An update to my challenge: My NO Spend Pantry Challenge with Meal Ideas.

I spontaneously left for a week when our sons made it to the  Pop Warner National Championship. Life was a hectic whirlwind when we arrived home.

I hadn’t gone grocery shopping, yet had no desire to prioritize it. We had frozen milk, meat and veggies all waiting in the freezer, so I went another complete week without grocery shopping after arriving home. I seriously didn’t think it could be done, but it was, and our monthly grocery bill was nearly non existent.

I saved so much money on my groceries from using what I already had on hand and not rushing to fill the fridge back up.

Now, I have been challenged to an Eat from your Pantry” (and freezer) month with my good blogging friends.  What – a whole month, you say?

Attempting  to avoid grocery shopping as much as possible, eat out of the pantry, freezer and fridge while getting creative when my children complain, “Mom, there’s nothing to eat,” allows me to take stock of what I already have,  save hundreds of dollars at the same time by not rushing unnecessarily to the store, while still encouraging a heart of gratitude in our children.

This is going to be a challenge, trust me. I’m a bit nervous about committing to you, but I have two pantries that are bulging from my stockpiling of  free, and nearly free foods from coupons (Are coupons worth it…yes, they are.) The point of my pantry foods is to use them, but first I need to keep them organized and rotated,  which I haven’t done lately (as witnessed below.)

eatingfromthepantry

Since we are still in the middle of our very long, but always growing unemployment “God Watch,” and have already whittled our expenses down to the bare bones, this will be a wonderful way to use what we have and be better stewards with what I am cooking for our family.

Being without a job is pushing my faith, as well as my creativity.

My goals:

  1. To spend only $200 on groceries during the month of January on fresh produce and dairy as necessary.
  2. Get together with my sister in law twice for a bulk freezer/baking day. It’s always more fun when done with a friend.
  3. Assign individual meals to each child for which they have complete meal making responsiblity (Five children…five days of the week). This will help eliminate the “There’s nothing to eat” dilemma, and they will master 2-4 recipes.
  4. Share and deliver baskets of food  to the new homeless camp that we have been introduced to.

(OH MY…my husband made me edit my first goal to $100..YIKES…nervousness sets in…)

So would you like to join me in this challenge?

There are no right or wrong ways to do this. Do what works best for your family. That may mean just beginning with a one week challenge to dig deep into those cupboards, take stock of what is hiding, and use what you have on hand. It requires a bit more time, but it will be well worth the re-organizing in the end.

I’ll be updating through out the month, and would love to hear what you’re doing as well. We can encourage each other along this road and see where we end up. It could be interesting. 🙂

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