grocery game monthly challenge

10 Smart Ways To Trim Daily Expenses on Travel Food : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #3 Feb 15-21

DAILY EXPENSES TRAVEL FOOD (1)

TRAVELLING IS NOT AS CHEAP AS EVERYONE THINKS…BUT IT CAN BE!

 

One of the toughest parts about creating a travel budget is planning a food budget for your travelling experience. Whether you stay in a hotel, resort, or you hop in your vehicle for a road trip daily expenses of food must be accounted for or even estimated to keep a tight budget from exploding.

Here are ways we’ve learned to save money on food while travelling that we want to share with you so you don’t make the same mistakes we made along the way.

Not everyone uses a travel budget when going on vacation which means the grocery budget or entertainment category may be the next two logical places to carve a bit of money from. The reasoning behind using the grocery budget is because if you’re not home to buy groceries you spend that money on travel food. Makes sense to me if it’s a simple road trip but a destination holiday may prove a bit more costlier.

Related: How much should my grocery budget be?

Most travellers are so focused on planning the trip that they put food on the back-burner because it doesn’t seem like such a big deal. You can always eat out, right? There has to be food somewhere? You’re on vacation…just eat and spend money because you earned it. If you’ve planned the money to splash then use it up but if not I’d caution using this money mentality on vacation.

Unless you’ve got unlimited funds or your employer is covering your food expenses you WILL want to create some sort of plan so your daily expenses on food fit how much money you have to spend. The last thing you will want to do is bring out your credit card to start charging for dining out because you’ve run out of cash.

I’ve travelled to many countries around the world and although I only ate once or twice a day in my twenties it was still important for me to eat well while saving as much money as I could. I wasn’t going to starve myself because I was being cheap on holiday as I wanted to eat what the locals ate too. It’s about being realistic about what you can afford.

 

Don’t be this Person

 

Do you know the people who go on vacation who act like they are rich when they have piles of debt at home? Those are the people who spend money and deal with the consequences later. Big mistake. Your first mistake is travelling with high amounts of consumer debt and the second not planning your daily expenses on what could be your highest costs apart from the hotel and airfare. FOOD!

Before I would board any plane to go on vacation to another country or jump in the car for a road trip I would always do 3 things to jump-start the trip. Don’t get me wrong I’m not a crazy frugal traveller  either, I just don’t want to deal with any financial aftermath if I don’t need to.

This is what I do and you should to!

  1. Research Cost Saving Ideas for Food
  2. Research Where the food shops, food trucks, food stands and popular food hot-spots were located.
  3. Make sure I always had somewhere to cook

I didn’t always come away spending less money as most of my investigation came from searching online but I did learn various ways to cut expenses on food costs while travelling through trial and error. You’ll always set one bad example of reckless daily food expenses while travelling but hopefully you’ll learn what not to do the next time you travel.

 

Road trip daily expenses for food

 

Probably one of the ways travellers blow money on food is the somewhat convenient and simple road trip. Whether you stop at a pit stop on the highway or pull into a city and hit up a local restaurant or fast food joint these expenses can bust your budget.

Something we started doing when we would go on a road trip is pack a cooler full of food, snacks and cold beverages. Once we had our son even more so did we pack food because we did for him too.

If the weather is nice we tend to stop off somewhere and enjoy a picnic on a blanket like we did this past summer in Tobermory, Ontario. If we’re checking in at a hotel or just enjoying a daily road trip food is less of a priority to beverages but we always have snacks. You’ll spend a fortune on coffee, water, juice and pop if you plan to buy it while travelling.

Fill your cooler with lots of snacks and drinks so you can save money to spend on other things. Going to McDonald’s to get 2 Big Macs, 2 medium fries, 2 large coffees and a kid’s meal will cost you a staggering $18 (with a Buy 1 get 1 free coupon too…ouch) which is outrageous for fast food. Whoever tells you fast food restaurant eating is cheap is lying to you unless you stick to the value menu but even then you’re still hungry.

You could take that $18 and turn it into delicious healthy food that you can make a meal from and pack in your vehicle. On a road trip most rest stops have tables you can enjoy something to eat that you’ve made at home or in your hotel before moving forward on a long road-trip.

Even a road trip to local Ontario tourist spots like Wonderland, Marine Land, Thousand Islands, Niagara Falls, Grand Bend, Provincial and National Parks and so on will cost you to eat out. Pack food and drinks and save your cash to enjoy the high costs of travelling to these tourist locations.

Not everyone wants to cook while on holiday but if you have the opportunity to do so, balance how many times you eat out and make food to save money. Many hotels and motels give you access to a mini refrigerator, kitchenette and a barbeque so you can prepare light meals in your room or outdoors.

A motel we stayed at in the summer in Tobermory had a kitchen including a microwave and outdoor barbeque that we could use to prepare and cook food if we wanted to instead of going to a restaurant. We would use the room refrigerator to store our food or keep it in a cooler packed with ice.

When the wife and I were spending a few days touring London England as she’s never been we decided to eat at the hotel one evening. Big mistake. We let our exhaustion from the full day of walking and tube travelling take over our stomachs and decided to eat in at the hotel. Never again. I wouldn’t let my wife see the bill but she knew it was pretty high, and it was. If we were smart we would have grabbed fish n chips or a decent meal at a local shop and brought it along with us.

Typically I would always pack a lunch and bring drinks in a back pack but this particular road trip wasn’t planned so well. I wanted to show my wife as much of England as I could when she would visit including the places I’ve lived. Things change when you move away from certain areas so it’s still important to do your research. Bad on me.

Related: 10 ideas to Save Money On Travel

 

Destination travelling daily expenses for food

 

Whether you’re travelling and  board a boat, airplane, train or other means of transportation that will get you from point A to point B out of the town and country food expenses can get costly. Typically when you are on a boat food expenses are covered in the price of the ticket as you’d expect from a cruise. This is great because you don’t have to worry about spending extra money on food because it’s already supplied to you. Keep in mind though that snacks may not be so pack some away if you don’t want to pay outrageous costs in a cruise shop.

When destination travelling you may have the food included in an all-inclusive resort but for those of you who don’t care for resorts like me planning food expenses takes a bit more work. If I was staying in a self catering apartment I made sure that there was a fully equipped kitchen that I could cook in which meant I did a bit of online research to see if there were any markets close by or vendors on the street where I could buy fresh foods.

Many times I would cook during the week while I was on holiday and it saved me a bundle of money. I also ate out at restaurants and would snack on street food but I never went over-board. I also learned to be picky about the foods I chose to eat.

The worst thing you could do is buy food you aren’t familiar with and waste your money. If you don’t speak the local language don’t buy food if you have no idea what you’re eating. If you do, prepare that you may hate it, it may not agree with you and you waste money.

For some this is part of the travelling thrill so budget that thrill money if you want to eat on a whim. My suggestions would be to search online for popular foods that a country was famous for and whether pricing was reasonable to stock up on while I was visiting.

Some of the best restaurants that I ate in were the cheapest but with the best food. I could hardly finish my meals in Thailand because they were filling, cheap and they gave you lots to eat. Most of the street vendors were more than excited to have foreigners buy and eat their food. Keep in mind that you can always barter with many street vendors because they want your business so understanding how to barter in any country I visited was important to me.

Daily expenses for food included looking for snacks that were budget-friendly in the shops to eat at night rather than always buying actual meals. When staying in a resort you may not have the luxury of snacks unless you go to a local resort store but you’ll pay the price for those snacks. I’d recommend bringing snacks from home to off-set any of the costs that aren’t needed.

You might be shocked to find that there are coupons for restaurants if you reserve seats ahead of time or print them online before you take off on holiday. My wife explained to me on a past trip to Disney World eating at the resort would cost a fortune. It was recommended to pack beverages and snacks every day.

If you are staying off the Disney resort in a condo with a kitchen or renting a house or using a timeshare you can cook but you can also visit restaurants in the local area and use coupons to cut costs. You pay for convenience no matter where you travel but if you don’t mind a bit of work you can save yourself some money even if it’s simply by hitting, print or opening a savings app on your smartphone.

I know when we plan to take our son to Disney I’ll be doing extensive research to keep food costs low while enjoying every minute of seeing our son smile.

 

Buying snacks costs BIG BUCKS!

 

Unless you’re buying an unusual snack that you’ve never had before and if you don’t try it there and then you may never again, avoid buying snacks. I loved eating foods that the locals made but I would only get what was new to me and something I’d probably never make at home.

If you’re boarding a plane don’t buy snacks on the plane if they aren’t included apart from your complimentary pretzels because they are pricey. A small chocolate bar could run you upwards of $2 each when you’re in the air and $0.50 at the Dollar store on the ground. Always stock a few treats for air-travel and cut food expenses along the way. Some flights actually give you the option of having an in-flight meal or not. Opting out of having the meal can actually save you more than you think.

For some people when they go on vacation their bowels don’t agree with them in the new environment and changes to routine so cutting back on how much you eat may also save you money and time on the toilet. I remember I was sick for days with some sort of virus in Thailand that I couldn’t eat but I wanted to and when I did it would just come up. I wasted more money trying to get food in me but that all ended in the bin. Eating less and drinking lots of water and eating greens will help move things along.

