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  • FIRST POST
    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    • 9,343Posts
    • 17,889Thanks
    zippychick
    September 2011 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    September 2011 Grocery Challenge 4th Jun 11 at 11:19 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the ninth Grocery Challenge of 2011,

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your August budget, then keep on posting in the August 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 the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #3, #4, #5 and #6 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Zip
    Last edited by zippychick; 31-08-2011 at 9:44 PM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 39
    • sproggi
    • By sproggi 19th Sep 11, 10:42 AM
    • 1,517 Posts
    • 6,376 Thanks
    sproggi
    What is Weezi's 50p a day website? Thank you
    Originally posted by scottishgal

    Weezl's blog is here:

    http://weezl.wordpress.com/

    and the main website is here:

    http://www.cheap-family-recipes.org.uk/index.html

    HTH

    Sproggi
    'We can get over being poor, but it takes longer to get over being ignorant'
    Jane Sequichie Hifler
    Beware of little expenses.A small leak will sink a great ship
    Benjamin Franklin
  • helen jelly
    Morning all

    Welcome and hi to the new people - its ok to join in the challenge from whatever start point you want, I'll add you to the list in a mo [redbaileys and minicizzybee] and I'll make a note beside your name that you are running the total to mid Oct - helps me to remember for next month if I'm still doing it then - MrsM normally does it but she's away from here for a little while. Please ask any questions as there are lots of helpful people on here who will help out and don't forget to check out the recipes on page one that Rosieben looks after for us all

    Good luck

    Helen
    Projects made for craft fair - 40
    1st fair on 13/4/14
  • TrixieB
    Did you have a good weekend away helenjelly?

    NSD for me. Boyfriend coming over later as am full of the lurgy and back/hip/leg playing up bigtime so not very mobile today and therefore won't go out so a nsd for me - although need to order a photobook for my nan's xmas gift from an offer on the freebies board which will only pay postage for if it all works! But that's not counting in this budget

    leftover roast chicken for tea and boyf is picking up a bag of chips to go with on his way here I really love him sometimes!!
    Trying very hard to be frugal and OS - just plodding on and doing my best!

    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 19th Sep 11, 1:14 PM
    • 5,003 Posts
    • 29,347 Thanks
    quintwins
    4.38 on a loaf of bread bunch of bananas and 2x 2litres of milk

    went early and got a fab parking space at the school, but it meant i had to entertain a 2 year old for 40mins so i'm exhusted

    oh a plus note the schools giving me back my 20

    opps just relised i forgot to add the 8 i've given the school for snack money, gonna be tight now just to come in under 200, i will do better next month
    Last edited by quintwins; 19-09-2011 at 1:40 PM.
    DFW 7632/28996 26.3%
  • Nathalie_
    Hi this is my first GC, I'm finding that I can usually spend 30/week. I've never tried to do a monthly shop before, maybe I should!
  • TrixieB
    I don't do a monthly shop, I simply haven't the room in my small flat to store bulk buys, plus I get paid weekly so can't financially do it if weekly works for you no reason to change that

    I'm going to do a stocktake this afternoon then see what I need to last till the end of the month - am trying to not eat into the frozen batch cooked meals too much as they are there ready for when i have an upcoming op to make life easier, but then if I make much more I shan't have room in freezer for the stuff we need to eat now!
    Trying very hard to be frugal and OS - just plodding on and doing my best!

    • franby64
    • By franby64 19th Sep 11, 2:15 PM
    • 894 Posts
    • 10,920 Thanks
    franby64
    Hi

    Spent 6.12 today on 8 pints of milk, 2 loaves and 6 tomatoes! and my total is now up to 264.05/380.00 - I'm thinking I just might do this.

    I've been much stricter this month with junk going in my other 'other' budget so my grocery budget is looking pretty good but my 'other' budget is shot!

    This is the time of year that I warn the family that the padlocks go on the purse 'til Christmas. October and November are my post-Summer/pre-Christmas repair months where nothing much happens i.e. no b/days etc (watch this space and see me eat these words!).

    Hope everybody is having a good September.
    Starting weight on 22/6 14st 00lbs. Weight on 15/2 10st 11lbs. Lost 3st 3lbs.Target 9st 12lbs. 13lbs left.
    • rising from the ashes
    • By rising from the ashes 19th Sep 11, 2:51 PM
    • 12,321 Posts
    • 59,551 Thanks
    rising from the ashes
    am trying to not eat into the frozen batch cooked meals too much as they are there ready for when i have an upcoming op to make life easier, but then if I make much more I shan't have room in freezer for the stuff we need to eat now!
    Originally posted by TrixieB
    Hi Trixie, this is def worth doing. I "stockpiled" 28 frozen meals last month and had my op last week.

