How do u shop for food?? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 01:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Do you buy grocery every week, every two weeks, or shopfor the month? I was raised and thought that you shop for grocery for the month and when your out your out until the next monthly trip to the store.

I find that by shopping this way we run out of fresh fruit and vegatables in the middle of the month. My DS prefers the fresh over the frozen so during the last 2 weeks of the month my DS does not get fruit.

So I just want to know how other family shop. Do you go to more than one store?? I go to 2 different stores on grocery shopping day (I make a list for both stores). Do you plan the month of meals including lunch and then go shopping?

Please post your routine because we are ISO a new method

SAHM to DS(11), DD(9), DD(7), DD(5), angel.gif loss(28wks 12/31/10), and DD (2); wife to DH since 1998
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#2 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 01:56 AM
 
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My sister and I were talking about this today. I would need to go weekly for fresh fruits/veggies/milk. I am trying to figure out a good cost-effective system...

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#3 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 02:52 AM
 
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[QUOTE=Nu_Mommy_2003]Do you buy grocery every week, every two weeks, or shopfor the month? I was raised and thought that you shop for grocery for the month and when your out your out until the next monthly trip to the store.

I find that by shopping this way we run out of fresh fruit and vegatables in the middle of the month. My DS prefers the fresh over the frozen so during the last 2 weeks of the month my DS does not get fruit. "



I can't imagine going grocery shopping only once a month. It seems like I'm always out of something, and fruit goes FAST in this house, which is only me & DS and he is the one eating it all :LOL If he was only able to eat fresh fruit 50% of the time instead of all the time he would not be a happy camper.



"So I just want to know how other family shop. Do you go to more than one store?? I go to 2 different stores on grocery shopping day (I make a list for both stores). Do you plan the month of meals including lunch and then go shopping?

Please post your routine because we are ISO a new method "




One or two big trips per month with as many other trips to the store as needed. There's no way I'd be able to plan a whole month's worth of meals. We eat what we're "in the mood for" and I don't know what I'll want to eat for breakfast tommorow let alone breakfast three weeks from now. I do go to more than one store. There's one co op and a bigger grocery store that I do most of the shopping at, then there's the smaller fruit/vegetable store down the street that I go to once in a while. I'm trying to go to the farmer's markets more often because it's less expensive than the co op prices ( I try to buy as much organic as I can). AND on top of all that I make alot of trips out of town to another co op because they have certain things that the one in town doesn't.

As you can see I have no method other than if there's something I want or need, I get it. :LOL It would probably be different if I had to drive a long ways to get to a store though...
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#4 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 03:55 AM
 
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DH takes our only car to work, and there is a Trader Joe's AND a Whole Foods nearby his work. These tend to be the only stores we shop at until recently (we've discovered a small organic farm just 5 minutes from our house). DH goes to the grocery store 2-3X a week after work to get a few needed things here and there, mostly fresh stuff because we go through it quickly (salad greens and veggies and fruit and milk and cheese and meat).

On the weekends we go to the organic farm for fresh veggies as well - much cheaper.

Once baby is born and DH starts taking the bus to work when I need the car, I imagine that our grocery trips will be fewer and farther between - once a week perhaps. We'd never make it longer, because we need the fresh!
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#5 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 10:52 AM
 
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We go once a week to one or two stores, plus trips to the farmer's market and Costco probably twice a month. DH eats a lot of fruit; I'm not so good : . Plus, I scour the ads for the good prices, so I try to take advantage of that.

Oh, on top of that we are in a buying club and we get an order from them every 8 weeks.

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#6 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 11:00 AM
 
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I have a lot of stock up stuff- canned tomatoes, tuna, grains, flours--things like that. However, I shop several times a week at various places. Mostly because i enjoy cooking and choosing food, and I like fresh produce. I go to one place for bread, another for cheeses, oils, mushrooms, vinegars etc. . A farm for eggs. The market for others things. Another place for fresh fish. A farmstand starting next week (when their own produce starts to be put out). Next month I pick up some local beef (raised right in my town) cut to my specifications. We bought a 4th of the meat of a pasture raised, organic cow. I live in a pretty central area, so it's not hard to shop this way.

