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  • FIRST POST
    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 24th Jun 10, 11:32 PM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    Pink.
    • #1
    • 24th Jun 10, 11:32 PM
    24th Jun 10 at 11:32 PM
    Hello everyone,

    Welcome to the seventh Grocery Challenge of 2010.

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


    Wishing you all a great Moneysaving Month!

    Pink
    Last edited by Pink.; 28-06-2010 at 9:56 PM.
Page 12
  • MRSMCAWBER
    Morning all

    Hello to all the newbies ...and my thoughts are with those having rough times

    Its 2 years today that my sis lost her battle with cancer -but it seems like yesterday that I was on here asking for someone to look after the list whilst we dashed back to be with her for her last few days -"where has that 2 years gone?"

    Anyway-back to the matter in hand... I will update the list in a moment folks -sorry for being slack ....



    I have spent 32 so far this month (starting 25th) -but hubby is away this week -so there will be no more spending before next Saturday . I did a freezer re-jig and list the other day ... here is the protein side of things
    • 4 bacon wrapped chicken breasts (1 syn)
    • 400g chicken fillets
    • 7 chicken breasts
    • 1 pack piri piri chicken kebabs (2syns in whole pack)
    • 2 turkey steaks
    • 2 lamb steaks
    • 2 pork steaks
    • 14 pork loin steaks
    • 1 pork escalope
    • 2 marinaded pork steaks (7 syns)
    • 500g chinese ribs (3syns per 100g)
    • 500g BBQ ribs (4syns per 100g)
    • 24 lincolnshire sausages (11syn per 2)
    • 24 pork n herb sausages (11syns per 2)
    • 18 pork n leek sausages (11 syns per 2)
    • 2 x 800g extra lean minced steak
    • 9 x 100g extra lean minced steak
    • 300g minute steaks
    • 6 beef escalops
    • 300g lean diced steak
    • 2 x 400g gyros
    • 4 gammon steaks (huge so 1 does 4 servings)
    • 2 pork joints
    • 2 brisket joints
    • 2 lamb shanks (1 does us both)
    • 1 pack sliced topside
    • 1 pack smoked ham
    • Prawn ring
    • 500g king prawns
    • 3 packs smoked salmon
    • 1 box plain cod
    • 1 box white fish
    • 2 salmon steaks
    • 1 tuna steak
    so I guess its safe to say I don't need any meat right now Im going to use the salmon and tuna whilst hubby is away as he isn't keen on it anyway and then I can get a new bag of each
    Slimming World is still going great -another 4lb gone this week -so thats 40lbs in 11 weeks....still got *mumble mumble" stones to go mind ..but its so easy it is silly
    Last night I did "buffalo" chicken -it was gorgeous ..and even nicer cold -so I will be doing that again for hubby to have on his salads for work -will make a change....
    Tonight is going to be lamb with minted gravy, home made yorkshire pudding and veggies mmmmmmmm
    Right thats enouth jabber from me..
    Hope everyone has a good day..
    off to update the list.....
    -6 -8 -3 -1.5 -2.5 -3 -1.5-3.5
    • cw18
    • By cw18 4th Jul 10, 8:48 AM
    • 8,081 Posts
    • 86,080 Thanks
    cw18
    .....can any one think of any other ways of saying our food budget is for three not six+
    Originally posted by muffin man 7
    Don't know how old your son is, but based on the age of your daughter I'm guessing he's old enough to understand basic finances (even if he's younger), so I'd just try explaining to them in simple/basic terms.

    I had a spell - when mine were (much) younger than they are now - when I cut down on spending on specific items they kept helping themselves to (crisps, pop, ice cream, ice lollies, chocolate, sweets), and I just sat them down and explained that what I'd bought was all that was coming into the house for xxx days/weeks - and that once it was gone it was gone. They were also told that if one of them was seen taking more than their fair share they'd not be allowed any from the next lot, and if one were merely suspected of having more than their share they'd all be monitored and/or lose out.


