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    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 13th Oct 14, 12:54 PM
    • 9,342Posts
    • 17,879Thanks
    February 2018 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 13th Oct 14, 12:54 PM
    February 2018 Grocery Challenge 13th Oct 14 at 12:54 PM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the second Grocery Challenge of 2018 !!!!

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

    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.
    By request, here is Spiggles wonderful helpful post

    We all have different budgets that suit our households. The most important thing to remember is that you set yours according to your needs and finances. It can take time to get to where you want to be too so don't knock yourself out if you go over in the first few months. We are here to support each other and it is not a competition.

    I thought it might help to outline where we've come from and the top tips I've learned.

    When we started in March 2010 we had spent in excess of £600 in the previous month. This had to stop, (there's only me and him and our two beautiful black cats) something which thankfully my OH completely agreed with so I have been lucky that he has been on board from the start. He gave me his debit card voluntarily and I still keep hold of it until he needs to get something for the home. At the same time we set up a system of pocket money (pm) at £15 each per week which doesn't count towards the GC and which we can each spend as we wish with no comebacks or complaints. OH predominantly uses his pm on his beer and I ferret mine away mostly.

    The next step was to set up my own spreadsheet which is absolutely simple onto which I put all spends so that I have a continuous running total for the month and for the year. We initially set our budget at £280 per month and brought it down to £240 where it resides for most of the year it is occasionally increased to allow for extras e.g. Christmas to £260.

    The important 'tools' we found greatly helped and continue to do so now are:

    Stocktake cupboards, fridge, freezer - make lists and ensure that the older products get used up first. You'll be amazed at what you find squirrelled away and it will help with your shopping list as you'll realise that you don't actually need so much.

    Before you go shopping check staples - running out of milk, bread, butter, etc often leads to going into a shop for one thing and coming out £20 lighter. Always check these and if they'll run out tomorrow buy them the same time as getting other things.

    Always make a shopping list and stick to it - the supermarkets (sm) try every which way to get us to spend so having a list and strong resolve is the only way to beat them.

    Keep every receipt - and then note it down on your spreadsheet/spend diary so that you always know where you are.

    When tempted, ask yourself do you NEED it or just WANT it - now this advice goes with two things. Firstly, the things you see in store when shopping that APPEAR to be bargains - if you hadn't planned spending the money then its not a bargain. Secondly, the sm send us loads of vouchers for £X off a spend of £XX - if you had no NEED to spend £XX then have you SAVED anything???

    Use my supermarket to compare prices (limited to four of the biggies) - The site may be used to actually do an online shop at whichever of the big four offers the best value or, if you have the time and sm availability, to make up lists for visiting each of the stores so that you can purchase all you need at different stores thus getting the best possible value. (I'd add, do a 'shop' virtually on this site and take the list you create on it with you, whichever one you shop at, it will help keep target prices in your head and allow you to spot bargains. MrM is not included but you can do a virtual list on their website so you know what you're going to be spending.)

    Always have a list - this is just as important when shopping online as shopping on foot.

    Use Approved Foods online (with a list!) - if you don't mind out of date things (ood) or you can search for only in date items. The only drawback is storing the goods as far as I can tell. Oh, and watch the delivery as it's done on a scaled charge for weight so keep an eye on it. You can of course do an AF order with friends, family, colleagues or like minded neighbours. Other GCers use Big Br*nds 4 Less too.

    Invest in a breadmaker - we have saved so much by making our own bread. The prices in the shops are extortionate for bread these days. There's loads of advice on this thread and others in the forum on this.

    Use the recipe lists - always posted at the front of a new thread. There are fantastic, tasty, healthy and economical recipes to use on them and there are a number of other threads on the forum such as Weezl's that will help you to eat well on a budget.

    Shop locally - the local greengrocer (or preferably market but I don't have one ) is usually cheaper as an option for fruit and veg (f&v) than the sm. Often the prices may look the same but when you look at the quantity for the same price the greengrocer will be cheaper. The same goes for the local butcher. Often you will have far more variety of meat available, advice on how to cook a particular meat can be offered and there is (for me at least) no comparison in terms of quality. We buy our huge FR eggs there and I'm yet to find an equivalent FR egg in a sm at the same or lower price. Obvioulsy if you have your own chicks/know someone who has chicks you can get them even cheaper again.

