Change of Direction

After my Whole30 and Paleo diet fail, I felt pretty discouraged and felt like I’d failed. It’s taken me this long to realize that *I* hadn’t failed–I just needed to face the fact that it was impossible to implement a Whole30 and/or Paleo diet for a family of 7 adults (technically, the girls are teens…but still. It takes a boatload of food to feed us) on a disability budget. Do I think that Paleo is still probably the healthiest diet for us? Yes. But I can’t stress over the fact that I can’t do Paleo. I have enough on my plate to stress over. 😉

So. What is my change of direction? Feed us the healthiest food I can on the budget I have. It’s going to mean flour, sugar, potatoes and rice are a part of my diet and that’s okay. I need to fill us up and not worry so much about being a failure because I served white rice or potatoes as a filler.

Part of my plan to feed us healthy is committing to ordering at least 2 baskets each week from Bountiful Baskets. Ordering these baskets is an excellent way to ensure my family gets enough fruit and vegetables in their diet each week. And the $31.50 each week for the two baskets is such a good deal. The baskets vary each week but that’s part of the fun. This week between the two baskets, I came home with:

* 6 lbs bananas

*2 packages celery

* 4 english cucumbers

* 2 honeydew melon

* 4 lbs peaches

* 4.75 lbs apples

* 2.75 lbs tomatoes

* 2 lb carrots

* 4.75 lbs sweet potatoes

* 1.5 lbs sweet pepper (that 1.5 lbs was only TWO huge peppers!)

* 3.75 lbs avocado (again…HUGE…4 avocados)

* 3 lbs limes

The fun is coming up with menus that incorporate all of the produce. I still have sweet potatoes left from last week (my microwave bit the dust so I haven’t planned far enough ahead to make them in the oven) that I need to use up so they are on the menu for tomorrow. The weather is finally cooling down enough that I can add soups and stews back into the menu plan rotation. Tomorrow, I plan to make African Sweet Potato Stew. It’s one of my favorite soups. We won’t tell the kids it’s vegetarian. 🙂

Later in the week, I will make another sweet potato soup. Vegetarian Chili will most likely become a lunch when we’ve used up all of the lunchmeat. Those two soups will use up the sweet potatoes (at least some of them), sweet peppers, tomatoes, some of the limes, and some of the radishes from last week’s basket. The cucumbers will be sliced and placed into containers for snacking or for serving with lunches/dinners. The fruit never lasts long. I either tell the kids to have fruit for snacks after school or I will make a fruit salad to serve with dinners. The avocados and limes will become guacamole as soon as the avocados are ripe. I’ll plan to make the vegetarian chili the same day I make guacamole and serve guac instead of sour cream.

Some of the kids don’t like bananas so it’s possible that we’ll have too many to eat before they go bad. What I like to do is to freeze ripe banana chunks to use in smoothies. I peel the bananas and slice them into fairly large chunks. I place the banana slices on a waxed paper lined baking sheet and pop them into the freezer. The waxed paper is necessary in order  to keep from chiseling your bananas off the baking sheet. As soon as the bananas are frozen (or whenever I remember them), I place them into baggies.

If I have any sweet potatoes left, I am going to make these. I have all of the ingredients and they are healthy. 🙂 And chocolate.

 

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