Author Topic: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017  (Read 13016 times)

ringer707

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #50 on: February 04, 2017, 06:31:05 PM »
Joining in! Really trying to cut back. We average about $250/mo but had some really high months last year when we spent about two months in the hospital with a family member and were eating a lot of take out.

I had to drive out of state today and packed both breakfast and lunch so no stops for me. My husband wanted to order Chinese food when we got home and I told him if he wanted it he had to go out and get it (no delivery in our area). I knew he wouldn't feel like leaving the house so we had a great home cooked meal instead :)

akzidenz

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #51 on: February 05, 2017, 06:32:45 PM »
akzidenz: Don't worry, my food spending was about the same as yours before I discovered this site and got serious. It didn't take much effort to bring that number way down (as you are already doing)!


I'm doing well with my crockpot goals!  Made a fabulous pot-roast that I've been eating for the last few days.

Unfortunately I have found that by meal #3 in a row of the same thing, no matter how delicious, I start to get pretty tired of it. I need to develop a good system for freezing food.

I've also begun planning my future meal rotation. The goal is to perfect two weeks' worth of amazing recipes, then cancel Blue Apron. The main reason I love meal kits is that they reduce the need to spend time planning meals, but the rotation should solve that problem for me. 

(Relatedly, I am shifting my entire wardrobe to be fitted pants with grey/black tunics in natural fibers [+ a select group of accessories] for similar reasons. My goal is to develop new signature "look" that is striking but comfortable and does not require much thought on a daily basis.)

marble_faun, thanks for the encouragement! Honestly, participating in these forums has been really galvanizing and encouraging. Whenever I feel an impulse to spend unnecessarily, I'll read through an MMM forum thread on my phone and it renews my motivation. It's nice to have a little community (I'm very susceptible to social pressure, so I cope by trying to stick around people who have the values I want to practice).

Re: having a signature look, I solidified a capsule-wardrobe-like thing a few years ago and it made life really soothing and easy. I have a few stock outfits per season and a set of items that mix and match easily. Last summer I had blue jeans, breezy/flowing white pants, and wide slightly cropped black pants—and then I had a collection of silk/linen tees in a few colors that I could throw together with any of the pants and feel well-dressed in.

(White pants & silk tees don't seem very practical for everyday wear, but I'm very careful to avoid spills!)

OurTown

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #52 on: February 08, 2017, 02:18:37 PM »
So far I sort of suck at this challenge.  The rest of you, however, are awesome sauce.

Rimu05

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #53 on: February 10, 2017, 09:22:54 AM »
I'm ashamed to say, I've gotten even worse the past few months. I am even buying breakfast now and coffee. UGH. OTL

monstermonster

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #54 on: February 10, 2017, 09:44:46 AM »
I've done OK this year. I'm at $24.10 this year on restaurants. Interestingly, 69% of that is burritos at my favorite burrito place that is on the other side of town (a date night, a planned lunch with a friend when I was in his part of town, a sober night out with another friend after work). I feel pretty good about all those expenses.



One was something I sort of regret: I do a work-trade shift one afternoon a week at a hot yoga studio, and I went to the fancy juice place AFTER I ate my packed lunch because I was still ravenous. The granola cup with cashew creme was good, but not $7.50 worth of good.

I've only got $8.00 left in the restaurant budget for the month, and planned out-of-town guests coming for the MMM meetup later this month, so I'll probably move some of my totally unspent bar budget into the "restaurant" category. We won't eat out much, but at least once, since Portland's charms are its cheap & delicious food.

MandalayVA

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #55 on: February 10, 2017, 11:04:19 AM »
I don't forsee us eating out until we move in June.  We'll probably have a final brunch at the place that gave us the idea to move where we're living now, then again on the road to Orlando.  I won't deny we may try some places in our new domicile (winter park has shake shack) but I'm looking forward to having more time to cook.
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iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #56 on: February 10, 2017, 11:33:20 AM »
Still going strong. Haven't eaten out yet this year.
DH has gone out once- but to be fair, he didn't agree to the challenge :)

dividend

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #57 on: February 10, 2017, 11:55:22 AM »
January is a restaurant heavy month - it contains my city's Restaurant Week, plus my husband and my brother's birthdays.  Restaurant Week is a ton of restaurants doing set menu $15 lunches and $30 dinners.  Depending on the restaurant, that can either be a rip-off (local pizza deli where it's hard to spend $15 for lunch), or a really good deal (homemade pasta trio tasting + ceasar salad + dessert that would normally run ~$30), and I like to use it to try new places too.  I took my brother for sushi, and my husband to a very pricey old-timey steak house that we love.  Spendy month, but no regrets.   