    I'm soooooo glad I did as getting a meal out and reheating has been fab and I honestly don't think I coud've coped with having to cook over the past few days (and few more if I'm honest).

    Good luck with your op.
    Grocery Challenge 211/455 (01/01-31/03)
    2016 Sell: 125/250
    1,000 Emergency Fund Challenge #78 3.96 / 1,000
    Vet Fund: 410.93 / 1,000
    Debt free & determined to stay that way!
  • cat_smith
    Another Mr T trip. Not good. I thought I'd got everything last Thursday, but now I'm on my health kick we are going through fruit and salad like its going out of fashion. 30.69 spent on not very much. Fruit, veg, rice, eggs, apricots and lots of herbal tea.

    The problem with mysupermarket shopping list is when your printer breaks 5 minutes before you have to leave you have to try and remember what was on it.

    Oh well. Off to rejig the menu plan slightly. Must try not to go again this week. It was easy when I was never in the town. Now I'm going to the gym and volunteering twice a week I drive past Mr T nearly every day.
    GC Mar 13 47.36/150
  • TrixieB
    I'm on my health kick we are going through fruit and salad like its going out of fashion. 30.69 spent on not very much. Fruit, veg, rice, eggs, apricots and lots of herbal tea.

    .
    Originally posted by cat_smith
    Doesn't go far when you are buying healthy food does it, esp when all the offers seem to be on junk food. Me and the boyf did a week of living off crap when I first moved into my new place and spent 18 in farmfoods and filled the freezer with junk - most of it tasty but not at all filling and not healthy in the slightest!

    Have done my stocktake and now wondering what to actually do with it, could do with posting it somehwere on here but not sure where the best place is tbh!
    Trying very hard to be frugal and OS - just plodding on and doing my best!

  • cat_smith
    Sounds like an idea. We all like pitching in with ideas for using up odds and ends.
    GC Mar 13 47.36/150
  • TrixieB
    Well one thing have found I need to buy is a freezer marker as I have 6x portions of "something that may or may not be stew/curry/soup/savoury mince" it all looks the same when it's frozen?!
    Trying very hard to be frugal and OS - just plodding on and doing my best!

    • FoxFace
    • By FoxFace 19th Sep 11, 3:46 PM
    • 282 Posts
    • 3,123 Thanks
    FoxFace
    Well one thing have found I need to buy is a freezer marker as I have 6x portions of "something that may or may not be stew/curry/soup/savoury mince" it all looks the same when it's frozen?!
    Originally posted by TrixieB

    Yes.... this.... this applies to me too!

    Another NSD for me today, another day where I have been too busy at work to even think of going near a shop

    DH has gone to T's for some cola, but he is paying for it himself because I only buy value (I much prefer it tbh) and he likes branded pop! This suits me though, as it doesn't count towards my NSD's or budget
    Debt Free Wannabe 21.05.2017
    Total Starting Debt = 11,020.01p Currently: 7282.99p
    ~Grocery Challenge: May: 26.77p/350.00p~
    ~Fox's Vegan Recipes~

    • Lulabelle06
    • By Lulabelle06 19th Sep 11, 3:47 PM
    • 39 Posts
    • 573 Thanks
    Lulabelle06
    I have exactly the same problem! I took 'chicken' out this morning only to discover its actually pork! when i freeze meat i put it in bags with enough for the 2 of us. So Chicken tonight with pork instead! I went to co-op on my dinner and spent just under 3(i really need to start remembering to keep my receipts!) needed to get peppers and was dreading spending nearly 2 on them in coop. but luckily my manager was going to asda on his dinner and got me the ones on offer so they were only 1! cant get to asda with the car being off the road. hopefully will be fixed today! x
    • Pinwheel
    • By Pinwheel 19th Sep 11, 4:25 PM
    • 63 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    Pinwheel
    Hi all

    Just popping in to report spends totalling 52.43 bringing me dangerously close to my 220.00 budget. I've got a week to go and although I've got all the main meals accounted for, ingredients for bread and sandwich fillings and ingredients for cakes/flapjacks for lunch boxes, I will need milk, yoghurts and fruit before next Monday.

    Have a nice evening everyone.

    PWx
    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 -
  • ThrivingOnThrift
    Well I have just over 20 for the rest of the month, but I have meals planned until the end of next week, and a quick run down of the freezer shows that whilst our meals will be rather chicken heavy, I can feed us from that for the last week of the month. That means just milk, fruit, veg and sandwich filling, so I think it is going to be ok! I have discovered a nice easy meal which does not cost too much and seems to be bigger and more filling than the component parts...

