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The Eating from the Pantry and Freezer Challenge Begins
Posted By Stephanie Langford On May 16, 2012 @ 3:00 am In Frugality,In the kitchen,Menu Planning | Comments Disabled
It’s time to begin the Eating From the Pantry and Freezer Challenge . I’m excited to get going and I hope you are, too!
I promised to share my own plan and goals with you, so here’s what I’m planning to do:
My financial goal is to save $300 (our regular monthly budget is $450). I plan to do this by saving $150 out of my May budget, and $150 out of June.
It’s important to decide how much you will allow yourself to spend. Don’t just say, “I’ll spend as little as possible”. That’s a recipe for spending too much.
Instead, determine how little you think you can get by on, make a plan for how you might use that money ($20 milk, $10 eggs, etc.), then pull the cash out of the bank and keep it in your wallet. This makes it FAR more likely that you will actually stick to your savings goals .
Additionally, it’s best to also take out (in cash) the amount that you intend to save. If you’ve already got it set aside, and you can see the tangible savings, you’ll be less tempted to spend it.
I’ve already completed my freezer and pantry inventories. Here are some of the foods that I’ll be working with:
During this month-long challenge, all of my ebooks  are on sale. Use the coupon code CHALLENGE25 to take 25% off any single ebook, OR use code BUNDLE50 to buy all 3 of my ebooks at 50% off!
Q. Can we link to this on our blogs?
A. Yes, absolutely. Please feel free to use the graphic for the challenge as well.
Q. Can we purchase fresh foods during the challenge?
A. By all means. I will allowing myself $75 for every two weeks ($150 total). This money will be for dairy (raw milk, cheese, butter, etc.), eggs, and fresh produce.
Challenges like this are amazing for using up what we already have, but I’m not willing to stop serving my family these fresh, wholesome foods for a month. I use the foods in my freezer and pantry as the basis for my meals, and then the fresh foods will help to fill in the gaps and make sure that we’re eating well throughout the entire month.
Q. I’m totally in but can we go to the store and just not spend as much? I don’t have tons in my freezer and pantry to last a whole month of no food shopping? Can I cut my food bill in half or more, and still do the challenge?
A. Sure! This challenge is flexible, to suit your own needs. If you just want to focus on cutting down your costs, or saving a small percentage of your budget (maybe 20-50% instead of something more intense like 75-100%), by all means, go for it and consider yourself part of the challenge.
Q. I feel like I stock up when things go on a good sale, and what if I deplete my stock, and then nothing’s on sale?
A. I do think about that myself sometimes, but I also know that I tend to get to a place where we have so much that I just don’t feel justified in spending any more money. If you’re amazingly organized, keep up with your stockpile, always eat through the foods that you buy, rotate through what’s in your pantry/freezer, etc. then I suppose you might deplete your stock and then have to spend more on non-sale items.
For most of us, I think that things tend to get a little bit buried, or we buy so much that some of it gets towards the end of its shelf/freezer life, and that’s primarily why I do this. I still get the benefit of being a careful shopper, but I also make sure that I don’t overbuy or stockpile to a degree that things are going to waste.
Also, I feel like I just have to trust that things will be on sale again, and that our money will stretch as it needs to, and that God will provide for our needs in the right time and the right way. He always does. :)
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URLs in this post:
 Image: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/pantryandfreezer-1.png
 the Eating From the Pantry and Freezer Challenge: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2012/05/lets-save-some-money-the-eat-from-the-freezer-and-pantry-challenge.html
 you will actually stick to your savings goals: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2011/10/3-tips-that-will-truly-help-you-to-manage-your-grocery-budget-better.html
 my freezer: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2010/05/cook-more-real-food-take-inventory-of-your-freezer.html
 my pantry: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2010/05/cook-more-real-food-take-inventory-of-your-pantry.html
 Plan It, Don’t Panic: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/my-books/plan-it-dont-panic-a-complete-meal-planning-resource
 ListPlanIt: http://www.1shoppingcart.com/app/?af=1389051
 Plan to Eat: http://www.plantoeat.com/ref/x6yggldyna
 large selection of free printables: http://moneysavingmom.com/downloads/all-free-downloads
 huge selection of printables (over 200): https://www.e-junkie.com/ecom/gb.php?ii=882271&c=ib&aff=57593&cl=69376
 all of my ebooks: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/my-books
 Image: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/pantry-inventory.jpg
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