It seems I am on a time theme this week and, so, I must be!
Don and I are attending the Dave Ramsey "Financial Peace University" program at a local church. It has been so interesting and we have been thrilled to learn that we do a lot of things "right." And, it has inspired us to do "better." The nicest folks are at the meetings which makes it so fun. And, it is somehow heartening to know that we are all working to improve not only our lives, but also those of our children by teaching them how to live a debt-free life.
Sunday night we were discussing budgeting and the topic of groceries came up.
"How," posed on participant, "do you ever begin to develop a budget for food? I can't do it! There is just no way to manage it!"
One member responded, "I use coupons."
And, several of us joined in giving testimony to the power of couponing and using e-coupons as well.
"I just don't have time!" the questioner shouted. "I can't go buy a newspaper and then find time to cut out coupons. Besides, most of the coupons are for things I just don't use!"
Another member started to explain how to get coupons online, but the questioner didn't want to hear it.
"I don't have time!" she responded emphatically. "I just don't have time!"
Now, let me explain here that she fosters three children and doesn't work a "public" job as the rest of us in the group do. All three children go to school or day care and she is home alone all day.
I tried to tell her how I do it; I make a menu, check the cupboards, and make my list. And, when the budget is getting low, we quit shopping for anything except necessities. She cut me off and very loudly said, "I don't have time! I am too busy!"
At that moment it hit me: choices. Our successes or failures stem from the choices we make every minute of every day. I choose to spend two hours a week working on budgeting, groceries, menus, and so forth. And, I usually save between $30-$40 per grocery trip. The way I look at it, I just earned $15-$20 per hour. I'll take it!
How do you manage your grocery budget? Do you have tricks to help you stretch those smaller dollars?