The Accountant's Garden

Scheduled non-accounting weeks: April 10-14, 2017 June 12-16, 2017 July 24-28, 2017

Monday, January 02, 2012

It's a new year! And I have a food-and-budget-related challenge. Actually, it's more like an experiment. I am curious to see whether it really matters, budget-wise, about where you shop. I have a monthly menu plan, which I adapted from Real Simple magazine. And I am interested to see  how my monthly grocery bill adds up when I shop at various markets: Whole Foods, Lucky/Safeway, Piedmont Grocery, and perhaps Target. I'll be using the same monthly menu planner, so the comparison should be mostly equal.

A few other stipulations -- I will try to purchase most of my produce at the local farmer's market and will keep track of that expense as well. And, I will purchase household goods (soap, diapers, etc.) in a separate shopping trip, so as not to add in too many additional expenses.

This week's dinner menu:
  • Pan-roasted salmon and tomatoes with mashed potatoes and peas
  • Vegetable soup with corn muffins and green salad
  • Meat loaf with baked potatoes and green beans
  • Rosemary garlic chicken with carrots and spinach salad
  • Ratatouille with couscous
One night is reserved for leftovers or pizza. I omitted the Sunday dinner for this week (roast pork with broccoli and spaghetti). Of course, I make vegetarian exchanges for all meat but the fish. Additionally, I have to plan for breakfasts, lunches, and snacks. Here's what I have for that:
  • Sunday: pastries, quiche, salad, cheese & crackers
  • Monday: waffles, sunflower seed butter sandwiches & oranges, banana & crackers
  • Tuesday: fried egg sandwich, bologna sandwich & grapes or berries, oranges & pretzels
  • Wednesday: oatmeal with fruit & nuts, cheese sandwich & apples, grapes or berries & crackers
  • Thursday: scrambled eggs & toast, tuna salad sandwich & carrots, apples & pretzels
  • Friday: oatmeal with fruit & nuts, egg salad sandwich & banana, carrots & peanut butter
  • Saturday: waffles, eat out or make Saturday's dinner, bananas & pretzels
Today was my first week's worth of shopping at Whole Foods. The total came to $111, which isn't too bad. However, I did have some things on hand already (apples, oranges, bananas, tomatoes, crackers, cheese, pasta & rice) and the only meat I purchased was a $17 fish steak. I know I'll have to go back later in the week for more milk and bread, maybe.

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