Thursday, April 01, 2010

April Challenge: How Low can you go?

Cindy's Porch are having a How Low can you go? challenge during April. I'm going to join in as things are rather tight financially at the moment. That's one of the joys of working for yourself I guess :) We do have money set aside in our Emergency Fund but I don't want to dip into that unless I have to.

My main money leak currently seems to be food - both takeaway and ducking to the shops to buy a couple of things... which turns into $50 worth of stuff you didn't really need..

I just did an inventory on the freezer - I have 19 meals worth of meat in there. There are 29 dinners left to make in April - we should be able to get a night of leftovers each week, and another night of meatless / low meat each week, so that brings it to 27. Close enough!

So my challenge is to not buy food other than eggs, fruit & vege, bread & milk. I can get bread & milk quite cheaply at the local servo, and I've just signed up to get a box of fruit & vege delivered weekly (they sell local free-range eggs as well). My incentive with that is to try and be forced to cook and eat more veges. All going well, I shouldn't need to step foot in the supermarket all month.

The other part of the challenge will be to not spend anything unless its already budgeted for.

Wish me luck :)

15 comments:

Risa said...

Last year I spent quite a bit of time getting our financial house in order. We've got the same 'leak': food! Groceries, a quick take-out meal here, pick up a coffee there... holy cow it adds up. I found the advice of Gail Vaz-Oxlade (star of a TV show called Til debt Do Us Part, which I think plays in AU as well) invaluable. She's totally down to earth, and has lots of helpful resources on her website, like the interactive budget ("build a budget") and "life pie." (The pie tells you how much you are spending in different areas, along with targets. So housing should run you 35% of your income; transportation 15%, savings 10%, debt repayment (not including mortgage) no more than 15% and everything else 25%.) Our numbers don't match exactly, but it was a really helpful exercise to figure out where our money was going, and what was causing us stress. We too are a self-employed family.

Anyways, I've got a link to her blog on my blog, or your could just google for her website. Hope it helps! And good luck with the stretching!

Danielle said...

Wow! I am so impressed that you have an emergency fund AND a stockpile of meat. Way to go! Keep us updated!

jugglingpaynes said...

Good luck! I'm not sure I would be able to do that kind of challenge, especially with a teenage boy in the house!

Peace and Laughter!
Cristina

karisma said...

The problem I have with this is that no matter how much we cut back and go back to basics, they keep putting the prices up on everything else. We don't eat a lot of meat around here, so I would hate to see our food bills if we did. We do however eat lots of fruit and veg, which can get pretty expensive as well.

Good Luck!

Oh PS. Funny you should mention this as just yesterday I was thinking about posting some cheap vegie meal recipes. (If I can find the time of course! LOL)

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

Interesting challenge, I'll have to check it out.

Home Educator's Helper said...

We've got a HEAP of cucumbers that we aren't going to be able to eat. Feel free to pop in as you are going past and grab some.

Kez said...

Thanks Mel. Are you still overcome with cucumbers??! :)

Renelle said...

I love this idea Kez, I'm going to do it with you! Challenge is on.

Renelle said...

Who did you get Fruit and Vege through?

3anklebiters said...

good luck! i was wondering, can you have chicks/chooks of your own? many families here have 2-3 hens in their backyard. they are super easy to keep.

Kez said...

Renelle - I'm getting the fruit & vege through Sally and Patricks. http://sallynpatricks.com.au/welcome. I'm not sure if they deliver where you are.

3anklebiters - nope, no chooks here. Hubby's not keen :(

Renelle said...

We used to get delivery before we moved up here but they don't deliver this way. They usually have good quality produce. Thanks

mum+dad=akira and linkin and elijah said...

Sounds like a great idea. I was only thinking today that we seem to spend a fortune on food and it will only increase as these boys grow.

Good luck!!

Nikki said...

Go you! We're doing a similar thing atm, and are basically on a no spend outside of the budgeted items for the next 6mths. I'm about 2mths in and doing well.

Missy said...

I haven't been reading blogs (or working on my own) for awhile...so I missed the start of this. However, I think I will join you today. I'm already running low on funds in my food budget, and it's only 5 days after pay day!!
So, here's to a good rest of the month!! :)