I absolutely love grocery shopping! I love making my list, shopping, and putting it all away. I'm like a kid in a candy store. The grocery store IS my candy store (as an aside, I don't really like cander per se). I can take my kids or leave them home, it's all good. I get in this shallow zen-like state. I go around the aisles I need and take in all the colours and fonts on the labels.
Maybe I just need to get more.
It's true what they say to "shop the perimeter" to get more bang for your buck. That's where the ingredients are and not the ready-to-eat, more costly foods. When I come home and look in the cupboards and there's "nothing to eat" I know I've done a good job and I smile. When I come home with all my bags full of nourishing food for my family, I smile. When I look at the receipt before I file it, I smile again.
I'm no coupon-er, I just can't be bothered. I also don't properly shop the sales and stock up on our "usuals". I have a tiny house and a tiny kitchen and can only store so much. I do, however, have a case of various canned beans, a case of diced tomatoes and a couple bags of frozen vegetables which, along with a well-stocked spice drawer, means I can throw together many meals out of what's around. There's still lots of room for improvement, but for now I am pleased with how I choose items and use them.
We've drastically reduced the amount of meat we consume and eat more of what meat eats - grains, fruits and vegetables and legumes (beans, lentils and tofu). When we do eat a meat meal, it's usually stretched with another form of protein (beans or tofu) or oats. I love to BBQ steak and still do it and enjoy it that much more.
So, for today I leave you with:
1) make a list (preferably after you've done some menu planning - lots more on that soon I hope)
2) seriously, don't shop thirsty or hungry. Fill up on water and a meal before you go. Leave your kids home if they are distracting or really sneaky (I don't like surprises when I get to the cash).
3) buy ingredients, not meals
4) shop the perimeter as much as possible
5) try not to forget stuff in the fridge and eat all that you bought, you paid for it.