As I sit on my back porch, drinking my second beer of the day which exceeded yesterday’s daily budget ($2.10 pint can of Grolsch – sale!), I should be reflecting on what I’ve learned this week, and yep, I’m thinking about money and food some more.

Oh, and listening to (horny?) squirrels scream at each other, as they are wont to do in in my backyard.*

This morning, breakfast for two people (plus a Caesar) was $26. A pint at trivia was $7.74 before tax and tip. I opted not to get a $2.30 Americano.

Ottawa is a ridiculous place full of ridiculous prices.

Now that I know I have a bit of a miserly side, I’m going to exploit it more. I bought a few groceries, and figured out unit costs (this can of Grolsch has ‘$2.10’ written on the top, the giant amount of kale I just tore up and washed is ~18¢/cup, a carrot from the 3lb bag I just bought is 19¢, each egg in the fridge is 33¢), so I get a better idea of how much I’m actually spending on food in a week, on a per-meal basis when possible. I’m going to straight-up budget so I can more quickly pay down debts, and hopefully get through two (!!!) trips this summer.

I have also signed up for a volunteer orientation at the Ottawa Food Bank and am exploring some other more communication-y volunteer opportunities in food security and/or nutrition (does the Micronutrient Initiative need me?) so I can learn and do more.

For those wondering, here is what was left at the end of the week.

I live in a cave, hence the weird lighting.

I live in a cave, hence the weird lighting.

A little bit of oat, about 1/2 cup of brown sugar (still!), red pepper flake, ginger, curry powder, coconut, as well as two cups of soup and a serving of chickpea curry (which I will pump up with the aforementioned kale and some mushrooms later).

Daily totals
Monday 85¢ (how stupid of me)
Tuesday $1.35
Wednesday $1.62
Thursday $1.73
Friday $1.58 (until midnight, when I ate homemade bread and peanut butter and tea and it was BEAUTIFUL)
oil & salt 50¢
TOTAL $7.63 (Because I have leftover curry and soup in the fridge)

I really do believe that with some boosts from elsewhere (like my planned dinner tonight), and more quantity, OBVIOUSLY, that this was not a hugely unhealthy diet, so there are things to be learned. I might start writing up some budget recipes. I’ll post the successful ones here.

For those morbidly curious, I did lose almost 5% of my body weight, but some of that was hormonal bloat, and I am fairly sure that I’ve gained it back in beer and bread already today.

Thank you again everyone who offered support, or just put up with my endless, obnoxious Instagramming. I am going to do this again next year.

Also, FWIW, I am not at all sick of oatmeal. But I think I’ll put some blueberries and peanut butter in it next time.

* Actually,they might be yelling because Hamish is out there and they are too stupid to realise that they are in NO danger from an elderly fatcat with a bell around his neck.

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