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$1000/ mo for groceries - Page 4

post #61 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2xy View Post
I don't do cloth tp, but it's because I'm lazy and not because I think it's gross.

You gals make me laugh. What do you think people did before the very RECENT invention of toilet paper? I really don't see how cloth tp is any more "gross" than cloth diapers.
Before toilet paper, I think usually people washed themselves with water. We've always had bidets at home, since I was a kid, and it dramatically reduces the need for toilet paper. Our bidet shoots out enough water pressure to get poop off. All you really need is a towel to dry off after that. Toilet paper becomes minimal to unnecessary. Everyone gets cleaner when using a bidet rather than dry-wiping with toilet paper. Prior to having bidets, I remember my mom would always bring a bowl of water with her to the toilet to wash herself off. For my daughter, when I change her diapers, I always change and wash her off in the sink. No wipes necessary.
post #62 of 120
The pasta sauce over veggies is a fabulous idea! I think I'm going to steal that idea for when the garden is crazy with squash and eggplant. I think a meaty red sauce over veggies will be awesome.
post #63 of 120
Oh yes, eggs are a good thought. Much cheaper than meat.
post #64 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by ThereseReich View Post
Before toilet paper, I think usually people washed themselves with water.
I'm sure it depends upon region and class. I can't imagine anyone wanting to take a mini bath in an outhouse in 20 degree weather.

I know that through time, people have used old catalog pages, newspaper, leaves, and dried corn cobs to take care of business back there. Cloth seems mild in comparison.

And even if they washed themselves with water, they probably used some sort of cloth rag while doing it. It doesn't seem that just dumping water down the crack of your behind would do much good without some scrubbin'.
post #65 of 120
I am trying to accomplish a similar goal. I'm the low carber and we don't have nut allergies, thank god.
OP, South Beach has plenty of vegetarian options. Beans, no rice, lentil soups, tofu. I'd also suggest DH have plain tuna on a salad for his lunch/dinner. That's what I eat a ton of.
I begin my grocery shopping at Costco where I can get lots of organic produce, regional eggs and even some organic or natural meats. I used to be about 90% organic in all my shopping but with our changing budget, I'm having to compromise that.
For what I can't get at Costco, I shop soley from sale fliers. Some weeks we stay on budget, other weeks we don't.
My suggestions
Check craigslist for local eggs. Raising chickens has become very popular. Lots of folks have extra eggs to give away, trade or sell cheap.
Ditto on the juice and single servings.
Do tuna for lunchbox sandwhiches.
Bake on Sundays...cookies, muffins, granola bars for lunch boxes.
Pop popcorn for the salty/crunchy portion of lunches. I always pack extra because my kids' friends love regular popcorn.
If you don't want to bake bread, get it day old from a bakery. My family's a little spoiled for good bread. They just don't care for homemade after the initial hot from the oven period.
Skip the breakfast meats. SB doesn't require them. Eggs alone are adequate protein.
Will DH eat the occasional spud? Get big bags of potatoes. My kids love baked potatoes for breakfast.
Cook pasta for everyone else and the low carber has spaghetti squash or just the meatballs.
post #66 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by cristeen View Post
Wow. Talk about insulting. Gym memberships are not feasible for many people, and diet usually is a bigger contributor to weight issues than exercise. If he's having success with South Beach, then he should stick to what's working rather than going back to eating a way that made him sick to begin with.

And if you balk at $1000/mo for a family of 6, I hate to think what you'd say to my grocery budget for a family of 2, soon to be 3. Just because it's a huge amount where you are doesn't mean that it's so huge for other parts of the country.
Yes to that. I think we all spend what is feasible for our families, and to criticize one person's budget just because it's more than someone else's (or more than the "norm" on MDC) is so insulting. We all do what we can and if someone is TRYING to be frugal (out of wanting to just do better, not necessity) than that is great, too!

My grocery budget is at least $1000.00 if not more per month. I was spending like, $1400 a month but got it down a bit. I am proud of that. For me, it was a huge thing.

Some people (I don't know HOW) can get away with $300 a month. That's great. But some can't. I never could. Food is one luxury we give ourselves in this family, and I am so glad that we can.
post #67 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by Myboysmom View Post
Packing lunches is KILLER! I tried "refill and reuse" and it about broke me! I had three boys packing their lunch and they were more concerned about recess than bringing home their juice bottle, or lunch box!
I had that problem with ds1, too. I lost about half my spoons, and several refillable containers, before I gave up. But, ds1's lunches were pretty basic...he generally got a sandwich (we did a lot of peanut butter, but also some deli meats, and homemade egg salad), a few veggies sticks or a piece of fruit...and something else, depending what was available/cheap at the store. I never packed a drink of any kind - he just used the water fountain at school.
post #68 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by BetsyS View Post
I think it's the idea of it? Also the smell. I recently used sposies for a week (my MIL came to help after I had surgery), and oh.my.word. The smell. Those things are awful.

