and the $ for the disney pot is…


so…how ’bout those toronto blue jays??

have you made plans for the weekend, yet?

what’s going to be the blockbuster movie of the summer??

haha, i’m just being a tease and prolonging the announcement of the may grocery bill total.

care to make your guess??

ok, here we go…

after calculating and rechecking my work, the may grocery bill total is….


wow. by yesterday, i did suspect that i was under my $400 target, but i am honestly surprised at this low figure.

a few points of explanation:

~ let’s say that i stole *borrowed*/was granted $100 worth of free food from my various sources since may 1st [and i do think i am being overly generous with this guesstimate]. that means that i still came in well under my usual monthly average for grocery spending.

~ my cupboards are BARE right now. like, i rival old mother hubbard. my first post-may grocery shopping weekend is going to be H-U-G-E and expensive!

~ just for fun, i tallied how much money i spent on carbonated water and coffee this month. the total? $54.81. that amount represents almost 20% of my total grocery bill.

what i am going to do with my excess money:

$120 seems like a lot to put into my disney fund. so, i am going to do r.a.o.k. #4 [i will share what #3 was in the june 9th monthly recap post] and buy 42 jars of baby food and donate them to the food bank [i like to take action and buy things rather than write cheques, that is just my style, and children’s nutrition holds a soft spot in my ♥] then whatever $ is left over will be set aside for the disney trip.

two realizations:

~ salad ingredients are non-negotiable items! lettuce must be a household staple!

~ you need to be observant when paging through the weekly store flyers – not every featured item is on sale! let’s take last week’s valumart flyer to pick on as an example:

these products ARE on sale! note that the sale price and the savings amount are highlighted.

these items are NOT on sale – they are simply new items that valumart wants to bring to your attention!

final thoughts:

~ you CAN shop on a budget, eat healthy, and avoid a diet of chef boyardee and kraft dinner; however, you must be flexible in what you are willing to purchase. for example: with vegetables, you may need to sub in frozen for fresh, or change brand names, or switch up the fresh veggies that you choose to put in your shopping basket.

~ you also need to be willing to travel from store to store to hit major bargains. how valuable is your time vs the amount of money you will save?

~ stock up on non-perishables like cereal and peanut butter when you see a super price – as long as you have the storage space!


over the past few weeks, i have been composing a mental list of groceries that i am chomping at the bit to buy!

  • maranatha peanut butter and/or maranatha almond butter
  • protein powder [will pick up at work on saturday]
  • tofu and tempeh
  • veggie burgers [fran, this one is all thanks to you!]
  • all three flavours of puffins that are available in canada – that would be original, cinnamon and peanut butter [ooo, this purchase has a question mark after it because how can i justify $4.79 per box for puffins – and they are very small boxes, at that – with all the major cereal sales going on?? i may have to think on this one]
  • a new shampoo that does not make me look like the “before” photo in a hair-care advert [i am thinking a grapfruit scent from body shop would be oh-so-nice for the summer].


tomorrow, i work until 6 pm at theOTHERstore, then here is the evening’s entertainment plan for after that (about which i am entirely gleeful!!):

~ go to sears and take advantage of the lancôme special offer of goodies if you spend $45 or more [ok, this has absolutely nothing to do with groceries, but it is the #1 stop on my agenda].

~ go to food basics and buy many things.

~ go home, then head out to the health food store and valumart and shoppers and buy many things.

i do not think i will make it to friday night knitting club!

i have a feeling that by the time i add up the receipts from all of these stops, we could be close to matching may’s grocery total!!

**for the record, every grocery item i bought this month was on sale – i did not cheat!

any grocery shopping lessons that YOU have learned that you can add to the list, above?? as dad would say, all things in moderation. that is the biggest lesson i am taking away from my great may grocery challenge!!

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  • Nicole  On May 31, 2012 at 8:58 pm

    Mucho impressivo, Cathy. Wow- that’s some good savings.
    I think you should buy your shampoo at Winners/Home Sense. You can buy some really good salon brand stuff in those massive bottles. They last forever and they’re a fraction of the price. It also leaves your hair feeling normal and not straw-like. Since you eat a lot of salad, you can make your own dressing- we always make ours: olive oil, balsamic, crushed garlic, lemon juice… yum!!
    Keep shopping at FB- that place will save you a whack load of moula!

    • 1970kikiproject  On June 1, 2012 at 6:01 am

      thanks, nicole! you are brilliant with your suggestion of winners/home sense – i forgot about that option! oh, i am a fb convert, for sure. that place is golden!!

  • Stacie  On May 31, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Congrats on such a successful challenge! Seems like you did better as well as learned more than anticipated! Win-win!

    • 1970kikiproject  On May 31, 2012 at 12:11 pm

      thanks, stacie! yes – you know, now i want to try the project again, making a few changes from what i learned this past month….although NOT right away – i need a break!!

  • Lisa  On May 31, 2012 at 8:28 am

    Holy cow! You did awesome with this challenge!! That is seriously impressive!

    I’d be spending money all over the place in June if I were you—sort of a budget detox…lol.

    Glad you found this to be such a good experience, and you even get to do a bonus raok because of it!!

    • 1970kikiproject  On May 31, 2012 at 9:05 am

      haha, lisa, you read my mind. i have a feeling that june is going to be *nasty* in terms of the grocery budget…i love that term “budget detox” – i am all excited just thinking, “i CAN buy x tomorrow, regardless of price or if it’s on sale!” it was a really interesting project, and i am glad i tried out this method of shopping!

  • Fran@ Broken Cookies Don't Count  On May 31, 2012 at 7:51 am

    Cathy, you just made me think of something that I don’t usually utilize. I think that in our area, many of the grocery stores have web sites that show what’s on sale. I don’t always have the paper sale ads available. One more way to see what the sale items are. That will save on gas…don’t go somewhere if what you want isn’t on sale. I like that! GREAT job on the grocry challenge! I think I will track it for June, just to see what I come up with. Then when we get to NM in July, I can track for the time that we’re there. If I save money, that can be something else I can “nudge” Ralph with regarding getting to NM SOON!!

    • 1970kikiproject  On May 31, 2012 at 9:07 am

      excellent idea, fran, re looking online…i bet our area stores do that, too. better to plan at home than waste time and money driving around! yes yes – track june!!! and do start a nm fund!! 🙂

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