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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 27th Nov 08, 3:35 PM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    • #1
    • 27th Nov 08, 3:35 PM
    27th Nov 08 at 3:35 PM
    Guidelines for posting on the Grocery Challenge thread.

    What is the Grocery Challenge thread?
    This is a thread where people who are taking part in the Grocery Challenge can post for help encouragement and support and talk about anything related to grocery shopping. We ask that you try to keep on topic and post things that are relevant to the challenge.

    Posting grocery budgets and spends for the month
    Some people like to post their grocery budget and final spend for each month. If you wish to be included in the master list then please post these in red and in a large font as this makes it easier for the volunteers to keep a record of everyone’s totals.

    Number of posts
    In order to make the thread easier to read it would be helpful if users would try not to post multiple posts in quick succession.

    Chatty posts that are relevant to the Challenge are fine. Irrelevant chat or posts simply saying ‘Good morning/Goodnight’, ‘just popping on to say hello’, ‘I’ve sent you a pm’ etc aren’t, as they clutter up the thread and may be removed to make the thread easier for others to read. Unfortunately the board guides simply don't have the time to pm users individually when posts are removed to keep the thread on topic. If your post has been removed and you are unhappy with the decision, please feel free to send us a pm.

    If you want to say thanks to another user please use the thanks button and please post any chat not related to the Grocery Challenge into the Daily Thread or use the pm function.

    No Spend days (NSD’s)
    A number of people like to record that they have had a no spend day. Again to reduce the number of posts we would ask that rather than post just that you had a no spend day you record it in your signature and/or add it to a post that is directly relevant to the Grocery Challenge.

    Please keep these relevant to the challenge. While photographs of produce or cooking are great, pictures of semi-naked men or large clip art aren’t.

    Please don’t forget to check out the Grabbit and Shop but Don’t drop boards for any bargains and the Discount Codes 'n Vouchers (online & offline) board to see if there are any current vouchers around.

    Questions about recipes, freezing, techniques etc
    These don’t always fit into the Grocery Challenge. There are a number of threads where it may be more appropriate to ask questions. There is a wealth of information available on the Old Style board so please do a search to see if there is a better thread for your question. For more help with searching see here or feel free to send a private message to a board guide who will be happy to help.

    Useful Links to threads on the Old Style board

    Quick Questions thread

    Recipe thread

    Cheap recipe threads

    Don't throw food away challenge...

    The Complete Cooking Collection

    Old Style Daily thread General chat about Old Style (new thread started daily)

    Flylady thread Cleaning thread (new thread weekly)

    Enough is Enough (decluttering)

    Lose weight the Old Style way

    Finally if you are new to Old Style and want help to find your way around, this thread may help: Welcome to Old Style and there is some excellent practical help and advice on posting on MSE chat forums in this thread: Unofficial A-Z (Look here first)
    Last edited by Pink.; 28-11-2008 at 12:24 PM.
Page 28
    • AlwaysHappy
    • By AlwaysHappy 17th Dec 08, 2:14 PM
    • 1,487 Posts
    • 11,732 Thanks
    Thanks for your kind words of support yesterday, am feeling a bit better as having a much needed NSD, my month ends on the 19th as well so could have been worse. Need to meal plan like crazy for January and try and claw back some of the overspend.
    I'm not a failure if I don't make it, I'm a success because I :tried!
  • dink1
    Hi Mrs M,

