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Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Let’s Go Krogering

When I told one of my fellow bloggers where I was going this morning, she emailed, “You go to Kroger's? Isn't it a lot more expensive [than Wal-Mart]?”

Well, yeah, it is. Usually. But my husband and I shop on Senior Citizen’s Day, when we get 5% off. That usually equals the sales tax. Kroger often has some pretty good specials, which I buy if they’re items I use and need. Plus, Kroger has this limited special on its gift card: If you buy a $300 shopping card, Kroger credits it with an additional $30. You’re limited to a maximum of 4 in a limited time. I just bought my third one today. The offer expires sometime in July.

Also, Kroger issues some pretty good coupons to some of its faithful shoppers. Many of those coupons are for things I can actually use. And I clip other coupons, too. My plan is to use coupons for things that I need that are already on special. Sometimes I stockpile. Today, for instance, I stockpiled paper goods. A few weeks ago, I stockpiled dry dog food.

Kroger marks down baked goods, deli items, and meats that are almost out-dated, If it’s something I will use within a day or two, you’d better believe I take advantage.

Since Kroger is 14 miles from us, I only go to on Tuesdays. Often we take care of other business in Rocky Mount at the same time. We might tank up on gas ($3.85 this morning—the cheapest I’ve found in the area), then stop by Goodwill (where we usually buy a couple books), the library, the hardware store, etc.

Consequently, it takes two to shop. John mans one cart while I woman the other. Sometimes he takes a handful of coupons and goes one way, while I take a handful in the other direction. That saves time.

John with handful of coupons and our two carts.
Our cold bag and recycled bags are in the cart on the left.

On Tuesdays, Kroger provides free coffee and snacks. We usually partake of their hospitality—sometimes with people we know who are shopping the same way we do. Also, it helps to sit down midway through our shopping and regroup.

Another thing I like about Kroger is that it has paper bags. If you double-bag your cold stuff, it stays cold longer. If you double-bag your canned goods, you can carry a lot more. Consequently, to save bags, we take the doubled bags back to refill. We also have an insulated bag that we carry.

Time out for a rant here: Using paper bags does not mean that trees are dying in vain/the rain forest is being depleted/etc. for my paper habit. Not using paper bags won’t save trees. Paper isn’t made from old growth hardwoods; it’s made from fast-growing pines that are planted (and replanted) as a crop. We grow loblollies, which are used for paper products. (If you want to save trees, don’t buy fine furniture!) Using paper bags is highly preferable to using those flimsy plastic bags that are made from petroleum products. OK. Rant over.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Goodwill Goodies

I've gotten some goodies at Goodwill lately. Yesterday at the Rocky Mount Goodwill, I bought a long black coat that's made of pure silk. Original price tag was still on it—$159, then reduced to $79, then to $59. Goodwill had it for $20 but had just reduced it to $15. I figured, what the heck!

Cat hair won't show on it!

Now, where I will wear something designed to be worn over evening wear, I don't know. But I will look darn elegant doing barn chores in it.

A week ago, I bought some stoneware for $10.99 at the Westlake Goodwill. The 7 plates, 6 bowls, and 7 salad plates were all taped together, so I couldn't see who made it until I got it home.

Turns out it's the Heritage pattern by Brick Oven. One plate on one of the replacement China sites goes for $5.99. Guess I got a good deal. Plus the colors match my kitchen floor.

I'm happy with both my finds and I've done my part for recycling.