Money-Saving Tip 1

I’m not big into organic foods, whole foods, saving the planet, or even saving money. Why? Time, mostly. Placement of impulse buys, mostly. But I do what I can.

Today’s money-saving tip is also a great planet-saver:

Purchase reusable containers.

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We eat a lot of sandwiches around here, because the boys attend a charter school with an über expensive hot lunch. About 3 years and a few hundred sandwich bags ago, I decided Mother Earth could use fewer plastic bags thrown away.

The variety of reusable sandwich containers pictured are also BPA-free and probably contain X% recycled materials. I bought them off Amazon and they do the trick.

I recycle and reuse as much as I have time and money for. If we all do at least that, I’m sure the world will be a cleaner place.

 

©2019 Chelsea Owens

There’s Nothing to Eat

Ev’ry meal, no matter when
No matter what
No matter who;

No matter where the kids have been
Or what they’ve et
Or what I do;

Or how the kitchen’s full of food
Since I just shopped
Since I just spent;

Since I just barely fed my brood
They’ll drain my stock
They’ll still lament;

They’ll still stand there, in fridge’s heat
And say, “But Mom, there’s nothing to eat.”

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Photo Credit:
Image by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay

 

©2019 Chelsea Owens

Food Tip 3

I’ve grown lazier in my later years, due to a combination of waaaaaay too much work to do, hormone levels dropping with age, capability levels of children rising with (their) age, and a penchant for staying up late to have me time.

No worries; this is my food tip for today:

Buy stuff the kids can make and eat themselves.

Last week I recommended you purchase ingredients that can be used in many meals. While you’re picking those up, make sure you buy some pieces of simple lunches and breakfasts for the kids.

All my boys can make most of the meals I listed in my “Cheapest, Bestest” series of recipes; plus cereal, toast, sandwiches, Ramen, macaroni and cheese, and …chips when they’re snacking like squirrels and I have to remind them to make an actual meal.

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Heck; I’ll even pick up Costco muffins, Gogurt, applesauce, bagels, Lunchables, and re-heatable frozen meals like burritos.

They feel proud for ‘making’ something and you feel relieved they’re eating ‘healthy.’ Besides that, you’re teaching them important life skills. Good job, parents.

 

Photo Credit:
Image by EdMontez from Pixabay

Food Tip 2

My children love peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. It’s their standard fare for school lunches and snacks.

They are also in charge of making said lunches each morning. In order to help the process run smoothly, I keep all the materials they need within easy reach. In order to help me not have a lot of mess to clean up afterwards, I opt for plastics.

Use plastics!

I’m not referring to BPA-free, recycled, overpriced sandwich and snack containers, either -though we do happen to have those. I refer to the jars of jam and peanut butter.

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I recall a time in my childhood when my mother was bringing the groceries in from the car. I wanted to help. I grabbed a brown paper sack and began the long walk across our cement garage… only to have the edge of the bag rip in my hands. *CRASH!* It turned out that my bag had our newly-purchased jar of peanut butter in the bottom. Yes, it was good that the mess was contained. Yes, it was a waste of money and groceries because glass permeated the contents of the bag.

So stick with plastics! Save the world and your sanity and enjoy delicious sandwiches in the process.

A Very Unmerry Birthday to You

Yesterday was my birthday. As a mother, that meant the day ran about the same as all the others but my kids and husband wanted me to be happy. Act happy. Look excited. Smile more (well, at all). Eagerly anticipate what household object they had gift-wrapped.

In short, I needed to be as excited as the boys all feel when it’s their birthday.

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Like most events in life, however, I dread my birthday. I don’t like being the spotlight. I’m not a fun present un-wrapper. I’m not the life of the party. When birthdays or Mother’s Day roll around, I’d rather not be here to celebrate. This desire confuses and hurts my family.

The problem is that the day is still a day. My day of birth was a Saturday this year; but, when it’s a weekday; I still have carpool, cleaning, sports classes, dinner, dishes, bedtime, and attempts to bond as a couple.

The problem is that my entire life is to anticipate the whims of the house and its occupants and cater to them to avoid nuclear meltdown. Everyone else’s needs come first and I feel shallow thinking about myself.

The problem is, like with most events, I need to ask for what I want in order to receive it -and I feel bad for having wants in the first place. I’ve crumpled up and trashed anything resembling innermost desires; and feel like an indecent, filthy street beggar pawing through something molding when asked about them.

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Why? That doesn’t seem healthy. Perhaps it’s not.

Acknowledging the problem or even testing out the whole “asking for what I want” thing doesn’t erase the guilt. Again, though, why not? And, more specifically, how can we erase the guilt? Lobotomy?

Frankly, I’ve spent the last few years in an intentional haze of semi-tiredness (very like a lobotomy) in order to avoid some of these bothersome feelings. I’ve numbed to avoid sadness and empty despair and hopelessness. I’ve pretended contentment and ignored myself in order to function.

*Sigh*

Birthdays don’t have to be so heavy and serious, of course. I actually only cried because I wanted to a little yesterday. Then, my sister planned a surprise mani/pedi appointment and my mother took me to lunch afterwards. My husband, for his part, took the children and the housework for the day.

In all, even my Eeyore side had to agree that it was a good birthday.

Now, if I could just get over how guilty I feel that everyone did all that for me…

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Sunday, March 17: “The Magic Clothes Washing Machine,” my scientific observations of what the clothes washer produces.

Monday, March 18: Wrote a poem for The Bloggers Bash competition titled, “Five More Minutes.”

Tuesday, March 19: Shared a quote by Christie Mellor.

Wednesday, March 20: Whispered my super secret tip about bread preservation.

Thursday, March 21: “In Case of Emergency, Interrupt.” Never ignore The Look.

Friday, March 22: Advised against Super Momming in “Pinterest Mom or Sane Parent?

Saturday, March 23: Shared Unfiltered Mama‘s tweet about difficult kids.

Sunday, March 24: Today! Yay!

 

Photo Credit:
Jorge Ibanez
Jiroe
Rune Enstad