I decided maybe I should try to work up a menu for a month. I thought maybe that would help with my financial struggle. I looked through some of my cookbooks, got bored and Googled ”menu for 1 person per month”. The first thing I read was this. It only made me more depressed.  

It says the US average food budget for 1 person per month is about $302.00. I have $101.00 to spend. No wonder it’s not easy. Heck, I don’t even know what year that’s written. Every time I go to the grocery store, prices have gone UP! I write down all my food purchases in a notebook. Since the first of the year, jumbo eggs went from $2.19 to $2.49 and a bag of 4 avocados went from $2.99 to $3.29. Those are 2 of my staples.

I have been too weak and sick to shop at my favorite Mexican grocery. The easiest places to get to from here are Trader Joe’s, Smith’s grocery and the Asian market. My food month is from the 15th to the 15th. This last month I spent $119.60 on food. I usually don’t spend much real money over my $101 food stamps, but this month I made the unusual trip to the NPS store, and used cash.

Oceancity Seafood (Chinese)  $35.68   9 items   gyoza, steamed buns, pakora, siopao, ground pork, cilantro, onions, shallots

Smith’s  $11.29   11 items   10 cans evaporated milk, mushrooms

NPS Store  $15.90   18 items   milk, coconut water, chicken, cheeses, onions, fish sauce, crackers, cookies, chocolate spread, candy

Trader Joe’s   $56.73   17 items   eggs, bacon, coconut oil, cheeses, avocados, Sriracha bbq sauce, ham, mushrooms, chicken, onion, tomato, Romaine, gyoza sauce

It looks skimpy when written out. That food was for 29 days or 87 meals. Good thing I spent 5 of those days in the hospital. That helped stretch the food I got. Then there was the coupon for a free lunch 🙂

This financial month will be 31 days or 93 meals at $1.08 per meal. I want to have a better plan for making it through the month.

I decided there was no way in heck I could miss Food Not Bombs Saturday. I hope it was worth it. The trip there and back made me real sick. Sunlight makes me want to barf, gives me a horrendous headache and causes me to run for the bathroom. Of course my voice was not working right and my eyelids drooped down. Most of the food is partially rotten, but I am very, very glad to have it.

I spent quite awhile Googling to try to figure out how to live on $100/month for food. Most posts about people on SNAP are very condescending. They also assume a lot more money to spend. With my body giving out again and my lack of funds, I am very much going through the ANGER phase of grief. I am having a day of overwhelming anger and grief. Hopefully I can shed some tears, have a pity party and be done with it soon. I should be looking at the pic of FNB food and feel blessed.

I asked some foodies to help me figure out a menu for a month, that would cost about $100. Some guy started calling me a troll right off the bat. He didn’t think anyone lived on such small amounts of money. I wasn’t expecting that! I just wanted ideas. I didn’t want my whole life examined for flaws. One woman told me I was wasting money to spend $2.99 per quart to buy kefir. I should be making it! Another insisted I have to eat chicken liver or other livers. I said I couldn’t because they are high in purines that cause gout. One person said I should be saving the fat from all the meat I cook and that coconut oil is just a fad. No matter what the subject, there was someone insisting everything about me was just plain wrong. Gee, somehow I bumbled and stumbled my way to 59. The whole thing reminds me yet again why I rarely ask for any kind of help. Few people want to offer the kind of help you ask for. Most want to teach some sort of lesson because I am obviously so stoooooopid!

I wish I had the energy to shop a dozen stores for the best bargains and then to slice and dice and knead and wash and can and bake and ferment. Sometimes I just want a darn bottle of kefir! I am old and tired beyond my years. I don’t even have enough strength and energy to mop the floors or take out the garbage! I dipped candles and ground my own home-grown corn into meal a long time ago. Now I just want to take a nap!

I spent Saturday in a weird trance. I didn’t turn on the TV or listen to music because sounds hurt my head too much. And forget all the flickering light on TV!

Sunday was pretty much a carbon copy of Saturday, but I did turn on the TV for a few minutes. Then I remembered why I didn’t have it on yesterday.

My friend Gordon came to check on me after church. My voice is soooooo broken! My eye closed just from the effort to talk. Olive went nuts to see him. I think this is the first time he ever came in and sat down. Olive decided that meant he was here to pet her. She was hilarious. After he left, she went in the bedroom and got high on catnip. She suddenly decided all her toys were fun! She even dug out things way under cabinets.

I amused myself by answering questions and making comments on the food list. A few people actually had good ideas for yummy cheap food to make. Most were more interested in being social workers. Sigh…. Maybe if I join a site for social workers, they will give me some good food tips? :-p Until I started answering random questions, I totally forgot about that cookbook I wrote for Vermont Head Start. I wish I had a copy. I should follow my own advice for food prep.

I don’t feel well. It’s scary to revert back so fast to the wimpy Wendy. I had hoped the IVIgs would last longer. But….it has been 3 weeks since the first one. That’s about how long they last. There are some people on my MG support groups who get 2 days of IVIgs every 2 weeks. That would be nice! I could be superwoman 🙂

Three weeks ago I could walk or waltz around. Now if I go from my comfy chair to the bathroom or bedroom, I need the walker. My heart seems to beat a zillion times a minute and I cannot catch my breath. The room will NOT stop spinning and the wrrrrrrrooooooo…..wrrrroooooooo…..wwwrrrrrrrroooooo noises in my head won’t be quiet. I was standing at the counter when my left leg suddenly gave out underneath me. Thank goodness for the counter! I was able to catch myself. Unfortunately my knee made lots of crunching noises and the whole leg is swollen up.

I am like Icarus. I thought I could soar. It was too much fun. Soon my wings melted and kersplat! Well….it was wonderful while it lasted. Now back to that other reality.

I learned a new tidbit today. Doctors at the Mayo Clinic have acknowledged that we have West Nile Virus flares for years afterwards. I am living that one!

The official Wunderground local high for Sunday was 74.8. That’s 20 degrees above average! From my chair, I can see the flowering crabapple trees opening their buds.