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01-07-2012, 09:03 AM #46
Wendy you are doing great! You have put a lot of thought into your budget and I think that means you are highly likely to succeed.
Don't beat yourself up over the pizzas, it can't be helped. But it can be a lesson learned. I try to always keep a couple of frozen pizzas buried in my deep freezer. I normally make pizza from scratch. Spending $5 on a frozen pizza to have in case of emergency is cheaper than spending $20 on delivery. The trick is to keep it hidden and not use it for regular meals.
- 01-08-2012, 06:38 PM #47
As long as we don't get groceries again until Thursday (and as long as I calculated everything correctly) we are under budget for groceries (for this 2 week period) by $17.46!! Sounds little, but to us that's huge!! We have our meals planned so I can't see that we would need anything else. I turned down a couple things that 'sometimes' get on our list if money allows - fruit snacks for the kids (we only get this rarely lately - was tempted to get them as they were on sale, but instead we got an extra bag of apples) and nutella (no name brand) we usually get that for sandwich spread for lunches - about $5, but noticed today that the first ingredient was sugar. Got lunch meat instead. would like to look into buying a turkey ham or something that is precooked to slice thinly for sandwiches to see if that would work out cheaper. Would have to find something that cuts very thin though for that to work. So anyways I'm feeling pretty good right now about the groceries.01-09-2012, 01:02 PM #48
I may not be saying anything new here to help you with your grocery budget but I thought I would just throw it out there just in case it helps you or someone else watching your thread.
1. On one of the last few days of the month I go through the deep freezer and make a list of the meats I have.
2. I make a meal plan for as much of the month as I can just using those meats and what I have in my pantry/small stockpile(I miss my years stockpile but no longer have the room. I had planned on trying for 4 months but still I think I have no room. I guess I can have a 2 month food and 6 month HBA household....I degress...my dh says I always have to make everything about myself but I have NO IDEA what he is talking about!)
3. I then finish the meal plan for the month while making a rough shopping list.
4. My budget for 4 people and my dh eats like 2 so I always figure for 5 is $400 a month. I always spend it all but don't go over.
I only go to the grocery ONCE a month. I do go to 3 stores but I do it usually on the same day it takes easily 6 hours with both me and dd working.
I have an extensive coupon binder. I spent $40 a month just on the Sunday Dallas double pack news papers because the coupons are better than our Longview paper. You have to figure $40 up front right into the budget. It takes time to coupon and often the store brand is the way I go. For me it isn't about the coupon, it's about get the best bang for my buck for a food item that tastes good. If it isn't good tasting, I don't buy it no matter what the savings.
I keep my food well organized as any good stockpile should be and I keep an inventory list. I am also working very slowly on my stockpile price list both on paper and on my phone.
I plan to buy a tablet so I can better track my purchases.
I am constantly prowling the web looking for cheaper good meals.
Add turkey to that ground beef. It's better for your pocketbook and your waistline and your heart will thank you!
Fresh fruits and vegetables are NOT a splurge. Eating crud and getting ill are.
Always always always have dry beans on hand. They store a long time and when you are hungry and out of food/cash they are a God send. They also move from a pot of beans to a pot of chili to meatless spaghetti with no muss and fuss! Throw a huge bag in the crock pot and save time and money!
2 cans minestroni (spelling!) soup
2 cans beans pintos, black or one of each
2 cans diced tomatoes
Its good, no meat, and cooks in 10 minutes! Hows that for fast food???01-26-2012, 02:37 PM #49
Just a quick update. Our grocery budget is still not where we want it. A couple take out dinners squashed it; as well as doing some stockpilling. Really like the feeling of getting our stockpile built up. Give it a couple more months and I really think our grocery budget will have no choice but to go down as well as our H&B/cleaning supplies (separate from our grocery bill, but will still be great with it lower). I'm learning to really watch for sales and stock up - we are stocked up on spaghetti sauce, spaghetti noodles, dish soap, cheese, peanut butter, toilet paper and juice boxes for the kids lunches so far. It feels great knowing I dont have to buy those items at full price
Another thing, kind of a biggy for us. We don't really do much for entertainment due to lack of funds and trying to get things organized financially. However after receiving a notice from Rogers Cable that our bill is increasing (after we just called and got a 15% decrease) we have decided to ... gulp ... cancel our cable. Our bill is only going up $2 or $3 plus tax a month, but we have been thinking of cancelling it before anyways, so it's just the icing on the cake that we got that notice. It will give us almost $35 a month extra (we just had basic). We can put that money towards other entertainment with the children that is more valuable, savings, debt etc. We really haven't decided where it will go, but we want more breathing room financially and that $35 can be used when we need it for stockpilling or when we simply decide we want to go on a daytrip somewhere.
We will kind of be cheating with the cable though, we are able to take my recordable DVD player over to my parents and record some shows to take home to watch anyways. My parents have a lot more channels than we did, so we'll probably get to watch a lot more interesting/educational/ useful stuff. Just a bit inconvienent; however for $35 a month more - it's worth it01-27-2012, 08:53 AM #50
Whenever we are strapped for cash, but do need to go food shopping, I limit the prices: I won't pay over 1 euro per kg for fruit or veg. If we are less strapped it's 2 euro, if we are not strapped, it's 3 euro. I refuse to buy anything over that price, unless it's something that's in season, but just does not get cheaper than that, and that one of us reallyreallyreally craves. Then, still, I only buy enough for 1 meal (and leftovers, if it's good for leftovers).
Sometimes it takes a bit of work and time from me to make this budget work: for instance, dd and dh don't really like apples, unless they are in a bowl with a fork. So, I cut and peel the apples for them.
Dh had to get used to a budget and to saving (never had any money before, so was used to spend it as soon as he had it). In the beginning I did not emphasize it, but complimented him on doing overtime and working hard for his 'new laptop' money. All the extra money was going to a savings account, and I would show him once a fortnight how he was doing. In the meantime, dh found a second hand laptop which he fixed up, sold, bought a new second hand one, etc. , and now has a neat side business going. Our savings have gone to a different goal and he is on board completely.01-27-2012, 04:49 PM #51
Just stocked up on ketchup today at $0.99 per bottle. I got 6 bottles. It expires in December so if we use 1 bottle every 2 months we should be okay with using it up before it expires. We make our own BBQ sauce from it as well as use it to make sloppy joes (as well as the other stuff it's normally used for). Wish it had a longer expirary date, but we should alright there. Got some great deals at the thrift store today and only spent $8.00. So having a good day!! Also got a refund for something that didn't work $25 - going to put that extra on our loan as it's unexpected money . DH called and cancelled our cable yesterday - oh the tricks they use to try to get you to stay with them. Their last attempt "If you change your mind please call us back before such & such a date". So near the end of February our cable will be gone. I thought I'd be upset about it, but it feels good to be in control of the money We have started a new month on our budget - will be interesting to see how we do with the groceries as we are getting quite a stock pile (just sale stuff so far). I've never couponed before either, but I'm combining a coupon with a sale and getting DH deodorant for $0.88 later today. I know it's small, but it feels great
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