 

Trim Daily Expenses on food 101 when travelling

 

  1. Wherever I travelled I would eat the most food I could depending on price. If lunch was the cheapest meal of the day I’d eat something small for breakfast and dinner. Come lunch time I’d be sure to fill up. This way you stay full for longer especially if you load up on proteins and fats but limit carbohydrates. Making sure I was always hydrated also helped me from wanting to eat when all my body wanted was water to hydrate.
  2. Choose Hotels or Apartments with cooking facilities so you can buy groceries and eat a meal in the room to lower your daily expenses on food. This is something I was passionate about because it gave me the opportunity to explore different foods at the grocery store and make them myself.
  3. If heading out on a road trip always scope out the city you are visiting by going online to see if there are any coupon books you can buy to help cut your daily expenses while visiting the city or town. Many times you might get lucky and find 2 for 1 dinning out coupons or discounts on shopping. This includes travelling over the border to the USA.
  4. Depending on where you are travelling research restaurants online as most now have websites displaying the full menu with prices. You can pick what you might want to eat and know how much it will cost before you even step food in the establishment.
  5. Always bring snacks to the airport or anywhere you are travelling as you will get gauged at the cash register if you don’t. Expect to pay double or even triple what you would in the city if you don’t.
  6. Talk to the locals when you arrive and ask them where they like to eat local food and what they recommend. I did this many times and found the best joints with frugal menus were hidden off the main tourist streets. When the wife and I travelled to Niagara a short drive out of the main district 10 minutes found us cheaper food than what we would have paid if we stayed close to the hotel.
  7. If you are unable to bring snacks with you find out what your destination is popular for because usually that means the food is in abundance and cheaper to eat. I would buy tonnes of cheap bananas in India because they grow everywhere. The bananas kept me fuelled on the many road trips we went on throughout the day until the next meal.
  8. Food trucks and street vendors will almost always have cheaper food than what you’d pay for in a restaurant plus you don’t have to leave a tip. Whether you are in Canada, USA or overseas ask a local where the best outdoor food is located and what they suggest to eat. Fill up on good eats for less so you can save your money for your pricier meal of the day.
  9. Bulk shopping at the grocery store will likely be inexpensive so if you’re hotel or apartment has a kitchen think “Big” when shopping for food. Don’t buy more than you will eat as you may not be able to travel home with extra food if it’s not allowed by customs.
  10. If you’re crossing the border to do some shopping or go grocery shopping unless you plan to eat out I’d suggest eating before you go. The reason is that if you don’t plan to eat out if you get stuck in bridge traffic it may be hours before you get to eat. You may also find that if you are hungry you get suckered into restaurants by the smell of food or cheap buffet prices. Again, if you plan it go for it but if you can’t afford to eat out just get what you need and get home with snacks and bevvies in tow.

Overall, travelling should be fun but it shouldn’t break you financially. If you include travel food in your grocery budget it becomes more critical to invest time into knowing where your money will go before you leave. With proper planning you will eat good local food, cut costs and enjoy your trip no matter what mode of transportation you chose to take.

What other ways can you save on daily expenses for food when travelling?

 

February Grocery Game Challenge posts 2016

 

Join in the 2016 Grocery Game Challenge (GGC) fun and post your grocery shop in the comment section of each GGC blog post. Here are the rules to get you started and where you’ll also find a link for the updated 2016 GGC schedule. Please feel free to download, save and even print the schedule so it’s handy. Thanks to Mary for putting this together for us again this year. If you need any help please let me know.

New monthly prize: $10 President’s Choice Gift Card for Canadian residents only BUT If you want to play from outside of Canada and have PayPal and you win I will pay you $10CDN. I use a random online generator to pick the winning ballot every month.

If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up each week below for you so you don’t have to go looking for past GGC posts for the month. Alternatively, just click on the “Grocery Game Challenge” tab on the blog side-bar to see past posts.

 

Free Money Saving Tools 2016

 

I know I blast you every which way I can on this blog about my free money saving tools and that’s because I want you to take advantage of them being FREE. So many people pay for budgets and tools on the internet to help them save money and honestly you don’t need to. Even a paper and pen will do the trick.

Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

This is the budget that brought us to debt freedom back in 2013 and now I’m offering to all of you for FREE. We still use this budget every month as it helps us to see our overall financial picture.

2014 Free Money Saving ToolsDon’t pay someone for these services, I’ve done the work for you along with some help from other amazing bloggers.

You can download the FREE Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget and in large part a reason we could pay our mortgage off in 5 years, check it out!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE.

CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet. So many free resources at your fingertips.

 

Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide 2016

 

the ultimate grocery shopping guide cbbEverything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is packed into this amazing FREE grocery shopping guide that has taken over 4 years to create.

The Ultimate Grocery Shopping guide is ongoing with new informative money-saving posts added every month.

Even if you don’t live in Canada there are some amazing budget saving tips that will help put you on the path to more savings at the supermarket.

Share this guide with your friends and tell them about Canadian Budget Binder especially if they are struggling with their grocery budget.

The time is NOW to get started saving money on groceries so please enjoy the  many money-saving posts in the The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.

 

2016 Grocery Shop Results

 

Yearly grocery budget for two + 1 Toddler 2016: $2820

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $300/year or $25/month.

Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month:$235.00
  • Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $217.05
  • Total Gift Cards used to date: $50
  • Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
  • PC Points Plus Earned to date: 58570
  • Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP)to date $0
  • Shoppers Optimum: Over 700,000 points ( I will update this twice a year)

Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)

  • Snap Groupon to cash out: $0 (Cashed out $45.00)
  • Zweet to cash out : $18.25
  • Checkout51 to cash out : $7.00

 

Grocery Shop This Week

 

Food Basics

  • 1 x 2% milk 4L- $3.97
  • 2 x Homo 3.25 % Milk 4 L $4.97
  • 6 x Omega 3 Eggs Sale $2.47 each
  • 3 pack Romaine Hearts Sale $1.97
  • 2 x Philadelphia Cream Cheese double container Sale $2.97 each
  • Liberte Yogurt Sale $2.97
  • Brussel Sprouts 1lb Sale $2.88
  • Baby Spinach container $3.00

Total Out-of-Pocket: $45.49

No Frills

  • 4 x Schneiders Bacon Sale $2.97 375 g.. not a pound..sneaky~
  • 4 x Armstrong Cheese Sale $3.88 each

Total Out-of-Pocket: $27.40

Zehrs

  • 3 pack cucumbers Sale $3.00

Total Out-of-Pocket: $3.00

  • Total to spend this month $235.00-$17.95 over Jan = $217.05
  • Stockpile budget 2016 ($25.00):$25.00
  • Stockpile budget used this month: $0
  • Total coupons used this week: $0
  • Total coupons used to date: $4
  • Total in-store discounts this week:$0
  • Total in-store discounts to date: $128.10
  • Total spent this week: $75.96
  • Total spent so far this month: $149.96
  • Total over/Under spend this shop: under
  • Total over/Under spend for the month:- $n/a
  • Total left to spend for the month: $67.09
  • Total Spent To Date 2016: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $252.95+ Feb $

Weekly Overview (your final thoughts)

We stocked up on bacon, eggs and cheese for the wife while they were cheap this week. We also picked up a few vegetable for salads. We still have veg in the refrigerator as well as fruit in the freezer that our little guy is eating up with his yogurt.

 

 

Coupons and Coupon Apps 2016

 

Here are some great places you can find Canadian Coupons! These are your latest Checkout 51 offers which you can use to help save money. We’re finding less and less coupons in the stores these days. What are your thoughts? Are coupon apps taking over the paper coupons?

smart saver insert February 2016 Canadasmart saver insert February 2016 Canada

 

Grocery Game Challenge 2016 FAQ’s

 

  • Grocery Game Challenge RULES: Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible. The rules have been updated for the 2016 challenge year.
  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?: No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.
  • What is the monthly prize and who can claim it?- The monthly prize is a $10 PC Loblaws Gift Card and for our out of country friends it’s $10 CDN via Paypal if they win. As more people join I will add more money to the gift card or I will split it up and offer 2 prizes every month.
  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?: The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month but you will still get a ballot when you post your shops even if they are late but I encourage you to stay on schedule. If you choose to post monthly  or bi-weekly you will only get 1 ballot for that shop. It’s a proven fact the minute we stop doing something that is scheduled that we end up forgetting to do it altogether. Don’t let that be you! You can post your shops all month-long.
  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?: No, our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. As of 2014-2015 we no longer include such items in our grocery budget so we can see actual food numbers at the end of the year in order to plan accordingly our budget.
  • Do you stockpile food? We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any longer as we found we weren’t eating it fast enough. Stockpiling is still great and just one way to help cut your budget to save money if you do find items that you can buy in bulk at a sale price.
  • Canadian Coupons:Where can I find Canadian Coupons?: Here are your latest  Checkout 51 offers that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge. There are many great Canadian Couponing websites online that share weekly coupon match-ups so you can plan your grocery list.
  • Best Coupon Apps: Coupons are slowly fading with mobile coupon apps being the big rave these days. Just recently the popular coupon site Save.ca that mailed coupons to households has gotten involved with the addition of a new mobile Save.ca app joining forces with the many other coupon apps available. If you find an app that I don’t talk about please let me know as they are always being added and I’d like to review them.
  • What is the Best Flyer App- We use Flipp on our Iphone so if you wan to have all your flyers in one spot download Flipp from the Apple Store or get it on Google Play.
  • What is an FPC?: An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.
  • What is GGC?– The Grocery Game Challenge of course!
  • How Do I Grocery Shop?: I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do. This is why the grocery game challenge was created back in 2012 and is one of the most popular hang out spots for people who want to save money on groceries in Canada.

If you’ve just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 get ready to examine your grocery budget by learning…

  • Where you are spending money
  • How much money you are spending
  • How much money you are saving every month

If you want to learn everything I know about grocery shopping in Canada check out my Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide! It’s FREE!

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email. If I use your topic I will put your name in a draw for a prize at the end of the year.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge 2016!

-Mr.CBB

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  • If you like FREE then click this link for my FREE Excel Budget Spreadsheet and all my Free Money Saving List

 

Mr. CBB
Mr. CBB was born and raised in the United Kingdom who then moved to Canada where he is a permanent resident. He recently became a father to a very busy toddler who allows him to be a kid at heart. He bought his first house at the age of 21 after University and his second at the age of 24. Both Mr.CBB and his wife are Debt and Mortgage Free and they did it all in under 5 years using a Budget. Canadian Budget Binder is a place where he shares their financial experiences with his readers and hopes to learn about theirs. Welcome to CBB!
Mr. CBB
Mr. CBB

Comments

  1. Mary F Campbell says:

    FEBRUARY – Week #3 of 5- Feb 15-21, 2016

    2016 GROCERY BUDGET / STOCKPILE BUDGET AND US RESERVE:

    •Total Grocery Budgeted For Year: $190.00 x 12 = $2,280.00 for 2 adults

    ===========================================================================================

    REMARKS FOR THE WEEK:

    This week was all about re-stocking our meats and baking supplies. We hit some decent sales plus we used a rain check to re-stock. I am satisfied with what we got for the prices we paid. Hubby cut a whole pork loin down into 3 good-sized roasts for us…that will make lots of great meals at our house!

    We are watching for some more rain checks again this week if we can find the item “out of stock”. Eggs at Safeway are on the radar for this week. Stay tuned to see if we succeed.

    I scored a FB coupon for Thrifty Foods for $5 that’s good until Feb 29th . I don’t NEED anything this week so I am saving my coupon for now.

