Saturday, July 25, 2015

Stocking up

Despite my longing to have a day where I sleep till I wake and then stay lazing in bed for another couple of hours or even the entire day, I did get up at a relatively reasonable hour this morning. Partly because I'd forgotten to turn off the alarm. Sigh. Anyway, I got up and then did go back to bed to read for a while but all the time, in the back of my head, was a little argument with myself going on about how I'd feel great if I'd just get up and do some cleaning and shopping versus how nice it would be to just laze. And at the same time planning out the order in which I'd need to do things if I did get up.

In the end I got up around quarter to eleven and immediately set to doing the hoovering. That also involved getting the recycling and the rubbish ready to go out the door, since underneath those bags seems to be one of those natural gathering places for crumbs. Once I had done that, I put a wash on, gathered a couple of Tupperware containers and was out the door.

Once I'd gotten rid of the rubbish and recycling the first stop had to be the market. I was paid yesterday so it's a new month with new money but I want to make sure that I stay in budget so had a list to stick to. And resisting temptation at the market is just as difficult as ever. I had some money left in my purse from "last" month and didn't want to spend anymore than that so I deliberately didn't go to the bank to get more cash. And, with a pain that was almost physical, I left behind all the gorgeous looking stuff that I really didn't need and managed to only buy one thing that wasn't on my list (as they didn't have one thing that was on the list, there was money for it). Then I popped over to the fair trade shop to get a couple of things there.
The lettuce is so fresh it's practically melt in your mouth, hmmm, can't wait for it

From the market:

  • Big head of organic oak leaf lettuce - €1.60
  • 2 organic courgettes (568g at €3/kg) - €1.70
  • Organic tomatoes (1kg at €6/kg) - €6.00
  • Organic chives - €1.50
  • Sunflower oil - €2.90
That lot left me with a bit less than €2 in change in my purse so I called into Drogerie Markt and bought a packet of washing soda for 95c. The rest of that change went into my sealed pot and so everything else comes out of this month's money.

From the fair trade shop:
  • Organic olive oil - €10.90
  • Organic chocolate - €2.30 (big increase. I haven't bought this for a while but it used to be €2.00)
  • Organic raw cacao powder - €4.80 (expensive for 250g but I want to try making some healthier sweet options, like these raw brownies from Deliciously Ella so hopefully this is a good investment)
Once I had gotten that expensive organic stuff out of the way, I wanted to get the most bang for my buck and that means heading to Aldi. I'm spoiled by having five supermarkets within a few minutes walk - Aldi and Edeka are the furthest away, being, oh, a good six minutes stroll around the corner. So, I did the sensible thing and stopped in home first, dumping my first bag of shopping in the hallway, tucked in beside the stairs. I love living in the kind of building where I can do that and leave something sitting for an hour or so and come back to find it exactly where I left it.

I had a list going into Aldi and a plan to not spend more than €20. In addition to the list, I also wanted to get one or two basics. If I do that every couple of weeks, I should be well stocked over the winter. My plan is to not need to spend any money on food during November or December, other than for my vegetable box delivery. And this is what I was able to get for €19.25 (yes, I did indeed traipse around Aldi adding up every single thing on the calculator on my phone).
There might have been one more banana in that bunch that didn't actually make it home with me - what a delicious breakfast though

From Aldi:
  • Organic low-fat milk - 99c
  • Flour - 32c
  • Tin of tuna in water - 99c
  • 1 jar green olives - 69c
  • 1 jar black olives - 69c
  • 1kg muesli - €1.49 (giving it a try as it was the same price as the Edeka one which I got last time and liked. This has a very similar ingredients list and was the only one with no sugar. There is a lot of dried fruit in it which will probably make it a bit too sweet to I'll add extra oats from time to time to lessen that a bit)
  • 1 carton passata - 39c
  • 1 tin whole tomatoes - 39c (costs 5c more to get the chopped ones, I can spend a fortune on organic and local foods but refuse to pay the extra to get chopped. Go figure.)
  • 1 tin kidney beans - 45c
  • 1 bunch organic, fair trade bananas - €1.20
  • 1 large packet fish fingers - €1.49
  • 2 small tubs of cream - 40c each
  • 1 tub of low-fat yoghurt - 45c
  • 1 tin sardines - 75c
  • 1 block of gouda cheese (at €4.99/kg) - €1.96
  • 1 block of parmesan (at €14.99/kg) - €2.88
  • 1 tub quark - 45c
  • 1 ball of organic mozzarella - 89c
  • 2 packets of 8 small wraps - 99c each (it's hard enough to get wraps here, unless you want to get the expensive Old El Paso ones so I was pleased to see these "special" items this week)
And so I just had a quick trip into Edeka to buy some totally non-frugal, non-healthy treats. And see if they had any of the elderflower and raspberry yoghurt that I like. They didn't.
That packet of Sensations might not mange to make it through the day
From Edeka:
  • Sensations Thai sweet chili crisps - €1.69
  • Riffels salted crisps - €1.99
  • Chips crackers - 99c
  • Large bag maltesers - €2.22
  • Chocolate raisins - €1.09
And half a loaf of bread from the bakery next door. I took €25 out of the bank on the way home, bought the bread (€1.59) and the rest is to do me for the week, including going to the quiz tomorrow evening. 

Of course, shopping is really the easy part. It's using the stuff up and letting nothing go to waste that's the real skill. To give myself the best chances of doing just that, some of the above was decanted into Tupperware immediately and stored in the freezer, fridge or storecupboard. Like so:

Salted crisps into the big white "Bellevue" Tupperware container. Gouda and parmesan cheese grated and into the freezer (popped the rind of the parmesan into the box, too, as I've read you can add that to soups/stews for a bit of extra flavour). The muesli went into a 1.7lt flip-top but since I still had some left over from the last time, it didn't quite fit. So the rest has gone into a small round one and I'll use that up first. The crackers have gone into a 600ml Hit-Parade (am probably going to have guests sometime this week so wanted to have something on hand just in case) and the maltesers and chocolate raisins into a 1lt Clarissa. That's in the fridge and, along with the nice fair trade chocolate, should be more than enough to satisfy any cravings for a couple of weeks. 

When all that was done, it was time for lunch and the lovely roasted sweet potatoes from yesterday that had been heating up were ready and waiting for me to dig in. And then, I have to admit, it was a bit of a struggle again to convince myself to put down the book and wash the floors. But I wanted to wash the floors before putting the second wash on so that I'd be able to wash the e-cloth, too. Took a while and I had almost convinced myself that hoovering had been enough. After all, I'd washed them last week and I do live alone, no messy kids or animals or anything and I do spend most of my days out so they wouldn't really need to be washed. Or do they? I took a picture to remind me in future when I'm having this argument with myself that washing the floors is a really, really good idea.
Okay. Hoovering is definitely not enough. This was the state of the water (and look at that cloth!) after washing the floors. 
Anyway, floors are done, bathroom has been cleaned, one wash is done and hung up to dry and the second is nearly finished. I do now have a few things to wash up (it never ends, does it?) and need to spend a bit of time cooking but apart from that, I'm calling the housework more or less done for this weekend. The basics are covered and I'm going back to my book.

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