Chocolate_chips_compressedOur rules state that we get to eat, consume, use everything that was in the house at the beginning of the year. We are now two months into our experiment and many of these leftovers are now depleted. For the first time in our married life, we don't have five or more boxes of cereal in the pantry. We have none. We are sugar free or sugar deprived, depending on the way you look at it. (In a cruel turn of fate, we learned with great joy that there was a sugar beet processing plant in Moses Lake, only to find out that it closed in 2002. We're eating a lot honey from Tate's Honey, and experimenting with Palm Sugar from Thailand.) We are using homemade butter instead of cooking oil. (There has got to be some Washington grown and processed canola oil out there - we just haven't found it yet. Can anyone help us on that?) Bananas are a faint memory. We are out of computer paper, and have resorted to printing on the back of the kids coloring pages. Paper towels and napkins are going fast.

One glimmer of abundance at the beginning of the year was an almost full, five pound bag of Toll House chocolate chips.

Up until yesterday I viewed this bag as a little refuge of indulgence. I would grab a handful here and there throughout the week. It was such a huge bag that I chose to focus on the positive. I would say to myself, "I can't believe there are still so many chips left." It was my little fantasy of the never ending bag of chocolate. Yesterday Nancy burst my fantasy bubble when she discovered the almost empyt bag of chips. Busted! I now know the shame and social alienation of the villager, from years gone by, who was caught raiding the winter supply of fruit wine, or some other precious community commodity.

I rationalized my actions, saying, "We were going to run out soon anyway." Nancy, unimpressed with my logic, told me that as part of my penance I had to write about my transgressions on the blog. She has also hidden the few remaining morsels of chocolate, and refuses to tell me where they are.

On a side note, Thailand is probably the worst source of sweets and dessert type foods in the world. mung bean balls anyone? Or how about a red bean popcicle?