What happens is the kids get more interested in our (healthy) food when we all go get it at the farmer's market. We get kids preparing carrots for themselves. And kids in raptures over spicy black bean hummus on homemade wheat tortillas.
Problem? I can't seem to get the dollar amount below $150 for our weekly groceries if we utilize the farmer's market, even with a very simple weekly menu plan. I've tried totting up the list for regular grocery store (milk, butter, cheese, toilet paper, grapes, bananas, flour, rice, coffee, etc.) and farmer's market (one treat, four veggies or so, a fruit or two, honey or jam or oil or hummus, etc.), and each combination seems to add up to $150 or more. And I want our weekly budget to be $100. I couldn't get to the magic number when we lived in Florida nor in Texas.
(I should mention we have a year-round, rain or shine market in our town. Pretty awesome.)
Another thing: We have to be just as careful about overspending at the farmer's market as at the regular store. Everything looks (and is) delicious. Great coffee, yummy bread, a snack from the most fantastic food trailer ever (The Peached Tortilla!), bags of kettle corn, bakery goods... There are a million ways to spend $100 at the market without having bought any of the basics.
But negatives aside, we got all of the following food for $50 at our farmer's market today:
- bag of carrots: $4
- two loaves of homemade bread, one "gourmet" with nuts and such that Xander picked out: $11
- one pound of ground beef from grass-fed cows: $7.50
- small bag of kale: $4
- small head of cabbage: $2
- large bag mixed lettuces: $4
- a dozen eggs: $4.50
- two beautifully frosted cookies: $5
- one pint of strawberries: $4
- a container of spicy black bean hummus: $4
Obviously, I could save a lot of money baking our bread, but I'm sick of my own homemade bread and so is my family. These loaves are going to be fantabulous. And if I hadn't bought those, I would have just "wasted" the money on a bag of coffee or a quart of milk anyway.