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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 23rd Feb 10, 4:24 PM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    March 2010 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 23rd Feb 10, 4:24 PM
    March 2010 Grocery Challenge 23rd Feb 10 at 4:24 PM
    Hello everyone,

    Welcome to the third Grocery Challenge of 2010.

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your February budget, then keep on posting in the February 2010 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.

    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 on this thread.

    For the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #4 and #5 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month!
    Last edited by Pink.; 28-02-2010 at 8:01 PM.
Page 20
    • Sunnyday
    • By Sunnyday 8th Mar 10, 4:58 PM
    • 3,892 Posts
    • 34,008 Thanks
    i went into mr s today and spent 13.15 as i had to get ingrediants for green thai curry that im doing in the slow cooker, it would have been a lot cheaper for me to get the sains own jar sauce than to make it all from scratch. there only 1 each!! still never mind i may do that next time
    Originally posted by guccigoo
    Which recipe are you using and how many mouths are you feeding if you don`t mind me asking

    I make this quite often but the price of the ingredients has never been as high. If you have some ingredients left over it should bring down the price for next time that you make it.

    Planning on starting the GC again soon
  • aliadds
    we are feeding 2 adults and 2 dogs and also 1 cat for less than 40 per week. I budget for 40 but over time it works out at a bit less so it seems as if you are similar to us. Our dogs are big eaters too and it seems to work out just right

    Good luck

    Originally posted by Sunnyday
    Thanks Sunnyday...reassuring to know that I'm on the right track.
    I've spent another 4.20 today on fresh fruit. We do eat lots of fruit and I find that accounts for quite a bit of the budget!
    Less is more
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 8th Mar 10, 5:19 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    You are so right-it is important that unless out of necessity that we set out budgets to our own comfort zone and don't deprive ourselves or our families of essential nutrients. Myself though I still find that the fruit and veg along with other "real" foods are cheaper than buying convenience foods. Sometimes cooking a meal from scratch is more expensive than buying a jar of some sauce to add to your meat. The ingredients you use yourself are far better and more filling though and you know what you are eating. If planned properly you will most likely get more servings or some spare homemade sauce to freeze.

    Good Morning,

    Please sign me up!

    This seems like a great idea- currently I spend around 150 on my tesco online shop (and a little more on fresh bits in between- say 40). I'd like to get my tesco shop down to 140 this month, in view of decreasing 10 a month until 100. There are only two of us so this should be acheivable. I will be keeping the 'fresh bits' at 40 as this is fruit and veg mainly and I dont think it would be healthy to cut down on. Hopefully come summer this will decrease anyway due to the lovely veggies growing in the lotty!!

    Thanks very much
    Originally posted by emilyka
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is 1500 pa 125 calendar month 28.84 pw for 3 adults
    • Linda32
    • By Linda32 8th Mar 10, 6:34 PM
    • 4,295 Posts
    • 9,426 Thanks
    Hello all,

    Late start but have kept all receipts, trying for 300.00 for the month

    Started 3rd March, to enable me to keep a track I'm surposed to do a weeks shopping in one go so I did one on 3rd March so should finish after I've done the weeks shopping on or around 24th March.

    I've had an idea of making a shopping list from my receipts this week/month so I can see if its worth buying in bulk or anything thats I buy on a small receipt, this means I've had to "nip to the shops" for something.

    So Far

    Sainsburys 38.82
    Tesco 24.66
    Co-op 24.04

    Total 87.52
    • Coxy11
    • By Coxy11 8th Mar 10, 6:44 PM
    • 2,300 Posts
    • 27,322 Thanks
    Hi everyone,

    A NSD yesterday and today only spent 2.43 in Sainsbugs on choc treats for the children after swimming, and some whoopsies:

    450g pack of casserole veg - 30p
    BGTY caesar salad - 30p
    200g diced onions - 20p

    All except the salad are in the freezer ready for use later in the week. Will save me some prep time at least.

    78% of my monthly budget spent so far, so think (hope) I will come in just on target. Need to make amends for last month!!

    You're all doing great - keep up the good work.

    Cross-stitch WIP #1: Collecting Shells by Nancy Cole
    Cross-stitch WIP #2: Pretty Little London by Satsuma Street
    • PennyGrabber
    • By PennyGrabber 8th Mar 10, 6:58 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 22,438 Thanks
    NSD for me today - still not managed to find the receipts from the weekend though. Must try harder!
    I like Coxy's idea of putting down the percentage spend - that way, we're all the same, so easier to compare who spends what at what time of the month, IYSWIM.

    However, if I were to put my %age for this month, I think I would be very embarrassed! I'll check it in a minute and edit it in.

    Nothing to do with this thread at all, but just found out this morning that I'm pregnant! Very happy with that, although bf goes away tomorrow for a while (he's in the RAF). Think my intake of fresh fruit and veg will go up now - i normally struggle to remember the 5 portions, but now i need to! Will have to accept that i'll go over this month, and up my budget next month. When i was pregnant with my son, i had a major craving for freshly squeezed orange juice with bits in (but not the cheap ones!!), so who knows what i'll crave this time - and how much it'll cost!

