Author Topic: Reducing grocery budget  (Read 2474 times)

mporter012

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Reducing grocery budget
« on: January 18, 2019, 02:22:49 PM »
Through a combination of hustles and angles, I manage to bring in around $800-1000 a week. I have my grocery budget set at $400/month and restaurant budget set at $100/month. I hunt and fish, sometimes have a garden, and sometimes bake my own bread. I know I could lower my food budget, and curious if anyone has really taken this on in any detail? I know MMM had a thing about groceries awhile back, and he mentioned Costco as an option for saving. It just seems that you go to the grocery store, and with a 1/4 filled cart, you're up to $100. The other day I need olives, parmesan cheese, and lima beans, and it was $20!!!

Ideas?

Michael in ABQ

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2019, 02:45:55 PM »
Some easy (in theory) ways to reduce your grocery budget are:

Buy in bulk
Buy generic/store brands
Buy less meat
Buy raw ingredients/staple items instead of prepared foods in a box or bag
Plan your shopping ahead of time to reduce impulse buys
Use coupons (but only on items you were planning to buy anyways)

Some of these are a bit harder in practice. I like meat, I plan to eat meat at just about every meal, and I'm fully aware that costs more than non-meat based protein.

Our grocery budget is up to $1,400 per month, though that's a family of 8 and includes diapers, paper products, toiletries, etc. (doesn't include restaurants which is very minimal). I'd love to get it down because right now that's our single biggest line item. Unfortunately kids want to eat every single day. That's even with being able to shop at the commissary on base which is typically about 25% cheaper than someplace like Walmart, and far cheaper than Smith's, Albertson's, or other grocery stores. Costco is nice but they generally carry more expensive types of products so even though it's cheaper than the equivalent at a normal grocery store, if you're buying a 25lb of organic brown rice it's probably not going to be cheaper than a 3lb bag of non-organic brown rice at Walmart.

oldtoyota

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2019, 02:47:20 PM »
I couldn't do it. If others can, I salute them.

I decided to focus on other ways to cut back and, instead, put time and money into good food that sustains my good health. Others may have a different view, and that's a-okay.

Good luck.


wenchsenior

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2019, 03:07:05 PM »
There are a bunch of threads on this forum about this topic (if you just google 'mr. money mustache grocery', you can probably find some. 

Personally, I suspect the extremely low grocery budgets are heavily reliant on carbs as filler, and I have to limit my carbs.  But  I tackled my grocery bill a few years ago and managed to reduce it by about 50$ per month (from about 500-550$ for 2 adults).  Prior to this, I had honestly never glanced at a sale in a grocery store during my entire life b/c I am a very habitual eater and buyer. I don't think I even registered those weekly newspaper flyers.  Once I started paying attention to prices around my city, it became apparent that Target was my best bet for most things and that buying meat on sale was the other big saver.  For a while I also reduced low-hanging fruit: purchase of expensive dark chocolate and sockeye salmon, which combined accounted for about 60$ per month.  I also note that my husband's fresh fruit obsession drives up our budget, as does his love of cheese (though we've cut that way down b/c I don't care about it, and he is supposed to avoid full fat dairy).

But in the end, the only thing that stuck was buying meat on sale.  I really need to go to Target occasionally, but I'm just really bad about doing it.  The other problem is that the store that has great meat sales is a whole-foods type store, and I'm seemingly incapable of JUST buying the meat when I go in there, so I think it ends up being a wash a lot of the time.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2019, 03:09:17 PM by wenchsenior »

SweatingInAZ

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2019, 03:11:28 PM »
Planning your meals and buying what is on sale makes a huge difference!

I look at the front page of grocery ads and then pick out what I want to make that week.
Ethnic grocery stores are great for vegetables, rice and lentils. It's much more fun to have a couple of different varieties of rice and a more appetizing color of lentils.

Green beans happen to be on sale this week at Sprouts, so it looks like I'm cooking up green beans for a couple of meals!

Costco is tough.
The name brand stuff comes in giant packages, and the pricing is lower than MSRP at a grocery store.
The store-brand (Kirkland) stuff is of high quality, and cheaper than name brand anywhere, but usually more expensive than the walmart/Kroger branded groceries.

