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    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    • 9,343Posts
    • 17,889Thanks
    • #1
    • 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    4th Jun 11 at 11:19 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the twelth and final Grocery Challenge of 2011

    Don't forget we have the Christmas 2011 OS preparation thread. The first post is an excellent resrouce for links and threads, so please do use it

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

    For everyones totals, see post #7 on this thread

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Last edited by zippychick; 17-11-2011 at 9:18 AM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 31
    • Flat Eric
    • By Flat Eric 16th Dec 11, 6:15 AM
    • 3,991 Posts
    • 24,048 Thanks
    Flat Eric
    I cancelled an online order thinking it would be cheaper for me to shop around, Boy was I wrong! It just meant that I spent even more money
    getting tempted by all the goodies in more shops

    On that note, my spends today were 50.58 between MrT, MrM and L*dl and 99.9% of that was on Christmas treats
    I sooo need to lock myself indoors out of temptations way.

    Originally posted by sproggi
    I've been on and tweaked a few things but its still over 200!

    But the vouchers can be applied to that plus the xmas booze presents to be taken off so that makes it a bit more reasonable. I had a look at my local convenience store and whilst they have good offers, Mr T wins the day and better really to get it done in one hit than faff next week/over the xmas period buying more supplies at higher cost.

    Do I tip the driver though? thats the question of the day? because this is my xmas shop and Mr T is who I usuually shop with but I feel it would be rude to give any less than 4 or 5 but on top of the 6 delivery charge, it seems a lot to pay out.... (bah humbug me!)

    • meg72
    • By meg72 16th Dec 11, 7:17 AM
    • 5,082 Posts
    • 46,072 Thanks
    I've been on and tweaked a few things but its still over 200!

    Do I tip the driver though? thats the question of the day? because this is my xmas shop and Mr T is who I usuually shop with but I feel it would be rude to give any less than 4 or 5 but on top of the 6 delivery charge, it seems a lot to pay out.... (bah humbug me!)
    Originally posted by Flat Eric
    Personally I would not tip the driver but if you feel you must give something how about a box of sweets or chocolates, Poundland
    have some really nice looking boxes.
    Slimming World at target
    • PipneyJane
    • By PipneyJane 16th Dec 11, 9:13 AM
    • 1,348 Posts
    • 9,893 Thanks
    noticed on my milk today that its date was 24 december so might be able to get some to last over christmas early next week

    take care tess
    Originally posted by tessie bear
    Hi Tess.

    Not sure anyone commented on the above but, at this time of year, your milk should be good for about a week beyond its "best before" date, if not longer. Don't throw it out if it gets beyond the date. If it hasn't gone sour, then it's still OK to use. (If it has gone sour, then use it in place of buttermilk in pancakes or other baking.) The date is just a guarantee that, if stored correctly by the shop, the milk won't go sour before that date. The moment you take it out of the shop, the date is null and void.
    "Be the type of woman that when you get out of bed in the morning, the devil says 'Oh crap. She's up.' "

    C.R.A.P R.O.L.L.Z. #47 Official Brain Harvesting Body Counter
    • mooomin
    • By mooomin 16th Dec 11, 9:16 AM
    • 13,655 Posts
    • 134,514 Thanks
    I'm declaring my December/January budget now to be 200 again with no extra funds for Christmas

    I'm going to Aldi today to spend 30 with my 5 off voucher. I'll pot later on with how the budget is looking after that
    Comping again

    Wins this year: - two night trip to Belgium, 100 Gett taxi credit, tickets to Newcastle game, FIFA 2016 for PS4, stitch markers, Cumberstitching book
  • PolkaDotsAndLace
    Two weeks to go and 40 left....have to try and do it! I could make life so much easier on myself if I ignored the first shop I did (started this month on 27th Nov and am running to the end of 200 is technically stretching over more than a month...) and put it into the nonexistent Nov budget but I won't let myself. Finding the next two weeks difficult logistically though, we're both away for five days over Christmas, so trying to plan what to shop so that nothing will go off when we're away, but there's still an easy meal when we get back is hard!

    Think I'll be declaring 180 for Jan though, if I manage 200 or just over for an extra long Christmassy month I should be able to do it cheaper. We'll see though, still thinking about it.
    February Grocery Challenge - 100.87/180
    February Don't Throw Food Away Challenge - 0.60/1.50
    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 16th Dec 11, 11:04 AM
    • 5,058 Posts
    • 29,569 Thanks
    nsd today i still have no bread and now no milk, breakfast was porridge, lunch for me will be tuna pittas not sure on the kids yet maybe pasta again dinners sausage casarole with mash and green beans.
    It's not that i can't afford to go get bread and milk or that i'm unable to it's just that i don't want to the roads are icy and were all sick so it would involve alot of wrapping everyone up, i meant to send hubby to the filling station last night but he was working late then i forgot ofcourse by the time i remebered he was away to work this morning, i wouldn't mind but he doesn't get paid overtime he did bring home a box of kfc last night even tho we'd already had tea that his dad had bought him and they treated him to lunch out yesterday and are buying us chinese tomorrow tho
    hopefully i'll make it to lidl tomorrow for a few bits
    OCT GC 196.12/200
    • tessie bear
    • By tessie bear 16th Dec 11, 11:53 AM
    • 4,361 Posts
    • 30,013 Thanks
    tessie bear
    small spend on a s and g set in boots today...not grocery though...made a stew for tea tomorrow and it smells a shepherds pie today which seems good for the break up today so thats the last sanity ill get for a fortnight...made quite a flexible meal plan for next week as we might get out and about if the weather lets us

