Saturday, September 21, 2013

And $360 later...

Nope, no new bookshelf or decorative piece to show off...although I do have some of that for later. Just groceries.

Yep, that's it folks.
Every few months, all the "stars" align and we need diapers, garbage bags, and other big cost items all at once. You know the ones, right; Olive oil, toilet paper, or maybe more than one recipe calls for nuts and you didn't notice until you were on that aisle?

Our normal weekly grocery shopping is more like $120 or something. It varies. We go to Aldi's a lot now that we have one close and it saves us a bundle, but when we need certain things we can't find there, we opt for HEB. This time it was Walmart--I HATE walmart--but we needed a whole lot and the kids wanted to bring their shopping money. That meant the opportunity to shop with only Bubzy in the cart since the older two would be on the toy aisles. We always spend more time and money than we plan when we go there.

It's actually been surprisingly long since we've had one of these BIG shopping trips and I think it's because of something I've been trying.

1. Whatever happens to be on the list, I go ahead and get extras of the pantry items that I use a lot. It's really great to look at my normal cookbooks and find a recipe that I seriously only need the meat and fresh produce. Score!! This has been happening a lot lately, since I've been grabbing extra cans, dry goods, pastas, favorite snacks, etc.

2. When I see a recipe I've never tried before, but I really want to, I put ONE pantry item on the list that I know I don't have or have never used. I keep with that one recipe until one day, whala, I have everything but the fresh stuff. Time to try it out!

3. I've been buying the fresh stuff for about 4 days worth of recipes, rather than all of them. I go ahead and plan two weeks of "menus", but I only get the pantry and freezable stuff for those recipes that I'm going to cook a little later. I wait on the fresh stuff for those meals and just list those items on a "get later" mini list. The mini list has stuff like fresh herbs that I'll need for next weeks roast or the bell peppers that I'm using for a recipe at the end of the week. Then, when I get to that time when I start needing the fresh stuff, Josh just picks up a few quick things from the store on his way home--usually the day before I'll need them. He usually gets the rest of the list at that time. It has saved many a veggy and herb from being wasted when it goes bad the day before I need it or the fresh rolls go moldy. This has saved us a bundle since we used to waste so much fresh produce!
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