Friday, 30 October 2015

Successful shopping, time it right

Hello. It's looking like an indoor day today, very wet outside. I might pop out later if it stops raining, in the meantime I shall be getting on with a new craft project. 
Take a look at my empty fridge, this was the state of play yesterday, nowt left except for one portion of veg stew, a few pickled onions, half a jar of lemon curd, soya milk, and dilute fruit juice. Can't make much out of that, ha ha. I like to see an empty fridge every so often, it reminds me that I am eating everything I buy and nothing is left to fester at the back out of sight. I am a bit low on tinned food as well, though there are some things left in the freezer. But I am craving fresh veg so a yellow sticker dash is needed. 
And this is the state of play this morning, stuffed full of various shades of green. Oooh, I'm excited.

I went to Tesco at 7.15pm and came back at 9.15pm, two hours wisely invested in buying up bargains. Carol, my favourite fruit and veg lady was in charge of the reductions. She is a star. My  home made bags are brilliant, will last forever. The shopping includes twelve tins of rice pudding, might as well buy bulk at 15p a tin. They won't all get eaten at once, one per week is my ration. A bag of cat litter is £1.55, can't find cheaper at the moment, I shall keep looking. In one of the bags are eight cartons of soya milk, I see they have dropped the price to match Aldi, I will buy it then. Mind you, Tesco have discontinued  the 88p box of Value Bran Flakes, so I will have to go to Aldi for that as it's still 88p there. Rocky coming to look at what I have, he gets so excited when I return with the shopping.  
 A yellow sticker picture, 5p, 10p, nearly all with 90% off the full price.


Here is my shopping list, as copied from the till receipt. Total £24.41

Non reduced (full price)
Cat litter £1.55
Small fresh milk 45p
12 tins rice pudding £1.80
4 tins baked beans @ 24p each = 96p
4 tins spaghetti hoops @ 20p each = 80p
8 cartons soya milk @ 59p each = £4.72
Large tub Value plain yogurt 45p (same as Aldi)
Six pack flavoured yogurt £1.00
2 boxes wet cat food pouches @ £1.50 each = £3
Quiche £1  (£1.19p at Aldi)
Sultanas 84p (same price as Aldi)
Nappy bags (300) 35p. Used as dog poo bags
Porridge oats 75p (same price as Aldi)
Olive spread £1
2 cat food pouches @ 29p each = 58p (treats)
Cooked chicken £1 (treats for cats)
Cooked ham £1 (treats for cats)

Yellow stickers
Sweet potatoes 15p was £1.50
Ordinary potatoes 15p was £1.50
Pink onions 10p was £1
3 bags Brussel Sprouts @ 7p each were 69p each
Organic bananas 14p was £1.39
Turnips 16p was £1.60
Cauliflower 7p was 69p
2 bags prepared broccoli/cauliflower 10p each were £1 each 
Fine beans 20p was £2
Bag prepared sweet potato and butternut squash 10p was £1
2 packs mushrooms @ 10p each was £1 each
2 packs leafy salad @10p each was £1 each
4 packs wild rocket @ 15p each was £1.50 each
Pack prepared carrots and peas 13p was £1.25
Iceberg lettuce 5p was 49p
And I have to confess, a treat for me. Pack of 5 jaffa cookies for 50p was £1. 

I am a few items short which will come from Aldi and other places. 350grm extra mature Cheddar cheese is £1.55 at Aldi. Will stock up on bran flakes 88p. FR eggs needed but they can usually be found for 79 - 89p most places. Cat and dog food is a reasonable price at Aldi, and I usually get my nuts from there as well. A visit to the Cash and Carry on the way to town to see if they have anything new in, sometimes pick up pet food there. Non of this is urgent, have plenty to be going on with.

Someone was watching me last night on her usual perch on the window sill, as I unpacked the shopping. Mayze is partial to a slice of cooked chicken. Aint she cute, such a pretty face.  

Another successful shopping trip, lots of money saved. I'm chuffed. Keep your eyes open for a bargain or two, don't shop if you are hungry or in a hurry because you will grab anything, and probably stuff you don't need. I don't make a shopping list, it's in my head. My eating is flexible, I base my meals around what I can buy cheaply. Only rules are no meat, no fish, and I only buy sweat things as a treat and if they are reduced. I'm cutting down on my sugar intake.

Thanks for popping in. Catch you soon. Toodle pip

36 comments:

  1. Amazing haul there! Well shopped! I am also trying to reduce sugar and sweetener intake - day 2 today and have already shifted 2lbs. Got a bit of a sociable Friday/Saturday night ahead thanks to the rugby but am working Sunday so hopefully I'll be sensible and restrict the old alcohol intake! How long have you been reducing sugar and what benefits have you noticed? I love your bags - very capacious!