    tata tess
    onwards and upwards
    • LavenderBees
    • By LavenderBees 16th Dec 11, 12:20 PM
    • 1,703 Posts
    • 17,718 Thanks
    Well, after a fab run of 4 NSDs, I'm declaring myself bust on this December challenge - have just been shopping for "essentials" and managed to spend 57.17 at Mr Ms and 4.29 at M&S.

    In my defence, M'Lud, that bottle of Drambuie that took me over the edge simply THREW itself into my trolley....

    I'm still going to log any other spends on food though...really just need soured cream and veges next week....if I spend more than 5.00, I'll need shooting

    Good luck everyone else. Some of you are managing to be very restrained. Well Done!

    No shopping for me in, honestly, whatd'yamean you don't believe me?

  • Nimeth
    Couple of spends today, in A!di and Morrison$. I managed to restrain myself for the most part, though having to buy 30 eggs doesn't help! (This is what happens when you have two Christmas birthdays and you have to make OH's cake and FiL's cake!) Spent 28.62 in A!di and another 17.85 in Morrisons. It would have been closer to 10 if I hadn't caved and bought a whole salmon for 8, but I've gotten a good few meals out of it for next month.

    I'm definitely going to go over this month, with two weeks shopping to go it's likely to be waaay over. Ah, it's Christmas, I got a bonus at work this year so it's not that bad, lol.

    I've been trying to find a dark Terry's Chocolate Orange everywhere for OH's stocking, but none of the shops stock it. What do they have against dark chocolate?
    Dec GC; 208.79/220
    Save a life - Give Blood
    • Ches
    • By Ches 16th Dec 11, 2:33 PM
    • 1,105 Posts
    • 10,371 Thanks
    Well I have still got 25.30 in my purse so I guess I haven't overspent but with OH coming back with bits from the local shop which he doesn't take the money for and me buying Christmas bits which shouldn't come out of the grocery budget it has been a difficult month to start trying to make sense of my spending on groceries. It has made me more aware of what I am spending though so I think that is a positive.

    I have made an inventory of everything in the cupboards (not counting purely Christmas stuff) and a months menu plan which will start when the Christmas leftovers are used up.

    I have an extra weeks money on the 23rd and 20 nectar points which is earmarked for the rest of the Christmas bits including the turkey.

    May I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year with my thanks for your support.
    Mortgage and Debt free but need to increase savings pot.
  • Mrs Sparrow

    41.14 to report for this week which takes me 31.88 over my original 200.

    Therefore, I'm also declaring myself 'bust' on this one.

    However I'm pretty much done and dusted for the month apart from milk and other bits and bobs if needed.
    Jan 2012 GC: 98.05/200.00
    Dec 2011 GC: 285.14/200.00
    Estimated debt free date September 2018
  • helen jelly
    Hi and welcome to the new people joining us - lovely to see you here - remember to check out the recipes that Rosieben lists on the first page

    Ches - your budget can be weekly if that suits you better - I have included you in the weekly targets for the time being - if you want me to put you on the monthly one its no problem - its really whatever is easier for you [I'm now wondering if I've got the right person??]

    Been shopping again - we sem to be going through food at a great speed!!!

    Need to update my siggy but I'm too frightened to work out what we've spent!!


    PS - Skintmum - just post your target when you're ready and I'll pop it on the front page :]
    Projects made for craft fair - 40
    1st fair on 13/4/14
    • Spiggle
    • By Spiggle 16th Dec 11, 6:17 PM
    • 1,751 Posts
    • 14,202 Thanks
    I can't work calendar months as I get my housekeeping from OH each week. If I finish the challenge on the 22nd. Use the money I get on the 23rd for the extra Christmas food and the money I get on the 30th as the 1st week of January I think I will be satisfied with that. Phew.
    Originally posted by Ches
    ... Ches - your budget can be weekly if that suits you better - I have included you in the weekly targets for the time being - if you want me to put you on the monthly one its no problem - its really whatever is easier for you [I'm now wondering if I've got the right person??] ...
    Originally posted by helen jelly
    Hi All,

    I'll update later on but I just wanted to say sorry Ches, I was having a dim moment a couple of days ago and should have said as Helen now sensibly has, you could always have a weekly budget!

    Off to slap my head a few more times ...

