Friday 31 July 2020

The Grand Unboxing of My Ration Pack

It's here 😃

 My Ration Challenge pack arrived just before I left home in Wales and headed via Mum's in Manchester back to the Van near Garstang, and back to my Van Life after a few days babysitting the chickens and Ginger while Alan worked down South.

I quickly did an unboxing video and left it uploading while I got myself sorted out, and here for your delight and delectation ... as some famous presenter used to say, I forget which one ... are my delightful Mancunian tones talking you through the contents of the box.

I then weighed out the additional things I'm allowed, the flour and rice from the vouchers, my sardine replacement 120g of extra red lentils and then bagged everything up ready to bring to the Van.  Even if I end up travelling with my food it's not going to take up much room in the car is it, so it will easily be transportable.

Thank you so much to everyone who has so very kindly sponsored me already.  I know it's still early but it is so good to see the level of sponsorship rising and to know that we are between us doing something so worthwhile.


At the time of writing this I was at number 68, but as you can imagine we all move up and down like little yoyos.  I am in team Vegan Squad on the Team Leaderboard and obviously under my own name on the individual one.

Sue xx

Thursday 30 July 2020

Doing the Challenge Slightly Differently to Last Year

Last year I took part in the Ration Challenge as an individual, this year I decided I would join a team.

  You still have to earn your way through all the levels to have the little extras that make the challenge bearable but there are a couple of perks to be had as a team member, as well as the moral support you get from people also doing the challenge.  More needed I think by anyone who doesn't have a wonderful blog readership and friends that I have here.

Being in a team, which is a maximum of six people, means that we all get to use the spices that our other team members have chosen as their spice of choice ... as well as our own.  So up to now as well as the Cumin that I earnt for self sponsoring I also have the ability to add Cinnamon, Paprika and Chilli powder to my little Ration Challenge larder, two team members have yet to decide on their spice of choice.   We also get to have 210mls of milk each, which I'm thinking I will use to make some rice pudding for breakfast on a couple of the days.

I can't picture what 210mls of milk looks like so I am going to have to pour some into a measuring jug and have a look ... it doesn't sound like much does it, but it will be a very welcome addition!!

And thanks to the last donations I received I have now reached the dizzying heights of being able to have 170g of a vegetable of my choice.

And, just the same as last year because it worked so well I have chosen onions.

I had a little weigh-athon to remind myself just how much onion this can be.

Thank you so much to everyone that has sponsored me up to now and for all the good wishes and interest shown in the Ration Challenge.  I'll be back tomorrow when I am back at the Van with another update.

Sue xx


Wednesday 29 July 2020

Looking Around for Inspiration

As well as the recipes that I have saved from last years Ration Challenge I am also taking this pre-Ration Challenge time to have a look around for other inspiration.

Last year I signed up late to the challenge and only just managed to get my ration pack in time so I did not have the luxury of advance time to plan and prepare.  It was only my years of doing personal challenges along with the times I did the Live Below the Line Challenge that helped me get through and gave me the inspiration to try things like Kidney Bean Dip and Flatbreads.

This year I have the time to pick up ideas from the Facebook group and a few other sources.  

Someone shared this YouTube clip yesterday and it seems like quite a good idea if I want to use some of my red lentils this way.  I might have a bit of a practice and see if they as nice as they sound.  There's also something similar with chickpeas ... time for a bit of clip watching methinks.

Thank you everyone for all your support up to now - YOU ARE STARS!!

And a massive THANK YOU to the two donations that came in since I was on the computer last night.  I have decided this morning that any Anonymous donations will have the amount donated listed next to them on the sidebar list, so that if you wish to do it this way you can see that your donation has been received and acknowledged, as well as the thank you email you should get from Concern Worldwide.

Sue xx

Tuesday 28 July 2020

Reaching Another Level


What can I say ... except a massive THANK YOU.

Already your wonderful sponsorship has winged me past the level of earning salt for the Challenge and now I am well on my way to the next level.  It seemed only right to sit little 'Happy Man' next to the salt for the photo, as I was doing a little happy dance myself  😁

If I reach £250 I will be able to add a vegetable up to 170g in weight to my little Ration Challenge larder.  And if I get there I have decided that the same as last year, I will choose onion.  You just get so much more flavour in foods with some gently sautéed onion don't you.

I promised you a peek into my little Ration Challenge notebook if I reached the next level didn't I, so here you are.

