Or very little, anyway. David was paying bills yesterday before leaving on his business trip and I offered to forgo my bi-weekly household allowance to help cover Christmas charges on the credit card. He would never have asked me to do so and I had to insist. I have $102 and a bunch of change in my wallet which should easily see me through the next two weeks if I make a point of using up what we have in the pantry and freezer.
I hadn’t planned this in advance and hadn’t even done any major grocery shopping in awhile but I still think this will be easily done because I have a bit of a hoarding tendency. I don’t really like shopping and I especially don’t like to run to the store for a couple of items we have run out of unexpectedly. Therefore I maintain a pretty good stock of food and other household items at all times. This is my opportunity to put my creativity to use and use up some of the surplus. It’s about time to defrost the freezer anyway so it will be good to see what’s in there and use some of it.
I know that many people would love to have $100 to spend on groceries and household items for two weeks and I’m under no delusion that this is going to represent any real hardship around here. Rather, I am approaching it as a personal challenge of sorts. Whenever I read the blog, “These Days in French Life”, I am astounded and humbled by Rhiana’s family’s ability to live a meaningful life while buying almost nothing. I’m especially impressed with the gourmet meals she concocts out of seemingly nothing. That’s where my focus is going to be with this…the opportunity to stretch myself and see what I can come up with using what I have on hand.
I have plenty of wheat, organic all-purpose flour and corn meal so I can bake our bread products. Our chickens are laying well and I have a surplus of eggs. I had bought a case of Tongol tuna from Amazon when they had a very good sale recently. I haven’t surveyed the depths of the freezer yet but off the top of my head I know we have tilapia, shrimp, beef ribs and a turkey in there. We have plenty of basics like rice, pasta, canned goods, baking ingredients and an extensive collection of herbs and spices.
In the household goods department, we have plenty of toilet paper, something I always keep plenty of as there are no acceptable substitutes for me. I’m almost out of shampoo but have plenty of conditioner which I use in place of shampoo at least part of the time anyway. We also have a big drawer full of little bottles from our hotel stays. Most of my cleaning is done with basics like vinegar, baking soda and Dr. Bronner’s liquid soap, all of which I have plenty of. I buy Amway detergent by the case and have oodles of it. I also have plenty cream facial cleanser, moisturizer and makeup.
I know I’ll be buying some fresh produce and milk over the next two weeks. I also need a bag of pine shavings for the chicken coop. And there may be something I haven’t anticipated yet. However, my goal is to see how little of that $102 I can spend over the next two weeks.
Instead of posting my menu for the week in advance as I usually do on Mondays, I will try to post our meals daily…perhaps even with photos! I will also note anything I purchase so you can see how I’m doing with this challenge. If anyone else would like to do something similar (make your own rules) I’d love to hear about it. If you blog about it, let me know and I’ll link to yours. If several are doing it I’ll add a list to the sidebar. And who knows? I might continue something similar even when the two weeks are up.