December 21, 2010

Meal Planning Meltdown

I am trying to plan our meals for two weeks so that i'm ready with a list when i go shopping friday (i know it's christmas eve and probably an insane idea).  i go to the grocery store every 2 weeks on friday.  so, usually sometime between monday and wednsday i sit down and plan what we will have for lunch and dinner for the next two weeks and make a grocery list on thursday. 

i usually spend around $225 per trip.  that includes groceries for 2 weeks and household products, including pull ups, paper products and personal care products.  right now, i'm trying to figure out how to shave a little more off of that total.  i'm trying to teach george to start using the potty (the new baby will use cloth diapers), we only buy paper plates for large family gatherings, i've already cut our paper towel use in half.  as far as food goes, i don't buy many ready-to-eat foods.  i don't make our bread products too often, like i should, so i buy those.  i think that's about all, though.  i don't buy convenience food.  everything we eat takes time to make.  i buy ingredients, not meals.  the same goes with snacks.  occasionally, i will buy some fruit snacks or a bag of pretzels, but not very often.  sometimes, i look at ads and go to different stores to get a bargain, but since i started buying  more store brands and less name brands, they don't really help me too much.  the same is true with coupons.  they are good for some things, but you don't find too many coupons for staples, like milk, eggs and flour.
 
so, the question remains.  what else can i do?  now that it's cold outside, i have incorporated more soups and pastas in our meals because they're cheap, warm and comforting.  one of our problems is that a couple of the kids are pretty picky and, truth be told, i am too, though not as bad as the kids.

 
DO YOU PLAN YOUR MEALS? 
DO YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT BUDGETING OR MEAL PLANNING? 
I'M DYING TO KNOW IF THE AMOUNT I SPENT IS COMPARABLE TO WAT OTHERS SPEND.  DO YOU THINK IT'S TOO MUCH?  DO YOU HAVE ANY SUGGESTIONS OR RESOURCES THAT COULD HELP?

3 comments:

  1. I follow the Frugal Chef online. You can sign up for her weekly meal plan that will come to you email inbox. Some stuff has been helpful, but I think a lot is regional, too.

    She also has a lot of resources on her site. If I missed my grocery store's circular that week, I can go to her site and she has a list of stores with their current circulars and coupons. If she does not have your usual store listed. Send her a note and she will try and add it.

    I would appreciate any pasta/soup recipes you could share.

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  2. You and I are spending just about the same amount. I spend $100 a week for all meals, dog food, paper items and toiletries. Basically everything.

    There does come a point where coupons don't really help much but shopping more than one store is usually the way I can save the most.

    ReplyDelete
  3. We spend about that much a week, I think. We're feeding 8 people. I try to not buy too many snack foods. But sometimes life gets crazy and I need some shortcuts.

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