Monday, October 25, 2010

Food, cont.

Well i stopped blogging about it because the $5 for dinner experiment turned out to be too easy. When we ate mini burgers with avocado, rice, and veggies, i realized that if you keep the portions under control, most meals can be under $5. I didn't feel challenged any more, so I stopped blogging about it. I haven't stopped making the $5 meals - in fact they are usually less than $5 - just stopped writing about it.

a bigger challenge would be to feed a family with kids on $5, or to do what some other woman is doing, eating on $3.33 total per day. wooo! that has to be very difficult.

that said, i still haven't identified why we spend so much at the grocery store if each of our individual meals is so cheap. some reasons i've identified are:
-waste, where we buy things to try them, don't like them and don't finish.
-waste, where things go bad before we eat them
-waste, where we don't eat leftovers
-buying more of something before we run out
- throwing too many parties.

nov 1 is fast approaching so we'll see how the numbers flush out...

Friday, October 8, 2010

Day Three

Tater Tots

cream cheese
Turkey Bacon

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Day Two

Trader Joes Pulled Pork - full package

one head of romaine lettuce

left over marinated bean salad
corn salsa
1 avocado
2 whole grain wheat wraps

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Day One

Three Chicken Sausages -  $1.79 -  (need to double check that - could be $2.39)

Three servings of farfalle pasta - 37 cents (the link goes to peapod, which is $1.37. I get it at Trader Joe's, which is 99 cents.)

Peas and Corn - 70 cents

I will even include the glass of green tea I had - 60 cents.

Total for the night:  $3.46 -


I broke a toe and can't afford a gym, so I'm not racing right now and need to focus on other areas of wellness, like finances and food.
We just bought a car, and we have to cut back a bit on our expenses. We found that we spend about $400 a month on groceries - this is consistent over the 18 months that we have lived in our current apartment (BTW - thanks to for helping me figure that out so easily!)

$400 a month translates to $13 a day per person. At first glance that's not too bad. Once I look deeper I can see a major problem. Jeff and I both eat small breakfasts - half a bagel, eggs, cereal, or yogurt. The bagels sell at $2.99 for 6, which we always split in half, so we get 12 breakfast out of $2.99 - or 25 cents. Eggs are $1.49 for 6 breakfasts, also 25 cents. Cream cheese is about 8 cents, and condiments are pennies. Yogurt is 70 cents at the most.

Aside from Saturday and Sunday, we always eat lunch at work. I am provided with lunch as part of my salary, and Jeff works downtown in a very social environment and uses lunches to decompress and catch up with friends. Although he does sometimes prepare lunch at work, for the purpose of this budget, the money he spends on lunches don't count.

Alotting $2 per day for breakfast for both people (generous!), that leaves us with $11 a day we are spending essentially on dinner and snacks only.

We have a favorite greasy spoon around the corner called Mangi's, and there anyone can get a hot dog or burger, fries, and a drink for $4.95. In my mind, that fact shows that my husband and I are wasting serious money on groceries. If we could eat out every single night for cheaper than we are eating at home, something is wrong!

To challenge myself to be a better cook and a more frugal woman, I am going to try to spend only $5 a night total on the meals that I make for me and Jeff.

New monthly budget =
5 x 30 = $150 + $50-60 for breakfasts and $40-50 for snacks/drinks = $250 a month on groceries instead of $400.