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    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 24th Jan 11, 3:50 PM
    • 9,343Posts
    • 17,889Thanks
    February 2011 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 24th Jan 11, 3:50 PM
    February 2011 Grocery Challenge 24th Jan 11 at 3:50 PM
    Hi Everyone,

    Welcome to the second Grocery Challenge of 2011

    This is my first time starting the thread so EEEEEEEEEEEKKKKKKKKK! It's a bit scary.

    Pink, you're not going to shout at me are you? Just thought I would have try to help you out and have a bash at it myself this month. Credit where it's due Pink - this thing has pickled me brain!

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your January budget, then keep on posting in the January 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 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. Hope it's a good one for all of us.

    Last edited by zippychick; 28-01-2011 at 8:44 PM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 75
    • Sunnyday
    • By Sunnyday 24th Feb 11, 5:02 PM
    • 3,892 Posts
    • 34,008 Thanks
    Hi Peeps

    i shall be updating my siggy soon as DH has just emptied his wallet of reciepts - i suspect that a good few of these will be food

    Kathlicos - Thinking of you and your family ((((HUGS))))

    Nickjw - Another one here with the Co Op members card, every bit is a bonus

    Pinwheel - I don`t include alcohol spends in my budget as we rarely buy it but i do include the ingredients for the wine that i make.

    Planning on starting the GC again soon
    • Pinwheel
    • By Pinwheel 24th Feb 11, 5:16 PM
    • 63 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    Thank you Helen, I think I will do that too. It's a treat rather than a necessity (well most of the time!) so I think I should keep it separate.

    Oct GC 36.72/220.00
    Sep GC 223.58/220.00
    Aug GC 200/200
    Jun GC 192.73/220 - Jul GC 296.88/220
    Apr GC 230.40/200 - May GC 230.40/220 -
    Feb GC 200.19/200 - Mar GC 203.37/200 -
    • Pinwheel
    • By Pinwheel 24th Feb 11, 5:22 PM
    • 63 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    Wow Sunnyday what sort of wine do you make? I had a demijohn for Christmas because I want to start making wine, can you recommend a good wine for a beginner to make?

    Oct GC 36.72/220.00
    Sep GC 223.58/220.00
    Aug GC 200/200
    Jun GC 192.73/220 - Jul GC 296.88/220
    Apr GC 230.40/200 - May GC 230.40/220 -
    Feb GC 200.19/200 - Mar GC 203.37/200 -
    • Sunnyday
    • By Sunnyday 24th Feb 11, 6:03 PM
    • 3,892 Posts
    • 34,008 Thanks
    Wow Sunnyday what sort of wine do you make? I had a demijohn for Christmas because I want to start making wine, can you recommend a good wine for a beginner to make?

    Originally posted by Pinwheel
    I can recommend a very good one which was originally posted by Jenny Jelly, i discovered it about three years ago - amended it slightly and haven`t stopped making it since. Its very cheap to make and very easy. Start to finish in about 5 weeks sometimes 6.

    Into your demijohn pour 1 litre of apple juice & Half a litre of white grape juice

    In a large pan pour 2lb sugar, add a kettle full of boiling water and stir, you may have to turn the heat on under the pan to dissolve the last bit. Allow to cool until its just warm and then pour into the demijohn.
    Top up with cold water to halfway up the curved shoulder.

    Add 1 teaspoon pectolase
    1 teaspoon citric acid and 1 teaspoon of yeast nutrient, pop the airlock in and leave until the next day.

    Next day add 1 teaspoon of wine yeast and give it a good shake then replace the airlock. It will start to ferment, when its totally finished syphon it into a clean demijohn (don`t forget to sterilise before use) i run it through a coffee filter in a funnel into the clean one. The nasty stuff left can go down the drain. I then add 1 teaspoon stabilising powder and 1 crushed campden tablet. Replace the airlock give it a good shake and leave it for a couple of weeks. It will start to clear and then you can bottle it. Best served freezing cold

    If i`m not bottling it i don`t bother with the stabiliser or campden tab. I just pour some from the demijohn into a jug and pop it in the fridge

    The best results come from the clear apple juice and white grape(usually from MrM`s) make sure its the not from concentrate stuff. Avoid the juice with the nasty additives.

    The yeast, pectolase etc all come from Wilkinsons for around a pound, the yeast is a couple of pounds and they will all last ages.

    Hope that you have a go as its lovely. Even with the price increases it works out about 1 a bottle. The initial layout for the yeast etc is small and will make a good few dj`s full. It is quite strong

    Happy brewing - let me know how you get on.

    Last edited by Sunnyday; 19-03-2011 at 5:23 PM.
    Planning on starting the GC again soon
    • Pinwheel
    • By Pinwheel 24th Feb 11, 6:19 PM
    • 63 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    Thank you so much for taking the time to write this out Sunnyday, I am definitely going to try it. It looks like a trip to Wilkinsons is on the cards for the weekend.

