The Goal of the Grocery Budget Challenge is to be creative with our meal planning and grocery shopping so that we aren’t over-spending. We don’t want to make our families miserable with bland meals, boring snacks, and not enough food in the house. Lately when I see my bill at the check out, I’m shocked at how few groceries are actually going home with me. This will be a challenge where we’ll need discipline, support, and planning.
On the 30th of each month, between January and November in 2014, we will meet here to discuss our challenges and successes for the month. There will also be action steps every month due by the next meeting.
How did we do in January?
January’s homework was to figure out your monthly grocery budget and start meal planning. If you’re just starting with us in February, read my 11 Simple Meal Planning Tips to help you get started.
My success: My January grocery budget was $450. Thankfully we came in right on budget for the month. Part of my motivation was that I’m hosting this challenge. It would look pretty bad if the host blew up her grocery budget, but I also remained diligent planning our menu and my shopping list every week. Meal planning remains my number one way to stay within my grocery budget.
My challenge: My family is getting bored with some of my staple meals. “Are we having THAT again?”, was cried more than once this month. They’re not being bratty, because the truth is, I’m getting bored with those meals too. I need to find some new recipes that are quick, easy, and tasty.
Action Step 1: Plan your grocery budget for February. Take into account any special occasions, such as the Super Bowl, Valentine’s Day, birthdays, anniversaries, and pot lucks.
Action Step 2: Continue to plan your meals and grocery list. For my system, read my 11 Simple Meal Planning Tips.
Action Step 3: New this month, clean out and organize your refrigerator, freezers, and kitchen pantry. I’ll be organizing my kitchen too and (of course) blogging about it at some point. By keeping our kitchens organized, menu planning will be much easier, we’ll reduce our food waste, and we’ll be less likely to buy duplicates.
Action Step 4: Meet back here on Friday, February 28, ready to discuss your successes and challenges for the month.
How did you do in January? Did you plan your meals regularly? Did you come in right on budget or did you go over or under budget? Please share in the comments. Also, if you’re blogging about the Grocery Budget Challenge, feel free to leave the link in the comments.
This post is linked to Thrifty Thursday and Fabulously Frugal Thursday and Financially Savvy Saturdays.