I’ve found another rotation to save. This is a justification, really–a glorified version of procrastination for the bubbly Type B personalities among us (like me). And it might just save you a bundle.
Once a Week Grocery Shopping
I used to run to the grocery store several times a week along with regular outings to the drugstores, Target, and Walmart. I really had no idea how much money I was spending pursuing all of the “deals.”
To keep better track of my spending, I limited myself to once a week shopping. In advance, I line up all my coupons and abide by a pre-set budget. I initially picked Tuesday as my magical shopping day (because my husband had the day off). It made a difference, because I had to decide what was a true deal to our family. I also came to terms with the fact that many things on my list really weren’t necessities and sometimes had to be eliminated.
Round Up The Schedule
I wanted to find even more savings, but it seemed so hard to cut the budget any further. Then it dawned on me to shift my store schedule. Every other week, I wait 8 days to do my shopping. One week, my shopping day is Tuesday. The next week I wait an extra day until Wednesday to head to the store. I have to be very conscientious of the necessities, but I’ve found that, relatively speaking, this just affects us towards the end of the week. It seems we can always eek out one extra day, even if we don’t have enough creamer for the coffee or dessert after dinner on day 8.
A Practical Schedule Requires Flexibility
At first I had to make some substitutions in meal preparations and baking. Once I ran out of eggs on the 8th day after beginning to make banana bread. After a quick Internet search, I found out you could use a combination of vinegar and baking soda if you’re short an egg. Dodged a bullet there–no extra trip needed! As I’m shopping and add up the purchases, I find there are a few items I usually leave off my grocery list now to make sure we can purchase an extra day’s worth of essentials. This was the simplest savings switch I’ve made to date, but it makes a substantial difference in the checkbook balance.
See the Savings
I have calculated I save about one-eighth (or 12.5 percent) of my grocery budget. A more disciplined shopper could save even more by stretching the schedule every other week to nine days. I’m working towards that so that I can get a week of groceries each year for “free,” all with a simple rotation.
This has been a guest post by Bethany of Federal Way, WA.
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