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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 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'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 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 84
    • sistercas
    • By sistercas 24th Feb 12, 2:35 PM
    • 4,841 Posts
    • 58,664 Thanks
    Ooh, if you find a good bargain, can you share?! I've been thinking about cooking my own ham for sandwiches for a while, but I'm absolutely rubbish at cutting with a knife !
    Originally posted by PennyGrabber
    will do , havent looked around yet , hoping they're not too expensive
    • baroley
    • By baroley 24th Feb 12, 2:53 PM
    • 39 Posts
    • 545 Thanks
    Please put me down for 260 again for March.

    Thank you!
    Grocery challenge month runs from 25th to 24th
    January 100. 96.20
    February 100. 1.64
    • Bikingbint
    • By Bikingbint 24th Feb 12, 3:12 PM
    • 51 Posts
    • 1,131 Thanks
    i like your thinking

    i might look into a meat slicer as my slices are quite thick even with the electric knife
    Originally posted by sistercas
    I bought a meat slicer from Lakeland, the best money I have spent for a long time, worth every penny. All joints go so much further with thinner slices, the machine I have can do wafer thin which is great is stretching the joint to another meal.
  • mi jardin
    I have made my first purchases for March, I spent 9.79. I did buy a few storecupboard bits like marg, oats and fabric softener as I had vouchers (from the voucher board), plus everyday bits and pieces.
    Have a lovely weekend everyone!

  • Ninno820
    Afternoon everyone - I am just popping in to report that I have spent 2 on chocolate. Befor yu gasp in horror - my defence is that it is Tesco cheapie and is to make a large chocolate fudge cake for work on monday. A friend was popping into Mr T last night and I thought that it would be cheaper to ask them to fetch it for me than to be tempted!.

    So - 2 days into March and the budget is already 6.
    44 day challenge

    1. Pay 650 off overdraft ( 288/ 650)
    2. Lose 12 lbs (4.5/ 12)
    3. Use YNAB everyday (6/44)
    • carolinerunner
    • By carolinerunner 24th Feb 12, 4:23 PM
    • 495 Posts
    • 6,305 Thanks
    elsiepac, the manure burns make the legs look yellow like smokers' fingers! Any red or purple marks are bruising, sometimes caused by overcrowded birds pecking each other, also to be avoided obviously.

    greent, have you tried shredded newspapers for gp bedding? seems to work ok for rabbits...

    Happy Friday all!
    Erratically money saving
  • supersally01
    Please may I be put down for 250 for march. Thanks to all who post and run the thread.
    Started March already, as been paid and was so over for Feb. Hopefully 250 is a more realistic figure this month.
    Some spends to add from today.
    M&S 7.48 All YS, and already batch cooked my mince into Spag Bol, and in the freezer.
    Home Bargains 14.82, Should avoid that shop, as I always spend loads, on crisps and chocolate!
    ASDA 6. Cheese, Bread, Butter.
    Will now update siggi, and catch up on posts.
    Have a great weekend everyone!

    • Winchelsea
    • By Winchelsea 24th Feb 12, 4:34 PM
    • 691 Posts
    • 9,316 Thanks
    I have spent all my allowance of 65 for this month, but this is because I've done a lot of bulk buys, so I'm going to stick my neck out and say that I'm going to manage on 40 for March.

    Won't be easy, but this is a challenge after all. And the cupboards are stocked! I'm hoping not to have to start using next month's allowance until 1st, by making meals from what I have to hand.

    Best of luck to everyone else!

    Oh, and I forgot to say, I estimate that my sum to live on is 7000 this year.
    Last edited by Winchelsea; 24-02-2012 at 4:37 PM.
    Keeping three cats, the car and myself on a small budget, and enjoying life while we're at it!
  • Ninno820
    Elsiepac - just had to tell you - I am soooo giddy with excitement - I have taught myself to add drop down lists on you spreadsheet so that my different meals are there to choose from. Thnakyou for giving me a cost free frugalistic new to play to play with!!
    44 day challenge

    1. Pay 650 off overdraft ( 288/ 650)
    2. Lose 12 lbs (4.5/ 12)
    3. Use YNAB everyday (6/44)
  • mh2361
    Suffolk lass thank you so much for the support.
    MBNA862/0 :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/
    • mrs-moneypenny
    • By mrs-moneypenny 24th Feb 12, 4:48 PM
    • 15,518 Posts
    • 198,189 Thanks
    going to do as frugal as possible shop tomorrow so listing the contents of cupborad and freezer tonight and melas planning

    tonight its pasta with broc and mushrooms

    haave a good weekeend all
    SPC~12 ot 124

    In a world that has decided that it's going to lose its mind, be more kind my friend, try to Be More Kind
    • mon1o
    • By mon1o 24th Feb 12, 5:35 PM
    • 739 Posts
    • 1,355 Thanks
    hi all! Im new to this - can i join? love the idea!! I'll be starting for March today (payday today!) pop me down for 200 for March please

    Thankyou x
    • PennyGrabber
    • By PennyGrabber 24th Feb 12, 5:58 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 22,438 Thanks
    I think I'm just being naive here as I really don't buy meat that often, but what do you mean by skin burns on legs? I first assumed it was something to do with how they were reared, but then realised they are FR, so I'm completely confused!

    Now down to 4 bread rolls in the freezer... (I made 8)... I had mine for lunch, but then mum and dad both broke their diets tonight with a cheese and onion roll each... I had two out on the side for me for the next couple of days and they haven't got any bread in due to this stupid no carb diet, so of course I gave them my rolls. So took one from freezer to defrost to have with my Sweet Pepper and Tomato Soup for lunch tomorrow, leaving the 4. Feel slightly cheated after all that kneading! I SOOOOOOO want a bread maker!

