To all of you who thought Carrie and I would wimp out on the No-Grocery Challenge by now: You are mistaken – sorely mistaken. I am happy to announce that we at The Newport House are still subsisting! After two days of scrounging, we’re still alive. Here’s what we have in our pantry: 1 can of vegetable soup, 5 packets of instant oatmeal, half a box of cereal, 7 eggs, 2 peppers, 3 onions, 6 potatoes, half a loaf of bread, half a box of noodles, a bag of ham beans, frozen puff pastry, varying amounts of frozen cauliflower, green beans, squash, and peas, and some cheese. Still think we can’t make it until Sunday? Think again, because I’m about to extend the No-Grocery Challenge.
That’s right. After tonight’s dinner (we are now down two packets of ramen noodles and half a bag of green beans), I decided that – what the heck – since we’re eating so well thus far, we may as well clean house and avoid the supermarket until our kitchen is absolutely bare, and I mean bare – down to the very last ham bean. Sound daunting? Hardly. Carrie and I have endured much worse in the name of frugality. Carrie slept in a sleeping bag in her bed last winter, because we keep the cottage so cold. We’ve had house guests nearly freeze to death overnight. In the summertime, we sit and sweat; luckily our pets all enjoy a subtropical climate. We use scarves as makeshift curtains, we sweep dust onto a paper plate, we get approximately two cable channels, we add water to our dish soap, and we swipe our napkins from Chipotle. For a few weeks, we experimented with water conservation by letting the yellow mellow, but then we remembered that we don’t pay for our own water, so who needs all that? We limit laundry to once a month, and we’ve stopped vacuuming altogether as a way to save energy (and avoid vacuuming). We even skipped our weekly Target run a few times! Trust me when I say that we are seasoned budgeters. I may not balance my checkbook, but I do know a thing or two about the challenge of saving money!
I’m confident, though, that this No-Grocery Challenge will be no challenge at all. The only unfortunate part is that most of the ingredients we have are somewhat at odds with each other. I’d hate to be home on a night when peppers and puff pastry are on the menu.