    Take care,
    Mortgage Free October 2013
    • prepareathome
    • By prepareathome 16th Dec 11, 6:35 PM
    • 1,822 Posts
    • 24,925 Thanks
    Just realised not posted my shopping on Monday 9.63 in B & M, 14.23 in Cool Trader and 3 in Mr S ( it actually was 43 there but I used my nectar points so only had to pay the 3. More Shopping tomorrow and then last before Christmas will be Tuesday or Wednesday I hope. Off to update sig.
    C.R.A.P R.O.L.L.Z # 1 prepareathome - baker, premium prepper (hence member #1), topic keeper
    Sealed Pot Member1433:2011 119.12/2012-? Save 12k in 2012 No 126
    Stopped Smoking Wed 25th Jan 2012
    • ms_night_ryder
    • By ms_night_ryder 16th Dec 11, 8:48 PM
    • 3,001 Posts
    • 11,582 Thanks
    I will declare bust as well, glad im not the only 1

    I spent another 6.2 today, this was to get more oep glitch, chicken pack 3, frankfruters 1.99 apples 1.89 and welchs grape juice 1 odd, i know the total is more than 6.21 but the glitch took money off also got the following el paso items, x 6 tortilla packs, 3 cans of refried beans, 3 dinner kits and 3 bottles of salsa, this lot was FREE.

    Also i get paid on wednesday, but dont want t touch it until jan.

    Have loads in freezer, pork joint, beef joint, chicken fillets, salmon bits, chicken pieces, salmon fillets plus some stuff i hav e forgotten i am sure, so really dont need anything but because i do my promo work in mr t's sometimes i cant help it with the whoopsies, eating away from crimbo and boxing day, so shouldnt really need anything, we shall see.

    Will still be logging any spends for this month though.
    Lose 28lb 3/28lb
    SPC Member 1522/2012-264/ new pot 2013
    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 16th Dec 11, 9:27 PM
    • 5,058 Posts
    • 29,569 Thanks
    sent hubby to the shop for milk and bread for the morning and ice cream and coke for now, he spent 10 so an improvement for him (he isisted on bringing 40 with his so i was abit worried lol)
    i'm happy with where my buget is right now as we're half way threw the month and i'm still only half way and we do spend more in dec but i shouldn't spend much in the last week, gonna stock up on hagen-dazs now i know it's half price we hardly ever get good offers on it and it's soooo yummy i've been eating loads of ice cream lately because i keep getting a sore throat and ears and it helps
    OCT GC 196.12/200
    • tigerfeet2006
    • By tigerfeet2006 16th Dec 11, 10:26 PM
    • 13,826 Posts
    • 29,891 Thanks
    Another NSD for me. FIL bought me lunch, which was lovely.

    Dinner tonight was Gluten Free HM burgers.

    I popped two medium sized onions in my little whizzy thingy ( very technical term that . It's a like a tiny food processor that you put the food in and keep your hand on the button and it chops the food really fine. Wish I could remember what it is called, brain freeze) Tipped the onion into a bowl. Whizzed up two slices of GF bread( one slice of normal Probably) and tipped it in the bowl. Two to three cloves of garlic, two tblsp mixed herbs. A grinding of salt and pepper.Mixed them up together. Put in 700gm minced beef and mixed that in. Made into patties by getting a lump and flattening it and shaping it between the palms of my hand. Cook in a griddle pan, I get a little oil hot and put them in and turn the temp. down and cook slowly them, not to fast as it helps keep them moist.

    You can also add grated carrot to bulk it out even more and/or grated courgette. If the mixture is dry then add an egg.

    I served this with lots of veggies in a bowl and lots of chips in another bowl and everyone helped themselves. Also as a variation I put slices if cheese on the burgers near the end of cooking time.
    Last edited by tigerfeet2006; 16-12-2011 at 10:35 PM.
    The only stupid question is an unasked one
    Loving life as a Kernow Hippy
    • Ches
    • By Ches 16th Dec 11, 10:29 PM
    • 1,105 Posts
    • 10,371 Thanks
    Thanks Spigs. Yes it would be better for me to be on a weekly budget as thats how I get paid. 50 per week for me for the whole of 2012 should be doable. I have costed out my monthly menu and it comes to just under this if I have to buy everything from scratch so fingers crossed.

    I will post my end of month figure on the 22nd and hopefully it will be close to target.

    I will be starting the next challenge on the 30th December.
    Mortgage and Debt free but need to increase savings pot.
    • mooomin
    • By mooomin 17th Dec 11, 6:07 AM
    • 13,655 Posts
    • 134,514 Thanks
    I went to Aldi yesterday with my 5 off 30 voucher and did very well indeed - the shop came in at 33.08 so that was a total spend there of 28.08 and we're now looking quite well stocked for the month ahead.

    I also spent 3 in Sainsbugs, so I'm now sitting at 31.08/200 for December/January.
    Comping again

    Wins this year: - two night trip to Belgium, 100 Gett taxi credit, tickets to Newcastle game, FIFA 2016 for PS4, stitch markers, Cumberstitching book
    • meg72
    • By meg72 17th Dec 11, 7:39 AM
    • 5,082 Posts
    • 46,072 Thanks
    I shared a Rospa order with my daughter, so 11 to add.Very impressed as got bacon 25og 2for 1.
    Onions 4kg for 59p and margarine for baking 500gr at 25p.
    So 45 still in food purse,one week to go.

    Just need some eggs and loo roll so may go to Iceland later.
    Slimming World at target
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