grocery game monthly challenge

Top 5 Christmas Cookies For The Budget Baker : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #4 Nov 29-Dec 4

top 5 christmas cookies for the budget baker

Christmas Cookies Without The High Costs Start Now In Your Kitchen.

 

This time of year budget bakers are on the hunt for Christmas baking ideas that won’t cost them a fortune. Just because you have a tight budget doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy home-baked Christmas cookies.

You don’t need to be a baker to make simple Christmas cookies that you can bring to a holiday cookie-exchange or to wrap up as gifts for friends and family. I’m betting if we did a count of hands here that most of us would love to receive homemade Christmas cookies over a boring gift that doesn’t suit them. Everyone loves Christmas cookies!

Related: Holiday Baking On A Budget

Some of the best Christmas cookies that I’ve ever had before came from our family kitchen and those of our relatives. I must admit my wife’s family is quite amazing when it comes to baking and the holidays. There is never a holiday that we don’t show up at the in-laws house without our Christmas cookies.

My mother-in-law has a huge spread on the dining room table and her side table full of Christmas cookies, Christmas cakes, Panetone, Chocolates of all descriptions. Turtles comes to mind. There are also plates of mixed nuts, raisins and other goodies that we all snack on for about a week.

Yes, we gain the Holiday pounds but it’s worth it. We just work it off later.

 

Holiday Baking Planning

 

Each year we make a batch of the following budget baking Christmas cookies. Some of the most expensive ingredients when it comes to baking includes nuts, butter, chocolate and cherries. The key to keeping costs low when you are baking Christmas cookies is to budget for them in advance.

Related: Top 5 Christmas Baking Ingredients To Stock Up On Now

When you plan your Christmas cookies ahead of time you can stock up on ingredients when the prices are discounted. A pound of butter at Food Basics is $2.88 and nuts and cherries you can get at the Bulk Barn using their $3 off coupon. Peanut butter goes on sale throughout the year as does coconut so stock up!

There are many other recipes for Christmas cookies on my blog some of which were created by Nicola our CBB in-house mum baker. Today, I don’t want to talk about our Christmas cookies though. I wanted to ask the fans what they thought were some of the best Christmas cookies to make that were budget-friendly and so I went on the hunt.

There were 4 things I was looking for in each recipe for Christmas cookies:

  • Baking Tools
  • Ease of recipe
  • Costs
  • Presentation

Obviously what I could not do is taste these recipes however some of my fans have and have given them the thumbs up. Once you have a few recipes for Christmas cookies under your baking belt you can use them every year or try to find new Christmas cookies to add to the line-up.

 

Top 5 Christmas Cookies

 

raspberry-almond-shortbread-cookies-1

Raspberry Almond Shortbread Cookies from Dear Crissy

white_chocolate_peppermint_bark_sugar_cookies9

White Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Sugar Cookies from Cooking Classy

italian-biscotti-04

Italian Biscotti Dipping Cookies from The Merchant Baker

chocolate-peppermint-biscotti-cookies

Chocolate Peppermint Biscotti from Back for Seconds

ritz-crackers-chocolate-peanut-butter-cookies

Ritz Cracker with Chocolate and Peanut Butter from Meg is Well

 

Bake with Love

 

Don’t let the costs of baking hold you back from creating Christmas cookies in your kitchen. No matter what your budget is there are always ways to find cheap ingredients if you keep an eye out throughout the year.

Discussion Question:

What are some of your budget-friendly Christmas Cookies to bake?

 

November Grocery Game Challenge

 

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.

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 $10 Canadian. 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.

November Grocery Game Posts

 

Free Money Saving Tools 2016

 

You WILL want to check this out!

