Last Friday our senior center received an unexpected donation of USDA food (produce) boxes and gallons of milk from a nearby food bank. That food bank had a very large delivery of these items and after their own food distribution still had quite a few left and could not store them. They reached out to local churches and other food banks as well as our senior center to see if we were able to help distribute them to the community. Yes!
I contacted my 5 families that don’t have transportation that I usually deliver to once a month and all 5 were interested, and I picked up another 6 families from another “route” because their regular volunteer who delivers to them was out of town. Everyone is in about a 10-mile radius, so it was an easy delivery.
We also put the word out to our members to stop by the senior center to pick up.
Inside each produce box was a 5lb. bag of russet potatoes, 2 mini, organic watermelons, a small bag of yellow onions, and a bunch of loose sweet potatoes and carrots! And separately, the gallon of milk. It’s wonderful to be able to deliver, and receive, healthy produce.
I was really impressed with the power of the community. Because the food bank, churches and our senior center were easily able to coordinate this, a whole lot of food that might have gone to waste was distributed. Our county councilman has been instrumental in bringing resources together, and we have a very strong volunteer base. In a world where so much is going wrong, it restores my faith in basic human kindness to see this kind of effort in action. There are some very good people out there. I know I post a lot about food on here, but the volunteer aspect of this is so important to me. There are people out there who are really hurting and need help. If you are reading this, and you are one of them, please don’t be embarrassed to reach out for help.
So now, I will be prepping and cooking and freezing a whole bunch of great healthy food! Those watermelons are absolutely delicious. I plan to blanch and freeze some of the carrots (there were so many) and plan to make some sweet potato fries and potato and onion pancakes with the russets. I was really happy to receive some onions as I was totally out. I was also out of milk and needed some for a few recipes I had been planning.
This morning I went to CVS to stock back up on TP. I had a lot of extrabucks, my $10 carepass bucks and some digital coupons. I purchased 2, 12 packs of Scott TP, 2, 12 packs of Charmin TP (the mega rolls) and a 12-count pack of Tide pods. After all deductions I paid $16.47 (with tax) out of pocket. But I received $15 of extrabucks back to use on a future purchase. According to my receipt this was a 76% savings.
Yesterday evening I went over to my brothers for dinner, we had burgers and dogs on the grill. He just found out that he will need hip replacement surgery very soon, probably right after 4th of July, so we needed to discuss how I can help him during his recovery. His wife is mostly in a wheelchair now, and his son is partially disabled from a stroke so this will be challenging.
I also had lunch with a few friends last week, it was nice to catch up!
We are having a heatwave here in Maryland, in the mid 90’s, so I had to turn on the central air. I keep it at 77 during the day, and 75 at night and use a fan and so far, this feels comfortable. We will see how high my utility bill goes!