Friday, April 09, 2010

Menu Planning and Saving Money!!

As a stay at home mom of two young children living on one income I am always looking for ways to save money.  Chris and I would love it if I could stay home full time until the kids are both in school and even then I will most likely only work a part time job. Since this is something we as a family have decided I do everything I can to save the money that Chris makes. Chris is a pastor and as some of you may already know pastors don't make very much money. Right now Chris has taken some time off from full time ministry to get him Masters degree. He is working right now but as you can imagine working a full time job and saving for school doesn't leave very much extra money with a family to support as well. 
All that being said I wanted to share with you some of the ways that I have been able to save money.
I have tried making different dinner menus over the last few years and most of them I have to say I didn't stick to for very long. Then I started using the one I have now and I love it!!


What I am doing now is using a leather book that I keep my menu and shopping list in. On one side I have a printed monthly calendar and on the other side I have a note book where I write our shopping list. I try and write my menu at least two weeks in advance. Most of our meals balanced and healthy, I also like to have a fun kid type dinner every week or two.
Some of the things I have done to save is by using the weekly flyer in our local supermarket. As much as I can I buy store brand, buying locally grow or organic is also a great way to save money (at least where I live I can buy some of our fresh foods organic or locally grown for cheaper). I also plan my menu with some of the food I already have in my house rather then buying all new products that way I only buy what is on my shopping list rather then buying things I might use in the next few weeks.

Since I have been using this menu system I have been saving an average of $100-150 per month, that is on my groceries as well as in gas because we are not running out to the store to buy that item that we forgot or to buy a whole meal at the store. I also know in advance what I am making for dinner and my family is eating healthier and I am not stressed during the day trying to figure out what I should make for dinner. 


Some of the other ways I save money it by going to different coupon sites to get coupons for the places I am already shopping at. Here are just a few of the sites that I have found for Old Navy, Michael's Crafts, Printable Canadian coupons, More Coupons and there are so many more coupons online all you have to do is look for them. 
I am big believer in saving money and still living well as a family. I hope that some of these tips or sites are able to help some of you out as well. 
Have a Fantastic Day!!!

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2 comments:

Little Missus Sunshine said...

Have you used www.save.ca or www.brandsaver.ca also? Those have great coupons from time to time. You can also find some excellent information (and even somtimes some free stuff) from www.frugalshopper.ca Since we are a single-income family also you gotta learn how to use your finances well. It's fun!

Katherine said...

Thanks for the links they are really good and I will be adding them into my list of coupon lists!! :)