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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 26th Dec 08, 11:15 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    January 2009 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 26th Dec 08, 11:15 AM
    January 2009 Grocery Challenge 26th Dec 08 at 11:15 AM
    Hello everyone,

    Welcome to the first Grocery Challenge of 2009.

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your December budget, then keep on posting in the December 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
    For guidelines on posting in this thread please read the second post in this thread.

    For everyone's targets and totals for the month please read posts #3 and #4 on this thread.

    For the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #5 and #6 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month and can I take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy New Year.

    Last edited by Pink.; 28-12-2008 at 12:18 PM.
Page 71
    • meanmarie
    • By meanmarie 17th Jan 09, 12:37 PM
    • 5,135 Posts
    • 49,952 Thanks
    Spent 111 this morning, but have everything I need for at least next week...there will be stuff over after that...only thing I couldn't get was Lidl DW tabs, they didn't have any, not going anywhere else just for one thing as I will only spend money I don't need to. Have now spent around 236 so still have 66 left if I need to spend more, will see how it goes...have decided that if there is any surplus I will put it towards something I want in the kitchen...

    Weight 08 February 86kg
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 17th Jan 09, 12:44 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    I generally buy the granular dishwasher powder in lidl-or wherever its selling for 3.99. This generally lasts most of the year! I do need to put some in a tub with a spoon tho as the lid is awkward for me and the kids tend to just "tip it in". 2 teaspoons is enough-so that is one of todays jobs. The allinone d/w tabs are a con as you still need salt and rinseaid for a decent finish while paying 4 times as much afor them!
    Have cooked and mashed my swede now-tubbed up ready for freezer. Now I need to cook up all of the parsnips too or they will go to waste. Freezer chooocco but somehow I will get them in!
    May pop out to get a paper soon as DH wants a tv paper so Im now going to look and see whe newspapers thread-see if any of them have vouchers in! Can also drop off my plastic for recycling at waitrose and use any vouchers there although Im only taking 10 with me just in case Im tempted!
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is 1500 pa 125 calendar month 28.84 pw for 3 adults
  • gillst
    Flaked rice-the best place years ago was Co-op-not sure if thats still the case but health food shops is the only other hope?

    Cheap washing up liquid people ask for-again-Co-op is the only place Ive found any all of last year! 19p at present. I buy 4 at a time.
    Originally posted by angelatgraceland
    Well and truly over budget for the month now, as I have just spent another 20 (looking for flaked rice). Went to the co-op, none there, but ended up spending 6 on cappucino coffees, milk, tinned custard and tinned rice. (both half price, so cheaper than making my own taking into account the cost of the milk.) I bought two boxes of cappucino coffees (10 sachets in each) for 3.00 so this is only 15p a mug. Again cheaper than making milky coffees, which we like every now and again.

    Tried our local Budgens for the flaked rice, but no luck there either. Ended up spending 12 in there as they had four chicken breasts for 3, so bought two packs of them, 8 tins of baked beans - still on offer at 4 for 1, toilet rolls - half price 4 for 1, and some half price curry sauces, and tuna.

    Didn't get what I started out for this morning, but have more for the stockpile that is building - much to DHs annoyance.

    Will try the health food shop for flaked rice during the week and just hope they have got it and I don't end up spending extra in there as well.

    Pay day on Monday, so will declare final amout I have spent then - just off to update my sig (holding my head in shame)
  • Cazzdevil
    I'm kind of doing alright, I set myself a (potentially unrealistic) budget of 100 for the month for me, OH, pooch & puss to include all toiletries and household products. I've tried doing the grocery challenges before but always forget to keep a record of the bits and bobs so this time I've put a typed tally chart on the fridge and everything gets written on it.

    We're up to just under 80 and only just halfway through the month but we've got plenty of stuff in the cupboards and freezer to last us easily another week, probably longer. I reckon 120's going to be the magic number for us but we'll see.
    • Lizzieanne
    • By Lizzieanne 17th Jan 09, 1:56 PM
    • 477 Posts
    • 1,097 Thanks
    Everytime I look at this thread there's pages more to read!

    I seem to be doing ok at the moment. The freezer is full and I keep having to resist the urge to buy more stuff that we don't need. I have a sort of 'siege mentality'!
    Mortgage Free as of 03/07/2017
  • scotsaver
    Just updated my total, making Marmalade today so had to pick up a lemon and some more sugar, in Lidl's they only had a bag of 4 lemons but they are marked down at 55p at the moment, will only need to use 1 for the Marmalade and then tomorrow I shall make some Lemon Curd with 2 of the lemons and then the 4th Lemon I shall use to make MRSMC's Lemon Potatoes.

