Hmph! I think I need to be more realistic on what it costs to feed us for a week. It wasn't too bad, but I still need to buy pop and water (I didn't buy pop at $7.48 at Walmart as I see Safeway has it for $5.49 this week, along with case of water at $2.77), and I know I will need a couple more gallons of milk midweek. I spent $119 on food and $35 on non food (dog food, drano, and school supplies). I did use $5.25 in coupons this week.
I guess I need to realize it will be a little higher since we are not doing fast food/take out as often...so my expense is going down in that area. I had an idea that I think is starting to help bring the food budget down. When we were eating fast food at least 3 times a week, I would only meal plan for 4-5 meals...so it was a guarantee that we would have to go get fast food, since I didn't have a meal planned or anything purchased on hand to make a meal at home. Now I am planning for 7, even 8, dinner meals for the week. That way, if we get down to the end of the week and the last thing on the menu doesn't sound too good, we have another choice. And it's helped - the last 2 weeks we've only gotten fast food 1 time each week.
I don't plan breakfast and lunch meals. Since the kids are in school and I'm at work 3 days a week, there isn't much point in it. We all kinda do our own thing for those meals and I just try to keep on hand what we always eat. Dh pretty much has had the same breakfast and lunch for years. For breakfast I make him an "egg sandwich", for lunch he usually has lunch meat and cheese on 7 grain bread and some chips. Ds is lucky to eat breakfast - since sometimes he doesn't even get up until almost lunch time (he goes to school at night and stays up late). Since he was about 3 yrs old he's pretty much lived on PB&J sandwiches. Dd has cereal, toast, or instant breakfast drink for breakfast, and lately she's been buying lunch at school (usually a bagel and cream cheese). I really don't like a big breakfast first thing in the morning, so since my teenage years I pretty much always have instant breakfast drink. Lunch is leftovers or soup at hand.
I know some of our dinner meals could be made cheaper if I made from scratch, but with working full time (and the fact that I really don't like to cook) it's hard to get up the iniative to cook.