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Need help on stretching food to feed many.

 
Miggy
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User ID: 23655071
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09/15/2012 04:52 PM

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Need help on stretching food to feed many.
I would appreciate any advice on stretching a small amount of food for a month. This may seem impossible when you read what I have to work with but I believe in miracles.

This is my situation...

I live in a transitional living facility of 8 apartments.

Most of these people have some type of physical disability or suffer from depression and they do not take good care of themselves when it comes to eating.

I believe God is using me to help them. I have witnessed incredible miracles occur in their lives just 6 weeks in knowing and helping them.

The little money I have had has been stretched to amazing heights. I transport them to doctor visits, the grocery store, etc. daily and always have just enough gas to get them to their destination and back again.

I have recently spent $80 of my food stamp money on basic foods and have been cooking them meals because most are unhealthy. I am particularly concerned with an 8 1/2 month pregnant woman who is not eating right- not because she doesn't want to but because she was never taught proper nutrition.

Yesterday I was blessed with a church offering me 12 loafs of day-old bakery bread and some eggs. I can NOT waste this food.

The majority of my life I was financially well-off and I never had to worry about not having food.

Can anyone give me suggestions on how to best use the following items as well as how to properly store them (such as freezing) so as not to waste one ounce?

Remember, this food MUST last clear through September because it's all I have to offer them until I get $80 more food in October.

The $80 I used apparently was NOT well spent because I am running out of food in just 5 days. It included items such as milk, butter, hamburger (stretched VERY thin), dried pasta and bread.

Because my pantry of such items as olive oil, vinegar, condiments, spices, etc. was stolen during my move here I don't have much to flavor the foods I prepare other than salt, pepper, mustard and mayonnaise.

I feel I should use whatever money I can scrape together to buy things to flavor the food so that it's pleasurable for them to eat.

This food will be used to feed two fifty year old men, two forty year old women, two thirty year old women (one pregnant), a three year old girl, a seven year old boy, and two seventy year old women. There are 10 total excluding me.

I can exist on a sandwich a day but the other residents are larger than me. And the children are active.

I would SO appreciate any creative suggestions. I just know God will come through for us and I thank you for helping me with your suggestions so that I can continue helping them.

They are really wonderful people. They've just fallen through the cracks and have no-one in their lives to care for them.

Items I have on hand:

3 lbs frozen navy beans
10 lbs potatoes
1 lb pinto beans
48 eggs
8 cups of breakfast corn flakes
2 lbs of white rice
4 cans of green beans
2 cans of peaches
2 onions
1 small can of tuna
1 large bag of egg noodles
2 boxes of Macaroni and Cheese
3 sticks of butter

Jar of ketchup
Jar of mayonnaise
Salt
Pepper


Much love to all of you, Miggy
Be Still and know that I am God.
-Psalms 46:10
Texan Buckeye

User ID: 1533753
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09/15/2012 05:04 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
bump

For ideas.


Yikes, Mig, looking at your list, the only thing you can freeze is the bread. And you should. I'm thinking, but wow! Is there a food pantry in your town that could help?
They also serve who stand and wait. John Milton
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:09 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
All I can recommend is that you do not use the rice and beans separately, but combine them. Rice is a good carb, and beans have protein, but only vegetable protein. Combined they act in synergy to produce a dish that is filling but also provides complete protein as would a meat dish.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:10 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Get all of these people enrolled for food stamps. I suppose that may not help until the first of October.
If you let your area churches know of your plight, they will help you, so that you won't be alone with the responsibility. Local bakeries donate to needy homes or organizations. Local food banks also. There are many sources of help for you to increase the quantity of the food you have. Many people are harvesting food from gardens now too, so many vegetables would be availabe to you at no cost.....people just need to know about your need. Radios, local tv , newspaper will let people know for you... definitely churches will help
fleshette

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09/15/2012 05:11 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Do you have a paypal maybe people would like to help you with $$$.

Bread can be frozen and baked again later. Or if it's really stale- bread pudding. From your ingredients I see a lot of casseroles.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:20 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
3 lbs frozen navy beans
10 lbs potatoes
1 lb pinto beans
48 eggs
8 cups of breakfast corn flakes
2 lbs of white rice
4 cans of green beans
2 cans of peaches
2 onions
1 small can of tuna
1 large bag of egg noodles
2 boxes of Macaroni and Cheese
3 sticks of butter

Jar of ketchup
Jar of mayonnaise
Salt
Pepper
 Quoting: Miggy

that's not enough to feed them :( you need more vegetables and fruits.

but you can combine most of the ingredients into a thick meal soup. lasts maybe a week, if you boil it daily.

stale bread and eggs always go nice together in a large frying pan. you can easily serve a few meals each week this way. make sure the bread keeps dry and without mold.

you can turn the egg-noodles with the peaches, some of the butter (and some additional sweetener and spices, if available) into a icecold dessert; but you'll need a binding agent, like milk, to cook it all in. you might have desert for a few weeks; it will keep fresh because you freeze it, after it cooled down.

good luck!
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:20 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Just put the word out for your need....people will help you.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:20 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
I sympathize with your situation. I have never had to make due with that amount of food to due 8 people. I have to admit I would be at a loss.

