Saturday, January 2, 2010

First Results from the Randomizer!

Last Wednesday night we used Mr. Bowles' Amazing Marketplace Scenario Randomizer for the first time - something we will be doing every Wednesday evening during the rationing year. The roll of the die indicated that there would be three scenarios for the this week's shopping. They are:

Salad Oils - None available

Frozen Fruit - Scarce, available but only at 1 1/2 times the normal ration points

Processed Meats - Only substandard quality available

As far as the salad oils go, I'm glad I bought a new jar of canola oil last week. I think we have enough to get us through, but I hope we can purchase more next week.

Frozen fruit is already quite pricey on the rationing list, so 1 1/2 the regular points makes it a definite luxury for the week. Our family typically does not use much frozen fruit at all when not rationing, but that's because we eat lots of fresh fruit instead. Since we're limited to seasonal availability during the rationing project I have a feeling frozen fruit will be purchased more often as a nice break from canned and dried fruit during the winter months. Luckily we had just enough points to purchase some frozen strawberries this week as an extra treat.

Substandard processed meats showed up on our shopping list in the form of hot dogs and some pepperoni for homemade pizza night. In this instance I assumed that "substandard" meant off-brand. Again, not too bad of a scenario for our first week with the Randomizer.

For this week's shopping trip we used 63 of our 64 red rationing points and 185 of our 192 blue/green stamps. Red points were used on pepperoni, cheese, hot dogs and turkey and then buying containers of both shortening and margarine. Friday night will be a special night with 10 point pork chops! Most of the blue/green points were used on canned fruits and vegetables and those point-pricey frozen strawberries. Also, we purchased a modest-sized bottle of ketchup at a whopping 18 points - yowzer!

I also purchased our allotted 2 pounds of sugar (brown).

The dinner menu for this week is:
Saturday - homemade pizza (pepperoni and black olive)
Sunday - sloppy does (using non-rationed venison), mashed potatoes and cabbage salad
Monday - vegetable fried rice and egg-drop soup
Tuesday - baked hot dogs loaded with left-over mashed potatoes and cheese and (canned) green beans
Wednesday - vegetarian taco soup with sour cream and Fritos (yay for historically accurate Fritos!)
Thursday - waffles and (turkey) gravy (historical recipe) and (frozen) peas
Friday - pork chops, cabbage and fresh-baked bread

On Wednesday night we also reset the trip meters on our vehicles - this week will be the first full week to stay under our 193 miles-per-week ration. The Man of the House has been carpooling to work with a gentleman who prefers to be paid in soda (!); this saves us around 14 miles each day that he works. My round trip to work is only 2 1/2 miles, and I often walk to and from work two to three times a week, weather permitting. Unfortunately, the weather hasn't permitted much lately, so I'm itching for some nicer weather in the new year!

The next few weeks of shopping should be interesting because we are preparing for Sissy's birthday party, during which we will be feeding 17 people a noon-time meal. We've already developed a relatively ration-friendly menu and should be able to make all the long as the Randomizer doesn't throw us a kink!

--Rational Mama

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