Monday, January 3, 2011

Simplify Your Grocery Shopping – Save Your Money, Time and Health

How many times have you found yourself running to the store to quickly pick up something for dinner? Maybe you find yourself doing that more times than you’d like. You always mean to plan your grocery shopping, but you just never seem to find the time.

Eating on the run like that not only costs you in time and money, but often times nutrition for your family suffers as well. With just a little effort you can put together a grocery-shopping plan that fits your needs. It doesn’t need to be difficult or time-consuming.

Here are some helpful hints that will get you started:

Make a list and keep it on the refrigerator: When you run out of a staple ingredient, train everyone in the family to immediately write it down. If you visit 2 or more stores, place store names on the list with plenty of space between to fill in the items needed.

Plan meals for the week: Schedule themes for each night of the week. This helps you create a pantry of staples that you commonly use. And you’ll know what fresh produce to buy for the week. And don’t forget breakfasts and lunches. There are some good online meal planners, too.

Buy in bulk: Items that have a long shelf life and you use often can be bought in bulk, repackaged and stored. You can even do this with perishable food that can be frozen. Just remember to date the packages so you can use the oldest one first.

Use grocery store ads or coupons: Your grocery store may have some online or you can check out online coupon services. Keep them paper clipped to the front of your shopping list, and as you place each item in your cart, move the coupon to behind the list.

Use online grocery shopping services: Some of them will deliver to your door and others will do your shopping in-store then all you have to do is show up, pay for it and pick it up. They’re a great time saver and impulse buying becomes a thing of the past.

Visit the store at off hours so you don’t get caught in long checkout lines: Try the late evening while your partner stays with the kids. Not only will you get it done quickly because you’re tired, but shopping without children lets you shop without distraction.

Go on a full stomach. Most impulse buying happens because the shopper is hungry and everything looks good.

Hire help: It can take a lot off of stress to simply hand a list over to someone you trust to buy the items you need and stock them in your kitchen and pantry. If you live in the Silicon Valley, check us out at Simplify and see how we can help you with this.

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