Join Early Retirement Today
View Poll Results: what's your food strategy?
Millennialist: I have a year's supply if necessary 4 4.17%
Costco-holic: could survive a couple months 25 26.04%
"Normal" shopper; every week or two a 'big shop' 44 45.83%
Shop a couple times a week at different places for choice & freshness 22 22.92%
Shop every day or two.. or eat/take out a lot 6 6.25%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 96. You may not vote on this poll

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Food: are you a hoarder/stocker-upper or a daily shopper?
Old 01-23-2008, 06:35 AM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
ladelfina's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 2,713
Food: are you a hoarder/stocker-upper or a daily shopper?

Recently it's been kind of chilly and wet and we just haven't felt like doing our normal shopping which is always kind of a big enterprise. So day by day I've been trying to cobble meals together with what we have on hand. This started more than two weeks ago, and I could probably stretch it out another week at least. (N.B., no going out or takeout.. that would be 'cheating'!) The only added item I had DH pick up was a package of eggs. It's not that I plan to survive a siege.. just the "normal" contents of a (small) fridge/freezer and pantry. I actually like the bare fridge since it makes me focus and things are not 'going missing', but it's very rare situation that also makes me feel incomplete.. like I'm getting ready to move or something.

What's your food strategy and why? (or do you not think about it?)

Also, do you see clear advantages/disadvantages to your approach? (I've gotten pretty good at keeping the fridge full to bursting without having much of anything go bad, but it still happens from time to time.. Here there are no real discounts to be had on bulk purchases, so in my equation that's not a reason for stocking up.. instead, it just must be an instinct.)
__________________

__________________
ladelfina is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 01-23-2008, 06:42 AM   #2
Full time employment: Posting here.
jambo101's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Montreal
Posts: 940
We usually do a major shop once a week but usually have to buy stuff a couple of times a week that we forgot in the big shopping list.
Chilly and wet sounds like nice weather to me,try a foot of snow and -20
__________________

__________________
"Second star to the right and straight on till morning"
jambo101 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 07:08 AM   #3
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,539
Usually once-a-week. Keep a 3x5 card on the kitchen counter and write down what will need replacing. Sometimes she forgets to write something down and one of us has to make another trip. Of course I never forget to write anything down. It just evolved that I do the grocery shopping because I'm better at sticking to a list than she is, and early in the marriage much of the time I had days off during the week.

The only bulk purchases happen when two conditions are met: It's on sale and can either be frozen or doesn't need refrigeration.
__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 08:40 AM   #4
Moderator
Sarah in SC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 13,456
I fantasize over those catalogs for the end-timers--I love the idea of having 20 lbs of freeze dried vegetables and the survival bars, but have never actually bought any. I dream of having one of those super stocked "bug-out" bags that the survivalists always talk about!

I usually buy once a week, but about once a year, I go through the cabinets and we eat all the stuff that has piled up uneaten. It makes for inventive meals, for sure! Since we live a 1/2 hour round trip from the grocery, there is no running out for something.

I have recently bought frozen (grass fed) meat in bulk, from local SC farmers, to keep on hand. I now have a stocked freezer, full of tasty beef, pork, and chicken from farmers I know. I also just signed up for the first CSA (community supported agriculture) to be started in our area, and I'm looking forward to getting a basket of fresh, local produce through the 2008 growing season. All of these represented big expenditures in up-front costs, but will mean less spent at the grocery store.
__________________
“One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching.”
Gerard Arthur Way

Sarah in SC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 08:54 AM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,304
When I was still w*rking, my DW was a stocker upper. She had four 6 foot high shelves filled with all sorts of cans and dry goods. She would pick them up on sale as many as 24 at a time (beef or chicken broth).
The freezer and fridge were the same way. I swear there was some meat in the back that she forgot and was a year old (I'm exaggerating).

Before implementing our retirement plans (extensive traveling), we started a year 1/2 ago to start eating out fo the larder. It took us almost the entire year to finish everything in the fridge and off the shelves, but we did it.

