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  • FIRST POST
    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 24th Feb 11, 9:52 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    Pink.
    March 2011 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 24th Feb 11, 9:52 AM
    March 2011 Grocery Challenge 24th Feb 11 at 9:52 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the third Grocery Challenge of 2011, it's almost spring so hopefully this will be a new beginning for all of us.

    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 2011 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, #7 and #8 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Pink
    Last edited by Pink.; 27-02-2011 at 11:01 PM.
Page 49
    • tigerfeet2006
    • By tigerfeet2006 17th Mar 11, 12:52 PM
    • 13,826 Posts
    • 29,891 Thanks
    tigerfeet2006
    I'm going to be doing my easy spag. bol. recipe tonight.

    Brown off some mince, bung in some chopped onions and garlic and cook off some more. Add an beef stock cube, a tin of chopped tomatoes, a tablespoon of tomato puree and a handful of mxed herbs. Season well.

    While this is going on boil some water and put spaghetti in to cook.

    Serve with some grated cheese.

    Watch while it is demolished.
    BSCno.87
    The only stupid question is an unasked one
    Loving life as a Kernow Hippy
    • sistercas
    • By sistercas 17th Mar 11, 12:57 PM
    • 4,842 Posts
    • 58,667 Thanks
    sistercas
    spent £8.48 ish in HB picked up 4 boxes of eggs 79p each , 12 mini packs of choc buttons 99p, they had milky way cake bars for 49p - so picked up 2
    some hairspray x 2 and cotton wool pads for the DD's custard creams 25p each
    cant rememb er anymore
    picked up 4 pints of milk and 6 mu!!er yogs in c0-0p £2.89 spent in there
    still need to go to sainsbugs and t3sco tomorrow , then should be ok for the week
    • mrs-moneypenny
    • By mrs-moneypenny 17th Mar 11, 1:39 PM
    • 15,518 Posts
    • 198,189 Thanks
    mrs-moneypenny
    updated my sig, i think the spending is running away again at the mo so must rein it in.
    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
    • meanmarie
    • By meanmarie 17th Mar 11, 3:08 PM
    • 5,137 Posts
    • 49,973 Thanks
    meanmarie
    Total spend is now at €128.51...no idea how the rest of the month will pan out, lots of food in so we'll see.

    Marie
    Weight 08 February 86kg
  • GroinSexyPavement
    It sounds like you've made a really good start already I sometimes have spells when I can't face making packed lunches last thing at night, so periodically I make up a big batch of filled rolls or sandwiches & freeze them. Then if I can't be bothered in an evening I just get some out of the freezer and they're defrosted ready for morning.

    The other thing which a lot of people find makes a huge difference is menu planning - it lets you write a list and stick to it instead of picking up everything that looks like when you're at the shops. Who me?? Never!
    Originally posted by slbhill
    Thanks Will definitely try the freezing sandwiches thing, are there any fillings which work particularly well?

    My first weekly shop since turning over a new leaf is tonight, so we shall see!
    MayGC:£118/£360 April:£283
    CrazyClothesChallenge:£117
    Piggybank:£1,850
    • PennyGrabber
    • By PennyGrabber 17th Mar 11, 5:04 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 22,438 Thanks
    PennyGrabber
    Stuff with too high a water content, like cucumber and tomato doesn't work overly well. I used to do this years ago, when I had a husband (!!), and he only ever had corned beef sandwiches. They freeze well, as do cheese. If I wanted any cuc or tom, I added it in when at work, or had it in a tub, took a bite of sarnie and a bite of tom or cuc!!
    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
  • M0neysav3r
    Thanks Will definitely try the freezing sandwiches thing, are there any fillings which work particularly well?

    My first weekly shop since turning over a new leaf is tonight, so we shall see!
    Originally posted by GroinSexyPavement
    I think thats a great idea too, just mentioned it to dh (as it would be for his sandwiches) and got a weird look I think i'll have a try though and see if he notices the difference

    I had to pop out to grab some ingredients for my chinese at the weekend and ended up spending £8.17
    No Debts (Other than HUGE mortgage! )
    Generally trying to cut back where possible
    GC - March £143.82 / £200 Feb £156.03 / £150 Oops! Jan £180.78/£200
    • TheThriftyScrumpers
    • By TheThriftyScrumpers 17th Mar 11, 7:13 PM
    • 272 Posts
    • 5,359 Thanks
    TheThriftyScrumpers
    Hi! Please can we join at £450 for March. This is what we spent for Feb (shopping at sm's and includes take aways) but I would like to try to do things differently this month. Same budget but getting a fruit/veg box delivered and meat from butchers. Hopefully we can start by eating better for same money and then start shaving £'s off the budget.

