Friday, 2 May 2014

Day 5 #BelowTheLine: 99.5p for three meals

Day 5 #BelowTheLine: 99.5p for three meals

Finally it's the end of #BelowTheLine - what a week!

My last day living #BelowTheLine started with another smoothie - this time with strawberries and raspberry yoghurt. The yoghurt was the last of the reduced ones I bought a few days ago. About four days out of date but tasted absolutely fine and I'm still standing! Breakfast total = 17.5p

Lunch was tricky as I was travelling to Sheffield for work so needed a packed lunch. Egg rolls it was - a bit stinky on the train though! More reduced rolls (4.5p each) and two of our cheap farm eggs (6.5p each) meant 22p for lunch. I also managed to keep a few strawberries aside from the breakfast smoothie as a mid-afternoon snack.

Dinner was time for a bit of creativity with a pack of Morrisons sausage meat reduced from £2.99 to 69p. We chopped an onion (10p) and mixed it into the meat before shaping them in to patties and cooking them on a griddle. Add to that the leftover reduced potatoes (19.5p), the rest of the reduced spinach (16.5p) and a veg patch leek (5p) and we reached a total of £1.20 for two people. So dinner per person was 60p.

That made a grand total of 99.5p for my three meals today.

And there we have it - #BelowTheLine is over. I hope I've shown that it is possible to eat three decent, healthy and balanced meals on £1 a day - hard work, yes... but it is possible. However I'm acutely aware that if you're living in real poverty it would be a very different matter.

Last year I was invited to speak about cooking on a budget at Bromford Support - a social business that helps people who are dealing with issues such as unemployment, homelessness and poverty. I met a man who had been struggling but, thankfully, had got his life back on track. He told me how he had resorted to picking food out of bins to survive. He said he could live out of bins or turn to crime. He chose bins.

His reality at the time was that when he did have a little money to buy food he ended up buying ready to eat food or takeaways. Why? Because he had no cooking utensils. And no money for electricity and gas to power an oven or microwave - or even boil a kettle.

Eating cheaply is a fun challenge for me - not a necessity. I make the most of the yellow stickers and bargain offers to save money for the nicer things in life. So if you've ever read my blog and gone out and saved a few pounds here and there on your weekly shop as a result, please consider donating a little and sponsoring my #BelowTheLine £1 a day challenge. I'm raising money for The Global Poverty Project and there is still time to donate at:

Thanks to everyone who has donated so far and helped me to raise £220.

I'm back to eating normally tomorrow - no more £1 a day for the time being... but I'll still be hunting down bargains to turn them into something fabulous so watch this space for more cut-price action coming soon!

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