With our garden coming in good, my goal with our $269 monthly food budget is to stock up the freezer with some meat for fall and winter. We are still eating on the rabbits my brother killed for us this hunting season and my dad brought us more from a friend of his. That gives us a good start. My next step was to see what I’m currently spending our money on, and see what I can cut back in order to get us a little extra meat for the freezer. I saved the grocery receipts from this month, put foods into broad categories, and then added the prices.
Here is what I found…
- Nuts – $32.71
- Breakfast Meat – $34.49
- Other Meat – $20.83
- Milk and Half-n-Half – $27.37
- Cheese and Sour Cream – $19.48
- Veggies – $38.08
- Fruits – $23.76
- Condiments (including peanut butter and honey) – $16.72
- Oil – $3.59
- Food for Girls – $19.39
- Juice – $5.63
- Beans – $5.00
- Butter – $7.42
- Coffee – $5.99
- Spices – $1.39
- Eggs – $6.98
My grand total was $268.83! I was pretty surprised that we had stayed right at our top amount for food costs. Keeping a stocked pantry and freezer is a huge help. We have also cut back on the fresh organic produce as it doesn’t seem to be very fresh from the grocery. I bought more frozen organics and potatoes than I had this winter. I’m also getting pretty good about not wasting food. The only time it gets a little difficult is when Deladis goes on one of her hunger strikes after visiting the grandparents and having an abundance of sweets. (I know… it’s the grandparents’ job to spoil the grandchildren. One day I might have the chance myself. ;))
What I knew already and has become very apparent with these totals is that I could probably cut back on my consumption of nuts. I eat them almost everyday in large quantities. If I could cut back and eat some grilled cheese sandwiches instead or something similar, I could use the extra money to stock the freezer with meats.
I have tried my hand at bread making and made a soaked version of the Bob’s Red Mill Whole Wheat Bread Package. I used to make a Pueblo Oven Bread, and I have always enjoyed fresh bread. The soaked whole wheat was really good. I’d like to eventually make bread without the need of baker’s yeast. Our body’s can do without the extra yeast. I’m going to try to make a sourdough starter from the recipe in the Nourishing Traditions cookbook. I already have rye flour. I just need to buy one more large mixing bowl. Then, I might be more willing to add the extra grain to my diet. Refined sugars and grains are the two places where I won’t budge in my dietary habits. Grains must be properly prepared so as not to be counterproductive in our digestive tracts.
Yesterday, eating from the garden was the highlight of an otherwise difficult day. It was a joyful thing to eat my scallions, lettuce, and roasted new potatoes – a joyfully good thing. It makes all the fuss and hard work over the garden seem not so bad. I’m already looking forward to planting season 2010. 🙂 Also, when I saw that we only spent $6.98 on eggs, I was happy. It is a true reward to see our efforts paying off. It’s funny how these efforts can go unnoticed unless we make the effort to check-up on ourselves.
* Check out my new recipe for killed “killt” lettuce and onions https://eastkentuckygal.wordpress.com/favorite-recipes. Also, there is a 3-way tie over at The Nourished Kitchen and my Honey-Molasses Cookies are in the running still :). Voting ends July 7th. As of yesterday, we are in the market for new laying hens. I balked at the egg buying I had to do yesterday.