Food Shopping a Challenge for Fairhaven Family of Eight
A trip to the supermarket can be stressful for anyone these days, but can you imagine having six kids to feed?
A Fairhaven couple with five boys and a soon-to-be adopted daughter face that challenge every week.
As a matter of fact, Vanessa Lagoa said she shops twice a week, spending over $300 each time.
Vanessa, who owns Salon V Beauty Lounge in New Bedford's North End, and her husband Jon, who works for the City of New Bedford, are raising a half-dozen hungry souls ranging in age from three to 16.
"Our kids literally eat non-stop!" Vanessa said. She calls them "little snack-asuruses."
"I generally shop at Aldi because it's the cheapest but get some things at Walmart or Stop & Shop when needed," Vanessa said. "I buy what's on sale for snacks, a lot of fruit, veggies, and almond milk, and always shop sales."
Soaring food prices are having an impact.
"I have cut back on things like steak tips and seafood because prices are so inflated and I almost always buy store brand everything," she said. "I used to do a lot more organic but just can't now."
Lagoa said her husband "eats eggs like there is no tomorrow, and an 18-pack is just under $5 now – and no, I'm not getting a chicken, as I have enough to care for."
When the family does order out, they have to be frugal about it.
"We love to get Riccardi's because it's local, affordable, and I can get a family-sized tray of chicken, broccoli and ziti, a salad, and a few pizzas for around $80," Vanessa said.
With such a large brood, Vanessa drives an SUV which costs about $83 to fill up "just for local driving for the week."
"Luckily, we have five boys so there are a lot of hand-me-downs and friends who pass along beautiful girl clothes for our daughter," she said.
Despite the challenges, the Lagoa family is getting by.
"We are fortunate to be able to still live somewhat normally, and we're grateful for that," she said. "I don't know how everyone is doing it right now, though. It's quite frightening."