My dad and I decided to try the $1.50 a day food challenge. As the name implies, you only have $1.50 to spend, a day, on food for a week. Also known as the Live Below the Line challenge, people are doing this to bring awareness to poverty around the world and to see if you could survive below the line of poverty. Many celebrities, including Ben Affleck, Tom Hiddleston, and Sophia Bush, have participated in the challenge. It's too late now to donate to the official challenge, but you can still try it on your own just as a test for yourself. My dad and I decided we were going to combine our $1.50 a day for a week, so we had $21 to spend on food for the week. We also decided that water and spices we already had were going to be free, including minced garlic and powdered sauce packets, which was pushing it a bit. We spent our $21 dollars for the week on 7 cans of black beans, 2 cans of corn, a package of rice, 2 packets of pasta, a can of really cheap, watery tomato sauce, a box complete blueberry pancake mix (just add water), a bottle of syrup, coffee (a 'splurge' for my dad), and an extra large KitKat bar (my 'splurge', I calculated that I can have one piece after every lunch and dinner as a snack or dessert, the whole week). The weekend before (we started on Monday) we ate very heavily on meats, fresh produce, and all those indulgences we wouldn't have in the week to come. Sunday night I had pineapple, a s'more, popcorn, potato chips, and many glasses of milk to satisfy myself for a week.
|Cheap pasta with a pesto sauce packet made for a delicious, low-cost meal.|
Day 1Today I woke up late and skipped breakfast (sleep the hunger away!), which would have been plain oatmeal, anyway. My dad said that he had a full bowl, but his stomach was still growling only a while later. He also said that it was shockingly bland and flavorless, like eating cardboard. For lunch, we sautéed a full can of black beans with half a can of corn, used only a simple seasoning of salt and pepper, severed with rice and a glass of water. Same thing for dinner. It's not that we weren't full, we had plenty to eat, but the taste was so simple and plain! Minced garlic and spices were our saving graces. We couldn't do this challenge if I was in school or if my dad didn't work from home because you have to take the time to cook the meal ahead of time. I normally eat lunch at about noon, but after cooking, I end up eating at about 12:45 or even 1:00 and that wouldn't work on a tight schedule.
On Tuesday, I skipped breakfast again (I really did not want to eat that oatmeal!) and we made one, of our two bags of pasta, to eat with the same beans and corn from the day before. For dinner, we made one pesto flavored, powdered sauce packet, to add to the pasta and beans, and it actually added a lot of flavor. It was a tasty meal for the price. As a snack, of sorts, we made some of the blueberry pancakes from the box. We ate them with some syrup and it was... edible. Not too bad. Doing this really made me appreciate all the food that I take for granted, especially snacks. I am a big snacker, I live by the virtue, "Big snacks, little meals", so this was a very hard week for me. And my brother had no mercy. He had sandwiches, snacks, milk (what a luxury!), and everything else I couldn't have. It was going to be a long week.
Be sure to catch Days 3, 4, & 5 tomorrow!