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Food Stamp Challenge Day 26: Change

When I looked out the window this morning I was struck by how brilliant the blue was in the sky, accenting the changing colors of the leaves all around us. At the same time I was hit with the inordinate change that we have been going through in the last month.

tree colors

The food stamp challenge itself has been a tremendous shift in both thought and action for us. Even though we already considered ourselves in the upper echelon of frugal types, we don’t look at shopping the same way anymore. I see every component in a meal on a per-serving basis now and try to come up with even more creative ways to use lower cost alternatives to achieve the same flavors and add some nutritional value when I can.

John’s pain lead to several doctor visits, medical tests, hospital stays, procedures and now this time tomorrow we will be at the hospital and with any luck, John will already be out of surgery to repair his back.

I was in a car accident that totaled the car. Thankfully I was relatively unhurt, but the timing could not have been any worse – the accident happened while John was in the hospital. We had to deal with the ridiculous accident reporting system in the state of Alabama, deal with insurance, rent a car, deal with insurance, seek out and purchase a new car, deal with insurance.

We had a visit from an out-of-town friend that was a beautiful break in the midst of the chaos and to be honest it may have been the first time that either of us really laughed in a long time.

The formation of my business was finally complete in October as well. That lead to the need for completing forms, opening accounts, filling out licenses, documentation, tax papers…

That’s a lot of change we have gone through in a very short period. I caught myself saying that I’d be glad when this challenge was over and as I type this I can’t help but to have tears in my eyes. I am ready to end the administrative aspect of the challenge, sure. The rest of it has been an important part of changing our lives and the way we think.

We have 5 days left, part of which will be spent in the hospital. To those who have decried us for not having a realistic enough challenge because of this or that, I think that if you look back over what we have overcome in this month – and the change we are in the midst of still dealing with – you’ll see that this has been a lot more real than anyone could have imagined.

We purchased sugar from our pre-challenge pantry at the current sale price of $1.99 with a $0.50 off coupon that we have on hand.

sugar 4 lb. bag 1.62 [P, C]    
C: Coupon P: Price Match R: Reduced D: Damaged  





SNACK: $0.32
cereal with milk

Sweet Potato & Carrot Soup

LUNCH: $0.45

hamburger steak (leftovers from Day 25)

DINNER: $2.99
breaded tilapia
French fries

  • Consumed Today: 5.11 [+3.89 for the day]
  • Consumed To Date (week): 19.79 [+25.21 for the week]
  • Consumed To Date (month): 113.74 [+111.35 for the month]
  • Spent To Date: 213.41
  • Remaining Balance: $65.77

QUESTION OF THE DAY: What (if anything) have you learned from this challenge and what (if anything) have you not seen that you would have liked to?

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