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 this Month: $226.62
  • Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $194.07
  • Total Gift Cards used to date: $65
  • Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
  • PC Points Plus Earned to date: 365,000
  • Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) to date $3.00
  • Shoppers Optimum: Just under 850,000 Optimum points  (I will update this twice a year)

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

  • Zweet to cash out : $18.25
  • Checkout51 to cash out : $22.00

 

Our Grocery Shop This Week

 

Zehrs

  • Large container Black Peppercorns $4.99
  • 2 x 2% Sealtest Milk $4.27
  • Small Ham $6.99
  • Bananas $1.85
  • 2 x Country Harvest Bread $2.99-50% each

Total Out-Of-Pocket $25.37

Food Basics

  • 1 x Black Diamond Cheese Bars $3.97
  • 1 x Astro Yogurt Coconut $2.99

Total Out-Of-Pocket $6.98

  • Total to spend this month : $235.00-$10.15 overage from October= $224.85
  • Stockpile budget 2016 : $25.00
  • Stockpile budget used this month: $24.03
  • Total coupons used this week: $0
  • Total coupons used to date: $15.36
  • Total in-store discounts this week:$0
  • Total in-store discounts to date: $507.24
  • Total spent this week: $32.35
  • Total spent so far this month: $227.30
  • Total over/Under spend this shop:
  • Total over/Under spend for the month: over
  • Total left to spend for the month: -$1.75
  • Total Spent To Date 2016: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $252.95 + Feb $249.46 + March $211.11 + April $248.11 + May $279.07 + June $231.96 + July $244.40 + Aug $201.30+ Sept $238.12+ October $236.77+ November $227.30

Weekly Overview (your final thoughts)

In my mind I was thinking this was a 5 week month but that was last month for us. I thought I messed up the GGC schedule again but thankfully I did not. We’re over by a bit this month which we will make up next month as we go to the relatives the last two weeks and eat their food, lol.

Thanks again to Mary C. for putting our yearly schedule together. I always appreciate the support. 🙂 Our shop this week is small because I have Chinese food to eat and the wife has enough food for herself. As for baking we are hoping to find a sale on peanut butter soon. We didn’t think or son would fancy it as much as he does so he’s eating through our stockpile.

One more month to go GGC players! Soon, another year will be under our belts- or should I say Budgets!

Mr.CBB

 

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?

If you notice I’m missing a valuable link please message me and I’ll get it added to the savings list below.

Sign up for the Nielsen Canada Home Scan Program and you can earn rewards points fast to redeem for awesome products or gift cards. I did this in the UK and loved it!!

Where can I find Canadian Coupons 2016?

Plus check out these other hidden areas online to get more coupons!!

  • Healthy Essentials Printable Coupons (Johnson and Johnson)
  • Danone Coupons Get up to $25 in coupons
  • Clorox Coupons Sign up to print coupons in the Clorox family which include Greenworks, Glad etc.
  • Kraft Canada Sign up and receive recipes and coupons by email
  • MySavings.com Printable Smart Source Coupons
  • Walmart Canada Printable Coupons
  • Proctor and Gamble PandG Sign up for printable coupons
  • Hidden Coupon Portals You Should know about – I found this over at Save a Loonie and you’ll want to sign up for notifications and check out the site so you get notified every time a hidden coupon is available from Save.ca, Brandsaver, Smart Source etc.

 

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 Know what stores accept coupons?:  If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.
  • 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 look at 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!

Please Note: Some of the links in the body of the blog post are affiliate links which means I may get paid if you buy something from Amazon. The items I’ve chosen are products we use at home or similar to.

