Monday, December 15, 2008

Comfort Zone Issues

Pin It Now! I have many comfort zones, but recently I have been forced to step out of one of them-- My Fry's Comfort Zone.

Fry's is my local grocery store (otherwise known as Kroger) conveniently located 2 minutes from my house. Even though it is rather new, I can navigate this enormous store like a pro, mostly due to the fact that I rarely peruse the inner isles. I spend an ample amount of time in the produce section carefully selecting a rainbow of beautifully colored fruits and veggies loaded with natural goodness. Then, I usually camp out in the healthy/organic section for a while loading up my cart. I do appreciate the modern convenience of prepackaged foods, but I want them to be as healthy as possible--no artificial colors, preservatives, additives, hydrogenated oils etc... Anyway, my point is that I am not as familiar with the rest of the store. All that has had to change as of October 29th.

Last week I had the privilege of joining the WIC club, which was a whole other Comfort Zone Issue, but anyway, I got the brilliant idea that I would take my kids to the store with me to purchase the items on my WIC voucher. While I am thankful for the extra help during this difficult time, the foods listed on the WIC voucher are government approved not ME approved. It is no secret that the government and I sing to a different tune when it comes to health. Okay so, the cereals listed on my voucher are not the ones I typically buy, in fact, I don't even go down the major cereal isle at our store--man, is it huge!! Took me a minute to even find the cereals I could purchase. In this isle, I keep telling myself that a bowl of Cornflakes is better than a bowl of nothing. And as for juice, we normally just have not-from-concentrate oj for breakfast. My kids drink water the rest of the day, but WIC says I can buy 3 containers of Juicy Juice. It's free, so it goes into the cart. Oh yeah, the kids are excited about it. I think the milk that I had to buy was by far the most difficult for me to put in the cart. My only choice, according to WIC, was 1% inorganic milk. I won't even go into my views on milk here, but I definitely don't buy 1%, and I don't buy anything but organic. Even further, I rarely even buy milk from the store at all. I buy it organic and RAW from a real dairy farm!!!!!!

After I have found all of my WIC items--it was sort of like a treasure hunt, only not as fun--I decided to cave in and buy some Kraft macaroni and cheese b/c it was on sale for $.50 a box. When your food budget has been cut by more than half, you just do what you have to do, so there I was in search of this product. I couldn't find it, and all the while my kiddos are trying to keep up, son #1 keeps accidentally bumping into son #2 who is on foot b/c his sister won't let him get into the cart shaped like a motor vehicle. Kids are fidgety, mom's about to snap, and the grocery shopping experience turns sour all b/c I wasn't able to stay in my cozy little corner of the store!!!!!!

Lessons learned: Stop breaking my vow of only shopping ALONE and starvation is just as unhealthy as eating Cornflakes and Kraft mac & cheese. Okay, okay starvation is much worse than what I just wrote.

I am determined to be thankful for the food that is in my pantry and that my kids are not going hungry even if I have very strong opinions regarding the health of that food.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Brandi-We've had to cut back, too...thought you'd like to know that after following a bunch of NT links I found out that unless you buy raw milk (which I cannot find here), organic is a waste of money. When it comes to milk it is the hormones you must try and avoid. Also google fruits and veggies that don't matter whether they are organic. I know times are tough...but God knows your heart for healthy children and I know He can protect them. Keep on keeping on. At least you are getting to know the store because you are buying new things...not because you have to work there :)!!!!!!!
Gina

Terri said...

Why does eating healthy have to cost so much more than junk food? I don't buy all the organic stuff but even fruits are so much more expensive.
I also do Angel Food Ministries. If you go online and check out the website you can find where they are located. Anybody can do it. Each month you can put in an order for $30 and you get a basket full of different foods - chicken, rice, etc.. the menu changes each month but there is a lot of food there and we have found it to be really good. It may not be all the organic foods but it really helps the grocery budget and feeding your family.

not up to code said...

