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4 Costly Kitchen Distractions To Avoid While Cooking : The Grocery Game Challenge 2016 #5 Oct 31-Nov 6




You might think what I’m about to say is NOT a big deal until something happens to you or even worse someone you love. Both mental and physical distractions while cooking can produce a ruined meal, injury, death or damage to your house or apartment.

Don’t turn your kitchen into an episode of Kitchen Nightmares.

It’s so easy to get caught up in everyday life that when we get home it’s tough to turn off from the work day. How we choose to try and do that may affect the way we prepare meals in the kitchen and potentially your wallet depending on the outcome.

  • You or someone else could lose a life
  • You or someone else could get injured
  • You burn and ruin your meal
  • You cause a fire

What are distractions?

Distractions are anything that takes your eyes and mind off the task(s) at hand.

Related: Should I get tenants insurance?

You may be one of those people who are able to multi-task and do it all but when I’m in the kitchen I like to think I’m on the job. Imagine you were a chef in a restaurant but you’re actually in your own kitchen. You decide to leave what you are doing at the stove to answer the doorbell. Not everyone has a kitchen at the front of the house so that means an even further distance occurs from the food cooking in the kitchen.

Instantly you might think, oh no I’m in the middle of cooking however it’s SO EASY to forget that once you start a conversation. We’ve all done it. Don’t be ashamed to tell the person you are cooking and to call or come back at another time.

It might only be once the smoke reaches the front door or even worse fire that you click back to chef mode. You can’t do this while you are at work in a kitchen and doing so at home is no different. You must always keep your mind in the kitchen and your eyes on the food.

If your spouse comes in the kitchen and wants to give you a hug, kiss make it quick. Tell him or her that cooking time is hands off time and to save it for later even thought it may seem harmless and fun. Why? because you’re cooking. If you must then turn off the stove and get on with your adventure otherwise save it for later.


Kitchen distractions apply to everyone


Today I wanted to touch on a few kitchen distractions as a reminder to be safe while you are cooking and to remember that it only takes seconds for something to happen. We are all human so even the most prestigious chefs will limit their distractions to keep focused on the task at hand.

Don’t allow kitchen distractions to cook up a disaster or you may be paying for it with money, emotion or lies that your meal was amazing.

Keep these kitchen distractions in mind before you start to cook so you prepare your space.




Hands up how many of you have burned a meal because you got distracted by social media? I thought so.

Just as texting and driving is a huge distraction the same goes in the kitchen with potentially fatal results or severe injury. We live in a time where we are always connected to the web which means it’s hard for some people to log off to take time to do what they need to do.

Whether it be your computer, your smart phone, the television or even taking photos with your camera keep in mind that these kitchen distractions which may seem like everyday normal distractions can actually set you back in the kitchen. If you have kids you will want to set an example for them as well because they may just follow the leader later in life.


Kids and Pets


When myself or my wife cooks our son is always there tugging on our pants, calling out for us or making a disaster because we’re not paying attention to him like we typically do. When you’re a parent it’s not easy to tell your child you’re cooking and to find distractions for them so you can limit your own.

The biggest worry is that if we lose our mind for a moment thinking about the meal that our son might touch a hot oven or oil might splat or even worse he touches a frying pan somehow and it spills on him. Even though keeping the handle of a pot or pan inwards is recommended for safety of the cook a child will always find a way.

When your child is of cooking adventure age and interested to help you in the kitchen which is a great idea this too can become part of the distractions of disaster. It’s important that if you do go this route to keep your eye on the prize otherwise you may be ordering in take-out food.

Related: Eating out vs. Eating In

Our dog loved food just like every other dog and as soon as he heard the pots and forks he was right there next to us watching every move we make. He was waiting for that piece of cheese or meat to accidentally fall to the floor so he could hoover it up or he would just be in the way so we were climbing over him or having to go around him.

It’s always best if you have a pet who can’t stay away from the stove to be put in another room or trained to stay away from the stove. Not only are animal distractions a hazard to your meal but the pet risks getting burned or injured if they come around while you have the stove open or you’re cooking with oil.




How would you feel if you knew that the chef was washing dishes and cooking your meal at the same time? Even worse he took a bathroom break in the middle of sautéing your vegetables because he could no longer hold it any more? I’m sure many of you by now have said you’ve done this at home but wouldn’t want it to happen when you are eating out at a restaurant.

If you are by yourself in the kitchen cooking you should NEVER leave the kitchen unattended for anything. It’s best to turn off what you are cooking if you are alone and need to step away or find someone to watch over your meal while you bolt to the bathroom.

Leave the sweeping and dishes until the end of the meal so your main focus is the meal. This way you won’t forget ingredients, add the wrong ingredients or burn the meal.




Do you remember Pasquale the Italian TV chef who always sang and drank wine while he cooked? That style of cooking is fun and I do the same sometimes but alcohol should always be enjoyed in moderation. You wouldn’t want your chef at a restaurant preparing your meal and drinking a beer at the same time would you?

Probably not and if you try to prove that it’s different then I fail to see how. Maybe being on the job is different from cooking at home however the same results can happen if you are distracted from cooking a meal.

We all know what happens when we drink alcohol and how our bodies react to a few drinks. Alcohol not only distracts you from the job you are doing it may also bring on drowsiness. If you drink too much alcohol your body may react in such a way that you wander off to find a bed or couch and fall asleep.

You forget that you are cooking because all your body wants to do is sleep. If you plan to drink while you cook make sure that you have supervision or limit the amount that you drink so you don’t go overboard. Not many people are caught drinking and driving even know that they were behind the wheel drunk. The last thing you want to do is endanger people’s lives while you’ve got your chef’s hat on.

Cooking a meal and alcohol is never a great mix even when handling the BBQ in the summer. I have a beer or two just like everyone else but I don’t go overboard. When you’re at home it’s nice to enjoy the relaxation but also remember it’s not safe to do so if you plan to drink more than the kitchen police allow.

I’ve only touched on a few kitchen distractions today as a reminder to everyone that cooking is fun but it’s important to focus on your tasks and try not to get side-tracked by the little things that could cause unanticipated results.

Happy Cooking everyone!

Chef Mr.CBB (Has a nice ring to it doesn’t it? Ha)

Discussion Question:

Have you ever been caught up with kitchen distractions that caused an undesirable outcome? Share your comment below and tell us what happened and what you would have done differently or do differently now.


October 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.

October 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 $0
  • 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



  • 1 x Sealtest Milk 2% $4.27

Total Out-of-Pocket $4.27

  • Total to spend this month : $235.00-$8.38 overage from September= $226.62
  • Stockpile budget 2016 : $25.00
  • Stockpile budget used this month: $25.00
  • 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: $503.74
  • Total spent this week: $4.27
  • Total spent so far this month: $236.77
  • Total over/Under spend this shop: over
  • Total over/Under spend for the month: -$5.88+ $4.27= -$10.15
  • Total left to spend for the month: $25.39-$31.27= -$10.15 over
  • 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

Weekly Overview (your final thoughts)

We bought milk and will survive on Halloween candy this week. Haha!! Wow what a month that was and I’m glad it’s over with this week. On to the last two months of 2016 Grocery Game Challenge. How are you all feeling so far with your shopping this year?


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
  • 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, 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 that mailed coupons to households has gotten involved with the addition of a new mobile 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.


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