-Mr.CBB

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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. I am totally behind and trying to catch up, December is such a busy month

    I only count the last 3 days of Nov in Nov 🙂
    So my week 5 is 28-30 Nov

    Greek yogurt 600g 2,49
    2x Tortiglioni cheese 1,48
    Cucumber 0,69
    Vegetables for soup 1,59
    Frozen mango 2,79
    Avocado 5pk. 2,49
    Salmon fillet 6,49
    2 cans tomatoes 0,45
    Broccoli 0,89
    Cherry tomatoes 1,79

    Total OOP 23,08

    Summary
    Bulk this month 30
    Spent so far w1 0,0 + w2 12,30 + w3 3,38 + w4 3,27 = 18,95
    Spent this week –

    Groceries budget this month 160
    Spent so far w1 0 30,25 + w2 27,24 + w3 27,55 + w4 22,45 = 108,16
    Spent this week 23,08
    Total spending on groceries 131,20

    Total over / under this week under
    Total over / under this month under

    Final thoughts
    Although I forgot a few days in November this little experiment went better than expected. Happy dance. I stick with the lowered budget in December too. Can’t wait to try GGC 2017!!

    • Hi Christine,
      Don’t worry it happens to the best of us every holiday season. I find around December that GGC posts come trickling in little by little. The budget still has to get done right? 🙂 What a lovely thing to read this morning. I’m happy you are happy. It’s amazing what you’ve learned about your shopping habits in such little time. You’re right a full year will be even more exhilarating. We will post the 2017 GGC as soon as it’s put together. 🙂 You get ballot #3. MR.CBB

  2. month of Nov 1-30 2016

    Name Your Store: i.e. Superstore (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $0. 06 +0.03 + $0.04= $0.13 (superbucks/PC green pts)
    Total Out Of Pocket: $26.65+ 7.92 + $5.91+ $36.32 + 8.00= $84.80
    redeemed PC pts- $30 +$30=$60
    Gift card-$5.99 +$4.01+12.48 = $22.48

    folgers instant coffee – $3.99
    4 L milk –5 @ $5.99= $29.95
    bananas- $2.25 + 2.53 (400 PC pts) = $4.78
    10 lbs potatoes 2/$5.00= $2.50
    NN stuffed chicken 2 @ $1.99= $3.98
    whole raw chickens- $7.52 + $7.36= $14.88
    spicy keilbassa 2 @ $1.49 = $2.98
    1/2 pt raspberries- $1.96
    2 kg sugar – $1.99
    flakes of ham 2 @ $0.99= $1.98
    hazelnut coffee flavour-$3.99
    sugar kiss melon- $4.99 (reduced) – $2.49
    reduced produce – 2 @ $1.49= $2.98
    pork rib chop – $3.76 (reduced) = $1.88
    cupcakes $4.49 (reduced) –$2.24
    NN coffee 8 @ $4.69 (6400 PC pts) = $37.52
    3 lbs Imperial margarine 4 @ $2.99= $11.96
    6 pkgs of boneless pork = $8.70
    naan bread 2 @ $1.69 (reduced) ( 800 PC pts ) = $1.68
    hot salsa =$0.99 (reduced )= $0.49
    bulk mushrooms- $1.04
    apple turnovers $3.99 (reduced) = $1.99
    bag variety roll = $4.99
    bonus 5000 PC pts
    pork picnic roast – $5.50
    hummus log $1.99 (reduced) – $0.99

    Name Your Store: i.e. Sobeys(Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Airmiles redeemed – $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $3.49

    900 g spaghetti pasta= $1.49
    450g elbow macaroni 2 @ $1.00 (+bonus 5 airmiles) = $2.00

    Name Your Store: i.e. Dollarama (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $5.75

    chocolate bars 10 @ 2/$1.00 = $5.00

    Name Your Store: i.e. Pharmasave – (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $0.99

    relish- $0.99

    Name Your Store: i.e. U.F.O outlet (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $10.99

    36ct bran bars- 3 @ $1.00= $3.00
    voortman cookies 2 @ 2/$2.00= $2.00
    12 ct – hot dog buns= $0.50
    loaf white bread – $0.50
    hot sauce 2 @ 2/ $2.99= $2.99
    cranberry sauce- $1.00
    ziplock bags- $1.00

