building a strong – real family – on limited budget

There are, indeed, good reasons to believe we won’t go back to the old ways. But this new normal doesn’t have to be a time of chaos and decline. Instead, many Americans are building stronger families and communities, rejecting the waste and greed that made our economy implode, and turning instead to self-reliance and the sort of neighborliness that embraces diversities of all sorts. taken from Pioneers of the New Normal.

this is made of 16 old vintage scarves!  I would LOVE is sustainable...! click:)

Will YOU JOIN with our FAMILY in living 2011 with a new focus? ASKING yourselves why you are living the way you do.  In December I will have our answer for you.

I will be posting throughout each month on our progression in living with less.

As a commitment to weed out anything that takes from our family -  We have joined in the NO IMPACT experiment for the month of January.

It will not stop there for us. We are a real family...on a limited income...and what we share throughout this year will be very authentic.  We are searching.  This is our WAKE UP CALL.

Day 5 of 30...OVERVIEW of the LAST 5 days

We are not eating out for 30 days = me cooking...not only that - we are moving towards WHOLE foods and ones that are minimally processed.

Pictures of Grace's lunches for school { Monday was a holiday }


We chose 4 dinners from Cooking with my Kid { check this out..awesome photos..good instructions..worth your time }

broccoli & bowties { substituted rice pasta and used Costco's organic frozen spinach }

tacos con papas

cheater Italian wedding soup

pasta with turkey bacon and peas...{ I am putting the bacon on the side }

sprouted grain tortilla pizzas { I only had veggies and cheese no meat option } ( our recipe )

Here are a few pictures to prove to all that I DID COOK.  My husband and 16 year old son are having the most trouble with the changes.  We are only 5 days in.  I did get them some cardboard pizzas and shells and cheese...just in case:)

Jamie's 30-Minute Meals

I am borrowing this book from the library first. I LOVE Jamie Oliver and all the work he does to revolutionize our food industry. I want to LEARN to COOK..for real. Lots of us Americans are so used to opening boxes or eating out we have lost the Art & Love of cooking.  If I love the book I can buy a used copy through AMAZON.  Click here to buy now:)


We currently use our trash service offers a recycle program but it doesn't take that much and we are still filling up our big trash container.  Not good...need to change.  This weekend we are adding bins to recycle more things.

I have carried these in my car all year...I am committing to use them every time now.


We are not buying "new" things without checking all other options first.

I went into a thrift store today to look for a church outfit and came out with a bag of pj's for Grace!  I got 4 pj pants, pj set and a nightgown...all for 10.27!  No church outfit:(


I am beginning ... if I had a lots of extra cash/credit I could go buy out Target and put everything in cute labeled container.  I don't.  So I use what I have and will work toward getting containers etc. as we go:)

Here are some photos of my refrigerator.  I wiped down the shelves and reorganized.

I want to get a bunch of clear containers to organize snacks and fruits. Like this


I am spending this weekend going through the house purging. I am using the GIVE, SALE or THROW AWAY system.

We are testing the reality of really living with less.  STOP CONSUMING!!

I'm thinking that ANYTHING is worth

having more sanity

more time with my family

more time to find out what I/we ENJOY in life...


I called our cable company and as of JANUARY 26 we just have BASIC Cable....2-23 channels.  SAVINGS = 100.00 a month!!

what are some things you and your family are doing to live with less?  I'd love to hear it:)

What do you pack your kiddos lunches?



For Further Reading

** 10 Tips for Real Food Newbies...very helpful:)

**10 Natural Parenting Goals for 2011

**man builds a cobb house.....very interesting reading!  This guy lives in Missouri!  MY cool:)