(And three frustration relievers to make the trip more bearable)
Rising food and fuel costs mean that we are constantly being challenged to make our dollars stretch further. And as homeschooling mothers, we really need to stretch those dollars, as most of us are managing on one salary. I’ve got a few tips here to help you shop wisely and economically at the supermarket.
To Save Money
1. Don’t shop when you are hungry.
This is a definite no-no. Shopping on an empty stomach means that you will pick up more things than you need. You are more likely to pick up that bag of chocolate chip cookies or that box of donuts when the growling gets underway.
2. Make a shopping list.
This is another protection against picking up things that are too costly. If you just buy what is on your list, you are less likely to overspend. I keep a small pad and pencil on the fridge (use magnets) and my family writes things on the list as stocks run low. This is a really effective housekeeping method that works well for me.
3. Don’t forget to take the shopping list with you…
when you go out to shop. Yes, I’ve gone and forgotten my list more than once! Using your list also helps you to remember everything you need and this saves you going out for a second minor trip in between your weekly ‘big shop’.
4. Clip coupons or read the supermarket advert when it comes.
Checking up on what is on special this week and stocking your cupboard is a great way to keep your bills low. I enjoy the challenge of trying to buy as many items as I can on special each week.
5. Buy more staples than prepared foods.
It may be easier to buy a box of macaroni and cheese, but it’s not very economical. Also, prepared meals are more likely to have lots of food additives which are not good for your family’s health.
6. Buy supermarket ‘own brands’.
The supermarket home brands are always cheaper than the ‘famous names’ and they are often the identical product with a different packaging.
Three Frustration Relievers
1. Shop at the same place.
In a new supermarket, you spend most of your time looking for things and walking up and down every aisle, which often leads to forgetting an item or two. Going to the same store each time makes you more familiar with the prices so you can estimate your bill as you write your grocery list.
2. Go shopping at the quiet time.
I usually go at 7.30 am on Tuesday morning. If you have someone to leave the children with, you can be home by 9 am, ready for the day!
prepare them with a shopping list each, asking them to look out for three or four items each. This will keep them busy and engaged and help to make the trip easier to handle.
What other things do you do to make supermarket shopping economical and comfortable for yourself?
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