    Name Your Store: i.e. Shopper’s Drug Mart (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $13.18

    doz eggs 4 @ $1.88= $7.52
    4L milk- $5.66

    Name Your Store: i.e. Stirlings Fruit/veg market (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $4.00
    Total Out Of Pocket: $10.41

    sweet potatoes= $3.15
    apple pie- $3.99
    cabbage- $1.37
    bananas- $1.90
    4 lb apples – $0.00 (with $10 purchase)

    Name Your Store: i.e. Lawton’sDrugs (Canada)
    Redeemed airmiles- $
    Total Coupons Used: $0.
    Total Out Of Pocket: $27.48+$6.20= $33.68

    16 tuna @ $0.99 =$15.94
    2 chocolate / marshmallow candy 2 @ $0.50= $1.00 (- 20% senior discount) = $0.80
    box chocolates $4.25 (- 20% senior discount ) = $3.40
    marshmallow peeps $0.84 (less 20 % senior discount )= $0.67
    baked beans – 6 @ $0.99= $5.94
    Sweat ‘n salty granola bars (comes with BOGO movie ticket ) -2 @ $2.99 (less 10% discount)= $5.38

    Name Your Store: i.e. Bulk Barn (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $3.00 +$3.00 = $6.00
    gift card- $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $10.82 + 11.42 =$22.24

    sesame honey almonds =$5.41
    corn bread mix= $3.89
    chili pwd- $0.77
    molasses=$1.09
    sultana raisins-$1.85
    seafood chowder soup mix – $8.94
    rolled oats- $1.24
    black mission figs- $2.00
    Turkish apricots – $2.24

    Name Your Store: i.e. Avery’s Farm market (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $0.70

    bananas (39c lb)= $0.71

    Name Your Store: i.e. Masstown market (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $2.00

    doz donuts $3.99 (reduced) =$2.00

    Name Your Store: i.e. Ben’s Thrift Bread store (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $3.25

    box butter tarts-$2.00
    bagels (reduced)- $1.25

    Name Your Store: i.e. Dave’s Fruit Market (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $17.07

    rotisserie chicken – $7.99
    cantaloupe- $1.99
    bananas- $1.59
    bulk mushrooms – $2.50
    red peppers- $3.00
    Name Your Store: i.e. Chops Meat Market (Canada)
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Out Of Pocket: $15.92

    ground pork – $3.89
    carvers choice bacon 2 @ $1.78 = $3.56
    5 lbs onions –$1.98
    cauliflower – $0.88
    5 lbs stew pack = $2.88
    diet coke $0.59
    Dawn cooked ham loaf 2 @ $0.98 = $1.96

    Overall for the month of November 2016

    $26.65 +$27.48 + $7.92+ $5.91 + $0.99 +$0.70 +$3.49 + $36.32 +$6.20 +$13.18 + $8.00 +10.82 +$5.75 +$10.99 + $15.92 + $17.07 +$3.25 + $2.00 + $10.41 + 11.42 = $225.47 out of pocket
    $ 0.09 +$0.04 +$3.00+ $4.00 + $3.00 = $10.13 (coupon /PC green PC pts/ star bucks)
    $5.99 +$4.01+$12.48 = $22.48 -gift cards
    $ 30.00 +$30.00 = $60.00 airmiles/ pc points redeemed to pay for the groceries
    $ PC pts (I use my PC points and Air miles to buy them- gift cards )

    Do the above for each receipt you have then copy the template below and paste it to the bottom of your shop so we can see your results.
    Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)

    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $216.67 (averages $50 week)..includes toiletries, cleaning supplies,
    Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs

    Code of Practice (SCOP) to date $3.50 (january)
    Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)

    Snap Groupon to date: $0
    Zweet to date: $0
    Cart Smart to date: $0
    Checkout51 to date: $0

    GROCERY SHOP THIS WEEK (add any other sections you need to show expenses and savings)

