Project: Food Budget (Thanksgiving Edition)

Today’s Food Budget report isn’t going to be like the rest of them.  In fact, I basically threw my budget out the proverbial window this week.  As you see below, we closed on our house this week.  We don’t have our belongings yet, but we were in the house each day cleaning and painting and making plans.  We’re working hard to be ready for the arrival of our stuff on Monday.  And that means lots of eating out, ordering pizza, stopping at Wendy’s, and stocking up on drinks to keep us going while we work.  I did buy some of the usuals: bread, peanut butter, milk, and apples.  And then there was the holiday meal.  I’ve never cooked a Thanksgiving meal before!  I’m sad to not be with our family, but I’m excited about making my first Thanksgiving.  With very few dishes or prep tools, we’re keeping our meal pretty simple.  We’re roasting a turkey breast.  I’m also making corn, cranberry sauce, and sweet potatoes.  Of course, there will be pie.  Apple pie.  We started our morning with banana coffee cake with chocolate chip streusel and hot tea.  I don’t know exactly how much was spent this week.  I know that I am over my $400 goal for the month but under my $600 budget.

As I think about the meals to come and those already consumed (Hubby’s family “Thanksgiving” at work and our church’s dinner last night), I marvel at the variety and depth of flavors we enjoy.  I think about the quantitiy of food that will be consumed over this holiday weekend.  Then I think about the pinch I sometimes feel on a $400/month budget.  I stand in the grocery aisle, and every now and then, I let that pesky bitterness wiggle its way into my head.  I want to buy that expensive cereal or splurge on the yummy block of cheese, and I feel sorry for myself–just the tiniest, teeniest little bit.  Right there in the aisle, I give myself a shake and even laugh at myself.  I have (potentially)$600 every single month to feed my family nutritious, tasty food that allows their bodies to grow, their minds to zoom, and their hands to work.  I have been blessed with the mission to plan and provide meals and snacks with the bountiful resources that God has given me to steward.  Yes, bountiful.  Hitting that $400 goal feels impossible at times, but if I lived in most other places and any other time, I would not be looking at a triple digit number.  I would not be enjoying meals with multiple dishes and more than water to drink.  Instead of wishing that I could buy the organic produce and the tiny bottle of vanilla beans for a recipe, I could be living with fear that my kids were going to bed hungry.  I am blessed, and I am Thankful.


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