Sunday, March 8, 2009

Day 8- $1 a day

Some people are interested in the logistics of my experiment, so I will indulge you by sharing what I am eating. Here’s a photo that shows my basics- pasta, potatoes, carrots, onions, kiwis, tea bags, brown rice, Top Ramen, peanut butter sandwiches, oatmeal, olive oil and vegetable oil for cooking, and not pictured are black beans which I recently made into a soup. I keep everything on my kitchen table so I can easily see what is fair game and so I will not be tempted by the other food in my cupboards. It’s best not to see the artichoke hearts, honey, chocolate chips, Marionberry preserves, etc. on the shelves.

I’m only 8 days into the experiment, but I’m surprised by how much fresh food I have been able to buy. Special produce deals have supplied me with a 10 pound bag of potatoes for $1.97, a bag of kiwis for $1.50 (which comes to about 7 cents per kiwi), and of course the infamous 5 pounds of carrots for 99 cents.

I’ve spent about $20 up front to have some things on hand to cook and prepare. Some things are gone already—like the beans—but most things will last for a couple more weeks, and then I can buy another round of staples. I find it’s also wise to stay out of stores as much as possible. Why visit Disneyland when you can’t go on the rides?


  1. as i was at rainbow grocery today, i found myself comparing my purchases to your experiment. this was after spending $8 on breakfast this morning, which is 8 days of food for you right now. i asked myself why i thought it was important to be at the organic store vs. the much cheaper safeway. couldn't that money be going somewhere else? but don't i want to invest in organic and local foods? wow, quite a conflict. what do i value more saving money, saving earth or both?

    as i walked out of the grocery store, there was a man asking for spare change. at first i just walked past him and then after contemplating my $8 breakfast i had to go back and hand him a few dollars. i had great appreciation for being able to take myself to breakfast, something that you are choosing not to do right now and something some people never have a choice at doing.

    thanks for making me think more about how i am spending my $$$.

  2. yes, yes, and yes! vicki! you managed to put at least 5 important issues all in one comment. organic vs. cheaper? values. charity. appreciation. mindfulness. I love it! And thanks for sharing your thought processes.

  3. But Vicki have you noticed that the 'much cheaper Safeway' ain't so cheap lately? The price of food, even staples is so outrageous of late. I don't know how poor families do it.