If you are not able to shop sales at a regular store, Costco is a fair price. Sales at regular grocery stores are always cheaper when I compare.

OtherJen

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2019, 05:45:03 PM »
Husband and I have a low cost of living and enjoy cooking and eating, so I havenít been too worried about getting the food costs down. But I think weíre at about $300/month on food and beer/wine for the two of us, which is a $50 to $100 reduction from the pre-MMM era. I attribute this change to two things: 1) doing as much of the grocery shopping at Aldi and the local cheap produce market as possible and 2) visiting other stores (e.g., Kroger, Costco, Meijer) for specific sale items or items that Aldi cannot beat on price or doesnít carry.

It also helps to keep a price book or at least a baseline price list. For example, I can regularly get grass-fed ground beef at Costco for $5/lb. So when Aldi ran a $4.49/lb sale earlier this month, I stocked up. Similarly, Costco regularly has the best price on sharp cheddar at $2.50/lb. So when Kroger recently ran a $2/lb sale on 2/lb store-brand cheese blocks, I bought 3.

Shopping seasonally also helps. I can get a 4-lb bag of oranges at Aldi for $2.19 right now, and a 3-lb bag of local apples at Meijer in September for $1.99. Asparagus will be $0.99/bunch in April/May, zucchini will be $0.99/lb in August, and green cabbage and yams will be $0.39/lb in November.

oldtoyota

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2019, 05:59:09 PM »
There are a bunch of threads on this forum about this topic (if you just google 'mr. money mustache grocery', you can probably find some. 

Personally, I suspect the extremely low grocery budgets are heavily reliant on carbs as filler, and I have to limit my carbs...

That was my take, too. I could do not do the lentils (high carbs) and lots of rice and beans that others did to radically reduce their grocery bill. Certain ways of eating make me feel bad, so I do what I have to do. We do enjoy cooking, too, so I view it as entertainment, too. =-)

AnnaGrowsAMustache

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2019, 06:42:30 PM »
Think unit price, and buy more of items you use regularly when the price is low. I like a coffee that retails full price for $10. The lowest it gets down to is $6.90, so when that happens, I buy 10 packets. Don't buy when you need, and when you're forced to accept the full price. Buy when the price is right.

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2019, 08:45:04 PM »
I don't eat a lot of the cheaper meals that are mentioned in the frugal grocery threads, like pasta, beans, rice etc...mostly because my body just feels like crap when I eat that way. I eat mostly veggies, fruits, meat and randoms like almond milk, occasional gf pizza, etc and I manage to keep my yearly average under $300 a month. I eat a lot of the same stuff all the time, and I also am ok with running out of things. Right now I am out of apples, and cucumbers, but the price isn't great this week so I'm just doing without until it's lower. My salads are a little boring this week, but I'm not starving and have plenty of good food. I improvise a lot, and am ok eating eggs for dinner if that's what I have in the fridge. I buy about 50/50 organic/conventional, and also try to stock up on meat for the freezer whenever possible...I do Costco about 1x every 2-3 months and stock up on meat, canned coconut milk, almond milk, butter, frozen veg, etc. That helps keep the freezer full and allows for under $200 grocery months in between.

seemsright

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2019, 09:23:15 PM »
I find using what you have on hand before you go to the store is helping to bring down our bill. Our bill is still high we were near $650 avg per month last year. There is 3 of us and our 8 year old is eating more than both of us combined.

I am finding where we live food prices are going up. I am going out of my way to try to find more affordable stores. I find the local restaurant supply is cheaper than costco. I love rice and potatoes. And I bought 50# of each the other day. One of my fav meals is eggs and rice with some veggie and sesame oil I also like to slice some potatoes and season them up and throw them on the grill.

We do eat a lot of meat due to my blood sugar issues. So a very balance meal plan is what we have to follow.  So we have our grilled potatoes with some grilled chicken and a salad. I did the eat like a college kid...back in college I have no desire to do that again. If I have to pay for my food I am going to eat damn well. We eat everything I buy. But I am not going to go without just to save a few $$.