I declared February "Cook At Home" month as a sort of reset.  Well, that, and when I did a thorough pantry/freezer inventory I "found" so much food that we could literally eat for months.  I'll eat at other people's places if I'm invited, and I'll eat free food at work when it's offered, but other than that, zero eating out.  So far, so good.  Eating homemade lentil soup and an orange as I type this, having turned down 2 different offers to meet for lunch.  I balance it out by inviting friends over for dinner or board games or super hero movies and providing copious amounts of oil popped popcorn and an open beer fridge (which people contribute to sometimes).  I've been using Google Drive to good effect to capture recipes to try, track my inventory, do meal planning, and compile my own sort of "cookbook" of recipes that are worth repeating.  Tried a crockpot pork recipe with maple syrup and beer, and a pressure cooker mushroom risotto recipe this week that are both keepers.  I'm doing 52 weeks of crockpot recipes this year - I've done 6 so far! 

I spent $482 in January, and so far $0 in February.  If I end February <$50, I'll consider it a success.

OneStep

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #58 on: February 11, 2017, 05:39:05 AM »
So far so good for the year. No money spent at a restaurant. Unfortunately my parents and grandfather will be coming into town tomorrow and they want to go out to lunch. I would prefer to eat at home, but since they don't come up often I don't feel horrible going out.

marble_faun

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #59 on: February 11, 2017, 11:57:40 AM »
I finally learned about freezing meat!  This will be key to my transformation into a Home Cook. The victuals are properly stored, all bundled up in special freezer paper.  We also put up an iron spice rack (purchased almost for free thanks to a tip from a different Mustachian thread) and acquired some new, exciting spices. At last I am ready to begin replicating my favorite Blue Apron meals and start to kick the meal-kit habit!

It was also a good week for non-restauranting (by my former standards of eating out every meal). We ordered a pizza and went out for brunch. C'est tout!

Tangential thoughts:

I used to get Thai take-out allllll the time, to the point where the restaurant employees knew my name and recognized my voice the moment I called in. Now I rarely stop by there. Last time I ordered (several weeks ago), they were like "Where have you been???" and I could proudly state that I now mostly cook my own food. (Though I still love them!)

This got me thinking about how I have enjoyed being a regular at restaurants. I'm a creature of habit. I always go to the same places and order the same things. In the past I became well-known to staff even at seemingly impersonal chains like Dunkin Donuts and Domino's. And recently, my husband stopped into a corner store in a city neighborhood where we lived YEARS ago, and the manager asked how I was doing. 

In a way I miss that aspect of going out and being a familiar presence in our local neighborhood establishments. Somehow, this gave me the sense of being a part of the city community and not just a nameless face in the crowd. I know it's a bit silly, since I'm a customer and the employees are paid to be pleasant. But my feeling is real!
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OneStep

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #60 on: February 11, 2017, 01:34:58 PM »
I used to get Thai take-out allllll the time, to the point where the restaurant employees knew my name and recognized my voice the moment I called in. Now I rarely stop by there. Last time I ordered (several weeks ago), they were like "Where have you been???" and I could proudly state that I now mostly cook my own food. (Though I still love them!)

This got me thinking about how I have enjoyed being a regular at restaurants. I'm a creature of habit. I always go to the same places and order the same things.