I have a little garden with tomatoes, lettuces, herbs, squashes, cucs, beans etc., but it's not producing yet. (Well, hebs and lettuce, but that's pretty much all yet).
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#7 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 01:01 PM
 
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I shop every Saturday morning at Whole Foods for our main shopping trip. Once or twice during the week I will go to Super Target or Kroger (both closer than WF) to stock up on more fruits & veggies. We eat a LOT of both around here, so I couldn't shop for those just once a month. To give you an idea of how much we go through on a daily basis, I paid attention to what got eaten yesterday: 8 bananas (maybe more, but I counted at least 8), 4 pears, 2 apples, 3 mangoes, 1/2 pound of cherries, 1/2 of a watermelon, 1 head romaine, 2 heads broccoli, 1 pint of mushrooms, 3 peaches. Now, the kids might have eaten other produce that I didn't notice, so it might not be a complete list. No way could I buy enough at once to last for a month!

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#8 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 01:07 PM
 
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I do one big one a month and do several small trips to get milk vegestbles and fruit
i go to a chines market, wf, wallytown target krogers and i check on sells too oh do not forget costco,big lots too for snaks.
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#9 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 01:07 PM
 
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I forgot to answer part of the original question. I do have a dinner menu made up before I shop. I never have a lunch menu though I think I need to change that. The kids seem to be in better moods when I have something planned, or at least some kind of idea, for lunch rather than just letting them get their own. The older kids get their own, not the younger ones! They don't really like leftovers, but sometimes I have to make them eat the leftovers so we don't waste food. I need to get more organized about lunch! Breakfast is really every person for himself. Today I made pancakes, but usually dh, Alec, and I have fruit or oatmeal or miso soup, something simple. The girls get their own breakfasts; I think one usually has fruit and toast and the other has cereal and fruit.

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#10 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 01:09 PM
 
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My routine is pretty similar to yours with the exception that I shop weekly for perishables. I have to travel an hour to get to the Whole Foods store, so I make one monthly trip to stock up on all the staples. Then I fill in with weekly trips to our local grocery store for produce and dairy. Unless it's summer, in which case I do almost all of my perishables shopping at the farmer's market. This way, I have everything I regularly use on hand but I also have the variety based on what is available at the markets.
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#11 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 01:13 PM
 
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We go once a week, and even then we have to make an extra trip in the middle of the week for more fruits & milk. I have no idea how you make fruit last till the middle of the month even!

Single mom of 2 boys
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#12 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 04:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks all! Maybe I'll divide up the monthly grocery money into 2 trips. Grocery shopping every week seems stressful. I lugging two kids around the store every week even with a list every week, I'll still have DS throw thing in the basket

As for how the fruit last for 2 weeks. I don't buy all ripe fruit. I pick some ripe and some green bananas for example. Also, I freeze some of the fruit. DS doesn't like package frozen veggies or fruit that's in the grocer freezer. He prefers fresh frozen fruit (he likes using the food saver :LOL)

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#13 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 04:49 PM
 
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I go once a week to get fresh milk, bread, and produce. Things that will keep (oats, pasta, etc.) generally get bought once a month. So I guess I have one "big" shopping trip a month, with three smaller ones. That's also good if I run out of something, I can just buy it on a "small" trip.
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#14 of 36 Old 06-28-2005, 04:53 PM
 
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If you think about it, frequent short trips might be easier on kids, and sometimes fun for them. : Ok, maybe not for some kids, but it takes me about 10 minutes (or less) to get fish, for instance. It's a small shop and the people who work there friendly & quick. My kids amuse themselves watching the lobsters in a huge tank. (I know this is not sport for vegetarin children).