    Grow your own - it's quite simple to grow some f&v at home even if it's only in pots on the patio. There are also supportive threads on the forum for this.

    Cook your own - making meals at home from ingredients is far more economical, often tastes better than shop bought and is probably far better healthwise.

    Meal Plan - this is something that others can advise on as we don't do it. I have a tremendous capacity for eating the same food over many days but presented in slightly different form. For example, we could buy £7 worth of brisket from the butchers and eat it as pot roast for a couple of days, sliced for sarnies, sliced with a salad, chucked into a casserole or shredded up and fried as crispy beef.

    Don't waste food - either only make what you need or use any leftovers for other meals/creations or freeze it for another day.

    Withdraw the cash you want to spend - and keep it in a separate purse. This can be particularly effective as you have the money in front of you reducing rather than spending with plastic which is so easy to lose track of. Very useful when you first start out.

    Don't go to the shops to browse - this can only lead to pain and hardship!!!

    Keep posting and reading the thread - there really is no better supportive, wise and inspirational place to be! I think I saw that somebody mentioned forgetting to read/post. I get around this by using the Advanced button to post, below the window where your text is displayed you will see Additional Options. In the Thread Subscription box use the dropdown to select either instant email notification (this is what I use) or daily email notification before you submit your latest post. Then you will get an email into your inbox from which you can click to the thread to see what others are saying.

    Always remember the sm is not your friend - it wants to profit from you and take as much of your money as it can coerce out of you!

    So, there you go as a starting point. Others on here will offer tremendous advice on meal planning. And don't forget, the only silly question is the one you didn't ask!

    See you all later,
    For quidelines on posting in this thread please read the second post in this thread.

    For the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #4 to #10 this thread (the list is growing!!!!!)

    For everyones totals, see post #3 on this thread

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Last edited by zippychick; 18-01-2018 at 7:51 PM.
    I'm a Board Guide of Old Style MoneySaving, The Northern Ireland board,How Much Have you Saved? and Martin's Blogs.
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Page 14
    • Zed42
    • By Zed42 9th Feb 18, 8:24 PM
    • 899 Posts
    • 5,621 Thanks
    Good evening all

    I'm a bit behind (nothing new there!) and have just totted up our amounts for January and my aim for Jan was £750 to include groceries and takeaways, including lunches, pet food, toiletries, cleaning products and healthcare items. Well, I'm pleased to say that we came in at £670

    So, I'm setting our target for February to being:


    Which given DH and I are on a bit of "health kick" should help us avoid some of the takeaways, which is where the majority of the spends go and the calories come in.

    GC - Jan -

    • Mrs Cheshire
    • By Mrs Cheshire 9th Feb 18, 8:50 PM
    • 813 Posts
    • 8,384 Thanks
    Mrs Cheshire
    Popped to Mr T's for paracetamol and Ibuprofen as I had a headache, ended up buying chocolate, ice creams and sweets for my sons. Not too worried as I only spent £4.19, could have easily spent that on the paracetamol and Ibuprofen if I'd bought them from the corner shop or bought branded items.
    SPC #148 2014-£25 2015-£5.50 My stars from Sue-UU

    Grocery Challenge 2018
    Jan £400.33/£400 Feb £383.02/£400 Mar £392.60/£370 Apr £211.17/£400
    • This times for keeps!
    • By This times for keeps! 9th Feb 18, 9:59 PM
    • 14 Posts
    • 85 Thanks
    This times for keeps!
    Managed to lock myself out of my account so haven't been able to update. Last week we went through the cupboards and fridge and freezer and managed to get through the week on thirty pounds, I did an online shop earlier which came to just over £50 so I'm thinking of leaving it for now and go through the cupboards again as another really frugal week would be good.
    It's not your salary that makes you rich - it's your spending habits!
    After a life time of debt now's the time to finally break free once and for all
    Saving money makes me happy.

