It’s me again…Shelby. As promised, one of the things I’m going to focus on is exactly what this “Homestead Experiment” is going to cost us. And any scientist knows (no, I’m not one), any experiment must have at least one hypothesis to work from.
Our hypothesis: Homesteading will have a positive impact on our grocery spending.
I’ve kept this a bit vague, not actually saying it will reduce our grocery spending. Rather, we understand that buying organic, free-range, and fair-trade whatchamacallits might cause some things to be higher. But we’re hoping that other ventures, such as, hopefully, having chickens for both eggs and…well…you know…will reduce other grocery costs.
A “positive impact” for us could, certainly, be defined as a lower grocery bill. And if that happens, I’ll be shouting “Hallelujah!” But it could also be defined as a grocery bill that simply stays the same. And, all the while, our family revels in its enhanced self-sufficiency and, even more, enjoys a healthier lifestyle.
And now for the starting point. I crunched a few quick numbers to determine our average monthly grocery spending. (Insert drum roll here!)
Our average spending for groceries is $318 per month at present.
We know some spend more and some spend less, depending on the size of family. FYI: Ours is a family of five—no teenagers (a key distinction for many, I’m sure). And this is NOT the totality of our Walmart, Target, Meijer, Kroger, or Giant Eagle spending. Believe me, I need my toothpaste, mouthwash, and hair gel. And, while my dear wife has definitely entered the realm of “make-your-own” whatever, there are a few lines I don’t think I can cross.
So, for the purpose of our experiment, I’m just talking food–people food. Of course, if your dog eats people food, then I have a quick-and-easy way to trim your grocery budget. It’s called dog food. You could get a little of that “positive impact” in a hurry!
So now we have a baseline to work from. Stay tuned.
Happy homesteading! —Shelby
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