We just completed our FIFTH and final week of the January 2020 grocery budget, and I’m back to give you the update. 🙂 (If you want to read my original post, you can find it here.)
Quick recap: we are a family of five (only two adults) with a monthly budget of $1,250, which works out to $250/week (I started the week of 12/29 and need to make it all the way to the end of January). I do my grocery shopping Sunday afternoon after church and usually hit three different grocery stores: one for bulk items, one for good organic items and one for great prices. The word grocery is a little misleading, because our total budget includes: diapers (can’t wait till these leave the list!), toilet paper, paper towels, toiletries, etc.
Week 1: 12/29/19 Spent $426.93 (I previously had $398.84 but I left out the mid week purchase)
Week 2: 1/5/20 Spent $227.30 (I previously had $198.69 but, again, I left out the mid week purchase)
Week 3: 1/12/20 Spent $432.08 (This includes the mid week grocery purchases)
Week 4: 1/26/20 Spent $187.84 (This includes the mid week grocery purchase)
Week 5: 1/31/20 Spent $325.18 (This includes the mid week grocery purchase)
Total Spent: $1,599.33 of $1,250.00, so I am over $349.33 for the month. The great news is we went the ENTIRE month without eating out ONE TIME! Let’s talk more about the month below.
1) No eating out for the ENTIRE month of January! I have to admit I think this is the first time in our marriage where we did not eat out even once for an entire month. By the end of the month, we were picking up momentum and encouraging each other to keep going. The savings from not eating out also helped offset the budget overage! Plus, we had some other savings that helped with the food overage. It was the first month in a long time where I didn’t have to pull money from savings to make the month. That felt great!
2) We ate all of our leftovers AGAIN! This is getting easier every week. It’s almost a game now to make sure everything gets eaten and nothing goes in the bin.
3) I made it the whole month without takeout coffee! This was another big deal. I haven’t always been a bit takeout coffee person, but I know in the last year it has been a regular habit. Thinking about not going has forced me to evaluate how I reward myself.
1) Of course being over budget was the biggest loss for this month, but I am ready for February.
2) Confession time! I met a friend for breakfast on 2/1, so I have finally had a meal out this year. Also, in order to “celebrate” not eating out for a whole month, we decided to eat out for dinner on 2/1. So, I went out to eat twice on the first of February. It’s nice not to have to think about what’s for dinner, but it was expensive: $54 (tip included). That’s 1/5 of the grocery budget for the WHOLE month. ON ONE MEAL. Yes, I enjoyed it, but we are shooting for another month of no eating out.
Dinner Menu for February Week 1
Monday: Baked Chicken, Carrots and Peas, Macaroni and Cheese, Baked Beans
Tuesday: Pork Carnitas, Taco Shells, Tomatoes, Spinach, Rice
Wednesday: Salmon, Sweet Potatoes, Broccoli
Thursday: Spaghetti, Ground Beef, Marinara Sauce, Spaghetti Squash, Spinach salad
Friday: Homemade pizza for the kids/Leftovers for the adults
Saturday: Beef Stir fry, Rice, Broccoli, Red Pepper, Onions
Sunday: Left overs
Lunches are very simple: ham sandwiches or PB&J or grilled cheese for the kids and a salad for me.
Breakfast: eggs, sausage and toast on the weekdays/ quiche and oatmeal on the weekends
There it is! Our fifth week on the grocery budget!
What about you? Do you make a menu and grocery list before you shop? Let me know in the comments!