This is me!!! We had significantly cut our restaurant spending with the exception of Thai food. Still "had" to have it once a week. I finally went to an Asian Market and picked up the ingredients for my favorite dish, Pad See Ew. I've gotten close but not quite the same as the Thai place. It's good enough and much less expensive. We had the same relationship with the restaurant. Knew our name and order as soon as they heard our voice.

ringer707

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #61 on: February 14, 2017, 01:13:25 PM »
Still doing pretty well, we did cave and buy chinese takeout on Friday night. I don't consider this too bad though, since for $25 I got four meals out of my food and my husband got three. Husband is traveling for work this week so no plans for a fancy Valentine's dinner and he loaded me up with leftovers to eat. We have a ton of food in our house right now so I'm going to say no to eating out this weekend. 

OneStep

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #62 on: February 18, 2017, 06:05:30 AM »
So far so good for the year. No money spent at a restaurant. Unfortunately my parents and grandfather will be coming into town tomorrow and they want to go out to lunch. I would prefer to eat at home, but since they don't come up often I don't feel horrible going out.

Well we are still at $0 spending at restaurants for the year. Grandfather insisted on taking care of the check. It was a happy surprise. Have been several occasions where we wanted to go out and get something real quick, but once we started prepping dinner we were glad we didn't go out. Almost 2 months down.

Pizzabrewer

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #63 on: February 18, 2017, 06:31:25 AM »
I work in a restaurant and can get one free meal per day, anything on the menu. I usually get a sandwich or a few sliders and not the $28 steak.

I also have a 70% discount on any purchases so my wife and I do dinner occasionally. It's still not cheap though, with tax and tip (on un-discounted amount) it'll be $25-30. Better than going to Longhorn and spending $60-75 (which we used to do regularly) but still not Mustachian. So we don't do it often.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2017, 06:40:59 AM by Pizzabrewer »

akzidenz

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #64 on: February 18, 2017, 06:36:52 PM »
My eating out expenses in 2016 averaged…about $650 per month…January was an enormous success in cutting down my restaurant/bar spending—only $320! I'm feeling all fired up about going even lower, now that I've proved to myself I can cut down and still feel perfectly happy. My goal for February is $200.

Checking in on my February goal! I've spent about $130 (four meals out, two drinks). I'm surprised—this is way lower than my usual spending, but I don't feel deprived at all. It's comforting to know I can adjust to a lower level of spending and still be very happy. If I can do a few months of $200, I might try to push it even lower…

Genevieve

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #65 on: February 18, 2017, 09:37:31 PM »
Oh man, this is my WORST area of spending. I'm currently on track for 10% less than January... but January was basically $600. So... still bad. I've been concentrating on meal prep so there aren't excuses.

I've only gone out for lunch once, but Mr. G and I have gone out 3x together, mostly as part of having fun on the weekends. We have lots of coffee too. I get coffee instead of a coworking space.

What strategies have you used to help your eating out habit? 

1967mama

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #66 on: February 19, 2017, 01:39:44 AM »
Ended up being at an appointment with teen son a fair bit longer than anticipated - would have been so easy to hit a Mcd drive they but we were only five minutes from home and I knew we had lots of good leftovers in the fridge....maybe this is the key for me to stop eating at $@&"#*^ restaurants!

Mezzie

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #67 on: February 19, 2017, 07:40:58 AM »
I'm stopping March 1st and intend not to eat out until my husband and I go to Hawaii in June. In the meantime, I've been eating out a lot this month. It may very well even out.
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akzidenz

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #68 on: February 19, 2017, 01:49:08 PM »
Oh man, this is my WORST area of spending. I'm currently on track for 10% less than January... but January was basically $600. So... still bad. I've been concentrating on meal prep so there aren't excuses.

I've only gone out for lunch once, but Mr. G and I have gone out 3x together, mostly as part of having fun on the weekends. We have lots of coffee too. I get coffee instead of a coworking space.

What strategies have you used to help your eating out habit?