6 boiled eggs and salt, pepper and mayo would make enough egg salad for sandwhiches. Eggs provide protien.

rice and beans are delicious and nutritious. Beans provide protien. Maybe add a little onion to beans for flavor

Potatoes are filling and to maybe boil one potato for each person for a meal add butter salt and pepper and cook the pintos.

I have to admit I am a total loss on how to accomplish this. Use any leftovers for a soup with a ketchup base.

Boy I pray for you and your situation, and pray that the loaves and fishes multiply. Amen and Amen.hf
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:20 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
I sympathize with your situation. I have never had to make due with that amount of food to due 8 people. I have to admit I would be at a loss.

6 boiled eggs and salt, pepper and mayo would make enough egg salad for sandwhiches. Eggs provide protien.

rice and beans are delicious and nutritious. Beans provide protien. Maybe add a little onion to beans for flavor

Potatoes are filling and to maybe boil one potato for each person for a meal add butter salt and pepper and cook the pintos.

I have to admit I am a total loss on how to accomplish this. Use any leftovers for a soup with a ketchup base.

Boy I pray for you and your situation, and pray that the loaves and fishes multiply. Amen and Amen.hf
Texan Buckeye

User ID: 1533753
United States
09/15/2012 05:21 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Miggy, here are 2 threads of Nine's that are really good and could give you some ideas. I know you don't have alot of what you need, but maybe reading through will help you figure out substitutes.

Thread: Using Your Food Storage......Recipes and Ideas

Thread: Make a Mix and Substutute
They also serve who stand and wait. John Milton
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 19824705
United States
09/15/2012 05:23 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Southerns were always great at stretching food from being very poor. Look up some sites on basic southern cooking, i.e. chicken and dumplings, etc.
anabel

User ID: 16007817
United States
09/15/2012 05:26 PM

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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
shepherds pie.

ground beef
spices
instant potatoes
a little cheese.

just cook the meat, put it in a cake pan, sprinkle some cheese on it. top with instant mashed potatoes.(for some reason they work better than fresh potatoes).
top that with cheese and bake.
howdy
anabel

User ID: 16007817
United States
09/15/2012 05:29 PM

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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
pinto beans and potatoes

soak the beans overnight.
put in crockpot with can of chopped tomatoes, add water to fill it up 2/3 of the way.
when the beans start getting soft add chopped potatoes,
onions if you like, spices, and salt and cook till soft.

Last Edited by deadcat bounce on 09/15/2012 05:30 PM
howdy
Miggy (OP)
Ever yours. Ever mine. Ever ours.

User ID: 23655071
United States
09/15/2012 05:29 PM

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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Thank you all so MUCH for these wonderful ideas!

I just knew you guys would come through for me.

I have been boiling the eggs since I believe egg salad will make tonight's meal.

I am also going to make potato soup.

And of course potato salad.

Again, thank you.

I really love you guys.

hugs

Miggy
Be Still and know that I am God.
-Psalms 46:10
Texan Buckeye

User ID: 1533753
United States
09/15/2012 05:31 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Here's another site with really good recipes and substitutions. Miggy, I hope some if this helps.

[link to www.grandpappy.info]
They also serve who stand and wait. John Milton
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 11559373
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09/15/2012 05:32 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
You've got to be thinking about inexpensive ways to make large amounts with very little. So balanced meals with multiple side dishes is out of the question.

If you have access to a printer you need to be couponing, this is a fact. if you live where there are publix stores you can use iheartpublix.com, otherwise just google for a couponing site for stores in your area. BOGO sales + 1 coupon for each item = free or extremely cheap.

Personally I'd figure out a way to invest in a 20lb bag of rice, some soy sauce and maybe a cabbage once a week for the remainder of this month. Soy sauce would run you roughly $2, 20lb bag of rice probably less than $10, and 1 cabbage a week is maybe $2 - $3 a week. Instantly you've got yourself an inexpensive stir fry base that you can mix in whatever else you have. Also you can vary the dish day by day to keep things from getting boring. White rice, a bit of soy sauce, black pepper, maybe a 5th of the chopped cabbage. Then maybe one day add some beans, another day add 2 eggs. You can toss in frozen peas if you can pick those up. Onions, really whatever you want.

