Hi. Can we talk about groceries for a minute? I know, BOring, but the alternative at the moment is discussing the yoga class I went to last night and whether or not you think anyone noticed my heels, which are in dire need of getting up close and personal with a pumice stone. I mean, do you think I was screwing up anyone’s savasana or anything because they were haunted by the vision of my scratchy dry FEET? It has been bothering me, this possibility.

So, groceries? Okay then! Here is a sampling of some of the things I buy, which I have copied and pasted from Amazon’s grocery service receipt thingie rather than laboriously re-typing by hand:

Fuji Apple, 1 Large Apple: $0.79
Cucumber, 1 Medium Cucumber: $0.69
Baby Bok Choy, 12 oz Package: $2.19
Broccoli, Organic, 1 Bunch: $1.99    
Oscar Mayer Deli Fresh Meats Turkey Breast, Oven Roasted , 9 oz:  $4.12  
Jif Peanut Butter, Creamy, 28 oz: $4.77  
Diet Coke Soda, 6pk, .5 ltr Bottles: $3.08
Isomil Advance Soy Formula with Iron, Powder, 12.9 oz:  $17.99  
Wildwood, High Protein Tofu, Super Firm, 10 oz: $1.94
Alessi Chunky Marinara Sauce, 24 oz: $5.50
Oscar Mayer Oven Roasted Chicken Breast Cuts, 6 oz: $2.88
Chiquita Banana, 1 Ripe Banana:  $0.29
Horizon Organics Mozzarella Cheese Sticks: $4.29
Ziploc Storage, Gallon, 40 Count: $4.29          
Huggies Baby Wipe Refill Natural scent, 160ct: $6.82
Organic Valley Low fat 1% Ultra Pasteurized Milk, Half Gallon:  $3.99  
Rosarita Refried Beans, Traditional, No Fat, 16 oz:  $1.82  
Honey Bunches Of Oats With Almonds, 14.5 oz:  $3.96
Yoplait Light Non-Fat Yogurt, White Chocolate Strawberry, 6 oz: $0.69
Pampers Cruisers, 40 ct:   $18.48
Pampers Swaddlers, 44 ct:  $12.67  

Can you tell me, does that seem like an extravagant list? Because it’s a fairly typical assortment and I swear I cannot believe how much our monthly grocery bills are getting to be. I don’t think Amazon is more expensive than our local store or anything, although maybe I should actually check and see. I’m just looking at our checkbook today thinking that from one perceptive, jesus, that’s a LOT of freelancing that’s going towards . . . what, FOOD? Food that we have to constantly replace? I AM DOING SOMETHING WRONG.

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norm
norm
14 years ago

Oh, you think it’s bad now? Wait until they start really eating.

squandra
squandra
14 years ago

Whoa, first, maybe.

It seems okay to me, but I would imagine that formula, diapers, etc adds up fast.

Christina
14 years ago

God I know! I cook a lot, and from new recipes at least 4 times per week but still, we send an unholy amount on food. It is sad. Add the diapers and wipes, woe is me.

warcrygirl
14 years ago

Right now I’m trying to figure out how much we spend on groceries. I’m thinking it’s around the $500/mo mark and that’s with a 9 and 6 year old. Food is going to go up simply because of the price of gas. The only extravagance I see is the ‘organic’ stuff (I mean, how can you be sure it’s really organic????) otherwise your list looks normal.

Amy M.
Amy M.
14 years ago

Wow – aren’t you guys healthy! Where’s the giant bag of Fritos? *ahem* Actually, I live in the Midwest, so I don’t know about your grocery store prices, but some of the stuff, particularly when there are sales, is cheaper at our grocery stores.

Also, we get our produce from a CSA (community supported agriculture). You give $ to the farm & get a box of fresh fruit & veggies every week. It can be pricey, but some health insurance companies will pay for part of it (ours gives $200), so it can be cheaper in the long run…

Kim
Kim
14 years ago

Grocery prices are going up at a scary rate. In our house it’s just me and the husband and our average weekly bill has gone from around $80 to a little over $100 in the past year or so. And it’s not like I’m buying foufy gourmet food – we’re talking meat, veggies, starch, beverages and some snack stuff. And coupons don’t alleviate it very much. And if you watch the news, it seems like it’s only going to get worse.