A few strategies I've been employing (as someone who's pretty spendy in this area, and in 2016 I was consistently hitting $600ish too!)
  • Buy fun frozen foods from Trader Joe's. Lots of things I can't make myself easily (like sweet potato gnocchi!) tick that box of "fun" and "novel" (but are still cheap compared to eating out!)
  • Finding inexpensive date night ideas, like buying/making popcorn and watching a movie together at home (super cute, super cheap)
  • Going out on dates/hangouts with friends and getting tea, bubble tea, coffee, ice cream, &c instead of a full meal ($5 versus $20+)
  • Having beer/wine at home, and resolving to drink at home instead of drinking while out
  • Especially if I'm going out to a concert/show where the expectation is we'll drink there—drinking at home/at a friend's home, so I can politely beg off buying a beer/drink when out
  • Having a bag of chocolates (Lindt truffles!) at home and taking some with me when I go on my commute in the mornings—I feel less tempted to grab coffee at the conveniently situated café right by the train station, if I know I have something in my pocket to nibble on already
  • Generally having indulgent snack foods at home that I really enjoy eating: fruits, chocolates, nice crackers and cheese, so I can have a luxurious at-home snacking experience, which means I don't go out to eat "fun" foods
The big theme of why I eat out is "it's more fun!" so I'm trying to find ways to have that fun at home. And I think it's still useful for me to be able to eat out and spend time with friends—so I'm just trying to find ways to do that in a very affordable manner.

Genevieve

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #69 on: February 24, 2017, 05:18:12 PM »
@akzidenz - Great ideas! Thank you!

More later.

1967mama

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #70 on: February 25, 2017, 01:51:15 AM »
Akzidnez -- Your list is great! It reminds me of a frugal living thing I read years ago -- to drop everything by one level at a time. So if restaurants are our problem, buying a few nice things at the grocery store to eat at home is a step down from eating out. Premium cable package? Drop it to basic before you give it up entirely. Then drop to Netflix. Fancy shampoo? Drop to a drugstore variety.

Anyhoo, thanks for posting

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #71 on: February 25, 2017, 06:34:08 AM »
No restaurants in January or February :)

Ironically, I'm going to break this gauntlet to go out to eat with a Mustachian who contacted me because she will be visiting the city I live in.  But at least we picked an inexpensive place to go.

marble_faun

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #72 on: February 25, 2017, 11:07:19 AM »
In the last week I felt really fatigued and just wasn't in the mood for anything in the fridge.  So I went back to my old take-out ways.

It turns out that I am pregnant!  Which might account for the tiredness and food flip-flopping. 

Now I have to figure out what pregnant people are supposed to eat.  Sounds like I need to say goodbye to rare steaks and gooey eggs benedict for a while, so that might help bring restaurant costs down.  Goodbye for a while, five-coffee brunch!
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akzidenz

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #73 on: February 26, 2017, 11:59:20 AM »
I'm glad I could help! 1967mama, I love that idea of slowly taking things down and growing accustomed to each new level of frugal living.

marble_faun, congratulations! Wishing you a very comfortable and pleasantly frugal pregnancy.

I have a much less exciting update…so far I've spent $222 eating out in February. I'm on my way to brunch with a friend (that I haven't seen in two years!) now, which should be &lt;$30, and that will be my last eating out expense of the month.

I spent $319 last month, so this constitutes a modest but satisfying reduction.

Genevieve

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #74 on: February 26, 2017, 02:38:12 PM »
We're on track for a combined month of $430, which is 56% of our long term average of ... $755. So a big change for the better, but oh my gosh, what a staggering sum of money.

We did stock up on groceries so our overall food spending is lower than the average but is still pretty crazy high.

recklesslysober

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #75 on: February 27, 2017, 11:24:52 AM »
The last two months of eating out for me: $21.72/$0.00. Very happy to hit that no spending this month! I did get taken out for dinner on my birthday but I didn't pay for that.

OneStep

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #76 on: March 02, 2017, 12:27:12 PM »
Didn't spend a single $ at a restaurant for Jan or Feb. We went out once with family and were not allowed to pay for our own. Work has provided a couple of lunches and one awards banquet in which my wife won a Employee of the Year award for her business group. My wife is super awesome and so is not going to restaurants!

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #77 on: March 03, 2017, 08:31:16 PM »
I don't like eating out any more because the opportunity cost leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

monstermonster

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #78 on: March 03, 2017, 08:37:58 PM »
I don't like eating out any more because the opportunity cost leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
*badabing*

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #79 on: March 06, 2017, 07:12:29 AM »
I made it until March 5th before I went to a restaurant.

