|Honey Mustard Porkchops - recipe coming soon.|
Yes, I know there are four weeks in this month. But I don't shop during the last week - to save gas and to eat up what we have in the house.
So, that's it. The grocery month is over. I'm done with the budget. I've spent all I'm going to spend (unless we have an emergency). So how did I do?
Month's Budget: $350
Week 1 Spent: $119.30
Week 2 Spent: $96.96
Week 3 Spent: $75.63
Total Spent: $291.89
Wait. What? That puts me under budget by $58.11! So the month I actually cut the budget by $50, I spend an EXTRA $50 less. Gosh.
This month's experiment has really opened my eyes to the way I was shopping. As a reminder the main part of the experiment was not cutting the budget, but only buying what was on my pre-approved list. Rather than playing a guessing game of what to buy each week, I knew ahead of time what I was allowed to get during the month (ex. 1 25 lb bag of flour, 12 cartons of eggs). So how did I do on that?
I did pretty well with most everything. If I went over on a certain item's price it was because the price was a bit more than I budgeted, rather than buying too many items. I did fudge on a few things and bought things like lettuce, but didn't buy carrots or celery (since I still have some) to even it out.
I also bought a wee bit of candy... But it was for Ben. ;)
Here's the breakdown:
I went $.78 over on milk because the price went up.
I went $3.98 over on coffee because it's the highest stinkin' price I've ever seen it with no sales in sight.
I went $2.66 over on soda because I was a bad girl and bought Cherry Pepsi which was not as good of a deal once I got to the register as I thought it was. >.>
I went $.78 over on meat because... well because I wasn't using my calculator yesterday. Whoops.
I also bought lettuce, sunflower seeds, and candy, which weren't on the list but there were 5 things on the list that I didn't buy at all.
I really enjoyed this experiment. We were talking the other night how we've been eating better this month than we have in previous months. I knew exactly what I could get, so I knew exactly what I would have to make things with. One of my biggest challenges was only buying meat if it was under $2 a pound so that meant buying things that I wouldn't usually buy and I had to find/make up recipes to fit accordingly. Which was a really nice to break from our usual food.
I think I'm actually going to keep this system for awhile, with a few changes.
- A set amount for produce, rather than buying certain items. This will allow me buy what's on sale and fresh and hopefully get me to the farmer's market.
- A set amount for condiments and spices. To cover things we might run out of and allow me to stock up on those $1 sales.
- We drink waaay more milk that 2 gallons a week if given the chance.
I have to say thank you to my mom-in-love for supplying me with farm fresh eggs when she could. It allowed me to buy only half of the amount I needed, and saved me $24! Plus fresh eggs are so superior in taste to store bought. :)