Saturday, June 12, 2010

Here's something I don't get

And maybe it's because of where I live (New England).

I subscribe/lurk/whatever on a lot of blogs that talk about frugality and simple living. Good blogs, nice people, great tips.

What puzzles me is how some people manage to eat well (organic, Trader Joe's/Whole Foods, farmer's markets, etc) AND eat meat! for as cheaply as they do. Some of my blogger "friends" are vegetarian, some limit the types of meat they eat (ie, no red), so I see the savings there, but then there are others who eat a significant amount. I'm guessing they don't live around here...

Why is it that food prices vary so much? It's really annoying. Yes, we eat meat. Pretty much every day--always at dinner. But even vegetables. Fresh produce can be ridiculous. We shop around, and pick the market with the best sales each week, so that helps a bit. I'm thankful that we have 3 different stores from which to select our food--I know in some places, it's one store or you have to schlep to another one miles and miles away. And there are food deserts, too.

I'm stumped as for what I can do. TJ's and WF's are a ways away, so I couldn't run there all of the time, and honestly, that part of the equation isn't 100% important to me. What's most important is healthy, fresh food and not to pay through the nose for it. Meats, produce, grains, fish, etc.

There are only two of us in this house. It is CRAZY how much money we spend on food, for ONLY two people, each week/every two weeks. God help us when/if we have a child and that child becomes a teenager!


  1. Well, if they're frugal and they eat relatively healthy (including organic) perhaps they did a cow share or something similar? We looked into doing one but don't have a chest freezer yet. We can buy 1/4 of a cow and get all the meat parts for cooking... which comes out A LOT cheaper than buying meat in the store! The only thing is you also get "gross" parts like the tongue and tail... I'll have to learn to do with that. ;)

    I know we save a lot by buying our meat in bulk at Costco. We go once a month and get packs of 12 chicken breasts, a whole pork tenderloin, beef, etc. at pretty good rates (better than the grocery store).

  2. That could be--I didn't think of that. We can get a cow share around here, too! Actually they are right down the street from our house :) I didn't know you get the gross stuff along w/ the good stuff though! Something to ask about if we look into it.

    We have a chest freezer! One of the best things we've bought since moving in here. Our fridge is rather tiny for such a big house--my parents' house is 1/2 the size of ours and their fridge is enormous--so having a freezer has been helpful for the extras that you can freeze. We throw in bread, baked goods, veggies, and of course, the meat. We do buy in meat in bulk at Costco, too...mostly that's all we buy there...

    But I can't figure out why so much money, especially when there's just two of us. Our average monthly total for groceries is $500. We're not buying lobster or filet mignon either! And hardly anything organic--except my Greek yogurt.

  3. One other thing. Since Turtle hunts deer, we do eat a lot of that. It's free (well, he did have a one time purchase of, um, "supplies") but we also have friends who will give us meat if they don't want it/can't use it. We grilled deer steaks last night--they pretty much taste just like grass-raised beef. The ground meat is so lean that you can add some ground pork to it for meatballs (I've fooled some Italians with them! :) ) We make fajitas with the meat, I've cooked some of it Chinese-style. That DOES help us a bit.

  4. I think I'd eat more veggies and fruit if I could buy it and KNOW I would eat it and not have it go bad. . . I'm just so busy and not home much. I guess this is part of the reason I'm a just in time shopper. :) It's too expensive to waste! I do buy tons and tons of pricey tomatoes though. . . because I LOVE them and eat so many. They never go to waste.

    Also, Whole Foods and I have a love/hate relationship. I LOVE it there. . . and automatically think that things look and taste better there. DANG THEM for making their expensive/healthy food so delicious and appealing!!! I don't have any stores like this near me now, but it was a dangerous thing in my last town. :\

  5. I second the "cow share" idea. My husband and I have never done that (we need a chest freezer first!) but I love the idea. We eat meat about 3-4 nights a week, but the good meat is still very pricey. We buy from a local farmer, and we love him and his goods, but it's still always a little painful to fork over so much money for a pound or two of meat.


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