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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 25th Dec 10, 1:15 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    • #1
    • 25th Dec 10, 1:15 AM
    25th Dec 10 at 1:15 AM
    Hi Everyone,

    Welcome to the first Grocery Challenge of 2011, a new decade and a new beginning!

    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 December 2010 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 and #7 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month and may I take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy New Year! Hope it's a good one for all of us.

    Last edited by Pink.; 29-12-2010 at 9:09 AM.
Page 3
    • Sunnyday
    • By Sunnyday 29th Dec 10, 2:51 PM
    • 3,892 Posts
    • 34,008 Thanks
    Hi everyone

    My food budget for January will be 100 and the pet food budget will be 40 please MrsM. My January budget is from December 25th to January 22nd as its now determined by my pay day

    We still have tons of stuff in that i bought to see us through the snowy weeks when we couldn`t get out to do a proper shop so we shall be making a start on some of that. I also plan to spend less on food this year than last year - hope the prices don`t increase like they have done this year or we`ll starve

    We also plan to grow more veg in the garden so fingers crossed for a nice summer for a change

    Thanks to Rosieben, Pink and Mrs M for all the work that you put into the GC for us.

    Have a happy and frugal new year everyone

    Planning on starting the GC again soon
    • nickynoo08
    • By nickynoo08 29th Dec 10, 2:55 PM
    • 1,835 Posts
    • 17,030 Thanks
    Hi everyone can i join in please.

    I dipped in and out of this challenge last yr but want to start the new year on the right foot. We normally spend anything between 160 and 200 every 4 weeks, we are a family of 4 including a fussy 4yr old and a not at all fussy 9month old. Now my 9mnth old is eating pretty much what we eat albeit mashed i'm hoping i can shave a few more quid off our monthly bill. Ideally i want to get our bill around 120 four weekly, thats to include everything. We're fairly well stocked in the nappy and wipe dept, i've got plenty of toiletries and OH got some for xmas so we shouldn't be needing any of them for a while. I know it's gonna be a challenge but i think it should be doable. Anyhoo my 4wks has already started (runs 22/12 -19/01) and i've set my self a budget of 140, spent 51 so far and got my next shop coming on the 4th. i'll need milk, bread and yogs before then but not much else as we've still got loads in.
    Right i'll stop waffling now and declare this months budget as 140 please
    Debt 1 1111.23 0% until March 19 pay by xmas 0/1111.23
    Debt 2 2100 0% until August 19
    Debt 3 2161.86 0% until August 19
    Debt 4 1846.98 0% until December 19
    Saving for xmas 5/120
    1 debt at a time! We can do this!!
  • wssla00
    Afternoon all hope you are all well.

    I have put in my orders for this months meat and food from waitrose. Will update my spends once they arrive. Hoping for a quiet month with no unexpected spends.

    It's my birthday in two weeks so will make a nice dinner rather than going out. Mum has kindly given me a very generous gift so wondering what I should spend it on. At Christmas she bought me everything I could have asked for including a tall freezer so don't need anything there.

    I may treat myself to something nice from the Emma Bridgewater sale... perhaps.... oh I don't know lol!

    Have a good day all
    Feb GC: 200 Spent: 190.79
  • ~moneysavingnovice~
    I'm declaring 402 for Dec, 38 under budget.

    Pledging a much more thrifty 245 for Jan, though will not be going shopping again til the 6th now.
    Mortgage148,725 Student loan13,050 HSBC loan12,221
    • prophecy_grrl
    • By prophecy_grrl 29th Dec 10, 3:11 PM
    • 668 Posts
    • 3,379 Thanks
    Hi I'm firmly back on the budgetting and meal planning wagon for 2011. Please can I try for 200 for January, this is for food, nappies and pet food for me, DH, DS aged 2 and our cat.