    Pay all your debts 2018 #26
    • Highland Fling
    • By Highland Fling 10th Feb 18, 8:52 AM
    • 44 Posts
    • 600 Thanks
    Highland Fling
    Good morning everyone
    I have to go to shop today but I have my list ready and will hopefully not buy anything extra. I plan to go to small shops rather than supermarket. I think less time spent in shops means less temptation.

    Hi Tighteningthebelt I don't quite live in the highlands but it is very rural and very beautiful and as you say very cold at this time of year.
    I agree that friendships are very important and a cuppa is a small price to pay. If nothing else this challenge has made me more self aware of my spending.

    Planning to clear out, clean and organise fridge today. Probably make some soup with bits and bobs of veg lurking in there. Love my soup maker. Just fling everything in and walk away. Have made some really nice mixed vegetable soups made from veg I used to throw out. Even rubber carrots are no longer safe.

    Good luck everyone for this weekend.
    • ceb1995
    • By ceb1995 10th Feb 18, 10:17 AM
    • 233 Posts
    • 536 Thanks
    Spent 5.45 on pizza as a treat yesterday so now on £49.51/£180, going to do a weekly shop later we've got some ys stuff left in the freezer so hoping to come under £40.
    Current mortgage balance: 141,197.82
    original end date: 12th march 2058
    End date goal: 12th march 2045
    • SilverBird
    • By SilverBird 10th Feb 18, 11:07 AM
    • 244 Posts
    • 2,036 Thanks
    Spend of £41.34 today at A5da.
    #Life isn't about waiting for the storms to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain #We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us #If you focus on what you have left behind, you will never see what lies ahead - Gusteau/Ratatouille
    GC: Mar £174.78/£180 (£415.41/£2,160)
    • ceb1995
    • By ceb1995 10th Feb 18, 1:34 PM
    • 233 Posts
    • 536 Thanks
    Weekly shop done for £31.46, so we re on £80.97/£180.
    Current mortgage balance: 141,197.82
    original end date: 12th march 2058
    End date goal: 12th march 2045
    • ScotinLondon
    • By ScotinLondon 10th Feb 18, 3:06 PM
    • 321 Posts
    • 3,747 Thanks
    £26.72 spent these last two days. £8.95 of which was at Costco for lots & lots of porridge.

    So far spent £64.79/£130.

    Only buying food etc when actually needed & going without if not.
    D17/J18 £75.27; J/F18 £64.79; F/M £124.01; M/A £40.05/£130.00
    CCC - £26.00
    Lunch2work 14/20 J18; 10/19 F18; 3/17 A18
    GNSD 18/31 J18; 15/28 F18; 7/31 M18; 7/30A18
    • This times for keeps!
    • By This times for keeps! 10th Feb 18, 7:16 PM
    • 14 Posts
    • 85 Thanks
    This times for keeps!
    Feeling accomplished!
    Feeling very productive and quite proud of myself today, I decided to see what I could make out of what we have in before going shopping. Today I have made;

    6 portions fish pie
    6 portions Spanish chicken
    8 portions quorn chilli
    8 portions sausage casserole
    6 portions quiche
    12 potato cakes
    4 portions turkey curry
    2 large steak and vegetable pies (8 portions)

    Tomorrow I am going to make a meatloaf, some type of vegetable soup and some portions of colcannon. I'll probably make some sweet things too - flapjacks and maybe even a victoria sponge. I'm shattered now though lol I need to make a list of what I need for the rest of the week but feel sure I must have made a difference to this weeks grocery spend!
    It's not your salary that makes you rich - it's your spending habits!
    After a life time of debt now's the time to finally break free once and for all
    Saving money makes me happy.