    Sorry to hear you have been in hospital, hope you are feeling a little better now, I bet the guys have missed your input. working hard on another nsd. dink
    JanGC £250/£82 far:weight loss 1lb cc250/£86/cm40/£9.50
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 17th Dec 08, 5:42 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    Hi everyone,
    people seem to forget Christmas is not about presents, tinsel, food, cake, family parties and expensive gifts etc , it is to mark the birth of Jesus!
    Plan to make a late Christmas cake, some mince pies, maybe some other bits and bobs (some gingerbread tree decorations maybe). I think I will be a lurker from now on, simply don't have the time to be online as much these days- am trying to be out and about more (well now our colds are subsiding anyway!) and also play lots with DS too!
    Ok, hope this is not too chatty (mods feel free to delete me!). Wishing you all a lovely Christmas and New Year.
    Originally posted by OrkneyStar
    Very well said! Whether a believer or a nonbeliever-that is what Christmas is!!!
    Ive had at least 2 no spend days so not a lot to tell! DD made a nice pasta meal for us today which was well appreciated as Ive been out today helping a family friend(again). Not yet sure what I will do about my Asda order for the 21st-Ive cut it down a lot which means paying for delivery so I will probably end up cancelling. Having some items delievered from Asda online for Xmas-they still ahve a camera my dd wants(same as mine)and a great little black coat at under £16. Vowing not to buy any more clothes for at least 3 months in 2009. Also ordered a single duvet as me and DH are going to try two singles instead of a kingsize as we firght over the duvet all night. Oh we can but try-2 beds otherwise!
    Meat I cooked the other day has lasted well-think there is still some left and it needs using up. Bought some smoked salmon also and that has sort of "dissappeared"-2 dds rather took a fancy to it. DH wanted me to micro it no way was I going to "waste it" like that so I told him he must stick to the tinned stuff if he has no taste.:rolleyes:
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is £1500 pa £125 calendar month £28.84 pw for 3 adults
    • candygirl
    • By candygirl 17th Dec 08, 5:50 PM
    • 27,397 Posts
    • 116,579 Thanks
    Spent £4.60 on bread, potatoes n choccy today and need to get a few bits at weekend so might come in a bit over this month
    "You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf"

    (Kabat-Zinn 2004)
    • carolt2
    • By carolt2 17th Dec 08, 6:54 PM
    • 846 Posts
    • 14,784 Thanks
    Good evening everyone, just popped in to update signature.
    Been spending abit this week trying to stock up, spent £20ish pounds in pet store and £54 in Mr T,
    Not much more to buy for Xmas & New year.
    So feel pretty pleased and organised for a change.

    Donnajt, I agree the prices in tesco have gone up, have noticed on my last couple of shops that things seem much more expensive....iceberg lettuce £1.19

    OH is quite happy for me to do the shopping. he knows that i always work out whats cheaper per lb/kilo etc to make sure we get the most for our money
    Last edited by carolt2; 17-12-2008 at 7:01 PM.
    'Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle'
    • tessie bear
    • By tessie bear 17th Dec 08, 7:41 PM
    • 4,328 Posts
    • 29,793 Thanks
    tessie bear
    good evening....i hope everyone is going strong im looking forward to the kids breaking up for a rest (some hope)just wanted to say i have found the aldi 39p parsnips sprouts clementines are very good only thought the sprouts didnt last as long as others i have bought but for the money hoping to get some for thebig day next week i have discovered asda smartprice passata its 39p for a tetrapack and its been good in chilli and spag bol i was suprised how much prices have gone up sp tuna 55p a tin and cheapo noodles 10p im gutted about the tuna ive used that to make a few cheap meals over the years and also for sandwich seems a huge price rise but i suppose u have to get on with it.....oh and the 4p curry sauce was 20p still cheap but a rather large price increase
    • sparklymessygirl
    • By sparklymessygirl 18th Dec 08, 12:58 AM
    • 690 Posts
    • 943 Thanks
    hello (probably no-one around at this time of night - you know when you are dog tired but just get sucked in by the internet:rolleyes: ...)

    Anyway - a quick update seeing as I am halfway through my December grocery challenge - I am doing better than in previous months as I have got about half my budget (of £160) left. I have been aided by OH paying on one shopping trip so I don't have to count that - oh - I forgot too that he bought "me" (!) 3 lots of 8.55Kg for £10 Persil too. My neighbours have also provided dinner three times this month (because it was Eid and because they are lovely!)

    If anyone likes Rooibos tea - I have spotted packs of 40 for £1 in Asda - they only had Earl Grey when I was there but it is very nice too. naturally caffeine free and full of antioxidants

    I have run out of wine now and have vowed not to buy any more this month - won't be too tough as spending Christmas at parents and they will have loads there - so just need to keep going without any for one more week (I find this quite tough as am bit stressed at the moment with work). Have resisted big tins of chocs on offer which have been my downfall in previous months.

    Have made big pot of soup each weekend and wondering whether last Sundays will last until tomorrow...?(vegetarian). I'm sure in the old days they used to eat it for a week...(the soup is following the recipe from Asda's packet of Moroccan Seasoning - chickpeas, tomatoes, spices, soya beans, coriander - delicious)

    Ok - am off to bed.
    (Nice to be part of a challenge )

  • justpeyton4now
    I also dont find makro any cheaper, you can get a lot of good deals in home bargains (a personal fav of mine) and in other shops or even internet.
    Originally posted by nickynoo08
    I love home bargains also. I tend to get the "treat" type foods there for far less than the grocery shops. DH loves the sensation crisps and I get them for 39p there versus 89p and up elsewhere. I just have to put them in single serve portions in bags and hide the rest from him.

