Alina Sewing and Design

This is me in Aldi. Theoretically, of course…I am not a model. And I do not have long, red hair. Moving on…
Everyone, break out your best happy dance: yesterday we were officially one month in to the food challenge! Here’s a little update on our status:

Here are the recipes I’ve made:

What I still have left to make:
  • Curried Zucchini Soup
  • Garlic, Artichoke Hearts, Sundried Tomato and Pesto Pizza (with whole wheat crust from scratch!)
  • Butternut Squash Soup
  • Chicken Tortilla Soup (On the Border style!)
I started out with eight meal recipes and I’m technically halfway through them–nice timing, huh?
I’ve had many people ask me for some tips, so I thought I’d share a few things I’ve learned along the way (remember, I’m still a newbie at this):

  • Decide on a few recipes for the end of the month that use non-perishables. This is how I can plan and buy for such a long time! I’ve left the recipes like the pizza and butternut squash soup for last because those ingredients were either canned, will be made fresh (pizza dough) or will last a long time (you can keep butternut squash in a cool, dark place–i.e. your refrigerator–for weeks at a time)
  • Allow a mid-month stop to buy more fresh fruit—but still plan wisely…and don’t impulse-buy!
  • Buy the staples like bread and milk in bulk. You can freeze what you know you won’t use for a few weeks.
  • Just because I’m only shopping once and avoiding eating out does not mean I’m feeling deprived of my favorite treats. In fact, not only have I been a lot better about not stopping at Starbucks and QT, but I’ve also been learning to get more creative in making treats. Things like pumpkin spice lattes, which cost $4 easily at Starbucks, but just a few cents if I make it at home. Or iced tea…I planned the items needed from the beginning, so I don’t have an excuse to skip over to QT for some sweet tea. 🙂
  • Desserts? I stocked up on the basics (flour, sugar, butter, etc.), so I’m free to experiment (as seen in my random quiche crust!)
  • Most importantly, do not limit yourself, but use this as an opportunity to get creative and experiment with what you already have.
  • However, if something comes up and you absolutely need an item from the store, go get it! If you run out of olive oil, don’t try to experiment with something else (that could be bad). Go get the olive oil. Just make sure you’re getting it for the best price and don’t buy anything else!
I’ll be sure to communicate anything else I learn along the way, but for now…we’re only one month in and still going strong! Heck, with all of the holidays coming up, I may not have to go grocery shopping until January!


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