My Spending Diet: Week Five

| April 16, 2010 | 3 Comments

Sometimes you stumble. Sometimes you fall. This week was all about stumbling and falling in My Spending Diet. As I mentioned last week, it was the first time where my kids had to do the big weekly shop with me. It turned out to be harder (on me) than I anticipated. Add in an intensely busy workweek and an otherwise crazy schedule, and I just was off. Really, really off.

First, as a reminder:

The Plan: No spending from Saturday until the following Saturday. Cash in wallet can only be used in a true emergency.

What Happened: On Saturday, the kids and I hit two stores and got most of the stuff we needed. I had trouble finding the pork shoulder that was to comprise two of this weeks meals. In the end, I didn’t end up buying quite everything we needed on Saturday.

On Tuesday, after consulting with Twitter experts, I discovered that pork butt could be used (apparently, the butt can be part of the shoulder … in a pig, at least) and I knew where to find that. We never found the taco shells I wanted for Friday’s dinner (it’s hard to locate ones without those partially hydrogenated ingredients that I avoid). But that’s okay, because we ended up ordering pizza last night.

While I didn’t go overboard with spending, I did not limit spending to Saturday as I have in previous weeks. And due to an event tomorrow, I will be hitting up the grocery store for some supplies tonight too.

As far as My Spending Diet goes, I was totally off the wagon this week.

Spending: My spending remained down this week. Coupons helped keep costs to a minimum, but I feel like I have less of a handle on my spending since I didn’t limit it as I have in previous weeks.

What’s Next: My Saturday shop will be on Sunday this week. It’s also spring break for us this week. Rather than stressing myself out about adhering strictly to the rules, I am going to lighten up this week and budget for some fun. Also, my focus is shifting: I just want to spend less … so next Friday may focus more on cost-cutting measures.

Cost Cutting for This Week: I plan to use coupons again this week to cut costs and also shop the sale fliers. I want to focus our meals on more inexpensive options, while keeping with our passion for good food. It can be done. For activities, I am going to look into free options but not limit us to them. After all, I want my kids to enjoy life and sometimes really fun things do cost money.

Photo credit: mconnors from

Category: Budget Eating, Feeding Kids, meal planning, This Week, Thoughts

About the Author ()

Sarah Walker Caron is a writer, editor and recipe developer who loves to create delicious recipes the whole family can enjoy together. Her work has appeared in countless publications including iVillage, BELLA NYC Magazine, Yum for Kids magazine and more. She lives in Maine with her two food-loving kids.

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  1. My Spending Diet: Week Six | Sarah’s Cucina Bella :: Family Food | April 23, 2010
  1. Viktoria says:

    You are so ambitious. I find it too stressful to use coupons and I even shop without a membership/discount card in a lot of stores while I try to look at the comparative prices of things. (At the register I just smile when they ask me for my card and I say “oh, I don’t have it with me today”)

    I end up shopping Walmart a lot because it’s close and they are open late – most stores I used to like to go to now close at 9 p.m. while Walmart has extended its hours till midnight. What’s up with that?

    The problem is I convince myself Walmart is cheaper so I buy more stuff instead and end up with lots of crap I don’t need (chips, cookies…) and they never sell fruits and veggies, so that still drives me to the regular stores…

    It’s so tough being a grown-up! I want someone else to shop and cook for me again!

  2. Beverly says:

    I love that you’re doing this. I gave up spending extra money for Lent one year, and it was really eye opening. Since then, I occasionally have to go on “mini-fasts” to reel things in when I get too Starbucks-happy, but it’s amazing what a pivotal point that was. As for groceries and weekly management, I definitely shop with the circulars and shop for a whole week at once. I love it because it really cuts down on my running around during the week, and I can look forward to certain dishes and plan in a variety of foods. I also find that I eat more veggies and fruits when I stock up and plan to eat them. I also do give myself an allowance that is kept in cash. Once I’m out, I’m out!

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