In this last part of Cutting Your Food Costs, I'll teach you to Have More With Less. But let's first review our list of tips.
Tip #1-- Set a reasonable food budget. (Plan your menu, so you always have a venue.)
Tip #2-- Look deeply into your provisions. (Eat up what's old before it gets mold.)
Tip #3-- Involve your family. ( Ask others what they'll eat; then give them those tasty treats.)
Tip #4-- Employ the pantry principle. (Keep only two --of each pantry item in view.)
Tip #5-- Give. (Give to God His 10% due, and 90% blessed will He return to you.)
Tip #6-- Save. (When you give to the poor, God will always give you more.)
So let's take a look at our last two tips--#7 Have More, #8 With Less.
Tip #7--Have More
What does it mean to have more? More of what? Well, more foodstuffs with less money. And how do you do that? If you don't shop the big warehouse stores like Costco, one good place is to shop generic. Grocers place the most expensive items at eye level, so get into the habit of stooping and bending when you shop. You'll find the best prices. Also, vary your family meals by serving a meatless meal of beans and rice for at least two nights a week. Personally, I believe that eating simple foods such as a vegetarian meal helps us become more aware of eating small with a poverty awareness. And finally, buy real goods such as real butter and real foods--not packaged, prepared ones. Genuintastes better and promotes good health.
Tip #8--With Less
Now by less, the idea is to simplify. Simplify your life by NOT GOING INTO GROCERY STORES, unless needed. Every trip you take to the store jacks up your overall food budget, for the average shopper spends more than planned every time he or she walks through a supermarket's doors. A medical doctor the other day shared that she saves money by shopping for groceries online. Dr. Benjamin stated, "I save at least $100 every time I don't go into the grocery store but order from the store's website and pick it up."
Have less of other things too. Don't eat desserts except on birthdays or for company. Use a bread machine to make bread and pizza dough. Second-hand bread machines abound. Also, concentrate on as much home-made as possible, and prioritize eating together as a family at home. Further, limit your paper products by using a dishrag instead of a paper towel and a cloth napkin in a marked holder for each family member. Likewise, skip fancy cleaning products or try this simple one for everything. (Listed below.) And while you are doing with less, avoid eating out as much as possible. That activity alone jacks up anyone's food budget. Live simply so that others may simply live.
Learning to slash your food costs is not difficult if you face it as a fun challenge, which it is. The greatest part of having more with less is that it teaches your children how to do the same, and this is a valuable skill to pass on for financial survival. Start with these 8 tips and learn to live on less to give and save more.
The Frugal Catholic's Homemade Cleanser
Use a gallon jug and fill it with one container of rubbing alcohol, 1 cup of vinegar, 1 cup of ammonia, and water to fill. Put the solution in a spray bottle and use it for everything.
Get creative with your meals.
Martha Wild King, M. Ed., Author
The Frugal Catholic: Learn to live on less to give and save more