Luckily, for my family, I am cheap. I refuse to pay full price for juice. So, many moons ago, juice was not on sale. So I didn't buy it. That was okay, because I like to stock up when it is on sale, so we had plenty.
But it wasn't on sale the next time either.
Or the next.
And then we ran out of juice.
So you know what we did?
We drank water.
I can hardly believe it myself. I love Juice. My kids LLLLOOOOOVVVVVEEEE juice. What kind of mother does not buy enough juice for her family? What kind of mother makes them drink water?
I'll admit we went through a bit of withdrawal. We kind of quit cold turkey and took a few weeks before my kids stopped asking, "juice, please" with every meal.
There have been several sales on juice since then. I even had a coupon for juice once, and you know what I did with it? I threw it away.
We drink water now.
And we like it.
I had no idea how many benefits there would be by cutting out the juice.
1. Money, money, money ... We have saved at least $5 a week just from juice. I know, its only the cost of one cup of coffee, but still that's more than $20 a month. That $20 equals more than $240 in a year! Just for juice. I could get 3 weeks of real food for that same amount of money.
2. Better health... Now, when cold season comes along I don't have to beg my kids to drink more water. I don't have to add sugar, buy pedialight, or mix in some juice just to keep them hydrated. They drink it all by themselves. Amazing.
3. Less wasted food... Now that juice was not the main entree for lunch, snack, and dinner, my kids actually started eating real food. They were not filling up on the empty calories from juice, so they would still be hungry enough to eat whatever it was we were having for dinner. We started getting requests for seconds on food, and not juice any more.
4. More adventurous... Now that my kids were actually hungry at lunch time, I could introduce them to a wider variety of food. They actually voluntarily tried foods that I could only beg them to look at before.
5. Treats are treats... We still have the occasional juice for special occasions, or when company comes over. My kids get excited, and take their time drinking it, because they know how rare it is.
6. Adding Nutrition... We have started doing more smoothies, which everyone loves. They are even better than juice. They are cold like ice cream, but they are made from actual fruit. And I can add spinach and other goodies that my kids have not quite acquired the taste for. Yet.
7. Cleaner everything... It is so nice to not have to worry about spilled juice on the table, clothes, whatever. If water spills, it is okay, even if we don't clean it up for a while, no problem. And I am not scared to open sippy cups that I find under the backseat of the car, I know it's just water.
I never imagined that cutting out juice would have such a positive effect on our family. I thought I was just being cheap, but it turns out I was making a good decision for my whole family. Who knew? This is how teaching money and improving my kids health works for me.