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Sunday, August 1, 2010

Day 1: Farmer's Markets

Welcome to day 1 of the budget challenge for August. My goal is to try to spend $1,200 or less this month. This includes the mortgage, bills, food, fun, and eating out. Basically, I will be paying for all our normal monthly expenses from my $1,200 fund and updating you as the fund dwindles. Last month I went over by $175, this month I would *like* to come in under my goal but we shall see. If you are curious about how we can do this, how much our typical monthly expenses are, and other tips, you can read through all my June posts since June was the first month I attempted this challenge.

My first thrifty tip in order to help you save money is: Shop your local farmer's market! I only am reminded of this because yesterday I had stopped into our local farmer's market. It's been quite some time since I've been to our local farmer's market because I used to go when they had it on Tuesday also, but now it is just on Saturday mornings. I don't know about you, but our Saturday mornings are low key and a bit slow to start so I never get out of the house while the market is still going.

Yesterday was different. My husband is working every other weekend at work, until they can fill a position, so he was gone bright and early yesterday morning. You'll remember in my post yesterday that I had several errands to run and so I loaded the children up and as we drove downtown I spotted the farmer's market. We had 30 minutes left to shop until closing time so we browsed through the tables.

You forget how awesome it is to shop locally and support your fellow neighbors. I chatted with one woman about her soaps and tea blends. I mentioned to an Amish man, while buying the last of his cucumbers, that my cucumbers plants have all but died this year. He asked if they turned all brown and curled up and I told him that they indeed did. He then went on to explain that it is probably a root worm that got down into the root. My children were given cookies by one lady because they were behaving so well and everyone was just in a jolly mood. You miss this type of interaction when shopping at a big box store.

It's not just the mood that is wonderful, but the quality of the produce and the prices as well. Everything is fresh, nothing is shipped, and the majority of it is grown organically. How much greener can you get?

I bought:

1 dozen ears of sweet corn

1 package of a special tea blend

6 cucumbers

1 dozen eggs

for $9 total.

When shopping at the grocery store I noted that the cucumbers were 2/$1, the sweetcorn was $3.99, and if I remember correctly the eggs are $1.29. And you can't buy special blend tea at the store. So I was able to get fresh, organic foods for cheaper than what the store charges for their old, shipped in groceries.

Next week I hope to get there early as the pickings were fairly slim so close to closing time. In order to save money and eat local and fresh...remember your farmer's market!

And for those of you who were following my $400 healthy eating budget plan in July, add the $9 above to my total and I was still able to come in below $400! I'm back to my $75 or less weekly shopping now!


  1. I love shopping at farmers markets. The quality of the produce is fantastic! The interaction between everyone is kind of cozy. It can be a relaxing experience. It is good that your kids can experience this as these will be their memories of when they were little. Hopefully farmers markets will still be going on when they grow up.


  2. I've heard that since the vendors don't want to cart it all home, the end of the market time is also the time to make offers on the produce that is left, so going late to the market could be a chance to make offers on some leftover produce next time you go!

  3. Lots of our garden stuff died out before it did much...too much rain I think. Garrett goes to the Farmer's Market in the early morning when he takes the dog for a walk and we always get eggs there if they have them. They have so much for a small town, and the prices are good.

  4. Hello, it's me your mother-in-law, Starlett. I've been enjoying reading your blog. Great picture of Ben! I enjoy getting fresh vegetables from the garden and from local folks, and I love a bargain. Keep up the good work, I'll be keeping an eye on you.



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