I pulled up some of the posts from last year's Ration Challenge blog  posts, copied out the recipes and printed them out.

A bit of Prit Stick later and they were all firmly stuck in my book, ready for referring to if I end up as brain fogged as I did last year.

Dhal ... the recipe that kept me going last year, I will definintely be using most of my red lentils to make it again this year.

I have just had an email to say that my Ration Pack box has been sent out to the Royal Mail, so it could be here in a couple of days.  Then suddenly it will all seem so much more real, would you like another little YouTube film of me opening it?

Again a massive thank you to all those of you who have already sponsored me and offered your support via the comments.  If you missed yesterdays post, once again -

Here is my fundraising page.

And the link will remain at the top of the sidebar until the end of the Ration Challenge.  I have also added a list of the sponsors up to now and I will add to this with each new donation.  They are in no particular order and if I have missed anyone off please give me a big nudge  😃

Sue xx

Monday 27 July 2020

Doing the Ration Challenge 2020

So I asked the question on my last post, you know the one, about whether I should once again take part in the Ration Challenge,  and if you would be interested in following me if I did, and quite a few of you were and were extremely supportive in your answers.  Then I had a think about it myself ... oh I remember the brain fog that hit half way through the week so well ... did I really want to do it again?

Well folks that answer came in a flash - YES.

It's a good cause, it's a brilliant Challenge and I need something to remind me that eating very simply is good, very good.  Alright ... eating with a little bit more variety is better but I am going to use the Challenge to simplify my eating habits again.

Lockdown has seen a plethora of vegan junk food entering the house, and once it's here it has to be eaten ... doesn't it, doesn't it 🤣🤣

So I've made myself a little Ration Challenge notebook, dug out the ration Challenge water bottle that I won last year, and I'm in the process of getting my head in gear while I answer questions on the Ration Challenge Facebook page from some of this years new participants who are having a little wobble.

Fundraising is going to be hard this year and yet if we want to get the pack, have a spice and earn the few extras we are allowed to help us through the Challenge we do need to climb the fundraising ladder.

Here's a page I've stuck into my little notebook -

This is to help me monitor where I am on the Earnings Rewards ladder.

As you can see by my one and only tick I currently have my unlimited spice.  This was earned, along with my ration pack, by self-sponsoring.  This year once again I have chosen Cumin.

It's no good me trying for teabags as I don't drink tea.  So my next aim is salt.

And oh boy do I need salt!!  

Last year I went through two thirds of a salt cellar worth just to get some flavour into my foods.

So will you help me get to the magic £125 level over the next few days?  Thanks to some of my family I am now at the dizzying height of £96.80.  Thank you so much if any of you are reading this  😃

You don't have to make it a huge amount, just scroll past the pictures until you get to Other Amount and type in whatever you would like to donate.  Every pound is gratefully accepted and very needed. 

 Last year between us we managed to raise £780.90 ... enough money to feed five refugees for an entire year.

I will put a link to my fundraising page onto the sidebar of this blog from now until the end of the Ration Challenge, so if you don't have any spare cash now you can easily find the link again.

Thanking you ... in anticipation of salt  😁

When I reach the next level I'll share what else I've stuck in my little Challenge notebook.

Sue xx

Monday 20 July 2020

The Ration Challenge 2020

In June of last year I used this blog to chart my progress and raise funds while I did the Ration Challenge.  Raising vital funds for food parcels Syrian refugees.  I managed a brilliant total, with your help of over £780.  And in total Concern Worldwide raised over a million pounds.

It's happening later this year 13th - 19th September ... due to Covid-19, but because of Covid-19 it's even more important that they raise much needed funds.  The camps are struggling, from what I've read really struggling to keep everyone healthy and well fed.  I received an email a few weeks ago asking if I would take part again and although I saved it I haven't signed up yet.

I don't know what to do, would there be the enough available money from family, friends and blog readers for some sponsorship this year to make doing this Challenge a worthy and follow-able Challenge for my blog?   Could we between us help Concern Worldwide gain more publicity and raise the much needed funds they need?

Would you be interested in an  'action replay'  of last years Challenge?  

With limited ingredients there's not much I could do differently if I wanted to eat all week.  I could maybe  go for the sardines this time as I have been occasionally eating fish ... but that would be the ONLY difference.

It's a dilemma,  so I'm leaving it up to you.

If my readers say do it ... I will do it.


Sue xx