Monday, July 24, 2006

Cooking up alternatives...

So, time have been hard lately. Nothing new, times are always hard financially, and when you have a family of seven that comes as no surprise. We thought that having Logan and Keri, our two oldest, go to work would change the burden, but it didn't really. Between the cost of skyrocketing fuel and the long 45 minute drive to work daily, and other prices rising we seem to be falling behaind rather than catching up.

This is life.

But I found it funny this past Saturday because of something I caught myself saying.

You see, we haven't had propane since last February, because we just can't afford it. (We have a large tank, and it is several bundred dollars to fill it up.) We managed the chill of the house fairly well until summer came, so now we don't need it for heat anymore. And we have an electric water heater and a microwave, so we've been doing okay.

Most days I eat in town, usually salads because the the heat (salads are so refreashing in the swealtering heat) and the cost of fast food. But the other day I was at the grocery store and I decided to spring for a TV dinner, and I caught myself refering to it as "real food". What I meant was that I wanted meat and veggies, and I wanted them hot. Real food has come to mean a complete meal that can't be classifed as a side dish. Once upon a time, real food was stuff that wasn't pre-made or frozen. Healthy foods that take time and effort to create. Dinners that bring everyone to the table in excitement, where we can have family time.

Don't get me wrong, I still make meals. I have an assortment of kitchen wonders that enable me to cook "better" food. It's just not as easy to whip up a fantastic meal with a electric skillet, a toaster over, and a microwave.

So, in a sense, because of the price of fuel, TV dinners have become a replacement ... and we seem to have grown distant as a family in many ways as well. Funny how things have a chain reaction.

We've got plans to fill the tank in a couple of weeks. So I'll have a stove again, for awhile at least. But it's been an eye opener.

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