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  • FIRST POST
    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 25th Dec 10, 1:15 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    Pink.
    • #1
    • 25th Dec 10, 1:15 AM
    25th Dec 10 at 1:15 AM
    Hi Everyone,

    Welcome to the first Grocery Challenge of 2011, a new decade and a new beginning!

    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 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.
    For quidelines 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, #6 and #7 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month and may I take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy New Year! Hope it's a good one for all of us.

    Pink
    Last edited by Pink.; 29-12-2010 at 9:09 AM.
Page 113
    • becky170
    • By becky170 25th Jan 11, 7:57 PM
    • 562 Posts
    • 4,433 Thanks
    becky170
    Had a small spend on milk and yogurts today so another £1.83 to add to my spends. Got to pick up some sandwich stuff tomorrow, as I'm fed up with my current lunch choice of pitta bread, cream cheese and roasted veg!
    MFW 2019 #7 £1377/1615
    • poohbear59
    • By poohbear59 25th Jan 11, 8:33 PM
    • 4,820 Posts
    • 55,754 Thanks
    poohbear59
    I haven't checked in here much this month as I have been really busy BUT I have to declare this month at over my budget by £2.30. I was very ambitious to try to feed all of us for such a small amount and I hadn't figured in the bread and milk DH buys every week from the post office. We have lived on the contents of freezer and cupboards until there was virtually nothing left.

    For February I aim to try to manage on £100 I have already spent £26
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 25th Jan 11, 8:35 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    angelatgraceland
    Before you even begin, go for a wee, if you don't need, wait till you do. Then start. Make sure your family are not going to be under your feet. DONT answer the phone.
    I did none of the above and disaster struck.


    I don't think this is one for the recipe collection eh? ROTFLMAO!

    I forgot to tell you I had to throw my slippers out, one was soaking wet and the other all sticky, they were on their last legs anyway.
    Originally posted by Mothership
    I just LOVE your posts! Keep it up! You can ask me for tea and toast any day-we would def need a wee wee(excuse the wee pun)
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is £1500 pa £125 calendar month £28.84 pw for 3 adults
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 25th Jan 11, 8:47 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    angelatgraceland
    I used to throw a few every now and them because they were wet, black inside, funny soft and brown or with too many "white legs" lol. Now I take them out of the plastic bag (it keeps the moisture and eventually wets the potatoes) and put them in newspapers then chuck them in the veggie draw inside the fridge. It is a trick that people here told me and it has made a huge difference.

    Mothership your post was just hylarious! OMG!

    I went to MrM and HB without a calculator So I ended spending far too much and in things not needed and for a total of £38.76 . I will update my sig in a sec and include also tomorrow's delivery of A&C for £16.78 (small fruit & veg box, bananas and eggs).

    Total for January (SO FAR, still a few days to go): £218.67 / £250

    Target for February: £210

    I am going to try to reduce £10 more a week, see if I can manage.
    Originally posted by martafdz
    I never bother with a calculator-I add it up as I go around, rounding it up or down to the nearest 50p. Don't forget that your mobile phone usually has a built in calc too. You can also use the memo facility on it to make notes of spends or shopping lists or you can text yourself(if included on contract)with prices, spends etc. Yes-I am sad0-I have sent myself a few messages! They don't get lost so easily either. Also a good way of noting where you parked in large carparks such as bay E1 or level 5 facing the church or whatever. Before this I used to "lose" my car in carparks!!!

    Motherships posts-

    Purse/Bank
    Things you’ll need to get started…

    Now pasted into Word and saved on my desktop for REAL study!
    Last edited by angelatgraceland; 25-01-2011 at 8:51 PM.
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is £1500 pa £125 calendar month £28.84 pw for 3 adults
    • meanmarie
    • By meanmarie 25th Jan 11, 9:17 PM
    • 5,136 Posts
    • 49,961 Thanks
    meanmarie
    According to my receipts I have spent €139.50, but am almost certain that there is another €20 gone somewhere else, as I am sure that the last time I spent money I mentally added it all up to €160/70...will see what I can remember or find, am really annoyed at getting so confused at this stage of the year!

