Saturday, April 22, 2017

Friday: April Grocery Shopping Week 4

This morning, I was woken up by a phone call - it was my oldest half-brother, calling from Sri Lanka to check on me!  That was a nice surprise!  He's 16 years older than me, and my mother used to say that when I was a baby and I'd cry, he was about the only one who could get me to stop! 

Later in the morning, I took the car in for a service as the "maintenance required" light had come on.  They did the usual oil changes, tire rotations, etc. and said everything was fine.  It was good to hear that!  It was all covered under the extended warranty, so I didn't have to pay anything today. 

Afterwards, I did my grocery shopping.  I rarely make a meal plan and then go grocery shopping for the ingredients; I tend to do that only for special meals like the prayer gathering dinner or the almsgiving.  Usually, I just buy what appeals to me from what is on sale that week and then, plan meals based on what I bought and have on hand.   I went to the Armenian ethnic store, today, to get some fresh produce and milk because that's what I needed.  

As usual, I bought what I needed to round out what I have on hand, and I chose to buy that from what was on sale this week.  I needed some bananas (the two remaining bananas from the Week 3 grocery shopping trip have become a little too ripe for my liking) and at least one additional fruit for the week (still have 1 pear and several oranges in the fridge).  So, I chose to buy the apples that were selling for $.39/lb. this week, as opposed to other varieties of apples that weren't on special that were selling for $.89/lb.  I might go to a different store over the weekend for cat food and they are advertising a type of mangoes that I like for $.25 each, so I might buy some mangoes, as well.

I didn't need any meat (I have chicken, ground beef, fish, ground sausage, and shrimp in the freezer), yet, when I saw that the smoked sausages were on sale for $1.89 each, I bought a package!  Bacon was on sale for $2.89/lb. and I was tempted to buy some as I don't have any bacon on hand, but I  decided to wait on it, since I was getting the smoked sausage.  They had eggs on sale, too, for $.99/doz. and I put a carton into my cart and put it back, again, as I still have most of the dozen eggs I bought earlier. The prices are good through next Tuesday, so I might change my mind and go back for those, over the weekend! 

April 21 Grocery Shopping

I bought:

1 pkg. (12 oz.) smoked sausage = $1.89
1/2 gal.(1.89 L) milk = $1.99
1.3 lb bananas (4 bananas) @$.49/lb = $.64
2.08 lb. apples (3 large apples) @ $.39/lb = $.81
1 cucumber = $.20
.54 lb. tomato (2 tomatoes) @ $.69/lb = $.37
.52 lb green beans @ $1.39/lb = $.72
1 cabbage (1.4 lb) @$.20/lb. = $.28
1 bunch spinach = $.50
Total = $7.40

April 21 Receipt

Amount spent to date = $22.24 + $21.87 + $4.55+ $23.48 + $7.40 = $79.54
Balance left in the April grocery budget = $83.07 - $79.54 = $3.53

Cutting it close, this month, aren't I?  But that is OK.  I don't think I'll be needing much more, next weekend, other than more fresh produce.

I was tired after grocery shopping, so, after I finished my work for the day, I took a short nap!  I woke up when my gardener friend came over to do the garden.  We spent the next hour or so trying to put together a trellis I had in the garage - it was bought years ago and I never assembled it!  We couldn't finish putting it together as one piece was wrong (the item was bought too long ago to try and return it!)  I spent another hour or so, trying on my own, before I got too tired and gave up for the night!  I'll work on it more, tomorrow. 

Today, I am grateful for:
- Phone call from half-brother
- The car was serviced and didn't need any additional work done
- Afternoon naps
- Time spent in the garden
- Texts from cousin, emails and phone calls from friends.

How was your Friday?  How are you coming along with your April grocery budget?


  1. That was so sweet of your brother to call you. :) I am amazed how how low you have kept your April budget so far.

    My Friday was good. A dear friend came over for a visit and then my husband and I ran into town to buy some beautiful geranium plants that were on sale, stopped at the Dollar Tree store to pick up some needed items there and grabbed some dinner at Subway. I had him stop at one of the grocery stores on the way out of town because I wanted to treat us both to some ice cream. It was much cheaper to buy a half gallon there and bring it home to eat than to even buy a cone at Baskin Robbins. ;)

    1. Glad you had a good day, Debbie. Exactly my way of thinking when it comes to ice cream! So much cheaper to buy it at the grocery store.

  2. Your apples and mangoes are so much cheaper there than here even when I shop at Aldi's. I guess that's one of the advantages of living in a place with a mild climate year round. Have a great weekend, Bless.

    1. The produce prices at this particular store are especially good. Regular mangoes are on sale at most stores for $.50 each, this week and most places are selling apples for $.99/lb.

  3. My grocery shopping is like your way of shopping the specials and then planning my meals around what I have on hand. My stocking up shops are usually at the beginning of the month when I need to buy in order to replenish items missing from the pantry. But by buying the specials, the hope is that I won't have any missing items.

    There haven't been many meat specials lately, except for smoked sausage, hotdogs and bacon which contain the nitrates and nitrites that aren't very good for you in large doses. Fortunately, I do have turkey, fish and ground beef in the freezer to balance out that side of things. I also like my eggs and cheese. I should only need bread and milk this week.

