I didn’t take very many food pictures last week – but I think we all know I have valid and crazy excuses. Who has time to take food pictures when there are guests to visit with and guys next-door in Hazmat Suits to stare at for an entire day?!
I wish though. I wish I would have had more time to take pictures – simply because this week’s food was all very pretty. I was able to get my hands on many great deals because of price-matching this week! (I didn’t even get a picture of my grocery run – boo!) Lots of fruits and veggies always translates to pretty plates and tables because of all the variety of natural colors.
I did manage to get this picture of our (strange but delicious) lunch on Thursday. I never serve French fries with stir-fry – but I wanted to pack in a lot of veggies, and I also needed a shower. How are the two related? They aren’t – except that I prefer to make homemade French fries before a shower (not after) because the process always makes my hair smell a little like grease. I’ve learned to hold off on a shower until after I make French fries (or bacon).
Sir-Fry + French Fries = weird, but delicious.
Our stir-fry included carrots, broccoli, asparagus, sweet peppers, and the last of the turkey I made last week. It was soooo good! Of course, homemade fries are the bomb. And the blueberries? Yum. I picked up six pints this week since the price-match was so good.
I also picked up 4 bunches of broccoli for 99¢ each, 3 bags of clementines for $2.49/3 pounds, and 4 bags of gala apples @ $2.50 each. Great stuff!
Our Valentine’s Day Chicken Dinner turned out a little bit frantic, but still lots of fun. I knew it was a terrible Sunday-after-church meal since it couldn’t be made ahead of time. We got home from church just a little before 12:30 had to be finished by 1:30 so some of the boys could be out the door again. So we worked together and made a big mess to get it on the table in time.
As planned, we started with salad and rolls…
Then we served up the fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, peas, and frosted brownies. Asa and one of his college buddies joined us. Don’t miss the fact that just before I could snap a picture, Asa formed his hands into a heart and said, “Happy Valentine’s Day!” Pray for him as he is obviously very shy and withdrawn.
Now I want to spend a few minutes talking about Valley Food Storage. See this Strawberry Oatmeal? It came from them. As did a bunch of other fun pouches of convenience foods. Yummo on the Strawberry Oatmeal!!
Several weeks ago, Valley Food Storage asked if they could send our family a 1-month Food Supply Kit to review. We like food, so I was interested. I looked over the specifics:
- 85 Servings of delicious food
- Resealable, thick, mylar packaging
- 25 Year shelf life
- Nitrogen flushed packaging
- Convenient “just add water” meals.
- No MSG’s
- Non GMO
- No fillers or drink mix
- All natural ingredients
Feeling pretty good about these specs, I said yes to the review opportunity. Here’s what we got:
Now obviously, this was not a 1-month food supply for our entire family. (The site states that it is enough for one person for one month.) Here’s what we have enjoyed and appreciated about these foods from Valley Food Storage:
- While not every ingredient in these pouches is top-notch – for “convenience foods” they aren’t too bad. (No hydrogenated oils, no HFCS)
- The instructions for preparing these are super simple, so I turned every single one of them over to our boys to make. It was GREAT to have these pouches on hand for busy nights when I didn’t have time to cook. The boys would pick one (or three) and prepare it for our meal.
- Some of the pouches contained breakfast cereals. While they are more sugary that I would make myself, they were a fun and easy breakfast for the kids. This has been a great time saver!
- I didn’t have to worry about finding freezer space for these. They store just fine on the shelf.
Some draw backs:
- My athletic teenage sons (and their meat-loving mother) missed the meat that didn’t come in these. It makes sense, though, that these would be meatless – and we could have used them as side dishes instead of main dishes.
- We didn’t love the taste of all of these. Some were so-so, some were never again, but most were pretty good – especially the breakfast cereals. (We’re spoiled by frequent great-tasting meals since we cook most of our food homemade.)
- While the ingredients in these weren’t what I consider terrible, I didn’t consider them to be overly nourishing either. We prefer nutrient-packed food.
Would I buy these for my family?
I tell you what. This is a tricky one. I rarely buy convenience foods for my family – but they are nice to have around for the occasional time I have nothing homemade in the freezer or fridge to work with. These pouches are better for us than frozen pizzas, so there’s that. The price is reasonable for prepared food, and is cheaper than ordering take-out.
But I don’t know. Overall, these kinds of food aren’t where I like to spend my grocery money. Of all of them, I would find the breakfast foods most helpful – but I can make them myself for much less.
So while I’m grateful I was sent a box of food to review, I’m guessing that is where it will end for me. You can check into it though and see if you think Valley Food Storage is a good match for your family. During different seasons in life, we all have different needs for extra convenience in the kitchen. And like I said, at least these are “better than” when compared to frozen pizza and boxed chicken nuggets.
On that note, I will sign off and enjoy some down time catching up on rest after last week. Hope you had a fun Valentine’s Day!