Money Where Your Mouth Is: February 2012

It’s update time.

Just to re-cap, I started the new year with a goal: I wanted to learn just how I spend my money on food. Do I trade it with local culinary artisans? National corporations?

After some debate over which delineations mattered, I made a list of categories into which I would divide my purchases —  both for groceries and for restaurants — and began the semi-tedious task of tracking every single receipt. My first month of tracking gave me some results that were expected, and some that surprised me.

Here are the results for February:

On this front, the numbers are almost identical to January. I did have a few extra runs to the big box grocery store close to my apartment this month, and to be totally honest, I’m not exactly sure why. Other than I must have really planned meals poorly that week. My goal for this month is to only hit the grocery store once a week, which should save food dollars, gas dollars, and time dollars. Yes time dollars.

But look! Grocery dollars may have been the same, but restaurant dollars show major improvement! I had friends in town one weekend and my parents in town for almost a week, which gave me opportunities to go outside my normal restaurant box and show off Durham’s local flavor. We’ll see how it keeps up when I am not entertaining guests…

So on goes the tracking. And finally, as promised, if you want to track as well, I’ve uploaded the spreadsheet I’m using. You can download it at the link below… it’s pretty smart and makes all your numbers turn into graphs. Poof! Time to get excited.

Food Dollar Graphs

Happy tracking!