Monday, March 21, 2005

Big savings!

As a keeper of my home with five adorable kids and one fabulous hubby, I have an obsession simmering inside me that leads to daydreaming about ways to save oodles of money at the grocery store. I have tried many different modes of budgeting in the past, but I think my latest endeavor-once a month shopping at Sam's Club- just might be the mother of them all!

Sam's Club is about size. Big, large, huge and way-too-much, are the only sizes they carry, while everything average or normal needs to be purchased elsewhere.

My first stop at Sam's was dairy products. Adding five-dozen eggs and shoebox-size block of cheddar cheese to my cart had me pondering new ways to make omelets, quiches and breakfast burritos, all the while imagining the smiling faces of my brood. One benefit of the enormous block of cheese are the arm muscles I will develop while grating it. I am already looking forward to bathing suit season!

Next stop: meat. If you have a large family, you already know the thrill of finding meat at low, low prices. So believe me, ladies, when I say that my heart was a poundin' when I laid my eyes on the 10 pound chub of hamburger meat that, when stood on it's end, was taller than my three year old daughter! Of course, for $15.00 this was a best buy. For some unknown reason, my sixteen year old daughter asked me, with eyebrows furrowed, "You're not buying that, are you?" Maybe someday when she has a home of her own to tend to, she will understand.

Among my other purchases is a six year supply of Italian seasoning, enough Ziploc bags to package a side of beef and enough toilet paper to take care of a small church congregation.

A problem presented itself after returning home with my purchases: where does one put all this stuff? If you have a extra bedroom you can turn into a pantry, I highly recommend this shopping method to you. If you are like me, you will need to be more creative. So far we are using some of the bigger boxed goods as extra seating in the family room, while the rest of it is creatively stored in the kitchen pantry and under beds.

One word of caution, ladies. Don't take your hubby on these shopping adventures. A man's habit of sneaking extras into the shopping cart will add up quickly at the cash register, when the extras are one gallon jars of marinated mushrooms and packages of 42 Snickers bars. If you feel incapable of pushing the minimum of two carts by yourself, taking one of your kids or a trusted friend is a possible solution.

Happy shopping, ladies!!!