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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 26th May 11, 10:29 PM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    June 2011 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 26th May 11, 10:29 PM
    June 2011 Grocery Challenge 26th May 11 at 10:29 PM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the sixth Grocery Challenge of 2011,

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your May budget, then keep on posting in the May 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'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!

    Last edited by Pink.; 29-05-2011 at 8:18 PM.
Page 23
  • rosieben
    TheBees - take care of yourself, and well done to your OH!

    take care all
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
    • CRANKY40
    • By CRANKY40 12th Jun 11, 8:22 PM
    • 3,326 Posts
    • 36,409 Thanks
    Total spend of 17.59 last week. I've updated my signature. The slimming world thing is still going well. I have to admit I'm not a big fan of fruit and have been tending to fill up on veg and salads rather than fruit. I have one pot of salad leaves that are useable in the garden, one pot coming up to ready, and I've just started four more off, so hopefully that will save some pennies.
    July grocery challenge 152.03/300
    • Sue14
    • By Sue14 12th Jun 11, 9:54 PM
    • 899 Posts
    • 10,894 Thanks
    I spent 1.35 on milk earlier in the week, then today I spent 3.96 in the 99p shop, 5.54 in Wilko and 31.23 in Mr A's, including a pack of whoopsied baby new potatoes, and a 180g pack of chicory for 20p each. I've never had chicory before and have no idea if we're going to like it, but thought for 20p we should try it, now I'm not sure what to do with it, does anyone have any ideas please?

    Yesterday I made some bread rolls, using the flour and yeast that my friend gave me a while ago, so practically free, but when I told OH I was making them he offered to go to the shop to buy the rolls 'to save me time', which was very nice of him, but I had to explain that there's no point in having the breadmaker and ingredients, if he goes and buys stuff for our lunch instead of me using what we have! I made 8 rolls, so we used 4 for our lunch yesterday, and the rest I put in the freezer for next Saturdays lunch.
    Weight loss challenge 3/10lbs
    Total weight loss 21lbs

    • Living proof
    • By Living proof 13th Jun 11, 7:56 AM
    • 1,568 Posts
    • 10,219 Thanks
    Living proof
    I haven't had a chance to catch up with the news this weekend, but hope you are all doing well with your budget, but if not just dust yourself down, pick yourself up - and there's always July.

    I seem to be spending less every week now as trying to use store-cupboard stuff and being very strict with myself about buying things just because they are good value. Also seasonal food is pretty good - I got another 12" pineapple for 99p in Lidl at the weekend and that is about two week's breakfast for me! On the downside I nipped into T Metro on Saturday for one item, used the self service scanner and forgot to take the 5 note change when I tendered a tenner. Very unlike me, but I was bursting for a loo and feeling very flustered. I haven't added it to my spend and will just put it down to experience.
    Solar Suntellite 250 x16 4kW Afore 3600TL dual 2KW E 2KW W no shade, DN15 March 14
    Mortgage and Debt Free. Unfortunately Pension Free too!
    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 13th Jun 11, 8:35 AM
    • 5,003 Posts
    • 29,347 Thanks
    morning all, hoping for a nsd today, i need milk because mines out of date but it still tastes fine so i'm gonna wait til tomorrow, dinner is pork casarole, made with diced pork shoulder that i got half price a few weeks back and a bag of casarole veg i got reduced to 10p and froze ages ago, and the dregs of a bag of frozen mixed veg (value might i add) so a very cheap dinner, not only that but we will be having the leftovers on wed so it will be doing 2 meals i giggled my meal plan around so i wouldn't need to buy onions and can use the veg hidden in my freezer so all i need this week is milk and a bag of spuds which i can get from the farm shop up the road

    must not spend money....must come in under budget this month..... i can do this
    DFW 7632/28996 26.3%
    • XSpender
    • By XSpender 13th Jun 11, 9:17 AM
    • 3,348 Posts
    • 34,483 Thanks
    Get well soon The Bees.

    I take it that an honest person didn't had it in then Living proof? I very nearly did this myself the other day. It is a silly place on the machine for the notes to come out.