Megs193

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #10 on: January 20, 2019, 08:15:44 PM »
We recently cut our grocery bill from $1200 a month to $750 a month for my family of 4. The number one thing I have changed is that I try to plan my meals based off what is on sale. I also buy whatever fruits and vegetables are on sale. We like most fruits and veggies and since these make up a large part of our budget this cuts down on costs. I also stock up on things that wonít go bad when they reach their lowest price. I know that the cheapest I can get apple juice for is .99 cents which happpens about every 2 months. My kids go through a bottle a week so I buy 8 bottles when it reaches that price.  One other thing I have been focusing on recently is food waste. If I see something is going bad I change my meal plan and we eat it or if itís somethign that can be frozen we freeze it.

mporter012

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #11 on: January 24, 2019, 12:27:02 PM »
Thanks for all the wonderful ideas! It seems like shopping sales, buying in bulk, and better planning are the best and consistent ideas here. Thanks!

Brother Esau

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #12 on: January 24, 2019, 02:09:26 PM »
Some of the grocery stores near us have occasional "buy 1 - get 2 free" deals. When they do, we stock up on stuff. We literally have over a year worth of toilet paper in the basement. Have also made out well on this with coffee, pasta sauce, soda, etc.

Bee21

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2019, 03:08:47 PM »
Our grocery costs tend to be on the higher end these days as my husband eats a lot of red meat, the kids munch their way through a mountain of fruit and veg (i live in Australia where fruit and veg is fantastic but super expensive).  This year I am aiming for 150 a week for a fam of 4. But I used to live on 150 a month when I was single and I ate well.

The best advice I can give you is to plan and cost your meals. Write down a list of your regular meals and price all the ingredients. You will see quickly where the leaks are. Cost not only the dinners, but the breakfast, lunches and most importantly, the snacks as well. In my experience, sometimes the snacks we are munching mindlessly on can be more expensive than dinner.

Use your leftovers. Plan meals which produce lots of leftovers. Eg a large 20$ roast pork and veg can easily be turned into 3 different dinners plus a couple of lunches, so it is more economical than the 16$ pork chops which produce no leftovers. A great cookbook which is based on the ' waste not' mentality is Tamar Adler's Everlasting meal. There is also a British cookbook which is worth checking out for the planning philosophy is The kitchen revolution. The later has weekly menus, most of them are based on a big meal, 2-3 are based on the leftovers the big meal produces, there are pantry suppers with whatever you cand find in the average storecupboar and a 2 for 1 meal (to be frozen for later) recipe for every week. The food is a bit too British but the concept is very practical and adaptable for every palate.

Buying in bulk or cooking in bulk might work for some people, it depends on your circumstances. I tend to cook a few things in bulk during the winter, but it's a lost case in the summer heat.

And of course, reduce your red meat consumption. Have a few vegetarian meals you enjoy in your meal rotation. Even the most rabid meat eater can suffer through a few vegetarian dishes if they are made well. I once rocked up to a curry potluck banquet with a potato curry and a chickpea curry and they were the first to go.


momcpa

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2019, 08:18:19 PM »
And watch the pricing!  Just today I was going to buy a couple of the individual pouches of tuna packed in water.  The individual pack was priced at $1 each.  The "economy" pack sitting next to it on the shelf had a special pricing of 4 pouches for $4.44 total.   In other words, for the convenience of 4 at a time, you would pay $.44 MORE !!!!!!!!   Watch the prices.  That alone can help your food budget.

HipGnosis

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #15 on: January 26, 2019, 11:29:12 AM »
Planning your meals and buying what is on sale makes a huge difference!
For me, planning contradicts buying what's on sale.   So I'm a sale shopper. 
I live alone, so buying in bulk doesn't work for me, but a year of tracking prices (in a spreadsheet, with a $/unit column) has shown me that buying in bigger sizes is almost always a better deal.   So when they go on sale, I stock up.

I go to Aldi about every 3 weeks.   Their family packs of chicken thighs and pork are staples of mine now.
And I keep room in my freezer for when they go on sale.

