We are definitely in our busy season again. At the same time, I have two different goals this month. First, keep grocery spending to a minimum, or less than $125. Second, eliminate going out the eat for the entire month. So today, I am going to share how we make this work.
I always carry with me a snack bag in my van, it is packed with a variety of different snacks such as gummies, granola or fruit bars, rice krispy treats and usually applesauce. For football games that we attend on Saturdays, I have each of the kids grab a bag of chips or popcorn on the way out the door. Typically, each of these items are $1 a piece at the ball games. So just by remembering to grab the snack bag out of the car we save $5 a game with 3 or more games a week that is at least $15 a week saved.
More important than snacks are drinks. The person that is typically involved in the sport is allowed to bring in a water container. As a busy mom, I can not tell you the number of time per game, I hear or see parents running to the concession stand because they forgot to grab their child a drink. Gatorade is typically $2 a bottle of which I can buy a pack of 6 for less than $4. I also try and pack a cooler for each game with at least one water per person or can soda for Matt and I. We can either leave in the car until we want or I simply can the cooler in with me. I have never seen a sign that says no outside food or drink at a school event. At competition events, we usually put items inside my purse or simply go to the van to eat.
Finally planning ahead, I will be honest and say that we usually REALLY enjoy ball game food. I have never seen a batch of nachos or chill cheese fries that did not look delicious. However, if we as a family eat even once a week at a ballgame we are looking at $20 bare minimum. That is $80 a month that we can enjoy else where. We always plan a meal prior to the start time of a game, yes this means that some days we eat at 4:30 or even 4pm. We usually plan something that is portable such as chicken filet sandwiches, hamburgers,sloppy joes, chicken nuggets or tacos. So that at worse one or more can eat at the game. Days that we find ourselves eating at 4:30, we usually will share a “big snack” such as nachos or fries at the game. We are really not hungry and can share one $3 nachos instead of needing 5 to eat.