Progress this week? I’m not sure – it doesn’t really feel like it. These were my assignments for the week:
- Organize & inventory freezer.
- Make a menu from what’s in the freezer and pantry.
- Switch my grocery store day to Friday instead of Wednesday.
#1 – I did organize and inventory the freezer. There were a lot of things in there that needed tossed. And I had no idea how many partial bags of vegetables I had. Now it’s all organized but not very full! I’ve been trying to spend less for a while and my stock has gotten really low – like almost non-existent.
#2 – So completing #2, making a menu from what’s in the freezer, was impossible. The only meat I had was a package of smoked sausage and two chicken breasts. I did incorporate those into my plan but I had to add quite a bit more to get a complete menu. Plus I was trying to make a menu that wouldn’t require much oven use since it’s so HOT here in the Midwest.
#3 – I went to the grocery store on Friday and HATED IT! It was SO crowded! I normally go on Wednesday and it’s not as crowded.
So here are my thoughts:
- I’m still struggling with the emotional side of cutting my budget. I realized a couple things this week.
My identity is wrapped up with my cooking/entertaining. It’s part of who I am. Friends and family know that they can come to my house and get a great meal. Having a tiny grocery budget makes me feel like I can’t do that very well.
I feed people a lot. It’s what I do. Family and friends. I love it. I often get a call that someone’s stopping by unexpectedly, and if it’s around dinner time, I offer them dinner. If it’s lunchtime, I offer them lunch. I cook almost every day so it’s usually not a big deal to add a couple of people. If what I’m making won’t stretch, I have a menu plan so I check and see what I can do instead. I need money and supplies to do that and I feel like I can’t do it as well now.
- I don’t think I can do $150 a week. I’m going to increase it to $175 and see if that helps.
- I realized that stockpiling takes time! In all honesty, there weren’t very many good sales this week. I got the ads and looked through them but there wasn’t anything exceptional. Several of you pointed out that Prego (my favorite spaghetti sauce) was on sale at HyVee for $1 a jar. Unfortunately there was a limit of two and I’ll be using both of them for this week’s menu. I finally figured out that due to budget limitations and items available for purchase, I will not be able to stock my pantry and freezer in just one or two weeks.
Here are my goals for this week:
1. Spend $175 instead of $150.
2. Pop in at Aldi’s and just look around. For some reason the idea of going to Aldi’s as part of my grocery shopping is stressing me out. So if I just pop in some time and look around, I think it will be easier for future trips.
And that’s it for this week. I have a really busy week planned so I’m going to make it easy on myself and just have these 2 goals. I’ll let you know how things go and please keep those suggestions and tips coming! I need your help!