APowers

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #16 on: January 26, 2019, 12:34:51 PM »
Through a combination of hustles and angles, I manage to bring in around $800-1000 a week. I have my grocery budget set at $400/month and restaurant budget set at $100/month. I hunt and fish, sometimes have a garden, and sometimes bake my own bread. I know I could lower my food budget, and curious if anyone has really taken this on in any detail? I know MMM had a thing about groceries awhile back, and he mentioned Costco as an option for saving. It just seems that you go to the grocery store, and with a 1/4 filled cart, you're up to $100. The other day I need olives, parmesan cheese, and lima beans, and it was $20!!!

Ideas?

Ask, and ye shall receive.

Thanks for all the wonderful ideas! It seems like shopping sales, buying in bulk, and better planning are the best and consistent ideas here. Thanks!

Yup. Also, adjusting your meals to use what is inexpensive for you locally (which you'll find out by shopping the sales). Being content with basic, hearty meals, instead of using fancy or expensive ingredients. A good rule of thumb is <$1 per pound on average.

Severian

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #17 on: January 27, 2019, 06:12:55 PM »
Through a combination of hustles and angles, I manage to bring in around $800-1000 a week. I have my grocery budget set at $400/month and restaurant budget set at $100/month. I hunt and fish, sometimes have a garden, and sometimes bake my own bread. I know I could lower my food budget, and curious if anyone has really taken this on in any detail? I know MMM had a thing about groceries awhile back, and he mentioned Costco as an option for saving. It just seems that you go to the grocery store, and with a 1/4 filled cart, you're up to $100. The other day I need olives, parmesan cheese, and lima beans, and it was $20!!!

I think I'm pretty good at keeping food costs low. Actually, I lose money by doing so, because I could make a lot more money working than I save by being a frugal cook. But it's important to me to eat well and be able to live on as little as possible, so I practice being frugal by cooking frugally for myself.

The first thing I do is bake bread two or three times a week. I have a nice stand mixer, but I don't use it for this. I use the no-knead dutch oven method and order flour and yeast in bulk. Cost per loaf is <40 cents and it takes less time than you might think.

Past that- well, peasant food is known to be tasty, so I cook like a peasant whose food has not been discovered yet, and thus made expensive. If you like meat (and I do) pork shoulder goes on sale for two bucks a pound even in the expensive area I live in. I can make some fresh tortillas from almost free masa harina, some fragrant beans from cheap dried beans, and a delicious guisado of pork shoulder and eat food similar to food people pay a lot to eat on vacation, and even go on vacation for.

The key to keeping food costs low is to be able to cook for yourself, from scratch, I think.
 

Cgbg

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #18 on: January 27, 2019, 08:34:03 PM »
The most expensive food youíll buy is the food you throw out, so figuring out what to do with leftovers is a way to keep costs down.

JSMustachian

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2019, 12:55:06 PM »
Some tips I used to cut my grocery spending from the $400/$600 a month range down to $250 (Family of 2):

-Water only for drinks (filtered water from our fridge)
-Only buy fruits and vegetables that are less than $1 a pound or very close to that
-Only buy meat that is $2 a pound or less with the exception of ground meats
-Do not purchase any processed sugary snacks or anything with a lot of sugar in general
-If something is on sale buy it in bulk
-Eat less calories. Less calories equals less food bought. I do this during times on the year when my activity level is lower or I am trying to drop a few pounds.

I'm also a hunter and have 100-200 pounds of meat in the freezer I processed myself for less than $1 a pound.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2019, 12:57:25 PM by JSMustachian »

AnnaGrowsAMustache

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #20 on: January 28, 2019, 02:11:19 PM »

peasant food is known to be tasty

All the best dishes in the world are peasant food - simple, cheap, long slow cooking, one pot, tasty and nutritious meals for hardworking people. Think chili, bolognese, curry, hotpot, fish stew, cornish pasties. Every place in the world has a famous peasant dish.

