Grocery Geek: July’s End

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grocerygeek-gceThis rounds out the grocery shopping for the month of July. As you know, we took two weeks to try to chip away at the supplies. I think we did pretty well.

I was able to completely empty the deep freeze, transfer what was left to the refrigerator, and then thaw it out. It’s sitting empty for the moment until I get a chance to fill it with freezer meals.

Or rather, my husband and boys have a chance to fill it. They’re game to do it, we just need to make the plans.

So, here’s how the grocery shopping ended this month:

july ralphs


At Ralphs I picked up eggs, milk, some produce, pepperoni, yogurt, tortillas, and yes, mayonnaise. Best Foods (Hellman’s) was on sale.

And even though I can make my own mayonnaise, I found that we weren’t able to use even those small batches up before they went bad. So, we’ve gone back to the good old standby for now. But, I’m glad that I know how to make the real deal!

Total spent: $39.93

produce box

Abundant Harvest Organics

I only purchased two produce boxes this month. This is the second. It had peppers, corn, onions, melon, beans, peaches, nectarines, broccoli, squash, tomatoes, and rosemary.

Total spent: $38



At Sprouts I grabbed lots of fresh produce, including blueberries that were on a great sale.

Total spent: $25.08

Ralphs again

Sorry, no picture. I went back at the end of the ten days for coffee, chicken, milk, eggs, oh and ice cream. 😉

Total spent: $48.34

Weekly/10day total = $151.35

Monthly total= $546.22

Let’s look at the year as a whole:

January $451
February $1028
March $954
April $799
May $798
June $907
July $546

Monthly average = $783.29

For those of you just tuning in, my monthly target is $800/month.

$783.28 is what we’re currently averaging. That’s what we’re spending on regular meals on average each month. Keep in mind: We have a separate dining out budget. Toiletries and cleaning supplies don’t go toward this total. I don’t count the delivery charge for the produce box, either. (And sometimes when I develop recipes for cookbooks or other projects, I don’t use grocery money to do that. What if it’s a bomb?)

We’re feeding eight people, aged 4, 6, 9, 11, 12, 16, 41, and 50. We live in San Diego. And we don’t buy much in the way of processed foods. My youngest daughter is allergic to peanuts.

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  1. Wow, you really did amazing this month! And that AH box looks beautiful. Thanks for the continued inspiration! 🙂

  2. WAHOO!!! Great job Jessica!

  3. LOL on the mayo – I was getting low enough to try the make your own but miraculously Hellman’s went on sale here too – stocked up!

    I’m a lazy girl

    That said – awesome job this month – especially with all else going on [kids off studies, working on a book – sheesh!]

  4. I thought about you when I recently bought 2.5 dozen eggs for a dollar! Are you still “poor” on egg sales?

    • Ralphs had them for a buck a dozen, but they were definitely lower quality. I found weird bits in them.

  5. Great job! I didnt spend too much on groceries this month though I did go to Costco a couple times and its always a money pit for me. Not usually foods that get me though.. I have a love/hate relationship with that place. 🙂

    • I so hear you, Costco always wrecks my grocery budget. I did one trip there for garbage bags and kefir and I would like to say that is all I walked out with, but that is never how it works.

  6. Oh, I did spend an extra $50 on 10 organic stewing hens too. Forgot about those.. but I turned them into 11 jars of stew meat, about 32 jars of Chicken vegetable soup, and around 44 jars of bone & veg broth for my pantry.
    It was a crazy 4 day process but it’ll last me a good long while.

  7. Congrats on getting the deep freeze cleaned out. We managed to finish the month at $320 (we were shooting for 300 but I got some porkchops on sale). We are continuing on the pantry challenge through Labor Day weekend. I have a 30ish dollar grocery list for tomorrow. I shop on Fridays. Hopefully August will be under $300. Wish us luck!!!!

  8. Heather M says:

    Jessica, you are amazing! I still don’t know how you pull off $800/mo for such a nice and big family of growing kids(boys eat tons!). That’s our budget for a family of 4. Congrats on your deep freeze. Must feel good to know that everything going in will be new and fresh.

    Our month went well. Ended up spending about $376, which is less than half typical. Very very pleased. Now we are off for the month. I’ll be in your neck of the woods for a while, Jessica. Enjoying our favorite restaurants and take-out(Las Olas, Robertos, Rubios, etc) and dad’s grilled steaks w/mom’s gorgeous salads (well, and dad’s awesome breakfasts… he’s been good at that ever since I was teeny).

    Hoping to keep September low, too, but we will have to do a serious stocking up on everything fresh. There will be nothing left worth eating after a month, except cheese and maybe apples/carrots.

    Enjoy August everyone!

  9. I didn’t manage to save the amount I was hoping for to replace the money I took out to cover the work situation for my spouse(it requires him to stay in a hotel Mon-Fri) however, I did manage to get 1/2 there.($200 out of $400) I’m going to extend my own little challenge through to at least September. We do have an August baby(he’ll be 14) so I’m going to have to be creative but I figure that if I really try I should be able to have the full $400 by the end of next month. I’m hoping that even though this job requires him to be away during the week it brings a little stability to our household schedule(the other position had him on call 24/7). In the interim it’s been a challenge to try and figure out a budget for him and our household simultaneously. I’ll have one less body to feed since my oldest heads to Waynesboro to start training a new store that’s being opened and the company has him staying at a hotel for all of August(we’ll see because HIS store and the DM wants him back because he boosts their customer service numbers and are already arguing that they shouldn’t have to lose him for the full 3 weeks. Meanwhile the PRO team says that if the trainers do well then they’ll want them for opening a Lynchburg store in October. :/) I feel like a juggler these days. Things seem to change so quickly.

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