Wednesday, 11 January 2012

The 2012 Frugal Challenge Begins!

And so we begin. My husband, Eddie, is paid on the 15th of each month. This makes things harder, I feel. We MUST be frugal or we'll run out of money by the 10th and have to eat pasta night and day if I don't get this right.

After bugging Eddie for the budget - what I can spend after ALL the bills: Carol's afterschool activities (ballet, swimming and afterschool fun club), Al's nanny, the rent, household bills (water, electric, TV/internet, heat, TV license, council tax), money to pay the credit card down and the other little incidentals (Oyster cards, etc.) it doesn't leave a lot of money for anything else. We've budgeted

£50 a week for groceries is what I'm going to try and do. This must include all meat, milk, diapers, wipes, snacks, eggs, cereal, bread, etc. for four people a week. We have been spending around $90 a week since we moved here. That means all sweets, fancy coffee, crisps, giant cuts of high choice meats (farewell rack of lamb and big steaks) and all the little things I have been splurging on have got to go.

I'm seriously impressed with a few bloggers. Look at what A Want Not A Need found! Astounding! All that for seriously reduced prices.   Also, Frugal Wife in Fife did a nice round up of the rising costs of Value products. I've seen some other bargain hunters and I'm absolutely determined to find roasts marked down from £10 to £2. I won't rest until I do.

How I plan to achieve this until I am savvy enough to 'wing' it, is planning. My meal plans don't always include meat and if they do - they include less expensive cuts with more inventive cooking. Since my month runs from the 15th instead of the 1st. I'm gearing up for my first plan. Wish me luck.

I would seriously love to hear how people manage to find bargains here. I belong to all the saving clubs at the different stores. I gather all the vouchers from Sainsburies and Tesco as well. Not sure what to do with all my points/savings yet. I have so much to learn I feel completely overwhelmed. Any help or thoughts is VERY appreciated.

Stay tuned for my struggles and successes (or failures).


  1. You'll do just fine on 50 a week, you'll soon pick up where the bargains are to be found. Even without relying on reductions, there's some good value meat offers in the supermarkets in England (3 packs for a tenner and so forth), so you should find it ok. And a few meat free meals in the budget don't hurt either.

    Check out Approved Food, they're short dated stock people, they change stock regularly but often have a fair few pantry staples at good prices and offers on postage.

    Good luck!

  2. Hi
    have a look at this site
    Martin Lewis Moneysaving expert.You will find loads of tips for groceries, recipes , coupons you can print off.I have reduced my grocery bill drastically by doing this
    hope it helps

  3. It's hard to bring your grocery spend down but you develop a good nose for bargains in a fairly short time. I stopped shopping at the 'Big 3' supermarkets for my main shop in January 2011 and go to Lidl now. The fruit, veggies, meat and cold meat/sausage selections are really good quality and very reasonable. Plus there isn't the wide choice of the other supermarkets, therefore less temptation to splurge. Shopping at Lidl has been great in keeping my costs down!

    K xx

  4. Just found your blog. First of all - well done for becoming a frugaler. One of my top tips is to get a slow cooker and use it. I use mine all the time. Plus I bought it at a carboot sale for £4.50. It cooks the cheaper cuts of meat you talk about beautifully.

    1. Hello great blog !! We've just become Aldi converts after shopping at Tesco and Sainsburys for years, our first bill last week was £25 cheaper than Tesco!! I've also started buying toiletires, cleaning products etc from Home Bargains


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