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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 28th May 08, 1:24 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    June 2008 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 28th May 08, 1:24 AM
    June 2008 Grocery Challenge 28th May 08 at 1:24 AM
    Hello everyone,

    Welcome to the sixth Grocery Challenge of 2008.

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your March budget, then keep on posting in the May Grocery Challenge.

    As always this challenge is to reduce your own grocery budget to levels that you will be pleased with, not forgetting that we always recommend that you stay inside your own comfort levels and take things gently one step at a time. Remember that this is not a's designed to take you and your grocery spending to a level you are happy with.

    If you are new to the challenge I have quoted the advice from Galtizz below which will help you get started.

    Please post into this thread for help and advice and support at any time. Good luck to everyone taking part!

    I have said this before, but for all the newbies to the challenge;

    For the first month I took a guess at the budget but I really had no idea how much I was spending.

    I found the best thing is to have a guess the first month but SAVE ALL OF YOUR RECEIPTS (and yes, that does include the ones from the local shop when you run out of milk ), then at the end of the month add them all up and have a look if you were on budget, if not, it doesn't matter because your budget was a guess. For the next month you can use the total of your receipts and take a bit off to get a realistic budget, just shave off as much as you think you can, it could be £1 a week or £20 a week.

    If you are currently spending £200 a month don't suddenly drop it to £100 - you'll never do it but if you cut £20 a month off for a few months you'll get there eventually without feeling you're missing out on anything.

    You might think you've done everything you can in the first month but someone always comes up with a new idea and, if you try it you often find you save a bit more (unless you are SarahSaver who is an expert at this and could only save more if she turned her back garden into a paddy field and lived on rice ) In the first month I thought, I'm planning meals, I couldn't possibly save any more, but then I started double cooking and freezing, and making soup instead of buying it in tins.

    I've been doing this since Feb but only saved ALL of my receipts last month, it has given me a much better idea of where it is all going. Budget for next month is £80 for 2 of us, I'll start on 30/4. I could probably save more, by eating different foods but I can afford to live on £80, I have saved a lot of money since Feb. and I don't waste food or money any more. So I'm happy with my budget.
    by Galtizz

    Wishing everyone a good month.


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    Last edited by Former MSE Wendy; 03-06-2008 at 4:50 PM.
Page 116
    • searching_me
    • By searching_me 21st Jun 08, 5:29 PM
    • 18,406 Posts
    • 63,340 Thanks
    just had my first shop of july delivered for some reason i didnt recieve my juice but they're refunding me although a plus i got some high juice that i didnt order but hey its free (checked the reciept) so aint gonna complain i cant fit anything in my my fridge, cupboards and both my freezers well chuffed only have to buy bread (dont like ordering it online as it goes off in a day) so that £90 off my gc so off to update my sig ... hope your all good and well xxx
    Still searching .....
    • cookinmummy
    • By cookinmummy 21st Jun 08, 5:33 PM
    • 4,229 Posts
    • 73,730 Thanks
    Hi newbies!

    Just updated sig as spent £59.20 at Mr T this morning. So, just got one more shop at the end of the week as we have vistors staying for the weekend so that's always expensive - but we shall see! Still I am expecting (fingers crossed) that I will be under budget - which would be a surprise as we were spending over £100 a week before this month - stuff we obviously did not need! :rolleyes:
  • JayJay14
    DD1 rang this morning to say she had just done an inventory of her cupboards and freezer and couldn't believe how much food she had so I thought that I might have a look too - well I coud feed an army and there was I thinking 'haven't got anything in'

    So now I have a list of everything in the freezer - I'll do the cupboards later when I've recovered from the shock.