Pete
Pete
14 years ago

Oy vey you are charged a lot at Amazon. I do most of my shopping at Costco and their prices are MUCH lower. You buy ‘a’ banana and ‘a’ apple at a time?

samantha jo campen
14 years ago

Seems okay to me. But I think it’s like when we go to Trader Joes and buy $100 worth of stuff. Then we get home and have nothing to eat. WTF?

I’ve been thinking about using Amazon or Peapod. But if your list is considered expensive, then maybe I’ll take a pass.

Cathy
14 years ago

Just passing through, but you’ve got $56 stuff going towards baby i/o. (diapers, wipes, formula) Once everyone’s eating big people food and using the potty it should get a lot better. Try subtracting the $56 out and see if your grocery bill is closer to normal.

Mama Ritchie
Mama Ritchie
14 years ago

Hey chickie! I hear you about the grocery thing. I actually started going to different grocery stores around here to see if I could figure out the cheapest one. Bread sucks. Almost 5 bucks down here. I just bought the store brand for 2 bucks, but I bet you the 3 dollar difference that Charlie turns his tiny discriminating nose up at it. If I haven’t mentioned, Dylan is perfect, Riley looks so happy, and you guys did a fantastic job with that transition. Did you see Polly? Dylan’s future girlfriend, I’m telling you!

Naomi the Strange
14 years ago

I don’t know if you’ve been paying attention to the news, but there’s a FOOD CRISIS going on right now. Food prices are rising because fo the oil prices rising. There are food riots going on in Haiti. Be glad that we have food that we can afford here. Sure, the food prices are rising, we are in a recession after all… that’s usually what happens…

sooboo
14 years ago

Your prices seem like regular grocery store prices, which are going up at an alarming rate. TJ’s and Fresh and Easy (don’t know if you have these stores up there) are slightly cheaper, as is the farmers market. So, lately I’ve been making like two or three stops a week to buy groceries. Am I actually saving money after gas and time spent??

biscuit
biscuit
14 years ago

You could save money by choosing generic dipes + wipes + cut back or lose the organic products. I’ve found that White Cloud dipes by Wal Mart work super well (even over night) + to top it off they feature John Lennon Real Love designs (totally matches my nursery) which blow the tacky Sesame St + Disney crap outta the water! Parent’s Choice cloth wipes are slammin’ too, also a Wally World brand.

Check sale prices online before you hit the stores + check Google for coupons for the items you need. IE: I think Amazon is steep, yo!

Megan
Megan
14 years ago

You forgot to include what I personally consider the biggest rip off ever! FORMULA. My baby is only on half formula (half breastmilk) and I think we go through a $30 can every 2 weeks. Soooo expensive!

Andrea
14 years ago

I looked at our online spending report a couple months ago and nearly fell over when I saw what we were spending on groceries every month for two people! As annoying as it is, I’m now shopping sales and Costco which has helped the budget significantly. Good luck.

Megan
Megan
14 years ago

Oh now I see your high priced formula….Still it just peeves me! I buy Costco diapers and wipes but honestly I only save a few bucks each time, so I don’t know if it justifys the cost of the membership.

E
E
14 years ago

Well, I don’t want to seem like a know-it-all here, but you are getting ripped off. All of the non-grocery items are significantly cheaper at WalMart or Target (seriously, the ziplocks should be $2.00), and the produce seems waaaay overpriced to me. I live in San Diego, which is an expensive market, but I am crazy insane about saving money (my hub and I are grad students and we have a 5 mo old). The sandwich meat and milk seem high, too. Groceries ARE getting more expensive, and with two kiddos it might be worth the premium you pay to get them delivered (I dream of being able to afford grocery delivery!). You definitely pay a lot more for organic, too.

Naomi the Strange
14 years ago

It’s good that you’re buying organic, and hell yes that is expensive. But it’s better to buy organic for the health of yourself and your family. I tend to shop at many different stores, too. I don’t own a car, I use ZipCar, so I’m not spending extra money on gas, etc. I usually go to Costco, Trader Joes and Farmer’s Market every couple of weeks, and I only buy organic. It’s just me and my partners and our combined income is pretty high for two people, so I suppose we can afford it… but yeah, kid costs skyrocket all of your expenditures… right?

Amber
14 years ago

Your list is certainly not extravagant – I’m lucky to leave the grocery store every week for under $150 – and all 4 people in my house eat regular food and are potty trained! I think we suffer because we choose to buy organic, which is more expensive.

