Grocery Shopping??

I mentioned on Tuesday how I am considering a change to my grocery budget. I had started thinking about how to make my budget work for me more a couple weeks ago. Then I read this post by Laura (she is my bff...she just doesn't know it yet) and really started thinking about making some changes.

The thing is, having a set weekly/monthly budget is great for many people. But it is difficult for me. It is not that I don't enjoy the challenge of having to stay so tightly within my budget. I do (it gives me a personal satisfaction...and plus I am a grocery nerd). And I certainly like showing that it is possible to eat a natural, whole foods diet with limited funds. But with the way I shop and where I live, shopping more like Laura works best for me.

I am slowly weaning myself off grocery stores you could say (except Earth Fare...they don't count!) in favor of more natural alternatives. Milk and produce straight from the farmer. Meat from a co-op that gets it direct from the farmer. Bulk grains from a co-op-like small health food store. Various foods from Amazon. The point is that I do not just go into one or two stores every week and check all the items off my grocery list. I also do not go to the same sources every week or even month.

I have said before that I live in the middle of nowhere. While I am conveniently located between two major cities, it still takes 35-55 minutes of mostly interstate driving to get to any of my favorite (read: decent) places to shop. I try to combine trips as much as possible, but it is not the greenest or thriftiest move to drive that far all the time. And I can only combine so many outings while shopping with a toddler.

So my grocery shopping now consists of a lot of bulk buying (whether that means 50 lb bags of wheat or just multiple bags of frozen fruit) and I hope to buy more in bulk to simplify and cut down on trips. I have been struggling with trying to juggle the budget around to leave a little wiggle room for bulk buying each month so I have decided to throw the budget out the window.

Okay, not really. Our current income only leaves a certain amount for us to comfortably spend, though our budget is set up to where we can spend a little more one month and a little less the next. So what does that mean? I will now be having expensive stock up months that will most certainly cost me over $200. But that stocking up will enable me to spend more time at home and less on the road. I will also have inexpensive months because of it. My goal is for my spending over the year to average out to about $200 a month.

Provided all my rambling makes sense, what do you think? Do you think this will change my blog at all. How about you? Do you follow a strict weekly/monthly budget or do you let it average out? 


  1. Because of how our budget is set up, I can only get up to one month's grocery money, in cash, 'up front' so that does give me a parameter I have to stay within-but that's still $340 a month that I can play around with. I just got a Costco membership and that's working out great for a once a month trip (lots of organic choices), and then I make 3-4 produce runs to Meijer each month as well.

    But, as soon as the farmers markets open up I'll be eliminating the Meijer stops and getting most of my produce from the markets :) We also have lots of U pick farms that I'll be doing this year-blueberries, strawberries, cherries, etc I can't wait for summer!!

  2. Oh the wait for U pick farms this summer is about to kill me! I don't think we have a cherry one around here though, I would love that!

    Our Costco membership actually just expired and we decided not to renew it. I have debated it, but the few things I do get there can be picked up by my sister for me. It is the farthest store away from me (almost an hour) and I just can't justify it right now. Although my opinion might change in a couple months :)

  3. I let it all average out. :) That works best for me, because we run out of foods at different times, I like to take advantage of sales, etc. It really does average out. I also can't imagine having to keep track of exactly how much you're putting in the cart! I've done that once or twice, and it's a pain (for me). Good post!



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