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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 24th Feb 11, 9:52 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    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'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.; 27-02-2011 at 11:01 PM.
Page 74
    • unhappy_shopper
    • By unhappy_shopper 1st Apr 11, 8:25 PM
    • 1,294 Posts
    • 7,062 Thanks
    Total for March £178.71

    So very glad that I'm within my monthly target of £200.

    Mortgage: @ Feb. 2007: £133,200; Apr. 2011: £24,373; May 2011: £175,999; Jun 2013: ~£97K; Mar. 2014 £392,212.73; Dec. 2015: £327,051.77; Mar. 2016: ~£480K; Mar. 2017 £444,445.74
    • slbhill
    • By slbhill 2nd Apr 11, 5:06 PM
    • 5,217 Posts
    • 364,173 Thanks
    Ok I tried, I really did but depressingly it came to £400 when I totalled up the spreadsheets Tis not the weekly shop I struggle with but the top ups during the week!
    Originally posted by ab7
    I have the same issue -The GC has helped me reduce what I buy when I do go in but the big difference for me is being really careful with my weekly list so that I only rarely have to buy anything between weekly shops. Is there anything you can do to cut down on the number of visits?

    Apologies if I am teaching my grandma to suck eggs here , but I have a list of everything I buy (not individual items, but headings - bread, rolls, milk, cheese, sandwich meat, snacks...) which I keep on the kitchen noticeboard. As I notice we're low on anything (usually when I open the last packet) I put it on the list. Then the day before I go shopping I do a menu plan for the week starting from stuff I already have & adding anything extra to the list. So for example I had cream and bacon to use up, so I added parmesan to my list so we could have carbonara. Then I skim through the list and check my stock levels. This means I'm a lot less likely to run out of something mid-week and have to enter the zone of temptation Of course it doesn't always work (my OH has only just got the hang of putting something on the list if he's low, and the amount of bread & milk we use is a bit variable. The freezer helps there though!).

    But anyway I'm sure you've spent a lot less than if you hadn't been trying the challenge & got a lot more aware of what you spend and when , hope you're happier with your results next month !
    • fingersxed
    • By fingersxed 2nd Apr 11, 5:43 PM
    • 265 Posts
    • 2,664 Thanks
    £523.93!!!!! Hangs head in utter shame. I thought i was doin so well but having just checked my handbag for recipts I found one from tesco that i had not put on spreadsheet!! it was for +£80!!

    Oh well must try harder. Put me down for £450 in April please. I have upped my budget cause I have yet to come within budget, the kids are off a fair chunk of April, and food seems to have gone up more than i thought.
    • beemuzed
    • By beemuzed 2nd Apr 11, 6:07 PM
    • 2,188 Posts
    • 20,281 Thanks
    Oh help - well over this month, and no idea why - meed to go back to saving every receipt I think!

    Think twice before spending anything!
  • LittleMissHappy
    I've completely lost track of my spending this month I *think* I am under budget as I got some of the Mr T DTD vouchers.......but not 100% sure There is no point in declaring as I really have no clue!!! Am back for April though and am going to go for £250 again. I will keep a better track this time as well
    Be the change you want to see in the world - Gandhi
    OU - DD100 (P ), DSE141 (D ), DSE212 (P ), ED209 (02/12), DXR222 (07/12) SD226 (02/13)
    • CupOfChai
    • By CupOfChai 3rd Apr 11, 6:06 PM
    • 1,319 Posts
    • 7,295 Thanks
    Declaring for March at £69.85, only just squeaked in under target! Lucky that, specially as I had to do my last weekly shop in a Co-op so that one was a bit more expensive than my shops in other supermarkets.
  • Missus Aka
    declaring £94.32 for march
    SPC Member#1096 Target £150 Feb Count £82.18
    Aug Make£5P.DayChal £0/£155
    My August £100 Grocery Challenge £49.90/£100
    • Sue14
    • By Sue14 4th Apr 11, 7:24 AM
    • 899 Posts
    • 10,894 Thanks
    Lucky I didn't declare sooner, as I went to A1di on Thursday and spent another £14.66, so declaring at £126.97 for March.
    Weight loss challenge 3/10lbs
    Total weight loss 21lbs

    • goodlife wannabes
    • By goodlife wannabes 4th Apr 11, 3:34 PM
    • 51 Posts
    • 458 Thanks
    goodlife wannabes
    Hi Please put me down as £171.10 of March and £200 for April
    Last edited by goodlife wannabes; 04-04-2011 at 3:42 PM.
    MAR GC /£346
    The great, good and not so good bits about growing your dinner 2017
  • mfwin2019
    £25 over but because of Mr T DTD the cupboards are bulging - £210/£185
    MFiT2 no 184
    Starting at £181,869Target is £150,000 achieved £147,772
    MFiT3 no 20
    Start £147,772 - £96924 July 2015 target £90'000
    • nessie216
    • By nessie216 12th Apr 11, 2:21 PM
    • 839 Posts
    • 5,176 Thanks
    Total for March £141.94/£150

  • janie-h
    Hi all

    Sorry I am very late declaring for the month! Not been feeling too good

    Anyway, last spends of March were -
    C**p - £5.00
    L**l - £10.67
    Iland - £8.00
    BM - £8.25
    A**a - £6.50
    Local - £0.88

    Total £39.30 That added to my already high total takes me way over for March Will update my sig and hang head in shame

    Declaring £312.99 for March
  • jumblejack
    Turkey casserole in the slow cooker. Turkey drumstick was whoopsied to 50p and the veggies were whoopsied last night for 5, 8 and 10p.

    Enough for tea tonight and tomorrow.

    Just had the free Campbell's soup (last tin!) with whoopsied bread toasted and spread with lurpak from the last offer.

    Not too bad. Only £5.61 so far this week

    Every moment is a gift. That's why we call it the present.!
    Grocery Spend Weekly Challenge (Sat-Fri):£30.50/£40
    • mmmsnow
    • By mmmsnow 11th Jul 12, 8:02 PM
    • 377 Posts
    • 1,227 Thanks
    Thanks, guys. I think I'll make the coconut macaroons and some lemon poppy seed gf muffins.

    While the cakes look fab, they would be difficult to transport and eat. I'll keep them in mind, though, for next time I'm entertaining
  • suburbanwifey
    Well dinner tonight was a sucess It was a "what have I got that I can make a meal out of" meal

    Bacon and Veg Risotto.

    I melted some butter in a pan and bunged in some butternut squash cut into small squares (half left over from another meal in the week). Threw in some finely chopped leeks (found them in the back of the fridge looking the worst for wear, don't know how old they were [blush].) A chopped onion that had seen better days, bashed about a bit. Some garlic. Some button mushrooms left over from something last week. Some chopped bacon slices left over from another meal. Fried it all off. Add another good chunk of butter and melted it through. Bunged in a packet of risotto rice. Stirred it for a minute or two. Chucked it in the SC, poured on 1ltr of veg stock. Left it in the SC for an hour or so, until the liquid had been absorbed and the flavours had nicely come together.

    So a lot of chucking and bunging but it seemed to work. I have enough to go in the freezer for another 2/3 meals. My DH will either take them to work for lunch or they will be used at the end of the month for pot luck dinners if money is tight.
    Originally posted by tigerfeet2006
    I just found this recipe by chance (searching for something else) and its grabbed my attention! and I've just checked the fridge and I do have some bacon in there, no leeks though, but onions and a whole manner of things I can *chuck* in, so I'm making it. Thanks for inspiring me x
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