I think you’re doing just fine and not being overcharged. Then again you could be suffering from lack of grocery shopping prowess because you were spanked as a child, and since I was as well, we’re both delusional when it comes to shopping for food. Ha. Ha ha. : )

banana
14 years ago

Food costs are getting outrageous. There are only 2 of us in our household and we spend an ungodly amount at the grocery store. The monthly bill has more than doubled in the last three years.

Mandy
Mandy
14 years ago

I was thinking the same thing when I spent $81.15 at WinCo last night, on barely a week’s worth of groceries for hubby and myself. WTF? Our bill used to be literally half that amount, for more food. Prices are getting ridiculous, no matter where you shop. Fear not, you’d spend the same on your stuff at a supermarket, plus you’d have to use gas, wrangle the munchkins into a cart, and carve a bigger chunk of time out of your day. I’d say you’re coming out ahead with Amazon.

SpaceCase
14 years ago

Considering the gas prices these days, running around town trying to save a few bucks here and there may end up costing more in the long run. Nothing here really looks that extravagant to me, especially since it’s being delivered. When you add up the time saved with the online orderin, and the gas saved, I’m wondering if it all comes out even (or even ahead). Just a thought.

Paula
Paula
14 years ago

I live in NY and use Peapod. Your pricing looks average (or cheaper) to me as far as non-baby items. (My “babies” are 16 and 19.)

Lisa
Lisa
14 years ago

ok, weird…that could be MY shopping list…we eat/purchase freakishly similar things. i have to say, i think you are definitely overpaying with Amazon.
i shop at several local chain and independant grocery stores here in Southern California (**DISCLAIMER: i also am a stay-at-home mom with only one toddler, so i have time to go to three or four different stores in the course of a week to complete my full list**) and i know i pay about .33 cents a can for my refried beans- there’s always a 3 for a dollar or some deal going on, $2.00 or less for a six pack of diet coke (it’s almost always on sale somewhere), bananas are typically about .19 cents each, etc…so i think that you would pay less for the actual groceries if you shopped the brick-and-mortar place, but the convenience is what you’re paying for, so really, it probably evens out in the long run. just an aside, we finally made a grocery “budget” for our little family of 3 – it’s $500.00 a month and it is ALWAYS a stretch to stick to it.

Sarah Lena
14 years ago

Someone already mentioned the C word (COSTCO), which is my family’s saving grace.. and our curse, if we’re not careful. We save TONS on diapers, wipes, and non-perishables. (They also have a great store brand formula that’s a fabulous deal.) That way, when you visit the store (or Amazon), you really only have to focus on food.

Betsy
14 years ago

You can save a lot of money buying many of those items at Target. All of the non-food items are significantly cheaper there, and some of the food is, too. You will not believe how much cheaper, for example, cereal is.

Heather
Heather
14 years ago

I have been trying to figure out what I’m doing wrong. There are two people in my house. TWO. I go to the Walmart grocery store every Friday, and rarely spend less than $200- a week! I swear every Friday, I am only going to get a few things, and those few things end up towering in the cart. I do not buy exotic items, we eat really easy stouffer one skillet meals, that cost around $5 (easy to throw on after work). I just don’t get it.

ML
ML
14 years ago

I so feel your pain! We live just up north of you and gas alone! – we’ve been almost at $4 a gallon for weeks now. But groceries…I soometimes wonder is it a west coast thing? It’s killing us. I want to do organic milk (and meats) (because I would rather my daughter not have boobs at eight years old, please)and it’s 5.69 a gallon unless I hunt for sales and freeze it! Food is our second biggest outlay and it’s not like we are eating filet mignon. It’s frightening. (And I shop at Costco every two weeks.)

Kizz
14 years ago

We buy none of the same items (really NONE, how odd is that?) but your broccoli is cheaper than my cauliflower and your cereal is cheaper than mine. Cereal here is over $4 a box. I hate that. Eating healthy (weight watchers) is freaking expensive. Oh and I order from a company called Fresh Direct that delivers in NYC.

Nolita
14 years ago

Don’t have the Amazon Grocery service available here in Norman, OK, but I did do the Amazon Subscribe and Save option buying a few things in bulk like laundry detergent, fabric softener, canned tomatoes & artichokes. I was very pleased with those savings! I don’t pay shipping and have that stuff auto-shipped at 1-2-3-6 mos intervals and it gets me 15% discount. I LOVE saving money and having some of my groceries waiting for me when I get home from work.
I hope someday soon I can have other grocery goodies delivered. You should check out the Subscribe and Save option for the wipes and dipes, etc…

kristylynne
kristylynne
14 years ago

I have one word for you: COSTCO.

