This post was sponsored by Y-USA as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.
If there is one thing that I can almost guarantee when my kids are home for the summer, it’s that my grocery bill will double if not triple for those 3 months. Don’t get me wrong I love the more relaxed schedule that comes with summer break but I don’t like the hit my pocket book takes. However, I know just how blessed my kids are. There are many families who rely on school meal programs to help make sure that their kids eat three square meals a day. To help families out this summer, The Y and Walmart Foundation have partnered up to provide 5 million meals and snacks to 250,000 kids and teens at 1,500 locations in communities throughout the nation. So not only will these kids be getting nutritious meals and snacks, they will also get to enjoy recreational and learning activities to keep their bodies and minds active. This is amazing!
To help raise awareness for the Y’s Summer Food Program, my family and I were challenged to take the Food Desert Challenge for 3 days.If your not familiar with with what the Food Desert Challenge is, it’s basically a challenge where you have to eat off of $5 for the entire day! I’ll admit I was a little nervous about having to feed a family of 5 on just $25 per day but I gave it my best shot. The first thing I did to prepare myself for this challenge was to make a meal plan for the 3 days. This is ESSENTIAL. You can’t just expect to go to the grocery store and pick up a few things and be done. You need to really be prepared and know exactly what you are going to eat each meal and make sure you have those ingredients on hand. Here is what our menu plan looked like.
- Breakfast: Eggs, Toast
- Lunch: Bacon, Spinach and Turkey Sandwiches with pretzels.
- Snack: Granola Bar
- Dinner: Chicken, Broccoli, Rice Casserole.
- Breakfast: Oatmeal, Toast and Bananas
- Lunch: Leftovers from Chicken Broccoli Rice Casserole
- Snack: Watermelon
- Dinner: Tacos
- Breakfast: Eggs, Toast and Watermelon
- Lunch: Sandwiches with Carrot Sticks
- Snack: Granola Bar
- Dinner: Spaghetti with Side Salad
I also made sure that I shopped at our Discount grocery store which offers a big savings over some of the other stores in town. This way I was able to get more bang for my buck. All in all I ended up spending just around the $75 mark which I thought was pretty good. I will admit that it was hard to stay within that budget but it’s doable with a little planning ahead. The hardest part I found with staying within that $5 per person mark was buying fresh fruits and vegetables. Those were the most expensive but I tried to stretch these out over the 3 days. And since we have our own egg-laying chickens those didn’t cost us anything. No community is safe from food insecurity. It’s happening everywhere, in every county in the United States. I encourage you and your family to take the Food Desert Challenge and help spread awareness of the Y’s Summer Food Program. It’s definitely a humbling experience.