    Another good place is Approved Foods. Their stock changes frequently and there is shipping cost, yet you can get some items for a great price.

    My final fave is B&M. I have a number of them close by and save a bundle there.
    Last edited by justpeyton4now; 18-12-2008 at 7:00 AM. Reason: add link for approved food
    • sharronej
    • By sharronej 18th Dec 08, 7:21 AM
    • 563 Posts
    • 4,784 Thanks
    I'm off to the late night shopping tonight and when I get back I will sit down with all the receipts I have gathered and work out where I'm up to! I know I had one disaterous trip to Mr T where I spent £34.00 on bits and pieces and medicines!
    • liney
    • By liney 18th Dec 08, 7:27 AM
    • 4,889 Posts
    • 8,248 Thanks
    About the OP of the 2006 thread: Her shopping list which she posted contained barely any fruit or veg and her menu plan contained items she hadn't bought. Of course when questioned she always screamed that it was a "witch hunt" and people were always persecuting her because she was such a good moneysaver.....

    It was completely unrealistic, and in my opinion dangerous to have people striving to feed themselves and 2 growing children on such a small amount.

    By all means, save money on your groceries, and i know you are having your fruit and veg boxes delivered so will not be in the same situation as the 2006 OP, but please remember to put your health above moneysaving. I think dragging all your toiletries out is a great idea and will do the same later
    "On behalf of teachers, I'd like to dedicate this award to Michael Gove and I mean dedicate in the Anglo Saxon sense which means insert roughly into the anus of." My hero, Mr Steer.
    • Penelope Penguin
    • By Penelope Penguin 18th Dec 08, 7:40 AM
    • 17,087 Posts
    • 132,754 Thanks
    Penelope Penguin
    So not only am I asking you can you still feed 1 mouth for £12.50 a week, but can you feed 3 mouths for £6.72 each a week.

    All and any help really appreciated.

    Many Thanks

    Originally posted by Nikkei
    You've got loads of really good tips here I'll add this to the current Grocery Challenge. Take a look at the first couple of posts. The people on that thread really know how to save on groceries, and you should get loads of help to keep your spends to a level you're comfortable with

    Penny. x
    Sheep, pigs, hens and bees on our Teesdale smallholding
  • WelshWoofer
    Have made big pot of soup each weekend and wondering whether last Sundays will last until tomorrow...?(vegetarian). I'm sure in the old days they used to eat it for a week...(the soup is following the recipe from Asda's packet of Moroccan Seasoning - chickpeas, tomatoes, spices, soya beans, coriander - delicious)

    Originally posted by sparklymessygirl
    Hi Sparkly
    Your soup sounds yummy - could you post the recipe please?
    January grocery spending - £82.73/ £120
    • gailey
    • By gailey 18th Dec 08, 9:56 AM
    • 2,303 Posts
    • 17,249 Thanks
    Thankyou scotsaver for kind support an advice.

    Im feeling bit down at the moent as so far we spent £250 which is what i stupidly budgeted this month and are running out of fresh veg fridge looking bare againa nd cupboards need more basics like tinned tomatoes/pastas and rice ect.
    Our only well stocked thing is teh freezer thats lookijng full after iceland shop and got lots of frozen stuff including lots of veg and chips.
    We not got enough meat and still not got turkey which is stressing me out!
    Asda sounds good but none near without expensive bus journey unless i try get vespa started. I suggested goose but hubby not keen then we toyed with lamb and thourght no has to be turkey!
    Maybe we could buy turkey breasts? is that mad idea for just 2 adults and toddler?
    We still got 1 pack of mince in freezer but will need one more pack of mince and some chicken as will prob make big lasagne.

    Then theres the xmas trimmings this year we not got that hubbys missing and making me feel guilty so here goes

    who sells cheapest xmas pud? onbly has 2 be small as only hubby who likes it!

    Who sells cheapest xmas cake or is cheaper to make my own?

    My own mince pies worked out cheaper than shop brought my mum wants me to make some this weekend so tahts another £5
    need ingrediants for gingerbread and shortbread.

    So realisticaly setting new dec budget to more realistic £325

    We always used to go m&s for partfayre any ideas on cheap luxurious partyfood and nibbles that make oh feel less hard done by?

