Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Menu Plan

I made quick menu plan for the week,

Monday - coconut curry (crockpot) & rice
Tuesday - hamburgers
Wednesday - pot roast
Thursday - French toast
Friday - potluck: chips & macaroni salad
Saturday - popcorn & smoothies
Sunday - chicken curry (different curry than Monday)

Monday - pbj
Tuesday - corndogs
Wednesday - taco salad
Thursday - mac'n'cheese
Friday - ramen & pbj (other soup for DD2)
Saturday - chicken/millet sautee
Sunday - crockpot stew

Sunday, March 19, 2017

2017 Groceries Week 11 - $272.01

Another big week, but I feel so much better about having my fridge stocked!

Monday I went to Fred Meyer late at night.  We needed milk, cheese, and I wanted some hamburger patties to use up leftover hamburger buns.  Cereal was on sale 3/$5 for I picked up 3 boxes that didn't ring up correctly and I'm only now noticing - RATS. I got 2 coffee creamers for $1.99 each, chicken nuggets for $4.99, and a package of cheap hot dogs for $1.49.  I hate buying cheap hot dogs, but DH asked for them.  I bought regular corn dogs for quick, easy lunches because they were on sale.  I bought a couple bags of chips for kid treats with a store coupon making them $1.51 each, a bag of tortilla chips for $0.60 after coupon, shredded cheese for $2.68/pound after a coupon, and organic yogurt for $2.79 for a big tub.  On clearance I found a loaf of organic bread for $1.79 and lunchmeat ham for $2.99.  Milk was on sale so I got two gallons & those hamburger patties were just $5.49.  I also bought some brick cheese. $3.00/lb for Kroger and a no-dye cheddar loaf from Darigold was $5.79.  I spent $69.05 altogether.

I knew I needed Daiya cheese, but it was $4.99 at Fred Meyer.  So I got online Wednesday morning and found it for $3.89 on Amazon Now.  So I placed an order, also buying organic spinach for $3.99 for a dinner I made this week and syrup so I could use up some pancake mix on a kid lunch.  I spent $30.31 on this delivery.

Friday night, DH and I had a date night.  We saw an early movie, ate pizza together at Costco and shopped.  I bought 2 cases of organic coconut milk since it was on sale, feta cheese, Annie's snacks that on sale worked out to $0.25 each snack (my price point), organic garlic cloves, organic frozen corn, organic syrup, organic baby carrots, organic salad mix, organic sausages (also on sale so $3.99 per pack in stead of $4.99) for the kids' lunches, and organic chicken thighs (the small package possible), and conventional brick cheddar for just $4.99, feta (again, the smallest package possible), tortillas, shredded cheese for $2.59/lb, curry sauce I love, bananas, & oranges.  I spent a big $159.59.  And I reassured my husband that even buying a lot of organic food, I spend less than most folks buying conventional groceries.  I think.

I had a date with DD1 this afternoon and we ended up at the Dollar Store.  I bought some ramen & cup noodles.  Then we went to Haggen since we were in the neighborhood and I got organic romaine heads for $2.79 each bag of 3 and some no-dye Darigold cheddar for $5.49.  Between the two stores I spent $13.07.

Week 11 Total:$272.01
YTD 2017: $1,251.06
Weekly Average: $113.73

Monday, March 13, 2017

2017 Groceries Week 10 - $95.40

A pretty average week for Week 10.

My first shopping trip was QFC on Monday.  I found myself in Bellevue with an hour to kill so I stopped at the closest grocery store for tortilla chips, cereal, and any other bargains I could find.  I scored with clearance Tony Roma's pulled pork for $2.99 in the one pound package.  I bought 5 packages and was able to use them for our potluck dinner Friday night.  I added 2 cans of shredded chicken that were in my pantry to add bulk (thanks to my friend & mom of 7, Stephanie, who suggested it!).  I also found some clearance baby snacks for $0.29/ea, clearance hummus for $2.29, and I picked up 3 organic zucchini and an organic cucumber.  Cereal was on sale for $2.00 and I got a free half-gallon of organic milk for buying 4 boxes.  I had a $1.00/3 MC, too, for the cereal.  A sweet friend also gave me some gf tortillas & gf pizza crust Monday so I added them to the picture.  I spent $32.66 on food at QFC.

Next was a Friday trip to Fred Meyer for hamburger buns I needed for the pulled pork potluck that night and brown sugar that the kids kept begging for since their morning oatmeal wasn't the same with honey or white sugar.  DD2 asked me to buy apple juice for her sleepover that night.  I also found baby food on clearance for $0.79/2-pack and chunk pineapple for $0.69/can.  I spent $12.68.

I was also at QFC Friday with DD2 after our weekly Bible study.  I bought organic 1% milk on clearance for $3.29 and a regular price ($5.99) organic whole milk.  I found 2 cake mixes on clearance for $0.79 each, clean ravioli on clearance for $2.49 each, organic chicken thighs on clearance for $3.37/lb, a clearance lemon pound cake for $2.99 for a playdate, and some nice candy on clearance, too.  I'm saving that candy for gifts so I'm not including it in the grocery budget.  I bought organic bell peppers for $1.00 each, bananas, an organic cucumber, and regular grapes for $1.78/lb.  I spent $33.54 on groceries.