    Went shopping today for an interview outfit as I have been put on the redeployment register at work this week, my job tecnically ceases to exist on 30th of this month though what I am supposed to be doing after that I have no idea. I now have a 'key worker' whose job it is to find me another placement within the council where I work. I have up to 6 months to get this sorted but as I have been in my current job for 17.5 years it is all a bit traumatic. She has put me forward for one job which I would really like but I don't want to get my hopes up to much. Still I got some really smart black trousers at New Look and a top in H&M and spent the grand total of £23 so I feel like I've had a bit of a treat as clothes are something I don't seem to buy very often (I'm a big lass fo my options are limited)

    Anyway I have to get back to my personal statement for my CV or there will be no jobs for me

    On the GC front I think I'm doing ok but have got rather a lot of milk in the freezer - does anyone else think it is odd that there are such good offers on milk at the moment but the price of butter is through the roof?
    • lil_me
    • By lil_me 21st Jun 08, 6:18 PM
    • 13,142 Posts
    • 115,691 Thanks
    Angelreasunshine what works for me is a pot. I bulk buy then put the money for the stuff into a pot as I use it, then it's built up ready for next time. EG If I use a pack of loo rolls which cost £2 when I take one from the store cupboard I put £2 in the pot, which then comes out of the months budget.

    JayJay good luck!

    £91.69 spent so far here and 1 week left if I spend what's left next week I want a good slap! Still amazed how long the stuff in the freezer is lasting us, been buying fresh etc to go with it when needed but should be enough meat stuff in there for at least another week. All the parts have arrived (only took them 3 months) to get one of the freezers fixed so needs emptying which I find totally uncomfortable as I like to have a lot in but it's saving me some ££, well ok maybe not as I'd already spent it to have the stocks in the first place but this month looks better.
    One day I might be more organised...........:confused:
    GC: £200
    Slinkies target 2018 - another 70lb off (half way to what the NHS says) so far 25lb
    • greent
    • By greent 21st Jun 08, 6:56 PM
    • 8,189 Posts
    • 83,195 Thanks
    Another milk offer
    Noticed in Mr T earlier that they have their 'Pure' milk (like Cravendale) now on offer at 2 x 4pts for £2 - usually £1.36 each. Think it's on until 8th July - so I shall stockpile some around that date, as it really does last longer

    Shouldn't really have gone in there - didn't 'need' anything, although I only bought stuff which was on my list ready for next month, so I was 'good' in that way! Only went in cos I was annoyed with DH and I wanted some space!! Still spent £25 though

    I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul
    Repaid mtge early (orig 11/25) 01/09 £124616 01/10 £104927 01/11 £89873 01/12 £76317 01/13 £52546 01/14 £35356 01/15 £12133 07/15 £NIL
    BTL Mtge 12/16 £69786 12/18 £54829 2019 OPs (#18) £3757/£5K
    Net sales 2019 £513.64/£500
  • Anitaj73
    Thanx nessquic80 i wish you lived next door so we could have cake and tea together
    Have copy & pasted the recipe into my folder on pc and will give that a go probably monday now as doing a roast tomorrow for 8 people....I'll let you know how i get on
    May GC £350/ spent so far

    family life = 2 adults DS x3 & DD1 + dog
    • angelnikki
    • By angelnikki 21st Jun 08, 7:59 PM
    • 892 Posts
    • 16,972 Thanks
    Offers Update (MrT)
    Noticed in Mr T earlier that they have their 'Pure' milk (like Cravendale) now on offer at 2 x 4pts for £2 - usually £1.36 each.
    Originally posted by greent

    that is 2 x 2 litres for £2 not 2x4pints And (for people that like to freeze milk) it says on the bottles not suitable for home freezing - normal milk doesnt say this.

    Wyke Farms Meadow Medium Cheddar 400g is only £2

    T.Strong St/Grnd100% Wholemeal Bread Flour 1.5kg is 55p

    Baby New Potatoes 1kg are 75p

    Muller rice are 27p each and Muller light 6 packs are £1.48

    • fluffysox
    • By fluffysox 21st Jun 08, 8:27 PM
    • 1,035 Posts
    • 8,800 Thanks
    Hello everyone!
    Online to read your tales form past couple of days and update my sig. Also to say thanks very much to greent for bread recipe- it worked - it looks like actual bread! Will be enjoying this tomorrow with bacon and salad for lunch and soup for tea. Also made my second batch of Millies cookies- first batch were appreciated but I left them in a bit to long so they were more biscuits than cookies- today's were gorgeous. Can't remember who posted this recipe but thankyou!!

