Well, we knew it would happen eventually, but we didn’t think it would be this soon…we’ve had to revamp our food budget and that trickles into revamping our jar money.
We have decided that we have to up our weekly food budget (which includes diapers and toiletries) to $300 a week. This will put our jar money up to $405 per week. We didn’t want to have to do this; we’ve been working hard to keep food costs down, but we just can’t keep it under $250 per week. There are a few factors that might be causing this. First, our kids are getting bigger. The boys seem to be hungry ALL the time and they are eating more. Two helpings at dinner and loads of snacks. Fruits and veggies can get expensive for snacking, but we gotta keep them in healthy foods or else they’ll get fat. The second factor is that we think food prices have gone up since the new year. We thought it was just Christmas, because in January we seemed to be back on track, but through February and March, we’ve been spending more. We haven’t been able to get away from the grocery store, including trips for milk during the week, without spending between $260 and $275. It’s frustrating because we are scouring sales, trying frugal recipes, and shopping like we always have.
So why are we increasing the food budget to $300 instead of $275? We figure we’ll continue to do our best to keep things less expensive, but we want to have the leeway to be able to spend a bit more and not feel so restricted. The kids are only going to get bigger and eat more and more. There will be some money left over and that will go into our vacation fund for this year (we rent a cottage every year for a week in the summer). Thankfully, with paying off the 3 credit cards, we have that bit of breathing room and things aren’t so tight. If we find that we’re doing well again, we’ll drop the extra $50…but I can’t see that happening. Darn kids *wink*