I spent on average about a half day a week running errands. I have gotten to the point where I make my little circle tour. I go from Sprouts (a store kind of like Whole Foods)–great prices on produce and scoopable bins for black beans, dried fruit, flour, sugar, oatmeat, and stuff like that. But their prices on spinach aren’t so great. For that I hit Costco—and for their eggs and sometimes for the chicken. Drop that off at home. Then to the post office and library and on to the grocery stores closer to my house for the other things I need.
I used to just go to one grocery store for everything. I was tutoring so many hours that I barely had time to do that. In this economy, some of my families have lost their jobs and no doubt their homes. They can no longer hire tutors. So they are cutting back. So, in turn are we. It has become empowering. I am surprised by how much we are saving. For instance 2 weeks ago, Sprouts had peaches and nectarines for $0.67/pound. Safeway and Albertson’s had them for $2.27/pound. We eat a lot of produce in our house—so it has been a lot of fun to dash about a bit.
Since there have been some store closings in the area [we are in AZ, after all] I have gotten a nice start on gift shopping as well. We have numerous relatives with birthdays in the last quarter of the year and there is always Christmas ;-)/
My point isn’t to try to tell folks “uh, use coupons, bargain hunt, uh compare prices”. Rather, my point is that through the loss of some tutoring jobs I have had to get creative. I have had the time to be creative….and our bottom line is not going to suffer nearly as much as I feared. And it is a LOT of fun to get 2.5 pounds of Spinach for $3.29 instead of 1 pound for $5.99! My son needs a lot of spinach—it helps with his lupus.
Instead of being angry about the prices at a particular store, I just go each store for the prices I like. Then I just smile as I walk past all the items that I consider overpriced—cuz I have options, baby! My fear of finances made me creative which inspired me which solved my problem. Turns out I’m happier. I believe things are looking up—yeh, still a perennial optimist.