With my diapers, the smell stays in the diaper pail only, so it seems so much better. I'm just imagining the used cloth t.p. in a bucket on the floor near the toilet. Ugh.
LOL!!!!: To clarify.....DH does not use it. I use it for #1. I have a covered pail that they go into.
For awhile, I did use them for both, and never had a problem with smell. Ever.
If you use them just for #1, its no different in the wash then underwear.

If you stop and think how much human waste goes into the landfills by way of diapers and pads, it is an easy leap to move into family cloth.
I eliminated 80% of our tp usage, just in making the switch.
Plus, its much better for our septic.
For a family with several females in it, think about how much that adds up to in a year, never mind a lifetime.
post #69 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChetMC View Post
We don't buy a lot of cleaning supplies, but what we do buy we buy in jumbo quantities. They don't go bad. I can't believe that people buy 1 litre bottles of dishwashing liquid.
I'm a big believer in buying in large/bulk quantities. I don't do it with cleaners. DS2 spills them a lot and having more just means that more gets wasted. Plus, we don't really have a lot of storage space here, which is also a consideration. It's hard enough to find somewhere ds2 can't reach...

I don't know if any of that applies for the OP, though - her kids are older than ds2 (I think).
post #70 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by BetsyS View Post
The pasta sauce over veggies is a fabulous idea! I think I'm going to steal that idea for when the garden is crazy with squash and eggplant. I think a meaty red sauce over veggies will be awesome.
It is My fave is sauteed zucchini w/meat sauce. Delish!!!
post #71 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulaJoAnne View Post
And, I am guessing the whole family cloth thing freaked out a few LOL!!!!
Its not that weird at all.
I use cloth pads, and when we have babies, I will use cloth diapers and wipes!
I would much rather not throw my money down the septic tank.
And tp is not that cheap.
I like this saying. "If your not using cloth, you are using garbage."
I've been thinking about family cloth for a while, and watching the price of toilet paper creep up, together with ds2's infuriating habit of dropping whole rolls in the toilet, is putting it back into a priority spot for me. I know dh and ds1 won't go for it, so I'd still need tp, but it would still be worth it to cut back...
post #72 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by mom0810 View Post
Eeew. Eeew. Eeew.

I think adult poop is way more gross than baby poop.
I honestly suspect that I'll wimp out and only use cloth when I pee...but it still cuts way back. I mean, how many more times do most people pee than poop in a day? (I don't count - I'm pregnant...the question is how many times do I pee in an hour.)
post #73 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by mom0810 View Post
My grocery budget is at least $1000.00 if not more per month. I was spending like, $1400 a month but got it down a bit. I am proud of that. For me, it was a huge thing.

Some people (I don't know HOW) can get away with $300 a month. That's great. But some can't. I never could. Food is one luxury we give ourselves in this family, and I am so glad that we can.
I'm in awe of people who do the $300/month thing. It's not going to happen around here. We hit somewhere around $800-$900/month for a family of five (including one male teenager). I know I could trim about $100 off that without too much trouble, but we're not quite there yet, in terms of making that a priority. I do track where we're spending, and it's occasionally a shock. We spend a lot on cheese, and on snacking nuts...but not as much on meat or convenience foods as I'd thought (they're both big ticket items, but not as big as I thought). I do find my use of convenience "foods" varies wildly. It's been up through much of this pregnancy, because I'm so tired...but my personal consumption of real food is also up, because I'm trying to feed baby-under-construction properly. (When I'm really tired, I'm far more likely to buy snack-type indulgences for dh and ds1, in particular.)

I think we do okay, considering COL around here, and the fact that we mostly eat a fairly nutritious diet...and we're fairly heavy meat eaters.
post #74 of 120
"For a family with several females in it, think about how much that adds up to in a year, never mind a lifetime."

