Actually, it is more like a plan of action. And, it’s usually planned out weekly; mostly on payday when I see how much money I do not have. This is something I have been doing for several years now and has become somewhat of a game to me.
Well first let me preface this post by stating that I enjoy the grocery store probably more than anyone I know. Even though I know where every item is (even the ones I don’t buy) in my favorite store, I still push a grocery cart up and down every aisle to see what is new in grocery food. My only exception to that rule is probably the frozen isle because, I don’t buy a lot of frozen foods. In addition to knowing exactly where the food items I wish to buy are located. I also know the regular retail price of it (Disclaimer: this is only in my usual choice grocery store). And that’s where the fun part comes in…..
Every week after I decide how the money will be spent for life bills; I see how much money is left for food and other essential living items. From that left over money, I create a weekly menu that can feed my family for the next 7 days. Even though I get paid bi-weekly now, the weekly thing still works for me because I can only plan for food for the week. My taste buds and cravings cannot be planned out 2 weeks in advance. (REAL LIFE FOODIE HERE!!).. After planning the weekly menu, I make the grocery list based off the menu I have created. Everything on the list will be used to make meals and eat this week. Not next week or next month… Just this week. This is so you only spend what money you have for groceries. As you write your list, write down how much each item cost at regular price.. Add it all up. This is how much you will probably spend at the store unless something is on sale. Which is totally awesome when you can get food on sale!!! Once your grocery list is made, go to through your cabinets, pantry and, refrigerator and freezer to see what you already have on hand. (If you’re the only cook in your household you may already know what’s on hand and can skip the pantry check because, you already know what you have.) What can you cross off of your list? That’s money you don’t have to spend at the grocer. Yay! That’s money you can put in a piggy bank or buy yourself a small treat for staying with your list! Once you are all done shopping and in that check out line, pull those coupons out if you have them. You’re doing great! Watch the cashier ring up your items and see if the prices match your prices you have wrote down already. Does her grand total match your grand total.. Did you get away spending less than YOU have wrote down on you grocery list? If so, YOU WON THE GROCERY GAMES!!! 🙂
Yes, I get excited about things like this. It’s the little things that count. But winning at my grocery budget is totally a big thing with me… Mostly because I spend soooo much money on food and I have to reel myself in when it comes to groceries and/or going on a food adventure.
So, to recap:
- Decide how much $ you want to spend on groceries this week. Create your menu for the next 7 days.
- Draft a grocery list. Write down the regular retail price also.
- Check your cabinets, pantry, refrigerator and, freezer for items already on hand.
- Get shopping! If you have coupons use them!! Bonus points if your items are on sale!
- Lastly, go check out…. hopefully with good knowledge of food costs and your grocer you can spend as much cash as you have allotted or less. And, that’s how you win at the Grocery Games!!!
Hmmm, maybe I should’ve title today’s post: Grocery Games. LOL.