As I'm new to the personal financial blogging world, I figured it would benefit me to read the "back issues" of other popular bloggers. It may help my writing, but more importantly I might learn some new ways to save or make money. It seems one of the top and most mentioned is Madame X from My Open Wallet.
One post that I recently came across is her $800 a month food bill. She's from New York, so things are definitely more expensive, but I'm shocked at a $25+ a day food bill. I've never done a full analysis of all my eating expenses, but I think it's time to a little comparison.
One thing that I noticed is that Madame X pays $13-14 a pound for cuts of meat. In contrast, I "splurged" on an Angus Top Sirloin at the local Shaw's for $2.99 a pound. (In fact, I'm going to have that tonight). Usually my meat bill tops out at $1.99 a pound because I buy what ever is on special and freeze it. Also of note is the $75 wine bill which at my local Trader Joe's could buy 25 bottles. I'm so frugal that I've never bought anything at Whole Foods in my life. I tend to go out to eat only about 3-4 four times a month - my fiancee and I have gift certificates from Christmas that we haven't used yet.
Now we all have things that we splurge on. For me it's a plasma TV and the latest cool cell phone. For Madame X, perhaps it's food. And she has it a lot tougher living in NYC - carrying all her food back, limited place to store it (seems like she might not have a big freezer), limited access to the grocery stores I have in the suburbs (something I fear I'll run into in San Francisco. I'm just happy that it seems like I'm doing well in this one area of saving.
Next: Maxing out my 401K in a whole new way…