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WIS, WWA | all new to me!

What I Spent

This is my first time having an actual-factual job since…1998. So I am doing some serious adjusting!

cat walking by door.

I spent:

  • $32 at Trader Joe’s
  • $6 at Safeway
  • $32 at Aldi

And that makes $70 even.

What We Ate


I worked my overnight shift the night before, so I was pretty tired at dinnertime. This is when I picked up that free rotisserie chicken, which I ate with some kale salad I’d made previously (mentioned in this week’s Five Frugal Things!).

kale and chicken salad.


Zoe extended her shift until close at work, so it was just me here for dinner. I made a salad with sauteed shrimp as the protein.

green salad with shrimp.


I ate a late lunch after a morning spent at the hospital (more orientation. I am SO oriented now.) and I wasn’t hungry at dinnertime.

Zoe was, though, and she ate pizzas made on the mini naan leftover from last week’s tikka masala.

mini naan pizza.


Zoe was at work, so after I came home from a 7 am – 7:30 pm shift, I sauteed a sliced red pepper and a tilapia fillet, and ate some cheese ravioli on the side before I showered and went to bed.

I am discovering that there’s really not a whole lot of time to do anything after a 12-hour shift, especially if it’s followed immediately by another one!


I worked a second 12-hour shift that day. I did such a good job of packing healthy lunches for my back-to-back shifts:

packed lunch in glass container.

And on Tuesday night when I came home, I did a good job of eating protein and veggies too.

Buuuuuuut by the time I got home on Wednesday, I was all out of energy to make very nutritious choices.

tired Kristen.

I really am so happy at my job even if the shifts are making me pretty tired. 🙂

So my tired self ate a bowl of ravioli with tomato sauce, and chased it with two cinnamon rolls. Ha. No produce in sight.

Overnight Cinnamon Rolls Story Poster Image

I think what I have learned from my first week is that I should prep both lunch AND dinner before a string of shifts.

prepped lunch in a fridge.

My prepped lunch, waiting to go into the lunch bag

But I’m giving myself an A grade for how I navigated the first 70 hours, and I know I’ll get better at this the more I do it. 🙂


I made some panko-breaded chicken fingers, which we ate on green salads.


Zoe’s gonna be at a birthday party, so I’m only feeding me! I’ll poke through my fridge and see what needs to be used up. I have a lot of ripe avocados so maybe some kind of tostada, spread with mashed avocado on the shell?

What did you have for dinner this week?

P.S. On Monday, my friend Katy from The Nonconsumer Advocate agreed to do a Meet a Reader post! 🙂

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Suellen Roley

Wednesday 3rd of July 2024

Now I finally know what the metal container with latches that I found on top of a garbage can at Market of Choice (an upscale supermarket where I worked at the time) is called!! And I'm needing to change up what I eat (less gluten), so it will be great to pack a little salad in.


Wednesday 3rd of July 2024

Ohhhh, that would be a very nice find!

Kim from Philadelphia

Saturday 29th of June 2024

Also slow cooked bbq pork shoulder/ pork loin. Shred and freeze half. So many options with this as well

Kim from Philadelphia

Saturday 29th of June 2024

Another idea is to make a big batch of a veggie heavy pasta salad. Great as an entree, then as lunch or a side with a protein

Kim from Philadelphia

Saturday 29th of June 2024

Perhaps some crock pot meals? An easy one is boneless chicken breasts, salsa, black beans, corn and fresh cilantro It can be served in tacos, over rice, or solo with a side salad.

Blue Gate Farmgirl

Saturday 29th of June 2024

Kristen, you did well for your first huge work week! I find Quinoa is my secret weapon in keeping me full for the big workdays. I use it as a base for marinated salad topper, I make high protein granola bars (Oats, nuts, quinoa and a bit of dark chocolate), greek yogurt w/fresh fruit - this week is blueberries, pie cherries, strawberries. I always have baggies of nuts and home dried fruits and leathers in my backpack and extra veggie sticks in my lunch cooler. I start my work day with a peanut butter & honey sandwich and coffee for the commute (65 miles). Thankfully I have a commute buddy and he insists on driving. We have been working Fri, Sat, Sun off, Mondays or Sat, Sun & Mondays for 2 years. We work in the Trauma ICU unit and Rapid Response team 1 week a month. The days fly by and are never boring. WIS; $80 @ Costco, $27 @ Restaurant Supply, $43 @ Grocery Outlet* coupons edition 1 coupon $5 off $25 & $5 off $15 Sun - Family dinner for 17 - BBQ turkey legs, chicken legs, marinated veggie salad, slab GF cheesecake w/homemade cherry pie filling. Sun tea & iced coffees M - chicken fried elk steak, bake potato, sauteed broccoli and cauliflower T - Asian cabbage salad w/leftover chicken fried steak, sweet cherries from the garden for dessert W - stir fry w/rest of Chicken fried steak, broccoli, cabbage, onions, kale, cauliflower, carrots, broccoli & red peppers everything from the garden except red peppers. Th - grilled steelhead, green salad, blueberry/strawberry muffins for dessert F - Chicken salad sammies, veggie sticks & ranch, cookies first concert in the park (free) for the summer season. Sat - appetizer party at work - taking hummus w/veggies, smoked salmon & khol rabi w/fruit tea concentrates over shaved ice.


Saturday 29th of June 2024

Oh, that is a good idea to incorporate quinoa. Noted!

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