The last full week of the challenge (though I may need to add two days next week to make a full month) has not been difficult at all. I've learned a great deal.
1: There are some things I need to stock up more heavily upon and some are just about right as they are.
2: Forgotten methods of trimming costs do return.
3: We have far more food than I thought we had in the house.
4: I probably can trim my grocery budget by about 1/4 and we won't notice too much of a difference. I've stayed in 'feed the family' mindset and there's only the two of us.
5:We are frequently blessed with foodstuffs. I listed our blessings for this past week in my Frugal Friday post for last week.
6:We didn't 'suffer' for this week. I just thought differently about what I was buying and the quantity I was used to buying. We managed snacks and meals without privation. We ate meat nearly every day of this challenge
Monday: breakfast: Scrambled eggs, hash brown potatoes, toasted Muffins, coffee
lunch: Leftover Spaghetti, Toasted Bread, frozen lemonade
supper: *Steak, *Corn on the Cob, sliced tomatoes
Eggs, muffins, and potatoes on hand from last week. The entire meal at lunch was leftovers from the week before. Between lunch and dinner, I went over to see Mama. While out I stopped at the local grocery and picked up a variety of grocery items, which included sale priced steaks, corn on the cob, bread, milk, lettuce, cheddar and cold cuts.
Tuesday: breakfast: Pancakes, *Sausage, syrup
lunch: Veggie Cheese Pizzas, sodas
supper: *Club Sandwich, Chips, pickle spears
I used pancake mix, the remnants of two bottles of syrup, one good maple, one good homemade with maple flavoring. The sausages were bought on clearance at the start of this challenge and were in the freezer. Lunch was Chance's treat to me. He was very specific that this was his treat, coming out of his allowance and not to come from my challenge budget. Wasn't that sweet? Our supper consisted of leftover bacon, swiss, lettuce and Saturday's tomato purchase, pickles from fridge. My sole purchase for this meal was the turkey coldcuts.
Wednesday: breakfast: Bagel and cream cheese, coffee
Dinner: Fried chicken, Macaroni Salad
work lunch: Cold Cut sandwich, grapes, Heirloom cherry tomatoes with blue cheese dressing, *Hershey bar, water, soda, *peanuts
supper: *Nachos with leftover mango salsa
Every item used was either frozen or pantry and purchased weeks ago, except the cheddar on the nachos and the other starred items.
Made a loaf of *banana bread this week, using up the leftover bananas from last week. Discovered two broken eggs in this dozen...That is getting to be an old old story. I check them carefully before purchase, the clerk at the checkout checks them...Is it the bag boy breaking them when handling them? The last two eggs, so had to buy eggs when I went to see Mama, so I could finish banana bread.
Thursday: breakfasts: Fried eggs and toast (Chance)
1 slice banana bread and mango smoothie (me)
work lunch: Fried chicken, macaroni salad, Banana bread, Celery stuffed with cream cheese, peanuts, soda, water
supper/lunch: Freebies given to me: pimento cheese sandwich, chicken breast, coleslaw
I felt too nervous to eat prior to the memorial service. Instead I went without. Mistake. Made headache turn to sick migraine. Yuck. Came home from memorial service to lie down. Alan brougt foods from Mama's: chicken, sweet potatoes, coleslaw, tomatoes, pimento cheese sandwiches. He had as much stuff for himself as he gave me...
Friday: breakfasts: peanut butter toast (Chance)
cereal with blueberries (me)
work lunch: Cubed steak sandwiches, *wheat thins, carrot/celery sticks, oatmeal cookies, soda, water, peanuts, peaches/cottage cheese
dinner: Tomato and Basil Mayo sandwich, lemonade
supper: Burger, tomato slices, mac salad
Saturday: breakfast: Waffles, sausages
work lunch: Pimento cheese sandwiches, chips, lemonade, peanut butter crackers, Lettuce and tomato salad with macaroni salad atop, oatmeal cookies
dinner: 6inch Cold Cut Subway, chips, nectarine
Sunday: breakfast: banana nut bread, coffee
work lunch: pimento cheese sandwich, 6 inch cold cut Subway, chips, oatmeal cookies, nectarine
supper: * french fries
My taco salad was made up of some leftover spaghetti sauce re-seasoned with cumin and chili powder to make a different dish from it. I'd meant to make Calzones this week but simply didnt feel I wanted anything that tasted like pizza. Note that supper was a single item. My salad at lunch was pretty substantial. The meat sauce was made with lots of vegetables and I added tomatoes, lettuce aplenty. I wasn't terribly hungry come supper time but wanted something. Frozen fries heated as oven fries suited me, kept it lower in fat and hit the spot.
5 ears corn $1.99~with leftovers
Turkey coldcut packet $3.89
18 large eggs $2.29
sausages $1.99~with leftovers
Hershey bars: $3.00
Carrots 1# $.69
2 6-packs soda $6.66
wheat thins $1
Subway sandwich $5
local nectarines and Peaches $5
frozen french fries $3.99
I ended this week with leftovers of every single item on my above list except steak and the Subway sandwich. These foods will easily carry me through the final two days challenge without adding any further costs to my month, in addition to pantry/freezer items on hand when the challenge began. I feel the challenge was a success and while I cannot show cash as savings, I do have more full pantry shelves and as much meat in my freezer as when I started so I deem the month over all a success.
Average of spending over 4 weeks: $51.64 per week.