    ===========================================================================================

    OUR “CANADIAN” SHOPPING THIS WEEK:

    Thrifty Foods – Maple Ridge –

    2 Cauliflower @ $2.99 ea = $5.98

    Total Regular Grocery OOP: $5.98
    Total Re-Stocking Grocery OOP: $0.00

    ** Earned 0 Air Miles on this shop **
    ** USED $0.00 in Rain Check Coupons **
    ** SAVED $2.97 Loyalty Savings on this shop **

    —————————————————————–

    Save On Foods – Maple Ridge –

    1 Whole pork loin @ $1.89/lb (RAIN CHECK) = $18.96
    10 Schneider’s Olde Fashioned Ham Half (BOGO – Limit 6 Free) = $64.95
    1 Pamela’s GF Flour = $19.99
    1 Splenda Brown Sugar Blend $7.34

    Total Regular Grocery OOP: $0.00
    Total Re-Stocking Grocery OOP: $111.24

    ** Earned 111 MORE Points on this shop **
    ** SAVED $18.96 in Rain Check Coupons **
    ** SAVED $64.95 Loyalty Savings on this shop **

    —————————————————————–

    Safeway – Maple Ridge –

    1 bunch of Celery $1.99 ea

    • Grocery Budget OOP: $1.99
    Total Re-Stocking Grocery OOP: $0.00

    ** Earned 0 Air Miles on this shop **
    ** USED $0.00 in Rain Check/ Coupons **
    ** SAVED $0.00 Loyalty Savings on this shop **

    ===========================================================================================

    OUR “US RESERVE” SHOPPING THIS WEEK:

    OUR NEXT USA SHOP WILL BE LATER IN 2016.

    ===========================================================================================

    2016 Y-T-D GROCERY SAVINGS:

    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions This Year:

    Jan $36.76 + Feb $155.00 = $186.76

    •Total Coupons/Rain Checks Used This Year:

    Jan $0.00 + Feb $20.46= $20.46

    •Total Price Match Savings Used This Year:

    Jan $0.00 + Feb $0.00 = $0.00

    •Total More Points Earned This Year:

    Jan 10 + Feb 182 = 192 Points

    •Total Air Miles Earned This Year:

    Jan 6 + Feb 42 = 48 Air Miles

    •Total PC PLUS Points Earned This Year:

    Jan 1800 + Feb 3400 = 5200 Points

    •Total Optimum Points Earned This Year:

    Jan 0 + Feb 0 = 0 Points

    ===========================================================================================

    2016 Y-T-D GROCERY SPENDING:

    •Total OOP Year-To-Date:
    Jan $196.78 + Feb ($83.22 trf to reserves+$3.38+$6.99+$5.19+$14.08+$15.68+$24.94+$8.17+$3.29+ $5.98+$1.99 = $172.91) = $369.69

    •Total Year-To-Date Grocery Budget:
    Jan $190.00+ Feb $190.00 = $380.00

    •Total Over/Under on Year-To-Date Grocery Budget: $10.31 AVAILABLE

    ===========================================================================================

    2016 POINTS REDEEMED RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $0.00+Jan $4.69+ Feb $5.19= $9.88

    ===========================================================================================

    2016 US GROCERY RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $0.00+Jan $45.00+Feb $45.00= $90.00

    ===========================================================================================

    2016 RE-STOCKING RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $217.50+Jan -$49.65 + Feb ($15.00-4.97-$39.48-111.24 = -$140.69) = $27.16

    ===========================================================================================

    2016 Y-T-D HOLIDAY SEASON RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $81.51+Jan $15.00 + Feb $11.61 = $108.12

    ===========================================================================================

    2016 Y-T-D SUMMER RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $100.00+ $537.50 Trf from Borscht Fund+Jan $15.00 + Feb $11.61= $664.11

    ===========================================================================================

    • SUMMARY OF FUNDS Y-T-D:

    $ 380.00 Grocery Budget JAN-FEB

    $ 9.88 Redeemed Points to Purchase
    Groceries

    ($ 83.22) ADDITION TO: Misc Reserves
    (Re-Stocking, Xmas & Summer)

    $ 220.34 REDUCTION TO: Misc Reserves
    (Re-Stocking, Xmas & Summer)

    ($ 90.00) Trf to US Grocery Reserve

    ($ 9.88) Set in reserve to offset
    Redeemed Points

    ($ 416.81) Actual CASH SPENT

    $ 10.31 AVAILABLE Y-T-D SPENDING

    • VALUE POINTS REDEEMED Y-T-D:

    $ 4.69 Skim Milk- 3,100 MORE Pts – JAN
    $ 5.19 Whole Milk- 3,100 MORE Pts – FEB

    $ 9.88 Total $ Value of Points Redeemed

    THE VALUE will be added month to month to our Holiday Reserve for next Christmas.

    So far $380.00 has been budgeted Y-T-D for 2016 and we have recorded $183.10 of these funds as “spent” and in fact they have been “saved”:

    $ 27.16 Freezer Re-Stocking Fund
    $108.12 Holiday Season Fund
    $664.11 Summer Season Fund
    $ 90.00 US Shopping Reserve
    $ 9.88 Points Redeemed Reserve

    OUR CURRENT TOTAL UNUSED RESERVES ARE $899.27. This means the $936.51 that we carried forward from 2015 PLUS AN ADDITIONAL $183.10 that we have added in 2016, LESS $220.34 that we have drawn out for use in 2016.

    ===========================================================================================

    The valid rain checks I hold are as follows:

    Safeway:

    1 Compliments 10″ Tortillas. 720G – Rain Check for 10 Air Miles

    2 Pork Loin Roasts @ $3.88/lb – Good until April 28/16

    4 Ground Beef @ $3.88/lb – Good until April 28/16

    2 Whole Fryer Chickens @ $1.99/lb – Good until May 4/16

    12 Motts Clamato Juice 945-960 ml @ $1.00 ea – Good until May 6/16

    12 Motts Clamato Juice 945-960 ml @ $1.00 ea – Good until May 8/16

    Save On Foods:

    1 Maple Leaf Prime 8-pk Chicken Breasts @ $18 – Good until Feb 18/16

    Thrifty Foods:

    6 Island Bakery WW Bread @ $1.00 per loaf – Good until April 22/16

    6 Island Bakery WW Bread @ $1.00 per loaf – Good until April 25/16

    1 x 2-pack BC Fresh Whole Fryer Chickens @ $2.49/lb – Good until April 27/16

    1 x 2-pack BC Fresh Whole Fryer Chickens @ $2.49/lb – Good until April 27/16

    ===========================================================================================

    This week’s BREAKFAST menu plan:

    HUBBY: Earl Grey Tea with Lemon Juice + toast with peanut butter, Banana Raisin Giant Muffins, English Muffins with cinnamon spread or Cheez Whiz, Bagels with cream cheese or Rice Krispies cereal with skim milk

    MYSELF: Tetley Tea with Skim Milk & Equal + yogurt, mandarins, bananas or hard boiled eggs

    ===========================================================================================

    This week’s LUNCH menu plan:

    MON: Pork Roast Sandwiches with Apple Cinnamon Raisin Bread

    TUES: Peanut Butter Sandwiches & Giant Banana Raisin Muffin

    WED: Egg Salad Sandwiches with leftover Cream of Mushroom Soup

    THURS: Imitation Crab Wraps, coleslaw & Apple Cinnamon Raisin Bread

    FRI: Tuna Salad Sandwiches, Dill Pickle & Potato Salad

    SAT: Cheese-Red Pepper-Onion Omelettes & Toast

    SUN: Leftover Apple Bacon Tomato Soup with Corn & Cheese Biscuits

    ===========================================================================================

    This week’s DINNER menu plan:

    MON: Red Pepper and Red Lentil Soup + Spinach Salad + Pumpkin Cornbread

    TUES: Cream of Mushroom Soup + side of coleslaw

    WED: Leftover US Senate Bean Soup + Spinach Salad + Buttered Cottage Cheese Dill Bread

    THURS: Apple Bacon & Tomato Soup + Corn & Cheese Biscuits + Wedge Salad

    FRI: Leftover US Senate Bean Soup + Spinach Salad + Buttered Cottage Cheese Dill Bread

    SAT: Velveeta Cheesy Broccoli Soup + Wedge Salad

    SUN (Bonspiel Day): Crockpot Hash brown Casserole & Coleslaw

    ===========================================================================================

  2. I just received an email about Snap Groupon and the fact they are changing how they are doing their “savings”. I’m going to look more into the email and such tonight to actually see what it said. It doesn’t sound like they will give you actual cash any longer unless your were already over the $20.00 threshold.

  3. Feb 12 – 18, 2016
    Name Your Store: Halenda’s Meats (SJFM)
    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Points = 0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $22.00 (Meat)

    Human
    2 lb Peameal Bacon = $12
    5 Pork Schnitzel = $10.00

    Name Your Store: Clover Leaf Farms (SJFM)
    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Points = 0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $20.00 (Meat)

    Human
    4 pkgs Honey Garlic Pepperettes = $20.00

    Name Your Store: British Baked Goods (SJFM)
    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Points = 0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $20.50

    Human
    Steak & Mushroom Pies – 3 packages for $17.00
    Steak & Vegetables Pies – 3 packages for $17.00
    Chicken & Mushrooms Pies – 3 packages for $17.00
    Chicken & Vegetables Pies – Buy 3 packages, Receive 4th for $3.00 (Saved $3.50)

    Name Your Store: Walmart
    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Points = 0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $7.74

    Human
    2 – 450g Armstrong Marble Cheese = $7.74

    Cats
    No Shop

    Grocery Game Challenge Results
    Total Grocery Budget for the 2 Adults ($1890.00, for the pay period – $70.00)
    Total Grocery Budget for the 3 Cats ($364, for the pay period – $14.00)
    Total Grocery Budget for Stockpile ($520)
    Total Grocery Budget for the Personal Hygiene ($182)
    Total Grocery Budget for Wholesale Meat ($500.00)
    Total Grocery Budget for Canning Produce ($400.00)

    Total Human (Adults) this Week Period: $28.24
    Over/Under this week: Under
    Left for the Month: $111.76
    Total Human (Adults) to Date: $181.28

    Total Cats this Week Period: $N/A
    Over/Under this week: Over
    Left for the Month: $(19.06)
    Total Cats to Date: $61.06

    Total Stockpile this Week Period: $
    Total Stockpile to Date: $42.01
    Total Personal Hygiene this Week Period: $
    Total Personal Hygiene to Date: $46.23
    Total Wholesale Meat this Week Period: $42.00
    Total Wholesale Meat to Date: $42.00
    Total Canning Produce this Week Period: $0
    Total Canning Produce to Date: $0.00

    Total Coupons Used this Week Period: $
    Total Coupons Used To Date: $0.00

    Total Discounts/SCOP this Week Period: $3.50
    Total Discounts/SCOP to Date: $4.09

    Total Checkout 51 rebates this Week Period: $0
    Total Checkout 51 rebates to Date: $10.00

    Total Snap rebates this Week Period: $0.00
    Total Snap rebates to Date: $1.00

    Total Price Match for this Week Period: $
    Total Price Match to Date: $45.44

    Total PC Points Received this Week Period: 0
    Total PC Rewards Points Used this Week Period: 0
    Total PC Rewards To Date: 25630

    Overview: This was to be a no shop week, except for the cheese but decided to go and check out the market and bought some things that we like but don’t get much of. We took a look around the Wholesale Club as it’s been many years since I’ve been there and there are things that we could pick up and it would last us at least 6 months to a year. Those items are definitely food for day dreaming in this house. Since I shop at RCSS, I definitely noticed price differences on some individual things but there are others, where I wouldn’t have a problem shopping there for.