When we get produce at the farm stand, I pull up, take my keys and open my doors so the kids and I can see each other. Or, they get out and choose whatever piece of fruit they want for the ride home. Painless and also pretty quick and can be fun to choose from all the nice fruit. The store I get oils breads from has only about a meal's worth of free samples and fresh juice to occupy the children, so they eat while I pick things out. Even when I go to the regular market, it's not for a months' worth of items, so it's quick and they can weigh fruit etc. Not too bad, and i always let them choose something they want and we agree on.

My kids mostly enjoy these errands, and the chance to pick things out, smell herbs and ripe fruit etc.

Of course, I have the patience for this since I am a foodie. I get a lot of pleasure introducing my kids to various items from different parts of the world. I know that shopping and preparing food with children in tow can be a terrible chore at times, and I am not advocating dragging tired, bored children around. I don't mean that at all.
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#15 of 36 Old 07-05-2005, 03:44 PM
 
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I go about once a month. I plan all my meals for a month at at time. I eat raw from breakfast and lunch. Supper is usually cooked.

I can usually keep fresh veges and fruit for 2 weeks. I have had some least a month, but not always. I go to one grocery store. If they do not have everything then I will try the other one.

When I need fresh veges I get my mom or dh to pick them up for me. Now that the Farmer's market is here I try to hit that on the weekends for fresh vegs. My mom goes most times and she gets me what i need.

Going food shopping once a month (and the cooking) sure helps me. I have time to do other things I want instead of shopping. (plus up until a month ago I did not have a car and I had to have my mom come and take me and my 3 kids shopping!) I have a food budget of only $80-$100 a month.
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#16 of 36 Old 07-05-2005, 03:53 PM
 
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Weekly for fresh fruits/veggies and milk, b/c the produce in our grocery stores are so diappointing. Now, with it being summer, I've been able to find some veg/fruit market type places, but they are kind of out of the way. With non-perishables, I typically stock up when they are on sale, otherwise I avoid buying them if possible. A few months ago we got a stand up freezer for the basement and it has been a great investment, we can buy more frozen foods in bulk and I also buy bread in bulk and freeze it, etc..
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#17 of 36 Old 07-05-2005, 04:06 PM
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Dh gets paid twice a month. On those paydays I shop for two weeks worth of staples like apple sauces, beans, breads, meat and so on. The things that either store well or freeze well. Then I buy fruit/vegies for a week. I try to meal plan so that when I do the main shopping I have all the staples for our meals over the next two weeks and then I just pick up the fresh when I need to. We eat tons of fruit and vegies every week...6lbs of apples, 6lbs of oranges, 8lbs bananas, 3lbs of kiwi, 6lbs pears, plus all the vegies. It would be impossible to buy even 2 weeks worth of produce at once. I have a budget and I make sure to keep $60 for the mid payperiod fruit/vegie shopping spree.
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#18 of 36 Old 07-08-2005, 09:23 PM
 
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We go weekly. Usually a weekday night. I read the flyers and make a list. When we get there DH takes our two kids and wander around while I put things in the cart. Usually we're done in 20 minutes. Because it's weekday night the store's quite empty, so I can move pretty fast. We also joined an organic CSA and get our veggies that way. We probably go to Costco once a month and a Chinese store occasionally. I guess everybody is used to their own ways. I always go shopping with DH so I never even think how other women manage to shop while lugging a couple kids around.

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#19 of 36 Old 07-09-2005, 02:33 AM
 
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I shop once a week during the day when it's not busy. My dd who is almost 3 sits in the back of the cart and 'helps' me by putting everything in. :LOL The past month I have started making a weekly menu of dinners and then I make a grocery list from that. I add on lunch stuff and snacks and I get a flyer from my fave store so I check for sales as I make my list. They have great prices on produce and normally I just wing it for fruits and veggies to snack on. If nonperishables are on sale I'll stock up but I don't have a special trip for that. I just go once a week and get what I need. The grocery store that I go to is not a big chain and they tend to serve a lot of cultures so I think that tends to keep some prices low. I can't go into Jewel and Dominicks and spend 80 dollars when I know I can go to Caputo's and only spend 50!
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#20 of 36 Old 07-11-2005, 05:57 AM
 
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I go every 2 wks but do run out of stuff. I'm thinking of shopping on line tho so I don't have to haul the kids to the store...
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#21 of 36 Old 07-13-2005, 04:25 PM
 
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One person mentioned it, but do any of you other ladies shop online? If so, where?

