Having a large number of children, I often get asked “How can you afford to feed all of your kids?” The answer is simple, I’m cheap. There, I said it. The only way to feed 7 growing children in this day and age is to be thrifty. I don’t buy crap. My kids eat good, healthy, wholesome foods. I’m not going to pay good money to make my kids obese. Secondly, I don’t buy what I can make (or put together easily) at home. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard my girlfriends talk about how much money they sink into their child’s lunch account at school only to find out their child has been buying chips, cookies and ice cream with their lunch money! No thank you. I pack my kid’s lunches every morning and while it takes me a good half hour to do so, I know what my kids are eating and where it came from. And I save a boat-load of cash in the process!
This part of my article is top secret. I have never divulged this information before, so after you read this my blog will self-destruct. No, seriously I’d love to share some of my money saving tips with you! At the top of this article you will notice a picture. Instead of spending at least $10-$15 a week on juice boxes alone, I bought these handy-dandy Rubbermaid reusable juice boxes. I fill them with juice or Kool-Aid or whatever comes in a huge economy size jug and the kids are set. The only problem I have found is if you’re not careful when doing dishes the straws like to get stuck in the garbage disposal and well…that never ends well. But never fear, I came up with a solution to that too! I bought a cheapo pack of bendy straws at the store and cut them to the same length as the straws that came with the boxes and PRESTO…you have a new straw. My kids like the “Mommy straws” better because they are all stripey and colored. Amazing what a few stripes on a straw will do!
Another thing I like to put in the kid’s lunches is some sort of fruit. Some days I’ll cut up apples or whatever but one day in the store I got this great idea to just buy those super-cool applesauce cups! They’re already filled and ready to go! How easy is that, right? First problem, they’re pricey. Maybe not when you’re only buying for one or two kids but when you’re buying for 7 and they only come in 6-packs (I hate that because I always have to buy 2 packs of everything just to end up with 5 leftover!) it starts to add up. That, added to the fact that the foil on those suckers is practically super glued on there so the kid ends up spilling half of it on him/herself just getting the thing opened…we need a solution. SIDENOTE: I watched the principle at our school spill part of an applesauce cup on himself helping a child open it so it’s not just the kids! My solution was to go out and spend roughly $2 on reusable Glad bowls. You get 6 bowls in a pack (so yes, I again had to buy 2 packs) so it’s a deal! Then we buy a big container of store brand applesauce, fill the containers and there you have it…portable applesauce for a fraction of the cost and your kid can actually eat it and not wear it! Sure again, it takes a bit of time but time is money and honey, we’re saving fools!
I hope you enjoyed this post. If you have any school lunch ideas that save you money feel free to post them in the comments section. I’m sure we’d all love to hear your ideas! Thanks for stopping by!