I was really happy the other day when Brian told me he’d found a little produce stand close to our house. We had a great one in Florida and in the Summer months we took a weekly trip there to load up on the cheap. That stuff just seems to taste so much better when they don’t come from a grocery store. And of course I was very excited at the prices.
Like with most people (I guess), I have a grocery budget. Or at least try to have one. I’m fairly consistent with coupons and bargain shopping when it comes to our food. Yes it’s a pain in the ass, but it drives me insane to spend so much money on something that we need to survive. (And yes I do need coffee to survive, thank you) I was really dreading going shopping the first time after I started on the healthy kick, because I knew I’d be shopping the perimeter of the store more than usual and I know that area is more expensive than the boxed and canned aisles.
When Brian wasn’t working full time, things like DiGiorno pizza, Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, Rice-a-Roni, Suddenly Salad (Ranch & Bacon all the way), Zataran’s various spicy boxed dinners, Gordons Crunchy Fish Parts – all that stuff went into my cart on a weekly basis. Carby things with sodium and preservatives are very tasty and VERY AFFORDABLE. And obviously very bad for when I want to fit into my pants. Now that I’m trying to replace the evil with the righteous, yes it’s costing more, but luckily it has coincided with two regular incomes again. That the fact that you’d be amazed at the money you save when you’re not buying ice cream, cookies, chips, Little Debbies and so forth. Funny how I can always justify buying crap, but bitch about the price of fresh vegetables. It ain’t easy being me.
In a perfect world, I’d have an Oprah chef preparing me fresh and tasty food all day long. Salads, sea food, grilled chicken that doesn’t taste like cardboard – it would be totally easy and enjoyable to eat right. In my world, I am the only chef, and I am a lazy-ass. While it doesn’t take rocket science to buy ingredients for a salad and carry those ingredients with me to work, it does take forethought and a small amount of effort. And it’s sad, but it appears this going to be an ongoing test for me to execute this with any consistency. However, when I paid $6 for a half-assed chef salad from a grocery deli the other day, I was pretty disgusted with myself. I know I work five days a week and on every one of those days I’m going to want lunch; why do I only usually manage to plan ahead for a couple of those days?
I guess it’s just another challenge in a whole slew of ’em.