The Grocery Game Challenge #5 Jan 28-Feb 3~Will You Target Your Budget

Grocery Basket

This is the last shop for January and I’m happy to say that we beat our budget for the month. I wasn’t sure if we were going to make it especially since we’ve noticed price increases of grocery store products since the beginning of 2013.  I find if we can time the flyer specials we are able to get products we need similar to last weeks 10 lbs of potatoes for $0.95 for a great price. Another thing we noticed is that coupons aren’t like they used to be. We’ve seen a dramatic change in wording and the amount of coupon savings from the manufacturer go down over the last few years and this year proves no exception thus far.

Gone are the days where we would get products for free or near free, granted on the very odd occasion that still happens. Really, there’s nothing to complain about because no one has to give us anything.  For the most part they are holding out their hands waving deals and discounts in our faces just so we shop with them and not the competitor.

Zellers was a great store to use coupons at and find deals, at least for us. Since they have closed up shop we are left with Wal-Mart which we rarely shop at due to driving distance or Shoppers Drug Mart (SDM) where the prices are higher than the competitor at times. You really have to pick your grocery budget battles. The only occasions it’s feasible to shop SDM is when you match sales with coupons to build your points during optimum points events. Looking back,  in 2012 we did “zero” redemptions compared to 2011 where we redeemed our optimum points for 4 mega redemptions at max value. It was only bound to happen as coupons are not valued as high as they once were, wages are not keeping in line with inflation coupled with price rises on products.

Don’t get me wrong there are still savings to be had, in 2012 we racked up over 100k in points but that’s simply from bonus coupons mailed to us and the odd 20x the points events. It’s still one of the most lucrative rewards programs around for Canadians. We typically go in to get milk, sugar, eggs, cream and paper towel when they are on offer to help us save money in our grocery budget, but that’s about all. So you still can maximize your optimum points, it’s just up to you how good a deal you think you are getting compared to knowing the prices with competing shops. Lately there has been a rash of optimum points coupons coming in the mail and now I think I know why, and it’s not because they want to give us a big kiss of appreciation, they don’t want us to leave.

Many Canadians are looking forward to the huge US discount shop Target arriving this year in local communities. The anticipation of what’s in store and hopes that they prove to be a big hit with flyer specials, price and discounts are the topic of conversation. Steve Zussino, president at Grocery Alerts Canada an online coupon and deals community did a write-up on his website about the Target loyalty rewards program.

The REDcard will be available starting in February 2013 according to the Globe and Mail report Steve references in his post. The Target REDcard is said to give consumers a whopping 5% flat discount on almost everything in the store if they use it with the Target debit or Credit card. Heck, I’m not complaining I’ll take what I can get and that’s mighty generous to me. That’s certainly going to light a fire under the chairs of other retailers who have programs that reward approx 1-2 % but there’s nothing better than a bit of healthy competition. Target sounds like they are coming in like thunder and are telling consumers they are “the one” especially if you are looking to save some money in the budget. Move over Canada there’s a new shop coming to town, and we’re all waiting to see how they stack up to the competition.

I agree that retailers will have to sort out something new and exciting for consumers as they will get bored with the old and want something else to entice them to spend their money. With the recent addition of Checkout51 offering consumers cash back on purchases made that are in their line-up of products we are already seeing how saving money is going to shape the future. I do agree with Ms. Halvinka in the article who says, “carrying yet another piece of plastic for their wallet will be a drawback”. With consumer debt at an all time high for Canadians they simply don’t want more credit at their disposal, then again 5% discount might just be like striking gold in the eye of the beholder. Will you checkout Target when it comes to your community and how does 5% off your purchase sound to you?

Coupons Found This Week
Coupons Canada January 2013
Coupons Canada January 2013
Our Grocery Shop This Week
Shoppers Drug Mart
  • Neilson Milk 4 Litres  Sale $3.99

Total Out of Pocket: $3.99

Our Grocery Game Challenge Results 
Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year : $2819.38
  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with one no shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $0
  • Total Discounts this Week: $0
  • Total Checkout 51 rebates this Week: $0 Don’t Use this service
  • Total Checkout 51 rebates this Month: $0 Don’t Use this service
  • Total Colleague Discounts (CD) this Week: $0 I wish I had a discount
  • Total Colleague Discounts (CD) this Month:$0 see above 
  • Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Stockpile Budget: $20.00 Used: $0 nothing left in it for the month it’s spent.
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $36.23
  • Total Spent This Week:$3.99
  • Total Spent So Far for (January): $40.11+89.29+31.46+$42.10+$3.99=$206.95
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: $36.23
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month of  (January): $ 32.04 under
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $28.05
  • Total Coupons Used This Month : $17.89+19.50+37.10+5.00=$79.49
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month : $ n/a We don’t carry over + only –
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: $206.95

Weekly Overview: Not a bad month we came under budget which left I spending just over $200 for the month plus our $20 stockpile budget which we used. I’m hoping in February we can pull off the same type of month as we are still pretty stocked up with meats and veg in the freezer. 

FAQ’s- Grocery Game Challenge RULES…..

  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?

No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have a few players from around the world.

  • 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. You can post your shops all month-long.

  • Does Your Grocery Budget Include Health and Beauty and Laundry?

Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be effected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.

Here are your latest Coupon Match-ups  of the week including Checkout 51 from 25 Newspaper Inserts around Canada compliments of Save Big Live Better.>>> Check out the awesome NEW Website design at SBLB…. It's Not About How Much Money You Make It's How You Spend It

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  1. Our household consists of 2 adults, our weekly grocery budget is $100:

    Giant Tiger
    Celery $1.47
    Mango 0.97
    Total: $2.44

    Minute Maid Berry Punch 2 @ .79
    Apple Cider Vinegar – Organic 3.99
    Astro Yogurt Drink 1.09
    Black Diamond Cheese 5.49
    Chickpea Dip 1.29
    Green Works Dishsoap 1.99
    Tzatziki 3.49
    Green Works Cleaner 1.99
    Kraft BBQ Sauce 1.00
    Kraft Italian Salad Dressing 2.5
    2% Milk 3.19
    NN Ketchup 2.39
    Worch. Sauce 3.29
    Oatmeal Crisp Cereal 4.44
    Chicken Broth 2 @1.99
    Bulk Cashews 2.86
    NN Chicken Breats 10.99
    Shaved Pork 2.23
    Wh. Mushrooms 2.00
    3lb Onion 2.5
    Green Pepper (3) 1.5
    Roma Tomato 0.48
    Tax .66
    Total: 64.92

    11oz Spinach 2.99
    Minute Rice 7.99 less $2 discount 5.99
    HoneyCrisp Apples 10lbs 9.99
    Hazelnut Vanilla Coffee 12.59
    Quinoa 9.49
    Crackers (6 boxes) 2.97
    Total: $44.02

    Gouda Cheese 4.49
    Eggs 3.29
    Total: $7.88

    No coupons were used this week.
    Total discounts $2
    Total spent: $119.16
    Overspent by $19.16 need to work harder at getting the groceries back within budget.

    1. Hi Pam!!
      What is chickpea dip? hummus? I want to learn to make my own taziki we both love the stuff. Onions were a bit pricey but you did pretty darn good with your shopping, I’m impressed. How big of a bag is the quinoa at Costco? I want to try it. Costco is torture if I ever go in as I want to buy so much. How do you control yourself so well lol. Do you order coupons on the web? There are egg coupons on websaver.. or there were last week for $1.00 off. Don’t forget to add your summary at the end so we can all watch your totals…. you can find the template in the Grocery game rules as well!! Cheers Pam you get ballot #4 Keep up the great work.

