Save-a-thon, Week 1

I’ve concluded Week 1 of my “I’m spending the least amount of money humanly possible” campaign. Mostly, this campaign is focused on groceries, as that is where the bulk of my weekly spending occurs.

I was determined to get my average weekly grocery spend down to $100 per week (from about $250 per week). I wasn’t as diligent as I could have been in planning meals or clipping coupons (I actually didn’t clip any). What I *did* do is only stock up on things that: 1) My family eats all the time or 2) I knew exactly how and when I would prepare. I shopped at Trader Joe’s (cheap) and Safeway (where I have a discount card).

In the end, I spent $107 for the week to feed myself, my ex, and our two-year old. Not bad, eh?

Things I did to achieve this:

  1. Ate cereal and milk for breakfast.
  2. Drank free office-brewed coffee.
  3. Brought my lunch to work instead of take-out.
  4. Used frozen veggies in my cooking rather than fresh.
  5. Purposely made extra food for dinner so I could have leftovers for the next day’s lunch – it’s all about economies of scale.
  6. Cut out (most of) the diet soda I drink.
  7. Bought generic brands of everyday products.
  8. Bought items that were on sale at the market and planned meals around that week’s “specials.”

I’m pretty intrigued by saving money with coupons (I keep hearing about these women who get hundreds of dollars of groceries practically for free), but have yet to try it. Where do you find these coupons besides the Sunday paper? I’m not really into signing up for any type of website / service and I certainly don’t want to pay for it. Tips, please!

Share your saving tips and help inspire me – and others.

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5 Replies to “Save-a-thon, Week 1”

  1. Trader Joe’s is cheap???
    Where do you live?

    I go to Trader Joe’s because they have stuff that other stores don’t have. And that’s exactly the reason why they are NOT necessarily cheap.
    But it’s an excellent store anyway.

  2. Me and my partner are also trying to figure out ways to cut down our bills, given the rising cost of absolutely everything in the UK.

    One thing we’ve recently got into, and have had good results already, is growing your own stuff. If you’ve got time to plant a few sides and water them every so often, in the long run you end saving a bomb. Admittedly it won’t happen overnight because you’ve got to wait for everything to grow, but once it has done you’ll begrudge ever paying for herbs and vegetables ever again!

  3. I’m interested in this sort of thing as a college budgeted individual, but the blog doesn’t give nearly enough details in the break down of the food bought and meals made.

  4. Hey Erica,

    Try the following link: Mommy Saves Big

    Sometimes I will find a coupon I can use, sometimes not. If you shop at Target, you can go to their website and they will allow you to print coupons for foodstuff they sell.

    You could try too. Hope this helps a little.

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