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

    Welcome to the February Grocery Challenge of 2012

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your December budget, then keep on posting in the January 2012 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.

    For everyones totals, see post #7 on this thread

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Zip
    Last edited by squeaky; 30-01-2012 at 6:27 AM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 81
    • hamish222
    • By hamish222 23rd Feb 12, 1:28 AM
    • 707 Posts
    • 3,004 Thanks
    hamish222
    Declaring my spend this month at £279.81. Pleased with this was from 25th Jan - 22nd Feb. Good for me, hoping to keep my next month up until 28th March as near £300 as a can to make sure that still on track for annual budget.
    Yearly Grocery Budget - £100.77/ £3500. January Treats Budget - £11.80 / £100.
    • skilly
    • By skilly 23rd Feb 12, 6:06 AM
    • 882 Posts
    • 10,225 Thanks
    skilly
    Morning all, well went to local market yesterday and town and spent spent &spent so I am well truly over budget now !! Not had a good shop like that since before Xmas ,well i could blame my oh as he did not help at all !!!!! So I will have to start again in march . Been doing this gc for about two years never be out and brown budget like that . Bad girl I am I will go and stand in the corner now ;-)
    27 Sealed pot challenge 3£496/4£706.75/5 £376.74/6 £645.08/ 7 £861.34 /8 £786.90/9£610.49/10 £722.03 / 11? / gold star from sue
  • Lovethenight
    New Month New Budget
    Morning All!

    Right - 23rd is the start of my financial month as it's payday

    I'm aiming for £220 to last me until the 22nd March, to cover all food, household stuff, toiletries etc for me and DH. Last month was my wake-up call when I spent over £300 and there's only 2 of us!
    £220 still seems like a lot to me, but I'm starting off carefully and not setting a really strict budget to start with until I get the hang of this challenge. I'm also hoping to start stocking up a bit more when I see a good deal - something I'd never even thought about doing before!

    Anything leftover from the GC at the end of the month is going towards a new bathroom
    In addition to this, I'm allowing myself £20 pocket money each Friday and anything left is going into a sealed pot to save towards Christmas.


    Sorry for the ramble - it's good to get this down in b&w and hopefully sharing this with you all will help me to stick with it too

    Helenjelly - I've updated my sig with the info, but please do whatever is easiest for you.

    I've just had my first spend of £26 at AppF - my first order with them so will see how that goes!

    Have a frugaltastic day everyone!
    • elsiepac
    • By elsiepac 23rd Feb 12, 7:49 AM
    • 1,734 Posts
    • 12,717 Thanks
    elsiepac
    Woo hoo first rule of OS club, look in the store cupboard. To cut a long story short had a biopsy on my tongue this morning. Starting to feel a bit peckish but not sure what to eat. And there at the back of my store cupboard is half a tub of food replacement drink Which means today is another NSD
    Originally posted by DundeeDoll
    I hope everything is ok DundeeDoll

    I've updated my signature to show it's just me I feed on my giant budget, as per previous posts!

    I'm taking spaghetti off my shopping list for next month as my friend is moving to London and has filled a box with food from his cupboard and given me the remainder, namely:

    4x Mr T Organic Wholewheat Spaghetti 500g
    1x Napolina white spaghetti 500g
    1x Mr T Jar Bolognese sauce

    I couldn't understand why he was giving me this stuff as it's great storecupboard items, but from what I can understand I think it's just a storage issue for him and easier for him to get rid! I'm doing well this month in terms of unexpected donations, what with the veg mum gave me earlier in the month as well!

    No more spends to report yet - I should only need to buy milk over the weekend and have PLENTY in to keep me till then, and then I get paid Wednesday which starts my new month.

    I've become completely obsessed with this thread and the OS boards in general. Now I'm debt free (still hasn't sunk in!) I need to stay really focussed as I know how little willpower I sometimes have, and I DO NOT EVER want to be in debt again (excluding a mortgage in the future if I go down that road again!). My new thing is cutting down groceries as much as possible while still staying healthy, and also I'm trying to get into craft stuff. We'll see how that goes!

    Hope everyone has a good day...
    !

    LC
    I'm a Board Guide on the Old Style, Greenfingered, Energy & Going Out Deals boards which means I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly and I can move and merge threads there. Please remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this) Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.
    SPC No 074
    GC: Apr 19 £59.94/£200
    Vegan 27-8-13
    • tessie bear
    • By tessie bear 23rd Feb 12, 8:06 AM
    • 4,329 Posts
    • 29,796 Thanks
    tessie bear
    hi...off to lidl in a mo to have a look at a couple of their offers...having a curry tonight with hm wedges so that is mostly sorted...got to do a bit of meal planning as well but that shouldnt take very long

    might go and buy some special offer chocolate in lidl on sat....im in there so much i should ask for a job

    take care tess
    onwards and upwards
  • mh2361

    might go and buy some special offer chocolate in lidl on sat
    Originally posted by tessie bear
    and of course, chocolate on offer has fewer calories!!!!! I wish!
    Had a NSD yesterday which I'm dead chuffed with, but looked at debts today so on a bit of a downer.
    MBNA£862/0 :Santant £115/0 :Barc £5002/4602 Tesco £1500/0 :G £5000/5000 :L £5000/5000 : OD £1231/565
    Debt Tot £18711/15167(feb pd off £3544)
    GC feb budget £450/ spend £470
    march budget £450/
    • baroley
    • By baroley 23rd Feb 12, 9:17 AM
    • 39 Posts
    • 545 Thanks
    baroley
    Morning all!

