It is now Day 84 of my blog project. I started this task on May4th, so today would be day 84. Why is this significant?
I have been wanting to do a recap post, but 30 days whizzed by and not much had really happened. 60 days seemed kind of arbitrary and unimportant. And 90 days is smack dab in the middle of next week, I couldn't wait any longer. Also Day 84 is the last day of the first 12 weeks. I think this is fitting since my desire to clean up my food act started with being pregnant and giving birth to my children. 12 weeks is most universally considered to be one trimester of pregnancy, and as many know, 12 weeks is what you most often get from your employer in the form of maternity leave. It is actually the maximum that you can take under the Family Medical Leave Act before your employer doesn't have to give you the exact same job back (It might be 3 months for that...but two weeks more or not, it is a pretty short time).
So now that it is the ending of my first trimester here at The Table of Promise, let me look back at some of the things I have accomplished in my time.
* I am still buying lots of local and/ or organic produce in addition to being in my CSA, no extra points there, but it is the cornerstone of my commitment to fresh whole foods.
*Instead of buying premade pasta sauces, I started making big batches of sauce from scratch and freezing it. The cost is about the same for conventional store brand sauce and my homemade variety from organic tomatoes. My family is pretty psyched too.
* I switched to organic pasta. The boxes are only 12 oz instead of 16 oz and do you know what, we are not going hungry. We probably didn't need the bigger box to begin with. There is a lovely place at my farmer's market that makes uncertified but still organic fresh pastas. I have been recently buying most of our pastas from them. And they have a very good whole wheat variety as well.
* I stopped buying juice for my kids. The truth--they just don't need it. Thing 1 would stay jacked up on sugar all day if he could and Thing 2 has a preference for sweets, so I do not want to go down the same road with him. That is not to say that they will never have juice again. At a restaurant or a birthday party, we will drink juice. But I feel that much more confident about it, because I know it is no longer a daily battle I have to fight. And for anyone who perhaps thought I was buying "juice drinks', nope, I equally dislike 100% whole juice. I would much rather the kids eat real fruit. Which they do by the bucketful. No juice needed.
* I have switched to whole wheat everything. Not only am I making many of our baked goods and eating less flour based foods in general, I am in the habit now of looking for the label 100% whole wheat on everything. I know that anything labeled "whole wheat bread" could be as little as 25-40% whole wheat flour and the rest white flour. I am on a crusade to eliminate as much white flour as I can from our family kitchen. We will encounter it outside the walls of our home, but as a treat I am not as worried about it.
* I am trying not to buy plastic tupperware any more. So far I am doing really well with this. But it takes a very wealthy person to read an article on plastic residue in our food and then the next day throw out everything in their kitchen and replace it with glass. I am throwing old plastic containers away as they wear out and I am replacing them with glass. So Far it is going well. They are alot easier to clean. Who knew?
* I have stopped buying crackers. They are still getting into the house through some well intentioned child caregivers. But most of the overdose is gone.
* The Yellow Box Oat Circles have been replaced with a lower sugar organic version.
* No more Cliff Bars--I am all about Larabars now and I prefer nuts and dried fruit to those.
* I have made a bigger commitment to brown rice. We still keep white rice in the house, but I am really working on it.
* I have started using most dried beans. At our Farmer's Market the folks who sell my organic flours also grow beans. The summer was so wet last year that they have a limited selection this year. But they said everything is amazing this year. So next year? 14 different varieties of beans! Woohoo!
* I have bought Ice Cream only a couple of times since the project began. I keep meaning to make ice cream more often, but it is a hassle. I like the idea of eating it less as a trade off. At least it is still Breyer's, real ingredients.
* I continue to make homemade yogurt most weeks. And I am REALLY REALLY PROUD to say the my kids have had nothing but plain yogurt for months. I have bought plain yogurt a couple times when I ran out of time to make it. But even our baby sitter is giving them bowls of plain yogurt now and we have left the other crappy sugary stuff behind. This is maybe my favorite.
I am sure there are other things. But I can't think of them now. Suffice it to say, I am committed to change and I still have many other things to change. There are so many other things that I haven't been able to research yet. I feel better, I am happier about our food. But most of all we are finding a balance in this, I am not losing my life in this project. However, now that we have settled into a routine, I want to work harder about closing some of the loopholes we have allowed in this. I really want to push myself to see how far we can go to be 100% homemade. I would like to find my breaking point.