by LDS Intelligent Living
How to Save Lots of Money and Build a 3 Month Food Supply much faster
If you are well organized and know what you are doing, you can build your food storage much faster. When you shop smart, you save lots of money!
You most likely have heard these money saving tips before:
- Don’t go to the grocery store on an empty stomach: Eat before you go shopping so you don’t succumb to impulse buying, and get extra food not on your shopping list because you are hungry.
- Leave your husband and children at home : Go by yourself if you can; you will have more success sticking to your shopping list.
Those are great tips to follow, but there are many more helpful ones. You should be paying close attention to these money saving ideas because, remember, when you plan your grocery shopping wisely, you can save a lot of money and build your food supply faster!
Here are my suggestions about saving money on groceries; I share them with you because they truly work!
If You Want to Save Money, Lose the Traditional Menu Planning Idea
I read a book, years ago, that changed my grocery shopping habits. It explained that the traditional planning of menus is counter productive in the attempt to save money on groceries. When you start planning meals, and collect the recipes for the meals planned, and then, head to the store with your list, you will be most likely paying full price on most of the food on your shopping list.
Barbara Salsbury said: “Plan to eat the bargains you find, rather than trying to find bargains on what you plan to eat!” In other words, you should plan your meals after reading the ads in the newspapers, after comparing them to find the best deals, AND after checking your well stocked pantry for what’s already on the shelves. Using the food in your storage is an important factor in this method; if you can buy food in bulk when it hits rock bottom price, you will never have to pay full price again; you can stock-up your pantry and wait for the next sale cycle.
A grocery price book will help you keep track of the sales cycles for the items you regularly buy in each store so you’ll know if the sales are truly “great deals”. The best way to find those price cycles is to record the prices and dates for each of the products you regularly purchase. So, next time you go shopping, don’t throw away your receipts and start recording. Don’t be overwhelmed, take baby steps, start with a few items at a time and build up your price list slowly.
When you add coupons to those bargains, you will have much better results saving money on groceries; the extra savings will help you acquire your three month food supply faster.
When you learn to combine a price book with coupons and other shopping techniques, you will be able to save hundreds of dollars. Remember: It will take planning, organizing, and time at first, but it will be well worth the effort when you see the results.
Why do all this? For peace of mind, to save money, and for convenience–you never run out of food in your house because your pantry is well stocked. Think how much better you will feel knowing that if you experienced economic hardship, had to “shelter in place”*, or were caught in a natural disaster situation, your family would have what is needed to survive.
Also, don’t forget the other necessities like toilet paper, deodorant etc. and the other needful things in your life that should be included on the list.
*A grocery price book is the ultimate money saving tool: you can use a notebook, or go digital. Melanie Pinola on lifehacker said that “Both paper and digital price books have advantages. A paper notebook is quicker to jot down prices and refer to when you shop, but grocery apps make quick work of calculating prices (plus, they serve as grocery lists).” You can also use a spreadsheet to create a price book to record the prices of all the items you regularly purchase at different grocery stores; the grocery price book enables you to detect price cycles in different supermarkets; find the real bargains, and plan your shopping trips for maximum savings.
Here are several articles that will help you build a price book
Making a Price List: The Digital Version
Grocery Pricebook Apps
How to Save the Most Money on Your Grocery Budget with a Price Book
How to create Your Own Grocery Pricebook
…and some great ideas on these sites that will help you save hundreds of dollars on groceries
29 Ways to Save Hundreds of Dollars on Groceries
We Need to Prepare Ourselves and Our Families Financially
By Gayle D., POES Relief Society President
Brothers and Sisters,
This past week our high council message was to prepare ourselves and our families financially. Our goal for the month of September follows this same theme. With so much uncertainty in the world today, money management is essential . Management of our resources doesn’t just affect us temporally. Discord in our homes almost always traces back to quarrels and accusations over money. This isn’t necessarily because of a lack of money, many humble homes are filled with happy families. Discord comes because of mismanagement of money, regardless of the income.