Technically, I didn't order anything, so ....


But less technically, I ate half of my husband's $11 meal.  Which brings my total restaurant spending up to $5.50 for this year.

As I posted before, it was ironically to meet up with a MMM forum poster who was in town.  And it was really delicious falafel, so- worth it on both accounts.

ringer707

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #80 on: March 06, 2017, 07:28:46 AM »
Did pretty well in February. $122, which is a little less than half of what we usually do. Still some opportunities to cut so hopefully more progress this month.

Of course it does not help that sparks started shooting out of the knobs of our stove on Saturday... one trip to the Sears Scratch and Dent later and we have a new oven, but it's not being delivered until Friday. Since I am not risking a house fire, the circuit breaker to the current oven is staying off. We did get Chinese takeout on Saturday night that we are still eating leftovers from, but hoping we can be creative this week and not get anymore takeout, or at least limit it to a Costco pizza.

LindseyC

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #81 on: March 06, 2017, 07:50:54 AM »
Oh I am in for this one! My boyfriend loves eating out and I have fallen into the habit. 2017 is going to be the year I break that habit.

The first two weeks of January I spent $155 eating out, the majority of it at a weekend wedding that was super expensive. From January 13th to March 3rd I did not eat out at all, no takeaway or convenience foods either. March 4th I ate out and it was expensive at $46 but I had enough leftovers for another full meal and a snack.

I was sorting thinking an average of $50 a month at the beginning of the year, but I am fairly certain I can get that average much lower (although I'm right on it as of now)

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #82 on: March 06, 2017, 08:47:31 AM »
We have been doing pretty good. No eating out this year so far.

We have had a couple of convenience grocery items instead, but that is okay. We brought some roast chicken over for Grandma's birthday, she said we were not allowed to cook or do anything that would cost  "effort" This was a good compromise to going out to eat (which really none of us enjoy)

We were picking up a bulk food order and Hubby had left work and hadn't had a chance to stop for lunch, so he was hungry. We tossed around the idea of going to a restaurant. Figured because we were tired and hungry wasn't a good reason to go eat, so he added some extra almonds to our order and we enjoyed them on the drive home.

Our grocery store has premade sushi on sale on Saturdays. Hubs doesn't like sushi at all, but it is one of my favorites, but too much work for me to make just for myself. So he stuck some in the cart for me. I didn't argue :)

We do have to go out to celebrate FIL's retirement. We have been told that we are having dinner out to celebrate (the last few times they have wanted to go out, I have been able to convince them to come to our house instead) Not really looking forward to that, especially how it was stated, but I suppose retirement only happens once - hopefully.

1967mama

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #83 on: March 14, 2017, 01:59:12 AM »
I am going away with my husband for three days, two nights and am challenging myself to NOT eat at restaurants the whole time we are away. He will be at work things and I will bring a cooler and camp in our hotel room, go for long walks, read, etc.

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #84 on: March 18, 2017, 06:08:30 PM »
DH went out for BBQ tonight for a friend's birthday, so our yearly tally is:
DH: 2.5 meals out
Me: 0.5 meals out

OneStep

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #85 on: March 20, 2017, 08:56:33 AM »
We made it until 3/19. Last night after working outside all day, the wife and I decided to pick up Thai food. It was delicious, however not sure if it was worth the $28 we spent. Good news is that it has reaffirmed why we have not been eating out. Cost a lot of money and although delicious its not worth it.

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #86 on: March 24, 2017, 07:16:30 AM »
My parents are in town, and I told them about this challenge.

Their responses:

Mom: "Is that a challenge for you? Maybe you should challenge yourself to eat out every day for a month. I don't think you could do it."
Dad: "It only counts if you pay, right? I mean, I can take you out? Because I want to go out to eat."

OneStep

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #87 on: March 25, 2017, 06:43:58 AM »
My parents are the same way. No matter how often we tell them we prefer to eat at home and not eat out they take it as we are having money problems. They bring my grandfather up with them about once a month and always want to go out, even when we offer to cook burgers which is what they want anyway. Most recent time my grandfather asked if we were having money problems and offered a loan. He was shocked when we explained that we were living this way on purpose and that we are closing in on being debt free minus the house.

