Tag Archive: grocery shopping


Hello Monday. Seems like you were just here… and I’m not even working yet. Here’s what’s batting around my head today:

  • I have a dentist’s appointment to get cavities filled. Ugh. I get myself worked up over these visits. One of them isn’t my fault though, a filling came out. Still not looking forward to the afternoon.
  • Liked the Academy Awards last night, although I could have done with a REAL musical number.  if the Social Network had won Best Picture, though… it would have been an ugly scene at my house (I’m rather baffled at the popularity of the film.)
  • About midnight, as we were wrapping up the awards – I was coming out of our kitchen and heard baby P stirring in her bedroom down the hall. All of the sudden, she rips one of the loudest farts I’ve ever heard. Ground-shaking. Is it wrong that I collapsed onto the floor in the giggles?
  • I have one week and two days before I return to work from my maternity leave.
  • I haven’t been grocery shopping in a week, and we’ve run out of milk. I don’t really like sitting down and writing up menus and shopping lists… even though I don’t mind the shopping itself. Guess I’ll have to do that today.
  • The car is in the shop, hopefully being repaired from the crash so that it’s drivable.

It just seems that today, and this week, are full of disappointing necessities. Things I don’t enjoy (nor does my bank account) are all headed my way.

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Well, we’ve done it.  Made it through a whole week! I’m rather proud of the effort – here’s some highlights:

Silence is golden

And that’s the truth! At first, I hated how quiet the house was. I’ve always been one to turn on the TV in the background for some noise while I do other things. But now I find myself listening to more music, and I even downloaded a few courses through iTunes U.  I’ve also read more in the last week than I probably have in the last year. I’m almost through re-reading C.S Lewis’ Space Trilogy, and currently reading The 4-Hour Work Week. We even went to the library and checked out several more books to read over the next few weeks.

Advertising is addictive

As one of our stated exemptions from the No TV rule, we watched the Super Bowl with some friends yesterday. I’m an ad junkie (and a marketing junkie in college) so I love the advertisements. After going without TV for a week, I was really surprised at how I reacted to some of the commercials. Arby’s had a few commercials and by the end of each, I was drooling and craving some fast food in the worst way. In fact, while I was out running errands today – I passed an Arby’s and got that same craving again. We are conditioned by those ads. Scary.

The ads weren’t that stupendous this year, and most left me bored. But I did have one that was my favorite ad:

Gave me goosebumps then, and gives me goosebumps watching it now.  It’s one of the best commercials in years.

Cooking is an art

And we feel like we’re just playing around with finger paint. We had never realized how much we had eaten out before – and cooking for ourselves has been an interesting experience.  There was the pizza attempt, where it took us three tries before we had a successful pizza dough (how we managed to mess up pizza dough, I have no idea!).  We ate spaghetti twice, since it’s easy and we knew we couldn’t mess that up.  I made stew for supper and decided to be ambitious and make heart shaped biscuits. They were delicious. My second batch, made from the left-over dough went into the oven as we were sitting down to eat. My bright idea was to turn off the oven and leave the biscuits inside to cook. Save energy, and they will still bake properly right? No. We had a laugh about it, and promptly trashed the bad batch.

“Mommy knows better now.” I advised my daughter who was snuggled up to me.

Jeff sighed. “But father knows best!” he declared.

Silly man.

A penny saved is a penny earned, and time saved…

Overall, we’ve saved money and I’ve been amazed at the things I’ve been able to accomplish. I even reorganized my freezer! We’re not spending money this month, but I foresee using some of this freed time for those home improvement projects that I’ve been putting off.

I think moving forward, we will be keeping a lot of these practices even though we won’t have any hard and fast rules about it.

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Jeff and I are trying an experiment in February. We’re calling it the ‘no-spend’ month.  Essentials only is the aim.

Here’s a few of our guidelines:

  • No slurpees
  • No fast food/take-out pizza, even when we’re tired (or lazy)
  • No gratuitous purchases at the bookstore or grocery store
  • Stick to a grocery list at the store, no buying extra things because they’re ‘on sale’ or a snack because we’re hungry on our way home.
  • Eat out of our cupboards/freezer
  • No money spent on movies

In addition to the no spending rules, we’re also going to make some rules about using our time.

  • Reduce/eliminate TV watching (Exemptions for the Super Bowl, movie award shows)
  • No video games on XBox, iPod or computer

Even though we’ve set this out, we’re giving ourselves some flexibility in it. For example, we received gift certificates for our local movie theater at Christmas time. Pairing that with some concessions items that we had earned through the theater’s rewards program, and we’ll be able to see a movie for free.  I’m also doing my cooking challenge, but it will be incorporated into our grocery list – and we’ll still stick to it.

It’s going to be a difficult month at first, since we’re used to queuing up a TV show on Netflix when P is up in the middle of the night and can’t sleep. But I think as we go along, we’ll realize how much nicer it is to explore some of our other hobbies or even find new ones!

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