Figure it up; if you spend $5 per day for 5 days, you are spending $25 per week for lunches. This amounts up to $100 a month! When you put your leftovers in the refrigerator, or you don't really have enough leftovers for a full meal, don't throw them out, use them for lunch.
For one dollar at the Dollar Store or Famly Dollar or Walmart, you can purchase a three piece plastic place setting that comes with a plastic glass that has a top on it. Carry this for lunch. You already bought the food at the grocery, use it.
REMEMBER: machine soft drinks add up too. If you buy sodas at the grocery store, grab one or two and put it in your lunch tote. Don't forget to grab the snack food you already bought also. Chips can fit in a baggie and an English muffin can too. Happy breakfast, snacks, and lunches!
By Jane from Paducah, KY
We've packed my husband's lunches for over 30 years. Several of the people he eats with (and who always buy out), have remarked about how good his lunches always look. Luckily, I was able to go home for lunch most of the time I worked. We never figured what we saved, we just kept adding to our savings little-by-little. That account has gotten us out of so many predicaments: furnace replacements, a new washer and dryer, tires for our vehicles, lawnmowers, medical bills, occassional vacations, college funds, etc. It's really amazing how fast it adds up.
Lunches at work are more about socialization than food, for the most part, so it matters less what's in front of you than enjoying a few minutes of relaxation before you get "back to the grind."
If I could recover all the money I saved by brown-bagging it, I could almost retire today, lol!
I'd like to add that it takes will power to drive through a fast food line and not get the unhealthy choices. I think if I've had a stressful morning at work, I will be tempted by those cheap McDonald's apple pies and the yummy fries. If I have packed my own lunch. I'm kind of like a good mom sending my darling off to school. I've put in the nutritious apple and raw almonds for snacks as well as a healthy lunch.
Bringing your own lunch is definitely the way to go. I'm vegan, so finding take away food that is nutritious with no animal products is next to impossible. On the weekends I have fun trying out new recipes and then bring my food to work. I know that I'm sticking to my eating plan and there are no nasty preservatives or excess fat salt or sugar in my food. And invariably someone coming into the lunch room always remarks at how delicious my lunch looks and smells.
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