonderful that you have such a healthy addiction :) Stopping by from Mama Kat's

Molly Doe said...

I love your addiction. I've been having fun finding recipes myself, figuring out how and what to substitute for dairy products, and how to stretch meat. and I love your positive attitude.

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