    Have a good evening all,

    PG x

    PS - seeing as how my budget is 100, the %age is really quite easy to work out! I make it about 86%, with only 50% of March gone! Hmm, maybe it is doable?!
    Last edited by PennyGrabber; 08-03-2010 at 7:00 PM. Reason: Adding in %ages
    Grocery challenge for family of three - me, dd(12) and ds(11), feeding dp 2 or 3 x a week too. Only food, not toiletries. Jan 87.97/100 Feb 0/100
    Frugal 2018 needed! Saving and NOT spending
    • Snow Angel
    • By Snow Angel 8th Mar 10, 7:16 PM
    • 654 Posts
    • 967 Thanks
    Snow Angel
    First of all...congratulations PennyGrabber on the exciting news

    I'm having a couple of pretty successful grocery days. Yesterday I made me and boyf mushroom stroganoff for dinner with half a pack of Mr Ts value mushrooms and some cream that needed using up with rice. Work lunch today was pasta with 2-4-1 pesto and leftover veggies and dinner tonight was a whoopsie 25p plaice fillet (bargain ) with mash potato and defrosted cauliflower cheese. So 25p on grocery budget spent in 2 days!
    • miss saveapenny
    • By miss saveapenny 8th Mar 10, 7:20 PM
    • 33 Posts
    • 199 Thanks
    miss saveapenny
    hi all, spent 138 out of 280 budget so far, which am quite pleased with as I work my month from the 25th to the 25th so nearly half way. I have to say this has been a great exercise for me as it makes you realise just what you can live on.
    Had a great risotto tonight, here is recipe if anybody is interested
    1 onion,2 cloves garlic, 6 rashers of chopped streaky bacon, 300g risotto rice, 1litre of veg stock, 100g frozen peas.
    Fry off chopped onion and bacon, add garlic, rice and stock reduce heat and cover, cook for 15-20 mins until rice is tender stir in peas for last few mins, season. serve sprinkled with parmesan.
    (I also added a few mushrooms as they needed using up and substituded some of stock for white wine as needed using up too)
    I would say it was a cheap & easy dish and went down a treat.
    good luck everyone, stay focused
    • scotdebs
    • By scotdebs 8th Mar 10, 9:14 PM
    • 563 Posts
    • 3,123 Thanks
    Congrats pennygrabber
    CC debt Aug 2018 50.2K
    CC debt Nov 2018 48.6K
    • peedie
    • By peedie 8th Mar 10, 9:48 PM
    • 127 Posts
    • 1,708 Thanks
    Many congrats pennygrabber.

    Have had a not to successful time on the budget front, aimed to spend 40 a week in Feb, all was going well till I hit sainsbugs then I think I over spent. not much about 35. The only time I went out with a card, so theres a lesson for me. I was religiously saving all recipts and had noted down all the odd and sods. Mum came round at the weekend and was 'helping' me to have a sought out and declutter....before I knew it she had chucked all the recipts on to the fire. I had not yet done my sums or looked to see were I might have gone wrong
    So will have to try again and aim for a spend of 40 a week. 31.40 spent so far
    Last edited by peedie; 08-03-2010 at 9:49 PM. Reason: cat on my lap is helping me type!
  • jackieglasgow

    I'm afraid I lost control of my spend last month and lost control of keeping tally, Can I rejoin this month for 300 again? I don't know how do-able this will be as we now have a dog in the family too, but I'll give it a go.

    Jackie X

    Oops Xmas tree is flylady isn't it? Never mind, I'll leave it in because it looks so pretty!
    Last edited by jackieglasgow; 09-03-2010 at 7:19 AM. Reason: I am a doofus
    It's what is inside your head that matters in life - not what's outside your window
    Originally posted by mardatha
    Every worthwhile accomplishment, big or little, has its stages of drudgery and triumph; a beginning, a struggle and a victory. - Ghandi
    • Kornishkat
    • By Kornishkat 9th Mar 10, 7:41 AM
    • 83 Posts
    • 1,561 Thanks
    LOL Jackie, I always forget the tree on Flylady oops. Everyone's seems to be doing well so far. Congratulations Pennygrabber best of luck for a happy healthy pregnancy! Sunnyday what recipe do you use for Grren Thai Curry and is it spicy? I'm going to work out my percentage spending too as I like that idea

    I spent 64.40 on my delivery from Mr T & then went to Mr M for my fruit & veg which would have come to 19.56 but with vouchers came to 4.06. I'm only counting the price after vouchers because I don't count my Healthy Start Vouhers in my income on my budget. I might change that next month so I class vouchers as income and then adjust my grocery budget a little so I up it a little but not enought to include the vouchers completely (if that makes sense) that way I might shave a couple more pounds of my spending. So spending yesterday was 68.10

    (That makes 45% spent with only 1/4 of March gone)
    Last edited by Kornishkat; 09-03-2010 at 7:43 AM. Reason: % spend
    Back on the money saving wagon again!
  • huxley
    Hi all hope everyone is doing well a very late update,everything is going pete tong here but trying to keep on top of grocery challenge. 452.50 spent by the end of feb so a little over must keep on track so many bills so little money heres hoping for a good month for everyone
  • Keiss 21
    Congratulations PennyGrabber wow, how exciting!!