    Declaring for February £296.38, a huge overspend of £36.38. I am going to review my spending and see what lessons are to be learnt, but I think overspending at the beginning of the month and going to the bigger supermarkets are the culprits. And just because it is on offer doest make it a bargain, or mean that I can afford it!

    I will aim to use A*di more and shop around using mysupermarket. I think regularly "popping in" to look for yellow labels can be a bit counter productive too.....

    Ah well, its all good experience...

    Cleggie, you are an inspiration, and have helped me examine my own buying behaviour, keep strong!

    Love to all.
    Grocery challenge month runs from 25th to 24th
    January £100. £96.20
    February £100. £1.64
    • elsiepac
    • By elsiepac 23rd Feb 12, 9:52 AM
    • 1,734 Posts
    • 12,717 Thanks
    elsiepac
    I can't wait until lunchtime

    I have one loaf and 8 bread rolls sat in the warm room rising (they wouldn't wait till I put them in there to start rising, obviously my kneading does the trick!) - and I've got some YS "salt and pepper" chicken slices from the freezer sat defrosting, and a couple of tomatoes begging to be used soon in the fridge - so a chicken and tomato sandwich on ultra fresh HM bread it will be! Yum!

    LC

    Just realised I have the last of my chicken risotto for tea, so two lots of chicken in one day! i don't normally have two lots a week! hehe, oops!

    Have a fantastic day all x
    I'm a Board Guide on the Old Style, Greenfingered, Energy & Going Out Deals boards which means I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly and I can move and merge threads there. Please remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com (it's not part of my role to deal with this) Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.
    SPC No 074
    GC: Apr 19 £59.94/£200
    Vegan 27-8-13
    • mummyyof5
    • By mummyyof5 23rd Feb 12, 10:24 AM
    • 1,839 Posts
    • 39,830 Thanks
    mummyyof5
    Just got back from town and damage is as follows...£4.00 in £land..sugar..kitkats..hot choc and DW tabs.

    £4.20 on market for 15 satsumas..bunch of bananas..punnet of grapes and a huge bag of 4 red and 2 green peppers...they are usually really expensive so pleased with those.

    £7.60 in MrTs..PepSi Max Tiger bread..chicken yoghurts,frubes and some reduced pains au chocolate for a very naughty dinner.

    Didnt get much treaty stuff as was struggling to carry all this...had to get milk for my mum too so will pick that up tomorrow.
    Feeding 6 Adults 1 Teen a 8 year old with hollow legs and a very fussy 5 year old. Also 3 cats and 3 fishies
    To include all Food,Toiletries and Petfood.
    • ms_night_ryder
    • By ms_night_ryder 23rd Feb 12, 10:41 AM
    • 3,001 Posts
    • 11,582 Thanks
    ms_night_ryder
    spent £1.36 on wrights bread mixes the otheer day, cant remember if i said, then today i bought big bag of randoms and a parazone bleach for £1.26.

    Tesco have the parazone going for 50p, flash for £1.40 and persil for £3.20.

    £4.38 of my budget left, i can do this! gonna buy some flash and parazone later.
    Lose 28lb 3/28lb
    SPC Member 1522/2012-£264/ new pot 2013
    • Sparklyfairy
    • By Sparklyfairy 23rd Feb 12, 11:07 AM
    • 751 Posts
    • 1,539 Thanks
    Sparklyfairy
    Hi guys!

    I haven't posted on here in ages - but I NEED to do March's GC as finances MUST be improved..BUT I just wanted to shout this out to you all in case it hasn't been mentioned..in today's Mirror is
    £5 off £30 spend in Aldi voucher + other money off Aldi coupons..I just got 2!

    Hth someone! xx
    Last edited by Sparklyfairy; 23-02-2012 at 4:10 PM.
    • skilly
    • By skilly 23rd Feb 12, 11:19 AM
    • 882 Posts
    • 10,225 Thanks
    skilly
    Hi, Helen jelly I am quite happy to update my sig and not go on front page .thanks
    27 Sealed pot challenge 3£496/4£706.75/5 £376.74/6 £645.08/ 7 £861.34 /8 £786.90/9£610.49/10 £722.03 / 11? / gold star from sue
    • sistercas
    • By sistercas 23rd Feb 12, 12:47 PM
    • 4,841 Posts
    • 58,664 Thanks
    sistercas
    declaring at £460.28 £60 over , ive been doing the GC for ages and im still carp

