Thursday, January 31, 2013

First Grocery Trip

Yesterday I cleaned out the kitchen freezer to make way for this months challenge. I did leave in the few ice cream sandwiches we had left for hubby and Tyler as well as some homemade English muffins and corn meal. However I purchased more corn meal today to keep things within the rules. I am not going to open the fresh bag of corn meal just to have this bag wasted.
Other than milk, eggs, and condiments not much was left in the fridge.
AJ the beagle and I had a nice little nest to work on recipes last night while we tracked the severe weather that came in. Scary storms but no damage thankfully.
I decided today was the best day to do next weeks grocery shopping as I had some time on my hands. Should be cleaning but....... It was really hard to pick up most of this stuff as I have homegrown/dehydrated or canned/frozen setting in the pantry but I gotta play by the rules! Notice there is only canned fruit this week. I was afraid I would go over budget if I bought fresh.
This weeks meat purchases. I will pick up a roasted chicken on Sunday for next week as they are on sale for $4.99 each at that time. I got in on BOGO sales for the hot dogs and Kielbasa, so I am a little ahead of the game in the meat department for the month.
Potatoes were also BOGO, can't pass that up, they should last for the month. I think I bought more sugar than I needed but they were on sale and I had good coupons to boot.
This is our junk food for the week. I had a coupon for a free soda. What the heck why not take one home to pass on to the DD's or maybe even use it for Sunday dinner. Hubby nor I really drink soda's.
I was able to move things around a little in the kitchen to make room for this months pantry items. By the end of next week most everything will be used up.
This pork loin was marked down to $7.08. A 4 pack of pork chops were on sale for a little over $8.00. After taking a very small amount of time to cut the loin up we will now get two pork chop meals from this $7.00 roast. MUCH better deal!
 The freezer after. We have enough hot dogs to last all month, more than likely we will have more than we can use. I know there will be plenty of Kielbasa for all month (I hate the stuff but hubby is a big fan) I made up patties from the pound of sausage, that will go for 2 rounds of breakfast.

It was so hard to buy groceries that I have in the pantry already but I am going to do my best to stick with the rules in place for the month. I am soooo not use to shopping for meals like this anymore. I spent countless hours working up a meal plan and grocery list yesterday that would hopefully stay within the weekly budget of $67.00.

Well I can tell you right now I failed :( I think I can still stay within budget for the month but having to purchase so many staples blew the budget. We should have many things that will last us the entire month, hopefully next week I can come out with a lower amount spent.

Here is the damage done. Total spent $94.36 Total save with coupons and sales $30.20 I am going to bump the total spent this week to $100.00 as I will be picking up that roasted chicken on Sunday.

 Tomorrow is the big day, the start of eating only from what I have purchased for the challenge. I am going to make noodles later today for the freezer but will rotate them to the outside freezer as we already have some made up out there that I don't want to go bad. I think they will be fine but some habits are just hard to break, rotating food is one of them.

Hubby is unaware of this months challenge. It will be interesting to see if he will even notice. I think I have picked up what we need for meals and family favorite snacks but until I get this party started I won't really know. My sweet man is usually pretty good about going along with my odd idea's and ways of doing things but there have been a few times he has said "I didn't sign up for that challenge" Case in point when decluttering the attic was done with a little help from him. Ha he is also not totally on board with the No/Low spend challenges during the year but since he works out of state right now it doesn't affect him.

Off to get some of this house work knocked out as AJ the beagle seems to be more interested in sunning at the back door than stepping up to the plate.


  1. I am really anxious to see how you do on this challenge. It's going to be quite a journey- xo Diana

    1. Ha, you are so right Nana. I think there will be lots of "Making Do"

  2. I've been discussing your challenge with my husband and was happy to see your first shopping trip posted last night. We both decided if we would stop drinking diet pepsi, we could probably handle this challenge. A lot of our food money goes to soda...what a shame. (which is something I, personally, am working on)

    1. We gave up soda long ago, sweet tea was the one thing I had a really hard time letting go of :( now it's mostly water, decaf tea sometimes, juice and such. I bet it would save money even if you just cut back a little at a time

    2. Yes, but most folks who are on food stamps are low income. They do not think of soda as a treat, but as an everyday drink. I have a family member who has been on food stamps for over 15 years. Yes, you read that right. Never has she been made to look for a job. Her youngest is 13. Based on the average, she should be getting $381 a month. That is $131 more than I spend on food, and we eat healthy. They eat alot of junk food. Lots of prepackaged food too. For example, our local grocery store has those small pizzas on sale for .77 cents each. I noticed many in the store with at least six in their carts. They look gross to me, but for many, that is a very cheap lunch or dinner.

      Something about these challenges that do not sit right with me. If a person is on food stamps, they probably can not afford much in the way of electric and gas, so less cooking. I would say this good thing about the family member above, she and her daughters do wear sweaters instead of turning up the heat. They have no A/C. Most can not afford a paper to get coupons, so they can save a little more, to buy a little more.

      I think a true challenge should be based on the amount you get. No coupons. Try food shopping without coupons and I believe you will have a better idea of living on food stamps. I could be wrong, but I believe the average food stamp recipient does not use coupons. Plus I would check with your state. We live in CA. so the amount could be higher than $127.00 My husband is retired Navy, going back to college. He receives $1200 for BAH, but if we still lived in San Diego, he would receive $1800. You may be able to spend more, or maybe you would have to spend less than the $127. Maybe a true challenge would be to buy what the average food stamp recipient buys. If one can really find out. I doubt one would be eating healthy.

      I do admire you for trying this, but there is so much more than just buying based on some average.

      blessings, jill

    3. Jill you may be right that many on public assistance dont use coupons but one can only hope they get as much bang for their buck as they can. I am not sure what the average on assistance would buy, afraid you are right that many do purchase prepackaged food. So many people have lost the skill of real cooking. I came up with the amount of $127.00 each from the average recived in NC where we live.

  3. I think it would be soo hard not to use what's on hand, especially pantry items. It'll definitely be a learning experience for you, Debby as you have a nicely stocked freezer & pantry! Let us know when/if hubby figures it out!! lol!!

    1. It really is a learning experiance Carla. I will be sure to share if and when hubby knows whats up!!