Weekly Check-in

This is the last weekly check-in. No, I’m not going to quit doing them altogether (I think we have a long way to go, and I need to be held accountable), but after this I’m going to switch to a bi-weekly check-in and meal plan post. The new plan will go from the Saturday after payday to the Friday of the following payday. I’ll post an update on payday (every other week). Today is payday though, and only a week since the last check-in so I’ve just got one week to report.

But I do have the meal plan for the next two weeks. And I’ve started posting some of my recipes here for easy reference.

Food spending
Meijer

(Tuesday)
(2) 2-liter Faygo ….. $2.38
I returned $2.20 in recycleables and paid less than the cost of the deposit out of pocket: $0.18.

Meijer

(Friday)

Frozen fruit ……… $2.99
Frozen berries ……. $3.99
(5) Bananas ………. $0.73 (saved $0.25)
Sour cream ……….. $1.00 (saved $0.99)
(2) Raspberries …… $1.00 (saved $6.98)
Flour ……………. $2.29 (saved $0.20)
(3) Evaporated milk .. $4.00 (saved $0.17)
(2) Deli Turkey …… $4.99 (saved $4.99)
Bagels …………… $3.00 (saved $0.79)
(3) Pomegranates ….. $3.00 (saved $2.07)
(2) Chex …………. $2.00 (saved $2.38)
Canned tomatoes …… $1.00 (saved $0.09)
Manwich ………….. $1.00
(2) Mushrooms …….. $2.00 (saved $2.00)
Celery …………… $1.00 (saved $0.79)
(2) Waffles ………. $1.00 (saved $3.50)
Pretzels …………. $1.00 (saved $0.99)
Tomatoes …………. $1.00 (saved $2.49)
Bread ……………. $1.00 (saved $0.38 plus $0.25 Ibotta refund)
Salsa ……………. $1.00 (saved $0.73)
Blackberries ……… $1.00 (saved $2.49)
Chocolate Chips …… $0.83 (saved $2.79 – because they were Halloween colors)
Cottage cheese ……. $1.79 (saved $1.20 – it was close to the expiration date)
(2) Ground beef …… $8.96 (saved $2.24 – close to expiration date)
Beef Short Ribs …… $10.21 (saved $2.55 – close to expiration date)
(5) Pasta Sides …… $2.80 (saved $2.20)
(2) Faygo 2-L …….. $2.38
(3) Faygo 20oz ……. $1.62 (saved $0.30)
Sprite 2-L ……….. $1.10 (saved $0.69)
Fanta 2-L ………… $1.10 (saved $0.69)
$70.76

Groceries: $70.76; Out-of-house-spending: $4 on pop early in the week + $10 at Dunkin Donuts (this was all cash so I’m estimating); Total: $84.76

Groceries: $70.94; Out-of-house-spending: $4 on pop early in the week + $10 at Dunkin Donuts (this was all cash so I’m estimating); Total: $84.94

Our next check in will be on Friday, Nov. 21. I didn’t expect to do any more groceries until that day, but I’ve already realized we forgot milk and bottled water. And we likely will need more meat to get through the meals I have planned. We’ve talked about doing one vegetarian day each week to save money, but I haven’t gathered recipes to try there yet (and again, we’re moving, comfort food dammit!).

This weekend, we realized that T prefers evaporated milk over creamer, which is a huge savings opportunity as far as her coffee consumption. But it makes me feel even guiltier about my on-going pop consumption. I’ve been cutting back and I still haven’t drank caffeine since Aug. 17. But I really enjoy the sugary convenience of a bottle of pop. It’s my weakness. We’ve been buying bottled water and that has helped. But I’ll be the first to admit: I’m a sugar addict.

Meanwhile, I had a coupon for Pasta Sides and they were part of Meijer’s 10 for $10 this week. It’s one we normally avoid (it contains MSG, but I’ve been wanting it and it’s been a rough week, so I let myself buy (and eat already) comfort food.

Two-week meal plan

There’ve been some changes to my schedule at work, so this meal plan crack at the new format. I now have Sundays and Mondays off, and on Saturdays the family is going to bring me food at work so we can have dinner together after the first edition closes.

We’re going to try to go out to dinner with T’s mom every other Sunday, in addition to their current Wednesday night dinners. Dinners on Sunday and Monday will be something the little one and I cook together (he’s really starting to enjoy cooking). Tuesday and Thursday lunches will be leftovers and dinners will be something simple I can make ahead for us. Wednesday, I eat leftovers and they go out to eat with T’s mom. Friday is a bit of a haul for me at work now, so I’m not sure what’s going to be happening there. Saturday mornings are simple portable meals to bring to the market/eat in the car, with a make-ahead meal in the slow cooker or oven that they can bring me at work. Somewhere in here we are aiming for one day a week with no meat (although at this point eggs are on the table because we get them so cheap).

(S)
Lunch with mom
Dinner: Slow Cooker Short Ribs (I’m actually making 2 lbs of short ribs, but I’m making them in the oven, so I’m using the full amount of sauce.) with canned beans.
(M)
Lunch: Sandwiches
Dinner: Sticky Pomegranate Chicken and Butternut Squash
(T)
Lunch: Egg Fritters and Bacon couscous
Dinner: Leftovers
(W)
Lunch: Lasagna (Made Saturday and stored)
T&D have dinner with Mom
Dinner for me: Leftovers
(R)
Lunch: Sandwiches and salad
Dinner: Leftovers
(F)
Lunch: Hamburgers? and pasta
(S)
Lunch: Bagel pizzas
Dinner: Roasted Chicken (at work)

(S)
Lunch with mom
Dinner:
(M)
Dinner: Steak and Mushroom Fajitas
(T)
Lunch: Egg dish
(W)
Lunch: Veggie stir fry
T&D have dinner with Mom
Dinner for me: Leftovers
(R)
Lunch: Leftovers
(F)
Lunch: Nested Eggs
(S)
Lunch: Lazy tacos
Dinner: (at work)

The other method T has asked me to attempt is to list what meals we want to make and let them fall where they will in the weeks. I like having it plotted out because I can see where we might not have enough food planned for the whole week. But here’s the other way to do it:

Week 1:
– Slow cooker shirt ribs
– Sticky pomegranate chicken
– Lasagna
– Egg Fritters and Bacon Couscous
– Sandwiches and salad
– Hamburgers and pasta
– Bagel Pizzas

Week 2:
– Steak and Mushroom Fajitas
– Nested Eggs
– Veggie stir fry
– Lazy tacos
– Sandwiches and salad

As you can see, I think we need two more meals in the second week to hit my goal of 7 planned meals each week. I imagine that much of that will be pantry raiding as we prepare to move again.

Have I mentioned enough times that we’re moving again? Ugh.

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