Day Seventeen

Thursday, February 26, 2009

What I Bought on Day Seventeen

What I Bought on Day Seventeen

Summary Page

First, I need to say that I do not understand the appeal of blogging as a full-time job. Maybe I’m just not doing it right.

And secondly, I’m realizing now that the aerial shot of the food probably wasn’t the best idea since you can’t tell how much is in each of the bowls. Sorry about that.

The good thing about my not being able to get to the store is that I had extra money to work with. The bad thing is that by the time I got to the store I wasn’t in quite the zen state I needed to be to get the right amount of food, so I ended up with about twice as much as I meant to from the bulk bins. But I had the money available ($1 from Monday, $1 from yesterday, and today’s dollar, plus some change from earlier, for a total of $3.09 today) and there’s enough time left in the project for me to work through all of it, so I think that’s fine.

After three days, the steel-cut oats with sunflower seeds got a thumbs-up as an A-1 breakfast, so I got a supply of those and am planning on having that until I’m sick of it.  It’s healthy, it tastes good, it’s filling, and it’s really easy. All good.

I also got some chickpeas (meant to get $0.20 worth but ended up with $0.40 worth — but given how hard it’s been for me to get to the store lately I think that having extra food is probably not a bad thing) and meant to get just enough millet to make one full serving (I had some left from the first week’s purchase) but got more than that too. Overpurchasing was definitely the theme for today’s trip.

Also swung by the Compare for a couple of tangerines (or, as the receipt calls them, tangarines). Happy to see those again.

Total spent was $2.15.

For Meal One, I had steel-cut oats with toasted sunflower seeds and a tangarine. My new favorite meal.

For Meal Two, I had sort of a millet pilaf with spinach and chickpeas. Except it isn’t really a pilaf, because I don’t have any fat to saute vegetables in or coat the millet with before cooking, and I wasn’t able to get to the carniceria to get another onion. But I cooked the millet in the leftover chicken broth and overall it was pretty nice. [Sorry, problems with the millet/chickpea/spinach picture, but hope to have it posted soon.]

So that’s where we are for today.

Over and out.

Receipt Day Seventeen

Receipt Day Seventeen

7 Responses to “Day Seventeen”

  1. macudc Says:

    The last thing I expected to see was a Whole Foods receipt, I went in there for a pomegranate and left having spent $60!

  2. lessisenough Says:

    In my regularly scheduled life, I shop almost exclusively at Whole Foods, because it’s the most convenient store for me (walkable and near other things I walk to).

    A lot of items are pretty well priced, and they have good specials on produce and meat sometimes, and because the one near me has bulk bins, I can easily buy smaller quantities of things, which I like. They get a bad rap because they have high-end stuff and everything looks so good you spend a lot. But you don’t have to.

    Sort of funny story… I’m always a little bit amazed at how much the bill is for the person in front of me in the checkout line and sometimes I look at their stuff and then try to guess the price, see how close I am (like my little mini-version of the Price is Right).

    Once, someone in front of me bought prepared mac and cheese and it was literally like $8. It was so hard for me to not jump in and say “My god — don’t buy that! You can make twice as much for $3 and it will be better!” I managed to refrain but after the person was done I said something to the checkout person about how much the mac and cheese was, and she said “Yeah, that’s one of the things we sell that I can’t believe that anyone even buys.”

    It was funny.

  3. I am finding this fascinating. It is inspired, I for one am currently dieting & exercising to lose weight and improve cholesterol (per MD and long overdue.) Basically you are eating the way I have been eating for the last 4 weeks…but I am spending SO much more. I spend a ridiculous amount of money on 2 of us who really do not need as much as we have available to us. One thing I have to comment on is the price of your items in NC as opposed to the prices here in Massachusetts. Big difference. I think if I were trying to do this I would have to start with a basic pantry and then at least 3.00 a day per person. BUT…I admire this and hope to keep following along. You have made me take an even harder look at reducing my spending and still eat in a healthy way.
    I found you by way of a vegan nutrition site, by “accident”…keep up the good work with this project.

  4. lessisenough Says:

    Definitely prices vary widely by location. But I will also say that in doing this project I’ve discovered a number of great resources that I didn’t even know were available — for instance meat at the local Latino supermarket is incredibly cheap, and I had never been there before I started thinking about doing this project.

    So if you feel like you’re spending too much and it’s important to you to try to address the problem, take a few trips to some local stores — don’t shop, but just look at prices. You might be suprised by the difference. And then you can see if you can structure things in your life to take advantage of the different bargains that different places have. It might be too hard and not worth it, but you might be surprised what you can get to work.

  5. Tracy Says:

    I noticed the bag refund for -.10 on the Whole Foods receipt. Would you please explain what that is and how to get it? Thanks!


  6. lessisenough Says:

    The bag refund has been a topic of intense interest here at Less Is Enough. Some have even implied that by taking the refund, I am CHEATING. (It is a tough crowd here at Less is Enough.)

    This is the deal.

    For a number of years, Whole Foods (or at least the Whole Foods near me) offered customers who bring their own bag $0.05 for every bag they use instead of taking a bag provided by the store. In January, they increased the amount to $0.10 and started selling reusable bags and announced that they would stop providing plastic bags. So now, you either use a bag you brought with you or you get a paper bag.

    I generally walk to the store, and I use the bag that I’m using for all my other stuff, so I get the discount.

    If you buy one thing and don’t need a bag, they don’t usually give you the discount, it’s generally only if you use a bag you brought instead of taking one of their bags. During this project, I had one purchase where I didn’t take a bag and didn’t get the discount, and two or three purchases where I bought multiple things, which, even though they were small, would have required a bag, but instead I used my own. So for those I got the refund.

    Personally, I wish that everywhere did it like in some European countries where they make you pay for a bag if you want one. I think a lot of people would be a lot more motivated to bring their own bag if they had to shell out actual cash for a bag.

  7. Last year they started selling reusable bags in our local markets…99 cents each. They don’t discount your total for using your own but they do encourage it to help the environment.
    P.S. thanks for the reply to my comment on locale and prices.
    If you are stocking a basic pantry here you can find some buys at the “job Lots” or discount stores that have a food section or if you live in a larger city that has ethnic markets etc you CAN get cheaper prices. For me that is a bit of a drive so gas-wise not worth it but if you can do your errands and shop in one trip you can do a little more price shopping.
    I think the key to this plan would be stock your pantry with spices and supportive meal prep things you can freeze or store THEN the dollar (or so) shopping can be really creative in a tasty way…and what you have done so far is VERY creative!
    you have me hooked following along. :o)

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