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January 2011 Grocery Challenge

edited 29 December 2010 at 11:09AM in Old Style MoneySaving
2.6K replies 294.3K views


  • 69chick wrote: »

    I just wanted to ask, I have 3 young children (and a dh) and was wondering if any of you in similar circumstances could give any advice about making the budget go further...I know there is loads on here and I regularly have a long reading session for tips etc. but even when I am trying to be really good I know I could do a lot better..

    I estimate at the moment I am spending around £400 a month on groceries and I tend to buy most things when they are on offer or if not from the basics range...

    Hi 69chick, yes I am in a similar position. I have 3 children, mine are older, in fact 2 have close to adult portions. And 5 lunch boxes plus dog.I have only joined this month but have been lurking for years. I just wanted to give you some encouragement as I was spending approx £600 per month and have set myself £200. I will have gone over slightly but that is because I have done 2 bulk shops with approved foods as I am also doing the frugal challenge. But taking that all into account even with the overspend I will have cut what I have previously been spending in half!:jUnbelievable. And what is more the cupboards are stuffed, we have been eating much more healthily and the waste has stopped. I looked in the fridge the other day and instead of seeing bit and bobs and thinking I must go shopping my first thought was wow I could make so much from this lot. My top tips have been;
    • Just try to do one thing a day
    • Spend a couple of hours to scout the local shops to start you off to compare prices
    • Plan, plan and when you don't stick to the plan don't beat yourself up just looked at how much you did do in the plan.
    • Bulk buy 1 item every shop to make a stockpile, loo rolls, pasta, whatever is on offer
    • And my latest tip go shopping one day later than planned making use on the extra day of anything you have in the store-cupboard
    Just to give an idea on what we have been eating;
    • Risotto
    • Baked Pots
    • Couscous & HM savoury scones
    • Salmon carbonara
    • HM Pizza
    • Lamb tangine
    • Tuna pasta bake
    • HM soups
    • And plenty HM baking
    I really can't begin to thank everyone on this board for their generous tips & help. It looks to me that my dream of being debt Freedom2011 might just be a reality:Tand achievable.:rotfl:

    Send me a message anytime we can help each other.
    Frugal Challenge £9000
    Grocery Challenge £tba pm £
  • jintybjintyb Forumite
    1.7K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Photogenic Combo Breaker
    rosieben wrote: »
    I'm thinking it might be an opportunity to catch up on chores that I should do but don't do because I'm glued to some thread or other :rotfl:

    Hello, I'm Jintyb and I'm a forumaholic. Tomorrow is going to be well weird, but maybe I'll get on with other things,like finishing my book;)
    (nothing too strenuous LOL)

    you will always be rich enough to be generous.
  • Hi 69chick, yes I am in a similar position. I have 3 children, mine are older,

    Im in the same position as you guys! I also have a dh and 3 small children, and have never really budgeted before last week lol I have been spending probably about £500ish maybe more on the shopping each month and things must change for us, we somehow are spending more than we get in each month and im not really sure how its happening! I have deliberately set my budget for this month low, I am sure I will go over it but if I set it just slightly less than what we usually spend I would be trying to make sure it was all spent if that makes sense and wouldnt think about what I was spending, at the moment I feel so accountable to everyone on here and having to update my signature lol that I have bought no where near as much as I would have done and I have shopped so differently. My budget is for everything I buy in Sainsburys, so it includes nappies, formula, etc, which I think is where we might come unstuck, although I did stock up on nappies a while ago when they were on offer, so it might be alright. Ill be interested though come the end of the month to see how I have done, as this is a 5 week month for us too, and hopefully I will be able to maybe make an even lower budget for next month. But we will see! I do like a challenge though :)
    January grocery challenge- £338.09/£350
    £365 in 365 days- £25
    January NSDs- 9
    Money made on ebay- £16.89
  • edited 14 January 2011 at 3:32PM
    zebredyzebredy Forumite
    62 Posts
    edited 14 January 2011 at 3:32PM
    Wow so many posts to catch up on, but they were all worth reading :)

    Not spent anything on shopping this week so thats 5 NSD which really happy about as already over budget :( not to upset about that as one of my main problems (which I'm trying to get over) is that I'm always afraid we will run out and not have enough money to buy stuff later in the month, and I don't want us to starve (not that we would I know my mother would kindly bail us out, with me paying her back) I want to go a year where we don't borrow money from others and just pay back what we already owe (so clearing all our debts this year)

    Also as said before it was my first month on GC, plus after such a successful trip to the farmers market this month, may have to up next months budget as want to go there again, and buy more meat there then we did this month, as the quality is so so so much better.

    My hubby eats any old c*** but after we had some of the meat from the farmers market even he noticed the difference. Finally something we agree on where the extra cost is worth it.