    • Hi Dee,
      I think the wife and I will come to the market when I’m off work for a week. When is the best day to drive up? Did you buy the bacon and schnitzel at the market or is that a business you went to? So you were only supposed to buy cheese this week haha… is the market a danger zone for your grocery budget at times? How do you try and curtail the urges to buy food at the market when you work there? Well done.. those meat pies I bet are delicious. You get ballot # 23 Mr.CBB

      • The notation of SJFM is St. Jacobs Farmer’s Market. The other name is the business at the market that I purchased the goods at. For the summer, the best day is Tuesdays (mid-June to August), check their website/FB page for details on exactly when that will be starting. We find that most of our regular customers will shift back a day once the Tuesday market opens as they don’t find it as busy. Once the summer months are in full swing, many people find that the market is very busy but there are many other things to see/do while in the area. There’s the old-fashion train, which leaves the market and goes to Elmira about 4 times per day, there’s St. Jacobs village to walk around, there’s an outlet mall across the street from the market. There’s even a wagon ride tour that leaves the market and takes you around the area to see the Mennonite farms and such.

        Now depending on the week, I probably won’t be there but that shouldn’t stop you from coming to check it out. Unlike what you have been told by other people on your FB page, we have producers and re-sellers. We need re-sellers to carry us over the winter months but we do have producers as well. Depending on the producer, they come from the region and right thru to Niagara Falls. I was going to make some cheese biscuits so if the cheese was on sale, it was to be purchased, but I didn’t make the cheese biscuits. I made garlic biscuits instead.

        Yes, the market can do much damage to your grocery budget because you see all the fresh produce or meat, especially in the summer months but like you say many times, you need to know your prices. I’ve even been telling my daughter that, especially when we went to the Wholesale Club (not far from the market). When I’m working at the market, I don’t really get a chance to peruse the market so I try and take advantage before I start or during my off season to walk around and get an idea of what’s available. Once I see what’s there, then I decide what I want and if I am willing to pay that price. I’m not very good at haggling so I tend to drop the hint that I’m a vendor and some produce vendors will drop the price or add more quantity to it because of that. This past weekend, I went to the market with the intention of purchasing some meat (ground beef, roasts, etc.) but I couldn’t stomach the prices as they were more than I was willing to spend on a per pound basis. The best part is other than the meat pies, the remaining food items was part of my meat budget, which is not part of my grocery budget.

        • I love farmer markets too. Definitely a weakness of mine, because everything is so fresh… If you know your prices and buy seasonally there can be some pretty good deals. Your farmer’s market sounds lovely.

  4. Mary F Campbell says:

    We enjoy shopping at US grocery stores that offer prepared hot and cold dishes (i.e. Whole Foods)…it’s so much cheaper than restaurant dining. We also do take-out from favorite locations such as a local deli or bakery. This saves us having to pay tips and we can build our own sandwiches the way we like them. We buy water by the gallon at Walmart and fill our own stainless steel water bottles already filled with ice cubes from the hotel. The water stays cold for hours! I also sign up for the email sales at the local grocery stores so I get their flyers and coupons. Loyalty cards from the grocery and drug stores are common method for loading the sales – no printer required. Food festivals and farmer’s markets are another economical option for dining. For example the local Greek Festival in Palm Desert is the first week of December each year and they have farmer’s markets twice a week.

    I have 2 travel budgets…one is for actual travel expenses such as airfare, hotel and car rentals. The second is for day to day expenses such as food, gasoline, entrance fees and entertainment. Splitting the funds this way helps me to keep a much better eye on whether or not we are “on budget” for the trip. Keeping my spouse aprised of where we are in the budget helps because we work together to get the most bang we can for our buck. I have been known to say that we need to cut back on the dining out so that we can cover some sort of entertainment that we want to take in i.e. going to a concert.

    • Hi Mary,
      I 100% agree with you about splitting the budget into two and we would do the same if we were travelling. Some great tips you’ve shared here for the readers. I love the idea of loading the card rather than printing coupons. I actually despise printing coupons. I also like the idea of pre-made foods at the grocery store instead of going to a restaurant. Smart idea!! Do you do research before you go travel to know as much as you can about the destination and ways to save?

      • Angela Mainse says:

        What a great idea to split the budget. I always have an idea in my head of what we have to spend and where, and just track my receipts while gone. If I physically split the budget up to start off with, I wouldn’t have to spend time tallying the receipts, it would just be already done. Thanks for the tip Mary! I don’t know why it hadn’t occurred to me before. Couldn’t have come at a better time since we are off to a weekend away for hockey soon. I’m going to split it all up before we go! For amusement parks I have set aside the entrance fee before, but splitting it all seems better. And, less work for me while there! We also love the grocery store meals, we often get pizza there cheaper than the restaurants. We love our Price Chopper card for the U.S. when we shopped there in the past where we could load the offers to it rather than print off coupons. We haven’t shopped much in the U.S. since about a year ago with the rates to buy American money so high. We may have gone once maybe twice in the last year. When the dollar was better, we were there twice a month, the advantage of living on the border for us.

  5. Penny Gunderson says:

    I have read that many people who stay at bed and breakfasts and hotel/motels with free breakfasts don’t actually eat there.What a shame, since I always fill up on hot food if there is any and fruit. I take water bottles that I refill and carry baggies of nuts, trail mix or granola bars during the day. This way I don’t end up starving hungry while out sight seeing and can choose where to stop and eat sensibly. If staying at a hotel with only a coffee maker or kettle, I have herbal tea, cup of soup mixes or instant noodle bowls, small pull tab flavored tuna cans and instant oatmeal packs for an in room snack or meal. Just remember to pack a set of disposable cutlery strong enough to rewash if necessary.
    When staying at a hotel I found if I bought a nonalcoholic drink at happy hour and sat at the bar there was often a small buffet of snacks and interesting appetizers for free. This was often more convenient for a single traveler than to try to get a table for one for a meal.
    Take advantage when meals are included in your travel. When I got the sleeper car sale (50% off last August) for train travel across Canada my meals were included and very high quality with snacks, fruit and hot drinks available all day in the observation car/bar car.

    • Angela Mainse says:

      Cross contamination for existing allergens to some people are a big reason why some don’t eat the continental breakfasts. For example, our son is severely allergic to cantaloupe, and wears an epi pen for it. Most of those set ups have cantaloupe. This means he can eat things only out of a package and only when we wash the container off if it was near the cantaloupe because of cross contamination (by patrons or preparation). That makes the rest of the fruit off limits for him because it may have been prepared on the same cutting board which could cause him serious harm or death. He would be allowed yogurt from a container, milk that is still in the container, some muffins are in plastic wrappings, that sort of thing. Many people with nut allergies have it tougher than my son does. We eat from what we bring or from a restaurant that does not serve cantaloupe or have a discussion with the server or manager. It’s not worth the savings to risk someone’s life. That is why we don’t always participate in many continental breakfasts. We love it when we find one that doesn’t serve fresh fruit other than bananas and apples. These we love!

  6. Angela Mainse says:

    Week 3 – Feb 14 – 20

    • Grocery budget to work with in January: $250
    • Total coupons used this week: $0
    • Total coupons used to date: $0
    • Total RCSS gas coupons used this week: $1.90
    • Total RCSS gas coupons used to date: $6.32
    • Total Giant Tiger Enviro bag credit this week: $0
    • Total Giant Tiger Enviro bag credit to date: $0.06
    • Total value PC Plus points redeemed this week: $0
    • Total value PC Plus points redeemed to date: $20
    • Total gift cards/certificates/gifts used this week: $0
    • Total gift cards/certificates/gifts used to date: $25
    • Total Neilsen Homescan Visa rebate cards used this week: $15
    • Total Neilsen Homescan Visa rebate cards used to date: $15
    • Total student discounts this week: $2.06
    • Total student discounts to date: $9.31
    • Total tax savings RCSS this week: $0
    • Total tax savings RCSS to date: $0
    • Total spent this week: $25.35
    • Total spent so far this month: $43.00
    • Total left to spend for the month: $100
    • Carry over: $0
    • Total in carry over jar: $0
    • Total overspent to make up in future months: $110.30
    • Total Spent To Date 2015: $460.30

    Walmart: Armstrong Cheese blocks 4 x 3.87, Saputo Cheese block 3.87, less Neilsen Homescan visa rebate card $15: Total Paid 4.35

    RCSS: Eggs 2.49 (PM), NN Orange Juice 1.67, Milk 4.27, PC Frozen blueberries 2 x 2.97 (PM), romaine hearts 1.97 (PM), bananas 1.20, English cucumbers 3 x .77 (PM), Kiwi 2 lb 1.97 (PM), Crest 4 Me toothpaste 2.79, less superbucks 1.04 and .86, less student discount 2.04, plus tax .33: Total Paid 21.00 rounded up 2 cents.

