£1 a day

We're taking the challenge of living below the extreme poverty line, spending just £1 a day, to raise money for charity, but also to experience it and enhance our compassion. People all over the world have less than £1 a day to live on, which has to provide food, shelter and utilities. We have so much provided for us, but we are going to eat for just £1 a day. The challenge doesn't begin until May 2012, but you can read about last years experience here.

Breakfast

Sunday, 13 May 2012

As I mentioned, I made myself a massive amount of juice this morning, and it was so so good!

The hardest thing about live below the line is how uniform everything tastes. We actually finished with about 1/2 a chicken left over (we were both being so cautious at the beginning of the week) and three eggs. The things is, you can't buy 1/2 a box of eggs, and we got the chicken at a really low price, so less wouldn't have been cheaper.

There really was just no way we could budget in fruit. We barely had any vegetables as it was.

I think it's the lack of carbohydrates that was making me feel a little light headed because with in a few minutes of drinking my juice my mood was visibly brighter and I was convinced I was having a mild 'caffeine buzz' (despite no caffeine) and my head was clearing.

It's horrible to think that for some people this isn't just an unpleasant week, but a lifestyle.

How long can the body cope on that kind of diet, without long term damaging effects? Sure, I felt a little foggy and light headed, but if this was my long term diet, would I be causing serious damage?
Is there a link between poverty and learning disabilities?
Is that why children from poorer areas achieve less?

Live below the line has once again made me so thankful for things like breakfast cake, but more importantly for the privilege of being able to feed my children, good nourishing foods, make the best choices for their educations and give them opportunities that millions of people around the globe will never have.

It makes me thank God for where I was born, and when I was born.

Bored

Saturday, 12 May 2012

I literally can't be bothered to eat today.

 I guess it's because the kids are ill, so we haven't been out much this week, and I've been a bit run down too. I'm not expending many calories, and because I know the food I can have isn't very interesting I'm not even hungry anymore. Just goes to show how much excess I eat normally under the pretense of hunger, when it's really just boredom - wanting a new flavour in my mouth.

 Sometimes I think I'm hungry, when I'm cutting up an orange for the children or slicing pineapple for their juice, but when faced with eating more chicken I quickly decide I'm not. All I want is fresh fruit, and if I can't have it, then I'm not hungry. I'm behaving like a toddler.

 Seriously, the first thing I'm having tomorrow morning is about a litre of fresh juice. I'm not kidding either. I have a pineapple, 6 oranges, a bunch of carrots and some beetroot all waiting on my kitchen side.

Saving Seeds

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Waste has become much more important to me in the last 48 hours (much as it did last year during our live below the line experience).

It's so difficult to watch your children leave food on a plate and know that, although it would easily double me and Matts dinner tonight, realistically it's going in the bin. I guess that's one thing the poor don't have to deal with, because their children would be starving too.

Not that I'm saying I'd rather my children were starving, just that it's hard to let that food go to waste.

My mum used to say 'there's children starving in Africa' when I didn't eat my dinner as a kid. I knew full well the food wouldn't magically get to them whether or not I ate it, but being on the hungry end of that equation really does make me resent the waste a whole lot more.

In the interest of not wasting this weeks vegetable box (I forgot to cancel my standing order) I've been preserving it, when it suddenly hit me, that I could also save the seeds.

Matt and I had a conversation earlier about how much easier live below the line would be if our garden was a bit more established (is that cheating?) and whether we should include costs like seeds. That's when I realised I have a steady supply of healthy, organic, seeds - regularly going into my compost bin!

It probably wouldn't have occurred to me if I hadn't seen Food Inc and been so shocked by the farmers loss of rights to save seeds for next years planting. It's such a normal part of traditional food production, to save your best seeds and replant.

It's horrifying to think that so many farmers are being kept in debt, and that poverty and food 'shortages' continue because large companies can find legal ways to wipe out traditional farming.

You can do something about it. Educate yourself and get involved in the campaign against Monsanto

The Will to Cook

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Is it terrible that I've lost the will to cook and it's only day one?

The children aren't doing live below the line (it is something we'd like to do with them in the future, but when they are older and can understand why) and already I realised I've become lazy about cooking for them.

Breakfast went well, but then their lunch had turned out to be just cheese, dates, pears and cashew nuts; not that they are complaining. This kind of snack food is Will's favourite meal.

I don't want to start a trend though. Just because I'm not eating it myself doesn't mean I can't still create delicious and nutritious meals for my children.

The curse of live below the line

Monday, 7 May 2012

I'm sick again.

What is it about live below the line that does this to me? Fortunately it seems to be a nasty cold virus, rather than chicken pox this time so we are going to go ahead with the challenge.

I spent most of our budget on a chicken this year, so we'll be drinking plenty of chicken broth which should help aid recovery.

On the plus side, both kids appear to be coming down with said virus as well, so we should get a nice cuddly day on the sofa, which won't be too strenuous.

Second Attempt

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Thanks for all who sponsored us for our Live below the Line attempt back in March. Obviously we can't really count living below the line because of illness, so to honour your sponsorship we are going to have another attempt... starting monday!

We will once more be living below the line and will keep you up to date here. In the meantime here's the trailer:

Why Live Below the Line

Monday, 26 March 2012

Live below the line is close to my heart because we plan to adopt, not just any orphan, but one of the world's poorest.

Actually, that's not strictly true. We plan to adopt from the 75% of the worlds population who we consider to be the world's poorest, but who are statistically much more average than we have ever been.

Maybe this video will explain it better than I can, but live below the line reminds me that somewhere, out in the vast world that I have no comprehension of, one or more of our children is currently living on less than this.


video