My real food budget is $330 each month, including food, household items and toiletries. Each week I crunch the numbers to see where I stand. Today marks the end of the month. You can read about the halfway point here, where I spent $251.93 of my budget.
Do you ever get the feeling mid-month that no matter how hard you try, you’re going to go over in budget? And that no matter how much you rack your brain, you can’t quite pinpoint where you spent your money?
That’s how I feel about this month. Unfortunately, the numbers don’t lie though. Here’s how it all panned out.
Grocery Outlet – $8.98
Whole Cane Sugar, 2.99*
Whole Organic Raw Sugar, 3.99*
Organic Brown Sugar, 3.99*Organic Coconut Palm Sugar, 3.99*
Organic Sugar, 2.99*
PS – The * means I’m halving the cost for the grocery budget. These are items specifically purchased for the blog, but since we end up eating them too I can’t justify not including at least some of the cost.
Costco – $97.95
Fresh Cranberries, 3.89
Cashews 2lb15, 15.49
Fresh Mozzarella x2, 6.99
Organic Rainforest Blend Coffee, 14.79
Kirkland Honey 5lb, 12.99*
Kerrygold Butter x2, 6.79*
Kirkland Pesto, 7.99
Clementines 5lb, 5.99
Organic Chicken Drumsticks, 10.45
Another bag of fresh cranberries to add to the freezer, cashews for snacking and fresh mozzarella for pizza. We had a whole bag of coffee in the pantry from a super cheap stock up not too long ago, but we gave that bag to our friend who helped us fix the sliding glass door that broke for no reason in the middle of the night.
Honey is a pantry staple, but it was also used as a sweetener in one of the versions of sweetened condensed milk. We didn’t need more butter, but with the holidays coming up, I didn’t want to take a chance of running out. With my luck, another baker in the family (with only good intentions, mind you) would use my last stick of yellow yum on a batch of oatmeal chocolate chip cookies… and then leave me without any grass-fed goodness for the big Thanksgiving feast. And you have to have butter on Thanksgiving, right? And Costco is closed on Thanksgiving Day… Which is probably a good thing though… can you imagine the madness?
Oh yeah, I also bought two boxes because the stock of Kerrygold was low. Like, WAY low. Like how it was at the beginning of this year when Costco told me they weren’t going to stock Kerrygold butter outside of the holiday season.
That was a sad day.
But fortunately that guy was wrong and Costco started carrying it regularly in March. Woo-hoo!
Anyway, we’re good on butter for the rest of the year.
Savemart – $20.72
Pork Chops, 6.29
Whipped Cream, 1.79*
A couple days before our family arrived for the week of Thanksgiving, I realized that I only had a single package of drumsticks in the freezer. 6 drumsticks for 6 people wasn’t going to fly for 6 days. Even if one of those days is spent gorging on Turkey. So I picked up these four steaks and pork chops that were each marked down. My receipt shows a total of $5.50 coming off the meat, but I couldn’t tell you which package was discounted how much, so the prices above are the originally tagged prices.
The whipped cream was for making homemade latte’s. Like the peppermint mocha. And this apple pie smoothie from my new book (that launches next month – EEK!). You could drink either without whipped cream, but it just looks so much better with it. 😉
Asian Market – $7
Pomegranates x12, .25eaPersimmons
I don’t know how much longer pomegranates and persimmons will be in season, but I’m taking full advantage while I can. Mr. Crumbs took the seeds out and yielded roughly 64oz of arils. Such a treat to have them handy as a snack! The persimmons have been for snacking too, and some dehydrating for our family trip later this month.
Savemart – $3.33
Whole Milk, 2.65*
Limes x5, 1
This was a very, VERY last minute trip. I was in the midst of making the sweetened condensed milk when I realized I didn’t have enough milk. So I bought a quart of conventional whole milk and used it up.
Conventional. I know. Gallon was the only option for organic milk and they didn’t have whole. Again. And I really wanted whole for the milk recipe. So conventional it was. But trust me – I wasn’t (and I’m still not) happy about it.
Limes for Mr. Crumbs sparkling waters and I stumbled across a bag of marked down spinach. Perfect since we were just about out. (We use spinach for smoothies on a daily basis.)
Walmart – $21.66
Tortilla Chips, 2.98
Orange Juice, 2.78*Cottage Cheese, 2.84*
Salsa Verde, 1.98
Sour Cream, 1.64
Toilet Paper, 10.97
Tortilla chips, salsa verde, sour cream and jalepenos for taco night that needed toppings, chips and homemade salsa. Orange juice and cottage cheese for recipe testing. Toilet paper to restock the closet. Because running out of toilet paper when company is in town is just embarrassing. 🙂
Costco – $26.62
Yellow Onions, 3.39
Sour Cream, 3.99
Organic Apples, 8.99*
Cream Cheese, 6.69
All the fruit and spinach were for oranges for recipe testing. Onions were for cooking, sour cream and cream cheese for the most amazing vanilla bean cheesecake I’ve ever had in my entire life. Seriously, it was absolutely amazing. I need to go back and update the recipe with the slight changes I’ve made… note to self…
Savemart – $13.14
Organic 2% milk, 5.88*
Limes x5, 1
White potatoes 10lb, 2.99
Sweet potatoes, 1.35
So… do you remember this question I posted on Facebook? It was because of this trip, right here. I was stuck between two evils of milk – conventional vs. low-fat – and I had no idea which to choose. In the end, I chose the organic. Apparently, most of you guys would have done the same thing too.
Limes again for Mr. Crumbs, pretzels were requested for snacking and white potatoes for various dinner nights. Yams for Thanksgiving dinner and sweet potatoes for recipe experiments that turned out quite nice. I’ll share the fluffy whole wheat sweet potato dinner roll recipe with you guys once I fine tune it.
Total End of Month – $451.33
Holy smokes. Seriously? I knew I’d be over, but I had NO CLUE it would be WAY over. So much for a “winning” streak for 2013, eh?
I talked with Mr. Crumbs last week, thinking the budget would be blown for sure. Unfortunately, I was right. At least he’s on board with a pantry challenge for the next three weeks – essentially until we leave for an out of town trip. I’ve already begun the meal plan and I’m working on a budget too, since this overage is going to have to come out of somewhere…