    Anyone else feeling that december is hardest due to all the xtras the family expect?

    I must stop watching xmas food specials like nigella and river cottage as they must spend small fortune on food!
    Last nite was watching willys christmas on c4 he had whole lamb for party oh said prob few hundred quid!
    He also had really nice large turkey made me bit sad and envious!

    Definatly saving food stamps next year so never caught out again.

    Wanted to do small new year party but that be more expense gues could do basic partyfayre.
    pad by xmas2010 £14,636.65/£20,000:
    Pay off as much as I can 2011 £15008.02/£15,000

    new grocery challenge £200/£250 feb

    KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON,Onwards and upward2013
  • mummy2mygirls
    hello everyone, well poped to aldi yeaterday got a few bits for £6.19 including a yummy 'big' viennetta for xmas day for me as i dont like xmas pud!! also went to market today spent a small fortune on chesse and cranberry sauce (£9.80) and also brought a massive lump of gammon to cook for over christmas and new year (£6.99) Got a lot for the money spent and im really happy with the budget so far this mth, we have loads in the fridge and freezer and only spent £126.63!! so doing great. i will however be spending lots over the next week ofcourse!!!!! Dh loves to go a bit mad at christmas so will have to try and calm him a little! Also will need to get some beers and wine in (not for me ofcourse, to busy growing baby again this christmas!!lol) so i know it will go up lots, but it makes me feel good for lowering the amount for GC in the new year!
    Might try and make some yummy mince pies today so if anybody has any good recepies for the pastry would love to hear them...
    GC: Nov: £60.22/£450 Oct: £338.48/£450, July: £363.05/£450, June £447.98/£500
    £2 savers No68: £104/£100

    mummy to: 8yr, 5yr, 3yr, 2yr, 1yr. No6 Due Mar 2013 My world.
  • Money saving Diva
    We not got enough meat and still not got turkey which is stressing me out!
    Asda sounds good but none near without expensive bus journey unless i try get vespa started. I suggested goose but hubby not keen then we toyed with lamb and thourght no has to be turkey!

    Hi honey

    Sorry you are so stressed. As for Turkey - a few weeks ago we went to Iceland and bought a 'Cook-from-frozen' Turkey crown. It was £6. You just put it in the oven for however long it says and out it comes, and it really is delicious! It would easily feed four people so you would have some left cold the next day. Might be an idea to give you both the turkey fix you need for Christmas day and yet won't break the bank!!

    I was really sceptical but I am a complete convert now and intend to buy another to keep in the freezer for the New Year, as I adore turkey!

    hugs to you honey

    To be frugal, you need to spend money wisely, simply spending less is not enough.
    If you can't handle me at my worst then you don't deserve me at my best...
    Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I will try again tomorrow.
    • the_cat
    • By the_cat 18th Dec 08, 11:07 AM
    • 2,075 Posts
    • 11,317 Thanks

    Do you like leg meat? IF so a (value) turkey leg would be an option at around £1.60

    Xmas pud - if only for one Sains do individual mini ones for £1.49. Probably avail in all the stores though
    • findingmyfeet
    • By findingmyfeet 18th Dec 08, 11:08 AM
    • 494 Posts
    • 5,666 Thanks
    morning everyone,
    in for an update, spend another £79.56 in Mr M, £6.55 ham joint in local butchers, £13.89 in iceland and £1 in greggs for 2 sausage rolls (couldnt resist i was feeling half starved..and they were nice.). So thats another £101.01 to add to my sig-do that shortly.
    Only need a bit of fresh f n v from aldi at the weekend and possibly cream and butter. Then im set until the new year, hopefully i will just make the budget.
    GAILEY- i have just bought a nice xmas cake in morrisons , its about 6 or so inches across(15cms? ish), decorated with icing and a sprig of holly cost me £2.99 and looks nice, i find it cheaper to do mince pies, jamtarts etc homemade. Lats year we had a hollybush (netto) xmas pud that was really nice but at my parents this year so not buying one. good luck.

    Hope everyone is doing well and xmas preps are well under way.
    see you all shortly
    sealed pot member no :435 2011- £306.68 2012-£304.36 2013- £387.44 2014 - £441.43 £482.30
  • Julimk
    Hi Gailey

    I don’t know what shops you have locally & I don’t need to get a turkey this year, but Somerfield were advertising half price Bernard Matthews ones & I’m pretty sure Mr T still had some frozen ones for £10.

