Na Na pinches her pennies (aka frugal living)

Shh… don't tell anyone I'm poor. They all think I'm living frugal and green just like everyone these days. This is a blog about a senior citizen living a frugal life, on a fixed income, in a low income food desert, and passing along knowledge from lessons learned. Some she learned from her Grandma Mama many years ago and some learned only a few days ago.

Three days of food pickups

Food bank day was Tuesday, senior commodities on Wednesday, and grocery day on Thursday.  My fridge is packed.  I don’t really like food happening all at once but that may be the way it’s going to be for a long time.  Not my scheduling but theirs.  Senior commodities gave some fresh veggies.


I got a nice surprise when I opened the bag to put the produce away.  There was lettuce and zucchini with the potatoes, onions, and carrots.   AND, a small box of grape tomatoes that’s not in the picture.  I haven’t had lettuce or tomatoes for over a year due to my dental work.  I couldn’t eat lettuce without teeth.  Tomatoes are too expensive.


I knew exactly what I wanted to do first.  The tomatoes were quickly washed and a couple popped into my mouth.  So, good!  Well the lettuce was next.  I peeled off the wilted and brown part then chopped the rest into bite size pieces.


This treasure is getting special treatment to make it last as long as possible.  I rinse it really well in cold water.  Twice.


I don’t have a salad spinner but I did put it into a couple of colanders to drain.


I couldn’t resist nibbling as it drained.  In the meantime I pulled out some canning jars and washed them.  Then loaded the lettuce.  Added a few tomatoes before I would eat them all.


I could have just put a lid on the jars and put them in the fridge.  They would last at least five days.  I want them to last longer.  IF I can resist eating it all in only a couple of days.

I pulled out the vacuum sealer.  I haven’t used that thing at all since I’ve moved here.  Its been in the back of a cabinet.  Well, it’s time I put it into use again.


All the jars were sealed and put into the fridge.  Lettuce kept this way will last a few days longer than jars without vacuum sealing.   I’ll open a jar, add some dried cranberries, sunflower seeds or walnuts, a cut up zucchini, onions, and a little home canned chicken for a delicious salad for lunch.  Five times!

Hmm… the dressing is going to be homemade mayo or some other homemade kind.  I have some homemade bread croutons in the freezer too.  Oh the possibilities!


13 comments on “Three days of food pickups

  1. Jean Bender Bontrager
    February 26, 2017

    Yeah!! Lovely fresh salad!

    • Anita
      February 26, 2017

      Even though its been 8 days since I vacuum sealed the jars the lettuce still has no sign of browning. Not even a tiny bit. I have 3 left.

  2. cripplewing
    February 21, 2017

    I never thought of using the vacuum sealer on salad …thanks for the great tip

    • Anita
      February 22, 2017

      I think you’re gonna love using it.

  3. Jane
    February 18, 2017

    This came through to me fine via e-mail notification. Congrats on all those lovely vegetables!

    • Anita
      February 18, 2017

      Thanks, I knew I posted it but it didn’t show up on the blog front page. I went back in and updated it and it showed up. I’m not sure what happened.

  4. Jasna
    February 18, 2017

    SO yummy!!! (Vegetables are scarce and very expensive in the region we live in. Sis and I went to a farmer´s market held today. I couldn´t get everything I would have liked to but did bring home two kilos of new potatoes, some lettuce, and a wonderful cabbage. Shredded cabbage slowly stewed in a little water goes superbly with potatoes. That´s what I´m planning to have tomorrow.)

    • Anita
      February 18, 2017

      That sounds good. Yes potatoes and cabbage do taste good together. I often cook the potatoes and cabbage in the same pot then serve with some cheese melted on top and a sprinkle of bread crumbs. I get a lot of cabbage from the food bank. Maybe I should write a book; 1,000 ways to serve cabbage. hee hee Do you have food banks in Patagonia?

      • Emma
        February 26, 2017

        I love cabbage and have perfected a stew. Try it with white or black beans some apple cider vinegar and apple cider for a sweet and sour effect. Yum! Red wine vinegar works too.

        • Anita
          February 26, 2017

          Ooo, sounds delicious. I wanna try it.

  5. Margie in Toronto
    February 18, 2017

    Enjoy your lovely, healthy treat! Sometimes some fresh fruit or veg is all you really want!

  6. kathi
    February 18, 2017

    Oh, i FEEL your JOY!!!

    • Anita
      February 18, 2017

      I knew you’d understand cause you’ve been there with me through so many life happenings.

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