Or Sam’s Club, if that’s closer.

I buy almost everything at Costco, and I swear to God, their prices rock. Yes, I do drop $250 each time I go, but I only go maybe every three weeks and buy almost all my groceries there. I go to the regular grocery store maybe once a month now, for the few things I can’t find at Costco. They also have deals on tons of other handy things, like coffeemakers, clothes, autmotive junk, tools. Watch out, your husband may get all excited and decide he needs a $380 pressure washer (mine did).

Also if you join Costco, you can get the Executive Membership for $100. The regular membership is $50, but with the Executive one you get a percentage of your purchases back as store credit. Last year our membership ended up costing only $30 after the refund, this year I think we’ll MAKE money.

Average Jane
14 years ago

It’s not just you – I’ve noticed my grocery bills are getting ridiculously high. With all of the news of shortages of staples, I’m thinking of buying some gigantic, Costo bags of flour, rice, etc. just in case…

kristylynne
kristylynne
14 years ago

Forgot to mention, Costco has tons of ORganic stuff, including Annie’s mac and cheese, milk, fruit. And great house-brand diapers.

Jennifer
14 years ago

I don’t know if you have one near you, but I’ve saved a ton by shopping at WinCo instead of Albertsons. Our bill went from $150 to $100 per week.

Elizabeth
Elizabeth
14 years ago

There is certainly something to be said for buying off-brand items. And I don’t know about your local WalMart’s prices, but you can buy a larger package of diapers for less than you’re paying for the 40-count. And the Costco/Sam’s Club prices for formula are really great. We saved a ton of money buying my son’s formula from Sam’s Club.

Holly
14 years ago

I consider myself to be something of a grocery ninja, but even my bills have been going up. I totally agree w/ everyone who has said to buy non grocery items at Target or a drugstore . . . tons of savings there. Also, are farmers markets an option for you? I go to one every Thursday on my lunch hour from work and spend about $10 on veggies, which ends up cutting my grocery bill for the week in half (I do buy an abnormal number of vegetables though, i suppose).

Emily
14 years ago

Uhhhh yeah. I shop at Trader Joe’s, exalted for low prices (and dangerously ripe cheese), but notice even there, my grocery dollars are now more like grocery nickels. Makes me want to go off the grid and grow my own asparagus.

lisa-marie
14 years ago

The list is not extravagant, no, just the price of food and necessities nowadays. you might try buying store brand peanut butter, storage bags, cola and refried beans to save a little money. Store brands taste/work just as good as the fancy-pants stuff.

Melissa
14 years ago

You can save a lot on diapers by signing up for Amazon’s Subscribe and Save auto-ship program – that’s how I can afford to use the Seventh Generation disposables! Amazon also sells your formula by the case; my very rough estimate had you saving over $30 if you buy six double-size cans at once rather than one regular size can. It adds up. If you’re already ordering through Amazon it doesn’t make any sense financially to get 40 diapers at a time when you could order three times that many and save money. SnS here: http://www.amazon.com/b/ref=amb_link_6331352_1?ie=UTF8&node=251482011&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_s=auto-sparkle&pf_rd_r=1Q3RVWFH5BGDTWCP51Y0&pf_rd_t=301&pf_rd_p=363100301&pf_rd_i=subscribe

Trader Joe’s regular milk doesn’t have rBST in it and it’s half the price of organic.

We belong to Costco, too, and I thought we’d impulse shop but we don’t. It’s hard to impulse shop when you have to buy, say, eight boxes of mac and cheese instead of one. You could really save on the Ziplocs, for instance, and yeah, their diapers are great.

Kirsten
14 years ago

My toddler used Costco formula forever, seriously $20 for 2 large cans. Rad.

I shop at Winco and buy many similar things to you, but it is dirt cheap compared to Fred Meyers or Safeway and I can find many organic items too.

