Thursday, January 5, 2012

Holiday Wrap-Up

As the holidays draw to an end people everywhere start making and breaking their new year's resolutions, our family gets down to business and starts making good on our start of the year commitments.
With our little family growing this christmas by one puppy, our move to Kansas quickly approaching and a baby due in June, we decided it was time to buckle down and create a solid financial plan in the form of a monthly budget.
Both Alex and I aren't really the most budget savvy people, so I started with what I know, food. I really enjoy grocery shopping and cooking but since I've gotten pregnant I had really fallen down on my cooking duties. In my first trimester and beginning of my second food just really grossed me out. I was really turned off to cooking and looking at raw meat just gave me the heebie-jeebies. Due to my finnicky stomach we ate out ALOT and I rarely cooked anything. Now that I'm about 16 weeks and my sick feeling have subsided I'm back to cooking delicious meals for my hubby.
This week was our trial week of our food budget system and it only took me a couple of steps...
1. Create a list of all snack, breakfast and lunch supplies (we found that our list will last about two weeks-ish). This is our concrete list that really won't change much, I made an excel doc with the list and printed it out, when our two weeks our up, I'll mark the things we're out of and go get more.
2. Make a weekly menu. Make a solid menu for the dinners of one week and stick to it.
3. Make a list of all supplies needed to make the dinners, that you don't already have.
4. Shop at the cheapest place first. Grocery shopping for me took three different trips so that I could keep track of the prices and wouldn't need to decipher receipts, but now that I have a more concrete weekly list I can narrow the trips down into just two.
Grocery trip 1. Was strictly a bi-weekly lunch/breakfast/snack trip (this is a Walmart trip for us, their prices are the cheapest for the things that we're buying for these meals) and totaled to $80.00.
Grocery trip 2. Was also made at Walmart, during this trip I went down my list of dinner supplies and bought everything possible there and that was totaled to $64.00
Grocery trip 3. For this trip I shopped at Martins. I choose to buy my meat/fish and specialty items at Martins. The quality of meat and fish is better there than anywhere else that I've seen in our area. This trip totaled $49.00.

Let's break it down...
(Bi-weekly list: 80.00)
For one week: 40.00
Menu list 1: 64.00
Menu list 2: 49.00
We went ahead and bumped that to
So we spend around $155.00 a week for groceries, we will budget about $160.00 to give us some wiggle room.
This budget was strictly food, we are going to follow it up by subtracting all of our monthly bills from our monthly income, and spreading the rest between, savings, baby, home, clothing, entertainment etc.
Hope you enjoy, will keep you posted on our progress.

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