If we ever get back to a routine, I am sure she will go back to her stocker upper ways. I am willing to bet she save us 30% on our food and even more on our clothing costs. She did this for over 30+ years of marriage. She is a great partner and the reason why we could FIRE.
__________________
Life is GREAT!
megacorp-firee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 09:03 AM   #6
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 37
I look in the flyer and typically go once a week, and if there's a really good sale I'll stock up on something especially if it's something I use all the time like soup, rice, and pasta.
__________________
laurinsane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 09:04 AM   #7
Full time employment: Posting here.
Sandy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Florida
Posts: 855
We do one large shopping once per week, but end up back at the store another 2-3 times during the week for consumables such as milk, bananas, extra sandwich meat, etc. With 2 active kids on the edge of puberty, I only expect it will get worse.

On the other hand, the pantry has plenty of boxed, canned, and other stuff, that could stretch for quite awhile. We tend to buy those things on sale and stock up. (not as much as megacorp-firee). There are also things that DH buys trying to get something different, but finds that no one wants it (eg rice-a-roni, weird canned soups). I cull those things out for food drives.
__________________
I would not have anyone adopt my mode of living...but I would have each one be very careful to find out and pursue his own way, and not his father's or his mother's or his neighbor's instead. Thoreau, Walden
Sandy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 09:05 AM   #8
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 377
I keep 2 weeks of normal eating food, and then alot of canned foods, and normally freeze a deer or something large in my freezer, which I keep a backup generator for.

#1 Venison is amazing
#2 You never know, do not want my wife to be hungry because I wasn't ready.

(BTW another question, how much would you all say you spend per month on food, my first month of ER, my wife and I spent around $500)
__________________
No Soup for you! Come back 1 year!
Bigritchie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 09:26 AM   #9
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,527
We fall into the "daily shopper" mode - except it is weekly for us. That cycle serves our needs very well and we don't really eat at home that much anyway. We also have very limited shelf space in our kitchen/pantry for storing food (approximately 15-18 square feet). If we stock up on stuff it usually goes bad (especially perishable stuff).

One weekly trip to walmart and the occasional monthly trip to trader joe's for hummus, wine, nuts and cheese.

We do hoard the wine from TJ's but that is because it is so far away. And it is non-perishable. But they are building a new TJ's down the street, so it will be much more convenient soon.

We find it is a lot more exciting to buy a pack of steaks or chicken or some type of fish (fresh or frozen) and make it for a meal or two than to have a freezer full of frozen chicken, fish and meat. We do keep a small supply of staples on hand - a few cans of beans, cans of fruit, a couple boxes of mashed potatoes and potatoes au gratin, lots of jar pasta sauce, a few boxes of spaghetti, bags of grated cheese, etc. Stuff that we can make into a meal or to compliment some other main dish. Or to take into the office for potluck lunch type deals.
__________________
FUEGO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 09:37 AM   #10
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
brewer12345's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 16,391
We tend to accumulate stuff and then work it down a couple times a year. DW does most of the weekday cooking since I have no time and she cobbles simple stuff together while chasing the two kids. I do most of the shopping and tend to be optimistic about how much and what she will cook during the week, so some ingredients hang around until I use them on teh weekends. Two small children ensure regular trips to Costco and the supermarket.

Aside from milk for the kids, I would guess we could get by for a month or two with what we have on hand. After the 2005 hurricanes, I also bought a case of MREs and make sure to keep a 5 gal stainless steel homebrew keg of fresh water around.
__________________
"There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest have to pee on the electric fence for themselves."



- Will Rogers
brewer12345 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 10:07 AM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Outtahere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,677
Dh shops weekly for staples like bread, milk, fruits, veggies and what ever meat he wants for the week. I shop every couple of weeks for the stockable things like canned goods and any special items I want to prepare, once a month or so we go to Sams to stock up on paper goods, cereal and peanuts (dh loves them).

Before we were married dh would shop daily but the grocery store was in his backyard, made it very simple.
__________________

Dogs aren't our whole lives, but they make our lives whole. - Roger Caras
Outtahere is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 10:11 AM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
By primarily shopping at Costco and Sams, my food strategy is dictated by my retailer. Which means case lots and large boxes, jars and cans of everything.

To some degree, having a couple of weeks of stuff built up was how it had to work when we lived a 50 minute drive from Costco. Now that its a few miles up the road I guess I could cut back, but four years of habit forming is tough to break.