    Since my income dropped drastically on a permanent basis (at which point I only had my youngest at home, and he was just turned 17), my lad has grumbled a few times about some of the 'cheapy' meals I've cooked (especially those that started to turn up regularly). But once I gave him a brief overview of my budgets (he still doesn't know exactly what I have coming in/going out) he quickly realised that having these cheapy meals meant I could then afford to do some of the dearer meals he really likes on a 'reasonably regular' basis -- instead of once or twice a year. (Just a shame he can't/won't understand we don't have access to a personal cow, as his milk consumption is the single biggest spend item from my budget every month!!)


    So if I were in your shoes I'd be very tempted to say that whatever squash/snacks etc you have in are to last until xxxxxx, and if they go sooner (due to being raided by unexpected visitors) then you won't be replenishing them before that date anyway - so they'll then find themselves in the position where they want friends over but can't offer them any 'treats'. I find embarrassement over things like this can soon change a childs habits/make them more considerate
    Cheryl
    • cw18
    • By cw18 4th Jul 10, 8:53 AM
    • 8,081 Posts
    • 86,080 Thanks
    cw18
    Its 2 years today that my sis lost her battle with cancer
    Originally posted by MRSMCAWBER
    Sending you ((hugs)), and keeping you in my thoughts today.


    I couldn't believe it's 2 years already, but then I counted my own personal dates and we're coming up to the 2 year mark (Nov) as well, Frightening how time flies
    Cheryl
    • guccigoo
    • By guccigoo 4th Jul 10, 9:33 AM
    • 467 Posts
    • 5,112 Thanks
    guccigoo
    MRS MC big hugs sent your way, i know how you feel as it will be 6 yrs in August that my sis also passed away with cancer . Like you say it goes so quick and only seems like yesterday. (((((( hugs )))))) to you.
    I will lose 2 stone by this summer!!!!!!
    • Courgette
    • By Courgette 4th Jul 10, 9:58 AM
    • 1,755 Posts
    • 18,581 Thanks
    Courgette
    Morning, we went berry picking yesterday so have a fridge full of strawberries and raspberries, nom nom nom. They did cost 14 though I was gonna take this out of the fun budget cos it was such good fun to do, a real memory for DS but I guess it's food so onto the grocery budget it goes. So those, along with some cream and some milk and a couple of other bits means I've spent 17.69 so far for July whch is fine I think.

    Not sure if people saw in the newsletter that Morrisons have a 5 off voucher in the Sun this week. It will unfortunately involve buying that awful newspaper but it's only 20p and you can always burn it/use it as loo roll afterwards . Monday's gives 5 off a 40 spend this week, Tuesday is for the week after and so on for the week.

    Hope that helps someone, I'll certainly be going round with a calculator one day this week
    A reminder to myself: Persistence Pays Off
    Mortgage 1: 95,000 78,900 at 3.1%
    Mortgage 2 (BTL): 83, 489.15 at 2.99% (I.O.)
    Savings (S&S ISA): 3000 Plus 6 months emergency savings earning 3%
    • hex2
    • By hex2 4th Jul 10, 10:13 AM
    • 4,722 Posts
    • 80,174 Thanks
    hex2
    Mrs M - huge hugs for you. Congratulations on the Slimming World stuff, it really does work.
    Hippiechiq - thankyou. My lot all have named snack boxes for snacky junk that I fill weekly, this was raiding packed lunch stuff. He knows I shop monthly and that I will simply not buy anymore but it isn't fair to anyone else. I will have to go back to storing everything in our wardrobe and putting it out weekly.

    We have been having some odd meals recently to try and clear the randiom bits out of the freezer. The brioche that had been lurking for over a year made two lovely bread and butter puddings. Last night we had a nice 'bungitin' dahl with the last scraps of a chicken and some old frozen naan breads. I need to keep making meals out of nothing, I need to accept that pasta (yuck) is cheap and is liked by everyone else, and that 6 eggs a day can make meals, not just cakes.
    'If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need' Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • highland fling
    Good morning everyone,
    very wet and windy today. So looks like the stew and dumplings meal may be served sooner than I had thought.
    Planning to make hm soup today. I also have a pack of peppers to use up. Would be grateful if anyone has a soup recipe that included them.
    Having pork and apple sauce for dinner. May make roast potatoes as a treat and I am using up random veg. Bought lovely Scottish strawberries yesterday for 1. So that will be an easy dessert.
    It takes a long time to eat an elephant and I'm doing it a bite at a time!!!
    • Sunnyday
    • By Sunnyday 4th Jul 10, 11:31 AM
    • 3,892 Posts
    • 34,008 Thanks
    Sunnyday
    Planning to make hm soup today. I also have a pack of peppers to use up. Would be grateful if anyone has a soup recipe that included them.
    Originally posted by highland fling
    Highland Fling i`ve just been and looked for my lentil soup recipe but can`t find it House is so disorganised atm and nothing is where it should be.