    How exciting!
    Oct GC 36.72/220.00
    Sep GC 223.58/220.00
    Aug GC 200/200
    Jun GC 192.73/220 - Jul GC 296.88/220
    Apr GC 230.40/200 - May GC 230.40/220 -
    Feb GC 200.19/200 - Mar GC 203.37/200 -
    • sistercas
    • By sistercas 24th Feb 11, 6:26 PM
    • 4,842 Posts
    • 58,667 Thanks
    declaring at 359.48 thats 40,52 under
    thanks Mrs M

    Katholics so sorry to hear about your dad , my thoughts are with you and your family
  • katholicos
    Thank you all for being so kind and for offering words of sympathy and comfort at this difficult time. The messages both on the forum and pm's are all very much appreciated. Many thanks!

    Ok, back to food...wanted to keep busy, we came back home for the first time since the early hours of Sunday morning when we were called to the hospital...have been staying with mum, but she wanted us to try to get back to normal and as i only live 10 mins away from her, if she needs me i can be there in a jiffy, so anyways, i came holme and baked...'artisan' bread and flapjack and foaccia. I made Quorn curry for tea and served it with rice.
    Grocery Challenge for October: 135/200

    NSD Challenge: October 0/14
    • dumpling
    • By dumpling 24th Feb 11, 7:00 PM
    • 1,758 Posts
    • 24,318 Thanks
    Hi Mrs M, I'm declaring at 387.62 for this month. A couple of quid over but I can live with that! I'll be in next month's challenge too but I have 3 big birthdays in March so I'll put my budget up to 425.

    Thank you for running this challenge, it's really made me look at what my money is going on and that's got to be a good thing.

    • mrs-moneypenny
    • By mrs-moneypenny 24th Feb 11, 7:10 PM
    • 15,518 Posts
    • 198,189 Thanks
    Kathlicos sending you deepest condolences to you and your family at this difficult time

    xspender thank you for the recipe ive printed it off

    just been MrS and spent just under a tenner will update my sig once ive sorted the receipt out
    SPC~12 ot 124

    In a world that has decided that it's going to lose its mind, be more kind my friend, try to Be More Kind
    • eveie189
    • By eveie189 24th Feb 11, 7:12 PM
    • 300 Posts
    • 2,896 Thanks
    Hi everyyone,

    I would like to declare at 191.86 for Feb out of 250. I am so pleased. Could I please be put down for 200 for March as there is only me, 3 kids, a cat and 2 rabbits now me and DH have seperated.

    April GC 9th-7th may 0/320
  • helen jelly
    All In One Apple Cake

    6oz Self Raising Flour
    1 Level Tsp Baking Powder
    4oz Brown Sugar
    4 fl oz [100ml] Sunflower Oil
    2 Eggs
    5-6 Sweet Apples [not cooking apples]
    4 Tsp Cinnamon
    1 Tsp Mixed Spice

    1. Grease and line the cake tin with marg or butter and pre heat oven to Gas Mark 5 or 190C

    2. Apples - remove core and skin and dice into small chunks

    3. Mix the prepared apples with the sugar and spice [setting a few aside for the top if required]

    4. Sieve the flour and baking powder into a large bowl, make a well in the centre, add the sunflower oil, eggs and the spiced apples in no particular order, then beat the whole lot together on high speed for half a minute.

    5. Pour the mixture into the tin and gently press the reserved pieces of apple into the top. Bake until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean - approx 40 mins.

    I didn't use the mixed spice [I had none]
    I used soft brown sugar
    My apples were very chunky [DS aged 8 done them for me]
    I used apples that had wrinkly skin as they were getting past their best
    I have a fan oven so cooked at 170C for 30 mins

    It tastes delicious and the smell is scrumptious

    Helen x
    Projects made for craft fair - 40
    1st fair on 13/4/14
  • scotsaver
    katholicos - so sorry to hear of your loss.
    GC for OH, myself, DD18 & DD16 includes Toiletries, cleaning stuff & Food.

    • PennyGrabber
    • By PennyGrabber 24th Feb 11, 7:46 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 22,438 Thanks
    Thanks for the recipe Helen, sounds like one to try!

    Hmm, not doing well now. I went over the budget (not surprising, as I had less than 2 left for over 10 days!). Then, went away for a weekend with bf, we've got back tog, and he did all the buying, so that was fine, but then forgot that I had to cater for dd birthday party at the weekend. I haven't included the party food costs (although making loads of it myself this year - sausage rolls, hm nuggets, flapjacks, pizzas, twinks, lemon cookies etc) but of course I put other stuff in the trolley. I also did a stock up shop ready for next month, and I was going to include it in next month's money, but now I'm just going to accept that I haven't reached my target this month and lump it all in together. Then I can do an AP order for next month, and hopefully that won't take me over budget. I may also try and stay out of all sms for the whole month. I reckon, even if I only need half a dozen items, it's got to be cheaper to pay for the delivery than to go and mooch around myself!! I'm way more organised than I ever used to be, but there is still a long way to go until I can truly say I've cracked the gc.