    march is a 5 week month for us i think so im increasing my budget to £500

    spent £49.25 in l!dl - prices are just going up and up , a cucumber last week was 69p today its 79p and a £1 in @sda
    also spent £30.03 in @sda part of this was stuff to make a cake for DHs birthday next week, the DDs are making it and wanted lots of sweets to decorate it
    • tjak
    • By tjak 23rd Feb 12, 1:25 PM
    • 139 Posts
    • 1,213 Thanks
    tjak
    So, I am in March GC as I get paid on 20th.
    I have just received a huge delivery from MrA, which I did through mysupermarket, so happy I saved a lot compared to dropping into MrT and W. I also bought a 15kg bag of dog food today, which normally lasts about 6 weeks. I have updated my sig, and worked out I have £30 left for each of the 3 Thursdays before I get paid again, and I really shouldn't need anything else this week as fridge/freezer and cupboards are full. I did the MrA order over 3 days, so I could go back on and add things I had forgotten, so I shouldn't be tempted to nip out for 'one' item.

    As my nearest supermarket is MrW 8 mile round trip, or MrT 12 mile round trip, it should be easy to avoid, but we will see.
    Good luck everyone
    Debt free and saving
    • tessie bear
    • By tessie bear 23rd Feb 12, 1:52 PM
    • 4,329 Posts
    • 29,796 Thanks
    tessie bear
    and of course, chocolate on offer has fewer calories!!!!! I wish!
    Had a NSD yesterday which I'm dead chuffed with, but looked at debts today so on a bit of a downer.
    Originally posted by mh2361
    i think u are on to something with the chocolate....thats my story anyhow....stay positive about the debts baby steps etc
    tess
    onwards and upwards
    • Living proof
    • By Living proof 23rd Feb 12, 2:16 PM
    • 1,577 Posts
    • 10,316 Thanks
    Living proof
    I have had a day off today to fit in an appointment so I bought a couple of things in Lidl but just couldn't resist having a look round Tesco whilst I was in the vicinity. As it happens they had some half price Flora at 85p tub and I will pay that but not double or more and they have lost me as a loyal repeat purchaser. If it's not on offer I won't buy it, period. I was a bit taken aback by all the jars and ready meals but maybe they are being prominently promoted at the moment. I have plenty of my budget left and just one more small shop on Saturday for fresh stuff, so I may drop the monthly amount a little further after another month. I have so much freezer and store cupboard stock the £140 for all spends including petrol is still not very representative. Lidl and Aldi are saviours for anyone on a budget and I was actually cringing in the fruit and veg ailses today in Tesco at the cost of even basic veg.

    Good luck all at the end of the month. It will get easier once spring comes and there is an abundance of local products and I hope we all begin to see the downward inflation reflected in our shopping bills.
    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!
    • DundeeDoll
    • By DundeeDoll 23rd Feb 12, 2:54 PM
    • 3,527 Posts
    • 39,908 Thanks
    DundeeDoll
    .. ive been doing the GC for ages and im still carp
    Originally posted by sistercas
    Well today apparently is St Polycarp day so we being many can all be carp
    Be like a postage stamp—stick to one thing until you get there.
    • nannygladys
    • By nannygladys 23rd Feb 12, 3:49 PM
    • 1,265 Posts
    • 13,717 Thanks
    nannygladys
    Hi everyone
    Another disasterous month for me, tomorrow (24th) is the beginning of another 4 week period for me, so I will be drawing the money for the month out of the bank and giving my card to my daughter. I did my accounts last night and when I look at my bank account I have been putting fuel in the car using my card, NOT CASH like I should be doing and also buying small things like magazines etc that I shouldnt - also using my card, so who am I kidding? only me

    So next month I will aim for 92.00 theres only me, and I really need to get my spends under control, I have quite a full freezer and my cupboards are looking quite healthy too, so here goes for another try.

    Jxx
    Budgeting again, must try harder!!
    Sealed pot challenge no.31
    Frugal challenge 2019
    • sistercas
    • By sistercas 23rd Feb 12, 4:42 PM
    • 4,841 Posts
    • 58,664 Thanks
    sistercas
    Well today apparently is St Polycarp day so we being many can all be carp
    Originally posted by DundeeDoll
    i like your thinking

    been cooking this afternoon. made a base mince and from that made 2 pasta bakes ( one for tonight and one for the freezer) and there were two lots of mince left - so thats bagged up in the freezer.
    i have cooked a gammon joint and sliced it - there seems to be loads so i think it may be cheaper to do that than buy ham. i might look into a meat slicer as my slices are quite thick even with the electric knife
  • mi jardin
    Time for a final tally up, and I blew it this month!
    I totaled up at £115.52 with a budget of £100. Nothing too bad really, and I did stock up on a few bits using vouchers so it will save in the long run.
    I am sticking with £100 again for March despite having a house guest for a week or so, we are fairly well stocked.

    BTW, I am ok with not being on the list, I keep my own tally, and you do enough already keeping us in check!

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