    Stockpile budget 2015 ($0.00): $0
    Stockpile budget used to date: $0
    Total coupons used this week: $0
    Total coupons used to date: $15.31 (Jan)+25.48 (Feb)+ $14.59 (March) +$20.14 (April) + $12.37 (May)+$14.49 (June)+ $8.41 (July) + $6.00 (Aug) +$6.77 (Sept) + $1.97 (Oct ) + $10.13 (Nov ) =$135.66
    Total in-store discounts this week: $0.00
    Total in-store discounts to date: 0.00
    Total spent this week: $0
    Total spent so far this month: $Total over/Under spend this shop: $8.80 over this month
    Total over/Under spend for the month $under spent $=$836.52 (Jan-Nov)

    Total left to spend for the month : $

    Total Spent To Date 2016: $218.21 (jan) +$118.78 (Feb) +$141.90 ( Mar)+ $150.20 (Apr) + $104.62 (May)+$76.71 (June) + $88.93(July) + $135.30 (Aug) + $186.49 (Sept) + $101.78 (Oct ) +225.47 (Nov )= $1548.39

    Weekly Overview (your final thoughts): Very pleased with all the great deals we have found this month. Spent a bit more this month , but unconcerned about that, because we are buying at great prices. I honestly can’t imagine feeding a family, and paying full price.

    • Hi Kathryn,
      How are you?
      The last line of your post is what I’ve thought about many times. I can’t imagine how people pay full price to feed a family. It has to be tough and looking for deals is a must unless they have money and don’t worry about it. We have friends whose parents make $$ and don’t care about prices at all. It’s not often since you’ve started the GGC that I’ve seen you over if at all. This is a huge success for you so far and I’m proud of you.
      Was the NN coffee the big cans? If so with the points that’s a great deal. Will you be doing some Holiday baking? I love figs. I wanted to make a cookie that is stuffed with a fig mixture but not sure if I can find a good deal.
      Have you given much thought to your 2017 Grocery Budget?
      Well done Kathryn!!
      You get ballot #11
      Mr.CBB

      • The NN coffee is just the 200 g bottles of instant coffee (our favorite). My husband is a coffee addict 🙂 so we go thru a bottle every 10 days.We went with the intention of buying 24 bottles, but they only had 8 in stock, and the store told us to help ourselves and buy it all. We ‘try’ to eat healthy, so limiting the baking…otherwise I’d eat it all and get fat. Hubby eats his figs from the bag.
        Probably keep the budget the same for 2017. Our goal is to try to stock up at the lowest price, and build a sizable pantry. We think 2017 is going to be an interesting year….aka scary.
        Merry Xmas Mr CBB

  3. Week 47 – Nov 25 – Dec 1, 2016
    Name Your Store: M&M Food Market
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Points =
    Total Out Of Pocket: $12.99

    Human
    1.3 Kg Italian Meatballs = $12.99

    Name Your Store: No Frills
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Points =
    Total Out Of Pocket: $1.58

    Human
    4 Ragu – 1.25 (PM Frescho @ $1.00) = $4.00
    4 Classico Alfredo – $3.62 (PM Frescho @ $2.00) = $8.00
    4 NN Mushrooms = $3.96
    2 – 450 g NN Marble Cheese = $9.94
    NN Cheese Slices = $3.67
    4 L – 2% Milk = $4.27
    2 – 1 Kg NN Apples = $2.00
    500 g Bologna = $4.99
    2 WW Wonder Bread – $2.27 (PM Valu-Mart @ $1.99) = $3.98

    Cats
    No Shop

    Grocery Game Challenge Results
    Total Grocery Budget for the 2 Adults ($1890.00, for the pay period – $70.00)
    Total Human (Adults) this Week Period: $57.80
    Left for the Month: ($14.57)
    Total Human (Adults) to Date: $1361.94

    Total Grocery Budget for the 3 Cats ($364, for the pay period – $14.00)
    Total Cats this Week Period: $
    Total Cats to Date: $277.86

