Tag: healthy

Book Review: An Inconvenient Woman by Dominick Dunne

Book Review: An Inconvenient Woman by Dominick Dunne

At the end of September, faced with a mountain of books I had not read in almost a decade, I decided to start sorting through my books and reread any of those that I was unsure of keeping. I originally created this list of ten […]

2023 Goals Mid-Year Check In

2023 Goals Mid-Year Check In

As I sit here mid-way through 2023 with my first official Covid infection I thought I would take some time to look at my progress with my 2023 goals. For 2023 I wanted to focus on self-care and take time to relax every day. I […]

September 2022 Grocery Spending Wrap Up

September 2022 Grocery Spending Wrap Up

September was an expensive month for us as far as groceries go. All of our stock up trips seemed to happen this September and that caused our grocery total to be higher than usual. We also have been trying to eat healthier which of course costs more in general. Our goal was to keep spending at $600 but we ended up nearly doubling that at $1,185.21. Needless to say, we are going to try and keep our spending as low as possible for October. I am hoping to keep it at $600 for October and so far I think we can be close.

 

Grocery Spending Total
September Grocery Spending Total

Our above numbers for September reflect the stock up trips we took to Franz, Bob’s Red Mill, the large Amazon order of Benefit Bars and the Clif bar order which was actually Luna bars. I am working on getting our kids weaned off of bars as a source of protein but we will always have Luna bars in the house since they are gluten-free and sometimes it is the only thing I eat for breakfast on a busy morning! Having something quick to grab and eat in the car is always a bonus.

This haul was our first one for September at Costco and it was a pretty big one. We were out of a lot of basics and I wanted to buy some prepackaged items for meal prep that we don’t usually buy. Overall we have eaten most of what we bought at the start of the month. We are still working on the snack type items but we definitely had to replenish our fresh items this month. All of my grocery hauls are on my YouTube channel which can be found here. I don’t get everything filmed but I at least try to get the big Costco hauls.

Roast Beef Sandwich
Roast Beef Sandwich

I tried to take more pictures of what we made with the food we bought to show how we were using everything up but I have fallen out of the habit and had a hard time remembering. We found a good deal on chuck roast so my husband made some homemade roast beef this month. I replicated a sandwich I had at Pickles Deli out on Whidbey Island where a gigantic pickle is used instead of bread and it was pretty good. I bought these pickles at Winco a while back and they are just ok.

Egg Bites
Egg Bites

Another strategy I tried this month was to do more batch cooking towards the start of the week and then eat through that and it worked really well. When I was working I never had time to cook on the weekends but now that I am home and child free during the week I can dedicate a couple of hours to cooking on Monday or Tuesday so that I don’t have to worry about breakfasts or lunches for a few days. I loved making these egg bites and now that we have more eggs I will definitely be making more.

Bob's Red Mill
Bob’s Red Mill

We definitely did some bulk buying this month, including a trip to the Bob’s Red Mill store in Oregon while we were down there on a business trip. We bought two 25lb bags of gluten-free oats which will last us about a year. Bob’s Red Mill stopped selling large items on their website right when we were thinking of buying another 25lb bag so since we were down there we bought two. These are the oats we bought and we love them. As someone with Celiac, I have never had a problem with these oats but I do have issues if I eat regular ones.

Pumpkins
Pumpkins

Another item we did go into Costco for but I am not counting as part of our groceries is 300 pumpkins for our fall school event. We called around and local farms were not able to have pumpkins to us in time so we went to Costco and were able to buy them there. We went to two separate stores to get these. I did bake one of the ones we had previously bought for ourselves and it is quite tasty. I have a soup recipe I want to try with another one and I will probably just bake the others after Halloween. I love buying a bunch of pumpkins in the fall to decorate and then eat later. It is such a sustainable way to decorate and I am pretty sad we could not get any of our pumpkins to grow this year because I love including home grown ones as well!

Squash and Beef
Squash and Beef

One of the smaller trips I took at the end of the month was purely for sale items. I bought another pack of chuck roast to be made into roast beef and one gigantic yellow squash. I was not able to grow squash again this year due to the wet spring so I was happy to find it on sale at Fred Meyer. We just bought some zucchini this week at Safeway which I am very excited to eat.

 

That’s it for our September grocery spending recap. Bottom line is that we spent a bunch but we did buy items we won’t need to buy for a while so I am hoping October will be much closer to our goal. What are you spending tips for this fall?

 

Links:

Benefit Bars

Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Oats

Pickles Deli

 

August 2022 Grocery Spending Wrap Up

 

My Favorite Dystopian Novels

July 2022 Final Grocery Spending

July 2022 Final Grocery Spending

We were out of a lot of staples for July so I knew we would have an expensive month for groceries. We are still working hard at keeping our food budget well under $1,000 by watching prices more carefully, eating up what we have and […]

June 2022 Final Grocery Spending

June 2022 Final Grocery Spending

Our June grocery goal was to eat through our fridge and freezer as much as possible and for the most part we reached this goal. I am super proud of our progress! Up until the last week of June we kept our spending under $300 […]

May 2022 Final Grocery Spending

We are working on our grocery spending for 2022 and our goal for May was to do a low spend month. Unfortunately we ended up a little bit swamped during the middle of the month and we both spent too much money and I did not get around to filming all of our grocery runs. I ran some estimates on our spending and it looks like we ended up spending right around $500 which is a huge improvement from typical $1000 a month spending habits. Although we did not reach our $200 goal I am pretty proud of our progress at reducing our spending.