    True NSD for me today which was nice

    Night all

    Originally posted by elsiepac
    Do you know you can use the dough hooks on a hand held whisk to knead bread? I use them for making pizza dough all the time, and I use them for bread if I don't want to use my breadmaker.

    Elsiepac - just had to tell you - I am soooo giddy with excitement - I have taught myself to add drop down lists on you spreadsheet so that my different meals are there to choose from. Thnakyou for giving me a cost free frugalistic new to play to play with!!
    Originally posted by Ninno820
    I love that my new word has taken off so well!!

    For my dinner tonight, I had lo fish pie, followed by a nobbly bobbly - I figured as I'm trying to use things up from the freezer, then it was my duty to eat it!

    Will either be shopping tonight or tomorrow for the coming week. I'm over my Feb budget already though, but I set my monthly budget deliberately lower than 1/12th of the year's budget.

    Just coming to the end of a loo roll, so now my stash has gone down to two! (Think that one lasted around a week!!)

    I really like the idea of putting '4 veg' on the shopping list - I'm going to do that from now on. Speaking of veg, I got 14 carrots from work today, and 6 bananas. I have already peeled and chopped the carrots, and laid them on a baking tray in the freezer. I will bag them up tonight, and that'll be about 3 or 4 weeks' worth of carrots! Result!

    Off now to check the te$co dtd thread, to see what I can buy tonight...

    PG x
    Grocery challenge for family of three - me, dd(12) and ds(11), feeding dp 2 or 3 x a week too. Only food, not toiletries. Jan 87.97/100 Feb 0/100
    Frugal 2018 needed! Saving and NOT spending
  • Sazdaz
    Finished Feb challenge now and ended up 1.20 over at a total of 111.20, going for 110 again for March. Mr S just dropped off shopping as had a Free delivery voucher and the only thing missing was mince so have to purchase that but shop came to 50. 38 so 60 left for the extra bits during the month which isnt bad.
    APR NSD - 0/10
    Paid off in 2013 so far 125.00
    April Money made - 18.00
  • bodmin789
    [QUOTE=Cool Nanna;51305387]Yesterday I had some bits and bobs in the bottom of the fridge to use up and fancied a quiche but couldn't be bothered to mess about making some pastry so I made a quiche without pastry, it was really tasty and less calories. I also made some potato wedges for the first time and will definately being doing those again.

    I'm a bit like that with pastry, all the rolling out and mess. We used to have an American sandwich lady, and she used to sell lovely quiche, with no crust, but what she did was make the pastry to the point where she'd rubbed all the butter in, then add the eggs the rest of the filling and mix it all together and then cook it in the normal way - absolutely lovely and very quick and relatively mess free
    • 666paw
    • By 666paw 24th Feb 12, 6:25 PM
    • 330 Posts
    • 2,481 Thanks
    More spends to declare.

    I had a crisp craving yesterday and today didn't take in any lunch so thats another 4.60 gone. I must do better next week.

    MFI3 T3 # 75
    • linz4383
    • By linz4383 24th Feb 12, 6:27 PM
    • 287 Posts
    • 4,276 Thanks
    There are two of the recipes that I do in the Recipe Collection. Give me a second and I will go and find them.

    My computer has just crashed so I am on my phone and can't link. There is a Peanut Butter biscuit with no flour which is lush, just four ingredients and can be made and cooked in half an hour. Also a ginger biscuit is very scrummy and I do a plain biscuit as well. I'll have a look later when I am up and running again. If they are not there I'll post them up for you.
    Originally posted by tigerfeet2006
    thankyou ill have another look in the recipe collection see if i can see them! i couldnt when i look earlier
    House deposit 0/10000
    Loan 6,065.43- 5803.30
    credit card 3,932.25 - 4233.40
    • nicknack
    • By nicknack 24th Feb 12, 6:51 PM
    • 89 Posts
    • 1,861 Thanks
    Hi everyone,

    It's a new month for me for 24th Feb - 29th March so I'm going to aim for 200 again, even though I went over for Feb - I'll just have to try a bit harder this month!

    I've been away with work for 3 days and have been enjoying big brekkie's in the hotel (yum yum), including loads of fresh fruit (all pre chopped fruit salad style) and I've decided I'd like to have this for brekkie at home too, as I'm rubbish at getting my 5 a day. The thing is though, I have to be at work really early so wouldn't have time to chop it up so would have to do a load at a time and keep it in the fridge - does anyone know how long it would keep if I did this, before it started going brown and yukky?

    Well done to everyone who has made their budget this month and good luck to everyone for next month. x

  • WelshWoofer
    Its the last shop of the month for me this weekend and after writing a list I ripped it up again as I realised I was just buying what I always buy not what I actually need.
    I'm aiming for 10 for the week this time - the freezer is full and I only need some fresh bits (mostly fruit) and cheese and some breakfast bars for work.

    I'm going to try for 100 for March - its 4 shops for me and 25 a week. Its doable if I try hard!
    January grocery spending - 82.73/ 120
  • FairyLight
    Hiya all!

    Can OH and I join in again for March please? We're planning a storecupboard month so setting an unrealistic low target of 40 for fresh topups!

    MW House Deposit Pot (1000/20000)
    Rainy day savings (3000/6000)
    GC Feb 2012 (60.02/150)
    Gifts money spent / actual value 2012 (56.98 / 160.98)
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