Sunday, August 30, 2009


Question: Why am I doing this blog?

I had a life altering thing happen to me this summer... I grew food in a garden.

It started as a fun family project. The kids enjoyed helping to prepare the area, pick out the plants and put them in the ground. The first few waterings were 'fun'. Their excitement then roller coastered a bit. Their interest was peaked when we discovered a few fatty-boom-batty catapillers munching on the tomato plants, when the hugeomungeous frog made the garden his home, as well as the dreaded ground wasps, and of course, when the first vegetables were ready to be picked.
The rest of the time, the garden was the place mom was when they couldn't find her in the house.

I became a little obsessed. I checked it 2-3 times a day. Sometimes, admittidly, there was no reason to check it that often. BUT, sometimes it seemed as though huge changes occured since the last peek. I didn't want to miss a thing.... heaven forbid a piece of food break off the stem because I negleged to pick it in time.

I also didn't want to put ANY chemicals on or near my garden. ANY. We eat that stuff! I don't want it contaminated. My once well fertilized lawn became neglected. I looked for home made, organic and herbal remedies to everything on, around or near the garden.

Wait a minute. I am coupon queen. I have friends who call me 'Coach' because I taught them how to save tons of money using coupons and sales to the max to stock our homes full of food. Boxes and boxes of cereals in my pantry, my freezer full of the cheapest chicken possible purchased at rock bottom prices. You need a pop tart? I got 'em. Diet soda? cases and cases from a killer deal. I had it all, high fructose corn syrup, partially hydrogenated everything, modified whatever - but it was cheap!

It clicked. Then I spent quite a few hours researching.

I cleared out, used up and transformed the pantry, freezer and fridge. It wasn't ok for ME to put nastyness on or in my food but it was ok for others to put it on or in my food? WHAT?!

I have been cooking and making things from scratch more than I have EVER done in my life. I used to pride myself on being a rip and pop chef. Rip it open and pop it in the microwave or in a pan on the stove. Now I am chopping, dicing, fileting, pureeing, grinding, etc. This is new. This is a journey that has already been full of mistakes and learning, but this is also fun. I am finding it to be challenging but also rewarding to use new ingredients, new techniques and ways to keep it healthy, as natural as possible, AND satisfy my cheapness factor.

Yes, I had a life altering summer. But now it is september. The kids are back at school.... i have a whole new challenge *dun dun duhhhhhh* school lunches. Crap. I can't rely on my trusty friends from my past. Dora yogurt, barbie fruit snacks, the gushers that my son thinks are "totally wicked". They may look cute and cuddly, but I can't be fooled anymore - even mickey mouse has something modified and high fructosey up his sleeve.

so, back to the beginning. What was the question again? oh yeah... Why am I doing this blog?
a. because I have a family picture-y type blog and I think my mother in law would rather see y kids' faces and not lunches. 2. because my friend michelle has one and I think it is cool. And lastly, because I need to keep myself in check. It is way too easy to be tired at night or rushed in the morning and I could sooo easily fall back into the ploys of the cute and cuddly fruit snack characters.. or worse, buy a lunchable or two. So, pardon all my gramatical errors and my lower case i's. My overuseage of comas and made up words. Join me on this journey to celebrate the everyday occurance called LUNCH.


  1. Love it Amanda. I'm hooked already. :)

  2. I. LOVE. THIS. BLOG! You are my hero...I want to be more like you. I want to live in Texas and be your neighbor! I'll be checkin' on you Ball...not stalker style...well, maybe a little stalker-ish...I appologize in advance. You are awesome. :)

  3. holly - love ya girl. i would love it if you were my neighbor! just don't get all 'single white female' on me.

  4. Love this blog Amanda. We have been eating mostly organic and unprocessed for some time now. I made my own baby food...yep I am that mom. Lunch is the hardest meal of the day for me. I will definitely be reading those posts. I am also Holly's sister-in-law in TEXAS!

  5. Thanks, christa! nice to 'meet' you, Holly's SIL! I did my own babyfood too, but I slipped into the prepackaged route as soon as toddlerhood hit - sounds like that won't happen to you, though! Thanks for reading!

  6. I have just found your blog and I can't put it down. I am trying to read it from the beginning. I am a teacher and mother of two. I am also trying to be as natural as possible and pack lunches for me and my oldest. I will be tuning in!! Thanks

  7. Your lunches are beautiful Amanda! Celebrating lunch is a fantastic gift you are sharing with your kids and your readers. I'd love you to check out my new EasyLunchbox System. Launched in Dec. of 2009. You might have fun making your fabulous lunches in my compartmentalized containers. - Kelly Lester, mom and CEO,



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