    Brown some chicken thighs (or whatever kind of chicken you have) in a pan..ideally the kind that can be used on the hob and in the oven.
    Add an onion if you have one (or some chopped up celery or similar)
    Stir in a can of chicken soup and a can of water (use condensed soup if you can, if not, it doesn't matter)
    Sprinkle over a teacup full of rice.
    Stir in some frozen peas or other frozen veg.
    Pop the lid on and bake for an hour at about 170oC in a fan oven, a touch higher in a normal oven.
    If you have it, grate over a little cheese.

    If you find a packet of reduced chicken thighs this is really economical but tastes really lovely.

    Hope everyone else is having a good month so far!
    September Grocery Challenge 236.28/260
    • sproggi
    • By sproggi 19th Sep 11, 4:47 PM
    • 1,517 Posts
    • 6,376 Thanks
    sproggi
    Managed another NSD.

    Tried out my new breadmaker and found out that it works well, even if the BBD on the yeast was 2008, the powdered milk was 2010 and the flour was May 2011
    Made a plain loaf and a fruit loaf and both rose perfectly with no heavyness.
    Pre MSE days, I would probably have binned everything out of date, now, unless it is a use by, the dates might as well not exists

    Sproggi
    'We can get over being poor, but it takes longer to get over being ignorant'
    Jane Sequichie Hifler
    Beware of little expenses.A small leak will sink a great ship
    Benjamin Franklin
  • tracey12
    Well one thing have found I need to buy is a freezer marker as I have 6x portions of "something that may or may not be stew/curry/soup/savoury mince" it all looks the same when it's frozen?!
    Originally posted by TrixieB
    I was the same, always putting portions of food in the freezer and thinking I'll remember what was in there. I now freeze portions of curry, spag bol, chilli etc in a shallow rectangle box and then put a freezer bag which has been labelled around it. When the contents are frozen I take out of box so I can re-use it and put the solid block in the freezer bag. They are then all the same size and its easier to stack in the freezer than trying to arrange different shape spag bol etc.

    Tracey
    Officially debt free
  • TrixieB
    Wish I knew about that tip Tracy12, have just portioned up a load of spicy carrot soup into bags to freeze, oh well, they'll be weird shapes now as threw them in lol

    Boyf just rang and is picking up a takeaway now grrr - well not grr cause I get a curry! but grr cause had got my menu plan all sorted and now going to have to re rejig it!! At least it doesn't come out of my grcery budget anyway

    So the chicken leftover from roast has been stripped and frozen - each breast chopped and bagged up seperately ready for a pasta bake and a suet crust pie, wings and carcass and skin etc bagged ready to make stock at a later date as I cba now.

    **EDIT - GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR! Now I get a phone call saying oh come out and I'll take you for tea> I haven't washed my hair and still have PJs on, why does he always do this to me on days like this, never when am feeling great and have made the effort to get dressed and dolled up a little argh?!
    Last edited by TrixieB; 19-09-2011 at 5:12 PM.
    Trying very hard to be frugal and OS - just plodding on and doing my best!

    • MummyEm
    • By MummyEm 19th Sep 11, 5:02 PM
    • 573 Posts
    • 5,144 Thanks
    MummyEm
    I went shopping this am and ending up spending quite a bit more than was really necessary but did stock up on quite a few items including a years supply of toothbrushes for the kiddies!

    Now up to 320.90 - actually a bit less than my sig as forgot to take out two xmas pressies I bought.

    Should still be ok for the month though as we do have loads of meat in the freezer so next week I think I'll do a 'bare essentials' shop to take us through to the end of the month. It would be great to come in under budget. I reduced it from 450 last month as I'd managed to just come in under, would be great to be able to bring it down to 400 for next month but I'll only do this if I'm under this month IYKWIM. My ultimate aim is to get it to around 350 but this is a level which is comfortable for us and I don't want to deprive us too much otherwise we end up having massive overspends when we just lose it!

    I need to do a stock take of the cupboards and freezers this week as to check what needs using up. Doing this is the only way for me to realise just how much we have in!
    MFW original end date 295000 Nov 2039 currently 224,824.58 Jul 2035 Dream end date Nov 2025
    2017 Target EF 20,000/ 20,000 OP 2390.10/1900
    TOTAL OP 2014 1042.60 OP 2015 3357.75 OP 2016 6480.98 Family Loan 17000.00
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