I’ve been focusing on grocery budgets all month long. From an honest discussion talking about Monthly Food Costs, to admitting, at least a little, that we need to track our food expenses (with a free printable monthly food tracker). I reveled in the wisdom of your #1 piece of advice for someone new to the world of cutting food costs without coupons and then last week, I talked the necessary evil of the grocery price list.
I gave you a simple grocery list comparison printable for you to start eying your purchases and asked how many of you have done this before. It was amazing to hear how this was the key factor in many of you turning your grocery budget around, but it isn’t for the faint of heart.
I promised a follow up, and it will come. Going into detail about determining rock bottom prices does necessitate a bit of a tutorial that I didn’t have time to address this week, but at least start tracking your main purchases.
So in my hectic week of company, soccer tournaments, deadlines, and plain ‘ole life what grocery budgeting revelation occurred?
“If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”
Cutting the budget doesn’t just happen, it comes with a plan. In the world of grocery budgeting, it’s even more important because we all eat, every day, many times a day, and if the food isn’t accessible, we splurge.
I can’t remember the last time that I had to dash to the grocery store for an item that I ran out of at the last minute, but it happened this week, hours before company arrived for the weekend.
Life had gotten in the way of my planning. In fact, this month has been a whirl wind of failing to plan, and dinner items I assumed I had stockpiled were gone. GONE! I stood in the grocery aisles staring at the prices and had to take a deep breath.
I payed full price for multiple boxes of lasagna noodles, along with a few other items, and while that isn’t earth shattering, it gave me a moment to pause and realize how important it is that I prioritize my meal planning. I spent nearly $2 more for those noodles than my rock bottom price.
Some of you may role your eyes at $2, but for me, I know the power of “compound interest.” $2 x many products x 52 weeks = a whole lot of spending money. The little things here and there ADD UP!
But this is what I also realized – Just Do the Best You Can!
It’s easy to beat ourselves up, get flustered or feel inadequate that we aren’t saving what others are on this journey of balancing our budget. Realize that we glean from others who may have more knowledge on the subject, but then just do what you can.
We are all in different seasons of our lives, and sometimes, just getting to the grocery store is a major accomplishment. Celebrate the small steps you are taking to reduce your family budget and go from there.
For me, it meant printing out my Printable Weekly Menu Planner and brainstorming my favorite meal ideas. My goal is to have one month worth of ideas on paper. That doesn’t mean I would ever stick to a month plan at a time, it’s not feasible for my family, but I want a mixture of ten minute dinner ideas, along with those that I can take my time with (usually, those are only one a week during sports season.) Use my Free Printable Monthly Menu Planner to start jotting those ideas down.
I’m using Tasty Tuesday for some meal inspiration, and always feel some instant success.
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