    Pay all your debts 2018 #26
    • Mrs Cheshire
    • By Mrs Cheshire 10th Feb 18, 8:37 PM
    • 813 Posts
    • 8,384 Thanks
    Mrs Cheshire
    NSD for me today, took lunch and drinks out with us and remembered to get the meat out to defrost this morning.
    SPC #148 2014-£25 2015-£5.50 My stars from Sue-UU

    Grocery Challenge 2018
    Jan £400.33/£400 Feb £383.02/£400 Mar £392.60/£370 Apr £211.17/£400
    • MadamMim2013
    • By MadamMim2013 10th Feb 18, 9:59 PM
    • 507 Posts
    • 6,253 Thanks
    Have my list ready, not made it to L*dls yet though
    I'm just feeling rubbish and unmotivated..
    Called in local shop and spent £8.49 on nonsense really.. Did get a ys enchilada kit..
    Still, I need to do a proper shop & avoid the extras! Fingers crossed I'll feel well enough tomorrow
    Living life happily! Debt Free date: 2018!!!
    Jan 18 GC Feb 18 GC Mar 18 GC Apr 18 GC: £277.55/£300
    • purpleybat
    • By purpleybat 10th Feb 18, 11:06 PM
    • 336 Posts
    • 2,882 Thanks
    why oh why do I do it?
    shopping on a Saturday is pure murder.
    i'd run out of veg and sarnie fillings so decided to bite the bullet and go and get it done, so after dosing up on horse-style painkillers off with my trusty pink flowery trolley off I went.
    well, it rained non-stop and I was soaked, in pain and miserable before I even got in the shop. I found as usual i'd left my shopping list on the stove top so tried to be good but i'm afraid too many treats 'fell' into my shopping trolley.
    I was planning on spending about £20 but my very soggy receipt (it was in my coat pocket and I was drenched) tells me I spent ££27.81 so not as bad as it could be.
    I did pick up a leaflet from lidl tho and it tells me that my favourite leek swirly pastries are in on thurs
    gc 2017 £1841.27.
    2018 jan £124.69/£130 feb £157.97/£150 mar £221.33/£200
    • JingsMyBucket
    • By JingsMyBucket 11th Feb 18, 8:30 AM
    • 169 Posts
    • 1,883 Thanks
    Sorry to hear about all the poorlies - i'm another one, i'm afraid. I smashed myself up bad, running for a bus on 1st February - the day my dry January ended actually, funny that. Anyway, been on 10 painkillers a day, not happy about that, not been able to walk, or use one arm, as put my shoulder out, so no spends,...
    Originally posted by Save Dosh
    Oh my gosh, SaveDosh, that's horrible. I'm just catching up with posts from the last few days and only just saw how tired, sick, and broken everyone is. I hope you all feel much better starting today.

    Yesterday was a NSD for me but I had bought some stuff on Friday, January 9th.

    €3.74 - potato chips and some Babybel at a shop when I was out because I needed a snack.

    €8.49 - two bags of chia seeds at my local Holland & Barrett. I'm going to start adding them to my yoghurts for more fiber and to keep me fuller longer. It was Buy One, Get the Second for €1. It's more expensive than what I had ordered for the UK collection in January, but I'll settle with this for now. They didn't have anything else I wanted that was on my list. I would have to get it delivered but I think I'll just wait until we go to the UK in March. There will probably be another sale by then.

    €28.97 - at Carrefour for some snack things for the guests we have this weekend and other stuff. A pork chop (ate that on Friday night); a smoked ham hock that I'll use for soups and for general gnawing; a fatty duck leg that was YS 30% off; toilet soap cakes that turn the water blue; 2 containers of blueberries; a container of strawberries; blackberries; hummus; red pesto for OH; composting bags; and some back up toilet paper, which I'm glad I bought!

    Totals So Far:
    €70.71 / €450
    6 NSD / 10 NSD

    I've also updated my sig. I think I'm doing pretty well and am staying out of the shops. OH bought two bottles of olive oil from the organic market on Friday which should last us through to the end of March. We were down to a few tablespoons in the current bottle. I won't count that in my total because that's stuff he's buying even though it's for the house.

    On Friday I realized that Holland & Barrett still hasn't refunded me for the order we never collected in January in London due to OH being so ill he cancelled his trip. It's been nearly two weeks now. Calling them is on my agenda for today since that's about €70 they owe me.

