Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The plan, in action

Having inventoried what is on hand, and having menus set for Feb through April, I created a list of needs and some wants in order to fulfill my dinner and food plans, for the next few months, my household budget emergency crunch time as we face my upcoming, unpaid medical leave from work. Every effort was made to accomplish this as affordably as possible, yet keeping health needs in mind. While this was "the big top up," I realize that I will have additional purchases as well, over the next few months. My goal is to reduce our grocery expenditure to $200/month on average during this time frame. Time will tell, if this is realistic. We are blessed to have a good stockpile on hand, which includes personal care, paper goods and cleaning items-all budget busters. The bulk of my $200 grocery dollars will go to actual food stuffs.

Store # 1: Aldi's
4 dozen eggs, a Szechuan stir fry kit (at home Val Day celebration),1 box fzn sweet n sour chicken (Val day) 2 pkgs fzn fruit blends, 1 pkg fzn Flounder fillets, 3 gallons milk, 4 fzn OJ, 1 whipped cream, qt 1/2 & 1/2, 1 box ea crab ragoons and pot stickers (Val Day), 4 lbs fzn ground beef, 3 lbs Gala apples, bananas, strawberries, 2 tubs ea organic spinach and baby salad greens, hot house tomatoes, black forest sandwich ham, bologna, 4 cans albacore, 6 cans ck lite tuna, 1 bag fzn peas, 1 lb ea butter and stick margarine, 1 sweet potato chips, 1 potato chips, 2 "doritos", 2 tortilla chips, 1 pkg hamburger buns, 1 cuke, 1 whole roaster chicken, 2 pkgs swabs, 2 lbs carrots, 2 boxes "honey nut cheerios," 2 boxes "cheerios," 4 mini boxes Val day chocolates for the kids, 2 large jars peanut butter, 1 canola "pam" spray, 2 bottles each: apple juice, cranberry juice, splash juice; 2 lbs lemons, 1 mayonnaise, 2 boxes trail mix granola bars, 2 boxes protein granola bars.
Spent: $153.27, saved 75 cents with can returns

Store # 2: Dollar Tree
1 Kraft recipe makers sauce kit for pasta, 4 10 oz pkgs fzn blueberries, 2 pkgs fzn onion rings, 2 bottles spicy brown mustard.
Spent: $8.45, saved 55 cents with coupon on the Kraft recipe maker

Store # 3: Xpect Discounts
1 marked down head of Tamara and Antle Boston bib lettuce @ $1, 8 boxes pudding mix 4 pears @ $1/lb, 20 lbs each All purpose flour and bread flour, 4.25 lbs of marked down potatoes @ $1, mushrooms, 2 32 oz pkgs fzn tater tots, 1 25 lb bag of ice melt
Spent: $34.54

Grand total: $196.26. CASH. Added to the $20 or so I recently spent, I am technically a bit over budget, but no worries as the Valentines Day celebration items and candies will be "charged" or tallied to "celebrations" and not groceries. ($15.42 in total), so actually $180.84 spent on "groceries" today, $15.42 towards "celebrations" so approx $201.34-pretty darn close to the figure I wanted for the month. We are continuing to use the boxed "emergency" milk, instant milk whenever possible, and I serve alternative beverages to milk when I can, but still like to serve milk at least at supper.

Store # 4: Costco
While I do not belong, I was dismayed to learn today that the health food store where I have purchased bulk yeast, has discontinued doing so, only offering the 3 count foil packs. Based on the amount of baking I do now, this is not a cost effective source. I was out with a friend today, and asked her to pick me up a large package of yeast at Costco as she was running some errands. $5-a very affordable option for me, for a 2 lb bag.

Feb grocery: $206.34. I can certainly live with this, knowing that much of what I bought today, will be carried over into other months.


Anonymous said...

Wow! You shopped a lot! I bet you're tired after that. I always am after a big shop. I hope that you had some help getting it in the house and put away - I doubt the PT would be happy if you unDid all the work you've done to heal.

That's a drag about the yeast. I was so mad on my last BJs run. They stopped selling the Palmieri Sauce in gallons that I use as a base for my sauce (I doctor the heck out of this brand). It's made in new haven so I could drive there to get it and the DiLuigi sausages we like. Bonus is they now carry the Omega vitamins the kids and I take in the huge bottle - big savings!

Can you order that yeast from King Arthur? They have free shipping sometimes. Or maybe direct from the mfg?

My kids thankfully decided to not drink as much juice - since the soda stream came. They drink lots of seltzer with lemon juice since I haven't 'remembered' to buy
flavoring. We get the charging cartridges through staples with coupons from ink recycling. Actually works out cheaper than juice. Were still at 2 gallons of milk and half gallon OJ a week but that's better than it was.

Anonymous said...

How are the crab ragoons and pot stickers from Aldi's? I have seen them but haven't tried them and they would be a nice treat.

I am glad you are feeling better. Funny how we both did a pantry post the same day

Get some rest

Belinda said...

Great plan to have your friend pick up the yeast for you at Costco. We have one close by, but with a Sam's membership, I could not justify the cost for a second warehouse membership.

Looks like terrific planning on your part, Carol. I continue to hope that your time of recovery goes smoothly.

CTMOM said...

I came home to take Advil, put on my heating pad and take a nap! DD was a big help with shopping at the 3 stores, bringing it in, putting it away. Do you go to Xpect? they carry Palmieri sauce-at least in Danbury. there is one in Milford, Cromwell, too, I think. I recall researching sources for bulk yeast, which is how I knew that Costco would be my second choice. My girlfriend was running a taxi service for me yesterday, to take DS #2 to a weekly medical appointment in the city, and would be running errands before picking us up 1 1/2 hours later so asking her to grab some bulk yeast for me was not a hardship on her.: ) I am good for at least a few months now.

CTMOM said...

yes, Chinese items were from Aldis. Cheaper to get it there vs ordering out, so a mini Val Day celebration, on a tight budget.

CTMOM said...

thanks, Belinda. I continue to see improvements every day, yet remain limited in what I am permitted to and what I physically can do.

Marcia in rural WNY said...

Wow, if yeast is $5 for 2 lbs, I haven't bought any for a while. I'm a Sam's member, and I'm sure it was $3.XX last time I bought it. Probably a good year ago, as I am running fairly low and have it on my list for my next Sam's run. (It's 30 miles away so I plan ahead.)

I roasted some haricots verts today--the frozen ones meant to be steamed. They turned out quite good---I had the oven at 325 so they took about 25-30 minutes. Used olive oil with about a tbsp. of sesame oil too. I meant to put sesame seeds on top as well but could not find any in the cupboard--CANNOT believe I would be out of them--I consider them a FOOD GROUP!

Or is it haricots vertes? You would correct my error, right?