Budget // Groceries + Meal Plan // Week Three & Four

I was going so strong with our budget and meal plan and then I decided to do a two week meal plan…

The initial idea was as a result of re-reading Ashley’s post about shopping for two weeks and saving money.  I figured that while I haven’t always been successful at two week meal plans and shopping that I would take on the challenge and see if I could indeed save money. The second motivator was that I needed to make a Trader Joe’s trip and since I try to only go there every 4-6 weeks it would be the perfect timing.

Here is how that entire plan failed:

Fail 1. Well my trip to Trader Joe’s had me going off my list and picking up extras that I hadn’t planned on.

Fail 2. I decided to go shopping at Fred Meyer first thing on Saturday morning so that I could have my shopping out the way and we could just enjoy the weekend. Plus we had no food for lunch. Well that was a TERRIBLE idea as nothing was restocked and I ended up having to make a lot of substitutions.

Fail 3. Due to Fail #2 I wasn’t was well stocked with fruits and veggies as we normally are and that resulted in us going out to eat twice this past week – both times for lunch.

Fail 4. I ended up going over budget for these two weeks.

Fail 5. I ended up doing a lot of extra grocery shopping because of our lack of produce from Fred Meyer.

Fail 6. We ended up eating out more in the last 10 days than we had in the previous three weeks.

Fail 7. I didn’t follow all of Ashley’s suggestions/”rules” to really make two weeks work.

Fred Meyer: $46.53

Bob’s Red Mill: $15

Trader Joe’s: $86.47

PSU Farmers Market: $16

Whole Foods: $31.84 + $35

Plus I might still need to pick up a few more things before the weekend.

Total: $219.84

What I Learned

Two week grocery/meal plans give me anxiety. Seriously. I felt so anxious shopping the first week because I knew I would still need to pick up some produce the second week that I just didn’t want to go over budget. In the end I ended up abandoning my meal plan all together and this week we are just winging it based on the few items I picked up at Whole Foods and the Farmers Market and what we had leftover.

Trips to Trader Joe’s need to happen more frequently and be more focused so I don’t pick up non-essentials. That being said I need to leave a few empty spots on my grocery list so I can pick up “treat”/non-list items without going over budget.

I really enjoy writing meal plans each week and doing my shopping each week. There is something therapeutic to me about going through this process. I also seem to save more money, although only time will tell with that one.

While Ashley had some good points two week meal plans/shopping trips are not for me. However, regardless of whether you shop once per week or once per month her tips apply so check out her post.


Fit Pregnancy | Latourell Falls Hike

We have really been trying to get out and take advantage of the beautiful weekend weather here in Oregon. Two weekends ago we hiked up to Wahclella Falls and had a great time so this past weekend we decided to hike Latourell Falls.While I knew that this hike was going to be more challenging I didn’t expect it to be quite as much of a challenge as it was for me.

LatourellFalls_6245 LatourellFalls_6242
When choosing a hike I was looking for something that was had an elevation gain no more than 550ft and was between 2-3 miles round trip. Well, Latourell Falls hike has an elevation gain for 540ft and is 2.4 miles round trip. I thought this would be the perfect hike! Well it was a great hike but shortly into it (I’m talking about a half mile in) it really started to kick my ass. Who knew a 540ft elevation gain was really a lot more than I thought? To top it off the hike begins at a higher elevation than the Wahclella Falls Hike and add in that I’m a week further along in this pregnancy which also makes hikes more challenging.

LatourellFalls_6255 Anyways I brought my hiking polls with me just in case I decided that I might need a little extra support and when we reached the half mile point and I realized we still had to go up and up and up before we started to go down (a little more up) and then down, down, down I decided that it was time to take them out. Looking back at things I should have started with them from the beginning because it this hike started with a pretty steep incline right from the start, at least there are lots of switch backs; if we had been in VT doing this hike we would have been going straight up!

By the time we reached the half way point I was slowly treking along behind Neil who was wearing Edith. Feeling proud that at nearly 22 weeks pregnant I was out there hiking but also feeling a little embarrassed at just how slow I was going and remembering back to the 10-15 mile hikes that Neil and I used to do back in VT where to be quite honest the trails were considerably harder in comparison.

LatourellFallsTwoForFitness_6289 We completed the hike and it felt great but let me tell you that all future hikes will be ones in the easy category with a 400ft or less elevation gain because while I managed to do this hike I know that as my pregnancy progresses that hikes categorized as ‘easy’ are a better option for me!

Q: What are you favorite types of hikes? Have you hiked in Oregon?

P.S. This is the link to the hike we did around Latourell Falls.

Weekly Meals & Workouts | 2

Photo from this past weekends hike.

Photo from this past weekends hike.

Weekly Workouts:

Saturday: Family Walks

Sunday: 2 Mile Hike to Wahclella Falls Hike See more photos here.

Monday: Family Walk

Tuesday: Family Walk

Wednesday: Off

Thursday: Off

Weekly Eats:

This week I didn’t do as good of a job at photographing all my meals (seriously I don’t know how some bloggers do it) but I did get a few shots. I haven’t discussed our budget or meal plan yet but that is coming up next week. We did things a little different this time around so I’ll be sharing the pros and cons of that and what we have learned this month. Until then here are some of my eats this week!

Weekly Eats- Eggplant Pasta Bowl
Eggplant Pasta Bowl (recipe to come)
Weekly Eats- Falafel Bowl
Falafel Bowl –> Falafel Recipe Here.
Weekly Eats- Burrito Bowl
Black Bean Burrito Bowl –> Inspired by this recipe.

Smoked Paprika Home Fries (find out where you can get the recipe here) Morning Star- Meatless Monday- Buffalo Fries Buffalo Chik’n Fires (recipe here)

Other things I ate this week included Ethiopian from an awesome food cart for lunch, homemade pizza, mega veggie sandwich, tofu salad sandwich, gluten free mac and cheese, banana bread and Neil’s Thai leftovers from our foodcart lunch.

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Budget // Groceries + Meal Plan // Week Two

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