Sunday, October 25, 2009

What's For Dinner?

This is a question that has morphed into something else around here lately. Now, it's something like this: "What do you think we can make out of the produce they had at the store this week?" I will definitely post pics of our store when I get my real camera, but the one I'm carrying now doesn't do indoors very well. I need to do it justice.

Imagine a decent sized gas station store. Throw in a three foot section of shelving and cold space (that's the produce section). Add another wall of random household stuff, like a vacuum (yes, I meant to say only one), a toaster, and other such necessities of life. Add in a shelving unit for all cleaners, toiletries, and paper goods, including diapers. Then add a collection of random things such as a couple bikes, boat gear, AUTEC branded stuff, and various playthings aimed at the children. Got all that? Then you have a decent picture in your head of what our store looks like.

Basically, meat comes in about every two weeks. However, it's so expensive you are better off flying to Florida to get it. Oliver had to go there last week to take care of our car (yes, that story is still coming), so I asked him to get whatever meat he could to fill out his weight allowance. I'm now making it stretch as much as I can as I have no idea when we will get another chance to buy more. So tonight, we had chili with about 2/3rds of a pound of meat and some tofu mixed in (because we can get weird stuff like tofu; good thing my kids love it). Not too bad, actually, and definitely healthier.

We can usually get eggs, although sometimes they don't handle the trip very well. I was lucky last time I was in there. Most of them were broken, but I was able to patch together a good dozen. We are out, so I'm not sure if we'll be eating eggs this week or not. The barge comes in on Thursdays, so if they are all gone I'll have to wait until Friday after they restock. I shipped some powdered eggs for cooking just in case that sort of thing happened, but, yeah, no eggs for breakfast.

Really, though, I'm not complaining. Just trying to paint an accurate picture of what life is like here. I know this probably sounds terrible to many of you, but it's kind of more like an interesting scavenger hunt to me. I like a challenge, and cooking has always been a bit of an adventure to me. When I lived in the States, it was all about eating as healthy as I could manage, with organics and local produce. Now, it's more like trying to figure out what to make out of a head of cauliflower, a handful of potatoes, and an onion, as that was what looked good enough to eat this week.

I'm really grateful I decided to learn to bake bread last year. Bread is flown in three times a week, but they still run out now and again; plus, it isn't typically the type I would normally buy. I now own a grain mill, and shipped enough wheat, oat groats, and other grains to last us at least a year. So, we aren't starving. We just don't eat as much meat, which is fine with me. I was actually eating almost no meat when I met Oliver, and kind of met him in the middle when it came to cooking after that. He's ok with being a little more adventurous because he doesn't want to pay twenty bucks for a small pack of ribs.

I'm also glad I cloth diaper. Diapers here run about $13 for the smallest size pack you can buy. They don't even carry the jumbos, which I remember paying $11 for in the commissary right before we moved. There are never sales on non-perishable stuff unless it's damaged. Yeah, diapering Oscar would have left us broke. Since our utilities are included, we are saving about $100 a month on diapers right now.

It's an adventure around here, that's for sure! When my mother-in-law called to tell me whose family we had this Christmas and ask what might be good presents for us this year, I told her to just send us some food. Especially some good dark chocolate.

6 sonar pings:

Mrs. Staff Sergeant: said...

Wow, that sounds like quite an adventure! I can't imagine. Must be a huge adjustment, but I get you about it being sort of like a challenge. That's a great attitude to have :)

Peggy said...

And yet another example of what I've said before. You are perfect for military life! I'm so glad you are happy.

DerrK said...

Wow.

Sues2u2 said...

I was nodding my head @ the first part of your description of your commissary. That was (the first part) what "our" first commissary was like in England. Except for all of the other things. Oh & the fact that I could go downtown. The funny thing though is that I can picture what you've got & man, have you given me the best laugh today! (in a good way, believe me)

All I can say is what an adventure. As I was reading I kept thinking it's a good thing they cloth diaper. What a blessing in disguise, eh? And, it still sounds like fun.

MOMSWEB said...

Gasp! Oh my goodness. I think you painted the picture very well, but I still would like to see some. May I say it? Okay, I just have to say it...I'm so thankful for where I'm living. I will NOT complain.

Sgt and Mrs Hub said...

Wowza!! Sounds like the food thing is really going to keep you on your toes! I'm not sure I would be having the same great attitude you are :)

Way to roll with the punches!

-Andrea