As a child, my favorite books were a series by British author Noel Streatfeild nicknamed the Shoe Books. The Shoe Books were not really a series, but rather a group of standalone novels for children about protagonists whose lives involved the arts. There was Ballet Shoes, Dancing Shoes, Skating Shoes, and Theater Shoes.
Each book held the title of my favorite for a period of time, but Theater Shoes was one that held a very specific fascination for me. Theater Shoes follows the story of Sorrel, Mark, and Holly, siblings living in England after the end of WWII. Their mother has died and their father is an officer, missing in action. The three children are sent to London to live with the grandmother they never knew and are surprised to discover they come from a family of theater royalty. Hijinks ensue.
I was obsessed with Social Studies as a kid, and knew all about the different wars. But this period of reconstruction, when there was no fighting but things were far from “normal” was brand new to me. The Forbes children are living in London after the Blitz; they regularly encounter bombed out buildings and blackout times. There is a lot of discussion about their food coupons. I was gobsmacked that even in a time of “peace” there was such extreme food rationing. There is a scene where Sorrel is dreaming about eating strawberries and wakes up, excited about the possibility that one day she’ll get to eat strawberries again. My little ten year old self could trundle down the hall and eat strawberries whenever I felt like it. This other girl, who felt so like me in a dozen other ways, fictional though she was, experienced something I didn’t fully comprehend until that moment. It’s true, what they say about young children learning empathy from books.
I was thinking about Sorrel and all the Forbses during this grocery trip. All available items, from meat to eggs to bread to ice cream, had a purchase limit. Some items weren’t available at all. Some categories had one or two options, but not a lot of variety. It reminded me of something I heard on the news from a doctor at Cornell University. He said something along the lines of, “We will not run out of food. You may not be able to find your favorite oatmeal, but there will be something you can eat for breakfast.”
And that’s the mindset I want to have over the next few weeks, as we all settle into the new normal of grocery shopping. We will not starve. We will find something. We may have to get creative with our meal planning, we may be eating some repetitious meals, but we’ll be just fine. And I want to have a Sorrel mindset, too. While there are things we can’t have right now, I trust that one day we’ll have them again. And I look forward to that day.
- Asiago Cheese-$3.39. Manager’s special!
- Avocados (4)-$3.52. *Digital Coupon* for $.50 off Avocados.
- Beech Nut Pouches (3)-$2.67. In-store sale, $.89 each.
- Blackberries, 6 oz (4)-$5.
- Creamette Pasta (2)-$2.50.
- Heritage Farm Chicken Breasts, 15.20 lb -$30.25.
- Honey Bunches of Oats-$1.99. Buy 5, Save $5.
- Ken’s Salad Dressing-$1.49. B5S$5.
- Kraft Salad Dressing (2)-$1.98. B5S$5.
- Kroger Cream Cheese (2)-$1.79.
- Kroger Eggs, 18 count (3)-$7.47.
- Kroger Pasta (2)-$2.
- Mangoes (4)-$5.
- Private Selection Whole Wheat Bread-$1.49. *Digital Coupon* for $.50 off.
- Private Selection Wildflower Turkey, 1 lb-$8.15.
- Robusto Cheese-$2.89. Manager’s Special!
- Red Gold Canned Tomatoes (2)-$2.
- Roma Tomatoes, 1.32 lb-$1.31.
- Shrimp, 2 lbs-$11.98. In-store sale.
- Simple Truth Organic Baby Pouches (6)-$6.
- Simple Truth Organic Apple Juice-$1.49. Buy 5, Save $5 stacked with a *Digital Coupon* for $.50 off.!
- Strawberries, 2 lbs-$4.99.
- Apps I’ll submit to: Fetch Rewards, Ibotta ($.10 Off Any Item), CoinOut
Total Budget: $35.89 (There’s no way. Just no way.)
Total Spent: $106.87 (Not too shabby, all things considered!)
Deducted from Next Week: $70.98 (lololololol)
Okay, with this budget. If I don’t laugh, I’ll cry. But don’t worry about us! Mr. B and I have sat down with the Home and Entertainment budgets and I think we’ll be able to make something work for groceries. I’ll update you on the next trip, the last grocery trip on the month!
Did you have a favorite book as a kid that featured food? Let me know! I’m always looking for great kids literature!
Kristen B. is wife to the best Prince around, mama to the spunkiest little princesses, and lover of all things Disney. She started her savings journey five years ago and is now dedicated to making her family’s wishes come true one coupon at a time. She is so excited to take her love of saving to the next level and share her journey with you! Click here to catch up on Kristen’s Savings and join in on your own savings adventure!