In the greenhouse typing this just after lunch...the sun is pale in the sky and a keen breeze blows through the many broken panes of glass...but it is a greenhouse...ours remains for its fifth year resolutely in storage!
No plants in here yet, but our old kitchen table has found a new home and there is a little mobile coverage up here which is more than in the actual cottage...so maybe this will become my office of choice...today I have hauled in an old folding chair, some paperwork and lunch.
As you can see I am not alone...
I have been budgeting for our food, and not just in monetary terms...keen to try and live off wartime rations at least for a while I've been working on the average amounts allowed of various foods rather than keep upping and downing amounts which previously I found impossible to find out about. Points are another sticky issue which I need to address. I'm leaning towards set amounts for all basic rationed foods then a monetary amount for whatever else we need. Different products are available now and I'm not sure I want to give them up, but just limit what we scoff and use of everything!
Who I and youngest daughter work for have come up trumps by lending us a compact cooker that they used at the home a few years ago while the kitchen was being re-done. Our cooker isn't now arriving until the beginning of June, and much as the food cooked on top the woodburner has tasted delicious, we were very restricted as to what we (well I) could prepare. Sunday roast was started at ten in the morning and served at six thirty in the evening! Best brisket I've ever done though!!
So for any of you that may be interested here are the amounts averaged out over the duration of WW2 of what weekly rations our family of four adults would have been allowed and what we're hoping to adhere to...
Meat...including sausages and poultry...4lb
Bacon or ham...1 1/2lb
Milk...12 pints fresh
Milk...1 pint dried
Jam or syrup...12oz
Now I know that meat was by monetary value and poultry and sausages weren't included, but very rarely available...so just for simplicity the above is the amount we're allowing ourselves.
At the moment we do not have chickens, though maybe that will change, however I'm not about to buy powdered eggs...one dozen it is!
The main problem I can foresee is milk...we use a lot of it, both I and hubby came from dairy farming families...youngest's partner is the biggest milk guzzler though!
Having no wish to whiff worse than stirred silage effluent, soap rations could be fun...these were coupon based...at the moment we're using packet laundry powder, but will have to see about whether to continue this or make our own again...I do make soap and have plenty of making supplies already. Think we'll worry about the food items first...but what monetary value should the rest of our shopping be at? Four hungry adults, two taking packed lunches, one taking breakfast as well...and let's not forget the meat eating dog...who would really rather not be on rations of any kind! I'm not going to impose anything on her...she does eat a raw food diet rather than commercial pet food, so things like offal, bone, skin and meat, plus fish and scraps get scaffled up by her...eve carrot peelings!
So excluding Heidi grub, and the rationed items, at a guess things such as fruit, veg, tinned goods, flour, yeast, dried fruits, nuts, and cereals could realistically add £30 to the bill weekly? This I will monitor and obviously get as low as possible without wanting to kill someone!
One thing that strikes me at first glance is the amount of sugar and fat allowed even on rations, but wait...just about everything was cooked from scratch...no added sugar drinks or sauces or anything really. So we'll see how we go! And with the help of albeit a little cooker I'm quite sure we shan't starve...for a while anyway.