Live Below The Line Year 2: Day 1

I have signed up again for Live Below The Line from 27 April to 1 May, hoping to raise funds for ChildHope. I woke up extra early feeling excited to start Year 2 of this journey for the same reasons I had last year.



I’ve had better understanding of the challenge so I was able to prep in advance for this year’s feat. As mentioned previously, the shop list had to be properly thought through due to inflation and unavailability of products (eg I couldn’t find a 69p pack of wholemeal couscous that worked so well last year). It made me think about those who are less fortunate to access convenient, cheap, and healthy produce. How can they ever survive?

Here’s a list of stuff I bought online (but don’t mind the other bits, didn’t mean to put up my dirty laundry here, har har). Admittedly, it’s not particularly a list I’d get myself… but neither is this a representation of how “the other half live”. Because believe it or not, most of them have it worse.

So far, I’ve managed a total of £3.96. I’m setting aside 20-30p for oil and seasoning, which means I still have roughly 80p to play with. I intend to visit my local fruit and veg grocer to use this up.

Anyway. I got into Victoria train station only to find the underground station shut, which meant I had to walk from there to Covent Garden.

I wasn’t particularly hungry yet but a 30-minute walk can surely help work up an appetite.

There is consolation in the beauty of London on sunny mornings.

For breakfast, I had a banana (12p), two digestive biscuits (There are 28 biccies in a pack, so I can technically have 5 a day, cashing up to 6p per day), and a mug of 50p-a-jar coffee (UGH).

The night before, I cooked a third of the penne (10p) with a tin of sardines in sunflower oil (40p). This was actually good for 2-3 servings which makes it roughly 25p per serving (I also used 1/5 of my onion plus seasoning). I remember being so careful to not waste anything while chopping the onion – I almost threw the off-cuts as usual until I realised, hey I can still use that part!

This is magic at 2p per cube. Essentially chicken stock cube with a little bit of oomph. Do not ask me about its sodium content. Por favor.

The pasta was actually pretty tasty and I couldn’t wait to show my curious colleagues what I was having for lunch. However, when the clock struck noon I realised I left my lunch box at home. Talk about bad luck. 
@#$%^&!!!
Surprisingly, I wasn’t too hungry and managed to survive the day munching on the rest of my digestives and another pot of coffee. I ate 2 servings of my pasta for dinner and left some for Day 2 lunch. 

That wraps up Day 1 of the Live Below The Line challenge.

Overall spend: roughly 70p 

Overall belly factor: Surprisingly full. 
Overall feeling: My mind frame was totally in the zone so I knew it wasn’t going to be a gastronomic five days. As I’ve done it last year, I am happy that people have been more accepting/supportive than critical. It’s not about me, my diet, nor losing weight (GOOD GRIEF I can’t afford to lose any more), but about fighting poverty and making the privileged minority understand a bit more about how the underprivileged majority live.

For more information about the campaign please visit the Live Below the Line website. Please visit the Child Hope website too, for more information about the charity I’m raising funds for! You can help either by joining or by sponsoring me here.

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