MyPlate on My Budget, nearing the finish line

Can I follow the USDA thrifty food plan and feed my family the Choose MyPlate advised daily nutrients? That’s the question I’m asking this March with MyPlate on My Budget.

It’s Week 4 now and I’m counting the days until this experiment is over. My fridge is empty, I’ve got a cold, and all of the chocolate is gone from the house.

Everyone is getting kind of cranky.

Normally, if one of my kids spills some milk or I accidentally burn some bagels I don’t freak out. If the coffee filter gets messed up and the coffee tastes like sludge, I don’t usually start ranting and raving like a total lunatic.

But what I’ve learned this past month is that when a family’s food budget is so tight that you are literally counting every quarter, then life’s little food accidents become bigger problems.

Burning toast might mean there’s nothing for lunch…Spilling the last bit of milk might mean that the kids eat bagels, but mom can’t eat her gluten-free cornflakes that she was really counting on…

Families with generous food budgets aren’t necessarily dealing with any of those stressors.

Then there’s the issue of my almost empty pantry. The only snack food left is popcorn and the last few apples that we are rationing.

So can I follow the USDA thrifty food plan? Yes. Is anyone in my family very happy about it? No.

I’ll be sharing some final thoughts about this experiment in my column on April 7th.

In the meantime, Rose McAvoy from Our Lady of Second Helpings and Light for Life is hosting a free breakfast for a month giveaway. Be sure to check it out!

More in Life

Secret garden: Privacy trees that won’t outgrow a small space

These plants offer some height to block out unwanted sights without taking over your yard.

‘Young Sheldon’ was born out of ‘The Big Bang Theory’

The hit TV show about Sheldon Cooper now has a spinoff series about him when he was a kid genius.

Reminder: Historic Everett’s self-guided home tour is today

The featured home depicted in the tour poster painting by Everett artist Elizabeth Person.

Home and Garden calendar for Snohomish County and beyond

Seattle Home Show 2: The fall version of the oldest and largest… Continue reading

Great Plant Pick: Panicum virgatum ‘Rotstrahlbusch’

This red-foliaged switch grass makes a good specimen but also creates a bold statement in a drift.

Plant these late bloomers to brighten up your shade garden

In this follow-up to a column on sunny borders, Steve Smith lists flowers to liven up a dark yard.

Do you know the joke about a set of special-order dishes?

Stop me if you’ve heard this one: A black-and-white design for colorful plates was sent to China…

Megyn Kelly hopes for a Trump-free zone with new daily show

She says her morning talk show, which debuts Monday on NBC, will not focus on politics.

Beer of the Week: 5 Rights Brewing’s Fresh hop imperial IPA

The Marysville brewery named its beer Wobbly the Laborer after the Industrial Workers of the World.

Most Read