LovemyMartel

Love Food, Hate Waste Project March 24, 2011

Filed under: HATE WASTE PROJECT — LovemyMartel @ 2:49 pm

…A Money Saving(FOOD) Budget Project…

My husband and I spend way too much money at the store. I’d say we spend more a month in food than our house payment (this includes dining out, of course).

I’ve managed to identify our main problems (or what I THINK they are):

Problem No. 1: I go to the store without a plan. I toss things into my cart without a menu in mind, then I get home and have a hard time putting together a meal, so we go out.

Problem No. 2: I can’t stop going out to lunch! This sounds harmless, but $7-$8 a day two or three days a week really adds up (two days a week is about $60 a month)… shameful, I know. 

Problem No. 3: Boy do I love to cook. I also love to entertain and refuse to have someone come to my house and not be properly cared for. I also refuse to let someone’s birthday, a mother’s day, etc., go without proper food. I guess it’s the Italian in me, or I got it from my mama- whatever the reason, we spend an insane amount on food when we host a party, have a birthday or whatever else comes up.

Problem No. 4: I started couponing. I am obsessed. While I am getting some AMAZING deals, some free things and TONS of stuff for cheap- I find myself buying products I either don’t need or already have a stock pile of  simply because they are cheap. For example: I won’t need to purchase body wash for a year I’d say, but, if I find it for cheap, you better believe it’s going into my cart. So, after all is said and done, my groceries are in my cart (the ones I NEED), and my “deals” are in there, I waltz out with probably 50% of items I don’t need. I MUST start buying only what I need. I’m going to have a hard time with this. I love a good deal.

…So, here’s the project plan:

  • Decide on a weekly/biweekly budget. Please include how many people  you’re using this budget for.
  • Commit to at least one blog post per week about the project. Include your menu, what you purchased, etc. Be sure to include your budget and what you actually spent!
  • Coupons count! Since I love them, I want to incorporate them into this project. I am hoping this project will get me more serious about my coupons, while teaching me to only purchase what I NEED at the same time.

Sounds simple enough, but I am already worried. I have such a hard time passing up going out to dinner, out to lunch, or tossing an “extra” item (or 10 extra items) into my cart. I’m also terrible about just going for lunch meat and coming out with $45 worth of stuff.

So, how to determine a “reasonable budget”.. Well, I googled it.. here’s where I’m getting my figures from:

http://www.extension.iastate.edu/foodsavings/plan/foodspendingplan/

Reliable source? Ehh, who knows, but it’s a start. So, for one male, one female- it budgeted us at $105 a week. Sounds reasonable. Considering I was spending about $150 a week before, this plan would save me nearly $200 a month. Just for my own challenge purpose, I want to be UNDER $100, so I’m shooting for…. $99 a week. I’ll see how this pans out.

Good luck! I can’t wait to hear your stories and see the outcome!

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