Monthly Spending Summary (Jan.)

You might remember that in Dec. I was trying to decide if we should up our grocery budget from $190/mo.  Well, we decided to add $10/mo. since food prices are going up and also since the deals aren’t quite as good as they used to be.

I was under budget by quite a bit for the month.  Part of that was due to the fact that our church family provides 9 meals after you have a baby.  It’s SO nice!  And many of the people gave enough for more than one meal so I basically had to do no cooking for 3 weeks.  And as a result, I also didn’t need very many groceries.

I also was making an effort to use up some of my stockpile so that I didn’t need to buy as much.  It’s time to use up some of the food that’s been sitting in my cupboards for a while!  I think I need to do that again this month though because there are still quite a few “old” things that should get moved along.

Anyway…here’s the figures.

Monthly Grocery/Household Budget: $200
Total Spent: $140.32
Total Saved with Coupons/Sales: $187.14

Week 1: $17.51
Week 2: $70.75
Week 3: $33.05
Week 4: $19.01

Credits: $23.99
This was from two rebates, one for Prevacid and one from Rite Aid Single Check Rebates.

Ending Monthly Balance: $116.33

Ending Annual Balance: $83.67
- In case you are confused, this is the amount I have left over for the year. So actually, I am under budget by $83.67 for the year.

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  1. by Sarah Myers

    On February 1, 2012 at 8:11 am

    I would like to know how to do this without having to go to a bunch of different stores. I have 5 children ranging in age from 8 months to 11 and I go to school full time among other commitments. I simply do not have the time to shop all over the place. am interested in coupons but often they are not for the things I purchase. How can I save?

  2. by Lydia Beiler

    On February 1, 2012 at 10:02 am

    Sarah, wow, you do sound like you have a lot on your plate! Kudos to you for wanting to still figure out how you can save with coupons!

    I’ll try to answer your question without being too lengthy. :)

    First of all, you mentioned that you don’t often see coupons for the things you purchase. Let me tell you, you can find coupons for about anything so I think there is hope for you. :) Check out this site to search for available coupons. It’s amazing what all you can find coupons for. As for using coupons, here are a few tips. Sometimes you might see a sale on an item that you use but don’t necessarily need right then. However since it is something you normally purchase and it is on sale and there is a coupon I often go ahead and buy it. Because chances are by the time you actually NEED the item it won’t be on sale and there won’t be a coupon available. In the long run this saves you a significant amount of money. Also be open to trying new brands. Suppose you always buy Peter Pan peanut butter but you see a great deal on Skippy PB consider trying the Skippy PB. If you are like me you often find that you like the new brand just as good and sometimes better. And if you don’t like it as good it’s usually at least tolerable and you can still use it up.

    Going to several stores helps maximize your savings but you can still certainly save by just shopping at one or even two stores. I don’t know what grocery, drugstores or big box stores you shop at but I would recommend Googling the store name and coupon matchups and you should be able to find a blog that covers that store. Then all you have to do is print the coupons or clip them from the Sunday paper and buy the items. The blog will tell you what items you can get that week for a good price. Does that help? If you let me know what stores you shop at I can try to find a couple of blogs that cover those stores to help you out.

    The other option you have is to buy on Amazon. I do weekly posts of good deals there and you could check out prices on some of the things you use a lot of regularly. Often their prices are pretty decent especially if you don’t feel like you have time to use coupons in store a lot.

    Hope that helps! Remember ANYTHING you save is great even if it is just a dollar here and there. And feel free to ask more questions as you have them. I’ll be glad to try to help.