Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Jumping into the Spending for 2014

I've been asked how I spend so little on groceries/toiletries in a year in relation to how many people I am feeding/providing products for.

Well, playing "the drugstore" game at Rite-Aid helps mostly with the toiletries/hba/cleaning and paper products.

I also utilize other stores like grocery outlets, restaurant supplies, bakery outlets, discount outlets, gardening and farm stands, etc.  Basically anywhere I can get items for a lower price.  And yes, I am known to buy groceries while on vacation. 8-)

I cook from scratch a goodly amount.

I keep a price book so I know when to buy food(at the lowest price in the sales cycle)and I stockpile moderately and only what we will eat.

I ALWAYS grocery shop with a list and a calculator.  Nothing goes into my cart unless I have figured out what it's costing me.

I meal plan but I am also flexible about it.

Let's talk about that last point a bit, shall we?
Hubs and I went to the grocery store this afternoon.  We've been out of town so we needed to make a menu plan for the rest of this week and pick up some edible provisions as I haven't shopped in over a week.

I had a menu(sort of)planned out.....
I had cooked a pork roast marinated in whiskey and black pepper flavors before we left which #2 Son didn't eat, so that went on the dinner list as pork sandwiches with coleslaw(buy a bag of pre-shredded and make a slaw sauce to add).
I was going to do portabella mushroom caps w/a parmesan treatment and use some spaghetti pasta leftover as a side for a meal.
I had some kielbasa in the freezer I could make a meal of.
That was about all I'd come up with before we left....3 meals.

I didn't plan on buying lots of meat today but that is what was the best deal in the store. 8-)))

Once we got to the store I saw that bagged slaw was not on sale but whole cabbages were, so I bought a small head for $1.10 vs. a bag of slaw for $3.49.(I have carrots shreds I can add at home and I have a
I have rolls in the fridge I got on the discount bakery rack a couple of weeks ago I can use with these sammie's after steaming them to soften them up.
1 meal, Friday's, is done!

Over in the fish dept. there was a 1.91 lbs. container of Cod marked down to 50% off($6.99 lb. reg.).
This is enough for 2 meals for our family of 3 once I take it home and cut it up and portion it out into bags-1 to cook tomorrow, 1 for the freezer.  US caught wild cod for $3.50 per meal.
I had no intention of buying and cooking cod this week but because of this deal, cod is now on the menu.

Over in the meat dept. I found boneless/skinless chicken thighs marked down to .84¢ lb.  There were cheaper non boneless/skinless thighs also for about .70¢ lb. but those packages were large quantities and I don't have room in my tiny freezers so I "settled" for the .84¢ lb. ones.
Now instead of mushroom parmesan, chicken parmesan is on the menu for tonight.

Boneless Pork Loin was on special(today is the last day)for $1.78 lb. so I picked a small one up(7 lbs.)  Saturday, I'll cook some "chops" for dinner and slice the rest up to portion out, bag up and put into the freezer for later.

They also had reduced lamb chops(50% off)so I picked up 4 chops and will serve them on Sunday, so 1 of 7 meals for next week are bought as well.

And now my menu for the rest of the week plus Sunday is finished and the food bought.
Plus I have an extra fish meal, leftovers on the chicken meal for #2 Son to munch on, probably some pork sammies and fixings leftover and boneless pork chops enough for 2-3 more meals(depending on how many Hubs and #2 Son want at a sitting).
I also bought lunchmeat for sandwich lunches, green leaf lettuce, a loaf of bakery made rye bread-they made too much so it was $1.19 a loaf, and a large container of pumpkin spice creamer(that was a marked down whim for #2 Son and it rang up wrong so I got it free!).
The bread was a happy find.  Bread was on the list but not rye...until I found it for $1.19 a loaf. ;-)

I spent $41.01 and got 7-8 dinner main courses bought, plus a few other things.

If there are no good specials on meat next week, I'll just pull out the extra cod and 1 meal of pork chops I got and froze today,  then add in a few meatless dishes and the leftover chunk of meat lasagna I froze last month and another meat in the freezer to complete next week's menu.




  1. Just wondering--you said "we" had to make out a menu. So, is husband in on the planning of a menu usually? Or, was that just because he was along?

    I really try to buy nothing that is not reduced by coupon, sale, or clearance. However, Kraft Parmesan cheese is just not going on sale nor does it have a coupon. I am going to break down and buy it because I am sick and tired of using my bags of shredded Kraft. It is okay, but not the taste I really crave. I am caving.

    Making a price book is something I must do, although I don't buy the variety to keep track of like you do that you do,

    When Kraft Parmesan gets cheap, I will buy more than one shaker. It can just live in the freezer so I will not have to suffer.

    Your comment on "dropping" on my blog was hilarious. I had to read it to exbf today.

  2. Meat in Canada is almost never below $2 per lb. I browse the expensive grocery store meat department for markdowns based on sell by date. We had three very nice steaks tonight for $11 versus the $23 original price. Cheers!


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