*Brain Candy In Your Food Storage*
It's late November in eastern Tennessee. That means it's dripping rain and 33 degrees at dawn. Nine months ago the secondary breadwinner of the household got cut back to 20 hours/week. Four months ago the primary breadwinner got cut back to 30 hours/week. Two months ago the secondary breadwinner got laid off.
Behind each of two doors in front of you are two different menus for the day.
Behind Door Number 1:
- Breakfast - whole wheat flatbread with a small bit of honey
- Lunch - whole wheat flatbread left over from breakfast
- Dinner - whole wheat flatbread and beans
Behind Door Number 2:
- Breakfast - whole wheat biscuits with strawberry jam
- Lunch - leftover biscuits from breakfast (but you're told dinner will be at 2:30)
- Dinner - baked glazed ham with pineapple pieces, candied sweet potatoes, lima beans, cheesecake with cherry topping.
What time of year did I say it was?? OK, which one sounds more like a Thanksgiving dinner to you??
In a situation where the world as we know it has ended (or at least taken a long leave-of-absence) we'll need to look after the emotional needs (and I mean needs) of our families. The difference between the two daily menus above is only:
1 Small Jar Strawberry Jam 1 Can Baking Powder 1 lb Butter-Flavor Crisco 1 Small Canned Ham 2 Cans Sweet Potatoes 1 Box Brown Sugar 1 Small Can Pineapple Tidbits 2 Cans Lima Beans 1 Box No-Cook Cheesecake 1 Can Cherry Pie Filling
or about $20 in Jun 2009! If the world is getting nasty for you & your family, that may very well be the smartest $20 you've spent in a long time.
I heartily recommend you look at a few items you can inexpensively add to your food preps which will make a tremendous difference in your family's emotional health. Here are some things we do in addition to the Thanksgiving dinner above:
Hard Candy: We hit a clearance on Grandma candy (the mixed hard candies Grandma had in a dish in the parlor) for $1 a bag. We sealed them in mylar bags in 4-oz packages Custom Sized Mylar Pouches. We made enough for one-a-month plus one each birthday for a year, plus a few for emergency needs.
Favorite Foods: So you're saving some cans of (whatever) or jars of jelly. Make sure you get a few of each person's favorite item or flavor.
Recipes: While you experiment with using your storage foods on a daily basis (you are experimenting, aren't you?), notice the ones which are the biggest hits. Experiment extra on those and use them for special occasions.
Spices: I defy you to find a chemical-nutritional reason for spices in most foods. Yet the fact remains that flavor is a critical element to success in cooking. Bend to reality and store at least some ingredients to recreate old favorite dishes and to help the acceptance of the new stuff.
Activities: Our girls used to love to make cookies as a family (as teenagers it's not cool, but...). We keep a few makings for cookies, and plan to use a cookie bake (maybe in a dutch oven) to defuse tension when things go bad.
Get inventive; you know what works for you. Think about this and you'll come up with great ideas.
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