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Category: Family, Fun & Holidays

Hospitality on a $70 Budget + GREAT deals at Kroger this weekend!

You can show hospitality even on a small grocery budget! This post is so inspiring!!

I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 grocery budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

Note: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and we will be compensated if you click through and sign up. Read our disclosure policy here.

One of the best parts of this $70/week grocery budget challenge is not that we’re saving a few hundred dollars every month (though I’m stoked about that!) nor is it the fact that I’ve been re-invigorated to fill our freezer with food (we currently have close to 15 meals in there and I’m slowly adding to the stash every week!).

The best part is that buying ahead and stocking up on the sales and markdowns and being more of a strategic shopper means we have a lot more food at our house at any one given time — which means that spontaneous hospitality is so much easier to pull off!

Wednesday morning, I had the idea to invite a mom and her four kids over for dinner. She just recently moved to the area with her kids and I well remember what a big move like that is like!

I looked in our fridge and cupboards and realized I had just bought 7 pounds of marked down meat the day before, plus I had corn on the cob, marked down potatoes, and some frozen broccoli.

So we invited her family over plus two other families from church. I texted everyone and said that I was just making what I already had on hand. It wouldn’t be anything fancy, but we’d love to have them!

We ended up having 18 people for dinner — and we had plenty of food! Meatballs, mashed potatoes, corn on the cob, roasted broccoli, and the other women offered to bring salad, mac and cheese, and fruit.

It was simple, it was inexpensive, and it was an evening of laughter, great conversation, and games.

Hospitality doesn’t have to require a lot of extra time or special ingredients. It doesn’t even mean you need to spend more $$ to pull off.

Hospitality is about welcoming people into your real life and bringing your real, imperfect selves to the table. It’s about saying, “Welcome! I want to share what we have with you. Come as you are and pull up a chair!”

While I was working on making food for our guests on Wednesday, Kaitlynn made two dinners’ worth of Spaghetti Casserole. We just made up the recipe using pasta we had gotten marked down, cheese I got on sale, pasta sauce I got from Aldi, ground sausage I got marked down, and cottage cheese I had gotten marked down and had frozen.

Kroger has some GREAT sales this weekend! Download their digital coupons (they are good through Monday evening) to get Seedless Watermelon for just $1.99 each (you can purchase up to 5 watermelon in one transaction at this price).

They also have Kroger Ice Cream Sandwiches and Fruit Bars for just $0.99 per box with the digital coupon (you can get up to 5 boxes in one transaction at this price).

I got the watermelon to take to a picnic we’re attending tonight where we’re supposed to bring enough of a side dish to feed 15 people and I got the ice cream sandwiches for tomorrow evening since we’re having two families over for pizza!

My total for the 5 boxes of bars/ice cream sandwiches + the watermelon was $9.49 — bringing my grand total for this week in grocery expenditures to $68, $2 under my $70 grocery budget!

Total spent so far this week: $68 (Yes! $68 even!)

Total left to spend: $2

Rebates: $1.50 Ibotta rebate for buying the 2 Fage yogurts, $0.25 Ibotta rebate for submitting my receipt, + a second $0.25 Ibotta rebate for submitting another receipt.

See our $70 menu plan for this week. See all my posts about our $70 grocery budget here.

This Week’s $70 Menu Plan + Saturday’s Kroger Stock-Up Shopping Trip

This $70 Grocery Budget Challenge for a family of 5 is SO inspiring!! Follow along for all kinds of great menu planning ideas and savings tips!

I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 grocery budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

Note: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and we will be compensated if you click through and sign up. Read our disclosure policy here.

I had every intention of getting these Southwest Rollups done for Friday’s Freezer Cooking post. But alas I productively procrastinated on them and didn’t get them done before I had to get that post done.

But I did get them done! We had one pan for dinner that night and I put two bags of rollups in the freezer.

This is such a simple, frugal, and delicious recipe that we have loved for YEARS.

In fact, it would be fascinating to see how many of these I have made over the years. It’s probably an insane number! 🙂

Fun fact: This was a recipe that Jesse’s family loved and I love that it’s become one of our family favorites. These make such great quick lunches or snacks!

The freezer is filling up!! We currently have 9 dinners, 3 breakfasts, and 2 desserts in there. I’m aiming to have 30 meals in here by the end of June. We’ll see!

Kroger has been having fantastic Saturday only sales in recent weeks.

I was thrilled with the butter and water sale — two items that we use a lot!

You could buy up to 5 packs of butter for $1.99 each with the digital coupon — so, of course, I bought 5! We will stick these in the freezer and they should hopefully last us for two months (we usually use about 2 to 2 1/2 sticks of butter per week).

And I bought 3 cases of water — I found out later that the 32-packs were included in this sale. But they weren’t marked as such at our store, so oh well! We usually wash and re-use water bottles at least a few times before tossing them so this should (hopefully) last us all summer and will be so handy for time at the pool and road trips and other summer adventures!

