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At least you have a reasonable excuse for eating your kids old food off the floor. If I find something the baby has dropped I'll pop it in my mouth just so I dont' have to pick it up and bring it all the way to the trash (if it's fresh..and not too dirty. LOL!). That's just laziness right there, not being frugal.

My husband and I are the same way in Casinos though. We spend about $20 and then we leave, usually after about 10 minutes.

I can TOTALLY relate. I lost ALL my weight after my son was born - and then some. Then at about one year he stopped eating all the baby food and started eating real food and I gained 15 pounds.

I can relate to not wanting to waste money or food, but some things belong in the trash!!

How about giving them smaller amounts to start with? Like 1/2 a rice cake each. If they finish it and ask for more, you can give them more. Less waste.

I can so relate to cleaning your plate, we grew up the same way, no money and so you ate everything on your plate b/c there wasn't that much. It's a habit I still struggle with today. However, a Weight Watchers leader told me something that really resonated with me and helps me with the "clean your plate" syndrome. She said "all food eventually goes to waste, it just doesn't have to go through you first". It's a bit gross if you think about it too hard but a good sentiment.

Good Luck!!

I hate hate hate to throw away food too. Even though I know there is no way in hell it can be boxed up and shipped to someone starving, it jsut feels so hideously American to toss food day in and day out that my child doesn't finish, won't eat, etc. I feel less guilty now giving it to the dogs, in their food bowls mixed up with the dry kibble. They love it. At least somehow, somewhere, it is being eaten by some sort of live creature, not a trash can.

Tertia, have you thought about starting up a compost heap or a worm bin? You can put in all sorts of breads and fruit and vegetables--really, anything that doesn't have meat or oils. I even put in coffee grounds, used tea bags and excess cat hair (left over from grooming sessions). It's a great way to cut down on what's going into landfills, it elminates your guilty feelings of waste, and it makes the best fertilizer in the world.

I find my dog to be very helpful in these situations! She's always happy to pick up after my kids.

I could have written your whole part on hating waste. Money and especially food.

I remember being at a buffet once and seeing a man fill his plate with food eating a few bites and putting the rest of it on the discard pile! I was horrified and disgusted.

I have learned to portion my food and I still clean my plate. I just can't help it so I learned to take less food. When we go out, I portion my meal when it comes and always have some to take home. I hate eating out on vacation because you can't take the rest home. It KILLS me to leave that food.

We were not poor, poor but my mom was growing up and we were taught not to waste. My mom says I am just like her mother in my waste thinking. My gma passed away when I was 5 so it just my be something that is in me.

It is also hard for me to watch my daugher leave food. I give her less and have her ask for more. I had to let go of the half eaten cookie, piece of bread thing. When she started with someting like crackers I counted them starting out with two. Then she had to ask for more and again gets two etc. Now that she is older (2 1/2) I can ask her how many does she want? Good for teaching counting/math skills.

If you have any tricks on how to stop this excessive need to not waste, let me know!

I also have a hard time throwing out things that are still useful. Such a shame to throw out something that is perfectly good but I just don't need it. Would give it away to not add to the garbage pile.

Not a gambling fan either.

I'm right there with you. I have really cut back on the amount of food that I put on my kid's plates, but they still seem to leave what I think is a lot to waste. I don't finish it, but while they're taking forever to eat, I'll usually have a second helping of whatever we're having, just so I'm not up doing dishes while they're all still sitting and having a meal together. We do give most leftovers to the dog (so the food gets eaten and we save some money on actual dog food).

We stopped at a fast food place yesterday for lunch. My kids ate most of their food, but they both got milk and my son drank half of his and my daughter took 2 drinks and said she was done. I normally would take the milks home, but I was dropping them off at daycare and then heading to work. And I was stuffed (I ate and drank all of my lunch...), so I couldn't finish two containers of milk. See, I'm still justifying throwing it away!

So, you're not alone. Both my parents also grew up very poor. And my father also quit school after 8th grade and made a very, very good living with his own business. They're still very frugal to this day. My mother reuses plastic bags until they have holes in them, reuses everything that can be used. My father has retired and goes to the "senior center" every day to play cards with his buddies. The grocery store across the street always brings over the day old (read: stale) breads, and my father always brings home what's left after everyone else picks through it. I can't even begin to tell you how many stale hamburger buns I've eaten over the last few years. But, it makes him feel good to know that he didn't let the bread waste, and I guess I feel good because someone else cooked the burger that I'm eating on the stale bun!

Ahh, i love you Tertia!

Waste makes me ill. My bad habit is that I view with distaste PEOPLE who waste! Women who throw away money shopping, people who order too much food, folks who toss out perfectly good clothing, furniture, etc into the dump. I HATE people like that!

On the food front, fortunately I can give all our unsalvegable leftovers to the pigs or the chickens or compost it.


Waste drives me nuts, but I learned that we can teach the kids not to waste. I still toss their left over food because I can't stand to eat just to eat...

OK Think about the snotty part and that SHOULD help you to give it up. LOL I understand you completely but you NEED TO STOP now girl it is an obsession. LOL (OK it's not so funny to you)

Strength to you.

Laurie - newly addicted reader of your blog.

Our dog is the food vacuum in the house.

