Thursday, September 29, 2011

Extreme Couponing Envy

Extreme couponing = extreme envy.  When I watch this show I am slightly contemplating getting a binder and sitting at a table with my 4 children cutting through a sea coupons.  It's a great way to develop fine motor skills by the way.  Images of grocery trips lined with buggy after buggy of toilet paper and barbecue sauce dance around in my head.  Then reality (my 17 month old) smacks me in the head. There is no way I would have that much time to devote to something so extreme, but maybe I am saying this because I have never gotten thousands of dollars worth of food for FREE.

I love these women's commitment to finding free ways to feed their family.  I love the idea of making lists, creating a binder with sections, pockets, zippers, secret codes etc...  Okay the secret code thing was made up.  And- the stock piles.  (That's where the envy begins for me.)  I would love to go into a storage room with neatly lined shelves of toilet paper with labels facing gloriously at me.  Who wouldn't?  On some level it reminds me of people who have bunkers in the event of war or something.  That thought doesn't hang around long though.

To be honest, I have my own extreme shopping addiction.  Cereal boxes.  Since staying at Libby's house for almost a month this summer I started craving a shelf of neatly lined cereal boxes.  Don't ask me why but I just like the look of it.  So now I can't stop buying cereal when it is on sale.  By the way we only eat cold cereal once a week.  So these babies are sticking around for a long time.

I am also obsessed with price matching.  I have utilized charts, iPhone apps and monthly menu planners in an effort to capitalize on savings.  It is addictive.  The more you save the more you want to save. This new world is shocking to me because I was the one who would spend the same amount on a pair of shoes as I did on my rent.  Shocking I know.  But they were really nice shoes.

Do you have extreme couponing envy?  (Search deep me it's there.)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Food Frenzy

Lately I have been watching a lot of documentaries about food.  It has become a mini obsession really.  Because food is something so close to my heart I make it my business to find out everything I can about it.  I get excited when I discover that carrots come in psychedelic colours and patterns.  I also love how food connects us to complete strangers.  Just last week I spoke to a British grandma about roasting parsnips and cooking with beet root.  On the surface this woman and I seem to have nothing in common.  Yet in a supermarket we appeared like besties.  We parted with our traded secrets tucked neatly in our mental cooking folders.

This past year we ordered half a cow.  It was the most cost effective way to enjoy organic beef.  Every time I cooked some of this meat I feel proud that I took one small step to ensuring that some of our food is just food.  I am also angry that we have to pay so much for food the way it was meant to be consumed.  How is it cheaper to eat food that has been genetically altered or soaked with preservatives?

What are you in a food frenzy about?

Monday, September 26, 2011

I Write

I try to write.  The words come but the fear follows.  Worries about judgement settle near by.  And the words find their escape.  I am trying to be brave in this new world of mine.  I know it will be good - eventually.  But sometimes change can hurt.

There are moments when the bad is so bad I hurt all over.  Some days my beaten body carries me to my warm bed and I nestle beside my baby girl.  I look at her sweet lips pressed delicately together.  I watch her feather-like curls swirl this way and that around her round lovely face.  Kisses flow and our embrace tightens.  She is my Ella-Shilloh.

The past year and a half she has endured this treacherous life with me inside and out.  While I carried her my life endured pain that I never thought I could endure.  The horrid details are imprinted in a place I seldom visit anymore.  When she was born more pain followed and still kept following.  I tried to find peace in happiness.  Sometimes it was their waiting, other times they both escaped like runaway brides.

Lately I feel like my life is a race against time, money, and falling in over my head.  You get it. You've been there.  Maybe.  In the last three months I have gone through homelessness (for a short time), separation, and working outside of my home for the first time in a while.  My life became foreign to me.  My plans floated beside me out of the reach of my future.  The life of baking loaf after loaf of cinnamon bread, homeschooling, drop-ins, coffee breaks with the girls and diy-anything slipped by.

In three weeks I had changed my whole life and people couldn't recognize me anymore.  The honest truth is the hardest part about this brave new world of mine is not the separation, or the homelessness, or the work - it is the part where I have to find a new dream.

Here's the fear again.  Yet, I write.