    Total Grocery Budget for Stockpile ($520)
    Total Stockpile this Week Period: $
    Total Stockpile to Date: $204.31

    Total Grocery Budget for the Personal Hygiene ($182)
    Total Personal Hygiene this Week Period: $
    Total Personal Hygiene to Date: $234.67

    Total Grocery Budget for Meat ($500.00)
    Total Meat this Week Period: $
    Total Meat to Date: $412.61

    Total Coupons Used this Week Period: $
    Total Coupons Used To Date: $27.96

    Total Price Match for this Week Period: $11.04
    Total Price Match to Date: $288.55

    Total PC Points Received this Week Period:
    Total PC Rewards Points Used this Week Period: 30,000
    Total PC Rewards To Date: 3,148

    Overview: Yes, I’m over for the week by approximately $15.00 but I’m not worried or really concerned as I have a fair amount left within the budget to cover the rest of the calendar year. I did use my available PC Points and gift cards for today’s shopping trip. I’m back at the beginning but I’m okay with that. I was calculating today what I have left in the Food budget and realized that I have about $180.00 left after my scheduled budget has been used and I know that I wasn’t in that position just a couple of years ago which I have you (Mr. CBB) to thank for. I’ve don’t have my debt cleared but it should be within approximately 2 – 2.5 years max and that only leaves my mortgage so I’ll be sitting right “pretty” when I go back to renew for the next term.

    • Hi,
      That’s great news that you have lots of money left to cover the calendar year. That means you will win your Grocery Game Challenge for 2016. Feels good I bet. I can’t wait to read the “I’m debt free” comment from you one day. You get ballot #10. Let’s finish up the year now. Well done Dee. Mr.CBB

      • I would like it better if my bank accounts agreed with my budget. Well there’s room for improvement there. I’m working to say those words sooner than 2 years but time will only tell. We are starting to look at things to see what we should get this year or if it could last til next.

  4. Mary F Campbell says:

    NOVEMBER – Week #4 of 4- Nov 28-December 4, 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 is LOW SHOP WEEK for us. We had planned to shop a little last Saturday but it was absolutely pouring rain! I was chatting with a friend and she too cancelled her shopping that day… until the weather improves.

    We’re planning “all things Christmas” multiple get-aways to kick our holiday season into high gear for 2016… now that American Thanksgiving is behind us. Hubby will drop me off this weekend for my solo week of Christmas reading and watching movies while he returns home to work.

    We are back to using the vacation budget again but since breakfast & supper are included at the hotel, we are only paying for lunches and snacks/drinks in the room. I’ll catch you up on our spending in the December GGC #2 since week #1 is another NO SHOP WEEK with me being away. I have left lots of goodies in the house for hubby to enjoy while he has a peaceful 5 nights at home without the Christmas nag (me in case you wondered).

    I am carrying our leftover GGC cash balance into December…just in case we need it.

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

    OUR “CANADIAN” SHOPPING THIS WEEK:

    RCSS – Pitt Meadows –

    3 Light Fruit Cake– for holiday treats = $26.94
    1 Dark Fruit Cake – for holiday treats = $12.98

    1 Coleslaw $4.98

    Total OOP: $4.98
    Holiday Reserve: $39.92

    ** Earned 0 PC.Plus Points on this shop **
    ** SAVED $0.00 in Rain Check/ Coupons **
    ** SAVED $0.00 Loyalty Savings on this shop **

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

    OUR “US RESERVE” SHOPPING LAST WEEKEND:

    OUR NEXT USA SHOP WILL BE AFTER CHRISTMAS 2016…bring on those post-Christmas sales!