    I make red lentil soup, sometimes with bacon and sometimes with red peppers and its lovely.

    Roughly the recipe is 3 potatoes, two carrots,two small onions, either smoked bacon (couple of pieces) or red peppers (one is enough) or both if you`re feeling flush

    Fry off the onions and bacon, add to the chopped potato and wash a third of a bag of red lentils and add those. Finally add the pepper and fill the pan with water, season to taste, i usually add a small amount of paparika and cumin for taste and simmer until all the veg are soft.

    Cool until still warm and then blend with a hand mixer until smooth.

    I also make it in the slowcooker but if you do this chop the spuds until tiny as they take a while to cook in there.

    Bit of black pepper on the top and its lush, lovely thick and tasty soup.

    SD

    EDITED Added 2 Medium carrots to the ingredients
    Last edited by Sunnyday; 04-07-2010 at 9:15 PM.
    Planning on starting the GC again soon
    • muffin man 7
    • By muffin man 7 4th Jul 10, 11:37 AM
    • 742 Posts
    • 7,753 Thanks
    muffin man 7
    Thank you Cw18 thats a big help my son is 18 and has learning difficulties hes really good on computer but no good with money he seems to think it will last forever some days and others he gets it he can only have it if its in he never goes to his friends not since he got stabbed last year took months to get him past garden gate on his own so his friends are always here they also know im on here and that im trying to cut my spending but even that doesnt seem to work gona go for another nsd and try re organising kitchen maybe put an empy jar in with a label saying " To fill this cupboard you need to fill this jar all coins gratefully accepted"after all theyll only spend it at corner shop very pricey right off to find a jar small for now i think thank you i might even let them read this so they realise im not the only one with a tight budget
    • muffin man 7
    • By muffin man 7 4th Jul 10, 11:49 AM
    • 742 Posts
    • 7,753 Thanks
    muffin man 7
    Hex2 i used to hide all treats bics cereals in my room and had lock on door they still got in and stuff went missing when i asked who was guilty they all used to blame the 'ghost'our house make wierd noises at night so they used to raid the stash then so they thought i wouldnt hear them one day i decided to play them at their own game so i took stuff out of boxes carefully sealed them when i could and waited sure enough the five of them at the time raided empty boxes i went up to check on them and the look on their faces again i asked who was guilty and this time they said "not us" so i replied " oh it must of been the ghost" needless to say they didn't raid my stash again
    • recovering spendaholic
    • By recovering spendaholic 4th Jul 10, 12:30 PM
    • 3,049 Posts
    • 15,426 Thanks
    recovering spendaholic
    Hi everyone hope you are all okay. My thoughts are with those of you who are having a rough time ATM. Kirsty - I broke my wrist this time 2 years ago and once you get used to the cast it isn't too bad - it certainly didn't stop me doing most things, particularly after they put a lightweight cast on.

    Hippiechiq - well done on the "naming" thing. I also have kids who eat everything as soon as it comes into the house. My kids would take no notice of whose names were on stuff though - in fact they fight so much anyway that I think they would actually LIKE to p**s the others off by eating their named stuff - sometimes I could do with a UN peacekeeper

    Was hoping for a NSD today but came down this morning to find that DD1 (19) had come in at about 4am (I vaguely remember hearing the front door) with some friends after a night out and they had eaten all my bread, cheese, cereal and most of the milk so I will have to venture out to Tescos later on. Grrrrrrr!!!!!