    Thank you to all who run the thread and contribute, the reason I am so late joining is I have been reading Feb & then March threads (this site is very addictive). I have already learnt loads (I rang a local butcher and asked about buying meat in bulk and straight away he offered 15% discount!! I Would never have done that before this challenge).

    I also LOVE the recipes. We have already sampled the bbq pork mince, weetabix brownies and of course Twinks Hobnobs (Yum Yum)!! We will be trying the sweet and sour sauce recipe tomorrow in an effort to get less takeaways!

    Just off now to try to hide the weetabix brownies from the OH!!
    GC Mar 11 £437.08Apr 11 £459.26 May 11 £485.52 June 11 £423.79July 11 £409.22 Aug 11 £250.10Sept 11 £396.14Oct 11 £382.37Nov 11 £372.55Dec 11 £332.29 Jan 12 £375.19:Feb 12 £349.58Mar 12 £279.66Apr 12 £249.12May 12 £337.66/Jun 12 £362.58/Jul 12 £317.03/Aug 12 £354.02/Sept £439.72/Oct 12 £210.16
  • Long tall sally
    Evening everyone. Just updated my signature with my spends at Farm Foods, Mr T, Co Op & the market from yesterday & today. I am quite excited because I only have 8 days to go and cannot think of anything that I might need before ( with the exception of milk posibly). Could March be the month that Long Tall Sally FINALLY achieves her target?!

    Mind you, Hippeechiq - I agree those Lidl offers do look inviting, particularly the chicken! Resist, resist!
    Grocery aim £450pm.Spent £519 August, £584 July, £544 June, £541 May, £549 April, £517 March, £517 Feb,£555 Jan, £573 Dec, £465Nov, £561Oct, £493Sept, £426Aug,£496 Jul, £528Jun, £506May,£498April, £558 March, £500Feb, £500 Jan, £490 Dec, £555 Nov,£566 Oct, £505Sept, £450Aug, £410 July, £437 June, £491 May, £471 April, £440 March, £552Feb, £462Jan
  • TheBees
    Thanks Sunnyday. I will go and buy a piece of brisket from the butcher at the weekend and try out your recipe.

    Just done a MrS shop online using a £12 off voucher. I think I've bought enough to last to the end of the month along with a few bits of meat from the butcher.

    Good luck everyone.
    Mortgage Free in 3 part 2 challenge - pay off £9000
    Sealed Pot Challenge 416 - target £500
    • mummyjane
    • By mummyjane 17th Mar 11, 8:19 PM
    • 381 Posts
    • 3,685 Thanks
    mummyjane
    Spent £11.75 today on chocolate, raisins, butter, milk and cake cases. Dd's school is having a cake sale for comic relief and all the children have been asked to either make a donation or bake cakes etc to raise money. Most people donate so I thought we would probably raise more by making something to sell.
    Groceries Challenge 2019
    Jan £462.44/£400
    Feb £210.10/£450, 2/10 NSDs
  • GroinSexyPavement
    Right have bought bread, salami and cheese to try the frozen work sandwiches for OH. If it's a success I'll join in next week

    Spent £52 in Sainsbugs on the week's shop which I think is ok as it included Guinness, dog food and loo roll.

    What should I be expecting to spend for 2 of us plus the dog? (I don't include toiletries, but do include household cleaning bits, dog food and alcohol).
    Last edited by GroinSexyPavement; 17-03-2011 at 8:46 PM.
    MayGC:£118/£360 April:£283
    CrazyClothesChallenge:£117
    Piggybank:£1,850
    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 17th Mar 11, 8:43 PM
    • 5,058 Posts
    • 29,575 Thanks
    quintwins
    i knew i wouldn't be able to control myself in te$co i spent £33 on top of my voucher i will get it back in a voucher tho (or most of it) but i'll add it 2 my sig anyway and we had chinese for tea so thats another £8
    OCT GC £196.12/£200
    • burge23
    • By burge23 17th Mar 11, 8:58 PM
    • 74 Posts
    • 504 Thanks
    burge23
    Stuff with too high a water content, like cucumber and tomato doesn't work overly well. I used to do this years ago, when I had a husband (!!), and he only ever had corned beef sandwiches. They freeze well, as do cheese. If I wanted any cuc or tom, I added it in when at work, or had it in a tub, took a bite of sarnie and a bite of tom or cuc!!
    Originally posted by PennyGrabber
    I did the freezing bit this week for the first time and it's been great. Just tiger rolls with ham, cheese and mustard mayo but defrosted perfectly. Matched them up with soup made on Sunday and then frozen in tubs. Took the soup out at night for the morning and the rolls out in the morning. I've saved as the canteen would be £8.80 for 4 days. I spent:

    4 rolls 49p
    3 sweet potatoes 35p (had been an Aldi super 6 but were still lurking in the veg basket!)
    4 yoghurt 99p
    1 onion 7p (out of super 6 bag)
    cheese and ham pennies!
    4tsp mayo/2 tsp dijon mustard (pennies)
    4 bananas (54p for a 5 pack)

    Saved about 2/3 - 3/4 on normal and that was just being organised (for the first time ever!)

