Saturday, February 9, 2008

Trim the Fat challenge

Chile is hosting a challenge called Trim the Fat. I decided to participate, basically you decide on things you want to cut back on for the month of February and blog about them. So here are my goals as well as an update on how I did this first week of the challenge.

I decided to cut back in 3 areas:

1. Buy nothing but food and gas for the month of February - I did pretty good on this one this week. I only bought 1 thing that wasn't a necessity and that was peanut butter hearts for Mark. He loves these and I get them for him every year when they are on sale, which is usually after Valentine's Day but this year I found them on sale a few days ago and got some for him for Valentine's Day. I have them hidden away until it is time.

2. Cut back on the amount of food purchased - I tend to be really bad about running to the grocery store for that 1 ingrediant I need for a dish. We end up going to the store 3 times a week on average. And that always involves impulse buys. I'm not very good at making due and substituting in recipes. Part of that is because of Mark, he likes a dish made a certain way and if you change it, it isn't right anymore and he doesn't like it. So, my goal is to only go to the store once a week, to go with a list and to stick to the list. This will also involve making weekly menus so I know what to get.

This week I did good here. I made a list and went to the grocery store once. And I stuck to the list. This is really going to be a challenge for me, but will be really good to start doing.

3. Cut back on the amount of time spent on-line - Since I'm also participating in The Freeze Your Buns challenge, it is cold in my house this winter. I HATE the cold so I find myself spending most of my time on the couch, under my blanket, with my laptop on my lap. This keeps me warm. However, things aren't getting done! I have a long list of things to do and I'm not making progress on any of them. I need to get off the couch and just suck it up! I do find if I stay busy I'm usually not as cold.

I've done a bit better at this one this week. This is my first time on the computer today and I haven't been on the couch once. I've gotten things accomplished. This will also be a struggle for me but I have things I want to get done and they aren't going to get done if I'm hiding under my blanket!


Chile said...

You did far better than I at keeping your shopping to a minimum. Can you talk to Mark about being more flexible with dishes and recipes? Luckily, my sweetie will eat almost anything I feed him.

hillbilly2be said...

I sure am impressed with how you put ideas into action. I like your choices of things to cut back on too.

I would not do well with a cold house though... my brain turns to jello below 68 degrees. Fortunately, winter here is mild and the passive solar / wood stove heats our little house with ease.


Danielle said...

We've been keeping our place at 58°. The ups and downs aren't supposed to be good with the heat pump, so I just keep it there. We use the wood stove for space heating down in the basement family room where the earth and cinderblock have good insulating properties and thermal mass.

One of the best ways to make it feel warm inside is to go work outside for a bit. It always feels toasty when I come back in. It's the sitting that lets the cold settle into your bones.

Of course, I wear a hat and scarf inside pretty regularly, too. *g*

Christy said...

Chile - I'll try talking to him but since he doesn't buy into most of what I'm doing he'll go along as long as it doesn't inconvenience him too much. Changing all his dishes around probably won't go over well. He is the type that will only eat 1 brand of PB or use 1 brand of ketchup because none of the others taste right. He won't even try my homemade jam that Logan and I have been eating since July becaue it won't be the same as the store bought. Sigh.

Ron - Thanks! I don't do well with a cold house either.

Danielle - Wow, you are way tougher than me! I simply wouldn't be able to function with the house that cold. And Mark would draw the line at wearing a hat in the house! But you are right the sitting just let the cold sink in. I've been busy cleaning and baking all day today and haven't been cold at all.

Chile said...

Ah, I see. Well, ya gotta pick the battles worth fighting. Sounds like you and Logan get to eat the better stuff. :)

There's always the surreptitious route, too. Instead of completely changing his dishes, make slight substitutions. If he doesn't notice, keep gradually increasing them. I did that with mine. When we married, he hated nutritional yeast. Now he loves it. Unfortunately, that hasn't worked with vinegar though. hehe

Christy said...

Chile - I was able to switch him over to whole wheat pasta and I've been able to sneak flax into a bunch of things so with time I can probably make some transitions. But yes, generally Logan and I eat all the good homemade stuff and Mark eats all the crappy store stuff. Aren't kids supposed to be the picky ones? Logan will eat almost anything I make.

P said...

This challenge is a great idea! I love the things you've chosen to focus on. They are just about exactly what I need to do as well. Living "out" in the country, I find I "drop by the store" almost every time I go past it and come back with all sorts of unnecessary "sale" stuff. I'm going to give this challenge a try.

As for the thermostat-- we have a woodstove for heat and so the temps vary greatly in our house-- freezing in the AM and just fine once I get out there and stoke up the fire. Keeps you moving anyway.


Chile said...

Perri, follow the link in the Trim the Fat banner to my blog and leave me a comment if you want to sign up officially. Let me know which blog to list you under (since I see you have several). :)