Learn to make soup from scratch. Save discarded meat fats, bones, etc to make stock. bread goes good with soup.

Also, if you can spare the investment you need to be thinking about a cheap and effective renewable garden. The absolute cheapest thing I can tell you to do that will make an immediate impact is to buy 1 chive and 1 leek at the food store. They need to be uncut and have a tiny bit of their white roots still left. As long as you can see the bottom white part you're set. Then just plant them. You can even plant them in a cup of dirt and leave outside your door. They will thrive and continue to grow pretty much forever. Just cut off the arms and leave the base of the chive or leek. The regrow very quickly, maybe a week or two. so for a $3 investment you've got a sustainable vegetable that adds nutrition and loads of flavor. They both make great additions to home-made soups like potato leek, egg drop and many more.

If making money is a problem try sites like taskrabbit.com, mturk.com, or zaarly.com. You won't make a lot, but something is better than nothing. But seriously, couponing.
Anonymous Coward
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United Kingdom
09/15/2012 05:32 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
I'm certainly no cooking expert but I do know that cooking meals on the large scale always works out a great deal cheaper than cooking small meals frequently.

I suggest a couple of things: firstly, try & get a stack of sealable, reuseable jars they use for things like jam (I think you guys call them Mason jars?) & a catering size pan.
I'll bet if you put out the word they will come to you :)

Cook up a giant batch of stew/chilli/soup or whatever you can make with the ingredients you have, then divide it up into portions, taking care to ensure that the jars are sterile & sealed while hot. That way you can distribute meals over several days or even store for weeks/months.
That will save a LOT of money & make the ingredients you have go a lot further.

Secondly, & just as important.... start taking better care of yourself! I hope you were joking about only eating a sandwich a day? You need to eat better than that or you'll be no use to anyone.

Best of luck! I applaud your amazing effort!

hf
Psych

User ID: 903456
Netherlands
09/15/2012 05:37 PM

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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Doing groceries, cooking, and taking care of them is very nice of you to do but why not let them pay for their own food?
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 11559373
United States
09/15/2012 05:38 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Not the most honest thing in the world, but you can always go into fast food chains and ask for condiments. They will almost never question it and just assume you forgot to ask with your drive through order. many times they leave that stuff out for people to grab inside the shop too. Find a taco bell, endless amounts of free taco sauce. They offer like 6 or 7 different types now, green sauce, roasted pepper sauce, hot sauce, etc. All free if you just walk in for a handful.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:42 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
I have an idea and you can check on this. Go to dhs and explain the situation, how you are feeding these people and how they live under a single but divided into separate units. that you are providing meals to them. Ask if you can put all them on your foodstamp application with their permission of course because you are preparing daily meals for all of them. If the worker is unsure or says no, please go to the supervisor and plead and explain the situation to her. Pray about it before hand and maybe God will free up any obstacles you may face in dealing with this. If all goes well you will be granted enough food stamp money to feed all of them all month long and every month from here on out. God Bless!hf

Also, I would suggest meatless dishes or dishes that utilize soy based meat. We do not have to have meat at every meal. These are food items that stretch and go a long way:
Beans
Rice
Flour self rise for biscuits
Flour all purpose for gravy
bulk 50 lb potatoes can be bought at the local Marvins,or farmers coop
chicken bullion is usually purchased cheaply in the bag in the mexican food aisle, for around $4.00. It has about 12 ounces of bullion seasoning. These can flavor up rice and soup.
Spaghetti noodles can double as spaghetti, made into chicken noodle soup. You can buy one can of chicken from the dollar store for about a dollar, and add chicken bullion for flavoring.
Always buy chicken leg quarters they are about 6.00 for a ten pound bag. Two pieces can be used for a full meal when combined with rice and soy sauce, you can flavor it with bullion as well.
When I lived with my grandma we always fed about 14 people a day on less than $80 a month, we had eggs from our chickens, and a small garden for spinach greens, wild poke salad had to be cooked a long time though, biscuits each meal, fried potatoes every meal, pinto beans every evening with spinach. Potatoes with biscuits and gravy, and eggs each morning. Lunch was usually cornbread, greens, and beans. I ate this way for years, and everyone got their fill. We seldom if ever ate meat. Our protein came from eggs and beans. Sometimes we would buy a bushel of apples and my grandma would make fried apple fritters.
Basic list:
Milk or dried milk (it goes further)8.00 box
vegetable oil 3.00
bulk sugar 7.00
bulk potatoes 12.00
Large jar of jelly 5.00
Bulk 10 lb Flour self rising, and all purpose both 6.00
Spinach or Greens several 3.00
Bulk Pinto Beans 10.00
Bulk Rice 6.00
fresh vegetables for soup 4.00
Large chicken bullion by the bag 4.00
Chicken leg quarters 6.00
Cornbread mix 2.00
Large container of eggs 4.00