    Dinner tonight is Liver & Bacon casserole, loads of mash, peas & sweetcorn.
    Hope you are all having a great weekend.
    GC for OH, myself, DD18 & DD16 includes Toiletries, cleaning stuff & Food.

    • Sylvan
    • By Sylvan 17th Jan 09, 2:19 PM
    • 344 Posts
    • 2,090 Thanks
    It's a good thing I don't mind cloudy olive oil! They must have put my olive oil next to my frozen food in Mr A's van. It looks awful:rolleyes:
    I spent 101.96 to get the free delivery but I'll have to go in tomorrow anyway because the lemons were manky and the pop-up button on the jar of lemongrass pops up.
    That's the trouble with deliveries - they don't take care of what they're choosing. One of the packs of happy chicken portions was use by yesterday, as was one of the packs of sausages, so I had to freeze both packs of each, since I wasn't planning to use either of them till tomorrow at least.

    OH will have to go into Mr T's as well - we bought those packets of grated cheese since they were cheaper than the savers cheese we normally buy, but, even though they're best before 8th Feb, 2 of them have gone mouldy. (DS5 says they taste stale anyway but I think that's just the added potato starch he can taste). Sigh!

    Off to update my signature, though doubtless I'll be doing it again tomorrow and yet again on Monday!
    Time flies like an arrow.
    Fruit flies like a banana.
    Money talks, but chocolate SINGS

    "I used to be snow white but I drifted" (A seasonal quote from the incomparable Miss West)
  • jtb2412
    Had a small spend here today, needed some cream for the leek and potato soup (could have managed without it but hey ho, it's nicer with ) - recipe for those that want it (really easy !):

    4 leeks halved and chopped finely
    2 medium sized potatoes
    2oz butter
    2 medium onions
    1 1/2 pints veg stock
    285 ml milk
    salt and pepper
    chives or parsley and cream to garnish

    Melt butter in large pan and sweat off leeks, potato and onions for about 15 mins. Add stock and milk and let simmer for 20-30 mins. Blitz up, add chopped chives/parsley, add a swirl of cream .... yum !

    Had this for lunch and it was divine ! Used up a bit of home-made bread too that was slightly stale (cut into large chunks and fried in a little olive oil and made croutons with it - was being posh today ).

    Having a bit of a naughty dinner tonight - sausage, egg, chips (potatoes sliced and baked in oven in a little oil) and beans .

    Still doing ok here and i've got about 110 to last me until 31st Jan (although i've currently got enough food in to last until this time next week). Really hoping to come in under budget so anything left over will be used to stockpile and bring down the budget later in the year.

    Have popped a few lettuce seeds (winter variety) in the greenhouse today so hopefully they'll show their little heads very soon. Can't believe the price of cucumbers lately ! Just glad i'm growing my own again.

    Happy days !

    Will probably not post for a few days now as hopefully I won't be going shopping . I'll be reading though and taking notes - have a great weekend everyone xx
    Last edited by jtb2412; 17-01-2009 at 2:39 PM.
    Weight loss to date 1st 11.5lb
  • Sunny Donny
    Hi All
    Did the trip into town and hit Iceland/Tesco and Sainsbugs.
    Total shopping 13.92 and that includes fruit and veg.
    Bargain hunted and whoopsied big style!!
    Still lots in the freezer so will try to buy milk and bread only this week.
    OH cooking teas as I type so off to sample!!!!
    Mortgage free as at 1/9/13
    To start work on the credit cards now!!
    • msgnomey
    • By msgnomey 17th Jan 09, 3:36 PM
    • 1,605 Posts
    • 26,365 Thanks
    not doing too badly so far this month did a big shop last weekend so should only need a top-up shop tomorrow as there is plenty in the freezer!
    Go hopefully into each new day, enjoy something from every day no matter how small, you never know when it will be your last
    • Barneysmom
    • By Barneysmom 17th Jan 09, 3:58 PM
    • 9,470 Posts
    • 24,286 Thanks
    I did a 28.00 shop in Mr.M's the other day, 2 6-pinters, dog food, bread, eggs (what a price eggs are!), bacon and sausage and Flora Buttery as it was on offer.

    A good thing for us today, we were walking the dogs round the reser and hubby found a fiver on the ground. There was nobody around who might have lost it so we stopped at Tesco Express on the way home and got sugar, a red pepper (75 for one!! ) mushrooms and a paper. We didn't buy the 3lb bag of flour as it was 1.62!!

