Family fed for under $100
Julie Craig has proven it’s possible to feed a family in suburban Auckland on less than $100 per week.
The Onehunga resident has developed her own art of making and growing a majority of products used to feed, clean and wash a family of four.
But Craig isn’t interested in keeping secrets and believes people have become too detached from their food. She now wants to impart her knowledge on to families living in Auckland on a tight budget.
With her husband Derek, she’s started the Oak and Thistle, a company which will run workshops and consulting on sustainable living.
Originally she was inspired to live this way when creativity became essential with a young family on a low income.
‘‘We made our own kids’ presents and they grew up like that and they didn’t really mind. It was only when they compared themselves to other children or people that they asked ‘why don’t I have the Nerf gun?’,’’ she says.
Born in Melbourne, Craig has taken many of her recipes and ingredients from medieval, Victorian and peacetime era cooking - periods of history when people were the best at being frugal.
‘‘It really is just about making every mouthful count … and making sure if you buy ingredients that they’re really good quality ingredients and you use every single bit of it,’’ she says.
‘‘What I’ve done is I’ve gone through the whole [idea of] being filled up and having your tummy filled, to now being fed where you have a feeling of being full but your body doesn’t crave food all the time because you’re meeting its needs nutritionally…..so therefore you have less because you don’t need as much because your body is not hungry.’’
But there’s more to Craig’s method than just being frugal and healthy. It all goes back to her childhood when she would see the way her grandmother would express love by making her own household essentials.
‘‘As a child it was peaceful and lovely…it was the feeling that I had and I wanted my children to have that feeling.’’
Craig has more workshops planned this year with the next being gluten-free sausage making on September 17.
Visit oakandthistle.co.nz for more information.
Auckland mother-of-two Julie Craig has learned to feed a family for less than $100 per week.