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Don’t you love taking a peek into the life of someone else? If you said yes, I’d say you are not alone. Just take a look at all of the ‘reality’ shows on TV (okay, I have to say I don’t really think those are ‘reality’ but hey, that is how they are marketed).
At Real Food for Less Money we’ve been trying to have our own peeks into other’s lives. My family has what we call experience week in which we live in Someone Else’s Shoes for a week or two. The first experience was Working Full Time and Real Foods. The second experience was based on the monetary guidelines of USDA Thrifty Food Plan but with real food. Later this month we will have another experience showing how Real Foods can fit into a different scenario. I’m not going to tell you what that experience will be just yet, but I will tell you this will be based both on money and organization/time. I think you will really like it!
As a partner piece to my families experience weeks with Someone Else’s Shoes, I’ll have periodic interviews with real people. We’ll learn about these people in their actual shoes! Real food enthusiasts on their own journey. These journey’s will look very different from each other but have many similarities (I suspect).
Life in Lea’s Shoes
Millie (Real Food for Less Money): Describe your ‘typical’ day.
Lea: I try to sleep in until 8 if I can. I’d love to be able to get up at 6 or 7am, but not when I’m up until 11pm! I get up, make breakfast for the kids and I and we take our supplements. We do Bible reading, then I make my husband’s breakfast. Then it’s chore time. My daughter will unload the dishwasher while my son and I go pick eggs.
By now I’ve already started up my laptop and done a quick look at my e-mail and important things, but after picking eggs I am able to take a better look. Before I know it, it’s lunch time and time to eat again.
Most of the year we’ll have done some schoolwork by now, and finish after lunch, but we only have a couple of chapter of science to read, so things are pretty low-key for a month until we start the next year.
The afternoon is when I get my best time to be online and work on my website and post on my Facebook page as the kids play and/or watch a movie.
Then it’s time to make dinner, then clean the kitchen, then a little free time before we brush our teeth and have family devotions before my son goes to bed at 7:30. My daughter generally stays up until 8:30, and sometimes we’ll play Yahtzee or a card game before she goes to bed. Then I get my quiet, uninterrupted online time until 10. Thursday nights around 9pm we’ll watch CSI from the night before, and Saturday we’ll watch CSI:NY and Blue Bloods from Friday night. Then I make something for my husband and I to eat, and I go to bed between 10:30 and 11.
My busiest day away from home is Wednesday. I do my major grocery shopping every other Wednesday, as that is the day my daughter has gymnastics from Sept-June. Monday afternoons we visit a neighbor’s house – they are like grandparents to my children. Twice a week (usually Tuesday or Thursday and Saturday) my afternoons are focused on baking things like bread, keeping up with the peanut butter cookies (my husband’s only carb treat) and pumpkin cookies or other more healthier snacks for the week.
Millie: Do you attach a label to the way you eat?
Lea: I hate labels! I am in line with the Nourishing Traditions way of eating, and although I have come a long way, I still have areas I want to work on (ferments, for example). My husband is diabetic and doesn’t eat carbs, so I usually make two dinners a night – one for him, one for the kids and I. I use Cooking Traditional Food’s menu mailers for my dinners.
Millie: What is your biggest obstacle to your food journey?
Lea: We live just under an hour away from stores, and so it’s hard to not grab a quick burger or taco when we’re out. I need to get better at prepping food to take with us, cuz it sure is more nutritious!
Millie: How do you overcome this obstacle?
Lea: I will let you know when I do LOL
Millie: My family strives for a ratio of 85% real/whole/traditional foods. Do you have a ratio or other way of tracking that you strive for in your family?
Lea: We eat well when we’re home. I mentioned above we tend to grab fast food (I am cringing, but am working on this one) when we’re out for 8 hours a day every other week. I bake everything I can from scratch, and do well avoiding prepared foods in the grocery store. My weakness is the occasional package of Oreos…
Millie: In your own food journey, do you consider yourself a novice, intermediate or advanced?
Lea: That would depend. At least intermediate. Some people view me as advanced, but I don’t feel that I am personally because I know there are plenty of women around me who I can learn a lot from. I know I have room to grow.
I have been cooking from scratch since I was 12, so there are some areas that I have mastered, but I would also like to be able to venture into sourdough and hamburger rolls. We don’t often have bread just for bread’s sake as I feel it’s just extra carbs with no nutritional value except the butter you put on it LOL So when I do need hamburger rolls, I tend to just buy them. I do grind my own flour and make my own bread and baked goods, sauerkraut, yogurt, butter, peanut butter, and mayo…but would love to master kefir and sourdough.
I had kombucha going for a couple of years a few years ago, but when I learned it’s not recommended if you have amalgam fillings, I stopped making it.
Millie: What is your one Standard food? The “must have” that you always keep on hand?
Lea: Oh, I hate picking just one. I can never do that. I’ll just say coconut oil.
Millie: Do you have any final tips or tricks that you would like to share with Real Food for Less Money readers?
Lea: Make chicken broth! It’s the easiest thing you can make and it is packed with nutritional value. Baby steps! Tackle one thing at a time. It’s totally a process to convert from mainstream foods to traditional foods. Start with one thing you may eat regularly, and make it on your own so you can control the ingredients. My husband eats 7 eggs a day so we made having our own chickens a priority.
Millie: Would you share a one day food journal with us?
Breakfast: scrambled eggs (our own eggs) with cheese, or egg casserole Glass of water with: 1 scoop Antioxidant Omega-3 “Berry” Greens and 1 scoop Life Essence multi (powder). My kids get ½ scoop each plus 3 Tiny Tabs. 2 alfalfa tablets for me, 1 for each of my kids 2 Organ Delights for me, 1 for my daughter (too big for my son) 1 tsp FCLO/BO 1 ounce Seven+ PROformance, ½ ounce for my kids when they beg hard enough LOL
Lunch: usually leftover soup, or an egg salad sandwich, sometimes sesame-sunflower crackers with salmon dip Snack: Pumpkin Cookie, veggies dipped in sour cream mixed with whatever spices my daughter throws in, a banana, occasionally popcorn, sesame bites
Dinner: whatever is next in Back to Basics’ menu mailer, or leftovers from the night before. Occasionally we eat out (once a month or so) or I am pressed for time and throw hot dogs on. My husband’s typical dinner is steak, wild rice with butter, steamed green veggy with butter, salad, and cottage cheese. Water through the day, always with a ½ slice of lemon.
Before-bedtime snack: yogurt with chia seeds, crushed walnuts, ground cinnamon and cloves.
Thank you Lea! It is great to get to know you better.
Would you like to be featured in this series of interviews for Someone Else’s Shoes? You do not need a blog or website. You can be brand spanking new to this journey or an ‘old hat’ (I’m not calling you old…), I’d love to interview you! Email me at realfoodforlessmoney at gmail dot com.
Lea shared her biggest obstacle in her real food journey. What is your biggest obstacle?
See all posts in this interview series.