Cooking skills and personal finance.

Just read my money blog (MMB) expenses. As a housewife, the first thing I noticed is grocery spending. MMB’s budget for grocery is $300, dining out is $250. Last year, our budget for grocery was a poor $250. I hit budget several times, which made me very unhappy. I consider myself a deal shopper, which is one of the attributes of a “good” housewife (my definition). When MS Money showed that I always hit budget for grocery shopping, I felt… hurt!!!

So I negotiated with Yannick to increase the grocery budget to $300 this year. I know this is a little like “cheating”, but at that time, psychologically, I really need it.

Now, reading MMB, I just found a new solution to solve the budget problem. Our dining out expense is almost zero! I am attributing this to my successful grocery shopping — I do not just shop for deals, I shop for deals of good quality products. I feed Yannick with premium food from organic food store, so he does not want to dine out any more!

I presented this argument to Yannick immediately, and got an instant budget re-allocation approval– we will allocate $100 out of our $150 dining out budget to my grocery shopping! Now, I will always spend below budget. “Exceed expectation”, that’s the review I want to get for my work!

My next mission–improve my cooking skills. I heard that many famous chefs actually used very common ingredients — such as Heinz ketchup, Morton salt…Why can’t I? Someday, I want to hear Yannick saying: “I would rather have Jacqui’s cabbage soup than Arby’s roasted beef burger” (he sometimes indicates that he wants to go to Wendy’s, but dismissed by me for “health” reasons. 🙂

Improving cooking is one of the most rewarding investments a housewife can make: it keeps the family stay at home, it keeps the family healthy, it keeps the family money in the investment account grow… it keeps the whole family happy!