The economy is doing better than it has in years, but that doesn’t mean you should go spending money with wanton abandon. You’ve still got to be strategic. The key to sustainable forward growth is good financial stewardship. While it’s okay to splurge a little bit on special occasions, maintaining a conscientious approach is still recommendable.
Especially if you’re part of a military family which travels regularly, it makes sense to make grocery shopping something that has been optimized in a tactical manner. There are a few things you can do to help maximize savings and increased wages going forward, and they will be explored here.
Always Hit Your Goals
First, planning your grocery shopping is essential. Ideally, you should be on a regular schedule wherein every one-to-four weeks you go out and get more provisions. A good way to make this work is to balance fresh goods with those designed to retain their freshness perpetually. Rice, frozen vegetables, and frozen meats can last months or years. Plan meals out so that you’ve got a few options available when provisions are low toward the end of your spending cycle.
In order to know what you’re going to need, you’ll need to err on the side of caution, and you’ll need to slightly overshoot the target. Especially if your military family has a number of growing young ones, their intake is continuously going to expand. A child of four won’t eat as much as a child of eight, and a child of sixteen will outpace them both.
This means buying on a curve. You and your husband will be relatively constant, and likely enough the two of you will be playing the dieting game with varying levels of success. Structuring shopping around this reality makes a lot of sense—especially during the holidays,when people are apt to eat more than they usually would.
So figure out your intake and that of the children, then plot an increasing curve as the young ones grow. Meter that with goods that can be stored over the long-term and made into varying dishes toward the end of a buying cycle.
Prime Shopping Days
Next, you need to plan specifically for the holidays. Christmas and Thanksgiving require turkeys—that’s just how it is! You need to get a couple of big birds. New Year’s will require candies and champagne—you might be having a party. Also, you’ll want treats for Christmas stockings. For all these things there are coupons, and leftovers will also be likely. Have the right storage containers!
Next, consider prime shopping days. Black Friday is being subsumed by digital buying on the web; and some of the greatest “deal” days are going to be right after Christmas. Honestly, you’re not going to get the discounts you could the day after Thanksgiving.
This is a retailer holiday, and they’ll mark up goods beforehand so they can appear more greatly discounted when America’s annual consumer riot commences. Yeah, you might get a TV for cheap; you might also get an elbow to the nose, and you’ll remember that longer—so why take the damage?
Missing The Masses and Yet Seeing Savings
A better choice is shopping now, and in the days right after black Friday. Also, try to buy as natural as you can. Frozen foods can be preserved, but foods with preservatives contain chemicals that are bad for you. Things which are too sugary feed the wrong kind of micro-organisms in your digestive tract, and can lead to increased weight gain.
If you eat healthy you’ll be in a greater body-mind balance, and your appetite will be more healthy, which additionally will save you money over time. So, to review, don’t just shop on black Friday—other days can be lucrative—plan your spending out well in advance, shop on a curve, use coupons, and buy healthy. These tips are prescient during the holidays, but useful year-round as well.
This post was written by Stephanie of Military Travel Mama. She is the wife of a military professional and mother to two children. Follow her blog for more about military life, military discounts, family trips, healthy eating, and parenthood.