    Marie
    Weight 08 February 86kg
  • 2joanne
    Budget of £4680 for the year (£390 per month).........

    Happy to declare that I've just had Mr T delivery and when added to the total, we're currently under budget by £12.25!

    Yipee!

    Total Spend £377.75/£390

    Would like to change my budget to monthly from annually and reduce my my budget to £300 for Feb!

    Many thanks!
    LBM 8/6/12
    Tesco:gone Wardrobe credit: gone
    Barclays £3669.71; Car £8820; 1st D £15000; Total:£9135.21/£36692 25%
    DFD Nov 2015
  • martafdz
    I never bother with a calculator-I add it up as I go around, rounding it up or down to the nearest 50p. Don't forget that your mobile phone usually has a built in calc too. You can also use the memo facility on it to make notes of spends or shopping lists or you can text yourself(if included on contract)with prices, spends etc. Yes-I am sad0-I have sent myself a few messages! They don't get lost so easily either. Also a good way of noting where you parked in large carparks such as bay E1 or level 5 facing the church or whatever. Before this I used to "lose" my car in carparks!!!

    Motherships posts-

    Purse/Bank
    Things you’ll need to get started…

    Now pasted into Word and saved on my desktop for REAL study!
    Originally posted by angelatgraceland
    Oh, yeah, sorry, I use the calculator from my mobile but it had ran out of battery!! I just typed "calculator" instead of "calculator from my mobile" out of lazyness I use the notepad to make notes of presents, offers or wish lists! Lol It is useful for pressies though, when my OH says "i like that" at whatever thing he's looking at, I just make a note immediately so I do not forget for the next b-day/aniversary/xmas... I have a program called "Handy Expense" on it, I have created several categories of expenses (groceries, transport, entertainment, toiletries, lunch...) so I now just open it select the category and add the expenses as I go. The program gives me a report instantly on how much I have spent in what, or a total of everything. It is really good. My phone is just a Nokia, btw, not an iPhone, this program can be downloaded for several phones. It's easy, simple but brilliant!


    EDIT: on receipts, I have a big 2011 diary (big one, like almost A4 size) and I now staple or celo-tape all the receipts from the day. That way I keep the receipts easily accesible.
    Last edited by martafdz; 25-01-2011 at 9:27 PM.
    Quit smoking *1st January 2010*

    13/12/2012, baby girl!!!
  • TheBees
    We're still working on January (already £10 over) but would like to be put down for

    February £380 please

    Planning a chicken casserole cooked in the slow cooker tomorrow while I'm out at work all day. We have a parents evening tomorrow night for DD14 so something needs to be ready to eat before we go out. Might need to get up 15 minutes early to get the veg peeled and sliced!

    Has anyone managed to buy fresh coley fillets lately. I want to make Jamie Oliver's coley curry.
    Mortgage Free in 3 part 2 challenge - pay off £9000
    Sealed Pot Challenge 416 - target £500
  • Missus Aka
    minnie2 i kept track for 3 months last year keeping notes on how much we used and then x4 for the whole year, its not for everyone but im just really into being organised, love my home planner i made it helps with these things, but i only buy these items when on a good offer i will probably spend my yearly stock up budget by the end of the month maybe next but by then i will have all the items i need for the year and then my monthly grocery spend will have very few if any non food items. doing it this way will keep my monthly budget at the same level every month otherwise one month i may need washing powder (50 wash) and softener (85 wash) which will give me a tight budget for that month, but then the next month i wont need it and will have extra money for the food, this way i even out the costs over the entire year by taking £15 of my grocery spend every month (it was £150 now £135) and just having a separate £180 budget for this (it also helps because these items are not always at such good prices so it will save me in the long run, i had savings of £54.22 so it only cost me £88.42 inc 2 delivery charges for 4 50 wash persil powders, 10 bottles bleach, 10 shower gels, 10 boxes crunchy nut, 6 toothpastes, 2 85 wash comfort softeners, 4 fairy liquids and some other bits)
    Last edited by Missus Aka; 25-01-2011 at 9:37 PM.
    SPC Member#1096 Target £150 Feb Count £82.18
    Aug Make£5P.DayChal £0/£155
    My August £100 Grocery Challenge £49.90/£100
  • gdyr1945
    Mothership you are amazing. You have such brilliant ideas and are so organised have you considered running the world? I know you would get trillions of votes! I'm sure we would all be better off. Made my OH come in and ready the marmalade story as it made me laugh so much. What would we do without you?