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    1. Hi Julia. I don't use sweeteners at all, and thankfully I don't need to lose weight. I can't drink coffee without a spoon of sugar in it and I love a mug first thing in the morning. I don't usually have any more after that. I think twice about buying sweet tasting foods, and most of this is junk anyway. I like a treat but I am having less of them. I have noticed if I cut down on sugar the better my digestive system and bowels work. I read a lot of labels and compare different brands and alternatives. It is so confusing though, I look for the lower sugar numbers. I don't drink much alcohol at all. One bottle of wine over three days, once a month, and a four pack of cider once a month. In fact I haven't had any cider for about two months, might get some, ha ha.

      I think it's an ongoing thing with me, it's easy to slip back so every so often I give myself a good talking to, and walk by the sweeties and tell myself it's crap and I don't need it.

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    2. Good for you! I am giving myself a good talking to so frequently I fear people are starting to think me "that mad woman who lives at No.9"!

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  2. Excellent haul, well done! I do a lot of my shopping in tesco too. Most of the own brand products are the same price as other, cheaper supermarkets I find. Like you, those products which are cheaper elsewhere get left on the shelf by me too. It is about timing it right with reduced stuff. I've struck lucky a few times, then nothing on other days.

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  3. Well shopped, I'm like you in that these days I love to see the fridge almost empty. A quick wipe out while it's easy to do so and a bargain shopping trip is all it takes to make it look as good as yours. Well shopped.

    Mayze looks toooooo cute peeping out from under the curtains, she's a little star :-)

    I have a ex sister in law who fosters mummy cats and their kittens for a cat charity and she's about to be trying to find new homes for her latest batch. I'm trying everything in my power to resist temptation, but I've been watching their progress via Facebook since they were two weeks old and they are little darlings. I must be strong, I must be strong!!

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    1. Go one, have a kitten. Two of our grey ones have gone together to the same home.

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  4. A good haul there, I take a friend into Pontardawe every Friday night for a 7.15 group meeting. It is only an hour so I tootle off to Tesco and have a slow walk round. I keep my fridge well stocked with the 90% off bargains, and have found all the cheese that I need at around 75% off. I never have less than 2 Kg ready grated in the freezer. Mayze has such a pretty face, my visitor cat has just been for her breakfast. She is brave enough to come into the kitchen now as long as I leave the door open a little.

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  5. Jaffa cakes! they still make them! some things don't change after 55 years away...

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  6. Fantastic Haul there, when you eat healthy most of the time a treat is allowed, I try to be good in the week and have a treat or two at the weekend.

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  7. What amazing bargains you got Ilona. I love to see a fridge well stocked with fresh produce. Very cute photograph of Mayze. I'm collecting our kitten in the morning. Can't wait. X

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  8. Another amazing shopping trip. I really think minimal food waste is one huge way to reduce your grocery bill, something we are still working on but I am getting better. Made too much rice the other day so froze the extra in broth for the next batch of soup. Bought milk too close to its best by date and it went sour. Saved it for a scrumptious batch of pancakes. Bananas were mushy so whipped up a batch of banana muffins. I freeze my bread so nothing goes to waste, we only take out the number of pieces required for toast and should I happen to have old or stale bread it goes into the freezer for the next batch of stuffing, which is usually Christmas Easter and Thanksgiving with the turkey. Veggies here in Canada have increased in price drastically lately due to a low valued dollar against the US dollar so every penny I can save on groceries helps.

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    1. You are doing a good job there Cheapchick. Throwing food away is like throwing money away.

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  9. We have nothing like those deals! I certainly wish we did! Good for you! Like Cheapchick said, avoiding food waste has been a good way for us to keep our money in our pockets. That, and buying in bulk.
    Love the kitty picture!

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  10. Wow, that is a lot of food! Great deals!
    Our stores in the US never seem to lower the prices that much. I think they donate to food banks after an initial markdown, but I'm not sure.
    Your calico kitty is so sweet. I hope she enjoyed her treat.

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  11. You go, girl! I'm so happy you have a refrigerator full of veggies. But can you eat all that before it spoils? Good job on your shopping trip. Your kitty peeking out is so cute.

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    1. I will Linda. I check it every day, two or three times a day. I will make some stew and soup and freeze it. Salad will go off before sprouts so that gets eaten first. Prepared veg in bags goes off before whole veg. It's about being vigilant.

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  12. You got a lot of great deals.

    Although I know that many things in the UK are more expensive than in the U.S. (petrol for one, water for another), I have noticed that a lot of your regular, non-yellow-sticker grocery prices are lower than here. The soy milk, tinned items, bran flakes, sultanas (if they are what we call raisins) all are about 30% more here, even at Aldi, when the exchange rate is calculated. So you and other in the UK have it over us with grocery prices I think. Very interesting.

    Mayze is a cutie.

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    1. Hi. We have sultanas and raisins, they are similar. I get sultanas because they are cheaper.

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  13. Good haul. I love food bargains. Thank goodness for freezers as most of my bargains end up in there for use at a later date. There are big savings to be made if you're in the right place at the right time.

