DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS

DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS
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27 September 2007

Grocery shopping

Shopping! {shudder} I did my grocery shopping yesterday from the comfort of my own backyard. Let me explain - I wrote a shopping list, Hanno went shopping alone and I worked in the garden. Good eh? And now we're set for at least another month before we need to stock up again. I do pick up local milk and cream when I go to work each week, sometimes I also have to buy local fruit and vegetables, but the bulk of the groceries is taken care of for another month, at least. Phew.

I should add too that Hanno loves shopping to my list. He chooses exactly what is on the list when he's at Aldi and scans the bins for perfect fruit and vegetables. At the other supermarket, IGA (we refuse to shop at Woolworths and Coles), where we go to for items not at Aldi, he unit shops, which is the most frugal way to shop. Unit shopping is going beyond comparing the cost of different brands of the same product, it also takes into account the size or weight, as well as the price. When you unit shop, you break down the cost to the unit - be that gram, millilitre, ounce or pound, and buy the cheapest unit price. When he returns, yes there are a couple of things I didn't ask for, but very few, and the rest is exactly to the list.

Yesterday we stocked up on honey @ $2.99 per 500grams x 4 jars, red salmon 210 grams @ $3.49 x 4, tuna in spring water 425 grams @ $1.89 x 4 tins, sandwich tuna 185 grams @ 99 cents x 4 tins, tomatoes 1 kilo @ $1.99 x 2. granny smith apples 1 kilo @ $2.89, oranges 1 kilo @ 99 cents x 2, bananas $1.32, tasty cheese @ 1 kilo $5.49, cottage cheese 500 grams @ $2.49, butter 250 grams x 12 @ 99 cents $11.88, pasta @ 49 cents x 4, strawberries 500 grams @ 99 cents x 2, plus a number of other things. At Simply Good, our bulk food store we spent $31 on 12.5 kg of baker's flour, Iranian dates, Californian walnuts, 1 kg mixed dried fruit, 200 grams glace cherries and some yeast. We spent $16 on pet meat - we make our own dog food here using this $16 we will be able to make enough food for our two dogs for a month. Hanno also bought some meat for his last kale meal of the season - he loves smoked pork sausage and kassler with our fresh kale. That meal will last him 5 or 6 days, I eat salads and eggs when he enjoys his German feast. All up we spent $195 on food that has topped up our stockpile and will keep us eating well for at least the next month.

We could live on our stockpile for a few months if we had to. Stockpiling groceries is the best way to provide your food needs. You'll shop the specials and store those items in your stockpile cupboard, so over time you'll create your own little supermarket that you can shop at any time of the day or night without leaving your home. And when you've been shopping this way for a while, all your groceries will be at the best prices, and less than the normal retail price. You will also save time because instead of shopping weekly, or every couple of days, you go once a month, with quick trip in to the local shop to pick up your milk. If you have a productive vegetable garden and chickens, you'll be eating fresh organic food, complemented with what's in your stockpile cupboard and pantry. It's the best of both worlds - organic food served with freshly baked bread, rice, pasta, fish etc from your pantry, stockpile and freezer. Stockpiling is worth the effort, and if you have a husband who likes to shop carefully, you can do it all while planting celery and beetroot. ; )

14 comments:

  1. I shop like this all the time. Single mother of four boys with large appetites, you get the picture! When I renovated I put in a full-sixed fridge/freezer pair, and the largest panrty that I could.
    I go to Aldi every 3 months, and in between I 'top up' with things we need. I used to spend $180-$240 a week on groceries... now I spend $120. That's for 5 people, 1 dog, 2 cats and 2 budgies.
    By the way, I've started my own veie garden. It's in its second year. I enjoyed seeing the photos of what you've been doing.

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  2. I used to do this too, but got in the habit of going more often. We were overseas for just over two years, and it was "fun" to go the supermarkets here again for a while! Now the "novelty" has worn off and I am trying to stockpile again and go to the shop less. I've started this week to just live out of the pantry :)

    Just wondering, why do you refuse to go to Woolies & Coles?