Saturday I was back at Fred Meyer for eggs and a lemon so I could make food for a brunch in Sunday school the next day.  I also bought a gf/df pizza because DH and I were going out that night and pizza would be an easy dinner for the sitter.  I bought asparagus, roma tomatoes, and organic apples.  I spent $16.52 on food.

Total for Week 10: $95.40
YTD 2017 Total: $979.04
Weekly Average: $97.90


p.s. I know I haven't been buying much fruit.  My kids are still plowing through several quarts of canned applesauce and 1 to 2 quarts of canned peaches each week.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

2017 Groceries Week 9 - $110.78

This week was pretty light for shopping, but I remembered some candy I bought on Amazon last month so I added it in.

We flew home Wednesday & I stopped at the Eagle discount store near my Aunt's again.  I spent $5.01 on 6 cup-o-noodles & 3 boxes of organic mac'n'cheese.

I went to QFC once home for a few 'easy' cook items for DH since I was leaving for a women's retreat for the weekend.  I bought regular corndogs, gf corndogs, 2 bags of chips for $1.99 each, bananas, apples & oranges on clearance, 2 gallons of whole milk, a gf/df pizza (not pictured), and found veggie sticks and organic chicken breast on clearance.  I spent $50.48.

Back in February I bought organic candy for DD2.  We had a rough time after the artificial colors in the Valentine candy so I hunted down some reasonable prices.  I bought this big bag for $13.99.  It had 85ish pieces so I figured at about $0.17 per piece of candy I'd go ahead and get it.

I also bought these which are like Starburst and sooo delicious.  I bought 3 bags at $3.49 each and it also worked out to about $0.17 per piece of candy.

These suckers were a good deal, too, at $7.38.  They worked out to about $0.19 each.

The best deal were these hard candies.  They were a variety pack of 12 different kinds and each pack had at least 15 pieces so they were well under $0.10 per candy.  They were $23.45.

Week 9 Total: $110.78
YTD 2017 Total: $883.64
Weekly Average: $98.18


Monday, February 27, 2017

2017 Groceries Week 8 - $94.58

There wasn't too much shopping this week since we were mostly out of town.

Monday I went to QFC to hit up their sale on creamer.  DH was nearly out of the stuff and I haven't yet found time to try that clean recipe I found.  I spent $1.99 on each bottle of creamer, a bag of Cheetos (not pictured), and a box of Cheerios.  On clearance, I found a pound of lunch ham for $2.39, 2 boxes of organic shells'n'cheese for $1.29 each, and the big score of nitrate-free bacon in 20 oz packages for $2.99.  These are normally up to $10.00 per package so I was happy to find them and bought 7 packages!  I also had 2-$1.00 off coupons for buying 'Simple Truth' meat,  a $0.55 coupon for lunchmeat, and a coffemate coupon, too.  I spent $42.08 this shopping trip.

I was at my aunt's outside Portland for a couple of days and one of my favorite places to visit there is the Eagle Store that gets Costco returns & mark-downs.  I found some great organic candy for $9.19, some 5 ingredient chocolate sauce for $4.29, and organic raisins for $4.49.  I felt pretty good about all of these items.

While we were out of town my mother-in-law was kindly prepared with gluten-free cereal for DD2 and had lots of milk & goodies on hand for the kids.  DH went to the store for a few more items and picked up 2 bags of corn chips, GF pasta, GF oreos, GF bread, DF cheese, a pound of ground turkey and another gallon of milk.  He spent $30.04.  I tried to take a picture but my battery died and I didn't want to leave the groceries out while the battery charged.

Week 8 Total: $94.58
YTD 2017 Total: $772.86
2017 Weekly Average: $96.61


Monday, February 20, 2017

2017 Groceries Week 7 - $295.88

Wow, I spent a lot this week.

I placed an Amazon now order on Tuesday because I was desperate for a new coffee bean grinder.  My husband loves the Ben Franklin quote, "Necessity makes the worst bargain." and it was true in this case.  I ended up paying about $17 for one to be quickly delivered instead of what would have much less expensive elsewhere.  The rest of the Amazon order included: GF pretzel, chips, bananas, regular and GF graham crackers, organic baby bars, brown sugar and marshmallows.  The food was $21.93.

Thursday, I raced around Costco with all 5 kids.  We were in and out in 18 minutes.  We bought tortilla chips, oatmeal, coconut milk, organic chicken thighs, organic eggs, rice crackers, cheese, and baking powder.  I spent $87.98.

I went to QFC with the girls Friday to pick up a GF/DF pizza.  They were going to a party with pizza and we intended to stop quickly then found all sorts of deals.  In addition to the pizza we bought this nitrate free sausage for $0.99/lb, some lunchmeat, and prepackaged fruit I sent to the party.  I spent $28.27.