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  14. I am truly amazed at your haul. I shop in Sainsbury's mostly (that's our nearest supermarket, 5 miles away) and I have never seen bargains like this, either as many or reductions as big. It's just occurred to me that maybe it's because Tesco's end up with more stock left over. My husband actually works in a Tesco warehouse. They used to sell off stuff cheap to the workers but they stopped doing it as people were somehow abusing the system.

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    1. Hi Lizzie. I imagine that the staff took much more than they needed and sold it to their friends. Someone at Tesco isn't getting their orders done correctly and they end up over stocked.

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  15. Most vegetables can be par boiled for a minute, cooled and frozen if it looks like they won't make it another day. Works well for brussel sprouts, cauliflower, broccoli and spinach. Peppers and onions can be chopped up and frozen without par boil - nice to have on hand to pop into a sauté and they taste like fresh - and peppers rot pretty quickly. Impressive haul and prices!

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    1. Thank you. I will be making some of it up into soups and stews and freezing it. I will be eating the sprouts every day for the next ten days.

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  16. Doesn't anyone else want any of the bargains. Greedy!

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    1. Go away stupid troll. You are just jealous because you didn't get any.

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    2. What a stupid comment. If you find them and nobody else is reaching for them at the same time, then they are yours! You have the organisation and discipline to spend time in the shop sourcing the bargains. Many people would walk straight past them and don't have your common sense. Enjoy the satisfaction of being so organised and clever, and being able to afford your holidays and animals through your thriftiness! Good for you!!!! Susan x

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    3. Thank you Susan. Stupid troll wasn't there, didn't see that there was only a few people and loads of produce being marked down. Plenty for everyone and still a lot left after I had walked away.

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    4. Even if there had not been plenty left when you walked away, I think you have every right to take as much as you want if nobody else is around or it's clear that nobody else is trying to get to them. Anybody has that right, but I feel you have even more right in a way - because so much of the money you save goes towards animal rescue and kindness. You are one of the least selfish people I have ever come across! Susan x

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  17. Well done MQ! Really amazing haul. Most of it can be frozen for sure. I know you won't waste any of it. Good for you. Debbie

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  18. I love seeing the cache of groceries that you picked up on your trip to the stores. It reminds me of what happens here around about March. The snow and cold are still here, but the gardeners have sent away for their vegetable garden seeds, and they usually arrive by March or April. I found out quite by accident, that several gardeners do what I do.....we spread the seed packets out on the kitchen table and just enjoy looking at them all for several hours. When I clean out my food pantry and do an inventory it kind of looks like this too. Doing that inventory always makes me feel rich, even if I don't have much food. I just feel more prepared to pick up what I need, and thankful for what I have. Mary Jane in Canada.

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    1. A good idea to do an inventory. I try and keep my cupboards tidy and not cluttered, that way I can see what I have in an instant.

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  19. Wet here in Australia too. Cosy, cooking. x

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  20. Fabulous haul! I've never bagged as much as that so well done, no wonder your chuffed to bits! :)

    You mentioned in a earlier comment, that you like to enjoy a glass of wine very so often, can I ask where you buy your bottle of wine from? The cheapest I have found it for a half decent bottle is Aldi

    Amanda

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    1. Hi. I don't keep booze in the house, buy it as and when I fancy it. Out of sight out of mind. I sometimes pick up a bottle when I am in Tesco or Aldi. I like chardonnay and don't like to pay more than £6 for it. Can usually get it for around a fiver. I look at the %proof on the back of the label, the higher the better, 12 or 13. Cheaper wine at 9% is like water. I stick to white, because red stains your teeth.

      I am no expert on wine. I tend to go for Italian, Spanish, or Australian, but probably there is little difference between them.

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  21. The comment about you taking too much, and not leaving something for others (obviously they were wrong), reminds me of a day when I went into a local grocery store, and by the door was a shopping cart right full of marked down tins of decaffeinated coffee. We mix decaf with regular coffee, and decaf is very expensive. The tins were a steal, and there was nearly thirty of them. I picked up about half and took them to the till. The girl at the till said, "Why don't you take them all?" I said that I didn't want to be selfish, and wanted to leave some for others. She said "Please take them. That is why they are out there. They have been there for a few days." So I went back. Now here is where it gets entertaining. The cart was close to the till, and there was a woman standing within hearing distance of the conversation. When I reached into the cart to finish off the tins, this woman yells out, " Hey! Are you going to take them ALL!?" I asked if she wanted any of them, and she said, "NO!" in a huff. I looked around and there was no one else in the store, so I took them. The woman at the till just shook her head, and told me to have a good day. Mary Jane in Canada.

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  22. Hi.Yummy looking meals there,at bargain prices...good for you,Ilona!There is nothing going to waste there in your home.I have been putting soups/stews in the freezer lately too.The silly judgemental comments lately are just that:silly and judgemental,imo.I have a bottle of alpen bitters for "medicinal use" and schnapps for "shock" in the house right now.Okay,yes,am definitely prevaricating...tee-hee-hee.Warmest regards,D.

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