    Mrs Mc have you posted the recipe for the fruit and coconut loaf it looks lovely?
    Bought some desiccated coconut in Mr Ts for 28p today and looking for suggestions how to use it from anyone please?

    Grocery spends this week: NSDs on Mon, Tues, & Weds. Thursday spent 65p in school canteen on carton of milk and a oatmeal and raisin cookie- these are freshly cooked in school. (my fave type of cookie if anyone has a recipe please post) Friday OH bought a takeaway for us out of extra earnings this week. Today: weeks shop, £43 in LIDL and £6.56 in Mr T which was Allinson's yeast, dessciated coconut and 4x 4pk of green giant sweetcorn which was on offer at £1.33. Feeling pretty positive, 9 days to go and £33 left, hopefully can end on target- touch wood!
    2016 MFW OPd £2000, 2015 MFW OPd 3000 then bought new bigger house with bigger mortgage.
    MFW OPd 2014 £2000 2013 £9700 2012 £2848.39 2011 £2509.58 2010 £11000 2009 £112002008 £4939
    Beautiful boys born May 2011 and October 2013
  • jackk
    I made Curry Queens Korma tonight, and it was fab, just like a takeaway curry. So if anyone wants an authentic curry takeaway, it's highly recomended. I did'nt buy cashews as they are too expensive, i used cheap chopped mixed nuts instead, available in the baking isle.

    Although i'm now a bit over budget as i did'nt have a few of the ingredients in .

    Jackie x
    • Kaz2904
    • By Kaz2904 21st Jun 08, 8:52 PM
    • 5,791 Posts
    • 37,638 Thanks
    I got up at 4pm and have been reading this almost solidly since then!
    I've been trying to catch up reading a few pages here and there but got so far behind it's taken me ages.
    I have to admit to having been skulking around the greenfingered board when I've been able to get here.
    Now then, the allinsons people, I too got the wrong one and now can't seem to get the right one in either MrT's or MrA's. I found that it worked as long as I got some warm water from the kettle and activated it with the sugar while I was getting the rest of the ingredients ready. I then just chuck it all in together and it works ok.

    ETA , completely forgot to post about my spends. So far £110.75 and my new month starts tomorrow.
    I'm declaring at £247.45 Mrs Mc.

    My July budget is set again at £300 please Mrs Mc.
    I'm happy that I'm under budget this month because I've bought stuff for camping and this is good that it hasn't had to deplete the savings too much.
    DH and I did a complete overhaul of our budgets on Tuesday night and are happy with where we are and where we're going so just need to put it into practice now.
    We went away last weekend for a few days camping which was great but that's my summer gone now. I don't have another weekend off until August when I go on holiday on the 16th. GRRRRRR!
    TTFN peeps, Kaz.
    Last edited by Kaz2904; 21-06-2008 at 9:01 PM.
    Debt: 16/04/2007:TOTAL DEBT £92727.75 £49395.47 £43332.28 repaid 100.77% of £43000 target.
    MFiT T2: Debt £52856.59 £6316.14 £46540.45 repaid 101.17% of £46000 target.

    2013 Target: completely clear my £6316.14 £0 mortgage debt. £6316.14 100% repaid.
    • mummygems
    • By mummygems 21st Jun 08, 8:56 PM
    • 345 Posts
    • 4,032 Thanks
    Thanks Shala_Moo- where do you get the tablets from? I have to say that sometimes we have to Frontline one of the cats at 3 weeks instead of 4 because he cleans himself too much so if these work better then that may be a good idea.
    Originally posted by FelineFantastic
    Just thought I would mention that my mum uses garlic capsules for keeping fleas at bay. She has 12 cats (yes 12 ) and due to some of the cats having allergies she cant use front line so for years now she has used garlic capsules which she pops in their food and lo and behold not one flea in all the time she has been doing it. I guess its because the garlic smells? The cats dont smell of garlic which is a bonus lol. This saves her an absolute fortune. She also uses it on her 2 dogs.
  • annelouise
    Great Sandwich Here
    Have just portioned up the chicken and celery soup,iced the lemon drizzle buns with lemon curd butter icing which gave a very good result.