    I'm sorry the person lost it but it would've rotted if we hadn't picked itup anyway, it was off the path.
    • goldfinch68
    • By goldfinch68 17th Jan 09, 4:19 PM
    • 205 Posts
    • 527 Thanks
    Rather than my usual spend of 10 a week on wine, have just been to Mr T's and bought their own brand of Malibu for 5 to have with diet coke instead which should hopefully last a lot longer! Wanted Jack Daniels but at 18 a bottle, couldn't justify it! Been at work today so will be spending my Saturday evening trawling through my cookbooks to plan cheap meals for the week. Looking forward to seeing just how much I can save this month to put towards our holiday. Even dusted off the breadmachine and made a loaf, tastes so much better than shop bought stuff. Anyone actually worked out if it is cheaper to make at home rather than buy. Certainly got to be better for you?!
    Slimming World: SD: 2.05.16 SW: 13st10lb
    Goal: 11st 10lb by my birthday in August

    • redmel1621
    • By redmel1621 17th Jan 09, 4:38 PM
    • 5,978 Posts
    • 25,841 Thanks
    Well I don't think I am going to make it, esp as I have to get to 7th Feb and had to start on 1st Jan!!!

    Had to get some dog food, although I am going to bulk buy from petplanet in future as it works out a lot cheaper from them. I did used to use them and they are reliable.

    We seem to have spent a fortune on luxuries lately, but really it has either come out of dh moey or the kids money, so my budget isn't exactly blown...although it is hard to distinguish what I have spent and what I haven't. I did spend 6 on 2xboots meal deals yesterday which I paid for out of the food money. The dog food along with a few little bits cost 5.37.....

    And we will need milk tomorrow, which I may try to get dh to go on his own to get as he will just buy the milk

    Off to update sig now.

    Mel x
    Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
    Nothing is going to get better. It's not.

    • tessie bear
    • By tessie bear 17th Jan 09, 4:44 PM
    • 4,361 Posts
    • 30,013 Thanks
    tessie bear excited as i have marmalade cooking in the kitchen and it smells is wafting from the kitchen all the was through the dining room in to the conservatory...i got the seville oranges from tesco but cant remember how much they were...its odd how such manky looking oranges make such a nice thing as marmalade(i suppose 4lb of sugar helps ) we were supposed to be having a roast chicken meal with all the trimmings tonite but the chicken didnt want to play and hadnt defrosted so it changed to meat balls (mix mince an egg some herbs s and p) shape fry a bit and then bake with loaded potato skins....lots of leftovers used up.....roast chicken for tomorrow......i was very money saving at the swimming lesson today i scooped up a handful of christmas chocolate into a plastic bay and the kids had that....a small bar of galaxy chocolate was 80p (didnt buy)...dont sound much but for x2 kids 50 weeks a year it is in not far from 100 which made me think what else do i waste that i could save ??...tata im off to make a list.........have a nice evening tess
    • Pips Mum
    • By Pips Mum 17th Jan 09, 4:59 PM
    • 2,834 Posts
    • 15,330 Thanks
    Pips Mum
    Its official I am giving up this month!!!
    Despite my best efforts pre-baby to freeze meals and be organised, I have already had 2 trips to tesco this week both totalling about 50!!
    I will be back next month, hopefully a little bit more in a routine as baby will be nearly 3 weeks old by then.
    Good luck to everyone else, keep going!!
    Debt at LBM 17,544 4111
    Over 14,000 PAID OFF

    Thank you to everyone who posts bargains on here it's helped me save a fortune for my Family
    • Maisie M
    • By Maisie M 17th Jan 09, 5:02 PM
    • 1,520 Posts
    • 14,557 Thanks
    Maisie M
    spent 10 in M&S on one of their dine in night offers but got a huge paella (which I love) it will do me tomorrow nights dinner and Monday's lunch, some roasted parsnips which I have chucked in the freezer for a day when we ara having a roast, bottle of wine which I've popped in my booze cupboard as am on my own tonight as OH has a really bad cold and isn't coming over this weekend and a huge mountain of profiteroles which me and DS have eaten 6 of for pud. There are still quite a few left so reckon they will do Sunday and Monday as well

    Made a steak pie filling today and used some for tea tonight with 1/4 of a puff pastry block, mash, red cabbage and peas. Have two portions of steak pie filling and the other 3 1/4 pieces of puff pastry for the freezer. Have made a huge pan of red cabbage and have loads for the freezer. Also made some brocollie soup and use the stalks in it and it made a really thick soup so have that to go in the freezer as well. Just as well we ate some snack from the freezer to make way for all this food!!!

