Financially Independent, Retired Early(ish) at 57.

I did some Maths!

HELP written on test

This morning I was noodling around on the Simple Savings forum when someone posted a comment about the cost of groceries. This made me wonder – how were we tracking this year compared to last?

David27 has moved out in all but name, so SURELY we’d be doing better?

Plus we have a VERY well-stocked Zombie Apocalypse cupboard that I beefed up when covid raised its ugly head. This means that we don’t go to the supermarket very often, especially when we’re in lockdowns. The plague is a very good reason to avoid people. It also means that you avoid impulse buys when you pop in for a litre of milk, for example.

Also, remember all of those pumpkins we grew? We’re just finishing the last one, months after we picked them all. That crop alone would have saved us something. We’ve eaten a lot of pumpkin over the last few months and I’ve even invented a pumpkin pasta bake, just to use up even more. We’re still eating other things from the garden, though far less in winter.

So how are we tracking?

I knew this would require some advanced Maths. Fortunately, my laptop has a calculator. I pulled up my ‘Yearly Expenses’ chart and had a look.

Chart of grocery spending.


Kids are expensive to feed, especially when they turn into men. You can see how the grocery bill drops as a couple of them left home. It used to be even more expensive when I had 4 adult men to feed, but Tom was already gone by the time I started tallying up figures.

Roughly speaking, I divided up 9K (2020’s number, rounded up) by 12. That gave me an average monthly figure.

Then I multiplied it by 7. We’re in July, the 7th month. (I know Maths people will say that we still have 6 days to go before July is done, but all I wanted was a rough idea.)

Roughly speaking, I’ve spent around $1,800 LESS than I did this time last year. I’m pretty pleased with that.

Hmmm… how much cheaper will it be when Ryan26 moves out? Maybe I should start dropping hints???

But then, maybe not. He’ll probably look at me like this:

Sad bear looking sad.

Well, I’m exhausted after all that intensive brain work. Time for a lime verbena tea!


  1. Girt

    Wow! That is so great. We are going terribly on the food cost in lockdown. It is a great comfort to think how much of that expense is child related.

    • FrogdancerJones

      They can certainly eat a lot!
      When someone moves out, after a while you can tell what they eat lots of. David27, for example, eats a lot of butter, yoghurt, frozen fruit and tinned pineapple.

  2. Lisa Kelly

    Amazingly frugal numbers there and it’s incredible to see the impact of men-children to the grocery costs. I am too scared to drill down too deep into my grocery numbers but maybe I should lol.

    • FrogdancerJones

      You should. It’ll give you a silver lining to look forward to when the kids eventually fly the nest.

      • Lisa Kelly

        Hahaha – our son is up on the Gold Coast at the moment with football in a “sporting bubble” and we don’t know when he will be able to come home. We are getting a little taste of empty nester life and I’m not gonna lie, it’s not too bad!!!

  3. Steve

    Excellent maths.
    Positive trend.

    Our overall food bills have taken a dive in the last year since our daughter and grandson moved out in July 2020.

    Now the FY20/21 alcohol expense however….

    • FrogdancerJones

      I haven’t forgotten that I still owe you a bottla red.

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