Friday, October 22, 2010

The Great Grocery Challenge

The new challenge at our house is to cut down on our food bills.  I have become sort of a "food collector",  For some women, they buy a ton of shoes on sale.  Others, may purchase hundreds of flowers for their gardens.  I, however, collect chicken breast and microwave popcorn.  It's a sickness, so please don't judge me.

Last week, when looking through my stocked freezers (yes, I have 3) and cabinets with six open bags of cereal (not an exaggeration) I had a thought. 

I wonder how long we could live off the food already in the house?

So, my plan was set in motion.  I decided I would only purchase milk, half & half for coffee, eggs, bread and fruits/veggies until we used all the food already in the house.  I would purchase coffee and deli meats on an as needed basis (not stockpile it) since those were two necessities needed to avoid purchasing it outside of the home.  The girls have already been packing lunch for school about four times a week and not only were we saving a ton of money doing that, all of them have lost weight! I plan to use all these savings to pay cash for Christmas gifts this year for the kiddos. Or, new jeans for them since they are falling down.  Or, maybe just belts since the jeans are nice and new.....actually, I'm sure it will take a full year or two of packing lunches to pay for all their sports and activities!

I digress.

Update for week one....I already cheated a bit.

I had a coupon for candy and CVS had an in-store coupon and it was on sale, so I got a bunch to keep on hand.  #3 will need some to throw in the parade with the Girl Scouts and then her birthday is coming up (treat bags!).  C'mon, I got five bags of Hershey's and Mars candy for only $6.50!!  Then, I saw that Karn's had Turkey Hill ice cream on sale for $1.99 and I had $1 off coupons so how could I not go buy five half gallons when they were only $0.99 each?? I'm only human, people!!

So, I adjusted my little plan.  If it was about a $1 with a coupon, on sale and something we would really use, then I'm allowed to purchase it.

When revealing the plan to the kids, #1 asked if we were poor.

Little does she know, her mom is just playing a little mental game with herself.  And, hopefully, if I don't keep changing the rules, she may get a few Christmas gifts out of the deal.

All in all, this week (because I had already thrown in a trip to Costco) my food bill came to about 2/3 of what it usually is.  My goal is to cut it in half from now until the cabinets and freezers are empty.  Realistically, I think we can make it about a month.

On a positive note, while purchasing the Turkey Hill ice cream, out of habit I was going to grab something unhealthy from the bakery for breakfast and I stopped myself.  Nope, I can eat oatmeal in the morning.  Since there is probably enough in my pantry to feed a small island in the Bahamas.

To be continued....

1 comment:

Promises Fulfilled said...

Very cool! I have actually done this before - I told myself, I cannot buy anymore meat until I use what is in the freezer that I got on sale and stockpiled in our freezer!!! Since I started to freezer cook, that has actually helped me in this too. When I buy the meat, it has a purpose right away. I haven't lost any weight though...but I haven't gained either! (but, I want to lose!) :)