Rep. Stephanie Flowers of Pine Bluff checks in with her family's shopping list for three days on the $3-a-day Food Stamp allotment,
a project of the Hunger Coalition in which a number of legislators are participating:
2 lb. bag of all purpose flour
2 lb bag of cornmeal
2 lb. bag of sugar
1 can spaghetti sauce
1 small bag of spaghetti
ground beef that cost $2.71
6 bananas @ .48 cents a lb.
1 can of jack mackerel (the mackerel was swapped out at home for a dozen eggs, as I realized I needed eggs for the banana bread
two bunches of turnip greens
Check the jump for her thoughts on hunger and the experiment.
REP. FLOWERS LETTER
Hello to all. I'll be glad when I can choose what I want to eat, too, Kathy. Zeri will be even more glad about it. I caught him sneaking some Pringles today. That put another thought in my brain - hunger will make you do wrong! Several years ago, I recall reading in the local newspaper that a juvenile was arrested for stealing crackers and a can of sardines. And, I recall thinking at that time that that child was probably hungry. I did not eat breakfast this morning, as I left the banana bread I prepared on Monday for Zeri to eat again for breakfast. I did have a slice for breakfast on Tuesday. We ate banana bread for dinner on Monday. The most we have eaten so far is spaghetti for dinner last night. Tonight is the big dinner night though. I bought 2 bunches of turnip greens, @.99 cents each; I'll prepare them with some oil and spices. The greens should go well with the leftover spaghetti (provided Zeri has not eaten it all by the time I get home), and some hotwater cornbread. This is the list of groceries I purchased for $18.04: 2 lb. bag of all purpose flour; 2 .lb bag of cornmeal; 2 lb. bag of sugar, 1 can spaghetti sauce, 1 small bag of spaghetti, ground beef that cost $2.71, 6 bananas @ .48 cents a lb., 1 can of jack mackerel (the mackerel was swapped out at home for a dozen eggs, as I realized I needed eggs for the banana bread which if taken back to the store would have resulted in about .29 cents more in my pocket.)
This has been a good experience for me and my 15 year old son. He said to me today after asking when will this be over, that he is glad we do not have to live like this. Sometimes we take so much in life for granted, and it's just been good to have to reflect on all that is good about my life, and how fortunate I am not to have to be so limited in having basic needs like food, and transportation. I don't have a chain grocery store in my neighborhood, and to get to the nearest one I would have to drive, which is more money for gas for my car. If I could not get transportation to the larger chain grocery, then I would have to buy for the cornerstore, which is much more expensive.
I've got to run now cause I can hardly wait to put the greens and cornbread on.