Hello! Not long after starting this project, I decided it would be a good idea to devote one post each month to taking a look at how close my grocery spending comes to the $6 per day that I targeted.
There were 31 days in the month, but I had houseguests for seven of those days. This meant that my total grocery budget in May was $252.
I was a little nervous. I’d done really well in April, but I know full well that I’m the poster child for panicking and buying too much food when company comes.
And … that’s exactly what I did. Although I consider my restaurant and potluck spending to have been quite good in May, I really went hog wild on the grocery end of things.
The Small Bright Spot
The $31.34 you see below represents one lunch for myself and my sister at A&W, and my contribution to one potluck dinner. I’m happy with this expenditure and I don’t think I could bring it down a whole lot lower.
|Actual grocery expenditures = $311.38 (ouch)
Restaurants and potluck = $31.34
Grand total = $342.72
When everything is tallied up, my total food spending in May was $342.72. That’s $90.72 and 36% over budget. (Percentage-wise, it looks better than I thought.)
(Spoiler Alert: Things got better in June.)
Even though I spent a lot in May, I managed not to let a lot of fresh produce go bad, and some of the biggest-ticket items I bought came out of the frozen food section in the supermarket. That means they’ve been there for me to use up in June and July, helping to even out my over-spending.
I can’t say that I learned anything particularly frugal over the course of May, and I still believe that it’s important to have lots of food in the house when you’ve got guests. In my case, I was feeding anywhere from three to seven people at any given time, so flexibility was important.
Plus, there’s that whole “feeding your soul” bit, as cheesy as it sounds. You can’t beat the magic that happens with a gang of your cousins — over a plate of olives, some quality cheese and bottle of wine — while laughing your head off at some crazy piece of family history. Budget or no budget, I’d never want to cheap out on that.