    Spent 25 in Mr S yesterday on a fresh top up shop and am shocked at how much it cost me. I bought 6 bananas,5 large oranges, 2 bags of apples, large bag of red grapes, half price pack of new pots, 15 eggs, 2 loaves, 3 x 4 pts of milk on the 3 for 3 offer, 12 value fromage frais, 2 x 400g of mature cheddar on offer at 4, a small bottle of lucozade for DH and 1 of kids sweeties for me. It is the fruit that is just so expensive. I shouldn't have had to buy the grapes as I bought a small bag earlier in the week to do for my lunches this week and DH decided to have a couple but they were so nice he demolished the lot!

    I am over the 150 budget I set myself but this was an aim for the moon and hit the stars kind of budget. I will be pleased if I come in at under 250 but I know if I put that as my target I will go over it.

    My meal plan has gone a bit to pot but I have not bought anything extra for meals, we have been eating what we have in. Might have a go at a lasagne tonight or it may be bolognaise pasta bake and GB depending on time and what the sauce looks like

    I have run out of a lot of stuff this month and will need to stock up out of next months budget. I need nappies, wipes, vegetable oil, lentils, sugar, dog food, toilet roll, kitchen towel, shampoo, qu0rn pieces, meat, sausages etc. DH has tried a different kind of razor and blades to keep costs down over the last few months and it is not working for him so we will need a pack of his razor blades too which cost 25 from C0stc0 but last about 9 months. I am going to allow myself 75 next month to cover these items.

    CRANKY 40 - you have inspired me to have another go at planting my own salad leaves. The last 2 years they have failed miserably but my pots of herbs on the patio are flourishing so I will plant up a pot of leaves and put it in the same place.

    Oops I have written war and peace, best get back to work
    • Chloris
    • By Chloris 13th Jun 11, 9:34 AM
    • 651 Posts
    • 9,422 Thanks
    Top up shop in c0-0p. I have updated my signature. The c0-0ps 25% off free range chucks ends tomorrow, so I picked up the last one in the shop. It will do 2 maybe 3 meals.
  • Winged one
    I actually did OK on my big grocery shop this weekend. I got all I needed (including a lot of stores, cleaning things, loads of meat and 10kg of potatoes), and had a 31 voucher to use (money back from loyalty scheme), so only spent 95.

    But I had fallen off the wagon the day before. I went to M&S late in the evening (rather than a takeaway), and found one nice dish which was spicy (so needed a pasta dish or seomthing in case au pair wanted food too). As I found some nice pasta dishes on "3 for 8.50", I got 3 and will use those this week or freeze. But then I found a better dish for dinner (spatchcock chicken) and got nice new baby potatoes to roast and a large bag of spinach. But I forgot to put back the curry. And I was feeling low so got a tart citron for desert. Dinner for DD, and a pack of spring rolls for nibbling on also went into trolley. And had to stock up on cheese portions for lunches as well. And a carton of strawberries too. So I ended up spending 67 there !!!

    Well, the chicken did 3 dinners and 4 lunches. The curry was lovely on Sat night (I cooked jasmine rice and steamed sugarsnap peas at home). The pasta dishes will be great standbys in freezer. DD ate the rice dish which was good (she needs to get back to decent food after being ill, so some tempting is required). The tart last us 3 nights. The strawbs will be nice over the next few days. The cheeses will stop us going for crisps for lunchboxes for a few weeks. I still have some potatoes and half the spinach that I'll use later in the week.

    The freezer is getting back to bursting too. I made a fish pie for last night, using old brocolli and the last of the nice store-baked bread in crumbs too. Some fish went into freezer cooked and flaked to throw together a pie in minutes, and there are 2 portions left from dish to freeze or have for lunches tomorrow.

    I had gotten 2 packets of mince, and effectively got a 6-pack of fresh burgers for free (3 for 10 deal) in supermarket. I'm freezing the burgers individually (great for last minute BBQs then!). I used the mince to make a large and a smaller lasagne, and have a tub of meat sauce leftover as well - smaller dish and leftovers are frozen, large one is for tonight and I will have 2-3 portions to freeze that can be just microwaved. Doing the large batch meant I could use the large tin of toms I've had for ages - I added a couple of carrots, half a courgette and a pack of bacon lardons (all chopped in food processor) to bulk it all out, and a dash of red wine from the open bottle.

