I was so excited to see that Stephanie from Keeper of the Home was going to be hosting an Eating from the Pantry & Freezer Challenge! This week I was planning on starting a series about pantry and why it is beneficial to have a small stockpile. After participating in this challenge this month, I think my pantry series will be even more beneficial.
So what is this challenge about? Basically, Stephanie has encouraged her readers to inventory their freezers and pantry. Then set a realistic goal of how much you want to spend, using as much from your pantry and freezer as possible in hopes to use mainly what you have on hand, in turn saving some money!
To start with, take a basic inventory of your freezer and what you have in it. Then do the same in your pantry and shelves. We usually find we have a few things we really didn’t know we had. I always use to find extra things in my freezer until I started keeping an inventory of what I had on hand. Sometimes things fall to the back of the shelf or the bottom of the freezer and can go bad before they are used. This is an effort to not only save money, but also to really rotate what we have on hand to make sure nothing is wasted!
Her goal for their family is to only spend $150 for the month, from May 16th to June 18th. Since her families budget is normally $450, she is hoping to save $300. My budget is normally $400 and I would truly like to save $200, with a budget of $200. I know I can do it! Although I have a few holes in what I have on-hand, I really have almost all of the basics.
There will be an exception for my family that I will not be including, our trip to the Strawberry Farms this week. I have money set aside to purchase extra to preserve and freeze so that will not be added in with the month’s total.
Stephanie is advising to use the cash method. Basically take the amount you are budgeting and set that amount aside in cash. When we use cards, even if just a debit card, we tend to not be quite as careful as we would be if we were handing over, cold hard cash. After all, once the cash is gone, it’s gone! Have you ever used the cash method before? I truly haven’t, but had started at the beginning of this month as a suggestion from Crystal at the Money Saving Mom.
Need some inspiration to get started? Download Stephanie’s ebook, Plan It, Don’t Panic, which includes printable pages for taking inventories (as well as pages for your actual meal planning process, plus lots of other helpful meal planning information throughout the book). During this month-long challenge, all of Stephanie’s ebooks are on sale. Use the coupon code CHALLENGE25 to take 25% off any single ebook, OR use code BUNDLE50 to buy all 3 ebooks at 50% off!
Looking for some free printable planning options? Crystal at Money Saving Mom has a large selection of free printables for kitchen planning purposes. Mandi from Life…Your Way also has a huge selection of printables (over 200) and I have no doubt that she would have something useful in there for this challenge.
So what do you think, are you up for the challenge to save some money and try to use mainly what you have on-hand? I would love to know what you think!