Sugaree

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #21 on: January 29, 2019, 08:50:17 AM »
I spend ~$350 a month for two adults, a 5 year-old who never stops eating, a cat, and the biggest, dopiest Golden Retriever to ever have walked the Earth.  This does not include the ~$50 a month for my kid's school lunches, but does include the expensive ass single serve packages of olives that he insists on for snack time at school.  Some of the things I do:

Meal planning: This is absolutely the number one thing for me.  I have an app on my phone that lets me save and organize all my recipes and it generates a shopping list from the meals I choose.  Online grocery ordering/pickup has been a boon here because I can check my pantry and shop for the best price and fit and there's no chance of impulse purchases in the store.

Shopping sales/stocking up on basics:  I'm not blessed with an overabundance of options when it comes to grocery stores, but there are a handful of options.  I keep an eye on their sales, especially meat, and stock up when the prices drop below a certain point.  I do tend to stick to a limited selection of meat types though.  Chicken breasts, bottom round roast, boneless pork chops, etc.  There are cheaper cuts, especially of chicken (leg quarters are $.35/lb this week), so if I needed to cut down even more, I could.  It's also helpful to understand sales cycles.  Certain things go on sale, especially as loss leaders, at certain times of the year.  BBQ Sauce and Ketchup/Mustard at Memorial Day or 4th of July, sugar/flour/oil/etc just before Thanksgiving.  Other things go on sale roughly every three or four months.  If you can buy enough (check the expiration dates) to last until the next sale then you won't have to pay full price when you run out.  This is where couponing is really effective.  One thing that I don't currently do, but have done in the past is keep a price book.  Here, Wal-Mart is going to be cheaper 98% of the time for everything except loss leaders and the remaining 2% the difference is so minute that unless there's a LL that makes it worth it, I don't bother (for example, avocados are 30 cents cheaper at IGA than WM, but that would literally be the only thing in the store on my list that's cheaper.  It's also way out of my way to go to the IGA, so I don't know if saving $1.50 is worth it.)

Bigger isn't alway better:  Before you automatically grab the biggest box of something check the price per ounce/lb/etc.  It's not always the better price.

Check the clearance shelf/bump-and-dent section:  This takes some discipline to not buy stuff just because it's cheap, but if there's stuff that you buy on a regular basis at a good price stock up (again, check the expiration). 

Know when manager's specials happen:  At my store, meat gets marked down on Friday mornings, which is convenient because the Friday after payday is my regular off-day at work.  Keep in mind that these are on special because they are about to be out of date.  Use or freeze immediately.  And freeze in manageable portions.  I personally break most of my chicken and beef roast down into bite sized chunks, freeze on a sheet tray, and then pack in gallon freezer bags.  I can pull as much or as little out as I need when it's time to cook dinner (defrosts faster too). 

A little work goes a long way:  Things like dried beans are way, way cheaper than their canned counterparts.  If you have time on the weekend, cook 4 or 5 lbs of beans and freeze in individual portions.  I've frozen beans flat on a sheet before so that they can be stored in one big container and scooped out.  They ended up a bit dry, but if you're doing something like soup, it's fine.  An instant pot also apparently will cook dried beans fast.  Rice can be frozen as well.  Brown rice tends to do better than white rice.  We don't eat much in the way of carbs anymore, but I would cook large batches of rice in the crockpot on the weekends and freeze for the coming week.

Cut costs on non-food consumables/cleaners:  We use bar wipes and cloth napkins instead of paper towels.  We've drawn the line at TP, but we used cloth diapers for three years (non-mustachian confession:  I bought, off Craigslist, a 1.0 CU portable washing machine specifically for diaper laundry instead of just using the regular washing machine).  The countertop guy recommended dish soap and water to clean the granite, and it works just as well on the electric non-smooth-top stove.  The floor guy recommended a water/white vinegar cleaner for the floors instead of a specialized "floor cleaner."  We've made laundry detergent in the past, but found it rough on our clothes (when you wear the same 8 t-shirts and 4 pairs of jeans every day they get washed a lot).  I'd like to revisit that soon.  Cleaners and stuff like toothpaste or mouthwash are where you can really save doing the couponing thing as long as you aren't picky about brands.  Again, stock up when they go on sale.



