Hiking through a hail storm = zero progress for the week. Either because they are unexpected or because I’m on vacation anyway, I was knocked on my butt this entire week by a summer cold. I managed to sniffle my way through a few power yoga sessions, which are my go-to when I desperately want to avoid running. (note: this is pretty much all the time)
My major goal this week was to slash our weekly grocery budget. I have two major consumer weaknesses — food and REI — and both are equally dangerous. Groceries are around 15-25% more expensive than what we are used to in Phoenix, and I am not particularly frugal when it means compromising the purchase of high quality, healthy food. We allow ourselves one take-out order/week, which covers one dinner and one lunch. Other than that, we make all of our food at home. The last few weeks we did $125 worth of damage each week, and this week I managed to slash it down to $85. My ultimate goal is +/- $75.
I only did three things differently this week, and it worked out well!
1. Plan each dinner, include 2-3 with cheap ingredients. We have a chalkboard in a frame hanging above the fridge where we outline our meals for the week. The difference this week is that I spent some time looking for inexpensive vegetarian recipes and added them to the list.
2. Don’t buy anything over $6.99 The only thing that typically tips this budget is seafood, but if you buy the styrofoam-backed fresh stuff right by the counter and eat it at the beginning of the week, it’s significantly cheaper (shrimp in particular). I’ve also learned that 2/3 lb of any seafood is plenty for a dinner of two.
3. Build your menu based on sale items Safeway has a new shopping app which lets you upload coupons onto your loyalty card. Most of the discounts are for processed/packaged stuff I don’t buy, but we ended up with a lot of BOGO items that will last for next week as well.
There are tons more tips along with entrance into the endless (terrifying?) world of online couponing here.