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Old 02-02-2009, 09:11 PM   #21
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Is that for one person? If so, doesn't seem difficult to me at all - right about in line with our monthly food budget for three people.

I used to regularly see people in line at the grocery store buying groceries along with a lot of junk food like ice cream, and using food stamps.

People will blog about anything to try to get attention.
Surely you spend more than $200/month for a family of three??

Wow, maybe I need to reevaluate my budget. Just stopped by the store today and picked up groceries for two weeks (only for me).

Cost $150... @ 3 meals/day * 7 days/week * 2 Weeks => $3.57/meal

I Thought I was eating pretty cheap...
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Old 02-02-2009, 09:28 PM   #22
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speaking of eating cheap

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Old 02-02-2009, 09:48 PM   #23
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speaking of eating cheap

You see free meal.... I see deferred health expenses.....LOL!

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Old 02-02-2009, 09:55 PM   #24
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You see free meal.... I see deferred health expenses.....LOL!
I will never give up pancakes
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Old 02-02-2009, 10:07 PM   #25
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I just check my credit card. For the past 12 months, I spent $2132 in supermarket purchases and $933 dining out. The $933 included all of my cafeteria purchases minus maybe $80 during one month when I used my ATM card. If I had to, I could probably bring a sandwich and other supermarket foods for $300 for the entire year, so my entire year's food budget was not much above $175 a month.
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Old 02-02-2009, 10:46 PM   #26
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$176/mo/person? Piece of cake.
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Old 02-03-2009, 06:01 AM   #27
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This couple did $1 per day per person for a month and wrote a rather entertaining and thought-provoking blog about the experience.
One Dollar Diet Project

As for me -- I swore to myself when I was a just a young lad that when I grew up I would buy anything I wanted at the grocery (my family often ate poorly due to lack of funds). The fact that I now can is sufficient in and of itself to make me feel rich. I would cut back on almost everything else before I would cut back on food.
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Old 02-03-2009, 06:42 AM   #28
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I spend about $180/mo at the grocery store and another 20ish eating out. I could go a little lower but at 6'6" and 155lbs I need all the food I can get.
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Old 02-03-2009, 06:44 AM   #29
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I would cut back on almost everything else before I would cut back on food.
Me, too. It's not that I don't know how to be frugal when grocery shopping, but I just refuse to cut back on grocery expenses.

I had quite a different attitude towards food expenses when I was in my 20's and had to live on nearly nothing, but my situation was completely different at that time.
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Old 02-03-2009, 08:01 AM   #30
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From this link Eligibility -- $176 is the maximum monthly benefit for 1 person. That will be reduced by 30% of "net monthly income", since they figure a family should spend (up to) 30% of its income on food -- a figure I think is derived from a survey in the mid-1960s.

No judgments or ranting in this post -- just a couple facts.
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Old 02-03-2009, 08:26 AM   #31
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I swore to myself when I was a just a young lad that when I grew up I would buy anything I wanted at the grocery (my family often ate poorly due to lack of funds). The fact that I now can is sufficient in and of itself to make me feel rich. I would cut back on almost everything else before I would cut back on food.
I feel this way about my heating bill. I swore to myself when I was in college that I would never be cold in my own house again once I started working.
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Old 02-03-2009, 08:38 AM   #32
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I feel this way about my heating bill. I swore to myself when I was in college that I would never be cold in my own house again once I started working.
That's what I thought too until last month. This is the first winter for me owning my own home. My electic/heat bill went from $42-48 for may-oct to $101 for nov to $248 for dec. So for Jan I heated my bedroom to 70 but only heated the rest of the rooms to 50. I stayed almost exclusively in my bedroom all month. I'll get my bill in the next couple days. Hopefully it went down even though the temps went down too. I HATE being cold but I hate being broke even more so i'll do what's needed to keep all future bills under $200.
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Old 02-03-2009, 09:03 AM   #33
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That's what I thought too until last month. This is the first winter for me owning my own home. My electic/heat bill went from $42-48 for may-oct to $101 for nov to $248 for dec. So for Jan I heated my bedroom to 70 but only heated the rest of the rooms to 50. I stayed almost exclusively in my bedroom all month. I'll get my bill in the next couple days. Hopefully it went down even though the temps went down too. I HATE being cold but I hate being broke even more so i'll do what's needed to keep all future bills under $200.
I'm "tracking every penny" ala Your Money or Your Life and my gas/electric bills averaged $144 per month in 2008. It may help you live in your whole house if you look at your utility bills that way. This last bill was $235, but back in June it was only $69. So your average is probably about the same or maybe slightly lower than mine.