Kroger Shopping Trip — $28.47

  • 5 packages of Kroger butter — $1.99 each with Saturday Digital Coupon offer
  • 3 cases of water — $1.99 each with Saturday Digital Coupon offer
  • 1 Larabar — FREE Friday Digital coupon offer
  • Chocolate syrup — $1.59
  • Disposable bowls — $2
  • 1 yogurt — marked down to $0.29
  • 2 Fage yogurts — marked down to $0.49 each (got $0.75 back per yogurt — Ibotta rebate)
  • 2 bags of apples — marked down to $0.99 each
  • 12 ears of corn — 4 for $0.99 each
  • 1 organic cauliflower — $0.99 each
  • Total with tax: $28.47

We had our Community Group (four other families) over for an Ice Cream Social. We provided bowls, cups, napkins, and spoons and chocolate syrup and cookies. Two families brought toppings and two families brought ice cream and we had a great get-together that was super simple and inexpensive for everyone!

Silas made some Homemade Oobleck last night and the kids had so much fun playing with it. This would be a great frugal fun activity for summer.

This morning, Silas and I made Homemade Pizza Dough on Facebook Live. I had planned to make a double batch and freeze half of it, but I realized that we were getting down the bottom of the flour jar. So we just made one pizza crust.

This boy loves helping me in the kitchen — and he just better and better at cooking and baking!

I hadn’t made dough on our new kitchen table until today. I wasn’t sure how it would clean up, but I’m so happy to say that it wiped right off. I continue be so happy that we chose this table for our kitchen. I just love how sturdy it is and how easily it cleans up!

Silas helped me knead the dough and I taught him what dough should feel like when it’s ready.

We couldn’t find our pizza pan and I’m guessing that somehow it disappeared in the move or that Kaitlynn may have confiscated it for some craft project and I just haven’t discovered it yet (she’s always making all sorts of crafts and projects and I try to encourage it as much as possible, thought I do sometimes have to tell her that my kitchen pans aren’t up for grabs — especially if they are going to get destroyed in the process of her experimentation! ;))

Silas made the pizza entirely by himself — from rolling out the dough, to putting on the sauce, to thawing the chicken from the freezer, to grating the cheese, to pre-heating the oven.

I only had to give a tiny bit of coaching! I am so excited with just how capable my kids are becoming and how much all those years of letting them help me in the kitchen had paid off!

Silas’ finished pizza! This will be our dinner tonight. Yum!

You can watch us make the Pizza Dough live in the video above.

This Week’s Super Simple Menu Plan

This menu is subject to change a little if I find some great deals or markdowns! 🙂


Cereal, Baked Oatmeal, Eggs, Fruit, Toast


Ham & Cheese Sandwiches, Chips, Fruit, Veggies, Capri Sun, Cream Cheese Blueberry Muffins, (for the kids) Leftovers, Eggs, Yogurt, Pita Pocket Sandwiches, Salad (for me & Jesse)


Whatever I Find on Sale/Marked Down (That works for snacks!), Ice Cream (our friends left the rest of the ice cream at our house from the ice cream social!), Yogurt, Cereal, Fruit, Popcorn


Monday — Homemade Chicken Salsa Pizza, Apples
Tuesday — Spaghetti Casserole, Peas, Naan
Wednesday — Meatballs, Corn on the Cob, Homemade French Fries
Thursday — Haystacks
Friday — Picnic at Kathrynne’s School — we’re supposed to bring enough of a side dish to feed 15 people — I’m thinking of doing Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes since those always seem popular at potluck style dinners and I have all those potatoes that I got marked down. I may change my mind depending upon what markdowns I find.
Saturday — Takeout Pizza (we’re having friends over for dinner but we’re going to be gone all day long so I’m keeping it crazy simple!)
Sunday — Snack-y Dinner (fend for yourself — cereal, leftovers, etc.)

Total spent so far this week: $28.47

Total left to spend: $41.53

Rebates: $1.50 Ibotta rebate for buying the 2 Fage yogurts, $0.25 Ibotta rebate for submitting my receipt

Free Kids Workshop at Home Depot on June 2, 2018

Home Depot is hosting another free Kids Workshop on Saturday, June 2, 2018, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.. This month’s project is to construct a vintage General Motors-style wooden car.

Here are the details:

  • Share the nostalgic pastime of car modeling with your child in this classic car hands-on workshop. Together you can build a vintage General Motors-style wooden car to put on display or take for a ride “with no particular place to go. Once your vehicle is built, your child can customize it with paint and stickers.
  • All kids get to keep their craft, receive a FREE certificate of achievement, a Workshop Apron, and a commemorative pin while supplies last.
  • Children must be present at the store to participate in the workshop and receive the kit, apron and pin.

Register for this free workshop at your local Home Depot store here.