That was so funny, but only because I can relate. My father would make us sit for hours until we finished our food. The milk would be warm, the food disgustingly cold or on the verge of rotting. We found ways of getting rid of it, in our socks, on much needed trips to the bathroom, etc...

I found myself becoming my father in that regard and then, like you I knew I could not repeat the hellfire he inflicted on me, so I stopped. I am free and soon you will be too!

There is always hope ;)

I am the Queen of Miserness. My grandmother used to wash out ziploc baggies and reuse paper napkins, and now I understand why - how scary is that?

Kudos to your parents for doing such a great job with you and your sibs...what a terrific story, even if you are a bit on the "frugal" side (and there's nothing wrong with that!).

Loved reading about your parents and their romance. So sweet!

You should write more about their histories, it sounds so interesting.

I am guilty of eating Melody's leftovers too. Sometimes it is gross. One way of thinking about it that helps me is this: It's a waste either way. Either it's a waste in the trashcan, or it's a waste in my belly. If I am not hungry and I don't need the calories, than it's a waste for me to eat it. That helps me. Also, sometimes I put things in a baggie for later, like srambled egg, toast, or fruit that she has not eaten. She doesn't realize it's not perfectly fresh the next day and often eats the leftovers for me!

Exactly the reason we had to trade the maltese for a german shepard - to eat the food the kids waste!

i loooooooove rice cakes. what i usually do with uneaten food is give it to the animals, or, throw it into the garden. that way it isn't totally wasted :)

Oh, I can so relate. Hubby *regularly* leaves about 20 peas in the pot (he does the cooking and dishing out of food), which I don't notice until I go to do the dishes. By then, the peas (or whatever is left over) are pretty grotty - they could have gone into a container and be used for leftovers the next day. Or a stew. Or mushed with mashed potatoes or something.

I HATE wasted food. I don't feel the need to eat it myself, right then and there, but it kills me to throw it out (we compost, but STILL!).

Oh and, if you don't mind my asking, you've mentioned that your Dad's Jewish a few times. You've also mentioned that religion is not something that's a big deal in your family. Just curious - does your Dad relate to being Jewish at all (observe any holidays, etc.)? Has any of that passed down to you and your sibs?

I realize the story was about waste BUT I loved reading about your parents. I too told my mom when I was 15 that I was going to marry my husband. We got married a month after I turned 19 and he was 17 (although we didn't have a baby on the way). We've been happily married for 12 years, we always get the raised eyebrow when people find out how young we were so I love to hear about other people's successful young marriages.

I grew up hearing my Polish-American grandma's "clean plate club" hogwash. And what was on the plate was, in fact, hogwash! Or almost, anyway—blood soup, pig's feet, sausage, cabbage. Blech!

Then I met my husband's family and learned about the Filipino tradition of "leaving some for the spirits." Leave the snotty rice cakes for your ghostly ancestors, won't you? The poor dears haven't eaten in decades.

Very strange - you are crazy about germs but you will eat an old half eaten snotty rice cake from the floor?

At least you have now improved your immune system!

I always forget that Afrikaans is basically the same language as Dutch. I can read and speak Dutch, so I guess I can read and speak Afrikaans. Cool! Maybe I'll put that on my resume!

I can so relate to your problem. My Jood father and my Jood mother had similar backgrounds to your family. My father came from a very wealthy family, my mother was dirt poor. They grew up during the depression and my mother was off the wall cheap, even though our family was exceedingly wealthy and my mother earned more than 50% of the takehome pay packet. But she was NUTS on waste. The woman washed plastic bags and reused them. FREE ones from the grocery store! She saved tinfoil pie ces to be used again. Food was NEVER to be wasted. She would cut mold off stuff and feed it to us.

Me, not so much. I'm cheap, and yes I've been known to eat off my kid's plates, but I draw the line at stuffing a used rice cake into my gob. Especially one with slime.

I an not sure therapy is the answer, but I'd guess writing down every time you did it would sufficiently gross you out enough to stop cold turkey. I mean, snot covered food. No... just no!

Ask the dogs to help with the food issues, they are usually quite amenable to that!!


Woh we have our parents in common it seems. Here a poor mom from a very unsafe family married to a dyslectic selfmade miljonaire ! and still very happy and in love after 35 years.
I however throw everything away remotely after the sell bydate I just can't get over the mouldy bread we couldn't throw away when I was a kid...

However I heard an older mum say: 'Moeders worden dik van 't sund' and that is so true with me always eating there leftovers..

Oh oh oh pick me! Pick me! This one is so easy! Feed the children's and Marko's discarded unwanted to the dogs. Except chocolate or potatoes (bad for dogs). Send all discarded chocolate to me. There! All is well.

well fuck me. i see have been beaten to the punch. Very slow.

I promise - the snotty nose stops at somepoint. I have a 2.5 year-old and, I swear, it seemed like the boogers would never end with him! But finally, like in the last three months, the perpetual boogers have stopped. Good luck Teria!

Oooops, I meant Tertia, not Teria!

"My father’s family were German Jews, my mother’s family were Dutch Catholics. No bloody wonder I drink."

This has to be the best line I have read in a blog, ever. And a great line to start a new book ;)

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