You know, this is an excellent point. DD#1 and I should probably start using cloth wipes for pee when the baby comes - there is going to be a cloth diaper pail right next to the toilet anyhow!
post #75 of 120
Smithie: I've been thinking I may make that my transition time, too. As you say, there will be a diaper pail, anyway, so it's a good time to get in the habit. DH and I have a trashed flannel sheet set that I need to do something with...and this would work.
post #76 of 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by Storm Bride View Post
I never packed a drink of any kind - he just used the water fountain at school.
HUGE issue in this school district! They can't GET OUT OF THEIR SEAT during lunch to get water!
post #77 of 120
About the $300/mo for groceries thing...

I hang out here a lot, and I've been known to brag a little : about our budget. It's $350 for groceries, including toiletries and pet food.

If I ever made anybody feel bad about their grocery spending, I am truly sorry.

There are several reasons why our grocery bill is so low.

1. No allergies.
2. DD and I don't eat meat other than fish.
3. DH gets a lot of the meat he eats for free (he cuts hunter's deer and makes bacon from pork bellies for a share of the bacon; his parents give him grass fed beef for free or at cost).
4. We get WIC.
5. We live in a breadbasket- lots of local farms, local fish, meats, tons of dairy, wild berries everywhere, etc.
6. We garden.
7. We do a ton from scratch- virtually all baked goods, lots of value added dairy, most of our condiments, soymilk etc.
8. Overall, the COL here is low.
9. I SAH and DH helps a ton- he is now a professional baker, but in the past has worked as a chef and a butcher, so he is highly skilled and I have the time to do stuff.
10. Good friends own a restaurant and hook us up- we get all kinds of stuff from them at cost+10%. Organic flours and dry beans, yummy local eggs, 5 gal containers of biodegradable dishwashing liquid, grosses of bread bags, etc.
11. We have a basement pantry, a large chest freezer, a chest fridge, and a very well equipped kitchen, including a canner and a Cusinart, a Kitchen Aid, food mill, big giant All Clad stock pots, a vacuum sealer, etc. The basement pantry came installed in the house, and everything else I listed (and a whole lot of stuff that I didn't) except for chest freezer- all that stuff was gifted to us. My family and DH's parents and grandparents know that we like to cook, and we have been on the recieving end of some great presents and really nice handmedowns.
12. We like it. It's fun for us, so easy it's to make it a priority- that is, eating local and organic and doing stuff from scratch. That said, this didn't happen overnight. It has been a progression over our entire marriage (5.5 years).

Not everybody lives in a low COL breadbasket. People have allergies and demanding careers and less generous relatives. We all have differing priorities. That's all okay.

That being said, getting your grocery bill down? It can be done. It's just a question of what you are comfortable doing in order to achieve that. I mean, gosh, I could feed my whole family for $0.70 to $1.00 a day if we ate nothing but Ramen. That would cut my grocery bill down by 80-90%. But I'm not okay with that. So I just do the best I can while sticking to strategies that I'm comfortable with.
post #78 of 120
Our budget is very small as well, but there are a couple of reasons for it, and they may not feasible for most.
But, I am more then willing to let others learn from our way of life, because it is possible that others may be able to use some of the info in their lives.

We hunt and fish for all our meat needs.
And, we garden. We are working towards a fully self sufficient way of living in this regard.
And, for things that we must buy, we buy in bulk, either through Azure or Costco and Sam's.

ETA: It is amazing how much less you can spend, when you are not purchasing processed foods.
Never mind the health benefits that occur, do to a whole foods diet.
We no longer have medical issues, and the few things that crop up, I have learned how to take care of them my self.
post #79 of 120
About cloth tp, why not use a perineal Irrigation bottle, you know, the ones they give you right after birth to cleanse that area after going to the bathroom? Like this one: http://www.amazon.com/Itm-Perineal-I.../dp/B000J5KOIE

I'm thinking any squeeze bottle with a tip (like condiment bottles at the dollar store, or the squeeze ones in Michaels or other craft stores) would work. I noticed that after using it, there really wasn't much there left to wipe, kwim? Just fill it with warm water, go to the bathroom, then spray yourself down & dry off with a cloth wipe or toilet paper. It would really cut down on tp usage, make for 'cleaner' cloth tp AND you'd get MUCH cleaner. I mean, if you think about it, we don't wipe baby's bottoms with dry tissue 'cuz it doesn't clean, so why should this be different with adults?

Ami
post #80 of 120
one possibility i didn't see mentioned was to make your own nut butter.

in a bulk buy from tierrafarms.com (a peanut free business) you can get a pound of organic cashew pieces for 3.85. mix in a few macadamia nuts in the blender and let it go and you have cashew butter.

we do have a vita-mix so i'm not sure if it will work with a regular blender but i think it works with a food processor.
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