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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Eat From the Pantry Challenge

If you haven't heard, Money Saving Mom and Life As Mom are challenging themselves and others to take the Eat From the Pantry Challenge. Our freezer is packed and our pantry is well stocked so my husband and I are ready and willing to take the challenge in order to save our grocery budget this month and put it towards other debts. (Yes... debts. We still have some of this terrible stuff that we are working hard to whittle away). We are taking the month long challenge and hoping to stretch it a little farther!

Once we do return to our regular shopping we hope to begin to make better, more healthful choices. To hear more about our personal goals for 2010 read HERE. We're planning to change some of our purchases from the conventional products to organic ones. All while still staying within our cash budget. I've limited myself to $60 a week and hope to spend even less. This will include all food purchases (meat, dairy and "dirty dozen fruits and veggies will be bought organically), household items, and baby items. I plan to keep you posted on my findings (who has the most reasonable prices and what we're buying as well as if we're sticking to our budget. And, if you want to join me in this organic and natural adventure I will leave a linky for your to link up!

Now, I know that many frugal shoppers have very small budgets that they work with each week to purchase their groceries and other household items (personal care, cleaner, baby items). I am always amazed at how little they can make it on. Every budget is going to look a little different depending on where you live (the price of groceries and whether or not your store has major competition), how many are in your household, the ages of your children, etc. So, if I can give you one word of warning it is this - DO NOT COMPARE THE DOLLAR AMOUNT - you heard me, do not compare the dollar amount that I am spending or that any other frugal mama is spending to your dollar amount. What would be a greater challenge is to figure out how much you are currently spending and then try to spend 10% (or any other percent) less. If you succeed, try cutting a little more, and a little more. But, please, do not cut so much that you are jeopardizing the health of yourself or your family.

As you will see I am only listing dinner, that is because we'll be eating leftovers for lunch or other quick thrown together meals! When I do meal planning I don't usually plan breakfast or lunch - it is just grab and go around here. There is always oatmeal, toast, ingredients for waffles, eggs, etc that make a great breakfast depending on what we're in the mood for. Judah usually eats a little of what we are eating now. Now, on to what my family will be eating this week as we clean out the pantry:

:: Monday
Tilapia Piccata
Sugar Snap Peas
Roasted Potatoes

:: Tuesday
Chicken Provencale (minus the potatoes)
White Corn
Pan roasted green beans with garlic

:: Wednesday
Shrimp Creole
Garlic Toast

:: Thursday
Whole Wheat Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

:: Friday
Fish Tacos
Refried Beans

:: Saturday
Meal at Bible Study

:: Sunday
Santa Fe Soup
Corn Chips, Cheddar Cheese, and Sour Cream


Anonymous said...

What a smart plan! Good luck

rskmom said...

Can you post your recipes?

Christina said...

Excellent advice to not compare yourself to the other frugal folks out there.

It's really easy to beat yourself up for spending $20 more a week than another frugal mom, but as long as you're working on your own goals and working to reduce your own budget, and living within your own means, it shouldn't matter what anybody else is doing.

You have to do what works best for you and your family!

Denise Sawyer said...

rsk mom-
I would be happy to post a few - which ones are you interested in?

Lorianne said...

I would love to see the Tilapia and Fish tacos recipes!!!! I need help with the fish area!! LOL!

April said...

I wish I could do this but because of a thrown breaker that we didn't realize...we lost two freezers full of food! Now, that hurts!

Shannon "Coupon Princess" said...

Great post. I have done the eat from the pantry freezer thing upon occasion, it is totally a great thing to do, plus you can save that cash for something special (or debt paying).