After a few months of spending $50 a week on groceries, I really felt like I had a good rhythm. I could plan a menu based on what was on sale, and we'd have nutritious, delicious meals just about every day of the week.
All of this changed when I got sick....morning sickness to be exact, but I think it applies to any time you get sick. I didn't plan, at all. Thinking about food just made me sick, and when I did think of something that sounded good to me, I would usually just send my husband to the closest store to pick it up. The days I did go grocery shopping consisted of me walking down each aisle and pulling easy meals off the shelves, and filling the cart full of lots of good sounding snack foods. No menu, no ads, and no list.
The result of this lack of planning? I spent a little over twice the amount of money on groceries as I usually do! And that wasn't even counting the nights we went out to eat, which also more than doubled! I didn't realize how much the 'quick trips' and impulse buying were costing me, but I honestly didn't care because I didn't feel good....at least until I saw the total for the month. I then resolved to be a little better!
So the past month was much better! I didn't stay in my budget, but I was much closer than I was the previous month. But, I still had a lot of cravings, which rarely matched up with what was on sale. For example, one week I couldn't live without a spiral ham, and it was before they started going on their holiday sale. It was delicious, and normally I could plan it into my budget by using it for a couple of meals, but I had neither the energy or the time!
So this month, I'm really trying to plan AND stay in my budget! We'll see how it goes, but I think it will be much easier since I've been feeling a lot better. And I've resolved to keep 4-5 freezer meals on hand so I can use them in case of a emergency.
Do you have any other suggestions for how to stay in your budget when you're sick or just really, really busy? I'd love to hear them!