Thank goodness Christmas is over. I wasn't feeling it this year at all, given that half the family have been ill and then my uncle suffered a heart attack on Christmas Day. He survived it but is in the hospital post cardiac surgery. The minimal decorating that was accomplished here has already been taken down and packed away, three cheers for plastic Christmas trees that fold flat in a box.
There are a number of upheavals occurring within our family at the moment, all as a result of relationships that seem to be generally coming undone. Long term relationships seem to be failing and that was all too apparent at the family Christmas parties we reluctantly attended. Never mind turkeys and cake, the air could've been cut with a knife too. We all have our problems.
I totaled up our yearly spending and was surprised/not surprised to see that we spent $13,000 on food in 2016. Obviously, we are too indulgent. Sometimes, we have been too generous. On those rare occasions that we went to restaurants to celebrate family events, we picked up the tab. I don't mind picking up the tab but it seems that the people we go out to dinner with never reciprocate and I'm not OK with that any longer. It's not OK to take us for granted, to assume that we are always going to pay. Restaurants will be off the menu for the most part in 2017, unless the spouse and I are away on trips.
2017 will be different. I have been reading other people's blogs and their food spending is practically half of ours. $7500 seems to be a figure to shoot for so, in 2017, my goal is to stay under $7500. That gives me a grocery budget of $144 a week, to include Starbucks and restaurants which will now, surely, be nixed because we won't be able to spend on those luxuries. I think I can make it happen on $144 and will give it a darn good try.
Our other spending for 2016 has been well within limits, no horrible surprises there. Something has to be done though about the food and the eating. Smaller portion sizes for sure, less alcohol, better meal planning.