    There are some party food things in Nigella’s Christmas that could be done fairly cheaply if you get the ‘value’ or equivalent of tortilla chips, cream cheese, smoked salmon trimmings etc. Mr T has cocktail sausages at £1 for 24, Ocean Spray cranberry sauce for £1 & Colemans’s horseradish sauce 2 for £1.

    Chilli Cheese Crostini (makes 100)

    350g cream cheese
    125ml sour cream
    2 tsp paprika
    30g jalapenos, finely chopped
    ½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
    200g pack tortilla chips

    Mix together the cream cheese & sour cream. Mix in the jalapenos, paprika & Worcestershire sauce. Spread on the tortilla chips.

    Smoked salmon soda breads (makes 30)

    225g smoked salmon
    100g crème fraiche
    50g horseradish sauce
    400g loaf brown soda bread or other wholemeal bread
    75g pickled red cabbage
    small bunch dill

    Mix together crème fraiche & horseradish. Cut 8-10 slices of bread into 3 or 4 bits. Spread with mix. Add ribbon of smoked salmon. Garnish with cabbage & dill.

    Cranberry & Soy glazed cocktail sausages (makes 50)

    50 cocktail sausages
    125ml sweet chilli sauce
    60ml cranberry sauce
    60ml soy sauce
    1 tblsp dark brown sugar
    juice of 1 clementine/Satsuma
    juice of 1 lime

    Heat oven to 200c/gas mark 6. Put sausages in roasting tin.
    Mix chilli, cranberry & soy sauces. Mix in sugar, clementine/Satsuma & lime juice.
    Pour over sausages, turning so evenly coated. Cook for 30-40 mins, turning half way.


    I had to do some grocery shopping, even though I was already over the budget. The 4 litres of milk I bought at the beginning of the week has gone & we were down to the last loo roll!

    As I was able to reduce my spend fairly easily the first 2 months I did the GC & have spent similar amounts this month & last month (I didn’t need to ‘do’ Christmas), I clearly was spending more than I needed to & am now at a reasonable level. Will have to try some new strategies in the New Year to see if it is possible to bring it down further or will have to accept £120 a month will be it.

    That should now be it until after Christmas. Well here’s hoping!
    Last edited by Julimk; 18-12-2008 at 11:34 AM.
    • Moniker
    • By Moniker 18th Dec 08, 1:37 PM
    • 626 Posts
    • 9,607 Thanks
    Hi everyone, here I am for my usual Thursday update ( not next week though as I shall be serving the Christmas lunch by this time next week!). Have got quite a few things on my 'Christmas' food list, including two large free range chickens from Sainsbury's safely tucked up in the freezer, the stuffing, bacon rolls, sherry, crisps and cheese biscuits. DD1 is getting the cheese from the market on her way here on Tues - I am budgeting £15 for this as we eat a lot and are not having any pud (just ice-cream and hm chocolate sauce). I will have to buy the milk, cream and fruit and veg on Tuesday or Weds, but apart from that I am feeling happy that I have enough to feed the 7 of us without too much waste! I have updated my signature and I am still comfortably under budget with just over £100 to spend, plus I have had 12 NSD so far this month.

    Out of interest I looked at my spreadsheet for last December when my budget was £500 - and I spent all but about £2 of that and only had 4 of us here for Christmas - though I did do a big family lunch on New Year's day. I am very pleased that with the help of all you guys I have managed to reduce my expenditure by so much. Even if I do go over budget (which I am determined won't happen!) I will still be well under last years' spend.

    Just a quick query - I am hoping to make my own croissants with the help of my breadmaker - and my recipe is an old one which uses fresh yeast. I have manged to buy some from Sainsbury's but have only ever used dried yeast before. Have any of you seasoned bread makers got any tips for how much to use and when to mix it in when using the bm? My recipe uses 500gms flour and 15gms fresh yeast. Thanks in advance.

    Hope you are all managing to stay sane and solvent!

    Love Moniker
    • gailey
    • By gailey 18th Dec 08, 6:33 PM
    • 2,303 Posts
    • 17,249 Thanks
    Thanks everyone will head off2morrisions 4cake
    got xmas pud mini from co-op 99p!
    Moniker you having chicken instead of turkey?
    As im contempeplating tnat as could afford gammon joint or some lamb then as well.
    pad by xmas2010 £14,636.65/£20,000:
    Pay off as much as I can 2011 £15008.02/£15,000

    new grocery challenge £200/£250 feb

    KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON,Onwards and upward2013
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