Food prices soar in Connecticut

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I dragged my body to the grocery store at 7 a.m. today because the cats needed food (completely out). Otherwise, I would have stayed home and rested. I also promised my 14 year old son a real meal tonight as he was leaving for school. He had eggs for dinner last night, poor kid (and eggs for breakfast). I wanted him to look forward to a nice dinner for once (I am making two big dishes of lasagna).

I am having a rough week. I overdid it on Monday and am paying the price now. But that is not the topic of this post. What I faced at the grocery store is the topic of this post.

After being offered hamburger that was priced at $5.49 a pound, I almost started crying. I couldn’t even afford the food that was on my list. I had to postpone paying a bill to buy food today. And then to be faced with ground beef priced over $5 a pound was just too much.

I passed on that expensive ground beef (we don’t eat much meat anymore — can’t afford it), bought the other items on my short list (6 items, with four cans of one item). My bill at the register was $70. And I hadn’t purchased the hamburger meat and eggs that I still needed.

So off to the next store, a little country market that is on my way home. I found ground round for $3.29 a pound and the eggs that I wanted. That bill was about $17. I almost started crying again on the drive back home.

I know a big part of it is that I have been in a lot of pain this week (it started last week with horrible edema in my legs, ankles and feet — it is better this week). Tylenol hasn’t been helping at all and I had a reaction last time I took ibuprofen. I just wanted to be home today to rest and let my body relax and hopefully feel better. I am also on the edge of tears because I do not think I have the energy to plant my vegetable garden this summer which is supposed to help offset food costs. Well, I will get a few things in, no doubt, but nothing like last year.

Did I mention that I paid $4.20 a gallon for gasoline yesterday? I couldn’t afford that, either, but I must drive to school and pick up my kids and drive to the grocery store.

I want to know what in the world is going on in Connecticut. Prices for everything just keep going up and up while our economy is ranked at #50 in the country. Pay is not going up. An employee at the grocery store confessed to me that he got a whopping 2% raise this year. So while ground beef prices have gone up 50-75%, pay goes up 2%? I’m not a math whiz, but even I can see something bad is going to happen eventually.

Sorry for this bummer post, but something is rotten in Denmark, and it is hurting my family terribly. Oh well, back to being a starving student (I just get mad when my kids don’t have enough to eat — that really frustrates me).

Lest you wonder why I keep pets when I can’t really afford to feed my family: we have over 4 acres of land here, land that is typically populated with all kinds of mammals that are covered with fleas, mites and ticks that carry Lyme disease and other vector-borne diseases. I suffer from chronic Lyme disease, a disease that has destroyed my health and seriously affected two of my other children. Since increasing my number of cats, we have hardly seen any deer ticks on anyone, even the animals. The first summer that these guys hunted there were dead little rodent bodies all over the place (white-footed mice carry the disease itself). Apparently, they have the population under control. Yes, we are still at risk, and yes, most of the ticks in Connecticut, upwards of 70% of them, carry diseases dangerous to humans. Yet, I am doing what I can for only a few dollars a month. And it is natural pest control; no chemicals, poisons, or pesticides. That is why I keep the cats (well, and we love them and they love us back).

Thanks for letting me rant a little bit (in a self-pitying kind of way). Happy rainy Wednesday!

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