Skipping the Fast Food

Every mom has been there.

We had chiropractor appointments at 11:45 A.M. today. Before that, we picked up my oldest daughter’s reading glasses and rushed through several errands. No time for lunch at home. And the Donna Reed in me (snort-cough) didn’t have the foresight to get a picnic packed…

After the appointments we stopped at the nearby library and then finished our errand running with a trip to Wal-Mart. Of course, the whole time I’m eying my watch and realizing that lunch is going to be after 3 P.M. if we don’t pick it up in town.

Then I reasoned, the cheapest place to pick up lunch is McDonalds…but who wants to eat hormone filled and pesticide affected meat raised by unregulated South American beef producers?

Sheesh, what a dilemma. The kids were great though, I’d promised them something to tide them over, just wasn’t sure what that something would be. See, we rarely eat out. When we do, it’s because we have something to celebrate (as in: We have some money!!! Let’s eat out!!!). Taking the girls out to lunch without dear husband just almost seems mean, in our little world of hardly-ever-eating-out.

And I know I’m not the only one that can count on one hand how many times she’s skipped McDonalds in favor of a loaf of bread and cheese for hastily assembled sandwiches while caught in town over the lunch hour…so don’t feel bad for me, I don’t!

So after consulting the girlies, we steered the shopping cart over to the dairy section and picked up cheese sticks, then to the fruit/veggie department for bananas and carrot sticks which we ate on the way home.

Pretty cheap and no complaints. Three year old fell asleep on the way home, tummy full and transferred into bed like a champ.

(While the rest of us skedaddled into the kitchen and made quesadillas! Don’t worry, we saved her one…)

So here’s my questions for you guys:

  1. Do you eat at McDonalds? :)
  2. In an average month, how many times do you eat fast food?
  3. What’s your grocery-lunch-fix for those days when you’re away from home and eating out isn’t in the budget?

Answer any or all! Looking forward to your comments…

29 thoughts on “Skipping the Fast Food”

  1. what good girls :)

    yes I eat at McDs but we prefer BK (burger king)

    6 times a month probably

    Pak n Save (grocery store) have cheap bread buns and their specials are often good too like a packet of chips

    also sometimes the bakery has specials

  2. hmmm.. we always love the pick-up-french-bread-cheese-ham-and-fruit from the grocery store. It’s a great and easy lunch and can be eaten in the car or in some parking lot!

    McDonald’s yes. once every 3 months or so.. and usually chicken nuggets, and Apple dippers, and the occasional chocolate dipped cone mmm! (I saw McSize me – or whatever that movie was)

    Fast food… maybe once or twice a month. I will say that living in Korea town, “fast food” is elevated to an art form, so it it’s hardly ever breakfast and fries.

    I always have some kind of granola/cereal bar in the car, so for exactly those days – it’s filling and somewhat nutritious.

  3. WE eat out way to much Fast food at least once a week. With just two it is hard to beat the dollar menu. One double cheeseburger is all it takes. I know we should eat healthier. We live in town there is no reason we can’t go home. It is just laziness.

    I hate to admit it but I also enjoy Chef Boyardee. These days it seems like eating the prepared processed stuff is less expensive.

    I Hope dh doesn’t read this:)

  4. If we are in town with the crew we can feed us all at DQ for around $10! We do Mc D’s rarely. The boys have a fixation on it. I think they ate it ALOT when they were little, prior to being with us.

    We eat fast food probably 4 times a month.

    Grocery lunch fix…don’t do it. Either I pack ahead of time or it has to be fast food. I live too far from town, by the time I’d get home and slap something together, I’d have some mega hungry natives. So I have to be ahead of my game and plan…that happens about once month! 😉

  5. We never ate at McDonald’s until we moved overseas and didn’t have other options. Even still, I choose anything else (Pizza Hut or KFC) over McDonald’s if we’re in a place that offers it.

    When we lived in the States, we would almost always opt for Chick-Fil-A, Panda (Chinese), or Panera or Schlotzsky’s over the major “fast foods”… all of those places have much healthier options.

    When we were in the states, we probably ate fast food (one of the places I just said) once/week. Now that we’re overseas in a place that is exceptionally expensive to live in, we might eat out once/month.

    Good question!
    ~Jess

  6. 1. Yep, once in a while.
    2. Four – we go out for lunch on Saturdays because of swimming lessons (we can’t get home until mid-afternoon). Most of the time, it’s chili at Wendy’s or a sub from Subway.
    3. I’ve been known to pack the kids granola bars, fruit and juice boxes to tide them over until we get home.

  7. Ah, I figured you had McD’s in NZ, Jen, and BK too… :)Thanks for weighing in with your answers!

    Teresa and Beck,I love the granola bar idea…what an easy fix to keep in the glove box, I’ll have to remember that.

