Friday, January 25, 2013

Inspired

I don't spend a lot of time on my blog. I write more in my head than I ever get down on the keyboard. But it is really a little gift from God, like manna from heaven, when someone says something nice about it. I had a friend of mine at MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) tell me I had inspired her to try not eating out for the month of February. It was wonderful to hear this from her. If someone inspires you, let them know! In fact, this may be one of the projects that we do as a family. I know she can do this! Her kids are much younger than mine so she will be establishing some good habits.

None of us start out to find bad habits though do we? We drift from good habits to bad ones. Hebrews 2:1 says "So we must listen very carefully to the truth we have heard, or we may drift away from it." (thank you Lisa Harper for writing Holding Out for a Hero: A New Spin on Hebrews).  Now, eating out is not a sin.  It's not bad.  But for my family, it had become a bad habit.  Many of the 'projects' we are doing this year are a result of drifting into bad habits.  And each of these projects is not about what we 'do' or what we 'don't do'.  It's about the intentionality of our lives.  It's about what I am letting God teach me and my family while we add or take away something from our lives.  

Be intentional.  Don't drift!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Not prepared!

We had our first day of not really being prepared!  I let the kids pack the snacks for our field trip to the local history museum class.  That was my first mistake.  They didn't pack a whole lot of things.  My second mistake was letting the kids have the snack bag in the back of the car.  They ate it all before we got there.  Well, they did leave some raisins and fruit gummies.  That would have been fine but this history class was hot and stuffy and boring!  I got a headache and then felt my blood sugar dropping.  When we got in the car I gorged on raisins and fruit snacks.  Next time I will check the contents of the snack bag before we get in the car and I will be keeping it in the front seat!

We are definitely running out of food by Sunday night.  I have to make sure I hid some things from the kids so we can 'pace' our consumption.  They aren't happy with me tonight because they are going to a movie night at church.  It's free to go to, but they sell pizza and snacks there.  We went to the grocery store though and got some goodies!  They will survive without cold pizza and hot soda.  ;)

The biggest win in this situation has been my husband's reaction.  He told me today that when the month is over he doesn't want to go back to the way we did things before.  We decided that when we do go out to eat it will be more intentional.  We will go out once a week, or maybe less.  We can take turns choosing where we go.  We will try new places and have new experiences.  As a family.  Not as individuals running through a drive-thru on the way to something else!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Half Way

Well, we are about half way through our 'experiment' on not eating out.  It's been interesting and surprising.  It has been easier in some ways.  Of course we aren't spending money on eating out but we are definitely spending more at the grocery store.  The major thing is that we don't go anywhere.  Well, not exactly true.  But we were spending A LOT of time in the car running to get something to eat.  My son even commented that he had more time to play.  Truth be told, I was using that as an escape.  When things became difficult, I would just put everyone in the car and drive to Sonic.  1/2 hour gone.  Being at home all day with both kids can be trying sometimes.  Now, I'm learning to deal with the conflict instead of running from it!

I've also had to help my daughter learn that she CAN eat something at home.  Previously, she would say she wasn't hungry and then we would get in the car and 10 minutes later she was starving!  She's learning to eat at home or at least take a snack with her.

There are times however when we will be gone from home for 3-4 hours at a time.  I've had to plan for this.  It's not bad though.  I figure that spending 10 minute packing some snacks and drinks is STILL so much easier than having to walk miles for clean water.  I'll take the planning.

The best part is that my "Panera Bread" potato soup has passed the test for my son!  He said it is as good as the restaurant's.  It's his new favorite meal!  I've experimented some in the kitchen.  Started meal planning a little more.  I've still got to figure out the snack thing.  I've also got to drink more water.  Even though I was drinking soda, it had a lot of ice that was melting into water that I was drinking.

Finally, I'm more grateful for the food we have.  I think my children are too.  THAT alone has been worth the journey!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

My #1 tip

I love to organize.  I organize things when I'm stressed.  It's a gift.  And a curse.  I've helped people reorganize their homes and I really enjoy it.  This time of year, I know many of you are looking at organizing your house.  It's a great time to do it!  It's cold and dark so you are probably stuck inside.

The BEST way to organize is to get rid of stuff.  You DO NOT want to spend time organizing things that you don't need.  So HOW do you get rid of stuff without spending hours doing it?  Get a box or laundry basket.  Find a place in your house to put it.  This is your 'Goodwill' basket (or whatever charity you like to donate to).  Every time you run across something that needs to exit the house, put it in the basket.  To step it up a notch, spend a few minutes every day getting rid of 7 things.  Put them in the basket.  When the basket is full, put it in your car for the next time you pass by the charity of choice.  Without much work, you are lightening your load!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Four days in

Four days in and we have had a revolt.  I did NOT expect this.  This morning the turtle had a meltdown over breakfast.  He didn't want anything we had.  He looked at me and said "Can't we just go to McDonald's!??!"  There were tears.  There was yelling.  There were threats of going back to bed for the day.  So, I took a breath and decided that we needed to pray through this one.  We prayed to be grateful for the food that we have.  Then he got up and decided that Honey Nut Cheerios weren't the worst thing in the whole world.  Crisis averted.  Until the afternoon.

On the way back from an errand this afternoon, the monkey said "Can we get Chick-fil-A?"
"No, honey, we are going home."
"But I'm HUNGRY!"
"It's ok, we are going to be home in 5 minutes."
"But I'm STARVING!"
"No, you aren't." *sigh*

My kids are pretty strong willed.  Lucky for them, I'm stronger.  So we drove home.  See, this is why we needed to do this?  We think that food should just always be instantly available.  My kids have come to think of this as normal.  They think everything is fast, immediately available, and endless.  I think they were going through a little withdrawal.   Lucky for us, we had a cub scout event that had free pizza tonight!  Yippee for us!  After all, I'm not giving up junk food-just the ever present supply of it.

Next week will probably not be any easier.  We have a LOT on the schedule.  I've got to plan a good bit since there are days where we are out of the house for HOURS!

I am learning to feel blessed when I walk to the pantry and have food to fix.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Day one-we made it.  Although this morning my sweet husband started to go out to grab me 44 oz of deliciousness.  Then he remembered he wasn't supposed to.  Haha!  We did have a huge Christmas/New Year's dinner at our house with my side of the family so it didn't really enter my mind.  But we start school tomorrow.  It can be difficult to stay home with the kids ALL DAY with no where to go.  Hmmm, library field trip?

But seriously, there are some things that I hope to get out of this 'experiment'.
-I hope to appreciate that we have food in our house.  I want to constantly remember that it is a blessing to have clean water and a working kitchen to cook in.  I read an article from CNN that stated the average woman in a third world country walks 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) a day to collect water.  Yes, I am blessed.

-I'm not sure if we will save money or not.  In theory, eating at home should be cheaper.  But of course, I have to buy more groceries.

-I'd like to see my jeans get looser but I won't hold my breath!