Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Day 35, Grocery Bill (93...Free!)

In an effort to eliminate unnecessary spending, we started recording all our expenditures last month. I've always thought that our food bill was low, but I wasn't sure exactly what it was. Here it can decide if it's low. :)

Groceries**, Oct. 2008
(currently feeding family of 5 at home, including one who is gf/cf)
**includes food only--no household supplies

Meat (2008-09 year)
I'm a little unsure as to how to account for this except to take the total and divide it by 12 months. We buy locally grown, primarily grass fed/free range meat and freeze it. So far this year we've purchased chicken and beef that should last 12 months (or more.) We have a down payment on half a pig that is to be butchered in December, but I don't have totals for that yet.

Chicken (20 birds, 100 lbs)


225 + 290 = 515 / 12 = $43/month (might be less if meat lasts more than 12 months--the beef certainly may)

So, with the meat addition, our Oct food bill was $366. Or just under $12/day for our family to eat. Not bad.

I tracked "Eating Out" separately. Last month we spent $76 on eating out. This includes pizzas and Chinese food we brought in, and all other restaurant meals. Obviously there weren't many. :) I'm pleased with this number and it's already made a difference in our expenditures this month. On Sunday, family members expressed interest in going out for a sit-down meal. The group included our family plus my parents. I conservatively estimated our cost at more than $50 for the group. When I mentioned that this was 2/3rds of the total "eating out" budget from last month, we agreed to stay home.

I'm very curious to see if the food budget holds steady this month. I would anticipate it being slightly higher during the holidays, but we'll see... We're certainly beating the recent KFC challenge (see the commercial?) to spend $10 or less on a family of 4 for dinner...I thought that smelled a little fishy. Chickeny?


bodegalee said...

great post. I'm gonna track starting next month, but maybe hard with the holiday. Curious what your budget would be for everything: paper products, cleaning products, animal food (if you have pets)? Just trying to compare!

Also and dont in anyway mean to cause worry, and love the fact that the children are encouraged to drink water, we're pretty sure that our dd's high lead level came from a school she attended with very old pipes... Not to cause any worry here and suspect this is very rare (we tested our home water and our home was built in the 70's and all was fine). I only mention in case they attend an older school... just something to keep in mind. We use Siggs and they go back and forth daily (often with just water). Love your blog.... will have to look into buying meat in bulk (wonder what the overall savings is per year? suspect a ton!)...

richmomma said...

If you're worried about lead levels at school, you can always send water from home in a reusable metal water container.

We don't buy hardly any paper products (except tp!), and the cleaning products are few and far between (Costco). I'm sure the animal food is a factor (1 dog, 3 cats, chickens), but I don't know what it is.

Anonymous said...

Ya gotta love this Grist blog entry on beating KFC's "family meal" challenge -- creating a healthier, homemade version of the chicken dinner for four for (gasp) even less than $10.

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