    I like the idea of a laminated freezer list Nicola! I have a laminator somewhere so will dig it out!
    Jane

    ENDIS. Employed, no disposable income or savings!
    • muffin man 7
    • By muffin man 7 4th Jul 10, 12:41 PM
    • 742 Posts
    • 7,753 Thanks
    muffin man 7
    Recovering spendaholic why don't you get your dd1 to go to shop after all she is the reason you need a few things that way you keep your nsd and she might stop her early morning munching cos every time she raids the kitchen without asking you could say she got to replace stuf if she asks first and you say its ok then she might get the message my older ones never brought friends round cos their d d would moan he not here now just me youngest of boys and youngest girl im used to hectic i only asked mine i time they came back and i politely said thank you for getting the bread milk cereal i hadn't budgeted for .......funny never asked for money and always asked before getting something it might help hope so
    Last edited by muffin man 7; 04-07-2010 at 12:43 PM. Reason: sorry for my typing thing my double vision not helping
    • Kitchenbunny
    • By Kitchenbunny 4th Jul 10, 1:02 PM
    • 1,861 Posts
    • 20,260 Thanks
    Kitchenbunny
    Just popped to Mr T for some veggies (red peppers & a pack of mushrooms) and some multivitamins, and spent 6.19, taking my total so far to 11.72. So far I'm spending more than I'd hoped I'd have to, but in truth if I can get below 200 I won't be too disappointed. I'll update my signature now.

    Tea tonight will be a jar of Chinese hoi sin sauce that I found in the cupboard with some prawns bought on offer last month and some noodles. Which will be a nice and quick tea and one I'm looking forward to a lot.

    Highland Fling - I make a sweet potato and red pepper soup in the slow cooker by cooking some peeled and chopped sweet potatoes, a chopped red pepper or two, some garlic and herbs with some vegetable stock for 4-6 hours on low. It can then be blended to make a smooth soup or left chunky.

    HTH

    KB xx

    • freakyogre
    • By freakyogre 4th Jul 10, 1:46 PM
    • 1,454 Posts
    • 9,410 Thanks
    freakyogre
    Recovering spendaholic why don't you get your dd1 to go to shop after all she is the reason you need a few things
    Originally posted by muffin man 7
    I have to agree. I'd have kindly woken her up nice and early and sent her to the shop

    When I lived at home I never took advantage as knew we weren't made of money. My dad used to get coke (own brand ) etc with the weekly shop, but I knew it had to last until the next time.
    When I started working full time at around 18/19 I acquired my own cupboard in the kitchen and shelf in the fridge and anything extra that I wanted, I bought and it went in there.
    It worked well as I generally worked late, so I wouldn't eat meals with my dad and stepmum anyway, so I could just sort myself out when I got in and they weren't paying for my food.

    Er, to keep this on topic. Officially I haven't spent anything in July (the 5 was earlier in the week, but counted in July). I can highly recommend living on your own and being on crutches for a while for moneysaving!
    I'm off to the hospital for my foot to be re-dressed tomorrow and am hoping we can pop to a shop afterwards as I need a couple of bits.
    Grocery challenge - Nov: 52/100
    • poohspals
    • By poohspals 4th Jul 10, 2:05 PM
    • 453 Posts
    • 4,693 Thanks
    poohspals
    Please put me down for 200 for the month of July please. I withdrew 200 in cash for the whole month - for the first time I have done a "monthly" shop and will stock up each week on milk, bread, fruit and vegetables. I thought that by taking the cash out I can physically see how I am doing. After the big shop which included everything including cleaning products, loo rolls, toothpastes etc I have 65 so I am fairly positive I can stick to it.
    Last edited by poohspals; 04-07-2010 at 3:23 PM.
  • ~moneysavingnovice~
    First time I've posted in this section- can I join in the GC??

    Me, OH and our dog spend 350ish a month (includes cleaning, toiletries and my lunches to take to work). We do a big shop once a week at Mr S. If we pop to the shop at the end of the road for alcohol/snacky bits it goes in another budget called 'other food/drinks&sundries' which normally gets up to 100 a month.

    Determined to get Mr S monthly budget down to 300 and other/sundries budget down to 50.

    Me and OH are in the process of buying our 1st house so we really must watch the pennies! Plus he works on commission so income is really variable.

    We both work full time and long hours so rely a lot on ready meals and packaged foods- any tips for how to prep at the weekend for quick and easy meals to eat in the week??

