Mondays with Mavis: How to Feed Your Family For $100 a Month

This week started with The Girl Who Thinks She’s a Bird and I in Paris, France.  Followed by an afternoon in San Francisco, California and it was topped off by a gloriously sunny weekend here in Western Washington.  I could not have planned a more perfect week if I had tried.

One of my favorite things about going on vacation is we get a temporary break from our one hundred dollars a month challenge.  This silly challenge of mine doesn’t have many rules, but when we take a vacation, we pay for everything {including food} from our “vacation fund.”  Sometimes we luck out and are able to stay in hotels with a club floor that entitles us to a free breakfast buffet and an afternoon meal.  And sometimes we stay in hotels that don’t even come equipped with a coffee pot.  It just depends.  But in the end, the money spent while on vacation comes from the vacation fund.  No matter if it was spent on food, taxi cabs or souvenirs.

Once we arrived home from our trip it was back to business as usual.

Here is what I purchased this week:

Albertsons $2.85

The Round Up savings at Albertsons this week was a little slim pickings if you ask me. Personally, I prefer double coupons, however I was still able to score some freebies this time around. 6 Choban mango yogurts {clearance}, 2 tubs of Darigold Sour Cream {clearance}, Yoplait Lactose free yogurt {$.30 overage per yogurt}, 2 free Ken’s steakhouse dressing, 3 lbs free onions {due to incorrect signage in the store} and 4 lbs of chicken.

Albertsons $ Free

Lawry’s Marinade is delicious!

Costco $19.02

I decided to make ice cream and I needed a few supplies.  I have zero regrets for splurging!

Fred Meyer $7.50

Yawn.  Milk and cheese.  Whoop T Do.

Unidentified Store $ Free

* Stay tuned to find out HOW I got all these fresh fruits and veggies for free! 

So, how did you do this week?  Did you get anything for free?

Total Spent This Week $29.37
Total Spent This Year $431.10
Total Spent This Year on Garden Seeds/Supplies $367.92

Want to learn how to preserve your bounty?  Amazon currently has The Complete Guide to Food Preservation: Step-by-step Instructions on How to Freeze, Dry, Can, and Preserve Food on sale for $16.30.

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  1. Faith says

    My guess is that the fruit/veggies came from Fred Meyer, but I can’t wait to hear how you got them all for free! Awesome!

  2. Michala says

    Oh my goodness.. this is going to sound super stalkerish, but I am so excited I found you! I was so sad when you left fabulessly frugal, but I had a feeling your blogging days weren’t over.

    Looking forward to more Mondays with Mavis :)

  3. Colie says

    LOL! I feel like a stalker too! You are such an inspiration and loved your posts on Mondays! I’m so glad I decided to get online and do some research to see what you were up to. It made my day to find you and to know that I can look forward to Mondays again!

  4. D'Anna says

    At Albie’s I spent $40.45, saved $103.59 = 72% which included some killer Manager Special meat deals along w/ the chicken from the ad, Free marinade, free dressing & free hot sauce and a bunch of real food to go with the free condiments :)

    I did NOT get a catalina on OM or Kraft items and the price did NOT go down to the price in the ad….I know the wording in the ad was sort of wonky but in the grand scheme of things I had a pretty good trip.

  5. says

    Your $100 a month challenge and logging weekly pics of your trips has inspired me Mavis! I recently decided to buy a house in the next year and start saving aggressively for a downpayment. I’ve been couponing (and having a wonderful time) for 2 years and thought I was doing great until I ran the numbers from 2011 – $311/month on food, personal care, pet items, and dining out! For just me, that seemed far too excessive considering how much “saving” I was doing. I have really cut back and am much more conscientious of my purchasing, spending, and budget now. I am trying to stay at $100/mo for grocery/personal care/pets + $50/mo for dining out. So breaking it up weekly and trying to stay around $25/wk makes it easier. I wish I could garden but I live in an apartment with essentially NO sun exposure. Can’t wait to get a house with a yard! I yearn to move back to my house down south that has 1.5 acres…what I would do with it now!

    Last week:
    Albies: 3 hot sauce + 3 marinades = free
    Produce stand: 6 pears + 1 eggplant + 2lbs grapes = $5.62
    Fred Meyer: 2lbs strawberries = $3
    Safeway: 6 bags 8oz shredded cheese + dozen eggs + 2 bags gummi sweetarts (easter clearance) = $9.73
    Rite Aid: 2 Rice Krispies + 1 Cornflakes + 1 Samy styler + 1 Veet wax strips + 2 AlkaSeltzer allergy + 6 Dentyne gum + 1 snickers egg (clearance) = $2.52 moneymaker!
    + a bottle of wine = $3.01
    Weekly total: 18.94!

    • Mavis says

      Congrats on saving for a house! I think breaking it up and trying to stay around $25 a week is easier too. Good luck on your savings plan. I’m rooting for you.

  6. Marilyn says

    Hey Mavis,
    Hope your holidays were wondeful!
    I was wondering if you could give hints on how to earn more points on swagbucks?
    My New Years Resolution is to be like Mavis and spend only One hundred a month for two adults, one large golden retreiver and four chickens!
    I follow your blog everyday! I just am so thankful for all that you do share and i love your humor!

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