    We managed to stay within range of our target this week and gained more ground on our overspend from January. We now only have to make up just over 110.00. Considering how much we were over, I never expected to be at this point and only part way through February. Huge progress. I mean, we’ve actually only spent 43.00 this whole month. Never, ever, have we spent that little. Proud moment, but I am not going to push it too far, our goal is still the end of March to make up for the over spend.

    Sticker shock again today. Milk went up! When did that happen? Oh my, I’m so happy we got the milk at Valumart. But with all of the increases, this one caught me off guard. 3.97 the last time we paid regular price, and today 4.27! Yikes. I paid it, this time, because I had made it to the grocery store on discount day, during a storm, and we were out of milk and eggs. Oh my. Time to do research again. I need to find out which stores have increased their prices, or if any are still 3.97. So disappointed. It was the milk that put us a bit over our target, but thankfully I found everything else I wanted at RCSS and PM’d a lot.

    The cheese was a decision made with thought again. Hubby wanted me to be frivolous and use the rebate Visa on something fun rather than groceries. But, with the deal this week on the cheese, I just couldn’t bring myself to do that. I calculated everything out so that it would be easy at the cash with no rounding. I’m thinking, we had no cheese, it’s a great deal on cheese, and it really meant we got just about 4 blocks for nothing. I’ve only been part of the Neilsen Homescan since last September. We were hesitant to believe that it would be worth the effort, but it is, so far. Hubby will just have to get over the fact that we used the card for cheese, lol. I have set aside a block of cheese for our upcoming hotel stay for my son’s hockey tournament.

    The timing of this blog is interesting to me since we are working to reduce our overall eating costs while at my son’s hockey tournament. We’ve often packed things to go for us, but they tend to be more family vacation type of excursions. This is our first away tournament that we will be staying somewhere overnight. So, we’ve already started thinking food, and adding in bits over the next few weeks with the grocery budget. This week it was cheese. Next week it will be something else. I have also started a travel container of food that we will take with us from the pantry shelves which already includes: mini rice cakes, beef stick, two boxes of crackers, tea, hot chocolate and a box of cookies. The rest will come over the next couple of weeks. I’m hoping to get some granola bars, some yogurt raisins, possibly instant oatmeal, instant soup and a bag of chips. That way we can get the best prices ahead of time and not just pay what the grocery store wants that day. We also are taking our plug in tea kettle, so that will be a huge help.

    • Hey!
      I didn’t know you had the scanner. That’s great. I wonder if they will give it to me. I’ve never applied yet in Canada. Hmm. I’d love to get gift cards coming in again like I did in the UK. Ah you saw the milk increase today as well, so did we. Ah well we knew it wouldn’t last forever. You should be proud of your progress because you are doing awesome. I thought it may be a tough go for you but your winning… keep at it. When you go away for the tournament do you eat out and then just bring snacks? You’re smart bringing food because the costs of eating out kind of horrify me at times. Great deal on the cucumbers too!!! You picked up some great deals. Well done. You get ballot #24. Mr.CBB

      • Angela Mainse says:

        I was surprised the scanner came almost right away. I’m guessing that there aren’t a lot of people in our area doing it. I’ve kept up with it, despite school, the only drawback is I can’t log in skate sharpening for my son. We do that relatively frequently, but no bar code, lol!

        Regarding the milk, I have looked at Food Basics since, and the increase is there as well, so I am trying to accept that this is another hit to the staples we have to take. Rats, but I will just adjust it on my weekly grocery list since it is one of the items we buy frequently. I like to have it all calculated out and itemized before I go to the store. It is a guideline of course, since I can’t always get the special I want, but I feel better being prepared. This week, there was no deviation to the list, it was exact. I love those weeks.

        For the tournament, we plan on making sandwiches or something simple for lunch in our cooler to the rink (could just be tuna and mayo – easy to make at the hotel), breakfast may just be instant oatmeal and fruit in the room, it does not include continental breakfast, so we are planning accordingly. We don’t eat a lot of cereal, but I am also considering those individual cereals. They aren’t healthy, but convenient and cheaper than eating out. Hotel room supposedly has a mini fridge, so we will have milk in there, if not we will be bringing our electric cooler and it should work with a few ice packs in it to keep everything just cold enough. Also the room is supposed to have a coffee maker, so we can make sure we get coffee, and I have a couple McDonalds freebies if there is one nearby and my Student Price card gets us B1G1 free McCafe beverages. I will bring some grounds too because they usually only have one packet there and that’s enough for about one coffee and both of us adults drink it. I refuse to rent a microwave which the hotel offers, that just seems like a cost we can avoid. There will be some team bonding, and we anticipate that to be dinner where the team will gather and socialize since both days we have a 3 p.m. game and by the time you play and leave the rink, it’s time for dinner. We have accounted for that as our dinner plans. So, the only meals we intend to eat out will be dinner (if it’s lunch, then we will have our lunch food for dinner, lol). I plan to test out a recipe I found on pinterest to make grilled cheese with an iron in tin foil. I will give it a try at home to see if it works, then we may do grilled cheese sandwiches one meal. Could really be an easy filling breakfast with some fruit and a boiled egg (which I will bring with us). We always have a bin of food when we go away for more than one day, it used to drive my hubby bonkers when we first met, but he’s just accepted it s the way we do things now. I try to take a small cooler so that we can take what we need places. I would much rather have a room with a kitchenette, but this wasn’t offered for this tournament at the reduced rate that we got with our team taking a block of rooms. I figure with intending to bring the kettle and all of the goodies, I need to be organized in advance, so I am hoping that I don’t have to work the night before we go. It saves us a bundle to be prepared. Besides, I know our son will want to spend a lot of time at the hotel, it has a wave pool, a waterslide and a couple of water sprayers. Since he loves the water, he is super excited. This helps on saving on entertainment costs. We will be entertained already there. And, I travel with a few games, so we can always play in the hotel room. Nothing with a lot of pieces, but card games (Yahtzee, Battleship, Scrabble – card versions of the bigger games), travel scrabble for hubby and I after our son goes to bed – he loves Scrabble but in the excitement he won’t want to spend the time on it, and usually a dice game (which may be Carcasonne dice game or bowling dice). The idea is that between the food and games, it all has to fit in the plug in cooler and one bin so that it’s achievable to eat the food or play the games. Anything more is just too much. This includes the container we will wash our dishes in, dish soap, cloth and drying towel. I have a lovely large tote that I plan to use as our bin this time. I would rather try something with shoulder straps than our Rubbermaid bin that we normally use. It is an experiment, but if it doesn’t fit, we will switch back to the bin. I have estimated our food to cost between $50-110 for three days total for three of us. If we eat with the team twice at a sit down restaurant, then it will be $100 (approx. $50 each meal). If we eat sit down once and fast food once, then it will be more like $70. If it’s just one sit down meal out then we should manage $50 unless it’s at Pizza Hut or something and we can do that for $30 and then just eat what we have at the hotel. The little extra we’ve looked at is for coffee if we can’t get enough with the hotel coffee maker (or we can’t get a filter the right size for the one in the room and the grounds can’t be used). I would love $30, but I’m ready for $110. In about two weeks, I will find out!

  7. Yearly grocery budget for 4 adults 5000

    Total Out Of Pocket: $ 125.65
    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $ 500
    PC Points Plus Earned to date: 7900

    Grocery Shop This Week
    Safeway
    • 2 dozen run eggs 2 X $1.50

    • Kraft old cheddar – 4.99
    • Kraft Mozza- 4.99
    • Kraft shredded parmesan – 5.99

    • Tropicana OJ- $4
    • Newman’s own Sockarooni Pasta sauce – 3.99
    • Compliments Frozen Brussel sprouts- 3.19
    • Frozen cherries
    • Frozen McCains homestyle red skin potato wedges -2.99 – $1.50 coupon
    • Organic Tortilla chips 3.50
    • Bananas- $2.63
    • Organic Apples- 6.99
    • Organic Kale- $1.62
    • Pinapple- 3.99
    • Clemantines- 2.99
    • Romaine- 2.69
    • Celery- 1.99
    • 10 lb potatoes- 3.69
    • Organic Mushrooms
    • Pork Ribs- 21.98
    • Salmon Fillets- 7.99
    • Whole Chicken- $9.99
    • Bread Silver Hills Organic- 2 X $3.99
    • Chocolate cheesecake- $5.99 %50 off sticker

    GROCERY SHOP THIS WEEK (add any other sections you need to show expenses and savings)
    • Total coupons used this week: $1.50
    • Total coupons used to date: $14.75
    • Total in-store discounts this week: 35.26
    • Total in-store discounts to date: $201.06
    • Total spent this week: $ 125.65
    • Total spent so far this month: 361.12
    • Total over/Under spend for the month:
    • Total left to spend for the month: $ 138.88
    • Total Spent To Date 2016: (does not include pet foods, paper or personal) Jan $615.51
    • Total Airmiles this week = 27
    • Total PC Points- 7900
    Weekly Overview : The only great deal this week were the eggs. Other than that I included some “splurges”, Pork ribs were on special and I could not resist the marked down cheese cake, LOL!
    My meal planning consists of me making a list of meals based on what I have in the freezer and pantry. Then as I make the meals I cross them off the list.
    So we had : Vegetarian Tomato sauce with pasta with Garlic bread and salad, Perogies with fried onions and sour cream with Fruit salad, Roast Chicken with frozen potato wedges and ceasar salad, Mushroom frittata with hashbrowns and fruit salad, Pizza and arugala salad and fruit salad, Chicken fried rice and fruit salad. And my daughter made chocolate chip cookies mmmmm.
    So For next week I have a choice of- New Orleans Red beans and rice, Sausage and potato stir fry, Home made Mac and cheese with vegetables, Creamy pasta with sour cream, Sausage cream gravy with biscuits, Oven baked salmon, Chicken stir fry and Edamame, spaghetti, Barbecue Ribs and mash potatoes, Nachos with guacamole and salad, Chicken and kale soup with fresh buns.

    • Hi Rose,
      What does that sockarooni taste like? I’ve never tried that brand before nor have I seen it. I love your meal plan. I wish we could be this organized but we do make half and attempt together. Have you noticed the prices of the organic foods going up or down? The celery was a good price but they make up for it with the cauliflower prices. Have you noticed any price changes at the grocery store yet? we are. You get ballot #25 Mr.CBB

    • Angela Mainse says:

      Wow! Awesome price on eggs! I don’t think we could have stopped at 2 dozen. Eggs is one of our main sources of protein in our house, depending on the expiry, I could have bought six! We’ve been lucky to get ours for $2.49 a dozen which is the cheapest near us and some weeks we will buy 2 at that price depending on how much baking I plan to do. Great find!