We go shopping weekly, and always, always w/dh along to help w/the kids. Sometimes they will go to a fast food place w/a playground and have a small snack (I know, I know--ick), while I shop at the Walmart on the other side of the parking lot. We live in a very small town, and there are only 2 stores. And the little one just cannot compete w/WM prices. My dh works 15 min. from WF (I MISS that store!!!-we use to live in that town), so if I need something from there, he picks it up on his lunch for me. I also have a neighbor who works in a town 40 min. from here and she frequents the HFS, so sometimes she'll call and ask me what I need.

I try to keep a good stockpile of staples such as rolled oats, ww flour, soy flour, yeast, nuts, brown rice, ww pasta, spices, etc....We have a HUGE (3,000 sq.ft) garden, so we are harvesting about 40 zucc./day, 60 toms/day, etc...Plus bell peppers, green beans, watermelons, cukes, lots of fresh herbs,kale, etc...I am freezing/canning as much as I possibly can for the winter. Plus we go to my mom's to pick blackberries and sandplums for jams and freezer stashes. I cook what I"m in the mood to cook.

I feed my family of 5 plus my MIL, and sometimes my neighbors and dh's coworkers, just 'cause I love to cook, lol. I still manage to spend WAY too much at WM, though. Usually $150-200. I really need to figure out how that keeps happening, lol.

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#22 of 36 Old 07-14-2005, 09:01 AM
 
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I go to the grocery every day. I like to buy fresh (I know, the apples were there yesterday, but I like eating them the day I buy them) and we go through milk like you wouldn't believe. For two adults, we drink prolly 4 or 5 gallons of milk a week. That means we're always 'almost out' of milk.

I usually do one or two big trips to a Whole Foods and/or Trader Joes each month b/c they're both about an hour away and DS just doesn't like the car seat. I try to stock up on as much as I'll need in case I don't get back for awhile. Then, there's a local market (it usually only has one or two choices for brands of everything, but they have the nicest produce) I go to daily. I get bread there too.

I also, in the summer, go to the local produce stands around. I like that I can ask them where the food has been, who picked it, when it was picked, etc.

I have a menu idea before I go to the store, or I end up buying more than we need. I also keep a good stock of canned goods, in case I don't make it for some reason. Then, when I use something out of the cupboard, I replace it right away so I'll have it for next time. If I do that, then I can always whip up something pretty decent, no matter the time of day or if I've gone to the store or not.
I figure it this way, if I'm careful, and only buy fresh stuff, the total each day isn't more than $10. That adds up to the same as one big shopping trip.

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#23 of 36 Old 07-14-2005, 09:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JaysMama
I shop once a week during the day when it's not busy. My dd who is almost 3 sits in the back of the cart and 'helps' me by putting everything in. :LOL The past month I have started making a weekly menu of dinners and then I make a grocery list from that. I add on lunch stuff and snacks and I get a flyer from my fave store so I check for sales as I make my list. They have great prices on produce and normally I just wing it for fruits and veggies to snack on. If nonperishables are on sale I'll stock up but I don't have a special trip for that. I just go once a week and get what I need. The grocery store that I go to is not a big chain and they tend to serve a lot of cultures so I think that tends to keep some prices low. I can't go into Jewel and Dominicks and spend 80 dollars when I know I can go to Caputo's and only spend 50!
Wow another chicagoeon! Are you shopping at Caputos?? I LOOOVVVVEEEE that place! We also hit Mr Z's in my neighborhood too. Its so much nicer to go into these smaller chains then those big box groceries that are now owned by larger chains and they took whatever midwest values out of them they could.
But, I also shop Trader Joes for speciality items, Whole Foods when I am in that area, Fruitful Yield, and if all else fails Jewel. But since they stopped carrying fresh lettuce and only bagged, my trips there are getting fewer and fewer.
I think you have also posted in food grwoing mamas