There is a caveat here.  My spendy pants husband often goes out and buys junk food and snacks.  We have separate accounts, so I have no idea how much he spends on that crap in a month, and it's not a necessity, so I don't count it.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2019, 09:00:57 AM by Sugaree »

Linea_Norway

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #22 on: January 30, 2019, 02:16:42 AM »
This does not include the ~$50 a month for my kid's school lunches, but does include the expensive ass single serve packages of olives that he insists on for snack time at school.

We are still talking about your 5 year old kid, aren't we? They say that small children seldom spend the money in a family. It is the parents who buy it for them. Can't you just say no, or reduce it to once a week? He might not like it, but so what?

If your kid would have been older, you could probably have provided him with pocket money worth 5 x the price of the olive pack. Then I think he would quickly become motivated to use the money for other things.

Sugaree

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #23 on: January 30, 2019, 04:25:57 AM »
This does not include the ~$50 a month for my kid's school lunches, but does include the expensive ass single serve packages of olives that he insists on for snack time at school.

We are still talking about your 5 year old kid, aren't we? They say that small children seldom spend the money in a family. It is the parents who buy it for them. Can't you just say no, or reduce it to once a week? He might not like it, but so what?

If your kid would have been older, you could probably have provided him with pocket money worth 5 x the price of the olive pack. Then I think he would quickly become motivated to use the money for other things.

Yeah, this is the five year old.  I buy one 4-pack every two weeks.  It's just ridiculous that it costs the same thing for that as it does a big jar of regularly packed olives.  The rest of the week he gets like bananas or apples or individual bags of popcorn and other not-quite-so expensive stuff.  His teacher is weird about snacks.  I think maybe she's interpreted the school-wide rule about no homemade snacks at birthday parties (i.e. cupcakes from the bakery are fine, but cupcakes made in my kitchen aren't) to mean no homemade snacks at all and insists that any snacks in the classroom be packaged individually from the store.  I just don't feel like fighting that particular battle with her.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #24 on: January 30, 2019, 04:39:04 AM »
This does not include the ~$50 a month for my kid's school lunches, but does include the expensive ass single serve packages of olives that he insists on for snack time at school.

We are still talking about your 5 year old kid, aren't we? They say that small children seldom spend the money in a family. It is the parents who buy it for them. Can't you just say no, or reduce it to once a week? He might not like it, but so what?

If your kid would have been older, you could probably have provided him with pocket money worth 5 x the price of the olive pack. Then I think he would quickly become motivated to use the money for other things.

Yeah, this is the five year old.  I buy one 4-pack every two weeks.  It's just ridiculous that it costs the same thing for that as it does a big jar of regularly packed olives.  The rest of the week he gets like bananas or apples or individual bags of popcorn and other not-quite-so expensive stuff.  His teacher is weird about snacks.  I think maybe she's interpreted the school-wide rule about no homemade snacks at birthday parties (i.e. cupcakes from the bakery are fine, but cupcakes made in my kitchen aren't) to mean no homemade snacks at all and insists that any snacks in the classroom be packaged individually from the store.  I just don't feel like fighting that particular battle with her.

Stupid teacher...

I understand that it is not worth the battle: choose your battles for more important stuff.

Sugaree

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Re: Reducing grocery budget
« Reply #25 on: January 30, 2019, 04:49:07 AM »
This does not include the ~$50 a month for my kid's school lunches, but does include the expensive ass single serve packages of olives that he insists on for snack time at school.

We are still talking about your 5 year old kid, aren't we? They say that small children seldom spend the money in a family. It is the parents who buy it for them. Can't you just say no, or reduce it to once a week? He might not like it, but so what?

If your kid would have been older, you could probably have provided him with pocket money worth 5 x the price of the olive pack. Then I think he would quickly become motivated to use the money for other things.

Starting in the 7th grade, my mother would just hand me two dollars every day for lunch at school.  I never ate lunch.  I'd walk around with a stack of one dollar bills in my bag until mom realized what was going on and then she started just giving me $10 at the beginning of the week.  I imagine that he'll be the same way.  He already hoards his allowance.  But I suck at keeping cash around, so we'll have to figure out how old he'll have to be to get a debit card to go with his bank account.