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WIS, WWA| Name-brand crackers are better. The end.

What I Spent

Incidentally, on Instagram and Facebook this week, we chatted about off-brand crackers.

saltine crackers

My thought is that there are almost no good generic crackers, and most of you felt the same way as me. Some things are worth paying more for.

I spent $134 at the grocery store this week, so, yay me!

And it was an off-week for my Hungry Harvest box, so no charge there.

October Spending

Week 1: $260 (!)

Week 2: $148

Week 3: $130

Week 4: $134

This is the last report for October, because next Friday is November 1st.

So, here are the year-to-date spending totals.

Year to Date Grocery Spending

It’s week #43 of 2019, and I’m averaging $149/week thus far.

January: $619

February: $485

March: $702

April: $791

May: $806

June: $598

July: $695

August: $558

September: $484

October: $672

What We Ate


Mr. FG and I went out for a date night at the restaurant where Lisey works. Sonia and Zoe had soup and sandwiches at home.


We tried one of Aldi’s take and bake refrigerated pizzas, since we’d heard good reviews about them.

Verdict: pretty good flavor, but a really thin crust, which gets crispy in the oven. Definitely not what you want if you love a thick crust.


Mr. FG and I went out to dinner with some friends, and the girls ate mac and cheese at home.


I made a pot of clam chowder (I updated the post with a printable recipe card this week!)

homemade clam chowder recipe

We had that with English muffins and fruit salad.


I made apricot/orange glazed chicken, plus roasted fingerling potatoes.

orange glazed chicken


I was going to cook some green beans but I forgot until the last minute, at which point I cut up some grapefruit and called it good.


I made a pot of pasta alfredo along with a pan of sauteed green beans.

sauteed green beans

I use this recipe for alfredo sauce, but I use less garlic, and I up the sauce/pasta ratio.



Sonia and Zoe are with a friend tonight, so I think maybe Mr. FG and I will do our date night tonight and a family night tomorrow night. 🙂

What did you have for dinner this week?

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Sunday 27th of October 2019

Ha -- I have to agree -- name brand stuff is sometimes just better and crackers are in that category, although I can still be seduced by a very low price. See below, though, our favorite store brand spaghetti sauce (VONs signature select) which is lowish sugar and tastes great, especially with doctoring of veggies, wine, extra garlic, meat, etc, and is cheap and cheaper (on sale or with points). Better than the big names, we think!

Not our finest week . . .

Sunday -- Used last box of pasta with the turkey bolognese sauce using our favorite discounted store brand sauce and a Sprout's chicken sausage for oomph.

Monday -- Shrimp tacos from an okay recipe -- meh. Husband liked them. . Tuesday -- Last of the turkey spaghetti (outlined in painful detail above), green salad

Wednesday--Scrounged meal from freezer/pantry. Husband was angling for take out but I persevered with tacos: Very discounted organic frozen chicken pieces; refried beans, leftover tortillas from Monday; hot sauce. Side of red bell pepper slices, cherry tomatoes, and black olives --- the only veggies to be had. Pretty tasty!

Thursday--Did scads of food shopping, got home late and made weird veggie tacos from a magazine. Classic FAIL: recipe required Mexican crema and special cheese which I am sure I overpaid for at Sprouts. Grrrrr. And they weren't even wonderful -- just kind of bland and creamy but not in a good way. And the recipe made a lot. I mean, a LOT of leftovers. Sighing

Friday--Takeout of favorite not too expensive Mexican food.

Saturday -- Another FAIL -- husband's event necessitated our being there early and we got a pizza and salad nearby. Not too expensive but still . . .I did suggest the bland veggie taco leftovers, to which husband blanched and made a horrible face.

Tonight, Sunday, well, too bad -- it's the weirdly creamy and sort of bland veggie tacos for the win. Planning ways to wake it up -- salsa, hot sauce, chopped tomatoes, all of the above?? At least it will use up some tortillas.

Cheers and happy week to all!

Mary in VA

Sunday 27th of October 2019

Dollar Tree saltines are definitely inferior. But I don't dislike them enough to pay extra for a name brand.


Saturday 26th of October 2019

I like Aldi saltines. I'm a peanut butter snob (Jif!) and a ketchup snob (Heinz!) Crackers? Not so much. And while I will concede that there are some differences between brand names and generics, most brand name companies also make generics. Fun fact: every store brand of marshmallows is made by the same company. (I know this because we took a factory tour and they proudly display the bags on a huge bulletin board.) Btw, I'm talking regular marshmallows not gourmet types.

One Frugal Girl

Saturday 26th of October 2019

I never thought about the brand name cracker issue but you are right. They tend to be much crisper for some reason. They have that special snap you want in a cracker.

Karen L

Saturday 26th of October 2019

Trader Joe's water crackers are the best. We like them a lot better than Carr's and they are much cheaper.

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