      1. Mr. CBB the chickpea dip is a just mashed chickpeas and I add a bit of olive oil and garlic to make hummus. The brand is Clic and it is a product of Lebanon. It is much cheaper than buying the hummus already prepared and the product is smoother than just buying a can of chickpeas and mashing them myself.

        I have a recipe for tzatziki but I haven’t made it yet.

        I’m pretty sure the quinoa is a 3lb bag at Costco.
        I do fine on my own at Costco it is when hubby is with me that we run into a problem. 🙂
        I don’t allow myself to wander up and down the isles, I only get what I have on my list. We love the French Vanilla Coffee beans and I know the quinoa is a good price and the honeycrisp apples are cheaper there than anywhere else in town and they are the only fruit hubby eats. I also check out the prices on cereal because they often have the Oatmeal Crisp or Honey Bunches of Oats on sale and those are the two that hubby prefers.

        I do order coupons online and I’ve ordered the egg coupon. I normally try to buy eggs at Shoppers since they are cheaper there, but unfortunately I didn’t plan well and it would have meant driving out of my way to get the eggs (which I needed for dinner that evening) so I paid full price at Sobeys. 🙁

        I’ve also started a price book so that I know which store has the best regular price on everyday items that normally don’t have coupons. For example Superstore has 2 litre 2% milk for 3.19 it is 3.29 at Sobeys. I do need to check the local convenience store since they advertise that they have better prices on milk and I know the cheapest place in town to get bananas is Irving Gas Bar, strange I know but they are often 10 or 15 cents a pound less than Superstore.

        1. Oh so blame it on the man then at Costco lol. I agree when we start walking up and down the aisles that’s where the damage can happen in any store. I”m going to look into the quinoa and see if we can get some as I really want to try it. That’s great you are starting a price book that would be a great tool that I would love to shar on CBB one day for the fans although there are so many products out there and prices change so much. We buy the chickpeas dry, soak them, boil them and then put them in the processor with the hummus ingredients and it’s smooth and silky and so good. The recipe is on the blog… Cheers Pam

  2. Grocery Game Challenge
    Food Basics
    ⦁ Tropicana 4.99
    ⦁ Milk 4.38
    ⦁ Applesauce packages x 4 @ 1.99 each = 7.96
    ⦁ Brown sugar 2.19
    ⦁ Avacado 0.99
    ⦁ Strawberries 1.00
    ⦁ Reduced produce 1.00
    ⦁ Meat Slices 3.99
    ⦁ Salad dressing 1.99
    ⦁ Onion 1.47
    ⦁ Bananas 0.98
    ⦁ Romaine lettuce 2.47
    Total Coupons Used: $ 0
    Total Out of Pocket: $ 33.41 (incl. tax)

    ⦁ Cheese block x 3 @ 4.44 each = 13.32
    ⦁ Margarine 3.27
    ⦁ Orange Juice 3.47
    ⦁ Flour 5.38
    ⦁ Bread x 2 @ 1.98 each = 3.96 – coupon for 2.00
    ⦁ Meatballs 4.98
    ⦁ Celery 1.28
    ⦁ Clementines 4.77
    ⦁ Grapes 5.06
    ⦁ Limes 0.75
    Total Coupons Used: $ 2.00
    Total Out of Pocket: $ 44.24 (incl. tax)

    Food Basics
    ⦁ Kidney beans x 3 = 2.87
    Total Coupons Used: $ 0
    Total Out of Pocket:$ 2.87

    ⦁ Orange juice 1.99
    ⦁ Chocolate chips 2.89
    ⦁ Ground beef 14.48
    ⦁ Cucumber 1.99
    ⦁ Lime 0.50
    ⦁ Mushrooms 0.48
    ⦁ Grape tomatoes 2.00
    Total Coupons Used: $ 0
    Total Out of Pocket: $ 24.44

    Weekly Grocery Game Challenge Results
    •Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year: $ 5520
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $ 460
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $ 2.00
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $ 0
    •Total Spent This Week: $ 104.96
    •Total Spent So Far for February: $ 104.96
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop:
    •Total Over/Under spend for the month of February:
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: $ 355.04
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $ 2.00
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : $
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $441.38+104.96=546.34
    •Weekly Overview: The five weeks in Januray threw me off – I never know what to do with those months. I like the idea of a no-shop week! OR Shoppers is having a redemption weekend this weekend, so I could take advantage of that for some of our needs and that would help with staying in the budget this week.

    1. Hi Anna,
      I presume this is your first shop for Feb? I do realize the weeks overlapped but that’s ok just try to get your shop in on the last Sunday of the Post so watch the dates. My first post for Feb Grocery was posted this week “What Foods Not To Eat, Organic, Gardening.
      Good job with the cheese I hope we can find some this month as well because we are running low. YOu have a nice budget for the month with plenty left to spend. What do you use your lime for? We love limes and buy them often but they aren’t always cheap especially if you want a juicy one. I’m impressed with your shop,you seem like you enjoy lots of veg and fruits and that’s good for you. We do the no shop week or 2 sometimes in those months with 5 weeks. If you do a no shop week you will feel awesome that a week went by and you spent nothing, try it sometime! You get ballot 1! Cheers mate

  3. Well had a very easy week over here….worked a lot and had a lot of family events happening so not much time to be out at the stores…

    Shoppers drug mart

    Cheesestrings 2.99
    Homo milk 5.49


    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: 135 a week
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $0
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $ 0
    •Total Spent This Week:$8.48
    •Total Spent So Far for (January): 493.84
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop: under by 126.52
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: $46.16

    So i made it under budget again this month which was very helpful with having to buy my sticker for my license and two dog tags……Thinking if i can make it one more month under budget I will lower the budget again 🙂

    1. Hey Jo!
      Well I must admit there are quite a few of you bragging about how you went under budget this month and I’m SUPER impressed with all of you. Keep up the good work.. and you can celebrate with us at the end of the year … we’ll have a virtual GG party!!! You get ballot #58.. Mr.CBB

  4. Mr CBB, I tend to use the evaporated milk in combination with our regular skim milk when I am baking or making creamed soups. I tend not to use half n half or full fat cream…just way too rice for our liking. This top up will probably last us for the rest of the year. 🙂

  5. Hey Mr CBB!
    Once again a no spend week here. Woohoo! BF comes back on Monday so I’ll shop then, there was enough food for me last week and still plenty in the freezer. I had lots of crepes and the best homemade pizza in a long time! goat cheese, basil, tomato and jalapeño. forgot the garlic.
    Still a February shopping virgin 🙂
    My guest post is ready btw, I am sending it over!

    1. What do you put on your crepes? I love crepes and they are what I am used to, lemon I like. In Canada they make a pancake which is fluffy and similar to a flat cake and put maple syrup on them. It’s good but I can’t eat many.

