Happy Weekend Fabbies! I have a confession: I love going to the grocery store. I love grocery shopping. (Which really makes complete sense since I love food so much.) This love for grocery stores began when I really started cooking. This happened in 2010 when I moved in with my then-boyfriend, now husband, Supreme in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Prior to 2010, I could probably count on one hand, maybeeee two, on how often I cooked a meal. Like, a full meal that I prepared. Not a frozen pizza, hot pocket, peanut butter & jelly sandwich, hot dog, ramen noodles or TV dinner (these were staples in my fridge back in the day! Haha! But let’s be clear: I still eat the vegan version of these things from time to time too.) It wasn’t until I moved in with my Honeybee in 2010 that I decided that I needed to go ahead and cook more. He was a professional athlete at the time, so I was like, “hmm, it probably will be best if I cooked so he can have energy to play…” Now, I was no cook either though. I mean, I knew how to prepare a few dishes, but I never grew up in the kitchen helping my mom cook. My mom cooked the food, and I ate it. Simple! Fast forward to adult life, and my meals consisted of going out to eat with friends or fast food, hot pocketing it or hot dogging it up, and eating at my job.
When I moved to Milwaukee, our house was located walking distance from the grocery store. But that grocery store wasn’t just any grocery store. It was a huge state-of-the-art market that had just been built (as in, opened within a few months of me moving there), and as somebody who was beginning to cook more often, I had to visit this grandiose locale frequently. When I walked in that store (Metro Market it was called), it was always “ooooohs and ahhhhhs” tumbling out of my mouth. Beautiful displays of fruit, the aroma of freshly baked bread, beautifully decorated signage, insane selections of any kind of condiment you could imagine, this grocery store definitely had visual merchandising down to a science. So it was there, in 2010 that my love for grocery stores and grocery shopping began.
Another factor that I’m pretty positive plays a part in my love for grocery stores was the fact that since that time in 2010, I have lived in 8 different cities. That means, in 7 years, I’ve had to learn new grocery stores in all of those cities. Now, for some, this may seem stressful. But not for me! I love change! I love having to discover new places, then learn where the bread is located or learn if their avocado selection is fabulous or not. I literally like to make new experiences into adventures, no matter how mundane a new experience may seem. (We actually teach our kids this as well).
It’s also funny to note, that since 2010, my diet has obviously changed, (I’m a vegan now), so my grocery lists have changed as well. So with this, I have also changed what I shop for, and how I shop. (Meaning, these days, I’m stalking labels of food products like never before!) But I still enjoy walking up and down the aisles, picking up the different produce, examining them, and searching for never-bought-before food products that I plan to use in new recipes. As I’ve browsed Pinterest for recipes, vegan cookbooks, Instagram vegan accounts, plus my mom’s recipes that I now veganize over the last several years, it has definitely helped my love for grocery shopping exciting, because there was always a new food item to locate in the store. All these things make for an incredible shopping experience! No?
I am also a list maker, so I have to absolutely go to the grocery store with a list. I typically make my lists on the “Notes” section of my iPhone, and even have old lists saved from 2012 when I first got an iPhone after having finally gotten rid of my blackberry. (My love for the different types of cell phones over the years is a whole different story!) If this isn’t nerd behavior by now, then I don’t know what is. But moving right along. Do you make grocery lists? Check out my poll below and let me know!
I make lists anytime before I go to the market, and I thought I would share with you guys what an average grocery list looks like for me in present day:
- Burro Bananas
- Seeded Grapes
- Fresh Seeded Cherries
- Roma Tomatoes
- Fresh jalapeño peppers
- Seeded Watermelon
- Fresh Dill
- Organic Chickpeas (also known as Garbanzo Beans)
- Vegan Just Mayo Mayonnaise
- Organic Almond Milk
- Organic Black Beans
- Garbanzo Bean Flour
- Spelt Tortilla Wraps
- Spelt Flour
- Ancient Grains Organic (sandwich) Bread
- Vegan Mozzarella Cheese (Daiya brand)
- Red Onion
- Bell Peppers
- Organic Peanut Butter
- Organic Strawberry Jam
- Organic Apple Juice
- 100% Organic Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice
- Coconut Sugar
- Organic Quinoa
- Organic Green Lentils
- Organic Ketchup (Zé is obsessed)
- Hot Sauce (me and Vito are obsessed-have to buy in bulk because of us lol)
- Grapeseed Oil
That list is just a comprehensive list, but the items listed above are typically what I keep in my house at any given time, because I can make so many different meals with these staple foods. For some people, they may shop at one or two grocery stores consistently. I however, shop at about five: Whole Foods, Sprouts, Trader Joe’s, Fry’s, and a local Latin Market that has a huge selection of fruits and vegetables. And for those days that I am too busy to the grocery store but still need a few things, I use INSTACART! (If you’re not familiar with Instacart, it is a grocery delivery service where you can order groceries from groceries stores and they will deliver them right to your house. But not only that, depending on where you live, you can also order from stores like CVS, Costco, PetCo, Safeway, Whole Foods and more! Instacart is available in many cities, you just have to do a quick google search and see. But the experience of grocery shopping is just as cool, because you get to pick out what you need by the click of a finger, and you can still read the food labels, the stores will recommend food items, and more. I rarely buy fruits and veggies online though because I like to feel and see the decadent peach or avocado in person. But things like breads, sauces, cereal, condiments, toilet paper, paper towels, and everything else are perfect to buy online through Instacart, and they bring it to your doorstep within an hour or two!
As a vegan family, we go through fruits and vegetables pretty quickly, so several trips to the grocery store are necessary. And with my love for grocery shopping and the convenience of online grocery shopping readily available, this seemingly mundane must-do errand has become one of my favorite pastimes! Am I seventy-five years old or nah?
Have a fabulous week Fabbies!