Typically I love to go grocery shopping. Between the food and shopping for the deals, I always find something to entertain myself with. My first job was actually at a grocery store, too.
But at the same time, grocery shopping can be a chore. Or feel a little postal. But, since I can’t get the kids to stop eating, I have to keep shopping.
Over the last few months, I’ve found that it is simpler to frequent a handful of stores rather than doing the 8 to 10 stops that I used to do in my heavier couponing days. The sales are just not that great in my area; I haven’t bought the paper for coupons in months. since we’re moving away from a lot of processed foods and being a little more particular about hormones and GMO’s, I’m also finding that my field of options is narrowing.
My solution has been to isolate the stores where I know I can get the items that I typically want at a fair price. This doesn’t stop me from looking at the circulars each week. But, I know that when there isn’t a great loss leader sale, I can fall back on these stores for the basics to get us through.
Costco is my go-to spot for milk, some cheeses, some fruits and vegetables, dried beans, oils, vinegars, and breads.
Trader Joe’s, with its pledge not to sell items with GMO’s, is proving to be a good place to buy a lot of my staples. Most of their dairy is also hormone-free, meaning I can relax a little about reading every single label.
Walmart has great deals on condiments, dairy, canned goods, and cleaners.
Keep a list.
I’ve found that if I keep lists of the same things that I buy each week or two at these stocking up spots, I prevent myself from reinventing the wheel. Instead, I can just print off a list and check off the things that we need to replenish in our stores.
You can download a copy of this planning page right here. One page has my regular stocking up items. One page is blank.
By keeping my grocery shopping to a minimum and keeping regular grocery stock up lists for each store, I’m better able to make use of my time as well as my money.