MissPiggy

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #88 on: April 03, 2017, 06:58:22 AM »
I'm so glad this thread exists!

As someone with uber frugal parents, I've come around to their way of living and realised that a wasteful life is time, energy and financial freedom thrown down the drain.

Determined to kick the take-away habit. These figures put me to shame:
- $472 spent on take-away and drinks last month ($358 was on take-away food, $96 on alcohol)
- $1329 spent on take-away and drinks this year alone ($839 on take-away food, $414 on alcohol and $76 on misc entertainment)

and here's the big, shameful spend:
- $10,382 spent on take-away and alcohol last year. That's $7573 on take-away food and restaurant dining, $2454 spent on alcohol and $355 on misc.

All I can say is:





xx Miss Piggy

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The Earnest Addiction - A Millennial's Journey to FIRE
https://theearnestaddiction.wordpress.com/

recklesslysober

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #89 on: April 03, 2017, 11:41:42 AM »
and here's the big, shameful spend:
- $10,382 spent on take-away and alcohol last year. That's $7573 on take-away food and restaurant dining, $2454 spent on alcohol and $355 on misc.

The good news is there is soooo much room to cut back and you can make some seriously epic progress right away! I spent about $3,500 on meals out last year ($290/month) and this year so far $21.72 ($7.24/month).

marble_faun

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #90 on: April 03, 2017, 10:01:23 PM »
Ugh. I've been really bad about restaurants in the last month. I experienced a personal loss of sorts and reverted to my comforting old ways of ordering Thai food, pizza, and Mexican.

Time to dust myself off and get back to cooking.
"Time flies pursue it Man. For why? thy days are but a Span."

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #91 on: April 04, 2017, 08:10:05 AM »
We took my Dad out for his birthday, so now our yearly tally is:
DH: 3.5 meals out
Me: 1.5 meals out
Purchased for others: 2 meals (Mom and Dad)

I did however manage to NOT eat any of the take-out meals I had planned for the hospital stay. I decided the hospital food was good enough, even though I had really been craving some of those other things.  And I ordered multiple entrees so DH got hospital food too, so my 3 days there we purchased no food at all (even for home groceries).

MissPiggy

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #92 on: April 06, 2017, 08:09:24 AM »
and here's the big, shameful spend:
- $10,382 spent on take-away and alcohol last year. That's $7573 on take-away food and restaurant dining, $2454 spent on alcohol and $355 on misc.

The good news is there is soooo much room to cut back and you can make some seriously epic progress right away! I spent about $3,500 on meals out last year ($290/month) and this year so far $21.72 ($7.24/month).

Well done!! $21.72 on take away meals- great improvement on LY even though it's was still relatively low
xx Miss Piggy

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The Earnest Addiction - A Millennial's Journey to FIRE
https://theearnestaddiction.wordpress.com/

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #93 on: April 25, 2017, 11:14:03 AM »
Had more visitors to see the new baby, but when we took them out it was to Huhot where I had a free meal. (Actually when they took us out I had a free meal at mellow mushroom too. So I saved them a bit)

The tally
DH: 4.5
Me: 1.5
Paid for others: 4

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #94 on: May 06, 2017, 08:08:35 PM »
Yet another baby visitor... SIL.  We went to the winery/distillery and they did a tasting then we got lunch from them. With a bottle of wine, it was $60 for the 3 of us, so not bad.

Yearly total:
DH: 5.5
Me: 2.5
For others: 5

iowajes

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #95 on: May 08, 2017, 08:12:37 AM »
Well we went out again with SIL. (But we didn't treat this time)..but today we are meeting up at DH's work and packing our lunch.

So...
DH:6.5
Me: 3.5
For others: 5

marble_faun

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #96 on: May 09, 2017, 08:37:36 PM »
Well, I finally did it. Quit Blue Apron!

I grew up in a family that ate food from cans, freezer packages, and fast food joints, and I never quite grew out of that. My idea of "cooking" was boiling water for pasta.

