Grocery shopping with kids who don’t want to be there can be agony. And we all know that it will take five times as long as if you had gone by yourself. It never fails that I get rattled and forget some things and end up buying other things because “it seemed like a good idea at the time.” Especially after the five-year-old put his sales spin on whatever it was and why we desperately need it…
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Over the last couple of years, I’ve come up with some pretty handy ideas that save me a lot of time at the grocery store. And they are easy to do, even if you have little ones with you.
Save Time Grocery Shopping By Going At The Right Time
I notice that so many days, we wouldn’t get out of the house to go to the grocery store before 11:30 or so. And here’s why that makes grocery shopping take longer. People are there to eat lunch or they are there on their lunch break to pick up a few things for dinner. Either way, between 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. is one of the busiest times at the grocery store. If you can, go first thing in the morning, say 8:30 or 9:00 a.m. You’ll have the whole place almost to yourself.
Save Time Grocery Shopping By Doing This With Your Grocery List
I’m not going to tell you to make a list, because…duh. But, if you want the list made FOR you…check out my real food meal plans. Otherwise, I’m going to assume you are starting with a list.
If you do this one thing, it will save you time. I promise. And it’s the beginning of the whole “system” that saves you time while you’re in the grocery store. As you keep your list and add to it, group the items by category or “department” in the store. So, meat, seafood, dairy, produce, deli, and grocery – which are typically the inner aisles – more about those later.
Also, if you go to more than one grocery store, you should keep a list like this for each store.
Your Kids Can Help You Save Time
No matter their age, kids can help you in the store. Depending on their age, you can either call it “helping” or “being distracted.” So older children can get you a bag of apples while you grab some other produce. Younger children can help you count the apples or keep track of everything in your cart that is a certain color. Anything to distract them. So they don’t distract you!
Save Time By Going In The Right Direction
This is a trick that I recently figured out. When I walk into my local grocery store, I’m in the produce section. So if I were to follow the logical path around the store, I would go from produce to meat, cheese, eggs, milk, and wine. Typically, I’m able to avoid the middle aisles – more on how I do that later. If I follow this path, all of my delicate or squashable produce would be on the bottom to get covered up by meat and milk. Not good. So I would end up rearranging my cart every time I wanted to add something heavier on top.
But following this “logical” path gets all of my delicate or squashable produce on the bottom of my cart covered up by meat and milk and wine. Not good. So I would end up rearranging my cart every time I wanted to add something heavier on top.
It dawned on me that if I go backward – ie: to get my wine, milk, and then meat first – I can lay all my produce right on top without taking the time to rearrange a thing! I typically just keep the eggs in the seat until I can put them on the very top.
Save Time By Unloading In the Right Order
Now, it’s really easy to unload all of your produce first. That way, it all gets bagged together and makes it super fast to unload in your kitchen. Everything there is going to the refrigerator or right onto your counter. Your next layer will likely be your dairy and eggs; again, they are all going to the same place in the refrigerator and saving you time. Ditto for wine and eggs.
Save Time Grocery Shopping By Only Shopping The Store Perimeter
So, you may have already heard about Thrive Market. But let me tell you, I was reluctant to try it. Now I’m so glad that I did!!
I’ll be honest, one reason that it took me a while to try Thrive was that I like saving time at my local market by NEVER having to check labels for GMO’s because they don’t carry any. I also like that my local market maximizes the number of Certified Organic products that it carries.
Once I discovered that Thrive Market carries NO products containing GMO’s and that they, too, maximize the number of Certified Organic products that they carry, I was all in.
So here’s the deal. Let’s pretend Costco and Whole Foods got married and had a baby, Thrive Market is that baby! Natural, healthy, organic products….wait for it…at WHOLESALE prices!
All you need to do to activate your 30-day FREE trial membership is place an order. After 30 days, you determine whether you want to cancel or not. No questions asked; no hassle. And shipping on all orders over $49 is completely FREE!
If you choose to continue your membership, you pay just $59.99 per year and most customers make that up within at least two orders. (I made my membership up with my first order!) In fact, if you don’t make your membership fee up within the first year, Thrive Market will credit your account the difference when you renew! And if you want to feel even better about your membership, for every membership, Thrive Market donates a membership to a family in need!
So that sounds great and all, but how does Thrive Market help me save time grocery shopping? I knew you would ask. So here’s the deal. By ordering most of the “grocery” department items I need from Thrive Market – canned, jared and dry goods, I avoid all the middle aisles of my local store altogether. So when I go to my local market, I almost exclusively shop the perimeter of the store cutting my shopping time almost in half!
I hope that these tips help you save time grocery shopping just like they have for me! Let me know your favorite tip for saving time grocery shopping!