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$50 Dollar Weekly Grocery Challenge

What is the biggest waste of money every family could avoid?

Marianne Giullian

I think the biggest waste of money is a toss up between junk food (soda, chips, processed food) and fast food. Besides the short term cost out of pocket, there are long term consequences to your health from eating that kind of food.
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What's a great budgeting tip for the new year?

Marianne Giullian

Plan your spending each month. If it isn't in your plan, then don't buy it. If you want it and feel you can't live without it , put it in next month's plan and wait to buy it. If you have any debt, then get rid of it. The pain of paying it off can help you to make wiser decisions in the future. Make sure you have an emergency fund. Things always happen and it is best to be prepared. When you plan your spending, you don't feel guilty about spending money because it is in the plan and you are prepared. Never spend more than you make and save money for the future.
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What's your advice on setting a food budget?

Marianne Giullian

I started doing $50 per week to show that you can eat healthy balanced meals if you had to live on welfare. It was a challenge, but it really is enough. You can check out my blog at http://www.spendwise.org to find meal plans and shopping trips. The most important thing is to stick to what you have decided. I use cash and so I don't go over. You need to be committed. The $50 was for a family of 4 and now down to 3. I would try spending a little less each week until you find a place that you feel is right for you. I would imagine somewhere around 15-25 dollars per person per week.
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What's your best tip for easing the impact of holiday house guests?

Marianne Giullian

Simplify cooking. Make things ahead of time if you can or just do the Costco run and don't worry about everything being homemade. Figure out a way to simplify gift giving if it is for Christmas. Maybe even do a while elephant thing so you don't have to spend a lot of money on gifts as well as the food. Make cookies together and go caroling or just buy the prepackaged sugar cookies and get everyone out doing something fun.
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