    Today will probably not be an NSD...DS2 has run out of Tesco's glucose drink (no-one said more was needed yesterday ) he needs it when he goes hypo (he's diabetic), which has been more often recently since he upped his exercise (he must reduce his insulin, hopefully he will remember today!). So I am afraid that it is a MUST HAVE and can't wait until no NSD today methinks! Ofcourse...he could alwaye buy some himself.......not that he will ofcourse!

    Have a great day everyone.

    Ooh, think the percentage idea is a good one, off to do it now
    Last edited by Keiss 21; 09-03-2010 at 7:55 AM. Reason: Adding comment

    13 projects in 2013: 7/13
    Cross-stitch Club Member no 13
    Weight loss since 24/06/2012: 30lb
  • rosieben
    Keiss, huge congraulations to your son, you must be so proud!

    Congratulations PennyGrabber, another GC baby for us

    miss saveapenny, thanks for the 'Easy Risotto with bacon and peas' recipe it's now in the front page index

    emilyka - welcome to the GC MrsMc will be along to add you to the front page list soon, good luck with your first challenge!

    I'm expecting a sainsbugs del today, just a small one, and then hope not to spend on anything except fruit and veg for the next few weeks

    have a good day everyone!
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
  • 83rachel

    Nothing to do with this thread at all, but just found out this morning that I'm pregnant! Very happy with that, although bf goes away tomorrow for a while (he's in the RAF). Think my intake of fresh fruit and veg will go up now - i normally struggle to remember the 5 portions, but now i need to! Will have to accept that i'll go over this month, and up my budget next month. When i was pregnant with my son, i had a major craving for freshly squeezed orange juice with bits in (but not the cheap ones!!), so who knows what i'll crave this time - and how much it'll cost!

    Have a good evening all,
    Originally posted by PennyGrabber
    congratulations I havent caught up yet but will edit the post accordingly

    • scotdebs
    • By scotdebs 9th Mar 10, 9:04 AM
    • 563 Posts
    • 3,123 Thanks
    well today will not be a NSD as i hoped as we have run out of weetabix - however in my new thrifty style I am going to try MrAs own brand (I bought own brand mayo and mustard last week - that is a big change for me) I think I will get Ds2s Aptamil milk while i am there which removes any need for me to go to the shops later in the week and therefore hopefully any further temptation
    CC debt Aug 2018 50.2K
    CC debt Nov 2018 48.6K
  • poppy-glos
    was going to be a nsd yesterday but i needed cash to pay a bill, and the cashpoint wasn't giving out cash!. went for a wander round mr t, ended up buying tonnes of fresh veg and some curry ingredients and further 15 spent! only 12.50 left in my notional budget til sunday night to eek out the money so i don't go over this month. I have very little lunchbox stuff in so am going to see what i can bake and find rather than going back to mr t for bread, fresh fruit and sandwich meat!

    40% of my budget spent and only 25% of my month gone.... need to do the meal planning,, storecupboard challenge, only buy what i need for today, and stop entertaining myself by spending money/visiting the shops...
    nov grocery challenge, .227.69/300, 9/25 nsd: , 7 Cmo, 10 egm.
    Me, 10 yo dd, and the dog. all food and drinks, in and out, plus household shopping.
    • XSpender
    • By XSpender 9th Mar 10, 10:00 AM
    • 3,348 Posts
    • 34,483 Thanks
    Congratulations PennyGrabber!

    I took DH to work this morning and nipped in to Asd@ on the way home to get some of the 1 nappies but the shelf was bare The lady who served me admitted she had bought the last 2 packets when she arrived that morning and they had not had any more delivered so far. I don't shop there normally so won't be making another trip to get any. I did get some other baby bits but these are out of a different budget.

    Treated myself to some of my favourite sweeties for later and a choc croissant for breakfast so 1.14 to add to the total.
  • elizabunny
    Morning All!

    Congratulations pennygrabber!

    I need to have a few NSDs really as I have spent too much of my annual GCB, I am beginning to think I have set it too low this year, but I'm not going to change it yet as it may even out during the summer. I have some tiny Leeks peeping through the soil but no tomatoes or cucumbers yet -it's just too cold.

    HM Chilli Con Carnie for dinner tonight and some sort of healthy pud as I feel the need to get a bit fitterLi*l have 4 tins of branston beans on offer for 89p at the moment HTH someone, it certainly helped me.

    Have a good day everyone and keep up the good work!
    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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