 

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I tracked most of our spending on our YouTube Channel and linked our posts below. If you haven’t subscribed yet you can right here.

First Grocery Haul:

 

Second Grocery Haul:

 

Third Grocery Haul:

 

Fourth Grocery Haul:

 

Overall I am happy with our progress. May tends to be a spendy month for us with Mother’s Day, a family birthday, Memorial Day weekend and we make most of our summer purchases in May as well. We were successfully able to cut our grocery bill in half which I am pretty proud of. If you remember, April we tried to cut down on our spending and ended up spending the same amount we always do. My goal is not perfection though but to make progress every month and see what works best for us.

Lunch
Lunch.

I am hoping to use the summer to cut back on our packaged food eating but that will lead us to buy more staples such as gluten-free oats, flour and sugar. I am not sure if it will cost more to make food from scratch at home or buy it at Costco. Prices seem to have stabilized a bit but leave a comment below if you are not seeing that in your area. Luckily the upcoming wheat shortage will not effect us much since we really don’t eat much of it besides bread for the kids. My kids would be perfectly ok with gluten-free bread as long as it is the homemade bread my husband makes but right now it is much cheaper to buy regular bread for them. I don’t think there will be much of a price increase for rice and gluten-free flour in the near future but maybe later. We just bought a 25lb bag of this Bob’s Red Mill all in one gluten-free flour so we shouldn’t need to buy more for a while.

Free Lunch
Free Lunch Unboxing. Three whole pizzas, amazing!

One of the ways we were able to cut our grocery budget down was to utilize the Universal Free Lunch program at a local school district. We have gone on and off over the past couple of years mostly during the times when the kids are home for a stretch since the meals are easily put together by the kids independently but starting in May we made a point to start going every week and I have been posting our items on our YouTube channel every week. Although this has saved us some money, they gave us so much every week that we ended up freezing a lot of it. We are eating through what we have this month and throughout the summer since the program ends in June. This program is amazing and benefits so many members of the community. It will be a huge loss for many families when schools no longer provide lunch and breakfast for every student.

Free Lunches.
Free Lunches.

That wraps up our grocery spending for May with some decent progress in cutting our food bill down. I am posting our first freezer cleanout video this week and will do a spending check in mid-way through the month. How is your grocery budget faring?

 

This site participates in affiliate links and receives a small fee for affiliate recommendations at no cost to you. As always we only recommend products we have tried ourselves. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

 

Links:

Reusable Bags

Gluten-free cream of mushroom soup

Gluten-free fig bars

Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-free Flour

April 2022 Spending Wrap Up

May 2022 Spending Check In

May 2022 Spending Check In

Our goal for May of 2022 was to spend as little money as possible on groceries for the month. We are using our local free lunches and breakfasts for the community as well as eating through our pantry items and just supplementing with items from […]

Garden Update 04.30.22

Garden Update 04.30.22

Welcome to the end of April when our garden starts to take off. We have been celebrating the emergence of our asparagus and planted many flowers and I am super excited for the summer when all of our plants start taking off. I am still […]

Thursday Mini-Channel Share Day

Thursday Mini-Channel Share Day

I thought I would share some of my favorite up and coming YouTube channels today. I am noticing a lot of Food Bank haul unboxing videos trending in my feed and I thought I would highlight a few. Many people rely on food banks temporarily when they are in need and food banks are a valuable resource to the community. Please, if you are in need always ask for help.

 

One of my goals this year is to highlight some of the food programs across the U.S. that greatly benefit people, especially children. The universal free lunch program that was started during the pandemic is an example of how feeding children without any income requirements has helped families tremendously. Many children in the United States are living at or below the poverty line and guaranteed breakfast and lunch is many times the only food kids get to eat in a day. Below is the link to my video where I go through what we received in the middle of April.

Free Lunch Unboxing

 

Fabulous Food Bank Unboxing Channels:

 

Mustard Saves

Mustard Saves is one of my favorites. She started out as a couponer and moved to food bank videos when they decided to utilize their food pantry after some sort of financial difficulties. She has some fabulous videos on how to cook through what you have, rotating between the freezer, pantry and fridge clean outs and on how to store the food once you receive it since typically people only go once or twice a month.

 

Joveta’s Kitchen

Joveta’s Kitchen is another one of my favorites. She shows everyone how to cook many of the items from scratch and helps out her community as well. There are so many good recipes on this channel and Joveta definitely knows how to make the most of everything she gets.

 

Kemp Freehold

I came across Kemp Freehold when I was watching Joveta’s Kitchen and it looks like they started using their food bank after a job loss. This family has a few kids and are homesteaders and I thought I would include them as well.

 

If you are in need the website for Feeding America has a search function so you can find food pantries in your area. Local churches and community centers can also be a resource as well as your local school district.

 

As always, thank you for reading!

 

April 2022 Low Spend Month Goals

 

2022 Garden Supply Purchases

 

 

 

 

 

 

2022 Garden Supply Purchases

2022 Garden Supply Purchases

For 2022 we are really expanding our garden and possibly adding in some chickens later in the year. We are garden zone 8b in the Pacific Northwest located in the Seattle area. Our weather is wet a lot of the year and we have been […]


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