Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A foodie has hijacked this personal finance blog

Nothing major to report, at least not financially speaking. For us, February is a month of working, budgeting, planning, and finding ways to snag a little treat every now and then! I have some big news to share, news that affects our finances, but I need to wait a few more weeks before I spill the beans.

No, I'm not pregnant!

I'm still trying to figure out how to get good food for less money. Last week, we spent ~$125 on groceries; this week we tried shopping at Trader Joe's instead of Whole Foods and spent roughly the same (although I think we ended up with more food, since TJs sells pre-packaged fruits and veggies - so instead of getting to select how much produce you want, you end up with a pack of two peppers, or a pack of three bok choy, or a pack of three zucchini, and so on and so forth). TJs seems to offer fewer gluten free/soy free/corn free options than WF, but it does sell a good selection of organic ingredients. The meat and cheese prices were definitely lower at TJs than at WF.

I don't think I should stress out too much about the total, though, especially because we've been really good about cooking at home and not going out to eat. We used to go out several times a week, and now it's more like two or three times a month at most. So that's money saved.

Trent and I have planned a date for Valentine's Day. We haven't decided on a specific place yet, mainly because it's tough to find an affordable restaurant that's transparent about its ingredients. We might go to the sushi place down the street or perhaps try Bonefish Grill, which apparently has a gluten free menu.

Meanwhile, Trent took me to a local sweet shop to pick out some Valentine's Day goodies, and here is what I ended up with:

(I had way more lollipops than this, but a certain young individual thought it was appropriate to "borrow" them. That's right - I'm in a lollipop tug-of-war with a preschooler.)

The lollipops are made by Yummy Earth, which specializes in organic, all-natural, gluten-free and corn-free sweets. These lollipops are the best I've ever tasted.

And since we're on the subject of food, what the heck - here's tonight's dinner: white bean chicken chili a la The Pioneer Woman:

What I love about this chili is that it's spicy, but not overwhelmingly so. It's just enough to clear the sinuses!

Looking for Freedom isn't meant to be a food blog, but it's starting to reflect the fact that our frugal(ish) living means we spend an awful lot of time in the kitchen. :-) My life right now is all about working, playing, cooking, and looking forward to some exciting future opportunities.

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