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

    2016 Y-T-D GROCERY SAVINGS:

    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions This Year:

    Jan $36.76 + Feb $160.96 + Mar $27.00+ Apr $117.96 +May $55.61+June $8.50+ July $46.99+ Aug $13.85+Sept $0.60+Oct $12.84+ Nov $0.00 = $481.07

    •Total Coupons/Rain Checks Used This Year:

    Jan $0.00 + Feb $20.46+ Mar $1.00 +Apr $5.23 + May $10.68 + June $0.00+ July $0.00 + Aug $0.00+ Sept $0.00 Oct $6.32+ Nov $0.00 = $43.69

    •Total Price Match Savings Used This Year:

    Jan $0.00 + Feb $0.00 + Mar $0.00 + Apr $0.00 + May $0.00 + June $0.00+ July $0.00 + Aug $0.00 + Sept $0.00 Oct $0.00+ Nov $0.00 = $0.00

    •Total More Points Earned This Year:

    Jan 10 + Feb 182 + Mar 3 +April 48 + May 96 + June 0+ July 573 + Aug 208 + Sept 11 + Oct 23 + Nov 0 = 1,154 Points

    •Total Air Miles Earned This Year:

    Jan 6 + Feb 43 +Mar 182 + April 32 + May 24 + June 3+ July 0 + Aug 0 + Sept 0 + Oct 0 + Nov 0 = 290 Air Miles

    •Total PC PLUS Points Earned This Year:

    Jan 1800 + Feb 5000 +Mar 5200= April 3,100 + May 0 + June 2,600+ July 0 + Aug 6,600 + Sept 0 + Oct 0 + Nov 1400 = 25,700 Points

    •Total Optimum Points Earned This Year:

    Jan 0 + Feb 0 +Mar 0 + April 0 + May 0 + June 40+ July 0 + Aug 40 + Sept 20 + Oct 31 + Nov 0 = 131 Points

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

    2016 Y-T-D GROCERY SPENDING:

    •Total OOP Year-To-Date:
    Jan $196.78 + Feb $193.74 + Mar $182.77 + April $255.43 + May $143.05 +June $182.79 +July $188.72+ Aug $171.07+ Sept $195.65 + Oct $190.00+ Nov (Trf to US $100 + Trf to R-Stocking $15+$22.23+$22.84+$13.50+$4.98 = $178.55) = $2,079.55

    •Total Year-To-Date Grocery Budget:
    Jan $190.00+ Feb $190.00 + Mar $190.00 + April $190.00 +May $190.00 + June $190.00+July $190.00+Aug $190.00 +Sept $190.00 + Oct $190.00+ Nov $190.00= $2,090.00

    •Total Over/Under on Year-To-Date Grocery Budget: $10.45 AVAILABLE << Woohoo!

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

    2016 POINTS REDEEMED RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $0.00+Jan $4.69+ Feb $5.19+ Mar $0.00+ Apr $0.00 + May $4.69 + June $0.00+ July $0.00 + Aug $0.00+Sept $0.00 + Oct $0.00+Nov $0.00= $14.57

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

    2016 US GROCERY RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $0.00+Jan $45.00+Feb $45.00+ Mar -$59.58+ Apr $45.00+ May -$22.79 + June -$48.42 + July $45.00 + Aug $45.00+Sept $112.62 + Oct $62.37 +Nov ($100.00-56.26 = $43.74)= $312.94

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

    2016 RE-STOCKING RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $217.50+Jan -$49.65 + Feb -$140.69 + Mar $25.48 + Apr +
    -$5.29+May -$9.70 +June $15.00+July -$41.81 + Aug $17.93+Sept $15.00 + Oct $30.00+Nov $15.00= $108.17

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

    2016 Y-T-D HOLIDAY SEASON RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $81.51+Jan $15.00 + Feb $11.61 +$15.00+ Apr $15.00 +May $20.00 + June $15.00+ July $15.00+ Aug $15.00+Sept $15.00 +
    Oct ($-15.19-$35.97 = -$51.16)+ Nov $-39.92= $127.04 + $140 worth of RCSS POINTS