Each family should have access to the brochure, “One for the Money.” By Elder Marvin J. Ashton. May I suggest that each individual, each married couple, sit down and read this carefully. Then be prepared to share with the entire family. It is only when the family has a shared goal that wise management can be successful.
If we start by paying an honest tithe, we set a foundation for financial independence. Following Elder Ashton’s 12 steps to financial freedom will aid us and our families in achieving the happiness that our Father in Heaven desires for us.
May we each find our way to follow the admonition of our prophets and live the Lord’s commandments. The Lord will open the windows of heaven to us in these matters if we but choose to obey.
To read “One For The Money” by Marvin J. Ashton, click here…
Teach Children Money Management Skills
An article on the Forever Families website entitled “Teach Children Money Management Skills” written by Susan Sheldon, graduate research assistant, and edited by Stephen F. Duncan, Professor, School of Family Life, Brigham Young University, offers several tips on how to raise financially responsible children. Susan reports that “A 1997 study sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor found that 40% of children receive regular allowances or handouts from their parents or guardians averaging $50 per week.” Regardless of the amount of money your children obtain weekly, monthly, or annually, it’s important to teach them how to save and spend it responsibly. Teaching Children Money Management Skills by Forever Families
Photo by LDS Intelligent Living
Salvage Grocery Stores
By Donna White
A trip to the salvage grocery store is like a treasure hunt. There you will find great bargains and unexpected treasures. These stores are not as busy as regular stores, so if you have any questions you can talk to the owner or staff who are always very friendly and helpful.
What is a salvage grocery store, or scratch and dent or discount grocery store, as they are sometimes called? A salvage grocery store is basically a damaged goods store. Cans and packages (and sometimes the whole case) may have been slightly damaged during delivery. There are many other reasons why products end up in these stores: a label change or improper labeling; closeouts, discontinued items, overstocks, excess inventory, off-brands, seasonal items; closing of a warehouse, goods getting close to their use by date, etc.
For whatever reasons the regular supermarkets could not (or choose not to) sell the particular item. Items are then sent to a supermarket reclamation center where broken jars are discarded, cans with leaks are destroyed, etc. The rest of the products are then shipped to a distributor, who ships the products to a salvage grocery store.
Some things to be aware of:
* Salvage grocery stores are regulated and inspected by the USDA.
* A spokesman for the National Food Processors Association stated that dented and rusty cans are safe as long as they don’t leak or bulge.
* All the groceries are check for quality by the liquidation center and by the staff at the salvage store.
* The Best if used by date is the date recommended for best taste or flavor. This is how long the manufacturer wants their goods on display, but usually foods will be good for many months beyond these dates. Canned foods usually last a long time past these dates as do many boxed foods.
* The only foods required to have expiration dates are baby food and infant formulas.
How do you find salvage grocery stores? Read more…
Live Within Your Means
For many years our church leaders have encouraged us to learn to manage our finances by creating a budget and learning to live within that budget.
In the pamphlet entitled “All IS SAFELY GATHERED IN”, our leaders have counseled us to follow these five basics: (1) Pay Tithes and Offerings. (2) Avoid Debt. (3) Use a budget. (4) Build a Reserve. (5) Teach Family Members the principles of frugality, hard work, and saving.
In a welfare session of General Conference, Elder Marvin J. Ashton of the Council of the Twelve Apostles counseled:
- Pay an honest Tithe
- Learn to Manage Money before it manages you
- Learn self-discipline and self-restraint in money matters
- USE A BUDGET
- Teach family members the importance of working and earning
- Teach children to make money making decisions within their ability to comprehend
- Teach family members to contribute to the total family welfare
- Make education a continuing process
- Work toward home ownership
- Appropriately involve yourself in an insurance program
- Understand external influences (inflation) on finances and investments
- Involve yourself in food storage and emergency preparedness programs
Although given many years ago, these 12 points of counsel are valid today. Our adherence to these principles – given above – will bring harmony and cohesiveness to our family in spiritual matters as well as our material lives. We are encouraged to work together as husband and wife to accomplish these principles. In my experience as bishop I can tell you that family finances are a large problem in marital happiness. We can find happiness in sharing and working together to live these principles and teach them to our children by example as well as by precept.
