In addition, I had $36.59 left in the September grocery budget. I have added that to my budget for the October prayer gathering. I usually budget $150 for the prayer gathering. So, this year, I have $186.59 in my budget for the prayer gathering expenses.
I generally add the monthly grocery budget and the prayer gathering budget together and do not separate the purchases into household groceries and prayer gathering supplies. I use items I have already bought with the regular grocery budget (such as rice, some canned items, cooking oil, spices and condiments, etc.) for the prayer gathering dinner and will be using leftovers from the prayer gathering dinner in my meals, later. So, the regular grocery budget and the prayer gathering budget will be combined.
October grocery/prayer gathering budget = $75 + $186.59 = $261.59
Week 1 grocery shopping:
I did a little grocery shopping at the dollar store on October 2:
|October 2 Groceries|
I bought some bananas, a can of table cream, and a box of brown sugar from the dollar store. The box of sugar was $.99, the can of table cream was $.99, and the bananas were $.49/lb. and came to $.72 My total came to $2.72.
|October 2 Receipt|
I went grocery shopping, again, on October 3. First, I went to the regular grocery store and bought:
|October 3 Groceries|
1 loaf bread = $1.29
1/2 gallon milk = $1.99
1 7-oz. roast beef cold cuts = $2.99
2 boxes snack crackers on clearance for $1.29 each = $2.58 (will share with daughter)
Total = $8.85
In addition to the grocery items above, I also bought 1 bag of dry cat food ($10.99 + $.99 tax) and 3 cans of tuna in water ($.89@; Dancer gets a spoonful of it as a treat, although he seems to have tired of it of late; I have checked with the vet and have been told it's OK to do so; one can usually lasts for at least a week). I have deducted these items from the regular grocery budget, since they are budgeted for separately.
|October 3 Grocery Receipt|
Later in the evening, I went to the Sri Lankan store. One of my cousins went with me, so I am counting our trip to the store and back as "family time" for the family segment of my balanced life goals.
The Sri Lankan store is filled with shelf after shelf of all the types of food I grew up eating, which might be exotic to some of the readers of this blog. This picture of a jar of sauted banana blossom is for Nathalie:
|Jar of Sauted Banana Blossom|
I mostly went to buy Maldive fish pieces since I was all out of it. It's been more than a year since I last bought Maldive fish pieces and the price had doubled! But it is used as a condiment in our cooking and will last me a long time.
I also wanted to see if they had my favorite tea (extra strength), but they didn't; I bought a different type of tea (premium quality) by the same company to try. As my daughter said, I could always use two tea bags if the tea wasn't strong enough for me. But strength is not the only factor; there is a certain flavor that I like, as well. I am afraid I am a little picky when it comes to tea.
I also wanted a packet of joss sticks (incense sticks), rice flour (to make appa or hoppers, which is best described as a type of pancake made with fermented rice flour dough), and savory, spicy snack mixes. Instead of rice flour, I bought an "instant" hopper mix to try; it is supposed to eliminate the step of adding yeast to the rice flour (along with sugar and coconut milk) and leaving for 8-12 hours to ferment. According to the directions on the package of mix, the mixture only needs a 15 minute period of waiting after the coconut milk and sugar is added.
I couldn't decide on just one snack mix, so I bought three! One is known as "murukku", which is made from urad (black lentils) flour. The other two packets contain a thinner variety of murukku mixed with nuts (one has only peanuts, the other has cashew nuts as well and cost a little more), lentils, curry leaves, and chili. These snacks are our equivalent of potato chips, I suppose.
|Purchases from the Sri Lankan Store|
1 packet joss sticks = $1.29
1 packet (100 bags) tea = $4.99
1 jar (400 g; 14 oz.) Maldive fish pieces = $9.99
1 packet hopper mix = $2.49
1 packet murukku = $2.49
1 packet snack mix = $2.99
1 packet snack mix = $3.29
Total = $27.50 (the total actually came to $27.53, but, instead of giving me $.47 cents change back, I was given $.50).
The joss sticks aren't groceries, obviously, so, I will deduct them from the total; my total for groceries at the Sri Lankan store came to $27.50 - $1.29 = $26.21
Total spent on groceries in Week 1:
Dollar store: $2.72
Regular Grocery store: $8.85
Sri Lankan store: $26.21
Total = $2.72 + $8.85 + $26.21 = $37.78
October grocery/prayer gathering budget = $261.59
Amount left in the budget = $261.59 - $37.78 = $223.81
One of the items in the refrigerator at the Sri Lankan store was fresh rambutan, which is a type of fruit:
I was very tempted to buy some, even though they were pricey at $4.99/lb. I think, if my daughter was home, I would have bought some to share with her. Buying them at that price for just myself seemed like too much of an indulgence. However, the store manager gave me, my cousin, and the one other customer who was there, one fruit each to try and dropped 2 additional fruits into our grocery bags, as well!
When I came home, I could barely restrain myself until I took the pictures, to eat the other two fruits!
|Rambutan - Cut Open|
When you cut or peel the outer (inedible) skin, there is a single fruit, inside.
Peeled, it resembles a more familiar lychee fruit. There is a single seed in the middle. We do not generally eat the seed, which is bitter, but I've read that some people roast it and eat it. I don't know how accurate that it. There was a rambutan tree in the garden of my childhood home and we ate a lot of rambutan when it was in season, but we never ate the seeds.
How is your first week of October grocery shopping coming along? Have you eaten rambutan? Is it something you might eat if you find some, either fresh or canned? Have you seen a banana blossom? Did you know that it can be cooked and eaten?