Mid-December, and I’m going through periods where it feels very Christmasy because so many people are going big on decorations this year, and periods where I’m still kind of in denial/limbo with time; what even is it, you know? Between a 6 month old baby and all *waves hands helplessly* THIS stuff… who knows what day it is.
We continue to count our blessings in a big way. I am in a stable job, with a team I love, where I can work from home. We have a home. We were able to get a folding table so I could move my work station upstairs and be warm for the winter. Now my commute is literally 1 foot from my bed, which is both good and bad in ways.
Baby is growing and learning and becoming more and more delightful by the day. He is settling into a more predictable pattern of feeding and naps, and sleeps through the night a little more than half the time. This is *peak* baby cuteness, and I am so thankful for this time to fully enjoy and savor it. He will be crawling and walking and terrorizing us and the dogs in no time!
Anyways, we are also blessed with steady income, which means a stable grocery budget. Our budget has definitely gone up, as food prices keep inching upwards and now I’m eating a bit more from breastfeeding, as well as kiddo is trying solids too.
So we shoot for $400-500 a month now, between groceries and takeout. We are trying to order once a week from local independent restaurants since this all happened.
Going into December, we had a fair stock of meats from the most recent Butcher Box, but were down to nearly no fresh produce as I am shopping only every other week now. So I shop less often, but bigger when I do. I try to rotate between canned goods, pantry staples like flour/rice/tortillas, frozen items, and pick up the fresh stuff each time.
A run to ALDI restocked the dairy, oodles of fresh produce to last 2 weeks, and some more meats that I could individually package for the boy, as Veganuary is coming up soon!
Hubs will eat some of the same things, but I do not expect him to be fully on board for a whole month. Therefore, I put chicken quarters and 1/2 pounds of meat in the freezer, so he can add to whatever we are having or whip up some burritos anytime.
|ALDI – 12/10/2020||$132.34|
|meatless sausages 4||2.89||greek yogurts mixins 4||3.56||guacamole 2||5.98||frozen broccoli 4||3.4|
|1lb deli ham||2.95||blueberry rasp yogurt 12||3.84||almond milk 2||3.58||spring mix||3.59||quart bags||1.89|
|salmon side||13.46||cottage cheese 2||3.18||baby teething rusks||1.79||brussels sprouts||1.49||oreos 2*||3.1|
|3lb ground beef||7.95||plain greek yogurt||3.29||baby blueberry puffs||1.15||spinach||1.19|
|whole chicken||4.65||unsalted butter 2||3.58||baby pouch prune||0.79||romaine||2.19|
|chicken quarters||5.04||eggz 3 dozen||1.74||mayo||1.79||grape tomato||1.79||tax||2.7|
|shredded cheese 2||5.58||pita chips||2.29||3 bell peppers||2.69|
|sliced cheese 2||3.58||pumpkin seeds||2.05||cauliflower||2.29|
|mild salsa||1.9||zucchini 3 1.67lb||1.99|
|pinto beans 4lb||2.99||yellow squash 3 1.65lb||1.96|
|potato 10lb||3.89||broccoli crowns 1.63lb||2.36|
|red potato 5lb||2.89||avocado 5||2.19|
*I think ALDI brand Oreos are far superior, sorry Nabisco. They are more chocolatey and crunchy, which I love. They have become my absolute favorite indulgence. Too bad the Bitches Get Riches team didn’t have an ALDI to include them in their ranked chocolate cookie taste test! ALDI would have won for sure.
I also got some baby puffs and teething biscuits to try out. I’m so excited to have him try avocado for the first time! Snacks will include hard boiled eggs, bananas and apples, and homemade hummus with peppers and pita chips.
The meal plan includes lots of salads and fresh veggie sides. We will have salmon, crock pot lasagna, and some sort of mexi dish for sure. I will probably also make beans and rice, some sort of soup, and lots of potato dishes. Half of the salmon I will use to make my own lox! It is super easy, and way cheaper than buying it.
Then the week before Christmas, I did another stock up run to Harris Teeter to get things we would need for Christmas. Our parents both drove in from out of town, to spend kiddo’s first Christmas together!
We planned for at least 1 big fancy dinner and several smaller meals plus some takeout. I had been watching the Great British Bakeoff, and was inspired to make a super fancy sausage wreath! It was my first time working with puff pastry, and I think I cooked it slightly too long, but overall I was quite pleased.
It was definitely a holiday that no one expected, but we still got to spend time together and that is what is most important.
I also made some more sweets, because you must. I did a big batch of chocolate peanut butter Buckeyes, which I shared with some neighbors, and also made a big batch of Cracker Cookies with mom while she was here.
|chobani 4pk x2||3.99||HT Peanut butter x2||3.98||can whole plums||0.99||fizzy water cans||2|
|yogurts 10||4||wheat cheerios||1.49||can mandarin oranges||1.98||frozen choc chip cookies x2||3.98|
|half and half||1.69||dry chickpeas 3lb||3.87||markdown produce||4.77||pecan pie||4.99|
|sliced cheddar 24||4.99||canned beans x6||2.94||bananas||2.07||puff pastry||5.49|
|block cheddar||1.49||simmer sauces x2||4||carrots 10lb||5.99||popcorn||1.5|
|block colby jack||1.49||granola cereal||2.99||sweet potatoes||1.43||ice breakers||7.98|
|vanilla ice cream||2.79||maple syrup||4.99||canned peaches||3.75||choc chips x3||6|
|gerber splashers x2||5.68||broccoli/carrot mix x2||5||lara bar x3||3|
|rice x2||3||baby carrots||0.99|
|kalamata olives x2||7|
|less sugar wild||3.99|
|brussels sprouts x2||5||tax||7.49|
We had a wonderful holiday, with lots of presents, looking at lights, walks outside, and baby giggles. My mom taught me another type of crochet stitch, and brought me some super soft yarn. So now I have a scarf project, ETA 2025. 😀
We also celebrated another birthday season, with more presents, more sweets, and some lovely alone time for me! Once you have a kid, it’s amazing how hard it is to find any time to do literally anything that requires two hands, and/or some amount of focus.
Moving into January, we have tons of leftovers still from the holidays. We have several containers of dirt cake, shredded meats from the boy’s request for “the ultimate burrito” on his birthday, lots of cookies still, etc. So we are eating up those things, and then will attempt a more vegan-ish rest of January!