Day 1 – FNS (Food Stamp) Challenge

Day 1 of this challenge brought the following revelations:

  • I find myself thinking about food in a more desperate, obsessive way than normal.
  • Eating on less money/cheaper food was easier as a kid when I didn’t have allergies, digestive issues and low blood sugar.
  • I don’t eat much normally so quantities didn’t worry me. But I do tend to nibble and snack a lot versus eating full meals. This helps keep my blood sugar balanced. Having to wait for meal times is harder than I thought.
  • I’m starting to see that bread and rice will be my best friends. Toast makes a lovely snack with honey or jam.
  • But, satisfying my sweet tooth is going to be really hard. Budget doesn’t allow for me to even make a  homemade cake or pie, ice cream, candy or popsicles.
  • I have several food allergies and digestive issues. I realized that if I had to eat on this amount it would be difficult to afford the foods that help control my digestive issues without having to use prescription drugs. And most likely if I had to be on food stamps I wouldn’t be able to afford those medicines. What would I do? This is the kind of stuff politicians can’t seem to understand is real. (But that’s another post for another day.)
  • I’m allergic to apples, pears and bananas. Citrus fruits I can eat but provide the fiber that isn’t best for my condition. The fruits that work best for me and that I like: blueberries, strawberries, cantaloupe and pineapples are too pricey, even canned.
  • I didn’t allot for veggies at all. Not very healthy.
  • Condiments do count in the real world. We’re lucky they don’t for this challenge.

Money really is tight for me right now thanks to an unexpected $400 veterinary bill happening at the time when the mortgage, HOA and one of my biggest bills is due. So I couldn’t afford to waste money buying things I already have just because they cost less and would keep me within the $20.75 budget. So I decided to mostly use what I already have, supplementing that with items I needed anyway such as bread. One thing I’ve already realized is how expensive even the basic staples I buy are, like bread, eggs and milk.

Here’s what I came up with:

Breakfast

  • 2 waffles – $0.76
  • 2 cups of coffee (w/ sugar and creamer) - $0.26

Lunch

  • Tuna sandwich – $0.67 (portion of tuna and bread combined)
  • 1/2 package beef flavored ramen noodles - $0.40
  • 1 cup Lemon ginger tea – $0.19

Snack

  • One slice of toast with honey – $0.33

Dinner

  • 1/3 package beef flavored ramen noodles with one fried egg – $0.72
  • 1/2 of turkey burger patty – $0.75

This brought me to a grand total of $3.75. And then I decided to drink a 7.5 oz can of ginger ale to settle my stomach which at 54 cents, pushed me 14 cents over the budget.

I think I have a better plan for day two. I’ll also remember to take photos tomorrow.

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