Monday 30 January 2012

What We Spent, January 2 - January 29

The challenge was well timed for us.  Our tight January budget necessitated “shopping at home.”  Working from our pantry and deep freeze before purchasing from the store helped us to get through the month without exceeding our budget.

We ran out of coffee early in the month and debated going without it but, in the end, decided that coffee is too important a pleasure for us to be willing to forgo it entirely.  We bought coffee and, instead, did without some other things.

We also bought frozen vegetables this month, because we were completely out of them.  With many of the items in the produce aisle being out of our price range at this time of year, frozen vegetables provided the most affordable option.

I was fortunate to get some good prices on cheese at the end of last month, and stocked our freezer with Brie, Cheddar, and a bag of shredded Mozzarella and Edam.  Because we had these cheeses on hand, we were able to limit our dairy purchases this month to yogurt, cottage cheese, and milk.

By the last week of the month we were both getting a little cranky about the limited vegetable options on our menu but, other than that, we did just fine.  I’m glad to be able to say that because our budget will be just as limited in February.

We’re both very grateful that our freezer is well stocked with meat and fish.  I have canned fish and canned turkey in the pantry too, so we’re not lacking for protein.  I am, however, going to have to find some way to expand the grocery budget soon or, once we’ve worked our way through what we have on hand, meat will no longer be an affordable option for us.  That would make my husband very unhappy.  I wouldn’t be thrilled about it either.

In order to provide myself with incentive to continue on with our "shop what we have" agenda, I’ll be participating in another pantry challenge for the month of February, this one hosted by Coping With Frugality.  I’ll also be looking hard at our budget and at my earning options this month, with the goal of expanding our grocery budget by at least $50/month by the beginning of March.

Here’s a breakdown of our grocery spending in January.  What are your goals for February?

Yogurt (2 x 675 grams/23.8 ounces)
      $  4.94
Cottage cheese (750 grams/26.5 ounces)
3  x 796 ml/27 ounce tins crushed tomatoes
Frozen peas (750 grams/26.5 ounces)
Frozen green beans (1 kg/2.2 pounds)
Frozen corn (1 kg/2.2 pounds)
Frozen spinach (500 grams/1.1 pounds)
2 English cucumbers
Cabbage (1.13 kg/2.49 pounds)
Chicken stock in a box (4 x 900 ml/30.4 ounce)
Coffee (2 x 1.36 kg/3 pounds)
2 x 2 litres/2.11 quarts 2% milk
Bananas (1.25 kg/2.76punds)
4.54 kg/10 pounds navel oranges
Yogurt (750 grams/26.5 ounces)
Cottage cheese (2 x 1 Kg/2,2 pounds)
10 kg/22 pounds sugar
300 grams/10.7 ounces tomatoes
4 packages (6 each pkt) English muffins
Kraft dinner

 Total Expenditures