total 80.00
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:44 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Miggy, call a wholesale food company, like MacDonald's Consolidated (supplier to Safeway's) or similar and ask to speak with the produce buyer, tell him your story and ask if they have any products to help you out.

I work for a supplier like this and the food bank gets product weekly from us.

If you are unsure where to call, just call a major grocery store and ask them who their grocery supplier is.

Good luck to you. hf
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:49 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
make a kickstarter, make the rewards the people not dying.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:51 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
When my family went through lean time, we ate a lot of fried potato sandwiches. Fry with a little salt and pepper. Very good with mayo.

Pork Butts are cheap and lots of meat on them to use in a variety of different ways...mixed with rice, sandwiches, mixed with potatoes, wrapped in tortillas, etc. Can be cooked in crock pot to save on electricity.

Soup is good to stretch a meal. Use the bones from a chicken to make the broth. Whole chicken is cheaper than pieces. Bone broth is very healthy. Cook the chicken for about an hour in water until done. Pull the meat off the bone, then put the bone back in the water and cook for 2-3 hours (or in the crock pot for a long time). Strain. add your veggies and chicken...rice...potatoes...whatever.

I pray that God will bless you for your generous heart and give you wisdom to know how to stretch the food you have.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:51 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
I could offer some good suggestions Miggy, I worked as a chef for years, but I'm curious, do these folks have some things they could spare ?

Odds and ends they might have sitting around in their kitchens, spices, herbs, etc ?

ETA, how'd the race go the other day ?
Philligan
in rainbows

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09/15/2012 05:54 PM

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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Miggy your a saint for putting forth the effort.
everything in its right place
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:55 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Not trying to be mean but these people should have something even if not much.It is not your responsibility to feed them.They most likely already get food stamps and unless they are buying their food with it then you need to take what you get and plan for you.I dont know how you make it for one person on $80 now.Trying to feed a bunch of neighbors is not wise.
I hate to say it but you are setting your self up to get used in a big way.I know you are a giving person but right now we are in a crisis almost and you need to plan for YOU.These people were eating before you moved there and they will be doing so if you leave.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 05:59 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
The United Methodist Church in your town has a food donation and gleaning program. Go talk to the pastor.

And there may be garden gleaning programs in the county where you can get stuff out of the fields leftover after the machine harvesting is done. I know you have no problem working working the soil. ;-)
King Russ

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09/15/2012 06:00 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Miggy go to the nearest Catholic church and tell them you need food. Then tell them to fix their calendar system so that the hunger problem gets fixed.
[link to newjerusalemcalendar.com]


Sat Aug 6/30/12
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 06:03 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Doing groceries, cooking, and taking care of them is very nice of you to do but why not let them pay for their own food?
 Quoting: Psych


OP .... how long are you planing to do this?
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 06:05 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
Churches have food closets to help the needy.
Anonymous Coward
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09/15/2012 06:06 PM
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Re: Need help on stretching food to feed many.
You can take the tuna and mix it with the Mac and Cheese. You then have Tuna Noodle Casserole.

I take potatoes put them in the microwave. I prick them and put them each in a ziploc bag for four minutes. Then I brown the potatoes, with the skins on. I then use one egg per person, and mix them well, salt and pepper and add them to the potatoes. If I have cheese I add that. You then have a "breakfast scramble." People love it.

Cook the pinto beans all day, flavor them with salt, pepper garlic. You can put them in a large saucepan. Cover them with water. Let the water come to a boil. Then let them sit covered for a hour. Then cook them on low heat until tender. You can mix them with the rice.

Put the peaches in the bottom of a 13x9 cake pan. Sprinkle a yellow box cake mix on top. Sprinkle with cinnamon, and then cut up 1/2 cup of butter and place that on top. Cook at 375 for 45 minutes.

You can also make your own potato soup. Look for an easy recipe online.

Honestly, though it may not sound like it, you have quite a bit on hand. I have had times, in the past, where I would have to get by on eggs and oatmeal for a couple of weeks. I have learned that feeling sorry for myself didn't work, I know you know that too. I made the best of it, and I never starved, I am still here to live another day.

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