All Debt Bad?
I know that the members of the Church are counseled to be financially prepared to face “hard times,” the same way we are told to have a year’s supply of basic foods on hand. Does this counsel mean that all debt is categorically bad?
This question was discussed in the April 1975 Ensign “I have a Question” section.
A Practical Experience in Budgeting
There is a wonderful Family Home Evening lesson in the “Money Management” section of the Family Home Evening Resource Book entitled “A Practical Experience in Budgeting”. This lesson allows the children in the family the opportunity to experience and visualize how the family spends it’s money; and why there isn’t always a lot of extra money left over at the end of the month to spend on wants like toys, candy, and electronics.
“This unique way to help family members understand their part in helping with the family budget was suggested by Dr. Dwayne Belt of the Brigham Young University faculty. You may wish to use some of his ideas or adapt them to the needs of your family:
“I had told the children to sit in a circle on the floor to prepare for a special activity during our family home evening. To their astonishment, I gave each one a large bundle of one-dollar bills. My wife and I also had a bundle.
“ ‘All of this money together is the amount earned each month in our family,’ I said. ‘Tonight you are all going to help Mom and Dad spend it.’ Read more
Photo by LDS Intelligent Living
One of the best spot and stain removers is a little gold bar of soap called Fels-Naptha Heavy Duty Laundry Bar Soap. I have used it for years to get most stains out of our family’s clothing. Simply wet the stain and rub the bar across it working it into the stain. If the stain isn’t gone, then wash the garment with the rest of the laundry. At $1.25 a bar that lasts for a loooooong time, it’s a real bargain.
Photo by LDS Intelligent Living
Identity Theft: Man’s Plan vs. The Lord’s Plan
By Tom H.
It is the Lord’s desire that man not suffer needlessly. To this end, He has laid out various plans by which man may find joy in this world and exaltation in the next.
Today, one of the most depressing dividers of family, one of the greatest dissipaters of joy, is Satan’s grand plan by which we fail to know our true identities as children of God. In this plan, Satan has created the attractiveness of money and thereby the ultimate threat to our temporal and spiritual identities.
For decades now, prophet after prophet has laid a tremendous emphasis upon our not being indebted to this world. To paraphrase: we should be in this world but not of this world. To counteract this counsel, Satan has accelerated his plan to help us lose our identities not only through spiritual nonchalance and apathy, but now realistically through the physical loss of our temporal identities through “identity theft.” Identity theft is when someone else knows enough about us to successfully impersonate us, often in the world of finance and often to our detriment.
The question in today’s society is “What can we do to forestall the theft of our physical identities.
To read more about identity theft, click here to access the United States Department of Justice Website..
and to access the Federal Trade Commission
By Laraine L. Thompson
In a Woman’s Day, October 2009 article, entitled “Kids, I Shrunk the Honey” Paula Spencer details the consequences of paring our family budgets, from eliminating fast food, designer clothing, cell phone access, cable television, to unnecessary extra-curricular activities. Certainly there is guilt associated with a parent’s desires to cut back. We may be duped into feeling that we are somehow inadequate, that we just don’t love our children enough, that we are not nurturing enough, that we are unwilling to supply them with important “needs”. On the contrary, our children may learn some critical truths in our actions to cut back in our expenses:
- Maybe, just maybe, they will take better care of their “stuff”.
- Unfed, the bottomless hunger for immediate gratification might go away.
- Although reading food labels is healthy, paying attention to other labels is not.
- Their old “stuff” may get new life or take on new importance.
- They may finally grasp basic economics: Money grows neither on trees nor in the ATM.
- They will still get into college—scholarship, employment, savings.
- Deprivation may ignite that invaluable motivating force called desire/ambition.
And perhaps, the most important, but unstated truth that our children will learn is that they are eventually and ultimately responsible for their own care and keeping, that they alone are responsible for the choices made in their lives, from making money for desired privileges/things, to making money for their own college education. Now, there’s a novel, radical idea!
Photos by LDS Intelligent Living