Sometimes I get so lost in my love for my children, I forget how expensive they are! I remember when I was expecting my first baby, my mom told me how much it cost to have a child. I thought she meant the initial hospital bills, equipment, clothing, diapers, and such. Um, no, not what she meant. I was so focused on that little baby that I lost sight of the long term. Now that my kids are 13 and 16, they have just gotten more expensive as each year has passed! With sports, after school activities, tech gadgets, school supplies and clothing, it is practically breaking my bank! One area they really make a huge impact is on my grocery bill, especially my 13 year old son. Boy can that kid eat and drink a lot! I have had to get a handle on my grocery bill and make some adjustments to make a dollar stretch. Here are just a few ways I have done that:
4 Ideas To Slash Your Grocery Bill
- Track Prices: This will take you a good 4-6 weeks to do, so be prepared to do some digging and comparing. Many stores will put their “sale” items out for you to get enticed by and then jack the price up he following week. You need to keep an eye on what the average price of the products your family uses often to know when there actually is a good deal going on.
- Buy On Sale: Once you track the prices and know when something is truly on sale, this is when you want to buy up. The rule of thumb is to buy when things are on sale, not when you need them. For instance, we had a great coupon for toilet paper and found the brand at a drastic price reduction. We ended up getting the toilet paper virtually free. We stocked up and now have about 12 packages of toilet paper!
- Use Coupons Properly: There is a right and a wrong way to use coupons. With the same mindset as buying on sale, use coupons to save even more on sale items. Make your grocery list and then see what coupons are offered in your circulars, online and on mobile apps. If you hit it right, some stores will honor double and triple, making many items free!
- Make It Yourself: When you are on a food budget, going out to eat is not a regular thing, but a treat instead. We have cut way back on ho often we go out to eat. We make almost every meal at home pack lunches, make our own bread and snacks and we even make our own soda! With the convenience of the easy to use SodaStream, we save hundreds on our yearly grocery bill!
I hate to spend money when I do not have to and soda was a huge money sucker for our family. We could go through several 24 packs of soda in a week. When you break that down over the course of a year, it comes up to more than $1,000 Yikes! With the SodaStream coming in at just 25 cents a can, we are saving hundreds of dollars a year on our soda alone. You can also make flavored sparkling water, which is great for me as I am cutting soda out of my diet now. I make a bottle of sparkling water and just add some ice with fresh fruit or a slice of lemon or lime. With name brands like Crystal Light, Country Time, Kool Aid and Ocean Spray, I am getting the flavors I love at a fraction of the cost. You can even make energy drinks and adult cocktails with the SodaStream system. I also love the eco friendly aspect of the process as we are using the SodaStream bottles which are reusable. No more bottles and cans going into the trash or recycle bin!
Another fact is that Americans are spending billions on bottled water thinking it is safer than bottled water. In actuality, this is not even true! With the safety and health regulations in place by our government, our tap water is completely safe for you. By using tap water for the SodaSteam, you are getting a healthy and economical product for your family. The system is so easy to use, the kids can make their favorites, we use it for guests and have given several as gifts over the years. At prices starting at $70 for the system, $17 for the CO2 and $3.50 for the flavoring, you are saving a ton. You can buy SodaStream at favorite stores like Target, Wal-mart, Best Buy and Amazon. One USA reader will win one Fountain Jet Soda Lover’s Start-Up Kit ARV $100. The kit includes one Fountain Jet, 1 carbonating bottle, reusable for up to 3 years, 1 Reusable carbonator to fizz up to 60L of soda and a variety 6-pack of popular sample-size flavors. Be sure to follow SodaStream on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
How do you get creative and cut your grocery bill?