May 22, 2010

can I get some help blogland?

I was talking to my friend the other day about budgets and such. She and her husband (this that the proper grammar?) taught our Financial Peace University class in Feb 2009. If we were graded on our use of FPU we would get an F well maybe a C- lately since we loosely using a budget. Shhh don't tell her that!

Hubby makes decent money. But we always seem to have more week at the end the of the paycheck no matter how we budget. I don't get it. We don't have credit cards. We try not to go out to eat. Our only debt is the house payment. I quit running to the grocery store nightly thanks to better planning during grocery shopping day. We do fill up our SUV once a week every week but that will slow down this summer while extra school activities are closed. We keep the air set a bit higher and run fans. I add vinegar to my fabric softener and cut the laundry soap with water to stretch them farther.

We do all the things people say will reduce spending...

So where does it all go?

What is the normal food budget for a family of 5?
How can I cut the grocery bill without changing over to more processed foods?
Does gardening really save money?
I know there is using coupons but I can't see spending money to buy a newspaper then driving to 5 different stores to save a few $$. I don't live near a lot of shops that take coupons.

I was growing a garden but the seeds died from the temp extremes we had. Hubby is not sure how a garden will save money when we have to buy dirt, seeds, plants, water (a LOT cause summers are dry had scorching hot here), mulch, ect. He is all for healthy eating he just wants to see where it really saves the wallet.

I buy the main bulk of groceries once a month at Costco. I spend around $500-600 ever 5-6 wks depending on if we need tp, paper towels or laundry products. I now just have to pick up milk and bread weekly. So far we cut our grocery bill down but it still seems high. I started making our own bread which is healthier but it doesn't seem cheaper. On occasion we get free farm fresh eggs and veggies from friends and neighbors but I don't count that as "needed".

We run the numbers with the FPU budget sheets and we "see" the extra money on paper it just doesn't go into the bank account. sigh. According to the "budget" we should live on half what Hubby makes. uh HELLO! That is huge! We could take vacations or go on missions, finish remodeling the house, pay off the house faster, finally get into foster care.

big sigh

If the budget worked as good in the bank as it does on paper we would be debt free in under 2 yrs!

I just do NOT get it.


  1. try keeping a log of everything you spend. Even the starbucks coffee and donuts add up. whatever you spend write it down and start watching what you are spending on and what you can cut out. Would it be more beneficial to find a new way to do what your doing? Also I use a chart for paying my bills each week. When the bill comes in I put it down on the list of what week it is getting paid. Hope that helps!

  2. For making bread there is Amish White Bread, flour, yeast, sugar, oil, salt and water. If you are buying things at costco in bulk then the cost of making the bread shouldn't be that bad.

    There is shopping at place like Aldi or Save A Lot. I personally will not buy meat at Aldi (or Save A Lot) , but I do buy milk, cheese, other dairy, some fresh produce and canned goods, unless I happen to be at Sam's Club (We don't have a costco here).

    I buy our meat either Sam's or local Kroger store. It just depends on where I need to go. Sam's is bit of a drive for me, so I'll go if I need cleaners, dog food, and/or paper products. While there I'll buy the other stuff. In the off weeks I'll buy at aldi and Kroger. They are closer to my home. I spend anywhere from $50-200 on any given shopping trip. ($200 is if I'm out at Sams). We are a family of 4. I just spent $58 at Aldi and $22 at Kroger. I have enough to last me for the next 7-10 days. My average is about $500 a month for my family.

    I also have been around the web enough to know that location, location, and cost of living really has to do with it. Here a loaf of store brand bread is 75 cents and a gallon of milk is $2.00 I have no idea what you are paying for those things.


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it makes me feel HAPPY!
I do not like SPAM so don't waste your's or my time :(

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