Wednesday, January 25, 2012

End of Week 4

I think I skipped a week blogging about my weekly menu and grocery shopping. I had a busy weekend last week and just didn't get to it. We did eat, and I did buy groceries. Here are the stats:
  • Salisbury steak, mashed potatoes, carrot coins
  • chicken fajitas
  • chili and cornbread
  • chicken, spinach, and pesto lasagna with garlic bread
  • rotisserie chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, and green beans
  • a couple of nights eating leftovers

I spent $77.39 at the store, and still have:

  • some frozen chicken breasts,
  • some turkey pepperoni ( because I never made the pizza we were going to have one night),
  • plenty of lunch meat and sliced cheese for lunches,
  • and lots of cereal and eggs for breakfast.

What I've noticed is that groceries are so expensive! I'm trying to not use my debit card but to instead pay cash for all the items that I buy. Careful meal planning and paying cash are keeping my grocery bills down but I don't know if I really can do it for $10 a day. It was an arbitrary number that I picked out of the air - I made no effort to look back and see what I had been buying/spending ahead of time. It has eliminated my careless way of buying groceries, which was to see what was on sale and go get those things, and along the way put a lot of other random things into my grocery cart because they looked good, never really noticing what I was spending on groceries other than a sinking feeling in my stomach looking at my bank balance going down, down, down every day. Now I am making a list and sticking to my list. If I decide to vary from the weekly menu when I'm at home staring into the fridge, the ingredients come from what we have on hand instead of another trip to the grocery store. So even if I'm a bit over $75 each week, I think it is still progress.

There are exceptions. I'm okay with that though. Not only am I trying to be more frugal, I could stand to be a little more flexible. Saturday was a busy and long day for me, so we bought the rotisserie chicken when I was really too tired to do anything else. It was a big, very delicious bird, and fed us all dinner one night, and was leftovers for a couple people the next night. When I do go to the grocery store for additional items, I make a list and stick to that list. No more random shopping.

I think next week I will post a month's worth of grocery totals to compare January with previous months. Then I'll have something concrete to look at for those times when I need to get myself back on track.

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