Rising Grocery Bills, Gas Prices and Kids Activity Fees: The Cost of Inflation

It’s inevitable at this time, unfortunately. Prices are rising as the days pass. An 18-count carton of eggs which used to cost $2.19 in August of 2021 is now a staggering $3.94 according to my purchase history. A gallon of milk is now tipping toward $4 for some store brand names.

The price of gas alone has deterred our family from taking the regular summer vacation. Not to mention the cost of the beach condo we stayed last year is now double. When you’re a budget lover like myself, looking at these numbers triggers a full-blown anxiety attack.

My husband will be the first to tell you that I’m cheap. BUT, I look at it as I have to work with a budget. We aren’t the upper cusp of the Lafayette elite. We are your typical middle class family. The kids go to public school since we are in a great district. My husband and I both work full time. The kids are involved in extra curricular activities. Bills, food, gas, activities … they all have to be able to fit into “the budget” or it won’t happen.

Case in point – we had to let one of our kids know they wouldn’t be able to do one of the activities they were involved with last year. It would be financially impossible. I am not one to put my family in financial ruins for something of that nature either. We explained we couldn’t afford it this year and that we would take another look next year. That had to be one of the toughest conversations we’ve ever had with the kids, but it was honest.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we are going to see the end of this any time soon. Second jobs are coming into play for some. Conversations about raises, working overtime and even looking for better paying jobs are happening everywhere.

I have complied a few ideas (that has helped our family) to help cut costs.

Since my oldest is in middle school now and rides the bus to and from school, we no longer have to pay for aftercare for her. My youngest is now able to ride the bus home, hang out at a neighbor’s house for a few minutes, then walk home with her sister once she gets off the bus. This is saving us about $200 a month.

Weekly Ads. I am a sales circular junkie. The app Flipp is amazing if you don’t know about it. I am able to save my regular stores to get their sales circular every week. I then can circle the items on sale and the app will make a list of each store and item I have selected.

Pinterest. I use this like crazy. Search up inexpensive meal ideas and you’ll get more than you know what to do with.

Side gigs. There are so many small or big side jobs working from home to help supplement income. The amount of positions available are unreal. If you are able to handle another small job, go for it. A lot of them give you the option of choosing your hours so you are able to work around your current job and the kids schedules.

I pray we don’t have to live through this tumultuous time for too much longer. But until this end, if you have any budget ideas I would love for you to share!

Patrice LaBauve
Patrice is a Baton Rouge native that moved to the area to attend UL Lafayette in 2002 and never looked back. Since graduating with a degree in Public Relations she has worked in the insurance business on both personal and commercial sides. Her love of her Cajun heritage made it an easy decision to marry her New Iberia born and raised husband, Matt. They now resides in Youngsville and have two daughters Jolie (9) and Amelie (5) and her bonus son, Eli (14). On most weekdays you will find her running the roads to the dance studio, soccer field or her favorite place, 220 Fitness. The weekends are her favorite family time and are usually spent cooking with her family, watching her daughter show off her goalie skills, checking out any festival around the area, and catching all Saints and Cajuns game. She and her husband are craft beer drinkers, but she also won’t turn down a good Pinot Noir or fancy cocktail. She loves a good philanthropic event, to-do lists, singing in front of people whenever she gets the chance, her gym family and live music. Lafayette has been the perfect place to raise her children and immerse them in the culture she loves.