How We Keep Groceries Affordable and in Budget with Inflation
Inflation simply means things are becoming more expensive. The supply and demand balance are out of whack and we cannot change that. Sigh. We have seen downturns in our economy in the past and experience does tell us that they do pass. We do need to weather the storm. During these times we need to adjust expectations and either make more money or adjust our budgets to accommodate our priorities.
Here are a few tips that may help you through the rough patch:
1. Don't just show up to the grocery store - give yourself a budget.
Decide beforehand how much you will spend per month. It is a known fact that if we send people to the grocery store with cash they actually spend less. Cash creates enough fear that you don’t want to get to the check out and not have enough, so you spend less.
One trick I have used in the past when things are tight is to break down my budget amounts into weekly budgets. Getting less food more often provides a small refreshment and reduces the anxiety that we will run out of food.
2. Meal Plan
Decide beforehand what meals you're going to make. Sit down and take inventory of what you have in the house and how it can be used in a meal this week. Then check the flyers or specials for the week and then fill in the blanks. By having a plan, you also provide yourself with a few less “What's for supper?” from the family.
3. Online Grocery shopping or consider joining a food purchasing club.
Online grocery shopping is super nice because you can see the running budget as you buy your groceries - and pick up is super convenient! You can also keep a running cart; if you run out of something add it to your cart for next week.
Food purchasing clubs are available in most areas. If you are here in Saint John, I would recommend the produce purchasing club that is run out of St. Joes. They offer 2 price points, $15.00 and $25.00. The amount received is way more than you could purchase at the store. For more information check out their Facebook page Saint John Food Purchasing Club.
4. Be consistent
Meal plan and order groceries the same day each week, so you don't get desperate. During lean times having a routine and sticking to the plan will reduce your anxiety and give you peace of mind. Your family will soon learn the routine.
No matter how small or large your mountain of money is how you spend it matters. If you have questions please reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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