      1. I do salty ones for breakfast, ham or bacon, cheese, an egg, onion, garlic, tomato, basil… variations around that. when you flip the crepe you lower the gas to a minimum and crack the egg first to give it time to cook without burning the crepe. You should also precook the bacon separately. Sweet ones I like lemon and sugar, butter and sugar, Nutella, for a healther option you can try berries or any canned fruit, cooked apple, bananas…

  6. Finally I can post the shops for the week, including Sobey’s last Monday. It was my big shop for the week…. I came very close to coming in under budget for the week, but there will be carry over to next month.
    Foodland, Jan 17
    6 Bananas(reduced)-1.26
    1 tub margerine-1.79
    1 10 lb bag potatoes-1.97
    2 VH sweet and sour sauce@ 2.88- 5.76, $2.00 WUB2 coupon
    1 bag frozen beans-2.99
    1 raisin bread- 3.29
    1 12double rolls TP-4.44
    2 4l bags milk @ 4.79- 9.58
    1 jug water- 5.49
    1 pack smokes-9.69
    Total-$46.10, coupons- 2.00

    Sobey’s Jan 28
    1 Triscuits- 1.99
    2 Mennon deoderant@ 2/5.00- 5.00, 2.00 WUB2 coupon
    1 raisin bread-2.99
    2 cider mix@ 3.49- 6.98
    2 bagels @3.89- 7.78
    2 4l bags Natrel milk @ 3.99- 7.98
    1 butter- 3.99
    1 taco kit-3.99( 2.00 Checkout 51)
    3 cereal(various kinds)@ 3.99- 11.97
    1 case rootbeer- 3.99- 1.00
    2 cases gingerale@ 3.99-1.00 each, 2- $2.00 coupons
    1 instant coffee-4.79
    2 jars honey @4.88- 9.76
    1 pack frozen fish-4.99, 1.00 coupon
    1 Downie-7.99
    candy asst-1.04, 3.27, .89, 2.19
    tax- 4.27
    Total- $94.33, $10.00 in coupon

    Foodland Jan 30
    1 jug water-5.49
    1 pack smokes- 9.69
    tax- 1.26
    Total $16.44

    Jackson’s Jan 31
    2 hot chocolate mix @ 2/5.00-5.00
    Total- $5.00

    Total Grocery Budget for month(5 weeks) $750.00
    Total Budget for Year- $7800.00
    Total Spent this week-$161.87
    Total for month-117.53+219.92+135.46+183.30+161.87=$818.08
    Over/Under for Week- over $11.87
    Over/Under for Month- over-$68.08
    Left for Month-$0.00
    Total Coupons for Month- 1.25+29.92+8.99+7.00+12.00= $58.70
    Total Carryover to next Month- $68.08
    Total Year to Date- $818.08
    Total Rebates- $2.00, Checkout 51

    I went over again and for the month. This will be carried over to next month. Mind you there was some stockpiling…. the cereal was a nice price, the hot chocolate at the drugstore, the bananas were clearance so I have them for making banana bread, peeled, bagged and in the freezer. I get extra points at Sobey’s for going over $70.00 and for the 2 packs of bagels. Currently I have enough points there for $25.00 off on groceries so I’ll hold them until I need to redeem them, be nice if I could hole onto those points until the holidays. Sure would make for a cheap Christmas dinner!!! I have a couple of shops already for next week, so I’m good for the birthday late in the week. Got ice cream on sale and the birthday boy picked out his flavour… Hopefully there has been enough stockpiling that I can make up funds and balance by the end of Feb.

    1. Hi Christine the raisin bread lady lol…. I should make it one day just for you!!
      Seems like almost all of us except for a couple did some stockpiling this month. If you ask the produce guy they might even have tonnes of bananas in the back they will sell you for dead cheap to make your banana bread. Never know if you don’t ask. Never know maybe you can hold your points until the holidays. You and your icecream as well, gee I’m starting to know what you all like to buy, is that a bad thing lol…Well lets see how well you make out next month with your carry over… can you beat it? You get ballot #57 WOW can you believe 57 grocery game posts this month WOOHOOO… So happy and I hope we can keep spreading the word!!! Save $$$$$…. Cheers mate

      1. Look at it this way… have a pretty good idea what we buy and with the What’s for Dinner you know what we make with it all. Now you know where to pop in for dinner if you happen to be in the area…..What more do you need to know!!!! Wow indeed!!!! 57 posts!!!!! Lots of dinner choices!!! Lol!!!

        1. That’s true I’m sure I have your address around here somewhere!! I know super impressed Christine, we just need to keep motivating the fans because sometimes hearing it from the horses mouth is not enough. Thanks for all you do mate.

  7. our weekly budget is $100 and we sure went over it this week but we were able to stock up on a few things and I was happy to do that. (it will be a novel this week)
    $3.67 chicken breasts
    $2.26 chicken breasts
    $2.87 chicken breasts
    $3.10 chicken breasts
    $2.87 chicken breasts these are all maple leaf prime santa fe & dijon flavoured & on clearance
    $4.46 beef jerky
    $2.64 hot&spicy chicken slices
    $2.39 bologna slices
    .55×4 pop
    $1×4 dove soap bar
    $1×2 maragrine
    $1×3-$1C soup mix
    $1×3-$1C sidekicks
    $2.49×2-$2C flatbreads
    $1.21 mushrooms
    $3.13 random sliced meats
    $3.78 red/orange peppers
    $2.96 yellow peppers
    .99 x3 oliveri sauces-clearance
    $2 sandwich
    $59.45 total oop
    $4 total coupons
    $1.99×4-$4C windex cleaners
    $2.50×4 ice cream (2 are for my girls bday cake)
    $5.99 12pk cream of mushroom soup
    $7.99-$5C tylenol muscle & body
    $4.06 ground beef
    $3.99 ground beef
    $3.27 ground beef this was an awesome sale & will be at least 5 meals for us
    $34.81 total oop
    $9 total coupons
    $2.99-$2C garnier body lotion
    $1.99×2-$1C dzn eggs
    $1.99×2 bistros
    $3.97-.75C shredded cheese
    $1.97 uncle bens rice-clearance (forgot my $1 coupon I had in my wallet but is was on for $7 of
    $4.81 4L milk
    $2.99-.75C shredded cheese
    $20.34 total oop
    $4.50 total coupons
    $7.38 2 pk 1.5L ketchup
    $3.47 cheese buns
    .96 blackberries
    $1.37 ripple chips
    $13.25 total oop
    $19.99-$2C 3L evoo
    $1×6-$2.25C hunts spagetti sauce
    $4.99 24pk mr.noodles
    $28.63 total oop
    $4.25 total coupons
    $5 frozen chicken strips
    $2.47 3lb carrots
    $1.97 3lbs onions
    $1×6 asstd michelinas
    $1.97 croutons
    $3.26×3-fpcs natrel babo – donations
    $16.89 total oop
    $9.78 total coupons
    Bulk Barn
    .25 thyme
    $1.90 garlic powder
    $2.37 taco seasoning
    $1.09 garlic minced
    .49 oregano
    $1.39 chili powder
    .22 bay leaves
    $2.35 cajun seasoning
    $1.28 cream of tartar
    .57 italian seasoning
    $2.61 nutmeg
    .91 poultry seasoning
    .42 pizza seasoning
    .41 crushed chillies
    $13.26 total oop
    $3 total coupons

    $186.63 total weekly oop
    $34.53 total weekly coupons

    $561.64 total monthly oop
    $205.54 total monthly coupons/discounts
    $61.64 over budget for Jan
    Looking back on the month we really stocked up on some items for the pantry and freezer.
    Thankful to know my prices and scoring some really good deals when the chance has come up.
    Now hoping for a more on budget feb 🙂

    1. Hi Juanita,
      How’s things mate? Isn’t it great that you can now look over the entire month to see not only the numbers but what you bought. The good thing about the grocery game challenge is that it is almost a price book. Plus, the more you type up your shops it helps you to learn and know your prices at least it has for us. WOW you had major discounts this month impressed I am. You were over budget in Jan now lets see if you can kill the Feb budget…. will you carry over that overage so you stick to the yearly budget? you get ballot #56 P.s Great deal on the chicken,.

