In this thought-provoking post over at Faith and Family Live, Danielle asks “How much do you spend on groceries?” After adding my own thoughts and comparing my spending to that of other families, it hit me.
What we spend on groceries compared to others is irrelevant. I can’t evaluate my family’s food budget next to another family’s without considering our needs, food availability and costs, lifestyle, and nutrition (as we know it).
- Does your store take coupons?
- Do you have access to farm eggs and raw milk?
- Do you know how to cook at all?
- Are you feeding a family of 5 with three small children or three teenagers?
- Do you live in a tourist trap?
- Do you prefer to buy locally?
- Is there a CSA in your area and do you participate?
- Do you strive for a whole foods diet or eat whatever’s cheap?
All factors that will ultimately affect the cost of our food. It’s not about what we’re spending. It’s not about how we measure up to other families. It’s about how we are stewarding our food purchases.
Tips that we can all use to effectively manage our own, unique food spending:
- Pray over our spending. God is in the details!
- Prepare and consume more food for nourishment rather than pleasure.
- Plan our spending. By planning a menu we are better able to utilize what we purchase.
- Eat simple, whole foods as much as possible. The fancier or more refined food gets, the more (sometimes) it costs and the less (nearly always) it nourishes.
What do you think? How big a deal is your grocery budget? Is it a game of “how low can you go?” Is it worth your worry? Do you compare your budget to others?
This post is linked to Frugal Friday.