    Major bonus in baking today. I LOVE twinks, and I also made the cheesy biscs, man they're lush! Did them heart shaped for my dd. Also, lemon cookies are the way forward - never really used lemons in cooking before, but these cookies are fab! Does anyone have any good recipes (savoury or sweet) that use lemons, so I can use up the rest of them! Thanks in advance.

    Declaring 213.36 for Feb , but hoping that march will be better!
    Mrs M, please put me down for 150 for March again.

    Thanks 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
  • bertiebots
    katholicos verysorry for your loss..(I didnt read through the posts earlier when I updated) .

    Can I just ask what people are paying for a bag of granulated sugar at the mo. I just payed 1.09 at sainsbugs..and is it cheaper anywhere!??
    JAN GC- 155.77 out of 200 FEB GC 197.31 out of 180. MARCH GC - out of 200
  • helen jelly
    Bertiebots - do have or know anyone with, a Costco card - you have to buy about 16 bags but it works out at approx 50p a bag [well it did the last time I bought some]

    Poundstretchers usually sell it cheaply too

    Helen x
    Projects made for craft fair - 40
    1st fair on 13/4/14
  • theonlynuttytart
    can i be put down for 150 for march?
    im lumping everything together in the grocery budget and that includes home bargains visits for cat litter!
    ive come in about 145 for feb... not bad but can do better!
    im going to order my nhs cashback card and load it up with 150, so i have to stick to budget or face embarrasment at the tills! eeekkkk! and cashback from asda and sainsburys as well as lots of high street shops!
    Last edited by theonlynuttytart; 25-02-2011 at 9:15 PM.
    Sealed Pot Member 1269 VSP... TO UPDATE!
    No more toiletries challenge..... Making progress!
    GROCERY CHALLENGE 100 January 2012
    • Pinwheel
    • By Pinwheel 24th Feb 11, 8:12 PM
    • 63 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    Hi bertiebots

    I got 1kg of granulated sugar in my T***o delivery today for 68p. The make is 'Mr Sugar'.

    Hope this helps
    Oct GC 36.72/220.00
    Sep GC 223.58/220.00
    Aug GC 200/200
    Jun GC 192.73/220 - Jul GC 296.88/220
    Apr GC 230.40/200 - May GC 230.40/220 -
    Feb GC 200.19/200 - Mar GC 203.37/200 -
    • Rhealea
    • By Rhealea 24th Feb 11, 8:33 PM
    • 51 Posts
    • 187 Thanks
    68p in Asda and Quality Save for a bag of sugar
    Grocery Challenge - Jan 426.06 / 435.00
    Feb 376.37 / 435.00
    March 0.00 / 435.00
    • Sunflower1227
    • By Sunflower1227 24th Feb 11, 8:35 PM
    • 1,680 Posts
    • 22,390 Thanks
    katholicos - sorry to hear of your loss.
    I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn't arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I'm going to be happy in it.

    Weight loss 3 stone
    • Billie-jo
    • By Billie-jo 24th Feb 11, 8:36 PM
    • 1,221 Posts
    • 15,892 Thanks
    Katholicos - sending my condolences to you and your family at this very sad time.

    Bertieboots - Last time I was in our local B&M (about 3 weeks ago) sugar was 69pence so a huge saving if you have one near to you.

    Evie189 - Well done on the large underspend thats brilliant. Almost 60

    Got mum out of hospital so nipped into Te$co to get her a few things and spent 8.49 myself mainly salad things and also got a large chunk of cheese reduced - it was to good to miss. Am doing weekly shop tomorrow and seem to have more meat on my list this week than usual, even though freezers are still really full will also want milk on Saturday so expecting a higher bill than usual, however have 84 left of budget so will manage it. Must do an inventory of the freezers as soon as possible but just lately something has always cropped up.
    Have meal planned up until March 5th and am hoping can stick to it. Trying for 3 meat free days in this period and also a couple of new recipes.
    Made some more soup for lunch today using up half a chicken carcass, onions, swede, celery and some sorry looking pak choi but it tasted fine.
    Am really watching what I throw away food wise latley and this week it has just been one smallish carrot and an apple which was brown and not nice. Only found this out though after taking a bite.
    Last edited by Billie-jo; 24-02-2011 at 9:04 PM.
    [COLOR="Purple"][B] MARCH 62.38/250 [B][COLOR="Purple"]
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