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Here comes the last food expense report of the year 2017. Time flies!
As expected in November, our December food budget just went through the roof for three main reasons:
1. We went on a four-day trip to another city and ate out most of the time.
2. We hosted a Christmas hotpot party at our house.
3. Mr. FAF’s cousin stayed with us for 10 days. That added to both our groceries and eating out costs, but we were happy to have him.
We took him out shopping and sightseeing and thus ate out more than usual.
Our food expenses for December were for three adults, one teenager, and one toddler (5 people in total).
We ended up not going to a steak house to celebrate my mother-in-law’s birthday because she didn’t want us to spend the money.
We ended up getting her a birthday cake and threw her a birthday party on our trip instead.
After 9 months of publishing the food expense reports, I have decided to put a hold on this project for three reasons:
— Our groceries and what we eat tend to stay the same from month to month although the expenses fluctuate.
— Given the repetition, I have seen engagement and pageviews of the reports go down significantly compared to three months ago.
— Completing a food expense report takes me at least 4-5 hours (i.e. keeping track of all the receipts, entering all the numbers, taking photos). I started to dread taking all of the groceries out of the plastic bags, putting them on the table to take pictures, putting them back in the plastic bags, and loading everything into the fridge. It’s a time-consuming process with a decreasing rate of return. I think it’s a sign that I need to take a break for a while. I will find other ways to keep track of how much we spend on food each month.
If you missed my previous food expense reports, you can check them out below:
November 2017 Food Expense Report – $744.67
October 2017 Food Expense Report – $487.9
September 2017 Food Expense Report – $1,106.2
August 2017 Food Expense Report – $844.26
April 2017 Food Expense Report – $80.39
March 2017 Food Expense Report – $87.52
Without further ado, these are our food expenses for December, the last month of 2017.
December 2017 Food Expenses: $1,346.63
Week 1 (Dec 1-10) – $146.72
GROCERIES – $127.38
Eggplant, cucumbers, mandarins, bananas, green onions, spiced tofu, taro, persimmons, Chinese pears, fried dough balls, squash, edamame & tofu
Mama chicken flavor instant noodles, pork bones, mackerel, shrimp, tofu skin, dried shrimp noodles, dried glass noodles, Chinese cabbage & chives
WHAT WE ATE AT HOME
Steamed yam, stir-fried pork, and tofu soup
EATING OUT – $19.34
Our family went to Walmart to pick up a couple of things and had dim sum for lunch. We were about to eat leftovers that day, but our appetite won.
Siu mai, pork buns, pork ribs, tripe, shrimp wrapped in tofu skin
Week 2 (Dec 11-17) – $678.79
GROCERIES – $360.06
We went out of groceries completely after the first week, so Mr. FAF stocked up the fridge and pantry with $360 worth of food from Costco and the Vietnamese store.
Eggs, oat grains, whole milk, cashews, croissant, almond dark chocolate, bananas, sweet potatoes, dinner rolls, wonton noodles, and potatoes
Vietnamese grocery store
Pork bones, shrimp, ground pork, pork liver, pork stomach, gluten balls, shrimp chips, sesame power drink, tofu skin, bean sprouts, eggplants, mandarins, lotus roots, spiced tofu, black bean paste, bell peppers, cilantro, and spinach
Green onions, chives, eggplants, squash, zucchini, lotus roots, spiced tofu, cucumbers, string beans, cabbage, bok choy, napa cabbage, and carrots
EATING OUT – $318.73
Below are some of the foods we had on our trip to attend Mr. FAF’s graduation ceremony in another city. The hotel we stayed at provided breakfast, so we ate out for lunch and dinner the rest of the time.
Breakfast at the hotel (roasted potatoes, scrambled eggs & waffle) & birthday cake for my MIL
Pork bones stir-fried with lotus roots, beef & rice
I didn’t take any food photos on day 2 since we were always on the go. And I was too hungry to take pictures.
Chicken slow-cooked with potatoes and flat noodles, tofu and bok boy soup, and beef stew
Jelly fish (appetizer) and seafood soup
Fried chicken & spicy chicken
Week 3 (Dec 18-24) – $276.55
GROCERIES – $203.05
Wantons, tofu skin, coconut milk, tea, spiced tofu, shrimp, ox tail, beef, lamb, snacks (for Mr. FAF’s cousin), pork bones, tofu, dumplings, green onions, sushi sticks, smoked pork, seaweed salad, hotpot broth, mandarins, chestnuts & tofu knots.
WHAT WE ATE AT HOME
We had a hotpot at home to celebrate Christmas. I really liked the crab sticks.
Our Christmas hotpot: tofu knots, crab sticks, lamb & beef (with more ingredients to be added later)
EATING OUT – $73.5
Mr. FAF and I took his cousin to the outlets. We had dinner at a Chinese buffet afterwards.
Grilled salmon, dumplings, shrimp, roasted duck, shrimp, crab cake, French fries & sushi
Week 4 (Dec 25-31) – $244.57
GROCERIES – $200.57
Great Wall – $141.85
Celery, onions, bok choy, ginger, jalapeno, cilantro, seaweed, sweet potatoes, cabbage, bell pepper, taro, napa cabbage, egg noodles, dried shrimp noodles, tofu, spiced tofu, eggplant, tomatoes, ground pork, pork stomach, pork ribs, and fish
Shoppers – $58.72
We bought chicken, bananas, milk, apples, oranges, cereal, and some veggies from Shoppers.
WHAT WE ATE AT HOME
Steamed yam, meatball & veggie soup, cucumber salad, stir-fried eggplant, braised mackerel & seaweed salad
EATING OUT – $44
We took Mr. FAF’s cousin out to see DC. My MIL and Baby FAF also came with us. We went to a Canto buffet for lunch.
Fried dough dipped in congee, rice cake, shrimp dumplings, siu mai, pork and shrimp wrapped in tofu skin, deep-fried shrimp, clams, barbecued chicken & tuna sushi
We overspent again in December, but I’m ok with it. It’s the holiday season, and we had a family member visiting for ten days.
I hope you enjoyed the series so far. Thank you so much for following us on our food expense journey!