    We have eaten McDs in the past, I really loved their salad options AND their yogurt parfaits, but the girls never went as “healthy” there, and dh is really loyal to “US Beef”…so…anyhoo my favorite fast food is definitely KFC (though I’ve heard horror stories about their birds too) or Pizza Hut.

    Andrea, I’ll risk standing by you on the Chef Boyardee. I think because I never had that kind of convenience food growing up for some reason I love stuff like ravioli out of a can. Weird. My husband and kids don’t like it at all so I rarely splurge on it! Meanwhile, I won’t tell your dh! 😉

    Jana, ‘splain how you can eat at DQ so cheaply!!! We never get out of there for less than $15 and we only go there for ice cream treats! I’m jealous…

    Jess, we are so spoiled here in the States!!! To even have the abundance in the grocery store is something I’m guilty of taking for granted. What fun to read your answers, I’m so glad to see you over here!

    Beck, lovin’ Subway here too!

    Thanks for participating ya’all! This was a fun topic…

  8. Good for you Mary :-)
    we eat at McDonald’s once a month as that’s when we do our food shopping. We have to travel an hour to the nearest supermarket so it makes sense to get McD’s or Subway while we’re up there. I make a point of spending most of our grocery money on fresh fruit and vegetables though – I’m a bit of a health food nut :-)

  9. Well, as for the ‘good for you’ bit, if money wasn’t an issue we’d eat at Subway more too! I love to keep plenty of fruits and veggies on hand also…hopefully it counteracts all the baking we indulge in around here. Baking AND eating, that is!

  10. Our DQ has .69 cheeseburgers. We do water and split a couple of large fries. No ice cream. I go into the store and buy a box of $2.50 eskimo pies for everyone and give 2 to the gas station attendant on the way out of town! 😉

  11. .69 cent cheeseburgers!!! I’m going to complain to our local DQ…the guy that employed me as a high schooler, think he’ll listen??? Hee hee.

    Lucky gas attendant!

  12. Do you eat at McDonalds?

    I used to eat there whenever I was out and about and needed a quick filler. But now since my husband is on this crazy diet I have been eating alot healthier. I definitely crave McD’s though!! But no in the last while (half year say?) I have been good.

    In an average month, how many times do you eat fast food?

    Before I would have said about 4+ times. But now we never eat fastfood. I have been reaping the rewards of healthier eating too. My complexion is WAY better than before and my hair is way nicer!! Not to say I don’t miss the fast food though…unfortunately I am a fast food junkie and I love it!!

    What’s your grocery-lunch-fix for those days when you’re away from home and eating out isn’t in the budget?

    I usually do what you said you did for your children…pick up the healthiest looking snacks (cheese, fruit/veggie platter, dried fruit) and the most cost-efficient and mow those down.

  13. Great answers! I love it that this hard diet is reaping good for both of you…goes along with Romans 8:28, “All things work together for good…” yes, even having to give up fast food. That’s wonderful about your complexion and hair showing the difference. I was talking to another homeschooling mom today and she just gave up her 5 diet cokes a day. She said she had cold sweats for two days and a bad case of “the grouchies” (to put it nicely). She said her face turned pretty much gray, it was horrible the withdrawal. But it showed her what those cokes were doing to her health.

    I used to be a cappuccino addict, and gave it up b/c I got to the point where I’d get migraines if I didn’t get my caffeine that day. Gave up coffee, etc last May and haven’t had a migraine since. That’s enough to give it up for life, but I do miss it. Nothing compares to that sweet creamy fix first thing in the morning!!! :(

  14. Oh I know what you mean!! I quit drinking coffee while I was pregnant and for the first year while I was nursing Kyle. I still nurse him but not as often (before naps, bed-time, the odd snack) but I have my 2 cups each morning. I found I got huge head-aches too if I missed my morning caffeine…but I had read something about coffee having MSG in it and so I decided to start buying organic coffees…since then, even if I miss my morning coffee, I have no side effects (other than being more tired!)…but it kinda makes you wonder. I don’t get quite the jolt I would get with my old coffee brand but at least it’s all natural and I’m not a basketcase now if I don’t get my morning fix!

  15. Wow! That’s great info to know…I’ve never heard of coffee having MSG in it! I’ve always had a slight reaction to the MSG in Chinese food, I know a lot of people do. Hmmm, now I just wish there was such a thing as organic cappuccino! I fix coffee every week for my parents (they come once a week for lunch and Bible study) and though I love the smell, I’m never tempted to drink it. Cappuccino is my weakness.