    Menu for this week is:
    Fri: Chicken and roast potatoes
    Sat: Monkfish curry, jasmine rice, sugarsnap peas
    Sun: Smoked cod and brocolli pie
    Mon: Lasagne
    Tues: Chicken and sauce (possibly a curry) with rice and extra veg
    Wed: Macaroni cheese (may chagne though)
    Thurs: Nasi Goreng
    Fri: All out (if I get home without having eaten, there's loads for easy "ding dinner" after drink)
    Sat: Curry from freezer (?)
    Sun: Possibly bacon and HG cabbage

    I shouldn't need to get much next weekend though - milk, bread, fruit and veg, cheddar, and some bits from Lidl that we are out of (brioches, lardons). Sainsbugs run is looming in about 3 weeks, so should have used up most of the freezer stocks by then too.
    GC 2010 6,000/ 5,897

    GC 2011:Overall Target: 6,000/
    5,442 by October

    Back on the wagon again in 2014
    Apr 587.82/550 May 453.31 /550
    • ragz
    • By ragz 13th Jun 11, 10:09 AM
    • 3,153 Posts
    • 27,335 Thanks
    On the downside I nipped into T Metro on Saturday for one item, used the self service scanner and forgot to take the 5 note change when I tendered a tenner. Very unlike me, but I was bursting for a loo and feeling very flustered. I haven't added it to my spend and will just put it down to experience.
    Originally posted by Living proof
    I left DH's 14 pack of baccy and a TV guide behind after I bought them in Morrisons on Saturday, called up the next day but it hadn't been logged so that's money lost too. Bummer isn't it?

    Have no onions left, half my meals require onions. If I go shopping for onions I will buy more than onions... hmmm... dilemma!
    Ragz is busy studying
    Progress is easier to acheive than perfection.
    • Pinwheel
    • By Pinwheel 13th Jun 11, 10:18 AM
    • 63 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    Hi all

    Just updated signature, 28.42 spent in total between S**nsburys, C**p and L**l. Meal plan is done for this week and I've had a productive morning. I've got a huge batch of savoury mince in the slow cooker (just remembered I didn't add the 5.00 that I spent on the mince, I will update again when I've finished this), I've made pastry for tonights chicken pie and a quiche base for later in the week, peeled the potatoes for tonights mash and I've got fruit soaking in tea for a tea loaf to bake later. I've hung all my washing on the airer upstairs thinking that it is going to rain again but it looks perfect outside at the moment, the sun is out and it's nice and blowy, do I risk putting it out?!

    Have a good day everyone.
    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 -
  • ebayqueen
    Good morning all.

    Well I actually sat down and added up what I had spent so far this month. Lucky I kept the receipts. I knew I was within budget but it is annoying when you don't know exactly what you are doing.

    This morning I went to town. Picked up YS contact lenses (direct debit).
    2 large lavender bleach
    shampoo and conditioner for OD.

    Had printed a list from MYSUPERMARKET to take to tescos...did my usual thing, called at Lidl and bought what was better value and whoopsied items. Total spend there 42.90.

    Onwards to Mr T's to finish ...
    4 value tuna @ 55p
    Heniz b beans 4 for 2
    Value porridge oats 75p
    Frozen peas 85p
    Leeks 61p.....for soup I use with carrots skins, cauliflower leaves and potato ... makes a great soup
    Bottled squash Robinsons 1 for big baby 15
    Multi grain hoops 2 x 99p for same baby
    Organic soya milk for me as I am intolerant to dairy 98p
    Pasta sauce tesco with veg.. 80p

    realised when I got home should have got some more yoghurts for DH

    so grand total of

    So spend today is


    Am happy with this and hope to get a couple of NSD's this week ... its been so difficult this month.

    Best wishes to all and isn't unbelievable we are half way through the year already

    sorry forgot to add
    MENU for week
    monday..........Home made pizza...feeding 5
    Tuesday.........Mince carrots onions gravy, cauliflower and spuds....feeding 5
    Wednesday.....Sausages Beans and spuds...feeding 6/7
    Thursday........Spag Bol for 3, chilli for 2...all made from same sauce but then chilli added into sep pot, salad feeding 5
    Friday............Salmon steaks in freezer, Salad and chips...feeding 5
    Last edited by ebayqueen; 13-06-2011 at 11:09 AM.
    "You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream" C. S. Lewis
  • DaveSand
    I need to keep track of what I buy every week like this! I'm haemoraging money on my weekly shop!

    What supermarket do you guys think offers best value overall?
    • bargainhunterss
    • By bargainhunterss 13th Jun 11, 12:19 PM
    • 709 Posts
    • 6,702 Thanks
    I need to keep track of what I buy every week like this! I'm haemoraging money on my weekly shop!