That $235 also represents a colder than normal winter here in central NY and good-but-could-be-better insulation. Although I'm saving like crazy to ER at some point, I'm giving serious thought to upgrading the insulation and replacing 6 windows this summer. I figure it's a guaranteed return on investment and the lower utility bills will of course last forever - even as the price of fossil fuels continues to rise.

BTW, I have a programmable thermostat and I keep it at 69 when I'm home, 62 at night and when I'm not home.
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:23 AM   #34
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I'm with the "I would cut back on almost everything else before I would cut back on food" gang. If I'm working a couple extra years or driving a crappier car to go pick up fresh seafood totally worth it.
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:31 AM   #35
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Surely you spend more than $200/month for a family of three??

Wow, maybe I need to reevaluate my budget. Just stopped by the store today and picked up groceries for two weeks (only for me).

Cost $150... @ 3 meals/day * 7 days/week * 2 Weeks => $3.57/meal

I Thought I was eating pretty cheap...
Yes - my assumption is that the $176 in food stamps is based on one person. Our monthly food budget is probably around $500.
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Old 02-03-2009, 11:30 AM   #36
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The two of us spent over $4000 last year on food - which included cat food & litter & sundries - probably spent more than that since i know some cash transactions didn't get entered - so maybe $400/month. Nearly all our food is from Costco (their chickens play a leading role in our diets), lots of processed heat & eat stuff. Far cry from earlier times when i budgeted a meager amount. My gal doesn't tire of telling about seeing a budget i had done that went out three months and included $5 for fun each month. This when we first started seeing each other - figure that demonstrates that a woman sees a man and thinks he'll change, while a man sees a woman and thinks she'll never change - and they're both wrong.
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Old 02-03-2009, 11:35 AM   #37
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The two of us spent over $4000 last year on food - which included cat food & litter & sundries - probably spent more than that since i know some cash transactions didn't get entered - so maybe $400/month. Nearly all our food is from Costco (their chickens play a leading role in our diets), lots of processed heat & eat stuff. Far cry from earlier times when i budgeted a meager amount. My gal doesn't tire of telling about seeing a budget i had done that went out three months and included $5 for fun each month. This when we first started seeing each other - figure that demonstrates that a woman sees a man and thinks he'll change, while a man sees a woman and thinks she'll never change - and they're both wrong.
I hope you didn't further annotate your spreadsheet with


Fun [1] $5
Food $100
Rent $500

Total $605

[1] Off-brand condoms.
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Old 02-03-2009, 11:50 AM   #38
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I hope you didn't further annotate your spreadsheet with


Fun [1] $5
Food $100
Rent $500

Total $605

[1] Off-brand condoms.
30 years ago - birth control pills, free love, no aids man - groovy. Rent? Bah - didn't have furniture but was buying a house.
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Old 02-03-2009, 11:53 AM   #39
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Please share with me how it's possible to do this for a family of three. I spend no less than than $950 monthly for a family of 4. We are two adults and 2 girls, 9 and 7. We are all quite thin and don't eat a lot. Our diet consist of primarily of fish, some chicken, vegtables, fruits, and rice. The vegetables, fruits, milk and eggs are mostly organic. My husband, I and my older daughter are lactose intollerant so we tend to buy lactose free products as well as soy based products. For the life of me I can't figure out why our food cost so much. We generally do not eat out and eat at least two meals at home a day. Is this normal for others? It boggles my mind how you can feed a family of three for so little. Please shed some light.
According to my nutrition class, lactose intollerance doesn't mean you cant eat any regular dairy products. You just have to consume less amounts of it more frequently throughout the day. And the milk products that can't be broken down in your intestine will be removed by simply increasing your fiber intake.
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Old 02-03-2009, 12:19 PM   #40
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Hi,

Just to clarify, I posted the blog article and the link because the blogger was making it sound like you would have to go hungry with the food budget of $176/mo. It is for sure I would have to make some sacrifices (no eating out, no gourmet or organic food), but it would be a do-able amount for me by being creative (although I'd rather not have to do it), and I wanted to see what others thought.

The author decided to do this because of the foodstamp story connected to it, but I was not talking about that part. I was talking about the blogger who acted as if you would have to starve to be on a $176/mo budget.

tmm
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