Friday, December 30, 2011

Eating Healthy on a Budget: Part 4

I can't believe that 2011 is almost over. This will be my last post for the year! I have blogged way more this year than ever before. I've enjoyed sharing my weight loss and healthy living journey with you along with tidbits from my life and my opinion on things. My hope is that you've gotten as much out of reading my blog as I have out of writing it. Blogging has been a great accountability on this journey. I look forward to what 2012 will bring, meeting new goals, and learning new things. I hope that you'll continue to join me through it all. Always feel free to share my blog with others, especially those you know who are facing the same battles I am. Comments, encouragement, tips, etc are welcome too!

I had hoped to have another guest post for the final entry in the Eating Healthy on a Budget series. Alas, I had no takers. I hope you enjoyed the posts from Misti and Amy though. I'm looking forward to more series and guest postings next year!

I've wondered what other tips I could offer to you that hasn't already been said. I've gone back and re-read the past three posts and the tips given there. I hoped that by doing that I would recall some tip that hadn't been mentioned...and I did! Lucky for you! :)

Below you'll find some information on organizations that are there to help you when times are tough. There is no reason to be ashamed if you need a little extra help. We do. We are a family of three that lives on one income. God has always seen us through and we haven't gone hungry yet. We have used some of the organizations listed below and we are currently using number one. 

Organizations that can help you Eat Healthy on a Budget:

1. WIC - stands for Women, Infants, and Children. WIC is administered in each state by the local State Health Departments. Eligibility is determined by household size, income, nutrition risk, etc. I love this program because they aren't just providing you with free food, it's good, healthy food for you and your family. Of course you must be pregnant or have a child of eligibility age. We used WIC after Abigail was born. I still don't know how we would have survived if we'd had to pay for all those cans of formula a month. And before you go saying, breastfeeding is cheaper, I tried. My body barely produced any milk. We found ourselves earlier this year, once again, in need of WIC's services. They provide the basics...milk, eggs, bread, cheese, juice, cereal, and even fresh fruits and vegetables. Which in turn makes it easier for us to provide the other necessities and still get healthy, cost efficient meals on the table. You can find the WIC basics here

2. Angel Food Ministries - I Googled for a while this afternoon searching for a website for this organization. A friend of mine recently purchased from them a month or so ago, so I know they are still around. If any of you have any information on a website or how to get in touch with them please let me know. We've used Angel Food Ministries before. This organization sales you a bulk of groceries for a small price, usually around $25-$40 depending on what size box you order. The boxes come filled with meats, vegetables, and often desserts (I think. It's been a while since we've purchased a box. Feel free to leave a comment if your information is better than mine!) I believe that you have a choice in the types of meat that you want. For the most part, the items contained in the boxes are healthy and nutritious. The pick up place for these boxes is usually a local church.

3. Your local food bank. Most cities have some sort of food bank where you can go and get assistance if you need it. The church we attend is a distribution center for Second Harvest Food Bank of Greater New Orleans and Acadiana

I'm sure there are other great organizations out there that can help you in a time of need. Budgeting your money is a helpful thing to do whether you need extra assistance or not. If you don't need to employ any of the above services, consider giving to your local food bank. Your surplus will help someone in need. Someone out there can enjoy a healthy meal because of your willingness to give.

Jessica's Spaghetti Sauce

1 1/2 lbs lean ground beef or turkey
1 bag of frozen seasoning blend (frozen onion, bell peppers, and celery)
2 cans of petite diced tomatoes
8 oz tomato sauce
6 oz tomato paste
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper (this makes it pretty spicy so adjust according to your taste)
1 tbs garlic powder
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tbs chili powder

Brown meat. About halfway through add in frozen seasoning blend. Once meat is cooked thoroughly, drain. Return meat to a stockpot and combine all remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for at least 1 hour. Serve over whole wheat pasta.

Peace, Love, and Healthy Living,



  1. Jessica, you wrote 1 tablespoon of garlic powder. Did you mean 1 teaspoon? I must not be using enough - lol!

  2. Nope...1 tbs is correct! I like my garlic! :)

  3. I like the idea of adding the frozen seasoning blend. I've never done that. Otherwise our homemade sauces are very similar! I do add a touch of maple syrup to cut the acidity of the tomatoes. Hey, I have a good recipe for homemade taco seasoning mix if you want me to send it to you. Hugs girl!

  4. I LOVE the frozen seasoning blend because it's cheap and it's always on hand if you need to throw a quick meal together! I would totally love the taco seasoning recipe!