If you have ever gone into the grocery store on the 1st of the month, you have experienced food stamp craze. This phenomena happens because many people spend all their allotted food stamps long before the end of the month, so when the new allotment comes out on the 1st, they all run to the store to buy food and eat. You can avoid this mad rush if you are wise and careful throughout the month.
Devise a Budget
You know how much you receive for your food stamp benefit. You can either divide that amount by the number of days in the month or by four since there are four weeks in the month, with a few extra days. If your benefits are not enough for your groceries each month, you will need to add to your budget, but do not make the mistake of using your stamps or card for the first few weeks and relying on your income for the last couple of weeks. You will end up not having enough food the last few days or week and be caught up in the stamp craze.
Plan Your Meals
Once you know how much you can spend each week, write up a menu for each day. Be sure to include snacks and drinks. You are aiming for good, healthy meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Once you know what you are going to eat, make up a list of the items needed to make those foods. Go through the refrigerator and cupboards to see if you already have any items on the list. You do not want to have duplicate items that can go bad. It is also a good idea to leave a little extra available for something you might have forgotten, but know how much that extra is.
Often, this is where you will blow your budget. You go to the store with every intention of sticking to your budget and see all kinds of other things that you think you need. Stop and think for a moment though, you have a list of everything you need to feed your family for the week. You have included snacks. Anything you buy that is not on your list is extra and not really needed. If it is something you honestly forgot, use the little extra you saved, but do not go over that amount. If it is something you or someone really likes, either swap something on your list or tell yourself you will get it next week. There is no need to have everything everyone could possibly want I the house at all times.