Saturday, October 23, 2010

$50/week grocery budget the cost of groceries going up???

Things here are going great! I'm feeling pretty good for being 24 weeks pregnant. We're enjoying our girls and the beautiful fall weather, and we can't wait for our new little addition. Only one problem -- my husband has started not receiving full-time hours at work again. UGH. It's so "feast or famine" around here. It could definitely be worse, but it sure isn't fun! Anyway, I try to make our $50 budget count EVERY week, but this week I REALLY needed to make it count because there is just no flexibility in the budget for a quick $1 cheeseburger drive-thru, run to the store for milk, etc. We don't do a whole lot of that anyway, but with our busy schedule it does happen sometimes! This week, we'll probably go out to eat for a cheap lunch after church on Sunday, and that will be about it! Everything else we'll have to come from the fridge or pantry!

I made two trips to the store this week. The first was to Hy-Vee (pictured above.) It was a really good trip, but I was really unimpressed (and have been for a few weeks) with the price of staples like bread and milk. I couldn't get a decent loaf of bread for much under $3 on sale (forget about full price,) or a gallon of 2% milk for much under $4. Not such great prices, especially since I'm still trying to stomach our tax hike in KS! I typically think that Hy-Vee has the lowest full-price prices, but that was not my experience this week. Here is a list of what I got:

2 tubs of generic cottage cheese
1 Palermo's pizza
6 boxes of GM cereal (Free after coupon and catalina)
4 cans of generic tomato sauce
3 jars of unsweetened generic applesauce
1 5lb bg of generic flour
1 can of beef broth
4 boxes of Kraft mac and cheese
1 tub of Planter's cashew halves
2 boxes of Rice A Roni
1 pint of Belfonte ice cream
1 bag of Tyson frozen chicken breasts
1 package of 8 tortillas
2.14 lbs of Cortland apples
1 package of Hormel pork chops

My total at Hy-Vee was about $37.00 pre-tax.

I made a second trip to Price Chopper. I got a much better deal on "whole" foods at PC. This is definitely not the usual case, so I'm going to have to start watching for a trend. It may be that we need to do less shopping at Hy-Vee for awhile. Anyway, I went a little bit over budget, but I figured going over budget would go further at the grocery store than anywhere else, so it's not that huge of a deal. I will borrow the extra few dollars from somewhere else this week. At Price Chopper, I got:

2 dozen generic eggs ($.79/dozen)
1 gallon of hormone free 2% milk (Full price at $3.55)
1 Nature's Pantry loaf of 100% whole wheat bread ($1.99)
2 bottles of Old Orchard apple juice ($.99/bottle)
1 small package of blackberries ($2.00)
1 lb of strawberries ($1.50)
2.5 lbs of Anjou pears ($.99/lb)

I spent $15.05 pre-tax, and I saved $8.99. The milk will kill me every time. Ha!

Since I know we have to eat at home this week, I did some meal planning accordingly. I already tried a new recipe for caramel apple pork chops (not that great,)  and I have a new recipe for chicken burrito filling that you make in the crock pot. I'll also probably make a big pan of cavatini and an extra big batch of tuna noodle salad. My family has also been WAY in to Red Hot Jello lately, so I'll stock the fridge. : ) Later in the week, we will probably have breakfast for dinner, and we'll fill in the gaps with leftovers, sandwiches, cottage cheese, baby's favorite, fresh fruit, frozen veggies and cereal. I always feel a little overwhelmed at the beginning of a tight budget week, but it usually flies right on by!


  1. I hear you on the milk. I buy the hormone free too and that is always more money... but worth it to me especially since I have daughters!

    Thanks for sharing the cavatini recipe! I'm going to make it this week... looks really good!

  2. I love your blog, and have a similar budget for my family of 5. But a few months ago I started following the Krazy Coupon ladies at and have gone from trying to scrape by each week to being able to not only providing my family with more than enough, but also help friends and family, as well as community outreach programs. I used to think that coupons weren't worth the time and effort, but seeing how much farther my money goes now is definitely worth the hour or so a week I spend with coupons each week. Hope you check it out, it's totally free, just takes a little effort to get organized in the beginning. I am SO glad that I started doing it, it seems like food is getting more expensive each time I go to the store, and I love knowing that I am getting to most for my money :)

  3. The price of every thing at the grocery store is going up. I use coupons to help some, also have started to use a price book. I mark down the price of an item and when I see it at it's lowest I stock up until it comes down again. We live in the tiniest of places so can not stock up to much.

  4. we are in a similar situation when it comes to income so I can relate on how hard and stressful it can be. I agree food prices do seem to be going up but there are still great deals to be had.

    Costco sells hormone free milk much cheaper than anywhere else. Also check out your local convience store for milk. often its less than groceries (even the discount ones)

    bakery outlets are also great for bread. Look around I bet you have something near by.

    good luck and I hope things start to turn around for you soon.