Saturday, August 29, 2009

Cheap food

I mentioned earlier about having to go to Kroger. Normally, I shop at HEB, but when Kroger runs their mega event, I sit down and stage a plan of attack. TennZen wrote out a post detailing what happens earlier this week. The short story, Kroger's mega events ($5 off when you buy 10 items) are fabulous ways to get name brand foods for cheap or free. Are they always the healthiest? Of course not, but we're a typical "gotta have convenience foods sometimes" family. So here's what you do....
  • Sit down with the sales paper and your coupon book
  • For each thing included in the mega event that your family will use, look for a coupon (even if it seems expensive)
  • Add up how much it will cost you.....usually the sales paper lists the "price if you buy 10", so you can just use the number shown. Remember that Kroger doubles and triples coupons, so those 30 and 35 cent coupons will give you steep discounts. Also remember that Kroger will let you "stack" coupons--the rules get a little tricky there, but the manufacturer coupons you get in the paper can be used along with some internet coupons.
  • Some things end up being free or 10 cents, so check prices on anything you might use
  • Remember that you can mix and match your items, you don't have to buy 10 of the same item
  • Make your list (I do this buy just putting my coupons in one spot, I don't buy anything I don't have a coupon for) and be sure it's a multiple of 10. If you have 19 items, you may be able to find something for 50 cents that's included in the sale(this week it was Quakes rice snacks, which the girls love)
  • Marvel at the shelf price versus what you paid. Kroger tends to be more expensive, but this saves me money over the usual HEB prices too.
Yesterday, I bought $60 worth of groceries (Kroger price) and paid $19. Not the best I've done, but a great way to start re-stocking after a long vacation.

We also planted our fall garden today. We are a little late on some things. Around here, tomatoes and such should be planted first of August, but technically they say you're okay through August. Lately, it has stayed warm through Christmas, with just a few light frost nights, so we decided to try anyway and I will start putting together row covers this week so we can easily cover the plants when needed. After the horrible drought we dealt with this year, we also moved toward a less self-sufficient watering method...we installed drip irrigation lines several weeks ago. So, today we planted:
36 tomato plants (roma)
24 broccoli plants
6 cabbage plants
3'x15' bed of beets
about 3'x12' bed of beans (kentucky wonder)
about 3'x12' bed of corn

The seed is all older stuff, so we sowed it densely and are hoping some of it comes up well. We've never ever done well with corn, but we had this on hand that we received as a gift, so we just sort of threw it out there. In a week or two, we will be planting carrot and onion seed.

1 comment:

TennZen said...

I hope your fall tomatoes do good for you!

Just about all our summer ones were ruined by blight.

Our beans and squash, though, have produced like crazy. I'm still picking squash!

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