    *toddles off to update sig
    *** PROPHECY_GRRL***
    *** DEBT FREE AS OF 17/10/11 - I DID IT!!! ***
  • salski
    I would love to join in with this, but I am aware that when Baby arrives, our budet will have to increase. She is due in Feb but for month Jan - please can I have a budget of 280
    Kind regards
    Sally x
    Oooh meant to add - this is for me and DH and a doggy and 2 bunnies. This seems so excessive compared to everyone elses food budget so Im hoping to cut this back drastically! I really thought our budget was low - clearly Im living in cloud cuckoo! Sal x
    Last edited by salski; 29-12-2010 at 9:52 PM.
    Loan finished Sep 2010 - HSBC CC - WAS 750 now 0! Natwest CC - WAS 1600 now 100 - Overdraughts to be worked on! WILL be debt free by mid 2011!!!
    2000 Saved so far for maternity leave - Our baby girl arrived valentines day! Elsie Ann - WELCOME
    Sealed pot challenge number 4 - number 1167 - Last day smoking: 8/1/2011
    • dumpling
    • By dumpling 29th Dec 10, 3:42 PM
    • 1,729 Posts
    • 24,042 Thanks
    Hi, I would love to join in if I may with a budget of 400 for the month. This is for 2 adults (who need to lose a few pounds), 3 children, 2 cats and a hungry dog. I'll run my month from the 1st to the 31st.

    Hope everyone has a successful start to their year.
    Last edited by dumpling; 29-12-2010 at 3:44 PM.

    • CRANKY40
    • By CRANKY40 29th Dec 10, 3:54 PM
    • 3,351 Posts
    • 36,576 Thanks
    I have done my budget for 2011 and it will be a close run thing between income/outgoings. The building work is finished for the moment, and I think I have myself organised at last, so I'd like to rejoin the grocery challenge if that's alright. I've budgeted 50 a week, but anything left over will be used to fund Christmas and birthdays, so coming in under budget would be good. There's myself, one house elf (ds aged 6) and 2 who didn't eat much until dustbin cat arrived, but who now feels the need to choke her dinner down quickly before dustbin cat gets it and then there's dustbin's a feline garbage disposal. All food/toiletries/cat food etc is included in this total.

    This month is a 5 week month for me, so my budget is 250.
  • rachelww1
    I like to join in too please. I know I seriously overspend in this area but it's something I drastically need to work on to make a dent in my debt mountain.

    Could you put me down for 400 for the month please. This is for food, alcohol, toiletries, cleaning products, pyjama pants and pet food. This is for 2 adults, 2 children (though one of them is only with us every other weekend) a large dog and a cat. I'm starting a spending diary on 1st Jan, so hopefully will be able to budget a bit better next month (budget was not part of my vocabulary before this month )
    LBM Dec 10. Total unsecured debt 41176 Nov 12 Debt Free Thanks Mum x RIP x

    2013 Savings 250
    2013 OP 3500
    • catznine
    • By catznine 29th Dec 10, 4:20 PM
    • 3,187 Posts
    • 24,544 Thanks
    Hi! Please can you put me down for 150 this month (30 a week) trying to live off stores and will just need some fresh fruit and veg (org box delivery every 2 weeks) and some milk and pet food. 2 adults here and 1 little dog so hopefully can do it.
    Our days are happier when we give people a bit of our heart rather than a piece of our mind.

    Jan grocery challenge 35.77/120
    • blissfullydebtfreewannabe
    • By blissfullydebtfreewannabe 29th Dec 10, 4:27 PM
    • 118 Posts
    • 2,708 Thanks
    Hello everyone,

    I would like to join please. Can I put us down for 100 for January 2011. This is for 2 adults and 1 very hungry cat, and I hope to reduce this further next month after checking out all your fantastic ideas on this thread. Wishing everyone every success for 2011
    • Mumof2
    • By Mumof2 29th Dec 10, 5:02 PM
    • 2,683 Posts
    • 40,984 Thanks
    Hi, please can you put me down as 350 for January for me and DH, plus our 2 children aged 8 and 4.
    • muffin man 7
    • By muffin man 7 29th Dec 10, 5:04 PM
    • 742 Posts
    • 7,753 Thanks
    muffin man 7
    Hope everyone had a good christmas, december challenge didn't go as well as i'd hoped impossible to declare as i don't have all receipts so will just leave it at that and start again for 2011 CAN IGO WITH 120.00 PLEASE MRS M THANKS
    I don't want to set my target too low but don't want it too high so if i start in the middle i should do ok this is food only, as i stockpiled toiletries and cleaning stuff and i'm still working my way through them atm i will be attempting to sort out my debts in 2011 i've never been in this situation before so i want to get them paid as quick as possible hopefully by end of 2011 at the latest
    2nd purse challenge no0400 Sealed pot challenge ???? 2 trolley find not counting small coins till end year
  • EllieA
    Eek Ok had a horrible year last year... spent much of our time with our head in the sand hoping our debt would just go away. We finally got our act together and sorted it unfortunatly christmas had to go on the credit cards.. eek.

