Ok, first of all, someone needs to tell my grocery shopping brain that the whole point of a pantry challenge is to use stuff up, not replace it as quickly as you pull it off the shelf! Part of it is my hubby's fault, I think - he made me this awesome pantry inventory system, complete with a bar code scanner, so as soon as I use the last of something, it automatically adds it to my shopping list. And, well, if it's on my shopping list, I *must* buy it. Time to start leaving the list at home from time to time!
It's some weird psychological thing - you'd think I went hungry as a child or something (which I never did, except for the one night I got in trouble and Dad sent me to bed without dinner), because I have this almost compulsive need to fill the pantry and have four or five of everything on the shelves. Never mind that the grocery store is only a mile away!
I forgot that, right before I announced this pseudo-challenge, I gave my mom a Costco order (I'm not allowed to have a card because I'll spend too much (obviously), so she does my shopping for me), so we're well stocked up with tuna fish, Minute Rice, and ketchup, too!
At any rate, for the most part, I've been making stuff that doesn't require new purchases or special ingredients. This week, I didn't buy any meat at all except lunch meat, and last week, the only meat I bought was a package of chicken breasts that were on sale for $1.49 a pound.
And yet I've still managed to completely blow my budget for the month out of the water. I think I need to adjust my budget - now that Caitlyn is eating, I'm buying mostly organic produce (she eats mostly fruit), and I try to buy organic other stuff when there isn't too great a difference in price (so no dairy, yet, except yogurt, which is the exact same price as the regular stuff for some reason). That adds up fast.
In the meantime, we only ate out once this weekend, instead of our usual 2 - 3 times, and with all the menu planning I've been doing since I've been back at work, we rarely eat out during the week. So that helps the budget tremendously!
So I guess this pantry challenge update wasn't much of an update, more a bunch of ramblings from a woman who thinks too much about food and really should go to bed, huh? :-)