We always make a list before we go shopping. This week we made ours while driving back to Houston. We talk about what we have coming up (lunch meetings or parties) and if we will be at home (driving to San Antonio) to figure out how many meals we need to plan for.
Then we remember what we already have. We made a batch of beans last week that needs to be eaten and we have half a bag of rice. So we decided that tacos and enchiladas were good choices. We can make tortillas so we just need to add cheese, a tomato, tomato sauce, and some meat to our list. We know that we can make this last us for four dinners.
Because we are buying meat we also know that we can get by with just half of the package for tacos and we can use the other half for spaghetti. So we add pasta, and pasta sauce to our list. This should last us another 4 dinners.
We add items that always stay on our list, things like bread, fresh fruit, and peanut butter and jelly (if we don't have any but at this time we do).
We also like to get some kind of snacks or chips because we're munchy like that.
Breakfasts are kind of random and since milk costs so much we really haven't been buying cereal much lately. For now we have some oatmeal that we bought for around $.10 at CVS on clearance. There's eggs, bread, and the occasional chocolate chip cookie from the lobby. ;)
Lunch is almost always PB&J, with fruit, and some chips or pretzels.
So here's our list!
Next we look to see if we know we can find coupons for our items (we know what items often offer coupons but you can check for all your items on sites like coupons.com) but we almost always buy store brands because they beat even the coupon prices. We look for combo deals in paper ads but most of the time those cost too much. Sometimes we find promotions like 10 items for $10 and match some items with coupons to get super low prices and stock up!
Another rule we use is: Shop with your calculator! We add everything together as we put in items in the cart so we know we are staying within budget. Often times we have to put things back to even out the total.
This week we grabbed everything on our list with some extra money left over, so we bought butter (we have been out for awhile) and yeast (just finished our last bit last week!) and our total came out to $16 even! We had to add $1.17 for flour that we bought at SuperS with a coupon, so a total of $17.17! That leaves us with $2.83 to save for a rainy day. :)
This is what it take to feed us for two weeks.
Day one (and two)!
And it's so good!!!!