    I love these boards; I always go away feeling happier and more able to 'do things'. Boy do I wish I'd found this site years ago.

    I think, as well as the 'thank you' 'quote' etc bits at the bottom of each post we should have a 'sending you lots of hugs and kisses' to all those fantastic board organisers and for when the rest of us feeling a bit low.
    • PennyGrabber
    • By PennyGrabber 25th Jan 11, 10:00 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 22,438 Thanks
    PennyGrabber
    Hi all, just checking in. NSD today, haven't actually counted them this month, as when I try to count them, I either get confused or don't have many! Will maybe count them next month.

    Still have £6.60 left til the 31st, which I'm hanging on to for dear life!! Will end up buying minimal amounts of fruit at the weekend, unless school has some bananas left over. I love the fact that infants have free fruit! Can't be thrown away on a Friday, think of the environment...

    Went to my quiz today, and actually knew some of the answers! I'm quite an intelligent person, but don't really know much (!?!) so that was quite nice. We got fed as part of the evening, so I had seconds too, nice!

    Will have sage and onion wedges for dinner tom with lashings of mayonnaise, yummy! Prob won't shop tom, famous last words!

    Night all
    PG x
    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
    • laineyc
    • By laineyc 25th Jan 11, 10:56 PM
    • 907 Posts
    • 5,215 Thanks
    laineyc
    Well, tomorrow I am doing something I haven't done before. I am going to go to a couple of different shops to get the offers. I am going to try out the 2 purse method (thanks Mothership). I am determined to make several changes in 2011 and living in a less wasteful and careless manner is top of the list.
    GC 2011 Feb £626.89/£450 NSD3/7 March £531.26/£450 April £495.99/£500 NSD 0/7 May £502.79/£500
    June £511.99/£480 July £311.56/£480
    • CherryPie
    • By CherryPie 25th Jan 11, 11:05 PM
    • 427 Posts
    • 5,349 Thanks
    CherryPie
    Well, as you will see from my signature, I appear to have failed

    However, always the optimist, this time last year my budget was £100 so I reckon that's technically almost a good thing

    Not quite declaring yet, still have until Friday to go.

    But might as well try for £50 for Feb GC please

    Must use up all the fab whoopsies I have in the freezer!
    My name is CherryPie and I'm addicted to grocery shopping!!



    Grocery Challenge

    Feb 2016 - £46.73 / £100.00
  • rosieben
    ... Hmm once I'm debt free I shall be putting food processor on the list of things to buy - I like the sound of these building blocks! ...
    Originally posted by Pernicious
    you don't need a food processor, just chopping the veg up quite small would do, the food processor is needed if you are trying to sneak extra veg into kids without them knowing



    ebayqueen, as spigs said, Pink winged will start the new thread on the 28th; she'll post on here to let us know its done and she'll make it a 'sticky' at the top of the OS index

    martafdz, I always take my veg out of plastic bags, it makes them sweat and they go slimy yuk!

    mothership, chicken and bacon pasta (one of my favourites!) is in the index, thanks

    CherryPie - you've cut your spending by almost half in the last 12 months, that's no mean achievement
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
  • rosieben
    Have spent £125.36/£180 of my yearly stocking up budget ...
    Originally posted by Missus Aka
    great list! I do the same sort of stocking up, I'm running on an annual budget though; I do love to have lots of tea bags and toilet rolls in
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
  • Missus Aka
    Rosieben thanks you just reminded me that i have 6 months teabags as well
    SPC Member#1096 Target £150 Feb Count £82.18
    Aug Make£5P.DayChal £0/£155
    My August £100 Grocery Challenge £49.90/£100
  • Mothership
    Lamb Stew/ or slow cook
    1lb Lamb (cut up, remove as much fat as possible)
    2 Onions (Cut into 6 chunks each)

    2-3 Big Carrots cut on the slant into 1 in chunks
    1/4 to 1/2 Swede (Turnip) thats the big one with the brown skin. cut into 1 in cubes
    Pop the above in a bowl with a little water covered with cling film in the microwave if your going to use the slow cooker for 8 min on high. We want these to partly melt into the gravy.

