June 27, 2011

Project Grocery: A Review

A brief recap of what Project Grocery is all about: We have a grocery budget ($120/week). And I started tracking it more closely after I realized that - while I was on maternity leave with Jr - we were consistently spending around $180/week.

I had hoped (against hope, as it turns out) that by making better choices, wasting less, and learning to shop smarter and to use coupons it would be possible for me to stay at home when April rolled around again and I was due back at the bank.

That - obviously - didn't happen.

What did happen was that we made better choices, wasted less, and learned to shop smarter and use coupons (judiciously).

So that's good. It almost makes up for sending my kids off to daycare every day.

Oops. Looks like I found a pair of (slightly) bitter pants on our Second Hand Smorgasbord and Cheapskate Extravaganza Day (more on that tomorrow).

Back to today - or yesterday, rather (This is like time travel. I'm getting confused):

This shopping trip  - all $132.84 of it - has brought our twenty-seven week running average to $125.73. Once upon a time I would have done a pantry challenge like this one to beat the average down. So, if I were so inclined, I'd give us $79.56 to spend for the next two weeks, and that would be that.

I'm not so inclined. Being that creative with food - even with WilliamB's persistent assistance - is too much for this girl's plate right now. Instead, we've been gradually whittling away at the average by exercising our flabby self-control muscles and just spending less every week. Radical, I know.

It's been working too, with the minor set back of this week, when I stopped into the Bulk Barn with this coupon - my favourite of all the coupons - and stocked up on oatmeal, brown sugar, quinoa, whole wheat couscous, and dried chickpeas.

That $49.66 bulk extravaganza is what really sent me over. I confidently expect that next week we'll be under again, and the week after that, and the week after that...

And someday, I'll muster up the energy to do another pantry challenge.

Just not today.