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

Co-owner Jason Parzyk carries two growlers to fill as he serves up beer at Lake Stevens Brewing Co. The first brewery in the city is celebrating one-year anniversary this weekend. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Beer of the Week: Lake Stevens Brewing Co.’s Sour Imperial

The beer has a depth and a complex flavor profile that goes beyond just another barrel-aged stout.

Legendary bluesman Curtis Salgado to play Arlington show

The Northwest blues-soul-funk-R&B living legend performs with Ben Hunter and Joe Seamons Nov. 18.

This year’s Snohomish Blues Invasion has an all-star lineup

Proceeds send the CD Woodbury Trio and the Benton-Townsend Duo to the International Blues Challenge.

Schack holiday show features Northwest watercolor artists

The free exhibit also will have three-dimensional works, such as jewelry, glass, ceramic and wood.

‘Three Billboards’ rooted in Frances McDormand’s rigid role

The actress of “Fargo” fame gives an Oscar-worthy performance in this black comedy on human nature.

‘The Hate U Give’ shows the burden of being black in America

Angie Thomas’ story of a teen girl covers the challenging experience of African Americans.

A merry Christmas concert with Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith

The Christian music stars will perform at Xfinity Arena with Jordan Smith of “The Voice” on Nov. 18.

‘Veep’ production postponed during Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ treatment

The 56-year-old star has been documenting her breast cancer fight on social media.

The Rucker Hill house is featured in the Twin Peaks series in Everett. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Living happily ever after in the ‘Twin Peaks’ house

Everett homeowners snagged a role in the recent reboot of the 1990s cult classic show.

Most Read