      1. Hey Mr.CBB
        I happy that I changed to keep track of my monthly totals and gone is the guilt of being over if there is a bad week but in the end it works out.
        We don’t have a yearly food budget. For us right now it works doing it monthly.
        I look forward to being on budget for feb and maybe even under 🙂
        There was a happy dance for the chicken I scored!

        1. Hey,
          If you have a monthly budget x it by 12 and that is your yearly budget. So if you go over one month say $50.. and your monthly budget is $300 the next month you spend $250 instead of $300 so you stick to your grocery budget for the months and the entire year. 🙂 You are doing so well!!!

  8. Walmart

    Mouthwash – $4.97 – $.75c
    Spring rolls – $5.00
    Sea salt – $1.00
    Michelina meal – $1.00 (-$.50 rebate from Checkout 51)
    Danino yoghurt – sale $2.00

    •Total Coupons Used: $.75
    •Total Out Of Pocket: $13.87

    Food Basics

    Strawberries – sale 2x$1
    Evaporated milk – sale 3x$1.28 – 3x$1c (-$.50 rebate from Checkout 51)
    Brussel sprouts – $1.41
    Juice boxes – sale $2

    •Total Coupons Used: $3.00
    •Total Out Of Pocket: $6.51

    •Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year: $4200 ($80.77/week)
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $350
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $3.75
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
    •Total Spent This Week: $20.38
    •Total Spent So Far for January: $114.69+$85.44+63.35+$20.38= $283.86
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop: NA
    •Total Under spend for the month of January: $66.14
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: N/A
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $20.74+$24.99+$.00+$3.75 = $54.48
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : $ 66.14
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $283.86
    •Weekly Overview: So I had a pretty good month. I have a lot of food in the freezer and pantry that I was able to use so I didn’t have to buy a whole lot. I do have some more shopping to do this week but I will include those shops in next week’s post as I want to stay true and include any groceries bought after Thursday for February’s budget. I do have a separate small budget for dining out but I was good there too (meaning my savings in groceries was not a result of spending more on eating out). I hope that makes sense.

    I have been mentioning where I will get a rebate from Checkout 51 in my shops, but I have decided that I don’t want to take that amount immediately away from my totals. I have paid the money out of my pocket and I have to wait to actually get it back so I think I will count it as a discount when I physically have the cheque in the bank. For this month I have $7.50 in rebates and a total of $19.50 since I have started using the program, so I will be able to cash out once I redeem just $.50 more.

    1. Hi Joanna!
      Get out of town really only $66.14 WOW, good for you! One of the worst things we can do is pile more food on top of food. We noticed that we couldn’t keep up with expiry dates and were wasting so much. Now we only stockpile what we WILL use and forget the rest even if there are coupons. You can post your shops according to your budget and schedule not mine as everyone is on a different schedule. That’s why I like the tracking at the bottom of the post so I know and you know where you are at. That made the most sense to me as I couldn’t possibly ask everyone to change to shop when we shop. That’s a good idea with the checkout 51.. it’s probably easier as well to just state a cheque amount once then every single savings…. it’s your call. You get ballot #55.. keep at it.. impressed I am!

  9. I shop for 2 adults and a 2 year old toddler. Our budget is $90/week or $360 for this month and includes baby items, laundry, health/beauty, etc.
    End of January:
    Danactive (PM NF) $4.97 – $2.00 coupon
    10lb Potatoes (PM NF) $1.97
    Coupons $2.00
    CD $.70
    OOP $4.24

    Bulk Barn
    Cinnamon (on sale) $.84
    Nutmeg $1.31
    OOP $2.15

    Butter $2.97
    OOP $2.97

    Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year : $4,680 ($90/week)
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $360
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $2.00
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this week: $0
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this month: $5.00 + $5.00=$10.00
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this year:$10.00

    • Total Colleague Discount (CD) this week: $.70
    • Total Colleague Discount (CD) this month:$53.80
    • Total Colleague Discount (CD) this year: $53.80
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: 0
    •Total Spent This Week: $9.36
    •Total Spent So Far for (January): $132.20 + $114.44=$246.75 + $45.41=$281.78 + $57.93=$339.71 + $9.36=$349.07
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop: N/A
    •Total Over/Under spend for the month of (January): $10.93
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: N/A
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $26.97 + $60.28=$87.25 + $52.44=$139.69 + $19.84=$159.53 + $2.00=$161.53
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : N/A
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $349.07
    •Weekly overview: I decided to split up the week so that I could do accurate monthly totals. I made it! $10.93 under budget for January! I need to do better next month though. I only made it because I used gift cards.


    Carnation milk $1.34 (cashier forgot to PM but I wasn’t going to fight over $.06) – $1.00 coupon and – $.50 Checkout 51 -> donated to the food bank on the way out of the store
    Tostitos salsa $2.50 – $.50 coupon – $1.00 checkout 51
    Tostitos scoops $1.88 – $.50 coupon
    Coupons $1.00
    Checkout 51 $1.50
    CD $.57
    Tax free day $.22
    OOP $3.15

    Arctic gardens veggies $3.79 – FPC
    AJ pancake syrup $2.97
    Carnation milk (PM FB) $1.28 – $1.00 coupon – $.50 checkout 51 (donated to the food bank on the way out of the store)
    Special K flatbread breakfast sandwiches (PM FB) 3 x $2.99 – 3 x $2.00 coupons (Ken loves these)
    Highliner fish (PM FC) $3.99 – $1.00 coupon
    KD Smart (PM NF) 3 x $.97 – 3 x $.75 coupons (bought to bring to daycare)
    Lay’s chips (PM FB) 2 x $1.88
    Minigo $2.67 – FPC
    Miracle whip (PM NF) 3 x $2.97 – 3 x $1.00 coupons
    Natureegg egg whites $3.05 – $1.00 coupon
    NN frozen chopped spinach $1.49
    NN sour cream $1.29
    Source yogurt tub $3.17 – FPC
    Tostitos salsa $2.50 – $.50 coupon – $1.00 checkout 51
    Tostitos scoops $1.88 – $.50 coupon
    Apples (PM FB) $1.74
    Bananas $1.50
    Strawberries (PM NF) 2 x $1.67
    Dove lrg conditioner $6.97 – FPC
    Reach whitening floss (on blowout) 6 x $1.94 – 6 x $2.00 coupons
    Huggies wipes (lrg box=8 refills) $12.74 – 50% pink sticker!! – $6.37
    Coupons $42.85
    Checkout 51 $1.50
    CD $8.45
    Tax free day $3.58
    OOP $33.89!!! (60% savings not including PMing and CD)

    Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year : $4,680 ($90/week)
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $360
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $43.85
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this week: $3.00
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this month: $3.00
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this year:$13.00

    • Total Colleague Discount (CD) this week: $9.02
    • Total Colleague Discount (CD) this month:$9.02
    • Total Colleague Discount (CD) this year: $62.82
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: 0
    •Total Spent This Week: $34.04
    •Total Spent So Far for February: $34.04
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop: N/A
    •Total Over/Under spend for the month of February: N/A
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: $325.96
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $43.85
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : N/A
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $349.07 + $34.04=$383.11
    •Weekly overview: I feel like I did very well this week. We didn’t plan our menu very well for the week so I hope I don’t have to run out for anything during the week but we are so well stocked I should be able to do without. I got some great deals this week. Lots of coupons, free dental floss and half price baby wipes found hidden on the shelves. There was money making carnation milk that I donated to the food bank, $.22 KD to take to daycare. I’m pretty proud of how I’ve done so far. I’ve split this week up to now affect my monthly totals but I will total my week as well below to show I’m not doing too bad lol.

    Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year : $4,680 ($90/week)
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $360
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $45.85
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this week: $3.00
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this month: $3.00
    • Total Checkout 51 rebates this year:$13.00

    Total Colleague Discount (CD) this week: $9.72
    •Total Colleague Discount (CD) this month:$9.02
    •Total Colleague Discount (CD) this year: $62.82
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: 0
    •Total Spent This Week: $43.40
    •Total Spent So Far for February: $34.04
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop: N/A
    •Total Over/Under spend for the month of January/February: N/A
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: $325.96
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $43.85
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : N/A
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $349.07 + $34.04=$383.11

    1. Hi Jen!!
      That’s fine how you do your totals as you are the one tracking it not me… I just read along. Look at that nice $62 in your pocket since Jan for that CD.. lucky! I’m VERY happy to hear that you noticed you were only under because of the gift cards and you need to do better in Feb… I like that. Being aware is half the battle. Did you do the Tostitos promo as well? Keep at it Jen.. like I said I’m betting you can drop it down.. you just wait and see until I get you going.. ha!! Cheers mate You get ballot #54

      1. I love the discount! It saved me hundreds of dollars last year! I did not fall into the trap and get the $20 tostitos deal. I would have had to spend more than $10 more dollars to do that promo so I decided against it. I would like to find more ways to cut spending without having to give up those things that I don’t want to give up. We’re saving $3 a week from Ken giving up his magazine 😀 lol

        1. Good, that all adds up. We did not do the promo either as it’s just more junk in the house that we don’t need and then they send more coupons for more junk again… the cycle…. hahah.. you are doing awesome, proud of you, you know that!

  10. Hi Mr. CBB,
    Being really disciplined is proving to be harder than it looks. I was at Food Basics and saw that they had Soft soap body was on sale for 2.99. With coupons that would bring it down to 1.99 for my favourite smelling soap. I picked up 4. Thing is, I don’t need it. I have enough body wash to last me until fall and it would have thrown my budget off terribly. I got all the way to the cash and was standing in line when my conscience got the better of me. I put them back and placed the coupons under the first one on the shelf. I hope they are well used by someone.

    It just happens that I ran out of rice and skim milk powder this week. These items are cheaper to buy in bulk but cost a lot when you buy them. The rice will last about 4-5 months and the milk powder about 3-4. I use the powder for baking and keep the fresh stuff for drinking. Here is my shop for this week:

    1x reduced red peppers = 0.99
    1 x reduced cauliflower = 0.79
    1 x apples = 4.99
    1 x bag avocados = 1.88
    Plastic bag = 0.05
    Total OOP = 8.71

    Giant Tiger
    1 x toilet paper @ 4.97 – 1.00 coupon =3.97
    2 x toilet paper @4.97 – 1.00 coupon = 7.94 (stockpile items)
    1 x high liner fish fillets @2.00 – 1.00 coupon = 1.00
    2 x whole wheat wonder bread @2.87 – 2.00 coupon = 3.74
    Plastic bag = -0.03 for having my own bag
    Total OOP = 18.56
    Coupons used = 6.00

    Shoppers Drug mart
    2 x 4L milk @3.99 = 7.98
    2 x dozen eggs @ 1.99 – 1.00 coupon = 2.98
    1 x mini marshmallows = 0.99
    2 x chunk tuna @ 0.99 = 1.98
    2 x salmon @1.49 = 2.98
    4 x Mr. Clean @ 2.99 – 1.50 off WUB 2 = 8.96 (stockpile items)
    Total OOP = 27.55
    Coupons used = 4.00

    Food Basics
    1 x 8kg rice = 6.99
    7 x cat food @ 0.49 = 3.43
    1 x activia yogurt @2.99 – 1.00 coupon = 1.99
    3 x canned mandarins @3/2.00 = 2.00
    1 x 1.5kg skim milk powder = 13.99
    1 x spray starch = 2.89
    1 x cream cheese @3.79 – 1.00 coupon = 2.79
    1x pepperoni = 3.79
    1 x olives = 3.97
    1 x parsnips = 2.47
    1 x stevia = 4.99
    1 x white sugar = 2.47
    1 x Worcestershire sauce = 1.49
    1 x chicken bouillon concentrate = 2.99
    1 x large hot chocolate mix = 6.99
    1 x green cabbage = 1.50
    1 x celery = 1.77
    1 x olive oil = 3.49
    1 x yeast = 3.49
    1 x hazelnut coffee = 4.99
    2 x 500g selection cheese @ 4.99 =9.98
    6 x 500g selection cheese @4.99 = 29.94 (stockpile items)
    1 x bagels = 1.79
    1 x air pop popcorn = 1.79
    1 x green tea = 1.48
    1 x quick oats = 2.29
    2 x strawberries @ 1.00 = 2.00
    1 x rye bread = 2.19
    1 x tortillas = 4.09
    1 x reduced avocados = 1.99 (makin’ guacamole, too!)
    3 x reduced peppers @ 0.99 = 2.99
    1 x sweet potatoes = 2.42
    Total OOP = 144.07
    Coupons used = 3.00

    Total Grocery Budget for the Year: $7300.00 /year
    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $600.00 or $150.00/week
    Stockpile budget: $50.00/month / Used: $ 46.84 /Carryover: $3.16
    Total Spent This Week: $ 152.05
    Total Spent So Far for (February): $ 152.05
    Total Over/Under spent this shop: $2.05 over
    Total Over/Under spent for the month of (February): $2.05 over
    Total Left to Spend for the Month: $ 497.95 (reg + stockpile amts)
    Total Coupons Used this Week: $ 13.00
    Total Coupons Used This Month: $ 13.00
    Total coupons used this year: $ 103.43
    Total to Carry Over Next Month: $ 0.00
    Total Spent To Date This Year: $ 898.54

    1. Hi Donna!
      You have a carry over for your stockpile, good to see you have that small budget set aside like we do. It helps us out that way for items that are a great price so it doesn’t eat our entire budget up. You were so close this week $2.05 over wow impressive! I know what you mean about being disciplined it’s hard but once we get used to this is all we have to spend then it becomes easier. One thing I like about Metro reduced section is we get the good stuff, meaning the grade A as opposed to second grade reduced at the other shops. At least that’s what we noticed so we always look at Metro now. You have plenty to go for the month of Feb!! Keep at it… You get ballot #53

  11. you did well this month mr cbb! i’m under budget too but had the help of some reward programs and i still have a few i can use next month. this (long) list was the shop for the week:

    1 x compliments salad dressing $2
    3 x leadbetters pork loin $4.51, $5.05, $5.07
    1 x 2pk reduced red onion $.99 (whatever)
    1 x green pepper $1.54 (made of the same gold red onions are…)
    1 x pizza pepperoni $1.37
    6 x gay lea spreadable butter $2 -.75 ea
    total $32.52
    less $4.50 coupons
    less $20 cheque from checkout 51
    oop $8.03

