Time for some real talk: Balancing food vs finances, quality time, and getting back to the basics.
Quality food comes at a price, that is no secret. Where is the balance in eating optimally and not breaking the bank? Does that even exist? Standing in the Whole Foods line watching my organic produce bill tally up, I wondered if I should apply for a part-time cashier job. Ever get that feeling? Everyday, I brainstorm ways to grow some of the things that I buy frequently at our apartment building in hopes to save 100$ a month. 5 dollars for a pack of half dead, black herbs? You have to be kidding me! There has to be a better way to balance food versus finances.
Being newlyweds there are all sorts of adjustments and modifications to your life that you have to make within the first few years of marriage. You, literally speaking, have to combine two separate lives. Change names, bills, addresses, passports, the list goes on and on. Somehow, my husband and I have managed to move 5 times in less than 3 years, one of those times half way across the country. Talk about adding to the to do list! What about saving? Sure, we did a lot of saving. We saved for our house in Miami (sold that!), we saved for our wedding (was amazing), we saved for our honeymoon in Italy (was even more amazing), but when your savings is robbed time and time again for first, last, security, pet deposits, movers, boxes, down payments, etc… you have to make SOME MAJOR changes in the day to day, month to month stuff to get ahead again.
We moved to Texas in mid-February. Now, the first of June, the dust has settled. Our regular monthly bills are consistent again at last, so we have spent the past several weeks analyzing our spending habits. Taking a closer look at what we can cut out and what we can’t live without. Two things that we dropped just last week, that we aren’t missing: 1) The XM radio in the Jeep that plays the same songs the FM radio does and 2) our fancy 100,000,000+ channel cable package that I watched once in the past three months. Since we have gotten Amazon Prime earlier this year, I haven’t rented an over priced movie from the cable company. Prime gives us free one and two day shipping, free movies/shows/musics/books and more! Those two cut backs alone are saving us over 60$ monthly.
We have gotten down to the details and now are starting to take a closer look at our food budget. Our new magic number is 300 dollars a week. Keep in mind I cook all three meals, 7 days a week for both of us. And feeding Superman and his primate-like powers is more like cooking for 3 people in one super hero-like body. Not to mention that I am running an Online Pie Shop as well as #TheFarmTableTestKitchen, reworking hundreds of recipes every day. So how will I manage this? It is possible, I am going to show you. 🙂
Over the next week I am going to cook AMAZING one pot meals for under $40 dollars each, with PLENTY of leftovers for lunches all week long. I will not sacrifice the quality of these meals. Instead I’ll reach into my recipe library and braise whatever big cuts of meat I find on sale. I am even going to show you how to make Organic no-knead bread in 45 minutes. Yep. All with ONE POT! **A note on bread: If you haven’t watched the food documentary called “Air” on Netflix. You need to.
Do you have the Whole Foods coupon app? It’s free, has digital coupons and lets you know what is on sale before you head off to the store. Combined with our Amazon Prime account I am going to analyze our food budget and savings. Zero sacrifices on our health while saving for our next home is the name of the game this year.
What is your household grocery budget? What are your methods for smart shopping and saving? What recipes would you like to see more of? Chicken? Fish? Stews? I made this quick survey to get to know my readers better. Please take a few moment to help me better help you. 🙂