We've been looking over the budget for 2008 and things are looking good from here. Not much wiggle room, but we are going to be fine. Of course there is always room from improvement and places where there needs to be a little nip and tuck. There is the option of one or both of us working more hours, which is always helpful when finances are tight. We're not afraid of a little work. But, I'd much rather us learn to live under our means and use extra to pay down debt or save for some fun summer trips. And who doesn't feel a lot more comfortable with a little cushion, right?
So I have challenged myself to get our grocery/household budget down to $400 a month for this year. I know that sounds ridiculous for a family of nine, but with prayer, some resourcefulness and planning, I am hopeful. I'm going to be using only cash for these transactions so that I will have a handle on what's available and will be soliciting the help of my older girls with the coupons and time in kitchen cooking from scratch. I'll be posting my final totals at the beginning of each month and keep you appraised of some highlights and recipes along the way.
I hope that this exercise will serve to keep me accountable and that it will also encourage you as you manage your homes and budgets.
So, here goes. I did my shopping for this week and here are the great deals I found:
At CVS I was able to purchase diapers (4 packs) and soda for the month, vitamins, some much needed Oil of Olay products for me and the girls, dark chocolates and a planning calendar. There are also 3 glucose monitors which produced $30 in Extra Care Bucks that I will donating to a local clinic. This took four separate transactions in which I used $90 in coupons and ECB.
Spent $36.25 out of pocket and have $25.00 Extra Care Bucks for milk this month.
At Super Target they have a lot of produce marked down. For example, 5lb of potatoes were 2/$3 and I used 2 $1 off coupons. Those will go a long way. Campbell's soup was also marked down and with a coupon was $.35 a can. I spent $19.57 there.
It's not rocket science. I just went to Money Saving Mom and Thrifty Florida Mama and followed their lead.