      • I think the limit was for 2, otherwise I would have bought more and made quiches to freeze. I am trying to keep my shop at once per week, otherwise I would have picked up another 2…

  8. Yearly Grocery Budget For 2016: $8,400 (5 people)

    Points Overview:
    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $700
    Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs: $700
    Total Gift Cards used to date: $92.28
    Total Rewards Points used to date: 0
    PC Points Plus Earned to date: 9,900 + extra on M/C
    Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) to date: $1.00

    Grocery Shop This Week: February 12 – 18, 2016
     
    Superstore
    Can Black Beans 4 x $1.25 = $5.00
    Can Chickpeas 4 x $1.25 = $5.00
    Crisco Shortening $2.50
    Can Sweet Peas 3 x $1.00 = $3.00 -$1.00 SCOP
    Astro Plain Yogurt $1.99
    Broccoli $2.99
    Asparagus $3.33
    White Mushrooms $2.11
    Green Cabbage $2.32
    Skinless Boneless Chicken $14.17 ($3.99lb)
    Deli Pack Meat $3.50
    4L Milk $6.59
    Total Out-of-Pocket: $ 44.85

    Costco
    Special K Fruit Crisps $12.89
    Blackberries $3.99
    Ben’s Bread 2 x $5.49 = $10.98 (6 loaves)
    Chocolate Milk 2L $3.56
    Spinach $3.69
    3lb. Bananas $1.99
    4L Milk $6.35
    Total Out-of-Pocket: $ 43.46

    Sobeys
    Philadelphia Cream Cheese 2 x $2.49 = $4.98
    Cortland Apples 2 x 3lb. = $5.00
    Total Out-of-Pocket: $ 9.98

    Shoppers Drug Mart
    Butter 4 x $3.29 = $13.16
    Eggs $2.49
    Total Out-of-Pocket: $15.65

    Wal-Mart
    Celery Sticks $2.47
    3lb. Carrots $2.27
    Grape Tomatoes $2.47
    Radishes $1.77
    Marzetti Dip $2.97
    Milk Chocolate Raisins $3.00
    Roma Tomatoes $1.84
    Medjool Dates $14.98
    VH Soya Sauce $2.57
    Donair Sauce $2.66
    English Cucumber 3 x .77 = $2.31
    Sweet Potatoes $3.79
    Special K Cereal $3.94
    Rice Krispies $3.94
    Dentyne Cinnamon Gum $3.22
    Smuckers Jam $3.97
    Total Out-of-Pocket $15.49
    ***Used $35.58 from Gift Card from Christmas***

    Total to spend this month: $700
    Total coupons used this week: $ 0
    Total coupons used to date: $20.48
    Total in-store discounts this week: $13.48
    Total in-store discounts to date: $144.73
    Total spent this week: $129.43
    Total spent so far this month: $455.29
    Total over/Under spend this shop: UNDER $10.57
    Total over/Under spend for the month: OVER $35.29
    Total left to spend for the month: $244.71
    Total Spent To Date 2016: Jan $706.52 +

    Weekly Overview:
    I was going to use my PC Points attached to my Mastercard but when I went to pay the points system wasn’t working so I couldn’t redeem them. Maybe next week! I will be doing a lot of baking/cooking this week to help keep the budget in check for the month. Some things I will be making are chickpea truffles, waffles, molasses cookies, clam chowder, vegetable soup, vegetable lentil loaf, banana bread, black bean brownies.

    • Hi Lori-Lynn
      What did the price come up for your sweet peas! Great SCOP and good catch. What are chickpea truffles? Do you have recipe to share? Oh.. and the black bean brownies too. I love love love brownies. Check out my Pinterest page… my wife thinks I’m brownie crazy. I am. Great deal for the cucumbers. Will you be making date squares? I love those too. My recipe is on the blog. I’d have to say you did well coming out of Costco under $50 lol. Great shop this week and even though you are over for the month I think you should have no problem getting to the end of the month. You get ballot #25. MR.CBB 🙂

  9. Anne Russell says:

    The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 Weekly to February 7, 2016
    • No Frills 59 items
    • Lantic sugar $1.97
    • Plantation Sugar $2.79
    • No Name Elbow macaroni $1.69 (PC pts 100)
    • No Name Ketchup X 2 @ $2.00 (comp. with Heinz ketchup $3.33 to $3.99)
    • Aylmer Tomatoes X 4 @$1.25 (reg. $1.97) Flipp price match
    • PC macaroni white cheese X 2 @.77
    • PC Dijon Mustard $1.97 (comp. with French’s mustard @ $3.12 each)
    • PC Honey Mustard $1.97
    • No Name Potato chips X 4 @.97 (PC pts 300)
    • Barqs Root Beer 12 can case (for company) $4.99
    • Voortman Black Forest cookies @ $1.67 (reg. $4.08)
    • Maxx Cat Litter $7.99
    • Sunlight laundry 4.43l $10.97 (reg. $16.97) (PC Plus pts 2000)
    • Danone Danactive yogurt $4.97 for 8 (child’s treat)
    • Armstrong cheddar 450 gm X4 @ $3.88 each (reg. $6.77)
    • Liberte Cherry Yogurt @ $2.97, reg. $3.47
    • Gaylea butter X 2, reg. $6.49, Flipp price match $2.99
    • Philadelphia Cream Cheese reg, $4.97, Flipp price match $2.97
    • No Name perogies X 2 @ $1.77 (reg. $1.99)
    • Delissio Vintage pizza X 2 @ $4.44, reg. $8.29 (PC Plus pts 1000)
    • Blueberries @ $1.87 (reg. $3.97)
    • 4 pack sweet peppers @ $2.97 (reg $3.97)
    • 10 lb Russet potatoes @$1.87 (5 lb $2.47, 10lb $2.97 white potatoes…huh?)
    • Bananas 1.110kg @ $1.48/kg (plus PC pts 100)
    • 6 Red Delicious apples (reduced rack) $1.49
    • 4 bunches radishes (reduced rack) $1.49
    • Iceberg Lettuce $1.97 (PC Pts 150)
    • Schneiders Red Hots X 2 @ $2.27 (reg. $5.49 each)
    • Maple Leaf Bacon X 2 @ $2.97 (reg. $3.97)
    • Pinty’s Chicken $10.99 less $2 coupon, (reg. $15.99)
    • Pork Loin 3.22 kg @ $3.24 kg (reg. $6.99 kg.)
    • Stewing Beef .97 kg @ $15.49 less 30% coupon
    • Lean Ground Beef 1.38 kg @ $8.49 (Flipp price match $11.44)
    • Ciabatta Sausage buns $1.85 (reduced from $3.69)
    • Old Mill bagels X 2 @ $1.50 (reg. $2.00) reduced
    • Country Harvest sesame bagels $1.74 (reg. $3.49) reduced
    • Wonder Bread X 2 @ $2.00 (reg. $3.19)
    • PC Medium sliced cheddar $10.99 (PC pts 1100)
    • Sliced ham 1 kg $1.00 (yep, you read that right!) special buy
    • Olivieri Tortellini $5.00 (less $2.00 coupon, plus PC pts 800)
    • Crush Cream Soda, CocaCola X2 @$1.25 (reg. $1.99)
    • PC Points on (in addition to above) 17,500 for spend over $175, 2500 fresh beef, 1000 on fresh pork,
    • Instant savings $70.41
    • Flipp Price Match $17.38
    • Reduced section (meat and produce) $15.41
    • PC Points earned 26,550
    • Total Coupons Used: $4.00
    • Total Out Of Pocket: $193.45

    • Critter Cove (crickets) $6.22

    • Shoppers Drug Mart Neilsen Cream X2 $5.00 (saved $2.98)

    • Walmart
    • Reduced Bakery $2.23 reg. $3.25
    • Dempsters Bagels X 2 @ $2.50 each (Flipp PM reg $3.38)
    • Healthy Request Soup X 2 @ $1.88 (Flipp PM reg. $2.99 each) less coupon $1.50
    • Kraft Salad dressing $2.49 (Flipp PM reg. $2.99)
    • Armstrong Mozzarella cheese $3.87 (Flipp PM reg. $6.07)
    • Sub Sauce $3.97
    • Tomatoes $2.37
    • Sub buns $2.47
    • Cola 12 pk $2.99
    • Total Flipp savings: $7.57
    • Reduced bakery $1.02
    • Total Coupons Used: $1.50
    • Total Out Of Pocket: $28.02

    Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)
    • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $940.00
    • Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $981.70
    • Total Gift Cards used to date: $0
    • Total Rewards Points this week: $0
    • Total Rewards Points used to date: $185.00
    • PC Points Plus Earned this week: 26550

    2016 Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)
    • Zweet this week: $0
    • Zweet to date: $1.00
    • Checkout51 this week: $0
    • Checkout51 to date: $19.50
    • Flipp this week: $24.95
    • Flipp to date: $149.30
    • Caddle this week $1.25
    • Caddle to date: $6.30

    GROCERY SHOP THIS WEEK (add any other sections you need to show expenses and savings)
    • Returns -$3.40 (double scanned)
    • Total coupons used this week: $5.50
    • Total coupons used to date: $79.51
    • Total in-store discounts this week: $73.39
    • Total in-store discounts to date: $487.69
    • *NEW* Reduced grocery: $15.21
    • Total spent this week: $229.29
    • Total spent so far this month: $484.71
    • Total over/Under spend this shop: $5.71 under
    • Total over/Under spend for the month: $18.02 over
    • Total left to spend for the month: $451.98

    • Total Spent To Date 2016: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $1113.10 (5 week shop) + Feb $253.08+$229.29=$1595.47

    Weekly Overview (your final thoughts):

    Milk went up $1.00 this week! 25% seems a little outrageous. Also, Snap is discontinuing and moving to Groupon. I don’t use Groupon so will lose the $5.50 I have accumulated.

    Does anyone else get driven to spend a certain amount to achieve points? This week, PC Plus had points bonus for spending over $175 amounting to 10% points value. With that, I will likely redeem 50,000 points next weekend to reduce my out of pocket by $50.

