Budget Reduction Strategy #1

14 Feb

Eat well. Stay in budget. I eat strictly organic, unprocessed foods. And it can get pricey.

I generally shop at just a few stores: Azure Standard, Trader Joe’s, Costco, and a local farmer.

Azure Standard has all the bulk foods I need: beans, flour, herbs and spices, oils, vinegars, canned things, jarred things, nuts, fresh and frozen produce, dried fruits, dried coconut, grains. I buy everything I can in bulk. They ship once a month and it comes on a big truck. Everyone who ordered meets at the drop point and helps to unload. You have to sign up for a free account to see the pricing.

Costco: I buy organic chicken breasts, whole organic chickens, organic carrots, organic spinach, mushrooms, organic butter, organic heavy cream, organic frozen green beans, organic frozen berries. Then I stock up on toilet paper, paper towels, trash bags, aluminum foil, Ziploc bags, and cheese.

Trader Joe’s: They have great prices on organic fruits and veggies. I also get organic tortillas, cereal for my husband, some pastas, organic milk, and anything else that I need to fill in for the month.

Local farmer: this woman is great- I get all my farm fresh eggs from her and she is currently growing us a cow! I don’t get a lot of produce from her because it can be a little pricey, but it is always amazingly delicious.

And finally there’s the Farmer’s Market. Every Thursday morning there is the most delicious abundance of fruits and vegetables set up at our local Community College. I have to make sure to only carry a certain amount of cash on me- because I will spend it all. All of it. Every last dime. I often have to make a second trip to the car because my arms get too full. I’ve been going for about 8 years now, and now that I know the farmers they give me great deals. They are the nicest people and I look forward to seeing them every week!

My real goal is to have my own greenhouse. Twitch promised to build me one as soon as we finish getting his shop up. Dang 40’x60′ building. This is going to take a while to save for it, but because of building codes, we have to be careful what we put on our property until we get it all up and permitted. I just wanted a little hoop house, but Twitch doesn’t do anything halfway. I’ll end up with a gigantic permanent structure and a misting system. I’m sure it’s going to be awesome and totally worth the wait. But ug! the wait!

Eating well means that we eat less. Our nutritional needs are met through the high vitamin and mineral content of our produce and meat, so we aren’t eating as much as we were before. For the most part- we don’t eat processed and packaged foods. I LOVE cooking from scratch. We never go to the doctor. We aren’t on any meds. Eating well is really doable- but I can get carried away. Because I love food. And I love cooking. And I love buying new and yummy ingredients. So I still have some work to do in this area, but with these resources staying within my budget is doable while still eating clean.

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