Sunday, March 6, 2011

Monthly Shopping update plus WOW prices are going up

A couple of you have written to me that you also do once a month shopping. I have started doing this and have a budget of $285 which includes 4 people's food, toiletries, household products plus dog and cat food. I have a seperate budget for livestock feed which we buy at the local co-op. So, today is March 6th and I'm just now getting around to doing my March shopping. I still had some wonderful stuff left from February so my March shopping trip today came in at $129.xx! For the whole month! So, I'm pretty excited about that. I do have a few notes though about this shopping trip, hopefully someone will find them useful.

1.) If you have got eggs, USE THEM!
Our hens are finally starting to lay consistantly since it is getting warmer. We have 10 hens and are getting 8 eggs a day. If you are getting eggs, you really have to be creative in your meal plan in order to utlize them. Of course I use them in normal baking and such but I've found that it really helps to stretch our budget if I use the in main courses as well. Here are a few examples:
- at the first of the week I normally hardboil about a couple dozen eggs and I go ahead and peel them and refridgerate them. My 5 year old LOVES them as snacks, I like them in salads and sandwiches and so does my husband. Egg salad sandwich on freshly made bread is DELISH.
- make scrambled egg burritos, just scramble the eggs, then I put them in a tortilla and put salsa, cheese, sour cream and black beans in it and it makes a great dinner. Very easy, and a great way to turn your eggs into a dinner.
-scrambled egg sandwiches
-Quiches, I have found lots of great recipes in magazines as well as by searching online.

2.)WOW stuff is getting expensive. Although I normally buy my milk from a local farmer, I do try to keep up with prices at the grocery store. Normally a gallon of Horizon white milk is $4.99, today it was $6.79!!!! Wow, I was shocked. A few other things that I normally buy like Kashi Go Lean Crunch cereal, a store brand of quinoa, and the store brand of molassas has also gone up in price. I guess I say that to say that I really think that the crisis in the Middle East among other factors are really going to drive not just our gas prices up but all of our grocery prices up tremendously. I'm not going to get political here, ( because it would take waaaaayyyy too long) but I'm convinced that the problems over there are going to effect us here in America more than any of us would like to think. So my solution is two fold: first of all every time I go to the store I buy 5 things for my "stockpile". These are mainly things like dried beans, rice, pasta etc. but also things like medical supplies, bandages, matches , bottled water etc. This will be helpful not only in a time of extreme crisis, but also in the case when food prices go up so high that people can't afford them.
Second, I'm certainly planting more in our garden this year than years past. I also plan on putting up more foods than normal for my stockpile. I urge you all to do the same also!


  1. So agree with the food prices and we are doing the same thing (more stockpiling and bigger garden).

  2. We have started buying more when we find "buy one, get one free" deals at our grocery. I just wish I had a bigger pantry and freezer! Enjoy those eggs!

  3. Oh, and by the way, I'm amazed that you can feed a family of four and provide toiletries, etc. for so little. I'm not close to that yet. What do you think is most helpful in reaching that goal?

  4. Shopping sales and matching with coupons really help. Also stocking up when something is on sale, a while back they had .50 cents off of Mahatma Rice, and my Kroger has them for .99 cents. ( My kroger doubles coupons up to .50 cents, so I ended up getting the rice for FREE). I collected coupons from all my friends and relatives, went online and traded for some etc. and got over 100 pounds of rice, several different flavors too.

    Also making cheap meals. Since we don't eat meat , we don't have to spend money on that. A very cheap meal is a scrambled egg sandwich. I can make homeade bread for about .56 cents a loaf, then the eggs are from the chicken, so I get a whole meal for 4 people for .56 cents.

    I get creative with our meals also, using up what we have. I canned TONS of tomatoes last year, so we have a lot of chili, soups, casseroles etc. that used the canned tomatoes.

    Some months certainly cost more than others, depending on what is needed, but I try to buy in bulk as much as possible which also can save a bit of money.

  5. I am really going to try to work on my stockpiling too. I was wondering how in the world you spent so little, then I read you don't eat meat. There it is! :) I wish I had a bigger pantry too and a little freezer, but it isn't going to happen. Do rice or beans go bad?? Thanks for the post!

  6. The only meat we do is is deer meat ( which is free from either my husband, brothers or father) or freshly caught fish ( again from one of my family). Dried beans and rice are wonderful stockpiles as well as staples in most meals around here. We have no telling how many pounds of rice, as well as pounds upon pounds of all different kinds of dried beans. It took me several months when I started, but once I started buying in bulk and really planning meals, it has gotten so much easier and less expensive. This summer when garden is in full swing, we will probably dip down even lower! Thanks for checking out my blog!