    Two big shops in a row, replenishing some of the condiments that we had run out of. Also, getting side dishes and extra meat. The next week will be much lower!

    This week I added two new elements to my analysis. One, to separately track the reduced grocery to see how much I save buying from the racks. I have shopped them quite a bit, just never added it up, left it lumped into instant savings. Two, I practiced a tip I read some while ago, taking things out of the cart at the end. Sometimes, (such as finding the 1kg ham for $1.00 after visiting the deli meat section) means that I have too much of something.

    I am tracking the savings I accumulate by buying the No Name or store brands as opposed to name brands. In a round-table discussion at family dinner, everyone agrees that many things (like ketchup) don’t need to be a brand, but others (like coffee) are very different.

    This week I saved 35% off the total of products I brought home.

    • Hi Anne,
      What a great GGC write-up. I love how you compare the products. I bet this really helps with getting to know the prices too. I add up the reduced items in our GGC Post too. It’s amazing that in 2015 we saved more buying reduced then we did using coupons. I’d love if you could keep that data. It would be a great blog post for the end of year. May I ask what the crickets are for? You don’t chocolate dip them do you. 🙂 Well done. If we get a bonus with PC and we need the stuff we will go for it. Sometimes they give you a nice chunk of money back. This means we may have to combine products we may not have bought until the next week. I got the email about SNAP too. We just redeemed but no cheque has come yet. We’re still waiting. I look forward to your next shop. Brilliant layout. You get ballot 27. Mr.CBB

      • Anne Russell says:

        Thank you! The crickets are a weekly purchase for 2 bearded dragons. They also get one package of Spring Mix per week, and there is a blue tongued skink also that requires half can of organic specialty cat food with his greens. So many critters here, it’s a large chunk of my weekly budget. But it is what it is.
        I don’t necessarily buy based on points or coupons, but use them to enhance my budget. (ie. If I don’t have enough in the cart to earn a bonus, I’ll buy the stockpile items to get them. Even those items are generally on sale or price matched.) If the points and bonuses are on items I buy, and I can find a sale, I generally work them in. I only use about a third of the items they offer points bonuses on.
        My post gets long and detailed, and I include everything! Warts and all. Knowing that I’ve come so far from where I was 2 years ago and keep striving to get things lower without a mutiny on the home front.

    • Angela Mainse says:

      The gimmick the stores use to get consumers to spend more money is to offer special bonuses on the purchases if you spend a certain amount. PC Plus often offers you bonus points to spend more than you normally would, but it’s always close enough that it’s enticing for that purchase, but next thing you know that target gets put up and up each time. It gives them the sales and customers leave the store feeling like they got a deal. It can be that way with coupons. I don’t shop like that, and often I am in the minority. Many weeks I have an offer from PC Plus to spend $40 or $75 for extra points, but I leave the store buying just what I intended to buy. There has only been one time that I cashed in on that bonus and it was last month when our Valumart was closing. I had the point bonus loaded on my card, actually laughed when I loaded it, that it would be 10,000 bonus points for a purchase over $100, it was funny because this under normal circumstances would be a joke. I would have to look back to see the last time I spent $100 at the store, in one week, much less one purchase. However, the deals at Valumart were awesome that week and we couldn’t walk away. When I got to the cash, I had an idea how much we spent, but didn’t quite think we crossed that mark, but we did, and not by a lot. This was a one shot opportunity, but any other week, we let those points go by and still would have if our total came to $99. We benefit from the points we do get on the things we plan to buy, but don’t buy to get the points, it’s less expensive this way. We will also lose a few dollars on Snap too. I have never redeemed with them, frankly only redeemed once with Checkout 51. I buy what we buy and then check the apps. They won’t ever amount to much for us, PC Plus is always the big draw for us. We have switched to best prices too, even if it’s generic No Name brand. However, we do have our few things we prefer to keep to a specific brand as well. Good luck with the No Name savings.

      • Anne Russell says:

        Agreed with the points bonuses. If I don’t need it or use it, I don’t buy. I let them slide because they usually amount to only 10 cents on the dollar….so it’s not a big incentive to buy more to save a little. Do you shop at the bulk stores? I went to Bulk Barn but I have to be pretty sharp to catch when I save and when I don’t!

        • Angela Mainse says:

          I don’t shop at the bulk stores anymore. I knew someone who worked at one, and the harsh chemicals they had to use to clean the tops of the bins put me off, big time. I didn’t like the idea of heavy chemicals near the food, particularly in spray form. Also, for us, it’s tough with allergies. A friend of my son has peanut allergies, so I do my best to have things that don’t have cross contamination risk with them. Yes, we have nut products in our house, but the risk is reduced when we are using other products that come out of packages and our nut free pans and things. Just isn’t worth a cent or two of savings.

  10. Total Yearly Food Budget for one adult (combined Grocery and Stockpile Budgets): $1200.00

    Yearly Grocery Budget: $720.00
    Monthly Grocery Budget 2016: $60.00 ($15.00/wk/4wk month or $12.00/week/5wk month)
    Total Carried Over From Last Month: $4.32
    Total Spent This Month Previous To This Shop: $21.56
    Total spent this week: $11.53 (under $0.47)
    Total spent so far this month: $43.09
    Total left to spend for the month: $4.32 + ($12 – $10.29) + (12 – 11.27) + ($12 -11.53) + $24.00 = $31.23
    Total Grocery Budget Spent To Date 2016: (Jan: $75.68) (Feb: $)

    Yearly Stockpile Budget: $480.00
    Monthly Stockpile Budget 2016: $40.00
    Total carried over from last month: – $1.10
    Total spent so far this month: $9.04 + 23.79 = $32.83
    Total left to spend for the month: -$1.10 – $32.83 + $40 = $6.07
    Total Stockpile Budget used to date: Jan $21.10

    This weeks shop

    Food Basics
    $1.97 Romaine Hearts (pack of 3)
    $3.94 Astro yogurt (2 x 12 cups) ($2.97 x 2 – 2 x $1.00 coupons)
    $5.91 OOP

    Your Independent Grocer
    $1.49 Lantic sugar (2kg) (stockpile)

    Walmart
    $1.57 Carrots (3lb)
    $1.00 Mandarin tofu (420g)
    $2.57 OOP (also got a rain check for 6 Armstrong Cheese 450 g packs at $3.87 each, I’m learning Mary)

    Shoppers Drugmart
    $2.49 Eggs (1dz)
    $2.29 Nielson cottage cheese (1 x 500g)
    $5.98 PC pizza 2 x $2.99)
    $11.25 Coke (4 x 6 bottles) x ($2.49 + tax)
    $31.92 Tasters Choice coffee (8 x $3.99)
    $5.98 Breyers ice cream (2 x $2.99)
    $2.25 Lays chips
    $62.16 total cost
    $1.56 OOP (tax on taxable items) (redeemed 50,000 points – bought other non food items as well)

    Reflections on the week

    I got caught up in what I thought was an extra $ redemption promo at Shoppers over the weekend and didn’t find out till I’d already paid for everything that it was only for beauty products. It was a mistake not to return the whole lot then and there but I’d already invested a lot of time and effort into finding things I could use so decided to make the best of it. I returned some things another day so at least I didn’t have to pay anything out of pocket. I’m telling everyone this because although it was my fault for not seeing that it was a beauty event, I noticed when I looked at the flyer again that it was not as clear as it has been in the past. It only said it was a beauty event in smaller letters in a bubble off to the side. You probably all noticed it but just in case I thought I’d warn you all so you don’t make the same mistake.

    That being said, I’ve noticed since Shoppers was bought out by Loblaws it is getting more and more difficult to redeem points since they seem to not have as many good values as in the past. I don’t buy much in the way of personal care items or electronics so it is quite difficult to find anything to redeem points for anymore. Looking at what I bought there are a lot of things that I don’t strictly need, like pop, chips, and ice cream. I will use the coffee because it is good until late next year but most of the things will not help me reach my financial goals and aren’t very good for me either. Looking back I got caught in greed and trying to get as much as I could for free. Not quite the binge shopping you mentioned earlier because I planned it but similar in the addictive high I get from it. Anyone got any ideas how to deal with it better?

    Another thing I wanted to mention is that Astro Zero yogurt 12 packs have five $1.00 coupons inside the packaging. My daughter gave me the ones from her packages so I was able to get two more 12 packs for $2.00 apiece and get 10 more coupons. The coupons are good until June. I also noticed that some Nexxus hair care products at Shoppers Drug had $5.00 detachable coupons on them.

    In response to your question last week Mr. CBB, I don’t really do menu planning but I liked Rose’s idea of having lunch and supper ideas that she can draw from. So this is what my options are for this week

    Breakfasts
    I always have a cup of coffee with milk but I don’t always eat breakfast. If I do I might have these things
    Kale or broccoli omelet with hash browns: yogurt with oats/craisins/sunflower, hemp, or chia seeds: berries and cottage cheese: bacon and egg with hash browns

    Lunches and suppers (probably will just eat leftovers for lunch)
    Grilled cheese, chicken/kale soup with salad, split pea and ham soup with salad, peanut sauce seasoned fried tofu wrapped in lettuce leaves, refried bean burritos with salsa/shredded lettuce/grated cheese, hot chili tuna with rice and broccoli, kraft dinner with salad or carrot sticks, pork chops with mashed potatoes and green beans, salmon fillet with rice and salad, roast pork sandwich with carrot sticks, coffee or decaf with milk

    Snacks
    Oranges, apples, berries, frozen mango, canned pineapple, yogurt, carrot sticks, hot chocolate, leftovers, cheese, peanut butter sandwich, hummus and carrot sticks, cottage cheese

    Happy shopping everyone 🙂

    • Hi Mimsie,
      What kind of Astro yogurt do you like the best?We love the coconut..well my boy and I do. Sometimes it’s hard to find though. What do you make with mandarin tofu? Is that like an orange tofu? Great deal on the lettuce too. We stock up on the Tasters Choice instant as well when it hits $3.99. You can’t beat that price. I finally tried the hemp hearts. They taste like cous-cous to me.. chewy I suppose. They are good though. I like the draw from options as well because I find that the daily meal plan most days gets shot out the window anyways but if we have a lot of meals to pick from that would make it easier. We had something similar happen to us and we called head office at SDM and they credited our points because the event was not clear.. oh it was the date that was mixed up. Are the Astro coupons just for the packs or can you use them on the tubs? Back in 2010 there were $5.00 off Nexxus coupons that didn’t say trial on them and everyone went hell for leather using those coupons at Walmart (us included) and cashed in on the extra money because they gave the money back from the coupon. Needless to say we have lots of Nexxus shampoo and conditioner. That was the mfg fault for not specifying no trial. They along with many other companies now specify that some coupons are not to be used on trial products. It’s hard to get away from the high. We both had the coupon free high for about 2 years which ended in us having a massive stockpile that we are just starting to put a dent into this year. Not so much food as we really cut back on that because we couldn’t eat it all but health and beauty and laundry. It’s amazing how that high affects you especially when you get free. I can’t even begin to tell you how many packs of toilet paper we got free and still have loads of it. Since coupons have changed we no longer use them as much unless we need something that requires one. Sometimes it’s better to stay away from the stockpiling craze because most times you wont’t even use the items. Well done this week. You get ballot 28. Mr.CBB

  11. I love Newman’s Own Sockarooni pasta sauce, it is one of my favorites! It has everything in it. My second favorite is PC tomato, spinach and cheese. So if either of these is on sale I stock up, but neither one has been lately…..
    Fruits and veggies are always higher priced at this time of year, even non organic…

    I have always had a loosey goosey meal plan pinned to my fridge based on what is in the pantry and freezer, but I have become more deliberate in planning vegetarian meals since I joined this challenge. Meat meals are easier to thrown together at the last minute (and pricier) . By deliberately planning easy meatless meals I get more variety and keep the grocery prices lower.