Blue Apron really helped me. I began to understand how food worked. How to chop vegetables quickly. How a slab of meat might respond to different kinds of heat and spices.

But after two years of BA meal kits, I felt I had learned all I could from the service. Often I disregarded their recipes and did whatever I wanted with the ingredients they sent.  It had become a crutch, and I wanted more control over my own meals. The system started to seem tiresome.

So I canceled it and replaced it with something much cheaper: a local service that makes monthly deliveries of grass-fed meat raised by farmers in our region.  Two years ago, I wouldn't have known what to do with this stuff... but now I'm dishing up fabulous steaks and chili, supplementing the meat with whatever veggies I want from the grocery store.

It costs about $80/month, whereas Blue Apron cost [ugh] $240/month. And it's way better. A definite win!

By the way, since I first started posting here, my biggest Useless Expense has switched from restaurants to Lyft. Thankfully, it's a much lower useless expense!
"Time flies pursue it Man. For why? thy days are but a Span."

MissPiggy

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #97 on: June 03, 2017, 09:24:40 PM »
I'm in. I spent over $4,000 in 2016 on coffee in the mornings, lunch out at work every day and dinner out with family 4-5 times a week.
Since finding this site and committing, I've spent a grand total of $24. That was going to breakfast with my 3 and 6 year old daughters. Been taking leftovers to work for lunch, drinking coffee from work or home, and eating meals my wife cooks when I get home. It hasn't even been much of an adjustment and it's nice to see my paycheck still in my checking account two days before payday.

Having my whole paycheque still in my bank account 2 days before the next payday is a dream and a goal.

Amazing effort sixkids.
xx Miss Piggy

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The Earnest Addiction - A Millennial's Journey to FIRE
https://theearnestaddiction.wordpress.com/

1967mama

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #98 on: June 04, 2017, 01:11:27 AM »
Well, I finally did it. Quit Blue Apron!

I grew up in a family that ate food from cans, freezer packages, and fast food joints, and I never quite grew out of that. My idea of "cooking" was boiling water for pasta.

Blue Apron really helped me. I began to understand how food worked. How to chop vegetables quickly. How a slab of meat might respond to different kinds of heat and spices.

But after two years of BA meal kits, I felt I had learned all I could from the service. Often I disregarded their recipes and did whatever I wanted with the ingredients they sent.  It had become a crutch, and I wanted more control over my own meals. The system started to seem tiresome.

So I canceled it and replaced it with something much cheaper: a local service that makes monthly deliveries of grass-fed meat raised by farmers in our region.  Two years ago, I wouldn't have known what to do with this stuff... but now I'm dishing up fabulous steaks and chili, supplementing the meat with whatever veggies I want from the grocery store.

It costs about $80/month, whereas Blue Apron cost [ugh] $240/month. And it's way better. A definite win!

By the way, since I first started posting here, my biggest Useless Expense has switched from restaurants to Lyft. Thankfully, it's a much lower useless expense!

This is awesome!

Verdandi

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Re: Stop Eating at $&%@#$! Restaurants, THE RETURN: 2017
« Reply #99 on: June 04, 2017, 03:54:54 AM »
I'm in, too. I do eat at restaurants, but I make it a point only to do it on special occasions, and I only go to restaurants that serve high quality, amazing food. For example, we went to a lovely family-run French restaurant for our engagement dinner with our parents and siblings, and it was wonderful. Everyone will remember the good time and amazing food we had there, and I could enjoy the occasion, instead of stressing about it.
For our everyday lifes, we just don't go. We have practised cooking so much that our food is better than most restaurants most of the time. For example, I love pasta with a salmon and pea sauce. In average Italian restaurants, that means a miniscule portion of salmon and a sauce with lots and lots of fat cream. At home, I can have lots of fresh salmon and prepare the sauce with low fat cream cheese, and sometimes even make the pasta. It's cheaper and so much more delicious.
What helps for long work days is a stack of freezer food (homemade freezer burritos ftw!), having snack options, a delicious and healthy meal plan and shopping once a week. Dinner today is chicken tikka, tomorrow we have a potluck barbecue with friends :-)