    Taken bacon out for bacon sandwiches for dd9 and ds4 breakfast.

    Have got 3 large potatoes for jackets tomorrow.
    Washed 4 jam jars out for whatever I'm going to make,preserve or pickle.I haven't decided yet.

    Saw a great sandwich on uktv food tonight that I'm going to try when friends come over next month.

    Large foccacia sliced in two or large bap or burger buns - be versatile!!
    Drizzle with olive oil and chili oil if liked
    Layer with mozzerella,basil,spring onion,tomatoes (sundried)
    Pop in oven on low for 10-15 mins ,cut into 4
    Serve with salad

    Looked fabulous and can be made in advance and covered until needed.

    Be who you are and say what you think because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind....Dr Seuss
    • brummiebabe
    • By brummiebabe 21st Jun 08, 8:57 PM
    • 1,868 Posts
    • 5,170 Thanks
    Typical isn't it....booked Mr T delivery for today between 6pm - 8pm. However, had to pop and get salad bits to have with dinner, as delivery wasn't supposed to arrive til later. Got back from shops - there's the tesco van - I was his final delivery, so he turned up early 'on the off chance I'd be in!' Meant that I spent over budget and now have too much salad etc!!

    Never mind - am quite pleased with this month's challenge really. Am only overspent by £12.33 and my budget was £40 less than usual!! Shouldn't need to get anything else (my challenge finishes on payday - 25th June) so feel I've done well!

    Will be back in again next's a 5 week month for me
    20p Saver Club #33 60p/£100
    Christmas Saving £0/£1300

    Saving Target 2014 £25/£1000
    • funkyfunkymonkey
    • By funkyfunkymonkey 21st Jun 08, 9:25 PM
    • 2,724 Posts
    • 6,197 Thanks
    Anita, I know you have already had an answer on the buttercream for butterfly cakes and have already made your first batch. But, I thought I would suggest adding 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla essence to the butter cream.

    Also, putting a small dollop of jam in the bottom before the buttercream, once the wings are in place I also dust with icing sugar from a small tea strainer - makes them very special - unfortunately I now have to cook double batches as they are eaten too quickly - not very mse over all - but very yummy.

    AMAZON SELLERS CLUB member 0077 come and join us make some space and get hold of some cash, we're on the ebay and other auctions, car boot and jumble sales board.
    • mummygems
    • By mummygems 21st Jun 08, 9:26 PM
    • 345 Posts
    • 4,032 Thanks

    My paella is as follows - child and seafood phobic friendly.....

    I use precooked chicken from our roast - usually scraps and 1 whole breast chopped roughly.
    2 sauted onions
    Bacon/Lardons/Chorizo/Spicy Sausage ( Whatever you have lurking )
    Red pepper sauted
    Garlic cloves or lazy garlic
    Any rice even a packet of store own savoury rice - usually chicken or I cook off rice with a chicken stock cube until almost cooked
    Paprika to taste
    Salt and Pepper
    1/4 pint chicken stock
    Dash white wine
    For adults if not SFP (Seafood phobic) Handful of prawns

    1.Cook onions and bacon then add pepper about 6-8 mins,stirring occasionally.
    2.Add garlic & paprika -stir.
    3.Cook rice separately as instructions adding a chicken stock cube,when cooked add to pan and stir until well coated.
    4.Season well.
    5.In a large pan add stock and wine,chicken,veg and rice stir until heated through and most of liquid has been absorbed.At this point add the prawns as they only take 3 - 4 mins to turn pink and its ready to serve.