    Another funny, when I was pregnant with each of my girls I gave up the coffee because it ceased to agree with me! Lost its appeal completely. I was always thankful for that, thought it was my body’s natural way of protecting my unborn from my caffeine addiction! But then I’d always take it back up when the babies were a little older.

    Way to go on still nursing Kyle! That is SO good for him, and for you! (I know you know that!) I also tried to nurse mine past their first year, weaning very gradually till they didn’t even miss it. My middle daughter got gypped though, I became ill with pneumonia when she was 6 months old and the prolonged high fevers combined with her having to be in someone else’s care for a week. I wish I’d known then that I could have coaxed my milk supply back. :( Live and learn. To this day she is my puny child. Puny as in skinny and petite! Which is probably how God made her, judging from her birth weight and height being significantly smaller than my other two! She’s pretty hardy health-wise, thankfully!

  16. Aw that’s terrible for you! That must have been hard (pneumonia and forced weaning). I was going to wean Kyle and then we did for 2 days but I couldn’t do it (it seemed like my Baby was growing up!) so I started up again. I think he would have been fine if I had stopped but I would have missed it tons! And when I started up again (after those 2 days) he looked up at me with the biggest grin ever so it was totally worth it! But I am slowly weaning until either he decides to stop or probably around 18 months I think.

    That’s funny about coffee losing it’s appeal while pregnant…it did the same for me. I remember the week of stopping (I had major head-aches and was pretty grumpy haha!) and then after that morning sickness kicked in and I didn’t want anything that smelled near me.

    The MSG thing is weird I know! I think I still have the email from my Mom and I was shocked to read it because coffee is a major money-maker nowadays so tons of people are ingesting the MSG! It also said that another name for MSG (on food labels) is “natural flavouring”. This really shocked me because if I buy something with natural flavouring I think I’m buying healthy! Cappuccino’s are amazing, I agree! I also love Americano’s! I should stop I know but it’s like my morning refuge…Kyle watches his morning cartoons while I escape into my java-world for a little bit. haha I sound like an addict!

  17. You’re making me miss it even more!!! 😉 I totally remember my own little “java world”! If you happen to come across that email, please forward it to me! I’d love to read it and be even more enlightened!

    My email is Mary[at]homesteepedhopedotcom (remove the brackets and use .com–I typed it out to discourage spammers!)

  18. Truthfully, I miss it every day, some days more than others, but it’s not worth a migraine!

    If you find it, that’s great, if not, don’t worry about it!

  19. Sorry. I will try emailing it again. I have had a busy past couple days. I had a funeral to go to with Kyle on Thursday (he laughed through it!) Much to the dismay of several people! But most people were very happy to have a little one to lighten the mood. And then yesterday (my sister is visiting) so we spent the day in my hometown visiting and didn’t get back till late.

  20. No worries, Geri! I totally understand…and I didn’t have time to email you yesterday. Let me email you, and then you’ll have my email in your account to use whenever you have a chance. :)

    Poor Kyle! He’s too young to observe “funeral etiquette”!

  21. Yes I know. But I think everyone was mostly happy to have him there. I think it was me who was bothered most by it (well not bothered but I was trying to keep him quiet and respectful). It was my Dad’s aunt (my Great-Aunt) who passed away and I think that it meant alot to my Dad just the fact that Kyle and I showed up since a few others with children didn’t go (or left the children at home).

  22. Oh, I didn’t mean you shouldn’t have taken him, I just understand because I’ve been there. God gave me loud, wiggly children (at least when they were toddlers) so we’ve had our share of “interruptive” moments at weddings, for sure, can’t remember any at funerals off the top!

    I do wonder sometimes, if parents drug their kids with Tylenol before the church services, because their toddlers sit so nicely and/or fall asleep on their parent half the time. Mine never did this, at least not past the infant stage. Unless I remembered to pack snacks and coloring books……………

    :S

  23. LOL…no I knew you didn’t mean it like that. And I’ve seen some angelic kids in Church…but there was always my family which had 5 kids and as toddlers youngsters I know we were never those quiet creatures that some parents are blessed with (or make that way if they do the Tylenol thing like you said!). I am guessing Kyle will fit into the noisy, energetic bunch if he keeps up how he is now! I can’t keep up to him and he is just learning to walk…I can’t imagine in a few years time!

  24. Hee hee! Waving at any of my good church friends, reading this blog, whose little darlings sit so angelically at church for them…because they really do, and I am envious! (And for the record, I know you all don’t drug your children with Tylenol…)

    My children, in utero, waited till the preacher started preaching before doing jumping jacks and pull-ups in the womb. So I knew I had my work cut out for me…

    Let it reassure you that they’ve all turned into good children…though my youngest is still a work in progress!

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