    Anyway have gone over my Grocery Budget but will allow myself a further 20 this month as its the first time I am doing this and maybe underestimated what we needed.

    Have a good rest of the weekend all. The weather is cooking up a storm here so time to batten down the hatches

  • Le Foot
    Goodevening everyone,
    Looks like I'm gonna be well in budget this month . Any left over will be converted into extro 's for our coming holiday of a week in Tenerife. ( 5 weeks yesterday..not that I'm counting ) With the being so poor against the , we shall need all the extras we can get. Still, we are going self catering, so we will be able to keep costs down to a minimum...its only for the sunshine we going..not to be pampered.
    With a bit of luck and a lot of planning, I'm hoping to 'squirrel away' 50 out of this month's budget.
    Congrats to all of you doing well, and 'never mind'..there's always next month, to those who are struggling.
    Love to all....keep the faith.
    Feb. G.C. From Jan 26th 350.00
    First month..pure guess!! Wk. 1 136.38 balance 213.62. Wk.2 108.10p balance 105.52
  • rosieben
    I've only just discovered this thread and would like to join the Grocery Challenge 2009, hope I'm not too late!
    ...Off to read the wealth of advice and tips on here. Thanks everyone!
    Originally posted by goldfinch68
    Hi goldfinch, welcome to the GC! MrsMC will be along in a while to add you to the 'register' on page one.

    my tv and pc just went off as the elec flickered. Keep safe in these winds everyone!
    Last edited by rosieben; 17-01-2009 at 6:55 PM.
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
  • fallen angel shelley
    MrsMc- I have just taken the lemon potatoes out of the oven and had a taste of one and all I can say is, yummmmmmmmmmmmmy. I will be making them again. only thing is i'm not hungry after cooking, so i'm going to wait abit and them have some more with the moussaka.

    My trip to MrT's ended up costing me 22.44p, I must of worked it out wrong when I did my list:confused:, but I shouldn't need much else until the middle of the week:rolleyes:.

    Shelley x

    Back on MSE again! to take control of my finances and not let it control me. May grocery challenge 41.96/140
  • elizabunny
    Evening everyone, not such a good day today, I spent 16.48 in Mr L and 1.74 in Mr C, now that wouldn't have been too bad, if I had managed to buy more meat, but only got 400gm minced steak. On the plus side I bought loads of veggies, -Potatoes, Onions, Carrots, Parsnips, Celeriac, B Sprouts , Swede and Celery. Also got Bananas, Milk, Fromage Frais, 10 Eggs, Cereal, Bread Flour x 2 which has gone up a WHOPPING 27p per bag -what on earth is going on??? Plain flour, Baking Powder, Orange Juice, Tinned Tomatoes, 30m roll foil and finally 2 naughty pasties for a quickie dinner tonight and some 'whoopsie' cream which I have turned into butter (my first go at this).

    We had 2 lovely surprise visitors last night, DS2 & his OH who stopped off on their way back from a short break in Wales. So had to hit the freezer a bit for dinner last night -HM Soup, 2 extra HM Fish Pies and Apple Cobbler. Also managed to polish off a jar of olives, pkt of Brie, for nibbles and some left over xmas choccies and for brekkie today -Cereal, Orange juice, Eggs, Sausage Beans and Croissants and best part of a HM loaf. The good thing was, if I'd have known they were coming and planned for it, I would have definately HIT the shops and bought bacon -which they didn't seem to miss, mushrooms, more cereal, wine, beer, etc. etc and probably would have spent another 30. We just made do with what we had in.

    Even managed to send DS2 home with 3 HM frozen Meals, 1 HM frozen pudding, 2 knock down price tins of baked beans, tin of tuna, jar of beef paste, carton of brandy sauce, some HM Scones and a jar of pickled quails eggs -you should have seen his face when I gave him those.

    So now I need to start stocking up again -for that next surprise visit. I love it when DS1 & DS2 pop home -even now they are grown up and have lived away for a long time now -we still miss them all over again when they come home and then leave -it must be empty nest syndrome.

    Hope everyone's ok in this bad weather. Will update my signature now ......but it's looking a bit grim:rolleyes2
    Sealed Pot Challenge 7 Member 022
    5:2 Diet started 28/1/2013 only 13lbs lost due to Xmas 2013 blip.
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