    Looks a faff but as rice is cooking everything else can be ready in 12mins.It is really good to add ay sad looking veg at bottom of fridge.I sometimes add grated courgette,grated carrots.
    Originally posted by annelouise
    Thank you so much. I always thought it was "special" rice lol. I have already planned my food for the next 4 weeks but might have to change one of the meals and make this instead yummy.
    • mummygems
    • By mummygems 21st Jun 08, 9:41 PM
    • 345 Posts
    • 4,032 Thanks
    MrsM - as today is the start of my new month could you please put me down for £350. This is more than usual but I have 2 parties to cater for and as I keep going over thought I would up my initial amount.

    Thank you.
  • Girl least likely to
    Evening All

    Had a little spend of £4.84 in Aldi yesterday. I only bought what I needed which is a first for me. Will need milk, yogs, f&v early next week.

    I must not to go over budget
    I must not to go over budget
    I must not to go over budget
    I must not to go over budget
    I must not to go over budget
    I must not to go over budget

  • Anitaj73
    Anita, I know you have already had an answer on the buttercream for butterfly cakes and have already made your first batch. But, I thought I would suggest adding 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla essence to the butter cream.

    Also, putting a small dollop of jam in the bottom before the buttercream, once the wings are in place I also dust with icing sugar from a small tea strainer - makes them very special - unfortunately I now have to cook double batches as they are eaten too quickly - not very mse over all - but very yummy.

    Originally posted by funkyfunkymonkey

    Yes thats a good idea, i did think it was a bit bland when i sneaked one I will try that and the jam i think as all my lot eat jam like its going out of fashion they'll love that.

    Girl least likely to read your sig for your GC and i see you have been bringing down £10 each month, i think that is a great idea and more achievable i will try that for the july challenge....thank you

    I must go to bed now (yawn) got lots of visitors tomorrow so must not fall asleep in the chair in the afternoon

    Gdnite all.....see you tomorrow
    May GC £350/ spent so far

    family life = 2 adults DS x3 & DD1 + dog
  • Girl least likely to
    Girl least likely to read your sig for your GC and i see you have been bringing down £10 each month, i think that is a great idea and more achievable i will try that for the july challenge....thank you
    Originally posted by Anitaj73
    Yes, it's worked quite well for me so far. I never could have dramatically reduced my budget all in one go. Never been one to jump in at the deep end, more of a dipping my toes in first to see what the water's like kinda girl . Good luck Anita
  • Pip-squeak
    LearningTo Save - This is the broad bean burger recipe. I use the older broad beans from the allotment but frozen would do just a well. I got the recipe from a weekend supplement and it sounds quite fussy but is infact very easy. The burgers stick together really well. i have frozen some unfloured. They look OK but have not tried them yet.

    Broad Bean Burgers
    1/2 teaspoon each whole cumin, coriander and fennel seeds. (i think you cound substitute ground spices for this)
    25g chard
    4 Tablespoons of olive oil or a mixture of olive and other
    350g potatoes
    305g shelled broad beans
    1/2 teaspoon chopped chilli or a pinch of powder
    2 crushed garlic cloves
    1/2 teaspoon turmeric
    3 tablespoons fresh corriander chopped (I didn't have this so left it out)
    40g breadcrumbs
    1 egg
    50g plain flour

    Dry roast the whole seeds and then grind
    wilt the chard in a tablespoon of the oil abd then chop
    boil the potatoes in salted water for five mins then add the broad beans and cook for another 8 mins or until done.
    drain and add the ground spices, chilli, garlic, termeric, 2 tablespoons of the oil and pepper.
    Mash roughly then add chard, coriander, breadcrumbs and egg and stir together.
    Shape into fat burgers - wet hands first
    Coat with flour and chill for half an hour if you have time!
    Fry in oil (not olive) for about five mins on each side until golden brown

    Serve with sour cream or yog or just in a bun with some salad

    As I say sounds complicated but not really once you start. I am not very good at exact measures and they still worked well.
    My OH cannot eat gluten so I used GF flour and his special bread and they still worked well.
    Good luck
    Challenge 2 adults food and household.
    2009 £1214.37
    Target for 2010 £1250
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