The basics on how I feed my family of 4 on $25 a week!
Yeah right you say!?! Not possible!
It is possible. I also pack lunches for all 4 of us 5 days a week. It's not something that is going to happen overnight though. We have been using this budget for a little over a year now. Here is how I do it-
My husband is an avid hunter/fisher which means I have a freezer full of meat. This is where I save most of my money. I do occasionally buy chicken, pork, and beef, BUT only if it is on sale! You can substitute venison for most things beef. The Internet is a wonderful thing for finding recipes for duck, pheasant, turkey, fish and goose.
I grow a massive garden in the summer. I either can or freeze everything. My children love vegetables! I do buy vegetables and fruit weekly just to keep fresh stuff in the house, but they have to be on sale.
For other food items, I have built up my stockpile well enough that I only really stock up with what's on sale for the week and match with coupons. Milk, bread and butter I buy at the local convenience store. It's the cheapest place to get it. I also cook from scratch most of the time. We don't eat a lot of processed foods. I buy a lot of my spices and baking supplies in bulk from the local Amish store. I don't have a price book, but I don't have a whole lot of choices so it's pretty easy to remember!
I refuse to pay for toiletries, this is where couponing really works for me. I like to coupon but we don't have any stores that have a great doubling policy. I live in the middle of nowhere. I shop mostly at Walmart or Dollar General. Copps once in awhile runs a doubling promo that makes it worth my while to drive 30 minutes. This was one of my trips to DG which cost me only $0.80!
I don't turn away free. If someone has extra in their garden, I will take it. My grandma has an orchard, I go pick apples to can and freeze. A guy my husband works with has chickens that lay more then they can eat, we get a dozen a week from them. My family gets animals butchered and they don't like certain cuts, we take them. There is always a recipe to try! Free is good!
This is what works for us! It is possible, just takes time and discipline! I do have a friend who's husband does not hunt and still is able to do a $100 a month budget also!
By having this budget this past year we were able to save enough to go on a family vacation to Disney.