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

    2016 Y-T-D SUMMER RESERVE:

    2015 Fwd $100.00+ $537.50 Trf from Borscht Fund+Jan $15.00 + Feb $11.61+ Mar $0.00+Apr $15.00 + May -$51.21+ June $3.23 +July $7.62 +Aug (15.00-30.21=-$15.21)+ Sept $15.00+Oct $0.00 + Nov $0.00= $638.54

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

    • SUMMARY OF FUNDS Y-T-D:

    $ 2,090.00 Grocery Budget JAN-NOV

    ($ 1,124.15) TO VARIOUS RESERVES

    $ 819.48 FROM VARIOUS RESERVES

    ($ 1,774.88) Actual CASH SPENT

    $ 10.45 AVAILABLE Y-T-D GGC SPENDING NOT INCL RESERVES

    • RESERVES Y-T-D:

    $ 108.17 Freezer Re-Stocking Fund
    $ 127.04 Holiday Season Fund + $130 PC Plus Avail.
    $ 638.54 Summer Season Fund
    $ 312.94 US Shopping Reserve
    $ 14.57 Points Redeemed Reserve

    OUR CURRENT TOTAL UNUSED RESERVES ARE $1,201.26. This means the $936.51 that we carried forward from 2015 PLUS AN ADDITIONAL $1,124.15 that we have added in 2016, LESS $859.40 that we have drawn out for use in 2016.

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

    The valid rain checks I hold are as follows:

    None!

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

    This week’s BREAKFAST menu plan:

    HUBBY: Earl Grey Tea with Lemon Juice + Bagels/English Muffins with fat free cream cheese spread, peanut butter or Cheez Whiz, toaster waffles, hot cross buns OR Rice Krispies cereal with skim milk

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

    ** Saturday and Sunday we’ll have hot breakfasts included at the hotel **

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

    This week’s LUNCH menu plan:

    MON: Chicken Salad Sandwiches with celery stuffed with Cheez Whiz for hubby/ Chicken Salad, 3-Bean Salad, cherry tomatoes & celery sticks for me

    TUES: Peanut Butter Sandwiches with Macaroni salad, cheese slices & summer sausage + Holiday Rice Krispie square for hubby / Apple-Red Onion-Celery Salad with Poppyseed Dressing for me

    WED: Ham Salad Sandwiches, Potato Salad & Nature's Valley Peanut Granola Bars for hubby / Chicken Salad Stuffed Celery Sticks, 3-Bean Salad & cherry tomatoes for me

    THURS: Turkey Sandwiches, Dill Pickle & a Glazed Donut for hubby / Thai Chili tuna stuffed celery sticks for me

    FRI: Tuna Salad Sandwiches with Assorted Raw Veggies & Ranch Dip for hubby / Beef Vegetable Soup for me

    SAT: Red Lobster in Lynnwood, WA

    SUN: Take Out from Goldberg's Deli and hubby stops on the way home

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

    This week’s DINNER menu plan:

    MON: Raw Veggies & Dip, Pepper Jack Cheese, Summer & Garlic Sausage, pickles/olives & croissants

    TUES: Habitant Pea Soup

    WED: Easy Pumpkin Waffles

    THURS: Mamma's Mac and Cheese with coleslaw (lots of leftovers for hubby next week)

    FRI: Ivar’s in Everett, WA

    SAT: Included at the hotel

    SUN: Included at the hotel

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

    • Hi Mary,
      Was that the first time you tried Mamam’s Mac n Cheese? What was it like? I love the sandwich and mixed vegetable lunches you have. Come winter I like soup and sandwiches quite a bit myself. I take it you like the light fruit cake over the dark? I like them both but haven’t had any for years. I think the last time I had fruit cake was in 2005 when my wife (then girlfriend) was visiting and mum made one for her since she loved it so much. Well here’s to our final month of grocery shopping for 2016. Time to bring it all home. 🙂 You get ballot #9. Mr. CBB

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