  12. Our weekly budget is $125 a week making this month $500
    Superstore
    $1.44×2-$1Cx2 tortilla pringles
    $2.49×2 pm sobeys blueberries 1600P
    $1.77×2 old mill bread 600P
    .54 valentines day ice cube tray – clearance
    $10.11 total oop
    $2 total coupons
    H&W Produce
    .89 2 red delicious apples
    $2.40 jumbo sweet potato
    $3.50 butternut squash
    $6.80 total oop
    Walmart
    $3.27×12-$2.50Cx12 pm no frills maple leaf bacon 375g
    $5.97×2-fpcwub3mlproductsC ready crisp bacon
    $9.20 total oop
    $41.94 total coupons
    Sobeys
    $2×5 1lb almonds in the shell – clearance
    $2.50×4 1lb strawberries – clearance
    $1.50×4 dzn eggs
    $2.35×2 2L homo milk
    .99×6 sch ham garlic & uk sausage rings – clearance
    $6.99×2-fpcwub3mlproductsC prime chicken stuffed(ham&cheese and broccoli&cheese)
    $2.75 turtles – clearance
    $2.50×2 toffiee – clearance
    $1.05×6 gingerbread tea – clearance (bought for a friend)
    $3.99-$2GMO taco kit
    $2.19-$1.10GMO comp coconut 200g
    $1.25×4 chocolate covered sponge toffee – clearance
    $2×6-$2Cx2 sm international
    $2.99-$1.50GMO gg frozen veg
    $1.99-$1GMO green leaf lettuce
    $78.65 total oop
    $17.98 total coupons

    $104.76 weekly total oop
    $61.92 weekly total coupons
    $367.70 monthly total oop
    $109.93 monthly total coupons

    great week for stocking up in some great deals!!!!!!

    • Hi Juanita,
      Where did you get the Pringles Coupons? I remember years ago we had $1.00 off coupons from a pad and they went on sale for $1.22 at RCSS. Needless to say we were well stocked up lol. Oh look at the clearance chocolate…. that’s the time to buy it. What does GMO mean? Happy Nut Cracking lol.. great deal though. Where on earth are the bacon coupons from? We could sure use them. Awesome deals this week wow.. you killed it. You get ballot 31. MR.CBB

      • Hey Mr.CBB
        My gf in SK found the pringles coupons and sent them to me 🙂 We send envies to each other on a regular basis of coupons that we find or need.
        GMO is short for get my offers that you load your offers at sobeys directly onto your air miles card. They offer bonus air miles on asstd products and have started offering 50% off products you buy on a regular basis. I am really liking it as it really great savings.
        The chocolate was too good to pass up!!
        The bacon coupons are now being found on packages of frozen prime stuffed chicken and maple leaf ready crisp bacon. It is a booklet of over $15 in savings that also has a free itemwub3 products coupon! The rep for the company dropped off some extra coupons for us at work to put on packages (especially because people just peel them off) and for us in the dept to get some deals and try some of the products for free using the wub3 coupon.
        Lol I thought we already owned a nut crackers……but apparently not! Looks like we gotta buy one. But it will be worth it.

  13. Christine Weadick says:

    Yearly grocery budget for 4 adults and 2 cats -$7800.00
    (The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $300/year or $25/month.
    Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)
    Total Grocery Budget for the Month:$650.00
    Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $650.00
    Total Gift Cards used to date: $10
    Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
    Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
    PC Points Plus Earned to date: 23400
    Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP)to date $0
    Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)
    Zweet to cash out : $3.25($25.75)
    Checkout51 to cash out : $8.75($25.50)

    Grocery Shop This Week
    Foodland #1
    1 jug water -5.49
    1 yogurt -3.00
    2 Cheerios @2.99
    2 blocks cheese @5.99
    2 4l milk @4.88
    1 Natrel butter -3.99
    1 celery hearts -3.99
    1 pack lean ground beef -12.66
    1 bread crumbs -2.49, AM discount -1.25
    2 bagels @2.99, AM discount on 1 pack -.98
    Total OOP -$63.09, $2.23 discounts
    Foodland #2
    1 yogurt -3.00
    1 Cheerios -2.99
    1 cranberry cocktail -2.98
    3 packs pasta @2.49
    4 pasta sauce @4/5.00
    1 sandwich bags -1.78
    1 apple sauce -1.49
    2 cans soup @.99
    2 blocks cheese @5.99
    2 4l milk @4.88
    1 lb Natrel butter -3.99
    Bananas -1.52
    1 pack lean ground beef -12.38
    1 pack sausage -5.10
    1 grated Parmesan cheese -4.13
    2 W/W bread @2.99, AM discounts 1.50+ .98
    Tax -.23
    Total OOP -$79.28, 2.48 discounts
    Total to spend this month $650.00
    Stockpile budget 2016 ($25.00):$25.00
    Stockpile budget used this month: $23.75
    Total coupons used this week: $0
    Total coupons used to date: $4
    Total in-store discounts this week:$4.71
    Total in-store discounts to date: $46.74
    Total spent this week: $142.37
    Total spent so far this month: $359.99
    Total over/Under spend this shop: over
    Total over/Under spend for the month:- $n/a
    Total left to spend for the month: $290.01
    Total Spent To Date 2016: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $579.69+ Feb $
    Weekly Overview (your final thoughts) over for the week but I still have lots of wiggle room. The ground beef was a really good price so I grabbed a couple of packs and split them up for a number of meals. I’m in good shape with cheese and hubby’s Cheerios now too. The Air Miles discounts are nice, they do help. Not sure how it worked on the bagels but it’s money in my pocket so what ever. Still haven’t made it to No Frills but it’s coming…

    • Hi Christine,
      Seems like a typical week for you with some good deals. I can see your family loves cheese as much as we do. The price of beef is supposed to be going down which I hope. We’re not big beef eaters apart from mince so that’s all we really care about. I have to look at those Air Miles discounts again. Are they coupons or do you load them to your Air MILES card? You get ballot 32 Mr.CBB

      • Mary F Campbell says:

        I just had an email last week regarding a new way to get Air Miles and discounts. It’s similar to PC.Plus in that you load the discounts before you go to the store. See:

        https://getmyoffers.ca/

        My Offers is currently available at the following stores in Ontario: Sobeys, Sobeys Urban Fresh and Foodland; in Western Canada: Safeway, Sobeys and IGA; in Atlantic Canada: Sobeys, Foodland and participating Co-op stores.

      • Christine Weadick says:

        That is how I get the offers Mary, I get an email every Friday I think it is. This started back last April when Foodland and Sobey’s started taking Air Miles cards when you buy groceries. I try to keep track of the offers, same as the PC points but don’t always remember them. I do check my offers before going and try to mark items on my lists that have deals. What I like is that it’s accumulative, so if I don’t spend the required amount to get the miles that day their computer keeps track and adds that days amount in to the next time I go shopping there so it does add up for me nicely!! If I get just over ten dollars worth one day and just over ten dollars a couple of days later I still get my Air Mile for spending $20.00…

  14. Yearly grocery budget for 2 adults 2016: $5400 ($450/month)
    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $450.00 – $68.92 (Week 1) – $121.02 (Week 2) – $30.49 (this week) = $229.57 remaining
    Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $0.00
    Total Gift Cards used to date: $0.00
    Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
    Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
    PC Points Plus Earned to date: Unsure (will check when we get back to Canada)
    Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) to date $0
    Shoppers Optimum: Unsure (will check when we get back to Canada)
    Coupon Apps (I don’t really find it’s worth my time to try use the apps bcz we don’t eat processed food & the produce deals seem to be few & far between plus I can only eat certain veggies with my allergies)
    Snap Groupon to cash out: $0
    Zweet to cash out : $0
    Checkout51 to cash out : $0

    Here’s what I bought this week:

    WinCo:
    block of sharp cheddar cheese – $3.95 ($2.58/lb.)
    1 green pepper – $0.48
    1 red pepper – $0.48
    1 acorn squash – $1.47 ($0.98/lb.)
    raw sliced almonds (bulk) – $3.12 ($7.61/lb.)
    raw slivered almonds (bulk) – $1.58 ($7.91/lb.)
    raw sunflower seeds (bulk) – $1.20 ($0.84/lb.)
    whole flax seeds – $1.48 ($0.84/lb.)
    dried cranberries (bulk) – $1.73 ($2.54/lb.)
    dried raisins (bulk) – $0.45
    18 eggs – $3.55
    Lundberg basmati rice – $5.00
    Total Spent: $24.53

    Walmart:
    2 bags Tostitos chips – $5.96 ($2.98/each)
    Total Spent: $5.96

    • Hi Leona,
      You had a small shop this week but I like all the little bits n bobs you bought in bulk. Do you eat the seeds as is or do you put them on salads, cereal etc? I love Tostitos although I only get them on party days lol. You get ballot 33 Mr.CBB

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