A bad habit I have when going to the lake is willy nilly buying groceries that I know either is too much and need to get hauled back home, or scarfed down indiscriminately by relatives who go by the motto that if it's there, they will eat it. Suffice to say, May was an expensive grocery month. But, I'm looking for ways I can economize and maybe without being a crank, reduce the cost mooching, for future family weekends.
There's a few ways I practiced thrift though, some in money but also time and resources. I'm also trying to figure out more economical meals to share at the lake, without the big eaters that are not contributing, to fill up without costing me a weeks grocery budget.
- For an inexpensive side, I bought a few boxes of boxed au gratin potatoes. I'm not sure if it helped that much, but I redirected my nephew who was on route to a 3rd burger before all eating had one, to have a portion of potatoes. They cooked up nicely in the crockpot. I do love my nephew, but he's a big man and at 25 and working full time, he can contribute somewhat on occasion to the food. (His parents weren't there for lunch, but I think she's also getting of the mind he needs to step up a bit and not expect others to provide for him.)
- Used all the odds and ends fruit and vegetables we brought back home. We brought home opened snacks too for home consumption
- This might sound cheap, but I brought home the chicken we never used rather than keeping in a cabin freezer. Twice we've gone to prepare meat we left to learn someone had used it a weekend we weren't there. While of course I contribute fully (see above) to shared meals, we don't need to feed people when we're not even there.
- My daughter and I wanted a cool treat on the way home, but passed by the so cute, but expensive ice cream shop, and bought a box of Johnny pops as a treat. While they are pricey, the box of 6 was the same as a single cone
- I brought home all the dish towels, plus the bathroom or beach towels used by my family ( and same nephew) to wash and return. They could have been done at the cabin, but easy enough to do at home while doing other laundry.
- I wanted to maximize my day off before being stressed back at work. My daughter and I went for brunch, which was less costly than lunch out. I love a good brunch for my main meal of the day.
- DH took the girls to a $5 movie night, with free popcorn, to the new Top Gun movie. DH brought his popcorn back for me. I hated the first TG, and would not put myself through another chapter of nausea induced by Tom Cruise.
- Made risotto with last of a bag of long grain rice and opened wine. It would have been better with aborio rice, but this worked in a pinch. I served with green beans sauteed in garlic butter. This helped me avoid another grocery shop- trying to start June right after the high cost May.
- Loaded Fetch receipts and tried to remember MS Rewards quizzes.