    Thanks!
    Last edited by ~moneysavingnovice~; 04-07-2010 at 3:10 PM.
    • cw18
    • By cw18 4th Jul 10, 3:11 PM
    • 8,081 Posts
    • 86,080 Thanks
    cw18
    any tips for how to prep at the weekend for quick and easy meals to eat in the week??
    Originally posted by ~moneysavingnovice~
    I batch cook quite a lot of stuff - especially mince based meals.

    I cook a huge pot of bolognese sauce, or chille con carne, or 'cottage pie base' and freeze in portion size. I don't make the cottage pies up with the potato as (1) we sometimes have it over a jacket potato, and (2) it takes more space in the freezer

    Then when we next want one of these meals I pull the appropriate number of portions out in the morning, turn out into a pan to defrost, and heat up in the evening while the spaghetti/rice/potato is cooking (we like the jacket potato option with any, but I have a combi microwave so can do 2 'proper' jackets in about 18 minutes )
    Cheryl
  • ~moneysavingnovice~
    I batch cook quite a lot of stuff - especially mince based meals.

    I cook a huge pot of bolognese sauce, or chille con carne, or 'cottage pie base' and freeze in portion size. I don't make the cottage pies up with the potato as (1) we sometimes have it over a jacket potato, and (2) it takes more space in the freezer

    Then when we next want one of these meals I pull the appropriate number of portions out in the morning, turn out into a pan to defrost, and heat up in the evening while the spaghetti/rice/potato is cooking (we like the jacket potato option with any, but I have a combi microwave so can do 2 'proper' jackets in about 18 minutes )
    Originally posted by cw18
    Fab- will try batch cooking next weekend. I am a bit clueless though- have you got any recipes for the spag bol or chilli sauce? We love those meals but normally buy read meals

    Also when you freeze them, do you put them in sandwich bags or do I need to buy a few containers?

    Cheers!
    • cw18
    • By cw18 4th Jul 10, 3:49 PM
    • 8,081 Posts
    • 86,080 Thanks
    cw18
    Fab- will try batch cooking next weekend. I am a bit clueless though- have you got any recipes for the spag bol or chilli sauce? We love those meals but normally buy read meals

    Also when you freeze them, do you put them in sandwich bags or do I need to buy a few containers?

    Cheers!
    Originally posted by ~moneysavingnovice~
    My 'recipes' are a bit hit and miss, depending on what I have in. I always add loads more mushrooms to bolognese than any recipe I've seen says (we love them), and more often than not use a packet mix for the chille (adding extra chille powder if it's too mild for us). But there are loads on the Internet. Grated carrot works well in bolognese too - and boosts f&v count as well as padding out the mince. A lot of people add oats to stretch the number of portions, but that's not something I've personally tried (yet).

    I use whatever mince I have to hand/manage to pick up on clearance - so it could be beef or pork or turkey. I often also mix this (especially beef mince, less so turkey) with some rehydrated dried soya mince -- but would advise getting used to cooking the meals before you try 'tampering' that way, as you do need to get the balance right for taste preference.

    I normally freeze in (empty) 500g marge tubs, but once frozen I turn out into freezer bags as they take less space (and it also frees up the tubs for the next batch cooking session).



    ETA: Spaghetti Carbonara is another meal that doesn't take long to cook from scratch, and neither does omelette (I add mushrooms, cheese and ham to ours) with salad. Both are really nice with warm baguette type bread (which doesn't take long to warm through either, but again I use my smaller combi oven for this as it costs a fortune to run the main oven just for a couple of small baguettes)
    Last edited by cw18; 04-07-2010 at 3:53 PM.
    Cheryl
  • poppy-glos
    Fab- will try batch cooking next weekend. I am a bit clueless though- have you got any recipes for the spag bol or chilli sauce? We love those meals but normally buy read meals

    Also when you freeze them, do you put them in sandwich bags or do I need to buy a few containers?

    Cheers!
    Originally posted by ~moneysavingnovice~
    hi, i do a mixture, depending on how many containers i have! i wash out and reuse old spread containers, have a few lock and lock boxes (bit like tupperware), and use sandwich bags when i've run out of the above (and make them into a block shape by putting two individual meal bagged portions into the plastic mushroom tray to set into a useful shape.

    if you go to page one of any of the grocery challenge threads the recipes are all listed, sorry , i don't know how to do the link you can click on to get them.

    good luck

    poppy x
    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.
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