Realizations

A few random thoughts that aren't worth putting in their own post:

I think hummus and pita is the new chips and salsa. We had a ward "international dinner" the other night and there were several kinds of hummus and pita and absolutely no chips and salsa. Asian and Mediterranean foods are the cool ones now and I guess Mexican is not so exciting anymore. It's interesting to see where food trends go. I wonder what will be cool next?

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I've been trying to figure out my classes for the Fall and feel a little lost because I don't know what I'm supposed to register for or when to do it. I'd also like to learn Portuguese but they don't seem to have any classes available. I should have done that while I was at BYU. Maybe I'll start looking into grants for a trip to either Brazil or Portugal next summer. The idea of living abroad is kind of overwhelming, but I think it could be a lot of fun for us.

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I hadn't really thought that grocery prices were rising until this last week or two. Suddenly I do feel like stuff is more expensive, even though I still mostly shop the sales. I am pretty surprised by all the articles I keep reading about families trying to cut down from spending 600 or 700 dollars a month on groceries for a family of 4. Prices do vary around the country, but we're usually under 300 a month here. I also laugh at all the doom and gloom about how stuff like eating out and getting pedicures are "becoming a luxury". Haven't those things always been luxuries?

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This week has been designated "TV turn-off week", and even though I should be on the bandwagon for that, I'm not this year. It's still too cold to play outside and I'm afraid we'd go a little crazy without a wee bit of TV time. A few weeks ago we set a limit for S-Boogie of four shows every day (a total of 2 hours) and she's been really good at sticking to it. I honestly don't feel like that's too much and we're good at limiting the TV to only those times. I watch a few hours a week as well as Jeopardy (which I tape and watch later at night) so I honestly don't feel like TV is too out of control in our house. I see the problems with excess TV and totally understand them so maybe some time later in the year we'll do a "TV free week". Right now I think we're doing OK with our two hours or less of PBS a day.

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Like I mentioned, it's still freezing cold here. I think this has been the longest winter of my life. We love Seattle and think it's gorgeous, plus we'll miss all our good friends here. But neither of us is going to miss the winters. The forecast has been "mid-40s and rainy" since last October and I'm starting to go a little nuts. The winters may be mild (compared to Alaska), but it's a bit too much for this California girl and her Hawaiian husband.

Comments

Emma said…
Lots of great thoughts! I too saw that article today and wondered how a family of 4 spends $700 a month on groceries! And eating out and pedicures have always been a luxury. Truth be told I have had one pedicure in my life. Last year for my birthday I used a gift certificate from a friend. I just had to pay for the tip.
Silly Marie said…
The hummus and pita craze has yet to catch on here in TX. I tried bringing it (homemade and delicious!) to a relief society dinner once and I think I had only two or three people even TRY it!! When I was helping someone come up with food ideas for a reception, I suggested it and another lady said, "I wouldn't serve it unless you didn't want people to eat!" WHATEVER! Close minded...grumble, grumble, grumble.
brinestone said…
Wow, you must really be clipping coupons (or else food is cheaper where you are) to keep your grocery bill under $300 per month. I think ours is averaging about $350 or so lately, and I feel like there's nowhere left to cut. Well, I guess we could just stop buying ice cream and start eating sandwiches every day for lunch, but those are two sacrifices I'm not willing to make.
Kristeee said…
Man, if I tried to turn off the TV for a week right now I think I'd lose my mind. It takes my baby 45-60 minutes to eat, and she does it several times a day. "Charmed" is singlehandedly preserving my mental health.

And as far as I'm concerned, chips and salsa should never go out of style.

I think living abroad would be awesome. Kids pick up languages so fast, too, and every family needs a second language to speak in around strangers. (It's sad that my hubby and I speak different languages.)
And the TV problem is not just a quantity, but also a quality problem. It isn't enough to limit hours if your four year old spends all afternoon watching Hannah Montana on the Disney Channel. I don't know anyone like that. ;)

Our groceries are around $400, but I pretty much buy all my toiletries, etc. at the grocery store too, so it is hard to say what is just grocery. I've also been trying to stock up food storagey type items too. (Not just a can of beans, but a case, etc.)
Terina said…
i shop at our commissary and when i've shopped at regular grocery stores, i have been SHOCKED at their prices. we spend more than that a month, but i've been trying to switch to more organice i know what the ingredients are things. and i'm not buying diapers and wipes anymore so thats better.

i feel your pain. after spending a total of four years in france and germany, the winters about killed me. texas was great for sun, and now that we're in NC, it isn't bad. more rain than i expected but still (weather wise) better than germany. i would put up with living in germany for many reasons. never tried hummus. i think the name of is just sounds a little odd to me. i'm sure i'll try it soon.
Lindsay said…
Yeah, I'm getting tired of this rising grocery price trend. And of all the things to get more expensive, it's the basic, one-ingredient staples. That's just not right.

And you remind me....I've been wanting to stop in at this Mediterranean grocery store down the block from our apartment and pick up some of their apparently to-die-for pita bread and hummus. Yum.
JB said…
That's funny, we almost never watch TV, but we are on the internet at least as much as a lot of people watch TV. It's hard to find a good way to cut back on the internet though. What are your regulations? Time? Number of blogs to read/write? Hard to regulate, in my experience. Mostly, I just try to stay off of it altogether and that helps a lot. When I manage. . .

It's always funny to me to hear how other people gauge things money-wise. Like people who don't consider pedicures and eating out to be a luxury. I think they must have grown up in richer families than I did, so it doesn't surprise me, though I don't agree with them.
Mimsy Buttons said…
If you want to introduce hummus to people who are scared of it at a reception where you can't just bully people into eating it (like if they're dinner guests... :D) I suggest getting some nice crackers or thinly sliced baguette and putting a dollop on each cracker with maybe some pine nuts or little slivers of red bell pepper to make it look pretty.

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