Sunday, December 3, 2017

Sunday: December Grocery Shopping Week 1

December 3 Groceries
I went grocery shopping, today, and bought my groceries for the week, plus a few household items, cat food, and what I could buy now for the almsgiving: rice, lentils, dried garbanzo beans, onions, green chilies, coconut milk, oil, and candy coated almonds.  I had written out my grocery shopping list, yesterday, but had to rely on my memory when I was at the grocery store because I had left the list at home!  I had kept it on the table, next to my purse, but had forgotten to pick it up when I took the purse!  I should have put it in the purse!  But I bought most of what I had listed and a couple of other things I had forgotten to list, such as a new bottle of oil, another container of salt, and dish washing liquid.  I went to two stores, today.
At store 1, I bought:
2+ lb onions @ $.20/lb = $.42
1.6 lb red lentils @$1.29/lb from the bulk bin = $2.10
1.5 lb dry garbanzo beans @1.29/lb from the bulk bin = $1.94
1 package (.5 lb) candy coated almonds @$6.99/lb = $3.60
4 lb. bag jasmine rice = $2.99
0.16 lb. Serrano chilies @$.79/lb = $.13
4 cans coconut milk @$.99 = $3.96
1.5 lb bananas @$.49/lb = $.75
1 container iodized salt = $.89
Total =  $16.78

I also bought one non-grocery item from the household supplies budget:
1 container (90 fl. oz) dish washing detergent = $6.99 + $.66 tax = $7.65

(This container will probably last me all of next year, if not longer; I think I will write the date on the container when I first start to use it, to see how long it will last.)

12/3 Store 1 Receipt

At store 2, I bought:
1 container oil = $1.99
1 box crackers = $1.99
1 container flavored creamer = $2.49
1 loaf sliced bread = $.89
1 jar hazelnut spread = $1.99
1 box mac and cheese = $1.00
1 quart milk = $1.69
Total = $12.04

I also bought:
2 boxes (@20 count) quart sized zippered storage bags, @$1.69 (+ $.32tax) = $3.70
1 bag cat food (13 lbs.) = $8.99 (+ $.85tax) = $9.84

The coffee creamer has gone up in price; it was $1.99 when I last bought it!
12/3 Store 2 Receipt
Total spent on groceries = $16.78 + $12.04 = $28.82

December Grocery/Almsgiving Budget = $300
Spent to date = $28.82
Balance remaining = $300 - $28.82 =  $271.18
After I came home, I put the dried garbanzo beans to soak.  I will soak them overnight (I hear them popping, already!) and boil them tomorrow.  Then, saute them with onions, curry leaves, etc., and freeze them in smaller packets.  I want to cook and freeze as much as possible ahead of time, so that it won't be too overwhelming on the weekend of the almsgiving.  That way, if my hands cramp (they cramped tonight when I was doing the dishes), I won't have to worry too much - the majority of the food will be cooked!  Only to thaw and reheat.  This will be especially helpful since my friend who was planning to come and help the day before the almsgiving called me today to inform me that she won't be able to do so, after all; she'll only be able to come on the morning of the almsgiving.  So, the more I can get done ahead of time, the better it will be.

Have you gone grocery shopping yet, in December?  Are you planning to host Christmas dinner?  Have you made a menu for that, yet?  How about holiday baking?  Have you started?


  1. I forgot my list the other day, too. I still managed to get a cart full:). Probably more full than I would have done with the list, but there are still enough people living here that they will eat it up, even if I have 2 of something!

    I think my computer is now cooperating with leaving comments, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this will post!

    1. There was no problem with posting your comment, Becky. Glad to know your computer is working. :)

      It's good to know that extras won't go to waste, isn't it? I am finding out that, unless I really plan well, food is going to waste in my house, because I am buying more than what I can eat before it spoils or I am not freezing it in time. I really need to do better. :(

  2. You did a good job with your grocery budget..Lots of good buys.. Smart lady to get stuff done ahead for the Alms giving.
    Hope you have a good week.