    6 x aylmer diced tomatoes $.99 ea (has coupons for $1 wub 2 del monte canned veg on the label)
    oop $5.94

    1 x drano septic stuff $6.79 – fpc up to $7.49
    tax $.88
    total $7.67
    less $7.49 coupon
    oop $.18

    2 x dempsters ww bread pm foodbasics $1.88 ea
    1 x green pepper $.52 (much better price) less $2 wub 2 dempsters ww bread
    1 x parchment paper $2.97 (no idea what a good price for this is)
    1 x kraft salad dressing pm no frills $1.97
    1 x old el passo fajita kit pm no frills $2.97
    10 x zantac $2.22 – $3 ea
    tax $3.27
    total $37.66
    less $32 coupons
    oop $5.66

    bulk barn
    2 x 9kg cat litter $4.99
    1 x bulk durum semolina $.50
    tax $1.30
    total $11.78
    less $3 wus $10
    oop $8.78

    1 x 3lbs onions $1.47
    1 x 5pk garlic $.99
    1 x tre stella ricotta $3.99 – .75
    total $6.45
    less .75 coupons
    oop $5.70

    4 x del monte canned veg .79 ea – $1 wub 2
    total $3.16
    less coupons $2
    oop $1.16

    1 x orville already popped corn $3.99 – fpc but they still charged me the tax (tax on free is a pet peeve)
    1 x artic garden frozen veg $3.99 – $5 (got overage? okayyy didn’t expect that – guess it covers the popcorn tax…)
    1 x value pk medium ground beef $7.17
    tax $.52
    total $ 15.67
    less coupons $8.99
    oop $6.68

    4 x bacon portion packs 375g (not sure of kind as hubby picked them up today – assuming maple leaf) $3.99 ea – 50% manager sticker
    total $15.96
    less manager coupon $8
    oop $7.96

    2 x mushrooms pm foodbasics $.88 ea
    2 x extra large eggs 2.98 ea
    1 x tostitos salsa $2.97 – $2 wub 2 doz eggs and salsa
    2 x tostitos nacho chips pm foodbasics $1.88 – $1 wub 2
    1 x no name lasagne noodles $1.77
    tax $.49
    total $16.71
    less coupons $3
    oop $13.71

    Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year : $3600.00 for 3 people and 2 cats

    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $300.00 or $60.00 week *fixed to reflect 5 shopping weeks this month
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $61.73 actual coupons + $8 store discounts/coupons + $20 checkout 51 cheque rec’d =$89.73
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
    •Total Spent This Week: $63.80
    •Total Spent So Far for (January): $0 + $65.89 + $1.17 + $50.69 + $63.80 = $181.55
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop: $3.80 over
    •Total Over/Under spend for the month of (January): -$60 + $5.89 -$58.83 – $9.31 + $3.80 = $118.45 under
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: $118.45
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $128.21 + $261.43 + $75.92 + $88.04 + $89.73= $643.33
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : $118.45
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $181.55
    •Weekly Overview:
    LOVE the price at the bulk barn for the kitty litter! works out to .39/kg after the coupon instead of .72/kg (the maxx price at foodbasics this week).
    i normally wouldn’t buy parchment paper or durum semolina, but i’d like to try making english muffins this weekend if time permits.

    1. i wrote the last few purchases prior to hubby coming home with the items on his list (evidence that he has conveniently thrown away). seems he found no name tins of mushrooms for .88 instead of pm’ing fb for the fresh ones. he told me i need to be more specific (list and flyer to pm with are specific in my mind). he got the evil eye but he’s still allowed to shop because he is the king of finding meat deals 🙂

    2. Hi Chickypoodles

      I like your (whatever) after your reduced onions, was that sarcasm lol. Good deal on the tomatoes.. and they have the coupons on them. I’d say 2.97 is a decent price for parchement but we get ours at bulk barn and use that handy 3.00 off wub 10.00. Awesome deal on the bacon.. +1 for hubby. I’m freakin amazed at your month wow… you do so well.. you should come shopping with us and help us kick it like you do! You hace some great rewards and discounts but that’s all part of the budget! Keep at it. You get ballot #52

  12. Week of Jan 28 to Feb 3rd, 2013 (I am attributing this week to my FEB Budget)

    Save On Foods – Shop #1

    1 – pkg of 4 GF Frozen Buns ($6.99 – 1.00 price reduction) = $5.99

    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions: $1.00
    •Total Checkout51 Savings: $0.00
    •Total Coupons Used: $0.00
    •Total More Points Earned = 84
    •Total OOP: $5.99
    $5.99 Grocery Expense

    Safeway – Shop #1

    2 Loaves – Ener-G Brown Rice Bread $7.98

    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions: $0.00
    •Total Checkout51 Savings: $0.00
    •Total Coupons Used: $0.00
    •Total Air Miles Earned = 0 Miles
    •Total OOP: $7.98
    $7.98 Grocery Expense

    Zena’s Bakery – Shop #1

    1 – pkg of 4 GF Kaiser Buns $6.50

    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions: $0.00
    •Total Checkout51 Savings: $0.00
    •Total Coupons Used: $0.00
    •Total OOP: $6.50
    $6.50 Grocery Expense

    Costco Canada – Shop #1

    1 – pkg of Jumbo Hot Dot Buns $4.99
    1 – pkg KS Beef Weiners $9.99
    1 – pkg of KS Sliced Ham $6.99
    1 – pkg of 4 Imitation Crab $9.99
    1 – pkg of Turkey Pepperoni $13.59

    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions: $0.00
    •Total Checkout51 Savings: $0.00
    •Total Coupons Used: $0.00
    •Total OOP: $45.05
    $45.05 Grocery Expense

    Save On Foods – Shop #2

    4 cans 2% Evaporated Milk ($11.56 – 5.56 price reduction) = $6.00
    12 Bay leaves from Bulk $0.14
    1.13 Kg Brown Rice Flour (bulk) $6.67
    4 Campbell’s Chicken Rice Soup GF (4 @ $2.17) = $8.68
    12 cans Carnation Evaporated Milk ($27.59-$11.60 price reduction)=$15.99
    4 cans Carnation Evaporated Fat/Free Milk ($11.56 – 5.56 price reduction) = $6.00
    .455 Kg Flax Seeds from Bulk $2.23
    4 Fresh Express Green Salads ($9.96 – 5.96 price reduction) = $4.00
    1 pkg of 4 Lemon Streusel Muffins (frozen) $7.99
    12 cans Hunts Tomato Sauce ($15.79 – 6.80 price reduction) = $8.99
    1 bag Organic Onions ($3.99 – 1.00 price reduction) = $2.99
    1 pkg Lemon Peppercorn Haddock (frozen – 4 pc) $16.99
    1 bag 10 Lb Russet ($5.99 – 1.00 price reduction) = $4.99
    1 container Sour Cream $2.79
    3 large Walla Walla Onions $3.22
    2 Western Family Garlic Sausage ($13.98 – 6.00 price reduction) = $7.98
    1 head garlic $0.50
    1 large Yoplait Yoptimal $3.99

    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions: $43.48
    •Total Checkout51 Savings: $0.00
    •Total Coupons Used: $0.00
    •Total More Points Earned = 140
    •Total OOP: $111.10
    $111.10 Grocery Expense

