Sunday, January 11, 2009

A New Adventure

While an eager college student, I believe my grocery "budget" was about $20 a week.

I was quite the adult, walking around United Grocery Store throwing such sophisticated items in my cart such as low-fat peanut butter and chocolate cookies, Marshmallow Rice Krispies (available only at the Judge Ely United location....which should have warned me), Diet Coke, coffee, Club crackers, and perhaps a bag of frozen chicken if I was feeling healthy.

Don't worry if such a menu sounds a bit lacking in the nutrition was well-supplemented with a steady diet of Whattaburger taquitos, Sonic Route 44's, and Chick-fil-A nuggets.

These days, our grocery budget is a bit higher than my former $20 expenditures. Feeding a family of four can be difficult if one wants to eat a healthy diet, dine at home, and not feel the need to donate plasma on a regular basis in order to pay the bills.

This food crunch has prompted me to invite you, dear reader, on a journey as I track our food spending here at casa de phillips via my blog for four weeks. During this journey, I am going to take a look at several questions:

*Can a family of four eat for $100 a week....accounting for (almost) all meals (Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks), using healthy ingredients?

*Will I have to give up some brands previously loyal to in order to stay within my budget?

*How much can I save each week by clipping coupons?

*How much of my time will I have to devote to getting the best deals on food? Is making various trips to different supermarkets worth a $15 savings?

Come along and take a walk with me as I attempt to answer these questions and others as I explore the topic of feeding one's family on a budget. I will be sharing exactly what I buy, what I am making for my family that week, and how much I spent. As a bit of a teaser, I have already done my shopping for this week, I am almost $20 under-budget, and I was able to purchase such things as organic milk and fresh salmon.

Just enough money left-over for a 11pm taquito run if I feel the need to channel my 22 year old self.


Kelly said...

Ahhh, good 'ol United! Good memories. I look forward to reading your tips...I need them!

DCVol said...

I am so inspired!!! I can't wait to find out all that you learn along the way (but I'm not telling Travis you are doing this :)). By the way, E's cute green and brown outfit below is TOO CUTE. Seriously, adorable.

brianchante said...

What a timely post. I was just at Target doing my grocery shopping. I was looking at the cans of corn. One regular can was $.74 cents the organic can was $1.24. I truly was torn. I felt guilty spending more (b/c I didn't need just one can for what I was making). But then I felt like a horrible Mom for feeding my child something that will do who know's what to him in the future. So, I try to do a little of both that way it isn't all bad and the expense is not all bad. I can't wait to see what words of wisdom you come up with b/c I could use some. =)

Jennifer said...

hey, will be interesting to see what you find. I did decide to do the Grocery Game for a month or so to track and see if I can save enough on paper goods, batteries, justify using the list. I could then put that savings towards the organic/more natural products that we are now buying. Look forward to figuring this out together!

Jennifer H. said...

I am really interested in watching you do this! If it weren't for the $70 a week we have to spend on Nolan's formula, I totally think we could stay under $100 a week. We have been working the Dave Ramsey plan and we are really trying to make some cutbacks. I hope to learn some new things!!

Jordan said...

Okay, I am all for figuring out how to spend less and eat better food, but the burning question I have is this: where, oh where, do find E's clothes? I, too, love the classic little girl looks and you seem to find so many good ones...and I bet they are all on sale! I, too, love smocking and girls clothes and I think you should devote an entire post to that! :)

jennyc said...

I am excited to go along on your journey... Each week I hold my breath at the register to see if I've come under budget... I've tried the grocery game but find it too complicated so usually just clip coupons and look at the circulars. I'm interested in just going every 2 weeks... Maybe that would help! Thanks for sharing - I enjoy your blog! You are such a good writer!