    For salad just take it in a little bag and add at lunch.

    actually I just worked that out and that will save me over £120 a year!
    Last edited by burge23; 17-03-2011 at 8:59 PM. Reason: Addition
  • helen jelly
    Just updated my siggy with my £60 spend in Tesc@ tonight. I haven't done a "proper" shop for ages [been getting bits as we need them] but we ran out of fruit and other things so needed to shop

    Keep it up everyone - we're all doing well

    Helen x

    PS Angel and Spiggle - still thinking of you
    Projects made for craft fair - 40
    1st fair on 13/4/14
    • Billie-jo
    • By Billie-jo 17th Mar 11, 9:19 PM
    • 1,221 Posts
    • 15,892 Thanks
    Billie-jo
    Have had two spends since last posting one for £7.28 and today spent
    £36.81 Have just been looking through today’s receipt and have decided that I could have done without £7.97 of stuff. DH decided he HAD to have one particular type of kettle crisp today and they cost a whopping £1.75 and this is for just one packet, he wont be having them again that’s for sure unless they on a VERY good offer - something like buy one get 6 free!!!

    Made a plate pie yesterday and it was thoroughly enjoyed by us all, DH and myself will be having the rest of it tomorrow as DS will be out for tea.

    Today we have just had our first ever ‘Almost Vegetarian Curry’ I had just three small chicken thighs in the freezer so cut the meat off the bone and made a curry added onions, mushrooms, peppers, green beans, some broccoli stalks and a few left over potatoes. DH & DS both had seconds so I think it was a success even though while it was being put together I got plenty of comments to the effect of ‘you’ve forgotten the meat’ and ‘has the chicken ran off’ etc etc

    Have £142 left and 14 days left of this month to get through -
    'can she do it'? YES she can (I think)

    Good to hear so many of you are playing Te$co/A$da at their own game and long may it continue. Unfortunatly not including myself here cause I just know that for some reason or another I would end up doing it all wrong.
    [COLOR="Purple"][B] MARCH £62.38/250 [B][COLOR="Purple"]
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 17th Mar 11, 10:37 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    angelatgraceland
    I popped in Tes££ tonight as I had to go that way and Im not usually near one. I ended up buying lots because they were just reducing the meat so I got some great bargains. Got hubby some pyjamas too only to find the security tag still on them tonight! Now removed with pliers-tho I could have popped into work to remove this in the "normal" method. (DD17) made leek and potato soup, victoria sponge, meatloaf and potato coleslaw(saw it on tv last night)and it was all delicious. Now replaced the pork we used with what I bought tonight-freezer is very full-shame I didnt have more room as I could have bought a lot of reduced milk too. Got reduced strawberries so I popped back the ones I had been temped to buy full price-so I spoilt us tonight!
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is £1500 pa £125 calendar month £28.84 pw for 3 adults
    • boultdj
    • By boultdj 18th Mar 11, 5:27 AM
    • 4,505 Posts
    • 33,130 Thanks
    boultdj
    And spent another $16.53 to add.
  • Candy Belle

    Happy Friday!!!!!!!

    Just a few spends from yesterday to report

    Sainsbugs £9.13 - 9Pk Andrex, 3x6Pk Walkers (on offer) Lemonade and coffee.

    Hopefully come in on budget as DH gets paid on monday - but cupboards/fridge/freezer are bare so really gonna have to think about what to eat this weekend! Argh!!!!

    Have a good day everyone x
    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
    • Sunnyday
    • By Sunnyday 18th Mar 11, 7:34 AM
    • 3,892 Posts
    • 34,008 Thanks
    Sunnyday
    Right have bought bread, salami and cheese to try the frozen work sandwiches for OH. If it's a success I'll join in next week

    Spent £52 in Sainsbugs on the week's shop which I think is ok as it included Guinness, dog food and loo roll.

    What should I be expecting to spend for 2 of us plus the dog? (I don't include toiletries, but do include household cleaning bits, dog food and alcohol).
    Originally posted by GroinSexyPavement
    Hi GSP,

    there are two of us, 1 cat and 2 dogs and this month i have a budget for £120 for us humans and £50 for the animals. This varies a bit sometimes but as i now buy up offers more than i used to it usually works.

    HTH

    SD
    Planning on starting the GC again soon
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