    Thanks for sharing - this really encourages me to keep trying to go back to the way I used to do things!

    Love,

    Joy

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  3. Thank you for sharing your grocery budget and how you go just once a month:) I was wondering how often you up-date your budget:) We have never written up a budget could you give me a few pointers.

    Renee

    From Kentucky

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  4. Good luck with your garden, Lisa.

    Joy, I believe they're squeezing the primary producers and, between them, creating a monopoly. I pay a bit more at IGA, but I pay less at Aldi, so I reckon I'm still getting a good deal but supporting local people by shopping at a supermaket owned by locals. : )

    Hello Renee dear, I've written a series of posts about budgeting you can see step one here: https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=5089828552519076506&postID=3759175694870913661 (It's in May) It continues through right after that post up to step five. I think writing a budget will help you a lot. I resisted it for a long time too but wish now I'd had one much earlier. Send me an email if you need help after reading the posts.

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  5. I enjoy grocery shopping, but don't always have the time to do it well! I've got my bulk style shopping down to fortnightly, unless i see something really good on special that I can stockpile. I too still have to buy milk and fruit & veg every week.

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  6. It is so interesting reading your blog Rhonda - I stop by often :) I find it fascinating that a lot of the things you write about (like unit shopping or washing tips) are the things that my mum taught us, but we didn't know there was a name to the processes, it was just our family's way. You explain things so clearly, in a way that makes it possible for other people to see that it isn't difficult to make small changes. Thanks for your writing :)

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  7. We are a family of 6, I shop once each month, with just bread, milk and fresh produce in between, I also try to support IGA and our local shops. We have a great range of local small businesses in our little town, and a really good bulk/health food shop in our nearest big town. My stockpile isn't nearly as big or as organised as Rhonda's but we are getting there.

    cheers Lenny

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  8. I love stockpiling! Rhonda I think you've turned me into an addict.LOL
    I have a double pantry(almost full now) in my laundry which I use for my stockpile which my son laughingly refers to as 'the shop' and a double pantry in my kitchen which I use for everyday cooking and baking.
    When my sister recently visited I mentioned that I spend about $150 a week on groceries(for 3 adults and 2 dogs),she couldn't believe it and asked me how. So I showed her my stockpile and menu plan and she was hooked. She said she shopped everyday for what they would eat that night and she spent over $200p/w for 1 teen, 1 adult, 2 dogs and 1 cat!
    I would love to reduce my spend even more and hopefully when my veg garden is up and running I can.
    Thanks Rhonda for your encouragement and inspiration.

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  9. RJ, any hints on husband training? Mine would go a pasty shade of grey if asked to perform such a task. He'll happily chop firewood, extend the house, vacuum the floors, change the baby etc....but as for shopping..he would not, could not in a plane, he would not could not on a train.....he cannot shop Mrs Rhonda J...he cannot shop, never, no way!

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  10. haha! a Dr Seuss fan. : ) I am blessed to be married to my husband. There is only one thing he won't do: ironing. Sorry, Lisa, I have no idea how to train a husband to shop. I think they either love it or hate it.

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  11. Ah, ok, fair enough :) I like to support the small local supermarkets as well, even if it is a bit more expensive. Like buying Australian.
    Love,
    Joy

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  12. I think my problem is that I love shopping too much and I'm trying really hard to stop that. I do have a stockpile of canned goods and flours etc so that isn't the problem. I just get taken in with the "bad for you" things that are at the supermarket.
    I think a good clean out and fresh start is in order. I know there must be expired things in my freezer and pantry.
    This will be my October goal.

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  13. I try to stockpile too, according to the best deals at the moment!

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  14. Lisa perhaps you could try a shopping strike? Surely he would get hungry and break eventually. It's that or a reasoned argument about the division of labour, which works pretty well here.

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