About Me

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Indiana, United States
Updates on our homeschooling family with ten children, a handful of chickens, a couple horses, three bunnies, and six cats. Visit our website at PeacefulHome.net


Grocery Spending

Food Only

Oct 2010 - $231.39

Nov 2010 - $998.22

Dec 2010 - $340.29

Jan 2011 - $855.15

Feb 2011 - $203.17

Mar 2011 - $916.52

Monthly Average $590.79

Weekly Average $137.85
Our family's website, PeacefulHome.net, is in the process of changing hosting companies and is currently inactive. Our plan is to move this blog over once construction is complete. Please stay tuned for updates!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Thinking Outside the Van - Travel Food

Spending 10 days driving around makes feeding this crew a challenge. Most of the time our breakfasts were included with our hotel room. (Think Plague of Locusts when you picture 10 hungry Stumpfs coming into the continental breakfast room.)

We naturally wanted to avoid “the arches” as much as possible. Never mind the taste, it costs us around $35 to drive through these days. I think we stopped once on the way out and once on the way back. (Funny side story: The counter worker in the Elk Grove, OK, McDonalds thanked us for the experience after filling our large order.)

Since this army definitely marches on its stomach, providing three squares a day was an important part of my job on this trip. A smart phone and Google maps were my constant companion.

Several times we found a Walmart. After visiting their "facilities," walking around the store would provide a stretch break. We’d pick up meat and cheese in the deli and a couple boxes of crackers.

While Bryan would gas up the van, I’d make one baggie of crackers, meat, and cheese for each row of the van. (Think “Lunchables” on a much larger scale.) The crackers could get crumbly, but overall it was a clean, on-the-go meal for around $15 total. String cheese was the biggest hit since we don’t have that very often.

One day we called ahead to a Pizza Hut down the highway. We picked up two large pizzas for $20 (planning ahead with coupons would have lowered the total - drat!). Since most of my crew likes cheese pizza without sauce (crazy, I know!), this was also a clean meal.

Pizza in Rolla, MO

The biggest hit was the evening in New Mexico that we decided to get Dairy Queen Blizzards for dinner. Think about it - if you plan properly, you can get several food groups into a Blizzard! And I have a friend that says that chocolate is her favorite vegetable because cocoa is a bean. I can get behind that!


  1. I am keeping the home made "lunchable" idea for our next trip- genius. I keep a box of baggies in the car for eating on the go- but had not thought to create our own cracker sandwich bags! And the Blzzard-chocolate-as-a-food-group concept- I totally agree!!!!

  2. wow, I am impressed with the low mess, last time we had crackers in the van and we only have one they were everywhere. Somehow it must be in the training... :) Great tip. I found lunchable sandwich kits at a discount store for .59, and since we have one that is good, but for large crowds, probably not so good.Thanks for all your posts. Enjoy them. Miss you guys. Everytime I guess when we are going to Indiana I am wrong so not sure when we will be back.