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Saturday, July 14, 2012

July's grocery money

This past week, our grocery budget had the great fortune of me being too busy to go to a grocery store, with the exception a one quick stop to pick up a gallon of milk. (I don't want my kids' bones to suffer on account of my busy schedule!)

As a result, I just cooked from whatever I could find in my kitchen. For the month, I am on track to come in slightly under budget. We'll have to see what great deals I find, as those will sometimes skew my end-of-month grocery tally (but deals are often foods that I freeze, or store in the pantry to use in coming months).

This brings me to a point. Going to the grocery store less frequently saves not just on necessities, but also on all those impulse buys. If I stop in to a grocery store 3 times a week, I am exposed to the tempting treats, conveniently placed at eye level, every which way I turn, 3 times in one week. If I'm tired, rushed, dinner's late, or the kids are hungry, then my resolve to just stick to my list weakens, and I succumb to those crazy impulse buys.

If I only go to the grocery store 1 time per week, or even less frequently (if I'm busy or my kitchen is well-stocked), there's just that 1 opportunity to slip up and buy the unnecessary items. I wind up saving quite a bit by shopping less, and improvising more. For example, this week we've eaten a lot of beans -- refried, bbq'd, marinated for a salad, and last night, as we also have an abundance of hot dogs this week, I gleaned what I could from my fridge (bbq sauce, cheese and cooked pinto beans) and made some fairly tasty bbq bean dogs. We've also been eating a lot of boiled eggs, in salads, for breakfast, and along with bread and butter, at lunch. What most needs eating from the garden is lettuce, so one of our dinner vegetables has been a larger than normal salad for everyone. And the strawberries, cherries and rhubarb keep coming, so no lack of fruit.

If you're in the habit of stopping in at the store several times a week, check some of your old receipts to see if you've also succumbed to any crazy impulse buys, either for you or the kids. For many folks, shopping less frequently is one of the tools to saving on groceries.


  1. I agree totally! The less often you go to a store, any store, the less temptation there is to buy other things. That's why I only shop once a month. I hate shopping (anything, not just groceries), so going only once a month is a bonus in so many ways. Besides avoiding temptation, it also saves time and gas money too!

    1. Hi Jayne,
      Yes, a definite bonus to save time and gas! I also like shopping less frequently because I don't like to hassle with crowded stores. Less frustrations for me.
      I hadn't thought of this in this way before -- but this definitely applies to other types of shopping, like hanging out at the mall or making a Target run once a week. It seems if I just step in to Target for one thing, I come out with 10! Crazy impulse buys fly off the shelves and into my cart! Yes, going to Target less saves me a bundle.
      Thanks for commenting!

  2. Being busy as helped our bill HUGE. The last couple of months, our grocery bill is way less, because like you, were using what's in the pantry/freezer. With the exception of a few things like milk etc. BUT today, I must give in and go SHOPPING, yuk!

    1. I know, you do reach a point when you really *have* to go shopping. As hard as we try, there are only so many rabbits we can pull out of the pantry hat! Hopefully you'll find lots of good deals. At least this time of year, if you're buying produce, there's a lot to choose from that's well-priced! I love produce stands and am always sad to see them close for the winter.
      Good luck with your shopping!



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