Paycheck Chronicles

Feeding a Family of Four on $50 per Week?


Everyone is concerned about their food expenses right now.  It is a hot topic around the internet, and I was intrigued by another post with the same title as this one:  Feeding A Family of Four on $50 Per Week.  The author, Mindi of Moms Need to Know, didn't include the question mark, as she's put together a series on how it can be done.

Mindi's article series is very informative and there are many ideas that can help cut your food bill.  I expecially like how she's linked to a lot of resources, such as how to make a price book or ideas for $5 family dinners. Some of her ideas won't work for everyone, though.  I think that the military lifestyle makes some of her suggestions hard to implement.

In the first installment, she talks about her freezer and well-stocked pantry.  I agree that they are both wonderful tools, but what if you are in a teeny apartment with no space for a freezer?  And there is a limit to how sensible it is to stock up if you might be moving soon.

In all, Mindi's ideas certainly show how you can cut your grocery bills dramatically.  One thing that she doesn't talk about (yet, anyway) is her meal planning.  I know that I keep my family's grocery bills much lower when I take the time to plan our our meals each week.  By eliminating that dinnertime dilemma, I avoid expensive convenience foods and succumbing to take-out.

In addition, I try to do the bulk of my shopping at the commissary.  It isn't very convenient for me, but I try to get to the commissary every 2-3 weeks and stock up on the basics that are so much less expensive there.  I still go to the local grocery stories for fresh produce, good deals, and organic milk (which is less expensive there.)

I'm sure I cann't feed my family (of 6, or 5 for the next year) for $50 per week, but I'm sure that I can make some improvements.  How about you?

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