I am feeling good these days. I am relaxed and not beating myself up for missing the gym or eating poorly once in awhile. I haven’t lost any further weight, but that’s OK, I know I haven’t really been giving it my all lately.
As for green and thrifty, I am managing to keep our grocery bills down by actually shopping from a list and sticking to it. There are still a few additions but they tend to be much healthier and generally veggie or fruit related. Much cheaper than processed crud. I bought veggies and meat and kept it around $100 for the week. Lots of meat. That’s a significant savings over my old grocery bills though. I am ashamed to say I was spending around $600 a month just on groceries, and another $500 on eating out. Ridiculous. We have eaten pizza a few times this month, but that’s still a significant savings over actually going out. If I can keep our grocery bills to $100 a week (totally doable) and plan dinners, we’ll save a huge amount of money each month.
I tell myself that it’s because we have two growing boys and we don’t want to skimp on food, but really, I have just channeled all of my other shopping into groceries. I was a shopaholic. Big time. I would go to Target and shop out of boredom. I couldn’t walk in without buying $50 worth of stuff that we didn’t actually need. I just picked up whatever looked interesting or shiny and new. I curbed that monster a year or more ago, but I transferred it to groceries, buying whatever looked appetizing or the treats that I thought the family would like (and lots of chocolate for me). Ice cream, chips, and alcohol were staples in our house, after all, who doesn’t enjoy a beer (or hard cider for me) and some chips after a long day? We are certainly not alcoholics, but there was always a six-pack or a bottle of wine in the house. Not any longer. No chips except for the occasional bag (not 4 like I used to buy), and ice cream only comes in those little single serving containers, and those only occasionally. Not only do we save a ton of money, but we are healthier, too.
I have been shopping with a list for a little while now and meal planning for a few weeks and we’ve been able to save an extra $200 just in the last couple of weeks. More next paycheck because there are fewer bills to come out. It’s amazing how much these tips work when you actually use them! I know, I’ve been talking a good game for over a year now. I knew about all of this, I was just never really doing it more than once in awhile. Now I have to think about all the expenses coming up, and it’s got me worried. Mostly moving. Worry is a good motivator to get things in order. I am shopping once a week, from a list, and shopping the cheapest store in the area that carries everything I want. Now that that’s mostly produce and meat, a regular grocery store has the best sales. It’s a little bit of a drive to the nicer one, but it’s worth it in the quality of food we get versus the price. I still go to Target for dry goods and such, but they don’t carry much in the way of veggies and meat in my area. (Otherwise, I’d be there all the time. A blanket 5% off is nothing to sneeze at!)