I Give up!
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Thread: I Give up!

  1. #1
    Registered User acabin42's Avatar
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    Default I Give up!

    I have been buying groceries without any thought to price, etc. I have figured out that I NEED to try something else. So I am using the envelope system for my groceries/gas/misc. The bills are fine. They get paid on time in an orderly fashion. But I am spending way too much at the grocery store (Wal-Mart). So starting today, I will be filling up my envelopes for the month, and trying very hard to stick to them. Shopping everyfew days, spending anywhere from $40 to $80 is getting to be absurd. There is just my DH and me. I have budgeted $50 for food, and $15 gas/misc. per week. So, wish me luck. I really started putting money back,and I want to be able to continue that. I need to buckle down and stick to it.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    Try not to shop more than once a week. If you go to the store too often, things find their way into your cart whether you need them or not.

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    Registered User dinah's Avatar
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    you might find it more helpful to make a meal plan (& perhaps a snack plan as well) and make a detailed grocery list from the meal plan and only buy something if it's on the list!

    i do way better at the grocery store if i have a meal plan and a detailed grocery list.

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    Registered User savvy_sniper's Avatar
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    Slowly stock your pantry with ingredients when you find them on sale for things you prepare regularly. Plan your meals around what is in your pantry. I can go weeks without going to the store if needed.

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    Super Moderator Spirit Deer's Avatar
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    I shop with a list, but if I find a killer deal that's not on the list, I'm buying it. Like the case of evaporated milk I just got 4/$1, when the normal price here is about $1.29 or more a can. It does not make any sense to pass up stuff that will save money in the long run, but I do totally agree with having a list so your usual needs are met and you don't forget things, so you can take advantage of advertised specials, and so you can focus more on what your actual needs are for the week instead of just grabbing what might look good.

    Oh, yeah, the old cliche about not shopping when you're hungry is really true, too.

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    Shop the sales and pretty soon you'll not have to pay full price for anything. This is an area that people can save thousands of dollars a year because of how high food is marked up.

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    Registered User acabin42's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replys. I was in a habit of just shopping once a week, then slowly it got to be more often, just to pick up one or two items, but ended up spending more.

    I will keep all of your suggestions in mind and try to do better. Thanks again!

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    I hear your pain. I have been forgetting to put things on the grocery list and, as a result, am running to a nearby more expensive store to purchase items. It adds up. I need to sit down and draw up a menu tonight or tomorrow, make a grocery list, and be prepared to shop Saturday.

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    Moderator Ceashels's Avatar
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    Sounds like a nice turning point. It takes a while to get used to the envelop system... I've robbed one envelop to fund a different envelop MANY, MANY times. LOL

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    Registered User Momto5RN's Avatar
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    i am weird- i actually spend more on a once a week trip because i worry i will need something and buy more.

    i will go to maybe walmart for a few things on weekend and then stop in locak superfresh at least 2x a week and wander thru the markdown fruit and veggies- look for meat markdowns and bakery markdowns

    but i only buy what i need and came in for and any really good markdown deals .
    i usually pop in before i carpool my youngest so i may only have 15 min to shop and check out which i guess helps me go faster .

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    Registered User sabrelvssammy's Avatar
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    Dh and I eat what we like to call the 'catch of the day'. Working at a grocery helps coz I am the first to see some of the great produce & Dh's meat (I don't eat it) markdowns. I grab what looks good and what we can't eat immediately I will chop up and freeze for those times when there is nothing good being marked down. Since I am not at work everyday, oftentimes I will just stop in and see what is available. Plus since Dh eats a fresh banana everyday I only get 2-3 days worth at a time, forcing me to stop.

    The rest of our meals are rounded out by whatever loss leaders I have stockpiled or other items that I have found at a great price and stocked the cabinet with. I rarely pay regular price for anything and there is really nothing that we 'have to have'... we are pretty flexible in our food choices. Plus we don't eat many processed foods and 90% of what we do eat is from 'scratch'- that keeps the costs down further.

    I have never really calculated what we spend on groceries, but I would say $75-100 a month and that's it. And now that the garden is in full swing and we can begin to eat out of it, plus can & freeze for the winter months I hope to bring that cost down even further.

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    Registered User khaski's Avatar
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    My one suggestion- if you've been spending $40-80 2 or 3 times a week, cutting down to $50 a week will feel very drastic. Might you be better off cutting back bit by bit, say, $90 the first month per week, $80 the next month, etc, til yu're down to the $50?

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    Registered User moasmom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by khaski View Post
    My one suggestion- if you've been spending $40-80 2 or 3 times a week, cutting down to $50 a week will feel very drastic. Might you be better off cutting back bit by bit, say, $90 the first month per week, $80 the next month, etc, til yu're down to the $50?
    I agree with this. And rather than picking an arbitrary, not-based-on-your-life dollar amount to stick with, I believe it's much more effective to examine how you shop and work on implementing changes (like the suggestions above) that lower your monthly total by default. What I mean is, if you make your shopping list from the sale flyers, you will absolutely spend less. If you make and use a pricebook, you will spend less. If you make more things from scratch, you will spend less. And so on.

    That way, you can gradually decrease the amount of money needed in the grocery envelope until you get it down to a number that makes sense for your overall budget.

    Good luck, you can do it!

    Kara
    Last edited by moasmom; 06-18-2012 at 04:56 PM. Reason: spelling

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    And I'd suggest revisiting your recipes to see if they are using overly expensive ingredients, and if you can swap in some cheaper ones that still pack the same nutritional punch. Or finding new healthy, but cheaper recipes to make.

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    Registered User Rosebudget1's Avatar
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    I think your budget is too low. I would make a meal plan and shop the sales.
    I have been married 43 years and it's now just DH and I. It took me a while to figure out exactly what it really cost me. That can change when a holiday or family gatherings happens.
    Tonight is grilled cheese sandwiches and soup. Cheap and filling. There also an ear or corn wrapped in wax paper my DH can throw in the microwave! We do not go out to eat very often if at all. Our treat is Subway getting their $5 footlong bringing it home and splitting it!

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