    As for meal plan, I have no idea what I'm going to cook this week for dinners/lunches. I think I've lost my cooking mojo. I may do a frittata with the last bits of the brussels sprouts I have which should also use up some cheese that's going off. Not sure about main meals though. We ate so much with our guests yesterday that it's kind of put me off eating and cooking I honestly think. Maybe I should just do soup as a way to reset my palate. I definitely need vegetables though. Sigh. I just may finally dedicate time today to inventorying my pantry and fridge to help spark some ideas.

    Returning to the totals I currently have, I think I may try to limit myself to €30/week for the next few weeks just to see if I can do it. That would be nice to have a cheap month. OH's nephew and his girlfriend are coming to visit in two weeks as well. I pretty well not buying too much for this set of guests that we won't eat and I'll try to carry forward for the next set.

    Have a good Sunday everyone! I may check back in later if I do some more shopping today for veg.
    APR 18 GC: €257.96/€400.00 // 10/10 NSD
    MAR 18 GC: €193.98/€400.00 // 17/10 NSD // £162.19/£150 UK stock up
    FEB 18 GC: €250.44/€450 and 15/10 NSD
    JAN 18 GC: €377.92/€550.00 // 8 NSD
    Dec 17 GC: €406.50/€350.00 // 11 NSD // £198.57/£200 UK stock up
    • JingsMyBucket
    • By JingsMyBucket 11th Feb 18, 8:32 AM
    • 169 Posts
    • 1,883 Thanks
    Have my list ready, not made it to L*dls yet though
    I'm just feeling rubbish and unmotivated..
    Called in local shop and spent £8.49 on nonsense really.. Did get a ys enchilada kit..
    Still, I need to do a proper shop & avoid the extras! Fingers crossed I'll feel well enough tomorrow
    Originally posted by MadamMim2013
    At this point, would it just be easier and cheaper to do a delivery from a "more expensive" place like Tesco or Sainsbury's just so the shopping gets done properly and it keeps you out of the corner shop? It's understandable to be unmotivated if you've been so ill but maybe it might be good to break your mental block on "not going to the big expensive shops" just to get a full proper shop done? (Disclaimer: I can't remember if you live in an area where any of those shops deliver to you.)
    APR 18 GC: €257.96/€400.00 // 10/10 NSD
    MAR 18 GC: €193.98/€400.00 // 17/10 NSD // £162.19/£150 UK stock up
    FEB 18 GC: €250.44/€450 and 15/10 NSD
    JAN 18 GC: €377.92/€550.00 // 8 NSD
    Dec 17 GC: €406.50/€350.00 // 11 NSD // £198.57/£200 UK stock up
    • K9sandFelines
    • By K9sandFelines 11th Feb 18, 8:48 AM
    • 1,892 Posts
    • 16,078 Thanks
    Need to add a £17.58 Morrisons shop earlier on in the week and £1.40 spent at work.

    So £18.98 to add to total
    Last edited by K9sandFelines; 11-02-2018 at 9:29 AM.
    GC 2017 (£4,000/£3434.09) Jan £264.28, Feb £179.18, Mar £290.38/£270, APR £128.65 up to 22nd/£270 p.m/£3,250 p.a

    ~ Still learning the art of frugality ~
    • pamsdish
    • By pamsdish 11th Feb 18, 8:55 AM
    • 852 Posts
    • 4,861 Thanks
    Was going shops yesterday, but gave myself a good talking to, as weather was carp, decided to hibernate, can manage until tomorrow, but MUST go tomorrow.
    OCT£200£106NOV£200CRUISE,DEC£200XMAS.JAN £200=£107FEB£200=£40,MARCH£175=£50
    APRIL£200-£5=£195-£22=£173,-£6=£167,-£28=£139,-£21=£118,-£10= £108,-£12=£96
    • Highland Fling
    • By Highland Fling 11th Feb 18, 9:44 AM
    • 44 Posts
    • 600 Thanks
    Highland Fling
    Good morning everyone.
    Snowing here so won't be venturing out.
    Might take a leaf out of This time's for keeps book and try to make some meals for the freezer.
    I may have a browse through the recipes at the start of thread for some inspiration.
    Keep safe and warm everyone.
    • Cottage Economy
    • By Cottage Economy 11th Feb 18, 2:06 PM
    • 904 Posts
    • 3,998 Thanks
    Cottage Economy
    Managed to contain my excitement in the supermarkets this morning to spend £40.57, taking my month total so far to just under £80.