    Note to self, leave hubby at home in future and budgeting may be a little easier in February lol

    Enough of my ramblings, GC budget screwed for this month but am becoming ok with that (really wanted to be under to prove I could do it) but at least I know where I went wrong, plus have action plan for other debts even have in writing in my small book, who we owe what too, and how to best clear them in the quickest time possible, so all is looking up for us at mo..
    Matthew, Izzy, Suzie, Harry, Darwin. My husband my cats, the main things that matter in my life...
  • elfenelfen Forumite
    10.2K Posts
    Spent £9.62 on bits in Aldi which leaves me just under £80 for the rest of the month. Not bad for halfway
    ** Total debt: £6950.82 ± May NSDs 1/10 **
    ** Fat Bum Shrinking: -7/56lbs **
    **SPC 2012 #1498 -£152 and 1499 ***
    I do it all because I'm scared.
  • edited 14 January 2011 at 3:53PM
    kipperskippers Forumite
    2K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker I've been Money Tipped!
    edited 14 January 2011 at 3:53PM
    Hi all, hope everyone is well.

    Today i bought the ingredients to make a special 'carbonara' for my DH as he loves this and served it with some nice H/M garlic bread. Every so often he comes home for lunch and i cook something special for him and we have time to chat without the kids....far cheaper than going out for a meal.

    The carbonara isn't runny (like carbonara recipes normally are), but we like it that way and it tasted lovely. Here's how i make it:


    6-8 slice of bacon cut into small pieces
    1-2 garlic cloves crushed/chopped small
    2 eggs
    3 tablespoons double cream
    salt, pepper, mixed herbs
    4 tablespoons of parmesan cheese
    1 onion chopped
    olive oil to fry
    • Cook Pasta separately.
    • Fry onion and garlic in a little olive oil until nearly soft.
    • Add mushrooms and bacon and fry until bacon is cooked.
    • Meanwhile mix eggs, cream, cheese and herbs and salt and pepper
    • Add cooked pasta to pan and pour over the egg mixture and toss about until cooked
    Serve with a nice h/m garlic bread and/or salad

    Tonight i am giving my DD's jacket potatoes for tea with tinned spaghetti and a sausage for DD2 and a whoopsied gammon steak for DD1.

    I'm hoping to visit Mr T's tonight as they have kelloggs co co pops 600g on offer at £1.45 and my DD2 loves these, so i may be spending quite a bit to stock up on them.

    Anyway, hope my recipe helps someone
    :j :j :j :j :j
  • 69p spent on a bag of porridge oats. More than usual as had to go to Coop (the only real shop here) but I have some eggs to use so will make two lots of these later to freeze.

    Any suggestions for using up some Doritos? I usually love them, but these are the fajita and tikka flavour and are SO strong to just eat as they are. I don't really want to chuck them out, so am hoping for some good ideas!
    Grocery challenge - Nov: £52/£100
  • boysmaboysma Forumite
    828 Posts
    Hi all

    Another 28.42 to butchers and Mr T today. Will have some things to get tomorrow but as site is down will update Sunday. Signature updated.
    Payment A Day £15 (started 17/5/14) :j
  • edited 14 January 2011 at 5:27PM
    wssla00wssla00 Forumite
    1.9K Posts
    edited 14 January 2011 at 5:27PM
    jintyb wrote: »
    Hello, I'm Jintyb and I'm a forumaholic. Tomorrow is going to be well weird, but maybe I'll get on with other things,like finishing my book;)
    (nothing too strenuous LOL)

    Is it the whole day :( :eek::rotfl: WHAT AM I GOING TO DO???

    My house is going to be spotless............
    Any suggestions for using up some Doritos? I usually love them, but these are the fajita and tikka flavour and are SO strong to just eat as they are. I don't really want to chuck them out, so am hoping for some good ideas!
    What about nachos? Use the fajita ones with perhaps some chicken onion and peppers and then add some cheese and pop it under the grill :)

    £8.45 spend in Lidl for tonight's belated birthday celebrations. Two big pizzas, drinks, garlic bread, potato wedges and the likes to feed and water four people!

    That's even less than the cost of a taxi home from town so dvd's wine (they are bringing that) and food will be brill for a cheap night!

    Anyway have a good night all :)
    Feb GC: £200 Spent: £190.79
  • I went shopping today and spent £37 in Morrisons. I could not resist some of the offers in meat, I bought a beef for two joint and a pork leg joint for around £3.20 each! Also 2 packets of ribs for £2.70. The pork is so much that it will last for two days + soup probably :D I bought a few things I did not need though: 2 resistant bags (I had to walk a bit with them), Kenko decaff 200g (was at £4, it is usually £3.20 for the 100g, so I thought it was a bargain), weight watchers slices (£1 each), 6 waffles (99p) and a few other bits. At least I am still within target! :D However, I again spent too much on transport. :(

    My new total is £ 115.74 :D

    I think tomorrow I will put more things on eBay, since this is going to be down! And chores too! :D
    Quit smoking *1st January 2010*

    13/12/2012, baby girl!!!
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