    This year it's all change, as i start my new job in january unfortuantly it mean's comming to terms with being a single income family.

    Aim for this year is to clear the christmas debt before spending on anything new or extravigant. No meals out, clothes etc and to learn to live within our new lower budget.

    Can i be put down for an Annual Budget of 3000 please. Thats 2600 (50 per week) + a 400 birthday/christmas 2011 top up. I'll be drawing out the 50 in cash each week so i can see exactly where it go's and any leftovers will be popped into the Christmas 2011 tin.

    • jammy dodger
    • By jammy dodger 29th Dec 10, 5:57 PM
    • 1,112 Posts
    • 5,384 Thanks
    jammy dodger
    hi to one and all

    i would love to start the year on the right foot and join the grocery challenge, my DD goes back to uni on the 9th leaving just myself and my DS dog and cat , would like to put a budget of 160 please and see how we get on from there
    many thanks
    jammy dodger
    • franby64
    • By franby64 29th Dec 10, 6:00 PM
    • 894 Posts
    • 10,920 Thanks
    Good Evening

    I have decided to go annual this (next) year for a change so Mrs M, please could you put me down for 5200 for 2011. I really want to try hard and make some progress this year so hopefully will spend less than this - it seems a lot even for 2 adults and 3 teenagers.
    Anyway, I make it roughly 433 per month so I'll work to that. I feel a complicated signature coming on!! I'll do it tomorrow!

    Thanks again to Mrs M, Pinkwinged and Rosieben for running the thread.
    Hope everybody has had a good Christmas - I'll go and catch up now and see you in the new year!

    ETA - Mrs M - well done again on your weight-loss - it's brilliant. I had sworn off SW but now I'm wavering again!!
    Last edited by franby64; 29-12-2010 at 6:48 PM.
    Starting weight on 22/6 14st 00lbs. Weight on 15/2 10st 11lbs. Lost 3st 3lbs.Target 9st 12lbs. 13lbs left.
    • elf06
    • By elf06 29th Dec 10, 6:05 PM
    • 1,498 Posts
    • 15,140 Thanks
    Wow 3 pages already and its not even January lol

    Thanks as always to the lovely ladies who keep us right and thanks again for changing me to annual from monthly. I will try and stick to a monthly budget in my head and will be keeping totals on my outgoings spreadsheet so should be able to keep up to date. My month will start on Jan 1st although I think I will declare now for Dec as I dont need anything else between now and Saturday..............

    Aug GC - 88.17/130
    NSD - target 18 days, so far 5!!
    • Miss Piggy
    • By Miss Piggy 29th Dec 10, 6:38 PM
    • 3,621 Posts
    • 32,563 Thanks
    Miss Piggy
    Hello all!

    I'm determined that 2011 is going to be the year I get my spending under control. And groceries is a huge outlay in this house.

    I'm going to experiment with different cuts of meat (very proud of myself - just bought chicken thighs instead of breasts for a curry in the week!) and will try and use up everything I have. Am disgusted with how much we waste!

    Please could my budget be 170 for January (for myself, OH, 5 year old and 2 stepkids every other weekend)

    Thank you!

    Miss P
    **Keep Calm and Carry On!**
    • unhappy_shopper
    • By unhappy_shopper 29th Dec 10, 6:48 PM
    • 1,294 Posts
    • 7,062 Thanks
    Please put me down for Jan GC 200

    Thank you
    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
    • gillian62
    • By gillian62 29th Dec 10, 6:57 PM
    • 371 Posts
    • 1,280 Thanks
    200 please for January for 4 adults, 1 12yr old, 2 dogs & 4 cats. I have been working on 75 per week budget before, but want to spend Jan working through my freezer and store cupboards. I will then use any extra to stock up on other items. I have just sorted through my cupboards and can't believe how much pasta/sugar/flour/casserole mix beans I have got. Freezer full of fruit from summer - so may take some out to make jam, as I don't have any room at all to put stuff in.
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