    1. Yes, I try to stock up when things go on sale. I don't have a huge freezer - just what comes with the fridge (a side-by-side combination), but it is sufficient for me, since I am just one person. The key is to know what is in there!

      It's good you have turkey and fish, etc. in the freezer; hopefully, by the time you finish all that, there will be another meal special so you can stock up!

  4. How sweet of your brother to call you, it must have been a pleasant surprise. You're doing so well with your monthly budget and I see you have vegetables. I'm getting bogged down with deciding what to cook for meals at the moment. I get fed up with trying to please everyone.
    It's good news about your car. X

    1. Thanks, Jules. It was very nice of him to call. He's a medical doctor, a professor, actually, who used to practice in the UK (his son is also a doctor, a neurosurgeon, also in the UK). Brother is now retired, but he has been interested in my treatment, etc. from a medical point of view as well as brotherly concern.

      Ah, yes, plenty of vegetables, this week! LOL. I was telling one of my friends that I seem to be eating the same vegetables over and over, partly because they are the ones that I like best. At one time, I was going to try a new vegetable on a regular basis, but that didn't happen. Might do that again, now that my taste buds are coming back.

      It is hard to prepare meals that will please everyone in the family, isn't it? I know some people prepare different meals for the children while the adults have something else. Of course, it is a little different if it is one of the adults who doesn't like the meals. Hope you are able to come up with some meals that the entire family enjoys.

  5. Had to laugh at your egg buying/or not buying? I did the same thing, I went to wal mart the other day to pick up some fruit/bread. They had large eggs for 45 cents a dz. Wow...... I really did not need more eggs.But.......... well, I walked away, then ended up going back and buying 2 dz. I reasoned that I wanted to make some banana bread. I could make some sweet potato bread too.. and that would use up a lot of eggs.. [I can talk myself into spending]
    Good prices on your fruits..
    I had a good Friday.. I mopped the house, and did some laundry. We will be having revival at church this week, so I needed to get things done.. Busy week.
    have a great weekend.

    1. Wow, Judy, 45 cents a doz! What a deal! I've read that one can freeze eggs (for future baking and cooking); that might be an option, if you want to take advantage of a deal like that. I was doing the same thing as you - saying if I bake this week, then, I could use up the eggs, but it's 90F this weekend, so I am kind of glad I didn't decide to bake! Too hot!

      You take care of yourself during this busy week! Don't get too tired. Have a lovely weekend and week ahead, Judy.

  6. So nice that you could talk with your brother, Bless. Hope you can figure out how to make your trellis work. Glad your car's light was just for maintenance. I always panic whenever a light comes on the dashboard. My husband says he's going to put a piece of electrical tape over them, so i can be blissfully ignorant.Ha! Hope you have a wonderful Sunday.


    1. Thank you, Jane. Fortunately, the wrong piece is at the very bottom, so, worse comes to worst, I'll just leave it out and it'll be a shorter trellis than it is supposed to be! It is also a lighter trellis than I would like for the purpose of sending the grape vine, so, I think, I'll use it for a jasmine vine and do something else for the grape.

      Hope all is well with you and your garden is coming along well. Looking forward to reading your new update. Take care, Jane.

  7. Lovely to have a surprise call from your half brother.
    I am catching up on your stories and photos again. The week seems to go fast. I was thinking of you, as I kept looking for a special on butter and then figured I could probably manage with what we have until a sale comes on (hopefully next week). I noted your comment about bananas ripening and I just read a tip that they don't ripen as fast if you cover the stems with plastic wrap (even better if you separate them and do so but I have kept them in their bunch). So far they seem to be much slower before ripening to the point where I need to think about banana bread. Another tip was to open them the way the chimps do, by twisting off the opposite end to the stem. Can't remember what advantage there was to doing this - maybe to have a chimp experience? 😊

    We had another syrup bottling session one evening followed by tea and chitchat with the ladies - always fun. DH is on his last boiling and the sap run is at an end. This is the time when we dig out all the odd shapes and sizes of bottles, everything from the regular type to mason jars, having exhausted the supply of the best new bottles!


    1. Bushlady, I was thinking of you, too, this week, because one of the grocery sales advertised a 32 oz. jug of organic, pure maple syrup for $11.49. I have no idea if that is a good price or not; what do you think?

      I've seen pictures of bananas with their stems wrapped in plastic on-line. I can give it a try, although I think the bananas ripen so fast here because of the heat. It was 90F yesterday and today!

      Sounds like you have had a busy week and will be busy for a few more days! Hope it has been a successful sap season for you.

      Have a lovely day, tomorrow.

    2. I think that would be a good price for nearly a litre of good maple syrup, translating the USD to CAD ($15.48 today). We often have good prices here in the grocery stores but the smaller operations usually charge more, so a local guy I just looked up would want about $20CAD for that size jug.

    3. Thank you for letting me know, Bushlady. :)

  8. It sounds like you had a very good Friday all around Bless! I'm happy you got to talk to your brother and got to buy the foods you wanted at great prices. I hope your weekend is going equally well!

    1. Thank you, Nathalie. The weekend is going well, except it got very hot! But tomorrow is supposed to be cooler. Hope all is well with you, too.


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