Sunday, January 22, 2012

January Pantry Challenge Update #3

This week marks the fourth and final full week of the January Pantry Challenge.  For updates on previous weeks, click here and here.

This past week I spent roughly $50 on groceries, buying mostly fruit, dairy, and canned beans.  It is really UNBELIEVABLE how expensive food is!  Even though I only bought the bare minimum of what I thought we needed for the week, I still spent considerably more than I'd wanted, and I didn't even buy any meat! 

We've eaten up almost everything in the fridge, so there was a bit of a struggle to find lunch a few days there. But we subsisted nicely on bean and cheese burritos with fruit: our favorite, never-fail, fall-back meal. Besides the fridge, the pantry and freezer are both becoming pretty sparse.  I made a batch of chicken stock this past week, which is filling up a good bit of the freezer, but the meat and frozen veggies are definitely dwindling.  The pantry challenge couldn't have happened at a better time for us because we're leaving Tuesday to make our way to Orlando. {Did I mention we're going to Disney World?  We're so excited!}  But I hate to leave food in the fridge, so I'm glad most of it will be gone before we're off. 

Let's recap my goals for this January Pantry Challenge:

(1) To reduce grocery spending.  Doing good here!  We were down about $25 this week from what we usually spend.

(2) To use up what food we have on hand.  I have already had to start re-stocking, so we are doing good here, too.

(3) To keep a running inventory of all the food in the pantry, fridge, and freezer.  This goal has been the biggest challenge for me.  I keep my inventory worksheets in my household notebook, which is usually in my bedroom, so when I use up a food, I often forget to write it down.  Either I need to move my notebook to the kitchen or tape the inventories in my pantry where they are readily available.  Because I'm really working hard at decluttering, I am thinking option number 1 is the best choice.

All in all, this pantry challenge has been a success in terms of saving money at the grocery store and being resourceful.  Plus, I'm learning to make do with what I've got instead of running out to the store every time I need an extra ingredient.  It's been an excellent lesson in discipline for sure! 

If you're taking a Pantry Challenge at your house, how's it going?

Blessings to you!

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