"The true joy of life is the trip. The station is only a dream. It constantly out distances us."
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#24 of 36 Old 07-15-2005, 12:42 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Amys1st
Wow another chicagoeon! Are you shopping at Caputos?? I LOOOVVVVEEEE that place! We also hit Mr Z's in my neighborhood too. Its so much nicer to go into these smaller chains then those big box groceries that are now owned by larger chains and they took whatever midwest values out of them they could.
But, I also shop Trader Joes for speciality items, Whole Foods when I am in that area, Fruitful Yield, and if all else fails Jewel. But since they stopped carrying fresh lettuce and only bagged, my trips there are getting fewer and fewer.
I think you have also posted in food grwoing mamas

Oh yeah! I love Caputos too! That's pretty much my main grocery store. I've been wanting to go to Mr. Z's and I just never seem to get there, their flyer has some great prices though. I know what you mean about the big chains taking out the midwest values. They don't need to charge such high prices they just know they can get away with it because people will always shop there. I have a Dominicks right by my house so if I'm out of something I'll run there and that's how they get ya! I love Wild Oats and I have a little Fuitful Yield by me too.
Yep, I'm at food growing mamas too! We are just starting to eat from our garden so that should cut down a little on the produce at the store.
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#25 of 36 Old 07-16-2005, 01:32 PM
 
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We don't own a car so we walk to our nearby Co-op at least once a week, but sometimes more. We actually spend very little on groceries this way. We pretty much can only buy what we can carry. I am very lucky because my DH is a chef and does very well with making delicious dishes on whatever we have left in our pantry and fridge. Also, we are in walking distance to the local fish monger.

I must note, that my DH works evenings and so the kids and I are often at our family's cabin on Lake Superior (had to throw that in! :LOL ) and we eat dinner with my IL's...so that's one less meal in which to plan.

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#26 of 36 Old 07-16-2005, 01:34 PM
 
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Oh, we pretty much only shop at our Organic/Natural food Co-op because we are members and we receive a discount and it's in walking distance.

There are three things I learned about life. It goes on. -Longfellow

 

stillheart.gifRIP DH DJ Delicious but mucho gracias for our children and all I have learnedstillheart.gif

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#27 of 36 Old 07-16-2005, 01:43 PM
 
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We have produce delivery once a week which keeps me out of the store for perishables. Since it's summer, I sometimes suspend that and get produce at the Farmer's Market. I go to the nearby grocery store 2-3 times a month for my WIC stuff (organic milk and cheese, mostly). Once a month, or less, I go to the grainery and get my bulk foods like pasta, oats, sugar, nut butters, flour, pancake mix, jarred and canned food. And then, every once in a while, I go to the Indian grocery for ghee and garbanzo flour and Indian pickle and basmati rice and spices.
When I'm at Larry's for WIC, I browse their sales. They often have Muir Glen tomato products and BioNaturae organic canned tomatoes, organic bread and organic maple syrup on sale. I stock up on things like organic bread and butter when they are on sale and keep them in my freezer.
Every once in a while, if I don't find good sales on my staples, I'll go to Trader Joe's.
I spend $150/month on produce, $100-$150 month on bulk (I don't buy a month's worth, I get whatever is on sale for a good price and stock up on that and then buy the other things I need next time I'm there) and then my WIC totals to around $100 of free stuff.
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#28 of 36 Old 07-21-2005, 10:25 PM
 
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Hi, I'm new here and was reading how everyone shops for food. Several responses sound like my routine as well.

We have 7 children, so food shopping is a production sometimes LOL I go shopping every 2 weeks on paydays, usually spend around $250-$300 on everything we need each trip. I shop the commissary (we're military) as that has the best prices.

