seven days of pb&j

Tomorrow, I technically finish my most recent seven days food challenge: Bring Your Lunch to School. However, Friday was yesterday and I have no reason to eat out today or tomorrow, so I figured I’d go ahead and write about it. All in all, it was a success!

Pros:

– Cheap! This week, I used what I had lying around the house: a loaf of bread, peanut butter, Rice Krispies treats, some cookies, and some packaged drinks (I already had homemade jelly, which obviously didn’t cost me anything). This meant my food cost about $20 for the week, which boils down to about $4 a day. Tonight, I go shopping for more, with the aim of finding healthier snacks (carrots, etc.) and keeping track of exactly how much I spend.

– No lines! Cox Hall (our pseudo-mall-food-court) is absurdly busy at the lunch hour, and bringing lunch allows me to skip lines and just enjoy a peaceful meal. I’ve been eating outdoors, too, which is nice.

Cons:

– My backpack smells like peanut butter. No, really, it does. Every time I open it, I get this waft of air which smells vaguely like my lunchbox from when I was eight. I’ve always actually found that smell slightly nauseating — something about cafeterias and food which isn’t quite fresh just…well, it’s not very appetizing.

– When I get home at 12:30 (which happens at least twice a week), it’s really hard to tell myself to stay up another ten minutes to wash all my plastic containers and make my sandwich for the next day. I mean really, really hard.

– I actually have to bring a backpack, whereas I was able to get away with just my purse before. A small inconvenience, but still annoying.

The Conclusion:

Definitely cost efficient. I spent maybe $4 a day for lunch this week (and that estimate is very high), whereas I would normally spend $7 – 10 a day. That’s quite a bit of savings, especially for a student trying to save up.

I need healthier food: veggies, fruits, yogurt. It needs to happen. Also, I need meat somehow — whether I get it at dinner or whatever, it needs to happen, because it didn’t happen this week and I can’t tell you how badly I want a steak right now…which is counter-productive for that whole saving money thing.

So, I give myself an 9/10 on success for this. If I’d had some healthier food packed, it would be a 10/10, but eating a pb&j and some sugar every day does not count. Granted, it’s probably better than grease and fat, like I would get at Cox Hall…but it could stand to be better. I will most definitely be continuing this.

UPDATE: It cost me just over $12 to buy food for the upcoming week. Of course, I didn’t have to buy peanut butter or jelly, and I bought more fruit / veggies which are cheaper…but woah! Didn’t expect it to be so low! Approval!

***

On another note, I’ll probably have to jumpstart drinking no coke again with another week-long abstinence. I was trying to be “good” and only have it when I was having absurdly long days (i.e., going from seven in the morning until one in the morning on only 5 hours of sleep), but I fell into the habit of one every day for the past four days. Still better than two weeks ago, but I want it to be more along the lines of one a week.

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