I've worked hard on keeping our expenses down this year. We have so many places where we could be spending money it is sometimes hard to juggle. Our weakest point in our budget is our grocery spending and our spending for eating out. Over this last year my husband and I have worked hard on getting both under control and I think we have done pretty well.
We use our crockpot often to avoid the want to go out eat, because we "don't have anything to eat", we also keep a frozen pizza in the freezer for an easy night. My husband and I switch off cooking and that helps a lot. When we do go out we use often groupon or living social to find a good deal. We do have favorite restaurants that we do pay full price but it is rare. Honestly, the hardest part about not eating out was getting used to it. Now, I rarely really want to go out but it took over six months to get over the want to go out every week.
Grocery shopping and staying under budget took some time too. At first we were staying under budget but running out of food by the end of the week and not eating well. We started eating better and started spending more but we could not afford it in the long term. We found a great store for cheap meat, started finding the stores with the cheapest prices and the store that was best for cherry picking. Cherry picking means that most items were more expensive at this store but certain deal would be very cheap and worth it to stop by. We started using coupon match up blogs and planning our meals around what we had in the freezer, cabinets and what was on sale. We also planted a small garden, we are in our second year of it. Over time we got our spending down about $20 and we are eating extremely well. It does take some planning and some time but it is so worth it to me.