Eating on SNAP, the start

Warning- this might offended you, read at your own risk. I also started writing this before I saw all the news pertaining to SNAP and potential changes to it.

Over the weekend my Father in Law (FIL) was down and we ended up talking about SNAP benefits. We didn’t set out to talk about SNAP but it came up in conversation about the local meat market and the veggie shop. Between us 3 adults we agreed that SNAP covers to much (ie Soda, Candy, Cookies, Ice Cream) and that it is possible to eat healthy on SNAP benefits, even if people don’t say it is. We did acknowledge that some of those people that have tried it didn’t amend their food preferences (filet of beef for dinner, and shrimp for lunch) to fit with their new food budget.┬áNo, you can’t eat expensive cuts of beef, seafood, lamb, or pork, on a SNAP budget. You can however, eat healthy chicken dinners, lunches, and breakfasts on a SNAP budget, was the concession of us adults. So, I wanted to prove it.

Pretty please remember, that my house doesn’t get SNAP benefits. Even in College when I did qualify for SNAP I didn’t peruse it. My history involves a period of time living in government low income housing, and SNAP benefits and… the failure… of my bio mom to teach me how to live without it. She was totally okay with living on the government, and I am not. Weird right? Usually we see children with histories like mine, end up like their parents. I went the opposite direction. I will make it without the government hand holding. It’s hasn’t always been pretty, but my successes and my failures are all my own. Sure, it helps being in a dual income house as a married adult. But, successes and failures are all on us and it still take a lot of work and dedication to make the future we want, the reality we live.

Anyways, back to SNAP and living on it. I looked it up and the average in 2015 for SNAP benefits was $379, so in 2017 dollars that is about $390. Assuming we got the average, I decided to go with $390 as the food food budget for the month of July.

A budget of $390 for a month, equals about $97.50 a week in grocery spending for 21 meals, or about $4.64 per meal and $1.55 per person per meal. Scary numbers!! Yes, those are some intimidating numbers to face and try to live on. A large part of the fear though, comes from change and the daunting task of thought shifting. Also, I would just like you point out that the average SNAP benefits falls just a few dollars above the Thrift food plan for the USDA and about $110 dollars under my already set up budget. So while scary, it’s not totally out of my ability to do. We just won’t be eating fancy cuts of meat or seafood in July; unless its a killer deal!

 

Up next, Week 1 of July Recap!

Enjoy!

 

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