I also buy things in bulk as much as I can...bread is one of the bulk items as I freeze it until needed. WIC we get too, so that takes care of a lot of my milk buying (among other items) for the month, but with 1 yr old twin boys, milk goes quickly for sure!

Then of course we have our weekly "quick" trips to the store for fresh fruits and veggies that disappear in this house like vapor LOL I'm very thankful though my kids eat healthy most of the time and love fruit and veggies.

I have friends who's kids wouldnt touch a veggie to save their lives LOL
Anyway, just thought I'd post on this thread since it did spark my interest and hopefully I'll get to know everyone better soon.
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#29 of 36 Old 07-30-2005, 02:29 AM
 
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Well, in my pre-baby, pre-MDC, pre-trying-to-be-more-NFL days, I went grocery shopping every 2 or 3 weeks after clipping all my coupons and matching them to various store ads. But that mostly resulted in a pantry full of processed boxed and canned foods.

Now, we try to keep big grocery store trips to a minimum. If I feel like I'm low on meat, eggs, or cheese, I'll drive over to the Amish community. I'm also in contact w/ a local organic farmer about purchasing either a 1/4 of a cow or 1/2 a hog. If we're running low on fruit and veggies that we don't grow ourselves, I'll go to one of the local orchards or vegetable patches--although I do have to supplement that w/ organic produce at the grocery store. And I'm making more and more of our toiletries and cleaners from scratch at home.

When we do make a big grocery trip, we try to stock up on things that are on sale and do without the things that aren't. The Kroger here has set up a nice natural/organic section, so I get a variety of organic produce, dairy products, cereals, sometimes eggs, a few snacks. While I'm there, I can also pick up some of our mainstream hold-outs like cat litter, Tide, and Doritos.

My mom lives in the Chicago suburbs, so we also do a Trader Joe's stock-up every couple months--fruit leathers, pizza dough (that we freeze), nut butters, jellies/jams, nuts, snacks.
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#30 of 36 Old 08-01-2005, 02:43 PM
 
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Ahhhhhh....I feel so good! I did a huge stock-up at a salvage store in another town (CHEAP organic pastas, bottled organic salad dressings and marinades, etc). Then, since we were only 20 minutes away, we hit Whole Foods and got fish, nut butters, bulk brown basmati rice, short grain brown rice for sushi, granola, cheeses,fruit leathers, and yummy stuff like that (and I was thrilled to find that they increased their wine section! Yay for mommy!). Then we hit a little grocery store where I bought every single package (8 total!) of Nori they had in stock. Wayyyyy cheaper than WF, and I can't even find it in my tiny town! Our garden is still producing more tomatoes and squashes than we can even think of eating now, so I am freezing shredded zucc. for muffins later on. We do the best we can at eating all those yummy toms now while they are here, and the rest I oven dry for later. We probably each eat (well the big kid and the parents, lol) 4 fresh toms per day, at least. We had a hog roast for July 3 and still have LOTS of pig in the freezer from that, and dh will be dressing out roosters for the freezer sometime this week, and my hens had better start laying or they are soup, too!. After all that, we should be pretty much set for at least a month, except for a few things like fresh fruit and milk for my MIL, who lives in a little handicapped accessible house 9 ft from mine, lol. She insists on a kind of milk I won't give my kids so I always have to run to the store for that. Oh, and we'll be going to pick apples in a couple of weeks, so there's our apple sauces and apple leather, and apple butter, etc... for the year, lol. We did peaches 2 wks ago and I made jams, leather, pureed and frozen peaches, and of course alllllllll the juicy ones we could eat before I processed them, lol. So we are officially set! I can make just about anything I want now. Oh, and we've had our splurge on yummy fish (yellowfin tuna, fresh rainbow trout, and gooooood salmon) so now we'll stick to the cheap talapia, lol. My dh sooo needs to find a place to go fishing!

Happy Homesteading Homeschooling Homebirthing Beekeeping Dready (& a bit redneck even) Mama to 4 fab kids :  dd (23), dd (13), ds (11), dd (5)

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