    •Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year: $190 x 12 = $2,280.00 for 2 adults
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month of Feb: $ 190.00
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Week: $ 190.00/4 = $47.50 with FOUR “No Shop”
    Weeks Per Year

    •Total Gift Cards USED this Week: $0.00
    •Total Gift Cards In Reserved for Future Use: $10.00+$10.00 = $20.00
    •Total 2013 US GROCERY RESERVE for Future Use: $0.00


    •Total OOP Spent This Week:
    $5.98+$7.98+$6.50+$45.05+$111.10 = $176.61


    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions in FEB: $1.00+43.48=$44.48
    •Total Checkout51 Savings in FEB: $0.00
    •Total Coupons Used in FEB: $0.00
    •Total More Points Earned in FEB: (Feb 84+140) = 224 Points
    •Total Air Miles Earned in FEB: 0 Miles
    •Total OOP Spent in FEB: $176.61


    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions This Year:
    (Jan – $40.04) + (Feb – $1.00+43.48=$44.48) = $84.52

    •Total Checkout51 Savings This Year: (Jan – $0.00) + (Feb – $0.00) = $0.00

    •Total Coupons Used This Year: (Jan – $60.46) + (Feb – $0.00) = $60.46

    •Total More Points Earned This Year: (Jan 265) + (Feb 224) = 489 Points

    •Total Air Miles Earned This Year: (Jan 57) + (Feb 0) = 57 Miles

    •Total OOP Spent This Year: (Jan – $217.24) + (Feb – $176.61) = $393.85


    •Total Over/Under spend this week: $129.11 OVER
    •Total Over/Under spend on the month of FEB: $13.85 OVER
    •Total Over/Under This Year: $13.85

    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: ($190.00-27.24-$176.61)= $0.00 Already $13.85 Over for FEB

    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : To Be Determined at Month-end

    This week was the case lot sale at Save On Foods so I re-stocked some supplies that are part of our stockpile.

    I expect we are in good shape now for February except for a package of chicken, some skim milk, a few salad greens and possibly some bread for Larry. I hope to keep our overage for the entire month to less than $40.00. It should be doable since we have 2 day trips and a weekend away this month… when we’ll be using vacation funds for our meals. 🙂

    1. Hi Mary.
      I’m still over the moon at prices for GF products. Were you able to email any companies to see if they offer any coupons for those new to GF to try new products? That evap milk we picked up a while back on sale for $1.28-$1.00 coupons which I thought was pretty good. What do you use it for? Oh, this is going to be an interesting month for you Mary… I”m looking forward to see how it plays out for you. You get ballot 51! Cheers

  13. Our Zellers became another Walmart. the city has two now. Our closest Target will be over 100 km away!


  14. Family of seven, two dogs and two cats
    Total Grocery Budget for the Year: $ 4080.00

    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $340.00 or $85.00 week

    •Total Coupons Used this Week :0
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $- 0
    •Total Spent This Week: $3.99
    •Total Spent So Far for (January): $338.78
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop:$1.22 under
    •Total Over/Under spend for the month of (January):$1.22 under
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month:$1.22
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $26.98
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : $1.22
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $338.78
    •Weekly Overview: Did it!

    Shoppers Milk 3.99

    Total 3.99


    1. Hey we had the same shop this week lol.. at least the milk was on sale at SDM lol… and you have $1.22 to spare wow, cutting it close but you did it! Congrats!!! You get ballot #49! Feb will start next Tuesday/!! Cheers Mr.CBB

  15. I’m in U.S. and if the program is the same here, the red card can also be tied to your bank account and you use it just like a debit card. We don’t use credit cards at all, but the target card is a big hit here, especially with my readers! 🙂

  16. Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year: $4200
    •Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $350 (275.26 from December overage)
    •Total Coupons Used this Week : $.63
    Total Value Card Savings this Week: $4.45
    Total Value Card Savings this Year:$70.49
    •Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $- 2.62
    •Total Spent This Week:$25.62
    •Total Spent So Far for (insert month): $270.50
    •Total Over/Under spend this shop: $-4.76
    •Total Over/Under spend for the month of (January): $-4.76
    •Total Left to Spend for the Month: $4.76 carry over to next month
    •Total Coupons Used This Month : $14.26
    •Total to Carry Over Next Month : $ 4.76
    •Total Spent To Date This Year: $270.50
    •Weekly Overview: This was a long month and I was already handicapped by last month’s overage, but I managed (barely) to stay under budget. I will have to stock up on some things next week for sure. I love Target, but we have to drive 70 miles to get to one, so don’t go very often.


    Quaker Granola Bars 3.49-.99
    V8 Fusion 4.49-1.99
    Ravioli 1.29-.30
    Safeway Frozen Fruit Medley 6.99
    Soy milk 2.98-.48
    Almond milk 2.99
    Chicken lunch meat 1.25-.63 coupon
    Bananas 1.14
    Grapes 5.02
    Roma Tomatoes .60-.20
    Carrots 1.99-.49
    Tax 1.09

    1. Hey Kim,
      Awesome blog post today, you must be proud with your accomplishments this past year … you are all doing so well. You used $14.26 in coupons this month, no bad at all, better to stay in your pocket. Impressed that you stayed under budget good for you. See, if you think about those numbers and you know you have a set amount it not only allows you the breathing room it allows you a limit and that’s all you get. Keep at it Kim!!! Mr.CBB

  17. Hammond’s Bakery

    • 4 Beef Patties = 7.40

    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $7.40

    Donna’s Restaurant

    • Brown Stew Fish = 9.53

    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $9.53

    • Popcorn Chicken, Potato Wedges, Bottled Water

    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $10.03

    • 3 Bananas = 0.86
    • Fruit Salad = 3.80
    • 1 Apple = 0.66 (saved 0.35)
    • Tomato Sauce = 0.99
    • Diced Tomatoes = 1.99
    • Yellow Tail Shiraz = 5.50 (saved 1.49)
    • Fruit Salad = 3.39

    Total Coupons Used: $1.84
    Total Out Of Pocket: $17.52

    Penn Dutch
    • Beef Stew = 9.05
    • 4 Yellow Tail Snapper = 17.85
    • 6 Tilapia = 8.42
    • 0.82lb Tomatoes = 0.73 (saved 0.33)
    • 5lb Idaho Potatoes = 1.79

    Total Coupons Used: $0.33
    Total Out Of Pocket: $37.84

    • Frosted Flakes = 3.38
    • Pinot Noir = 4.97
    • Simple Apple Juice = 3.58
    • Hawaiian Punch = 2.08
    • Hazelnut Coffee Creamer= 3.28
    • Waffle Fries = 2.96
    • 2 loaves of bread = 5.44
    • Mini Bagels = 2.98
    • 2 cans Sardines = 2.50
    • 2 cans Tuna = 1.72
    • 2 chicken Vienna sausages = 1.00
    • Coffee = 4.98
    • Garbage Bags = 3.97
    • Bleach = 1.64
    • 6 x Bounty Paper Towels = 5.97

    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $45.24

    • 6 pk Coronas = 9.53

    Total Coupons Used: $0
    Total Out Of Pocket: $9.53

    Total Grocery Amount Budgeted For the Year: $3,500
    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $291
    Total Coupons Used this Week: $2.17
    Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
    Total Spent This Week: $137.09
    Total Spent So Far for January: $403.64
    Total Overspend this shop: $64.34
    Total Overspend for the month of January: $112.64
    Total Left to Spend for the Month: $n/a
    Total Coupons Used This Month: $13.54
    Total Spent To Date This Year: $403.64

    Weekly Overview: I am appalled at my final number. I was doing so well before. That’s it for January, so I have to make some adjustments for February. I will recalculate my weekly numbers to include this overage so that I stay within my annual budget. My plan for next week? No eating out!