    I've been freezer rummaging over the last couple of weeks and have quite a bit of meat and single portions of leftovers to use. I think that's why I've managed to keep the totals down so far.

    Cooking a massive pork leg later and that will be turned into as many meals for us this week as possible plus some for the freezer, then I'll cook the bone down for stock.
    Last edited by Cottage Economy; 11-02-2018 at 2:31 PM.
    'Save £12k in 2018' £2,000/£6,000 (33%)
    March GC £71.68/160

    "...success in personal finance isn't about mastering the technicalities. It is about mastering yourself."
    • MadamMim2013
    • By MadamMim2013 11th Feb 18, 2:33 PM
    • 507 Posts
    • 6,253 Thanks
    At this point, would it just be easier and cheaper to do a delivery from a "more expensive" place like Tesco or Sainsbury's just so the shopping gets done properly and it keeps you out of the corner shop? It's understandable to be unmotivated if you've been so ill but maybe it might be good to break your mental block on "not going to the big expensive shops" just to get a full proper shop done? (Disclaimer: I can't remember if you live in an area where any of those shops deliver to you.)
    Originally posted by JingsMyBucket
    I do normally shop from a mix yet mainly Mr L's as we like the food quality (& prices!)
    I am extremely lucky to be able to order from any of the big names to be delivered, including Waitrose if wanted.. (I like to pop in and grab the ys sushi from time to time)
    Sadly my autoimmune conditions have flared up badly and kicked my butt this month, the will/want is kind of there it's just the body is not..
    I have taken your advice (the same that I would give to others struggling) and done an online shop to be delivered tomorrow..
    Thank you for giving me a gentle shove in the right direction, it was much needed and I have also stopped mentally nagging at myself so feel less uptight about it!
    Living life happily! Debt Free date: 2018!!!
    Jan 18 GC Feb 18 GC Mar 18 GC Apr 18 GC: £277.55/£300
    • YorksLass
    • By YorksLass 11th Feb 18, 3:56 PM
    • 326 Posts
    • 6,033 Thanks
    I'll need to do some baking as the cake tin is empty. I'm thinking flapjacks plus a large custard tart. Any pastry trimmings left over (and there usually are some) I can use for jam or lemon curd tarts.
    Originally posted by YorksLass
    Well, I made a large custard tart but didn't use the trimmings for sweet tarts. Instead I used them to make x6 mini beef mince & rice pies. (The mince was from the weekend's cottage pie and the rice leftover from Saturday's prawn curry.) They went down nicely for lunchtimes with a mug of the hm tomato & red pepper soup. I'll make the flapjacks this week.

    Week 2's spends came to a total of just £20.02 - 4 pts milk, 1/2 doz eggs, 4 slices of lunch tongue, a small polony, a punnet of ys mushrooms and x2 packs of casserole beef (£3.69 each or two for £7 promo). One of these has gone in the freezer and the other one is in the oven along with half of the mushrooms and some chopped onions; we'll have that for tonight's dinner with mash and spring greens. If there's any left over, we can finish it on another night and pad it out with Yorkies or dumplings.

    This week's meal plan not finalised yet but I have a good idea in my head of what we'll be having. I have some ys minced lamb in the freezer so I think that will make an appearance as moussaka during the week. I'll do a double quantity of the meat base, freeze half and use half.

    Not really salad weather but I have salad-y stuff in the fridge that needs using up, so a salad it will have to be one evening. Anyway, I'm sure we'll enjoy it.

    Planned Soup of the Week is butterbean & lentil with some spices for a bit of oomph.

    This week I need to review my store cupboard inventories (a) to make sure they are up to date and (b) 'cos they're getting very messy .

    Well done to everyone who's making progress and (((hugs))) for the worried and poorlies. Roll on Spring - I think we're all in need of some warmth and sunshine.
    Be kind to others and to yourself too. Life has its ups and downs, use the ups to overcome the downs!
    Apr £109.84/£140 NSDs 16/28 (Jan-Mar £56.48 under budget)

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