I also made to Champion Foods - finally! I bought the organic ketchup I've been wanting and celery salt.  I found organic salsa, several bottles of organic salad dressing (including GF/DF French & Thousand Island), and DD2's favorite granola bars.  I also got an organic brownie mix and some gf/df apple muffins mixes.  The big find was GF rolled oats.  They had just received a shipment, but they didn't have the usual size I like to buy - the 25#, so I told him I'd take the 50# bag.  And I got it for a screaming deal (IMHO), of just $53.00 which works out to $1.06/lb.  I've been paying $3.00/lb or more for GF oats recently so I'm pretty happy about the price even if I'll have my storage buckets full of oats and probably one or two buckets occupied until next fall.  I spent a whopping $108.50.

Finally, I went to Fred Meyer on Sunday night to pick up carrots, refried beans, yogurt, & sour cream.  I ended up getting a pile of stuff.  Organic potatoes were on sale for $1.99 & i found clearance pears.  Organic bell peppers were $0.99 each as were cans of soup.  They're good for a quick lunch for DH. Organic diced tomatoes were $1.00, and I found good hot dogs on clearance so I also bought hot dog buns.  I bought frozen corn, oranges, a loaf of bread, sour cream, guacamole, pepperoni, fries, & cucumbers, too.  Phew! I spent $49.20.

Week 7 Total: $295.88
YTD 2017 Total: $678.28
Weekly Average: $96.90


Saturday, February 18, 2017

Pantry Challenge 2017 Wrap-up

I could have kept going with the Pantry Challenge, but for the sake of my sanity I've called it for this year.

Good stuff:

  • We used up a bit of 'quick oats' that have been hanging around for several years
  • I researched millet & learned how to cook it
  • I learned that there are some reasonable prices to be found with Amazon delivery
  • I found & used several items in the pantry that I'd forgotten about including chicken stock, pickles, and frosting.
  • We rediscovered pasta & red sauce. Cheap!
  • My kids love pancakes.  Cheap!
  • We used several gallon bags of freezer fruit.
  • My kids like blueberry muffins.
  • There are no longer Costco packs of food on the floor of my pantry - everything fits on the shelves.  
  • There isn't much food "hiding" behind other things anymore.
Not so successful: 
  • I have a lot of gluten-free pie crust mix and I didn't use ANY.
  • I have a lot of rice cakes and we barely dented them.
  • I still have ridiculous amounts of freezer fruit.
  • I was being so careful with the budget that my kids were missing milk and I didn't buy much in the way of fresh produce.  

Sunday, February 12, 2017

2017 Groceries Week 6 - $185.46

Yeesh!  I had shopped AND had groceries delivered twice this week.

Monday I went to QFC for hot dog buns, oatmeal, & taco stuff.  I was pleased to find a bag of clearance organic apples & a bag of bell peppers.  I also got fresh mozzarella which is a mama treat.  I bought bananas, tortillas, guacamole, salsa, tortilla chips, & whipping cream.  I spent $12.41.  Now that I'm looking at the receipt it looks like I didn't get charged for the oatmeal, whipping cream, hot dog buns, or mozzarella!  How did that happen?!? I went through the check stand!

I went to Haggen Tuesday for milk.  I also bought organic russet potatoes for $0.89/lb and organic roma tomatoes for $0.89/lb.  My DF kiddo was with me and asked for sour cream substitute so we got that, too.  I paid $15.04 on this shopping trip.

I ordered Amazon Prime Now on Wednesday.  I spent $24.52 on: gallon of whole milk, 2 packages of shredded Daiya cheese, a box of triscuits, 2 tubs of Earth Balance, bananas & a bottle of organic ketchup.  No Photo.

I also tried out Amazon Pantry this week.  It was delivered on Friday.  I liked that I could use coupons and that the prices were good.  For example, I paid $7.49 recently for Bob's Red Mill GF rolled oats, but the AP price was $5.99.  The organic ketchup was $2.58, Nature Valley granola bars were $4.50, the Quaker granola bar value packs were $3.74 each.  These were all $32.53.

Friday I went to the store for the items needed for our Bible study potluck that night.  I bought chips, green onions, & sour cream for that.  I also found nitrate-free bacon on clearance so I bought 3 packages.  I also bought 3 clearance organic apples for $1.00, clearance organic milk for $3.29, clearance organic cottage cheese for $1.79, and clearance protein wrap for $0.79 with a $0.50 peelie making it just $0.29.  I also picked up saltines & chicken breast which were on sale.  I spent $27.16.

I went to Fred Meyer Saturday because we needed creamer, brown sugar, and marshmallows.  I remembered to buy the creamer and found a whole bunch of other stuff.  My best find were double packs of pizzas for $3.59 each.  I bought 7 packs.  I also bought chicken nuggets, chocolate milk, & cheap tortillas.  I found udi's muffins on clearance (yay!), more nitrate-free bacon, english muffins, 3 organic apples, lunchmeat & 2 organic whole chickens - all on clearance.  I also got a backup sour supreme.  I spent a whopping $73.80.
Total for Week 6: $185.46
2017  YTD Total: $382.40
Weekly Average: $63.73