My kids were able to have a fun (and inexpensive) experience testing out another culture. And the best part is, we didn't have to leave our own neighborhood!
Recession Mama Michele Ashamalla: Two of my kids were off school today and we were out doing some errands. On a whim, we stopped into a small Asian market we had passed many times. We had a ball wandering the aisles seeing some foods that we recognized, but a lot we didn't. We decided to choose foods for lunch -- and I was completely floored.
My son, who is not the most adventurous of eaters, wanted a gigantic bag of dried anchovies. He ended up selecting udon (noodles) with anchovies after I promised that if he liked it, I would come back and get more anchovies (!). My daughter chose shrimp shumai (dumplings), and I chose rice noodles with mushrooms. We also got some roasted seaweed for them to snack on and a mango drink for them to share. Although we love it, we skipped the mochi (pulverized sticky rice) ice cream since we still have a bunch of holiday sweets around.
Unbelievably, the entire experiment was a total success. They liked everything they chose, and have already planned what they would choose on our next trip. Total bill = $12.00 with almost enough leftovers for dinner, or definitely enough for their few school lunches. Watching my kids trying and liking new foods = priceless.
A former state deputy attorney general and current stay-at-home mom, Recession Mama Michele Ashamalla has three kids and ten years of experience stretching one salary to cover the necessities and more. She's all about saving money whenever you can, so you have it to spend on whatever you want!