Welcome to Dollar Stretcher Community Sign in | Join | Help
in Search

How Low Can You Go?

Last post 09-08-2011 10:41 AM by Spendwise Mom. 28 replies.
Page 1 of 3 (29 items) 1 2 3 Next >
Sort Posts: Previous Next
  • 07-20-2011 10:54 AM

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    How Low Can You Go?

    What is the lowest amount that you can get by with spending for groceries?

     Can you reduce your expenses? If you don't think you can, what would it take for you to be able to do this?

    Let's see if we can help each other in a challenge. How low can we go and how much can we save for the next two weeks!

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • 07-20-2011 1:41 PM In reply to

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

    I'll give this a go.  I usually shop on Fridays and I know I don't need alot this week.  Next week will be the challenging one.  We have a garden that is producing tomatoes, green beans, summer squash, onions and potatoes.  Cucumbers are almost ready too.  With that and what I have on hand, I could probably come up with meals for about 2 weeks, just have to buy dairy stuff, eggs and maybe some fruit.  The thing that'll give me trouble is the snack items.  DH has a thing for junk food and if he goes to the store while I'm at work, he comes home with all sorts of goodies.  It's his only vice so I think I can live with it.  :)

  • 07-20-2011 2:54 PM In reply to

    • rolo
    • Top 50 Contributor
      Female
    • Joined on 04-04-2007
    • Michigan
    • Posts 1,928

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

     We could go lower, and have in the past.  We now are looking at the long term "big picture" of the impact of our food choices on health/medical expenses.   We spend around $450 monthly on just food now for a family of 3 adults. We could reduce that but it means going back to eating in an unhealthy way.  We used to eat a lot of cheap foods--boxed hb helper, mac n cheese, ramen noodles, canned soups, spagettios, etc. etc. etc.  Money savers in the short term but have a negative health impact for most follks over the long term.

    We like to think it is a trade off for us--what we now spend monthly for food-->we will reap the savings in health care down the road. 

    Over the course of 3 years we have changed our outlook entirely.  We spend more to purchase locally from farmers: beef, chicken, pork, butter, cheese, milk.  We grow a lot of produce and buy locally grown produce and fruit as much as possible.  This has raised our overall food budget but we know where the food comes from, how it is  raised/produced (pesticides, herbicides, hormones, antibiotics, etc.) ;we have made a commitment to supporting our own future health and the local economy here. 

    Sometimes, it isn't about how little one spends but the quality/impact of the choices. 

     ALL THAT SAID--our real savings have been coming from the cutback in purchasing household products and multiple toiltry items, and buying cat food/litter in bulk from the grain elevator farm store. 

     

     

    Lorrie

    "People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost." ~~ Dalai Lama XIV -

  • 07-20-2011 8:34 PM In reply to

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

    Starving Artist - congrats on your wonderful garden success. Have you tried making healthy snack packs for your husband? might help lessesn the junk food splurges or binges and so much healthier. You have great goods to play with - raw veggies and dip, homemade veggie chips and oven baked fries... Will he eat that kind of stuff too?

    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." ~Chinese Proverb~
  • 07-27-2011 9:20 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

     I skipped one my shopping trips and kept my expense much lower with only getting essentials at a small store near my house. 

    The sales are good this week so I want to take advantage. Let's see if I can stick to just what I need.

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • 07-27-2011 3:39 PM In reply to

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

     If I can get partner on board for a week of salad, I can go pretty low! Veggies are pre-paid for another week (CSA).

    I will not be renewing my CSA this time. I pick up at a location, and the greens are wilting. Even  carrots go soft!

    I have a couple options for fresh produce in stores and farmers markets. And I miss going to the market.

     

    My aim for groceries this week for two foodies is $30. not counting his beer.Tongue Tied

    We need vanilla, cheese and he wants ground beef.

    I want a non citrus fruit or two, various hot peppers and parsley. After the CSA box arries, I'll know if i need greens.

     

     

  • 08-01-2011 11:23 AM In reply to

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

    I like this thread!

    But it brings to mind what I often see here. What we spend per week at the market vs what we actually consume that week. Others and myself often report spending more at the market when an item is on sale, to add to the pantry (which I believe is a wise purchase). But, it doesn't necessarily get eaten that week.

    So do we count those items because they were purchased with that week's food budget funds, or do we not count those items because they weren't consumed that week? 

    We could use Gary's help on the math side of this one, as I'm not sure how we could go about separating it out to get a clear idea of what the real cost of our food is for one week.   The only way I can think of would be to separate the items at the market, and get a separate receipt for items that will be used this week vs pantry storage.

    I can look at my statement to see what I spend each week, but that doesn't show what we ate that week. I have a general idea but now that I've seen this thread, I'm curious how much we spend on food we actually eat in a week.

     

     

  • 08-01-2011 11:41 AM In reply to

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

    Cheryl:

     

    So do we count those items because they were purchased with that week's food budget funds, or do we not count those items because they weren't consumed that week? 

    We could use Gary's help on the math side of this one, as I'm not sure how we could go about separating it out to get a clear idea of what the real cost of our food is for one week.   The only way I can think of would be to separate the items at the market, and get a separate receipt for items that will be used this week vs pantry storage.

     

    That's a great point.  I know some people often work pantry stocking into their budget money.  They might spend $5/week or $50/month or whatever specifically on items for their pantry.  I know I don't really track it that well.  I just put it all under "food" and write down on my list what needs to be replaced as it's used so that when that item is on sale I can stock up.

     

    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in the General forum
  • 08-01-2011 11:41 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

    Cheryl:
    So do we count those items because they were purchased with that week's food budget funds

    I always look at the dollars actually spent when I am budgeting. I think trying to figure out when items are used would be difficult and would not be as helpful when it's money being spent at the time that really has to be watched.

     

     

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • 08-01-2011 12:09 PM In reply to

    • Gary
    • Top 150 Contributor
    • Joined on 03-28-2007
    • Posts 409

    Re: How Low Can You Go?

    You're making excellent points. Not only in terms of how to save, but buying and consuming are two different things. But, I don't know that I'd worry too much about that. Unless you're trying to stock up a pantry or deplete one, sooner or later you'll consume what you buy. I suppose that you could keep track of what each item costs by marking it before it goes into the pantry. But, except for very short periods, I'd advise against that. Most of us wouldn't be disciplined (or crazy) enough to do that for long. Much better would be to average your grocery spending over a month or two. Kinda like a rolling average. You might now know when you set a 'low spending' record, but you will know what your trend is (and that's what counts). As to separating non-food items, that's really not that difficult. Just put all the food items on the checkout first and pay for them. Then do the same for the non-food items. You'll have 2 separate receipts and it won't take more than an extra moment at the checkout (so you won't get nasty looks from the folks behind you in the line). Most people are surprised at how much they spend for non-food items in the grocery store. And, in most cases, those items are cheaper someplace else. Don't know if that helps the discussion. Sure hope so!
Page 1 of 3 (29 items) 1 2 3 Next >
About Us    Privacy Policy    Writers' Guidelines     Sponsorship     Media    Contact Us



Powered by Community Server (Commercial Edition), by Telligent Systems