My 15 day challenge

As most of you are aware, Jake, along with two teenagers from his Senior High Youth Group a.k.a. SHYG, left on Wednesday for an amazing mission trip to Ugweno, Tanzania . They will be gone for a total of 15 days. That makes 15 days where I am only responsible for myself along with my two other loves, Dietrich (or D-boy as we like) and Klaus (Klausie).

Since moving in with Jake, we have gotten into the routine of going grocery shopping every week and attempting to plan out the majority of our meals or have a “fend for ourselves” night. We do have our days where we find ourselves going to the store to pick up this or that or something that we are craving. We also like to treat ourselves to a dinner out usually once a week. As for lunches go, I typically pack my own lunch either finding something new or eating leftovers. Jake on the other hand has a standing “Taco Tuesday” with a good friend and will eat whatever I pack for him on the other days.

Jake and I recently began a monthly budget and were discussing what it would look like while he was gone. As I was thinking that I would not be spending as much money on groceries, I thought it would be fun to not go grocery shopping at all and eat only what we have in the house. Not that Jake and I have an excess amount of food, but I do feel that we have a lot of food in our cupboards and freezer that need to be eaten sooner rather than later. Jake agreed that it would be a fun little experiment and something I could share on my blog.

So as I was thinking on how this would play out, I realized there had to be some rules. They are as follows:

  1. I am allowed to eat out lunch at least once a week. (This is not unusual as most weeks I don’t eat lunch out at all)
  2. I am allowed to eat out if I am invited out with a group of people or friends (if the invite is at lunch time, it counts as my one lunch out that week).
  3. I am allowed to go to the grocery store and purchase only the following: Yogurt. (and this is because I LOVE yogurt and eat it just about everyday).
  4. I am allowed to eat food at events such as an upcoming wedding, bachelorette party and work meetings. 
  5. I will not be keeping track of my beverages. 
To be fair to myself and you (and because I know you are all dying to know what I have to choose from), I have recorded what we have in our cupboards, freezer and fridge.
CUPBOARDS:
2 Jars of Classico spaghetti sauce
1 can of Trader Joes O’s
1 jar of peanut butter
1 half jar of almond butter
1 canister of quick oatmeal
1 can of tuna
2 cans of smoked ham (5 ounces each)
1 can of Trader Joes Chicken Chili with beans
1 can of Campbells grilled chicken and sausage gumbo
1 can of sauerkraut
1 can of black beans
1 can of Kidney beans
1/2 box of Wheat Thins
1/2 box of Club crackers
 1/3 box of Hot and Spicy Cheez-Its
5 packages of microwave popcorn
1/2 bag of popcorn kernels
1 package of chocolate chip muffin mix
1 package of triple berry muffin mix
1/2 a small bag of animal crackers
1 small bag of peanuts in the shell
1 bag of small marshmallows
1 small bag of Munchies (snack size)
6 small bags of Somersaults (snack size)
1 box of angel food cake
1 pound of elbow macaroni
1 pound of wide egg noodles
1 bag of boil in bag Uncle Ben’s whole grain rice
3 sleeves of saltine crackers
2 sleeves of graham crackers
ON THE COUNTER/OPEN SHELF:
3 whole wheat hot dog buns
2 whole wheat tortillas
6 white tortillas
one cup of homemade chex mix
1/2 bag blue corn tortilla chips
1/2 bag of potato chips
very small amount of salt and pepper chips
1/2 box of rice cereal
1/2 box of corn cereal
1/2 box of Kashi Go lean cereal
1/2 box of waffle crisp cereal
1/2 box of Golden crisp cereal
6 peanut butter cookies
4 bite size peanut butter snickers
IN THE FRIDGE:
3 red apples
3 eggs
1/2 gallon milk
1/2 gallon almond milk
leftover potato salad
4 slices of roast beef
6 turkey dogs
1 jalapeno brat
3 mozzarella balls
1/2 brick of pepper jack cheese
1/2 brick cheddar cheese
Very small amount of french onion dip
2 containers of Chai tea
homemade strawberry vinaigrette
1/2 bag spring salad mix
leftover guacamole
2 boiled chicken breasts
leftover BBQ chicken and caramelized onions that would make one quesadilla
*There are a ton of condiments, but I thought I would spare you all.
IN THE FREEZER:
one bag of garlic fries from Trader Joes
one bag of frozen tilapia Filets (about 6 left)
one box of Twin Bings (guesstimate about 15 left)
1 tombstone frozen pizza
5 Trader Joes hash browns
one box of sausage (guesstimate about 10 left)
3-4 bags of frozen fruit
7 frozen bananas
1/2 bag of frozen shredded hash browns
1 bag of frozen peas
1/2 bag of frozen corn
2 pieces of naan bread
a gallon size bag full of chocolate chip, and m&m pieces for baking
Well’s Blue Bunny Wedding Cake batter ice cream
2 chicken taquitos
a bag of lil smokies
Now that we have that out-of-the-way, let the challenge begin!  I will be updating my blog every couple of days to let you all know what I have been putting together for my meals.
So let’s begin with what I have already had for the first two days of my challenge.
Wednesday lunch:
I had a left over roast beef and spinach wrap and homemade potato salad from my lunch on Tuesday.
Dinner:
One turkey hotdog and potato chips and dip
Thursday Lunch:
I took advantage of working away from the office and had a nice lunch at Panera.  I love their “You pick 2” meal deal and devoured a bowl of french onion soup and their steak and blue cheese salad. Delicious.
Dinner:
One turkey hotdog and left over potato salad
One bite size snicker’s bar.
I feel that I should note that I realize that this is the farthest thing from trying to eat well and following my P90x diet. I have fallen off of that bandwagon a week in. But in my defense, I gave fair warning that I never in my life have attempted to follow a food plan or diet, or what have you. To me, food is way too important to limit yourself in any capacity and it should always come down to portion control.
With that being said, I encourage any ideas on meals I could put together with what I have and any ideas to new rules!
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