    1. Hi Dr.Sheba,
      What are waffle fries? Never heard of them before… is it just a cut of fries… WOW that’s expensive bread.. Oh that hazelnut coffee creamer sounds nice. You are talking to the king of coffee cream. I’m also not used to getting booze at the local 7 eleven as we have to go to a Beer Store in Canada. We make our own fruit salads here is that an option for you? It may help you cut some costs. It’s amazing how the numbers at up, it really is and we were shocked when we first started, you are NOT alone. Excellent idea, that’s what Mary another player does and we do this as well so we can stick to the annual budget. I would start to pick apart your shops and look at areas you can save money on. If it’s pre-made foods find ways to make them at home that are not as costly like making your own french fries. You paid $2.96 for waffle fries but 5lbs of potatoes cost you $1.79, do the math and see how many bags of fries you can make out of that one bag of potatoes. Simple changes ALL add up, take it slow you will get there. You are now starting to see numbers and that is WHAT WILL help you along the way. Mr.CBB Keep at it!

      1. Hello Mr. CBB,
        Yes, waffle fries are a “cut” of fries. Not sure if there is a Chick-Fil-A where you are, but they are known for their waffle fries. Is it really expensive? I need to start thinking like you, then I may not be over budget so often. I know I NEED to make my own fruit salad because it will save me tons. I must admit it’s just pure laziness. I will try to work on that. Making my own french fries sounds like a GREAT idea. Now all I need is the courage. Thanks for your insight!!!

  18. I’ll punch in my groceries on the weekend or there abouts once I’m sure I’m done in all it’s sorry glory..:( It all boils down to the fact we need to know our prices in order to get the best deal we can. I’d shop at SDM more often for the sales if I knew what they were… we don’t get the flyer anymore here and I have complained to the store and to the website, didn’t do me any good but I got some sympathy from the assistant manager at the Huron St store in Stratford. If I happen to be in town Friday or so she will give me a copy of the upcoming ad …..
    Target……..My sister-in-law was hired on at the Guelph store so I can find out about deals there as the store opens, I have no intention of getting the credit card so I guess I’ll miss out there but what I can do is get my SIL to buy things with her card and any employee discount they give and I’ll pay her for it. If we are going to her place anyway………..why not???? She won’t care. Or if my daughter decides to get the card I can ask her to get me something once a store opens in London. Stratford is at the bottom of the list for openings. I don’t know when the new Walmart is opening in Stratford but that could be interesting as it will be right across the street from the Target………

  19. I love the Target Redcard program and use it every time I shop there, which is a lot. If I am not shopping there, then I get 6% from my grocery store purchases with my AMEX card. I try to get coupons, but am having trouble doing it with the baby. Too many things, so little time!

  20. It was pretty close this month. 🙂

    Here is the final shop for January:

    Mom 10

    Flax Seed 4.50

    Chinese cabbage 1.60
    Parsley 0.77
    Spinach 1.47
    Taco Kit 3.47
    Chips 2.59

    Total Coupons
    Total Out of Pocket 9.90

    Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $200
    Total Coupons Used this Week : $0
    Total Checkout 51 rebates this week: $2.00
    Total Checkout 51 rebates this month: $8.50
    Total Gift Cards Given Used this Week: $0
    Total Spent This Week: $24.40
    Total Spent So Far for January: $186.26
    Total Over/Under spend this shop: $25.60under
    Total Over/Under spend for the month of January: $ 13.74 under
    Total Left to Spend for the Month: $13.74
    Total Coupons Used This Month: $0
    Total to Carry Over Next Month: I guess I’ll carry only negative amounts as well. 🙂
    Total Spent to Date This Year: $186.25
    Weekly Overview: I realized I had a lot of produce left over from last week, so trying to use it up this week with items from the freezer. And yes Mr. CBB, I snuck in more chips. Hopefully, it will be the last one, as I am not craving it as much anymore.

    Have a good week!

    1. Hey Vicky,
      How can you possibly venture into Costco and only spend $4.50 lol.. must have some willpower ha! What do you use the flax seed for? OH… you bought a taco kit…we got a few with FPC’s from the summer but we won’t bother again. You’re better off buying the soft tacos, and making your own taco seasoning.. ( i think there is a link on my blog, type in taco seasoning in my search), and chicken, beef, vegetables, water, franks red hot.. whatever to jazz it up and bam… you can do it for cheaper………… or better yet make your own taco type flat breads. I have a recipe for tortillas you can make, just roll them out thin and cook… cheap! I see the chips.. what’s your fav kind? You know to be honest you hardly buy any processed foods so for the one bag of chips you buy for a treat that’s pretty awesome. Under budget!! You do well Vicky. You get ballot #46.. keep at it,maybe share some of those recipes with us!! Mr.CBB P.S I think the last line is a big pinocchio hahaha… not craving them anymore… 🙂

      1. To be fair, I wrote it in the morning, and my cravings using hit at night… 😛

        The only reason I purchased the kit was that it was on Checkout 51 for a $2 discount and superstore had it on sale for $3.50. Otherwise, I would normally just purchase the shells and make the seasoning myself.

        Hm.. those one were Ruffles Sour Cream and Onion, but I have favourites with each of the major brands, so it depends on what it is. The rule is that it has to be on sale before it gets purchased, which is followed. Most of the time that is…

        Haha, I left Costco with the flax seed, which I put in with my morning green smoothies, and a birthday cake for my sister, which I put under presents. Oh, and I ran out of budget; there were a couple other items I would have liked to pick up but the money wasn’t there. Your voice was there in my head! 🙂

        1. Yes, the checkout51 I remember reading about that taco kit then I noticed it today when I posted Christine’s guest post. I never thought to put flax in my smoothies, smart idea. At least you stuck to your budget when you needed a couple of other items…. that’s the way to do it!

  21. I used to pick up a lot of reduced bargains but the markdowns are no where near as good as they used to be. In the past I could get a decent loaf of bread for 20 pence, now I’m lucky if I can find one for a pound!

  22. Yummm…was that Habanero heat shredded cheese any good? I’ve had some chili with those peppers in it and it was ABSOLUTELY hot!! I liked it though because for whatever reason I like to punish myself with hot food.

    Anyhow, great job on the groceries! We were over budget last week but came in way under this week. I think for the month we were about $25 below what we budgeted. Score!

  23. Well Mr. CBB, I spent more than your monthly budget on Sunday 🙂 I do, however, now own 80 more rolls of toilet paper and a few blocks of cheese. Some good deals had this week: Hunts tomato sauce for $0.99 (max 3, no matter the flavour though, boo); colgate for $1 (bought the rest for the food bank); sesame rice crackers with a pink sticker, PC crackers with a pink sticker, 2x 1L almond milk for almost half price; 40 rolls of royale for $20.

  24. No, I don’t plan to get a Target card. I expect the enticements to get you signed up either won’t last or it will quickly become a credit card with a fee. Nothing in life is free. Also, having shopped at Target US…I can still do better, without all the gimmicks by shopping in the US.

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