    1. Thank you, Judy. I am trying to plan ahead and not get too tired or stressed. :)

  3. I wonder if there is anyone who hasn't at some time left their shopping list at home? I've done it more than once.

    I bought the ingredients for mincemeat on Saturday but haven't made it yet. I'm waiting on a delivery of Christmas gifts that was due today but will probably come tomorrow.
    This afternoon I decided to make the bathroom drape I wrote about, and I discovered that the slippery fabric that made me give up on the tablecloth I only used once, is a horror to sew! But I got the job done. Never again! The remainder of the cloth will not be made into anything by me, I'll just donate it I think.

    1. My daughter has told me I should learn how to make my grocery shopping lists on my phone! That's what she does and since she always has her phone, the lists and reminders are all there.

      Yum, mincemeat! When you make your pies, please have one for me!

      Oh, it didn't occur to me that the table cloth fabric would be slippery when being sewn! I'm glad you were able to sew it, though! Good idea to donate the rest of it.

      I hope your gifts will be delivered tomorrow and your preparations for Christmas go well.

    2. Bushlady, please see Hon Min's comment, below. She has a good tip for sewing slippery fabric - I'm copying and pasting it here:

      "I'm no longer in touch with Bushlady, possibly mention, a common way to manage slippery fabrics is the combination of a new needle, tissue paper beneath as a stabilizer and tiny starter stritches replacing common backstick initial step."

  4. I do not allow husband or self to grocery or otherwise shop without a list. It was the the 1st and easiest cost avoidance learned by highlighting impulse items on the receipt with a marker for a year. I wish DD might still be able to convince you to use the simple app on your phone to list grocery/shopping needs. It's frustrating to forget a key item; expensive to buy on impulse since foods expire or excess morphs to trash. Another app shows 'best buy/best price' very useful since some stores 'price match [particularly general merchandise].'

    In hopes of being helpful...

    I know we rarely agree so I hesitate to mention...because I found it shockingly difficult to transition to an 'empty nester,' status when both boys launched careers, I decided to research 'How to Transition into Retirement.' What does retirement look like since it's different for each of us.

    In spite of being financially independent, we were going to need a plan to realign purpose, priorities, values, new goals for 35 years to better outcomes and personal satisfaction. Of course I didn't expect to be interrupted with requirement to recover from 8 hours of open heart surgery.

    I've learned a lot. Surprisingly, many books focus on finance which would only be of value in early career stages. Individuals who haven't built a financial retirement plan by 60 are in grief .

    I wonder if you can be persuaded to look at some titles, the library has a wonderful selection. If you can tolerate reading from a computer screen, they can be chosen electronically. Visiting your library can be enjoyable if that is your preference.

    I'm no longer in touch with Bushlady, possibly mention, a common way to manage slippery fabrics is the combination of a new needle, tissue paper beneath as a stabilizer and tiny starter stritches replacing common backstick initial step.

    1. Hon,

      I added a comment on my reply to Bushlady and copied and pasted your very helpful tips on sewing with slippery fabrics so she can, hopefully, see it. :)

      As for shopping lists, it is mostly when I need to cater for a special meal such as the almsgiving or the rosary dinner, that I make a detailed list with specific items that are needed. My regular weekly grocery shopping lists are often unwritten, mental lists, because I tend to shop for the same things each week - bread, milk, maybe meat/chicken or fish, if needed or there is a good sale, fruits and vegetables. I realize it won't work for everyone, but it works for me. If I forget something, too bad! I will do without it for the week or, very rarely, do a second shop that week. I usually buy what is on sale and rarely splurge...unless I am at the Sri Lankan store! Then I indulge myself and buy all kinds of treats!

      Transitioning into Retirement...yes, I've thought about it. I've even read a few articles and discussed it with a few people a couple of times. I will be looking forward to a time when I'll, hopefully, have enough time to sleep in, garden, do crafts, and do all those other things I've put off doing, like really organizing my house! I have no wish to travel as I've been to most of the places I have wanted to visit and I am truly a homebody; I'm not someone who needs a lot of social interactions - even at the office, there are days when I don't really interact with people; and I don't need to be doing something all the time, but, if I do feel the need for something else to do (other than gardening and crafts, etc.), I might be able to do some volunteering at the library, perhaps, or get more involved at the temple, etc. A lot would depend on my health, though, wouldn't it? Because of that, I don't want to plan too much, other than just enjoy each day as it comes.


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