    1 lb of Tomatoes (all fresh) or 1 tin and 1/2 lb of fresh tomatoes (Cut up roughly)
    2-4 Cloves of garlic just bash them no need to chop.

    If your cooking it on top of the cooker just throw everything in (NO WATER) bring almost to the boil and turn the heat down to a gentle simmer.
    It should take around an hour, keep an eye on it so it doesn't dry out.

    A little salt & a tiny amount of gravy granules at the end of cooking.
    Serve with mashed potatoes and broccoli or garden peas.

    Sometimes I just boil the potatoes in a separate pan then add them to the stew for the last 10 min, and throw a handful of garden peas in with it.
    DONT be tempted to add the potatoes with the other ingredients any earlier they go all brown and mushy. You want them nice and white .
    The dish looks better if they are white.

    Sprinkle with a little parsley just before serving.

    This stew is a great one for a beginner as you can make it with your eyes shut, the smell of it will drive you nuts, as its cooking. It is one of the tastiest stews ever.
    1st Purse £114.19 Monthly GB
    2nd Purse ££100
    Fridge Freezer £300 3rd Purse /£290.94
  • Candy Belle

    Morning

    Just a small spend from yesterday to report

    W****s - £4.08 Cat Food

    A**a - 60p Bread

    Total £4.68

    Already updated siggy, Have a g8t day everyone!

    Grocery Challange for DH, Me & 2 Fussy Cats (inc Grocerys, Cleaning Products & Cat Food)
    G/C -May £177.04/£235.00 Apr £237.79/£235.00 Mar £226.16 /£235.00
    G/C - Jan £248.52/£235.00 - Feb£214.72/£235.00
    NSD -May 3/31 Apr 10/30 Mar 3/31 Feb 6/28 NSD Jan 3/31
  • Mothership
    Mothership you are amazing. You have such brilliant ideas and are so organised have you considered running the world? I know you would get trillions of votes! I'm sure we would all be better off. Made my OH come in and ready the marmalade story as it made me laugh so much. What would we do without you?

    I love these boards; I always go away feeling happier and more able to 'do things'. Boy do I wish I'd found this site years ago.

    I think, as well as the 'thank you' 'quote' etc bits at the bottom of each post we should have a 'sending you lots of hugs and kisses' to all those fantastic board organisers and for when the rest of us feeling a bit low.
    Originally posted by gdyr1945
    My husband ROARED with laughter when I told him what you said. He said no one would take me seriously, and the country would have stockpiles of EVERYTHING! And we would never EVER go short of ANYTHING!
    He said I'm a mixture of Dawn French And Delia Smith.
    I take it he means I'm a funny cook?
    A cook that can stand up? LOL

    Well my dear husband you are a mix of Steve Martin and Basil Fawlty.

    Great Idea for the hug button. LOVE IT!
    1st Purse £114.19 Monthly GB
    2nd Purse ££100
    Fridge Freezer £300 3rd Purse /£290.94
  • goingontoolong
    Morning folks.

    So I have decided that I am never shopping on a saturday again...half the food was gone over the weekend and Im having to do a top up shop today. Plus OH wants beer...

    This month feels like its slipping through my hands although its only my first week, half of my budget will have gone. Need to really focus and get to Monday as best as possible!!

    GOTL x
    Wedding, CC and Loan by May2012 Target - £35 a day
    Starting 21/01/11 Total so far added to savings - £2316.15 (£82 a day)
    #1280 sealed pot - £58.57 £11k in 2011 - £981.10/£11,000
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