We have managed to eat a box or two of Tuna Helper and lived to talk about it! For a buck fifty you can't beat it. It's even kinda yummy.

AutumnFawn said...

I use the term "organic" pretty loosely. For me it incorporates everything from hormones, pesticides, additives--anything unnatural. Honestly,even before all this, I couldn't afford everything organic, but I still lived by a certain code of health. I have spent years researching about so many different things, and I am just feeling like it was all in vain. I know it isn't true, I am just frustrated right now.
Thanks for all the encouraging words, though. I really do appreciate them.

T-Bone said...

After dating John for almost four years, and watching his dad lose his job twice, once for about 6 months through the christmas holidays and another time for slightly longer than that, I can testify that kids will take unhealthy food over starving any day of the week. John's mom was very into organic and natural and unprocessed as well, to the point they ground their own corn, and wheat and made their own bread. But when you have ten mouths to feed an no income, it comes down to whats filling and can be afforded. There was a lot of homemade bread, a lot of rice, a lot of pasta noodles and a LOT of eggs and cheese in that house.
Eating eggs for three meals a day will teach you to be grateful about a lot of things. .....it will also make you HATE eggs.

T-Bone said...

On another note, I have comfort zone issues in grocery stores. But mine more involve people who feel the need to stand on top of you in line at the check out. HELLO IF I CAN SMELL YOU OR TOUCH YOU YOU ARE TOO CLOSE!!! freaks me out. Makes me want to scream

HONEY said...

Awe shucks...anyone who's never had the privilege of living on powdered milk, government cheese & "farina"...well, ya just haven't really lived yet! LOL!!!

No "Kraft" anything in those boxes. Just a white label with black letters. Organic? Ha!Ha!Ha! Only words on those boxes were "DryMilk", "Cheese", "Farina".
Believe me...your kids will live & so will you. The key is flexibility...if we don't bend - we break...

Last but not least..."This too shall pass"...and you will look back & laugh about it. That, I can promise! Many of us have "been there, done that"...and looking back..yes, we laugh. Some of us still hate "farina" & others hate "eggs" or "cheese"...but we do have some good laughs about it. :-)

No matter how desperate times got, all I had to do to cheer myself right up was to think "St. Jude". Yep, I would gladly keep my circumstances (& my government issued dry milk, cheese & farina) than trade places with any parent at St. Jude. (God bless 'em all!)

So load up those young 'uns & cruise the grocery store aisle in search of new "gastronomic adventures" Ha! It could be worse...much worse! It's all about perspective, eh? :-)

Signed: Ate government food & lived to tell about it!

Jane Anne said...

I just wanted to thank you for your post. I enjoyed it- the honestly of it all. I am being challenged with grocery shopping, too. I am trying out generic brands (giving up organic milk *sigh*), clipping coupons, trying out meatless meals and trying to only buy necessities. It seems so hard sometimes but when I keep it all in perspective, I have much to be thankful for.

AutumnFawn said...

Honey-- you are so funny and right!!! Trust me I think the very same thing that at least my kids are whole and healthy. I plan to still post on our little not so fun adventure, but I do know that this is a small trial compared to what it could be. As long as my family is safe and healthy, I think I can get through anything!!!

AutumnFawn said...

Oh,and what is farina--never heard of it.

HONEY said...

"Farina" is "Cream of Wheat" minus the nice brand name & colorful box. If I never eat it again, that will be just fine by me! :-) Let me guess...your husband probably does not care for it either? I don't think anyone in our family likes that! LOL!

You've got the right idea...keep focused on the positives & the negatives will be easier to bare!

Jane Anne said...

Stopping back by- thanks for the comment on my family blog. I just wanted to let you know that I write more on Gravity of Motion. The Owen Home blog is mostly pictures of the kids for our family that is far away. I think I "met" you because of my son's peanut allergy. You may have commented when I wrote the 'What I would life for you to know' post for Rocks in My Dryer.

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