Friday, April 16, 2010

Eating Natural

We haven't actively been trying to go natural, but it is working out that way.

A couple of years ago, DH went thru a layoff scare, Thankfully he didn't lose his job, but it got us thinking about grocery bills and the way we eat. I had started canning the year before and was looking forward to doing more. We stopped buying things like Hamburger Helper, Mac and Cheese, and all of the other processed foods because they were so expensive for very little nutrition. My mother gave me a Make A Mix Cookery cookbook and her copy of The Old Virginia Cookbook. We started buying foods in bulk and on sale and vacuum sealing it into portion sizes. I got a dehydrator and started using it regularly.

We have essentially stopped buying anything packaged, except for my son's lunch box stuff. We also look for origin labels on ANYTHING consumable. If it isn't made or grown in the US or Canada, we just won't buy it. It has made us really crave fresh veggies over the winter, since so much is grown out of the country and shipped in, but since the garden is up now, we know it won't be long before I am shelling peas and snapping beans.

And fortunately, we had a lot of last years harvest canned or dried to use over the winter. With the exception of dairy and eggs, we still have at least a month of food put back, including meats and fruits, so we would not have to buy groceries if he loses his job. And this way, I know exactly what is in it. No preservatives, not too much sodium, no MSG, no high fructose corn syrup, and nothing that I can't pronounce.

My goal is to eventually get to the point where I only have to go to the store, maybe, once a month. But that is still a couple of years off. Until then, we are doing what we can to protect our health, and our expenses, by eating closer to the land.

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