I have been trying to save by not having meat every night and making things when I can (homemade vs. canned soup)

ellen
ellen
14 years ago

Funny, I NEVER paid attention to grocery prices until now, but have just started to, baby #2 is coming and we’re about to have that huge formula bill again. Also, Target is pretty cheap for food too, even if it’s not a Supertarget. My husband eats a box of cereal every 2 days I swear and Target generic is much better than most crap generic cereal.

b.
b.
14 years ago

Someone already beat me to it, but shopping at those giant warehouse places (Costco’s, Sam’s Club, BJ’s, etc) really makes a big difference in the bottom line. We live on the East Coast, Mass to be exact, where prices were already higher than average and now are completely outrageous. Shopping at a warehouse and buying in bulk is what saves us on a monthly basis (we have a six year old and a freshly minted three year old). Yes, you might come home with a GIANT VAT OF PICKLES (or whatever rocks your boat) but you won’t have to buy pickles for a long time. We buy the GIANT VATS for items that the kids, in particular, are likely to blow right through. Including PICKLES, which they like to eat as if it were candy.

jonniker
14 years ago

God yes. I mean, we’re ONLY TWO PEOPLE and we eat at home most nights with the simplest of meals and yet … oh my hell, how did our bill come to $97 for like, three days’ worth of food? On NOTHING EXCITING OR EXTRAVAGANT. I do not buy carloads of imported smoked oysters and I am not buying goat cheese shipped from the Swiss Alps. I even buy some GENERIC ITEMS. So why, I ask you, does my meager grocery order of chicken and vegetables come to almost $100?

Beth
Beth
14 years ago

Get thee to a Sam’s Club! I know, Wal-Mart is the devil…but you literally cannot beat their diapers & wipes. The Swaddlers are $39/box of 250, and wipes are $14/case of 720. I know it’s a pain to go…but those prices are worth it!

emily
emily
14 years ago

I don’t think that your list is extravagant at all. However, I do think you can do better. As long as you aren’t wasting tons of gas, shopping at several stores saves me tons of money and I just recently started clipping coupons. I generally have between $7-$10 worth of coupons each week (yes, it’s a pain). Also, we buy diapers, wipes, TP, and some staples at Costco and it saves us lots.

I only started doing all of this in the last 6 months or so because I work in the commodity/agriculture business and the future doesn’t look bright. Gas prices, as we all know, are high which raises the cost of food at each landing point (try to buy local). The US dollar is falling which allows foreign countries to buy cheaper US goods so we are exporting more, creating a higher demand and higher demand equals smaller supply which equals higher prices. What we do import (such as spices and pesticides/fertilizers) are extremely expensive because of the small US dollar (also think the farther something travels the more fuel it uses which equals higher cost). US farmers are not planting their crops because they can’t count on a workforce to pick them and they can’t compete with imports. Biofuels are causing corn prices to skyrocket, which means that feed prices are rising, every animal’s meat that eats that feed is rising, not to mention the breading that may be on that meat.

Sorry to be such a Debbie Downer.

I also have to say that I put high importance on quality of life and when I have my second child in October (currently have a 2 y/o), our grocery bills will go up because I will not be the smart shopper I am right now. When I get my sanity back (at least somewhat) I’ll go back to this crazy game.

Melis
Melis
14 years ago

I’m across the country on the East Coast and I’m sorry to say but you are spending a fortune on your groceries. Wow! It may be the difference of location, but I couldn’t believe your cost on things. No wonder you freaked out over the bill.
I’ve started using diapers.com for all my baby stuff. They offer free shipping on orders of $49+. It’s next day service which is a lifesaver. It balances out to be about the same cost as walmart or target, but much more convenient.
I agree with the others that you should check into a Costco membership. You will save money. I promise.
There are also a TON of coupon services on the web that can additionally save you loads of money. My last grocery bill was $348, but after the store card and my coupons were entered my total was $293. I saved over $50 just using coupons and shopping the store sales!! I was shocked. It was the most I had ever saved at one time. It definitely made the extra time printing coupons worth while.
Anyway, whatever you do, good luck.

Chaya
Chaya
14 years ago

I know, the cost of groceries kills me, even when I’ve made an effort not to buy many processed foods.

Have you tried using Diapers.com? I would suggest stocking up on non-perishables if you can find a sale price (Costco’s prices might be cheaper, I don’t know); I grab as many packs of diapers as I can when I see a sale, since my son is going to be in the same size for a while. Which means I have years of changing diapers ahead of me, o joy. You might also find that you can use store brand diapers part or all of the time (during the day, for example).

The only other tip I can offer is to eat oatmeal in place of cereal, since it’s cheaper, although it sure is lacking in any kind of crunch.

Beth
Beth
14 years ago

Oh I forgot to add- that price is for the Huggies wipes, exactly what’s on your Amazon list. Love them!

Kirsten
Kirsten
14 years ago

you seriously need to buy at costCo, Sams, or other place iwht bulk and cheaper formula, diapers, etc.

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