An update and some thoughts on eating organically

29 May

My lovely toddler and I are now settled in to our new two bedroom flat. It is clean and tidy, well insulated, with a new kitchen and practical layout, and convenient to lots of things. The downsides are that it is an upstairs flat and there is not much of a garden to speak of. But, good-life-geek that I am becoming, I have already asked my landlord for permission to have herbs and vegies in pots on my porch, and will work on having a small vege garden in the grassy area downstairs once he forgets about the fact that I flooded the laundry and kitchen on my second night here.

My current challenge, as I mentioned before, is to figure out how to feed me and the baby on my limited grocery budget. I have made a step towards this (before the separation, in fact) by buying organic vege boxes. I would really like to buy all organic food, but I just don’t think I can afford that. If I buy healthy food like grains, and bake my own bread, I can probably eat fairly healthily on a budget. But the more I learn the more I don’t want to compromise. I want to eat all organic, and morally, shouldn’t I be able to?

However, my government, who pays my bills, doesn’t really care about eating organically. If all I can afford is white bread, they think we’re still being fed. Alas and alack and all that. I will find a way!

Here are some tips I have learned already in this new journey.

  • Johnsonville Salvation Army have a 2 course meal for $2 every Wednesday night at 6pm. Now it appears I’m not that committed to organic, because I’m quite happy to go along and eat their beef casserole with peas and potatoes, with custard and pear for dessert. Because I don’t have to cook. And it’s $2. And I don’t even have to clean up afterwards. If you’re not local to me, chances are your local church or community centre has something similiar. It’s not full of seedy characters; being a church there was quite a family atmosphere, and I was happy to sit through 2 minutes of preaching between courses in order to get all the benefits I mentioned above.
  • Invite friends round for dinner. You can make a meal for 2 or 3 almost as cheaply as for 1 – especially if it’s a stew or such like. Just add a bit more split peas or potatoes or stock. There are lots of cheap meals that can be made fancy. And in return, they’ll invite you round for dinner, so that’s another night you don’t have to cook or pay for food.
  • Buy quality. I have discovered this really delicious peanut butter. It’s about $6 a jar, which is almost 3 times the price of crappy peanut butter. But it has no sugar or emulsifiers or anything in, and it’s so yummy I actually want to eat it. This saves me having cheese or pesto or ham or something else expensive on my cracker. The same with cheese; I buy Mainland tasty cheese (other brands of tasty cheese aren’t really tasty at all) and it’s strong enough that you need to use less, therefore saving money. It’s about $12 a block compared to $9 for colby or cheap tasty, but it lasts me a long time.

2 Responses to “An update and some thoughts on eating organically”

  1. Carolyn May 29, 2011 at 2:16 pm #

    I like your can-do attitude… even though I feel you shouldn’t be going through all this… ;-( It seems so tough but i guess liberating also! I know you will figure this out and it seems you are learning a great deal along the way! Making breads with rolled oats are pretty cool and living off bananas and apples are actually cheaper. Creating a green juice on waking is oh so satisfying and will keep hunger at bay for a long time. i.e. eating less… and spending less. Do the organic thing and buy your food fresh – its amazing what you can do with fresh produce… you will feel great as a result and your toddler will be healthier for it. Good luck xxx

  2. thegoodlife101 June 11, 2011 at 2:45 am #

    Thanks for the encouragement!!

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