Now what exactly am I going to do with a 3lb bag of sundried tomatoes and a big plastic jug of enough dried mushrooms to reinsulate the attic?
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 10:12 AM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
maddythebeagle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,450
We stock up more than probably need...t-p, coffee, paper towels, soap, etc. when find deals/Sams Club....
__________________
- Hurry! to the cliffs of insanity!
maddythebeagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 10:22 AM   #14
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,527
Quote:
Originally Posted by cute fuzzy bunny View Post
Now what exactly am I going to do with a 3lb bag of sundried tomatoes and a big plastic jug of enough dried mushrooms to reinsulate the attic?
And that is why we don't shop at Costco/Sam's Club!
__________________
FUEGO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 10:47 AM   #15
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
Eh, the way I look at it is that the price is so much cheaper and the quality is so good, that if I have to throw half of it out then I'm still doing okay.

Case in point: Half and Half for my coffee. I usually buy a half gallon at Costco for about $2.60. We use it in soups and chowders and for any apps calling for dairy like souffles and savory/sweet custards. I always end up chucking a half cup or so when it goes past its expiry. But a quart of the stuff is about $3.10 at the supermarket. Another one: Half gallon container of really good cottage cheese is about $4 at Costco. We'll eat it and make stuff like cottage cheese coffee cake out of it and usually finish it. Small container at the supermarket is $2.95.

I do wonder sometimes if any of this bulk shopping driving the menu ends up turning into extra pounds.

Oh yeah, and before I forget...four pounds of BACON at Costco are under $9...
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 10:54 AM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
maddythebeagle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,450
Quote:
Originally Posted by cute fuzzy bunny View Post

Oh yeah, and before I forget...four pounds of BACON at Costco are under $9...
I am awaiting a reply that you made cake out of that, too

Seriously, there was a thread on this topic in Fire and Money awhile back...I believe it was Masterblaster quoted some author that pointed out saving 20% on stuff you were going to use was better return than what you could get from investments...
__________________
- Hurry! to the cliffs of insanity!
maddythebeagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 11:03 AM   #17
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
cute fuzzy bunny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Losing my whump
Posts: 22,697
Indeed.

So far no bacon cake. But I do wrap meatloaf in it, wrap filet mignon kebabs in it that I make from the tail ends of the whole filet mignons I get at Costco for $9.98/lb and hand cut at home, bacon wrap the fist sized scallops I get at Costco for $8-9/lb market price...but so far I've avoided the 5 gallon can of water chestnuts...

About the only thing I've struggled with from Costco was the two giant cans of minced clams. I spent a weekend making clam dip, clam chowder, clam fritters and linguine with white clam sauce. Still didnt quite use them all up before I was massively overclammed.
__________________
Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
cute fuzzy bunny is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 11:11 AM   #18
Moderator
Sarah in SC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Charleston, SC
Posts: 13,456
CFB, I never thought I'd say this, but thank God my DH doesn't cook--we'd be big as houses with that kind of "man" cooking. Not that bacon wrapped meatloaf doesn't sound really awesome!
__________________
“One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching.”
Gerard Arthur Way

Sarah in SC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 11:13 AM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
maddythebeagle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 2,450
__________________
- Hurry! to the cliffs of insanity!
maddythebeagle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2008, 11:25 AM   #20
Moderator Emeritus
CuppaJoe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: At The Cafe
Posts: 6,866
OP, I’m afraid I’m your opposite, I'm a "a dirty-rotten market-timing spendthrift." I’m reducing my exposure to the grocery markets these days, its too cold and rainy to carry much home from the store; and the produce is unappetising. I wind up eating frozen veggies and just scrounging if I eat at home. I feel that this is the time of year to go easy on myself (and SO) so we go ahead and "cheat": eat out and get take out & deliveries. Looking forward to signs of spring: Ground Hog Day, Mardi Gras and Chinese New Year. Will increase my grocery market stock when the really good produce comes in. Soon soon, spring is just around the corner.

CFB: The clam idea inspires me: once substituted champagne for the white wine in the clam pasta sauce, best meal I ever had at home.
__________________

__________________
CuppaJoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Investors Business Daily tgotch FIRE and Money 10 11-01-2007 12:37 PM
Upper arm/Shoulder exercises calmloki Health and Early Retirement 4 04-27-2007 10:16 AM
Thinking daily about it now zaqxsw Hi, I am... 11 10-22-2006 08:38 PM
daily show Martha Other topics 3 09-08-2005 06:04 PM
Calculators and following the dow daily runnerr FIRE and Money 25 05-13-2005 01:29 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:48 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.