Last week, I received word that my mother was seriously thinking about traveling to….GERMANY! I have never been out of the country and I still have family in Germany. I was so so excited. Basically, I would sell my soul for this trip with my family. My mother mentioned that I was more than welcome to come, the only catch was I basically have to pay for everything-everything including a 1,000 dollar plane ticket, a passport, money for random goodies, etc. So, I had a decision to make; should I spend almost all of my savings on a vacation less than 2 years away from student loan bills, OR should I grow up and start saving money?
I chose the latter, and in effort to do this I have decided that I would prepare most of my food at home. No more calls to
Jimmy Johns. I would spend $10 at the grocery for food that would last me a week rather than $10 on a sandwich that lasts me 15 minuets. After doing this for a few weeks I started to realize that the food that I created tasted even better than what I could of paid for for convince.
However, cooking at home more often came with some complications and questions. If I do not eat the food in time and have to throw it out am I really saving money? And how long do these things last without all the preservatives and additives? Do I have time for this?
Also, to be honest, I do not eat cheaply. I enjoy expensive Kashi bars and almond milk a little too much and everyone knows, being healthy isn’t cheap! But, this didn’t discourage me.
I would go to the grocery with a game plan and recipes in mind and what staples I was running out of. But, I also had some wiggle room left for meats that were on sale or fruits and vegetables that were in season. Grocery shopping was beginning to be my happy place. Brainstorming new and healthy ways to prepare the foods that were on sale was exciting.
After a few weeks of sticking to my plan I realized that I loved it. I started first with Granola. In the spirt of October, I found a recipe for pumpkin spiced granola from Skinnytaste.com and it was a success! I ate it all within a week! The second time I decided to switch up the recipe and it tasted even better than the pumpkin batch. I toasted some quinoa and oats and threw in whatever nuts, seeds, and dried fruits I had on hand. Then I tossed it all with a few tablespoons of a sugary base (a mixture of coconut oil, cinnamon, almond butter, honey, agave nectar, brown sugar, maple syrup, etc.) and threw it back in the oven. Making home-made granola was extremely easy and versatile. I don’t think I will ever buy it packaged again.
Sure preparing food at home is time consuming, but I enjoy being able to create food myself. I also feel better physically better after eating nutritious meals at home. I recommend everyone making this switch for themselves.
Please, join me on my journey to being more health conscious, creative, and money savvy. 🙂 Next, i’ll tell you about how coconut oil has changed my life.