    What supermarket do you guys think offers best value overall?
    Originally posted by DaveSand
    I would probably say asda overall, but you get better basics in sainsbury's and the meat/veg is nicer in morrisons. It just depends what you want to scrimp on I guess. We tend to shop at morrisons because were close and top up at Lidl/asda.
    Too many people spend money they buy things they don't impress people that they don't like...

    "Every time you borrow money, you're robbing your future self."

    Every pound we spend is a vote for the sort of world we want
  • HalfaSixpence
    Had my MIL to lunch yesterday so one extra and no leftovers - or so I thought. Then I realised the endy piece was still in the slicing machine. Put it in the fridge and just had it for lunch with salad - very nice. Because noone saw it yesterday it didn't get wolfed!
  • ebayqueen
    I need to keep track of what I buy every week like this! I'm haemoraging money on my weekly shop!

    What supermarket do you guys think offers best value overall?
    Originally posted by DaveSand
    Hi there Welcome

    You will get lots of help and ideas on this site. My suggestion is to log on to MYSUPERMARKET put in your shopping list and you will be able to find the cheapest place for you to shop. I rarely shop at ASDa as I would have to drive 10 miles to get to my nearest so its normally Mr T or Sainsbugs. I do think you should check out Lidl or Aldi if you have one near you.

    Also go through your larder, cupboards, freezer and fridge to see what you already have. Sit down and make a menu for say the next 5/7 days. Use what you have and only buy what you really need to get you through the week.
    It takes a while to get used to but it is certainly worth doing.

    There are lots of people with alot more experience than I so read all the posts ... go back to April and May. You will learn so much.
    Hope these pearls of wisdom have helped

    "You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream" C. S. Lewis
    • meanmarie
    • By meanmarie 13th Jun 11, 1:18 PM
    • 5,102 Posts
    • 49,627 Thanks
    Have spent €40 so far this month....away until 3rd so food for those days came out of another budget....away 19th to 26th so that will also be another budget....not happy about money spending in general these days, food seems to be only thing which is staying in line, so need to do a new budget and regret that anything over from food will have to go into that black hole!

    Good luck all

    Weight 08 February 86kg
  • goodgirl80
    Just to remind everyone who isn't - check the clearance sections in your suprmarket. Recently I have picked up 5kg of potatoes for 0.57p, two packs of mushrooms at 0.16p each, and 12 packs of branded white rolls for 0.39p. This was at 8pm on a Thursday night

    *edit - thats 1x12 for 0.39p, not 12 x packs*
    Last edited by goodgirl80; 13-06-2011 at 2:51 PM.
    • budgeteer
    • By budgeteer 13th Jun 11, 4:15 PM
    • 682 Posts
    • 4,308 Thanks
    I'm already up to 89 and I realise that my target is too low. The last time I did a challenge was probably over a year ago and things have gone up -a lot!
    The good news is that it has focused my mind well, and I'm doing a lot of meal-planning now. Weezl's site has been a great help, except it will cost quite a bit more today because of food inflation. We also buy free-range chicken and eggs, organic tea and fair-trade coffee every week so expect a little more expense

    Our original idea was 160 for the month, but I will now be happy with about 190 - We'll see
  • dark_angel 2002
    I have spent 23.32 on a weeks worth of shopping but had loads of meat to use up so that helps
    Mum 3918.57 owed 350 paid E.on 256.45 owed 30.00 paid
    Rent Paid Council paid
    Total 5101.14 3795.02
    June grocery challenge 93.32/160
    100 day challenge E.on 256.45/226.45
    • Billie-jo
    • By Billie-jo 13th Jun 11, 7:03 PM
    • 1,221 Posts
    • 15,892 Thanks
    Really busy this month and havent had a chance to read many posts. Hugs to those who need them, will try to catch up later.

    Have spent 78.87 out of 240 so not to bad....yet
    Freezers are both full and wont be going shopping until Wednesday possibly Thursday.

    Waste has been negligible just a small pot of jelly I had made and forgotten about, the other pots were eaten so this one must have been pushed to back of the fridge. Dont think that 1/4 pt of stiff water is going to break the bank.
    [COLOR="Purple"][B] MARCH 62.38/250 [B][COLOR="Purple"]
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