the simple minded suburbanite

Whooo Knew?
November 2, 2009, 4:11 am
Filed under: budget, suburban, voluntary simplicity | Tags: ,

Nobody.  That’s right.  Not a single ghost, ghoul, or scantily dressed witch could tell that all of our Halloween candy was purchased at Aldi (!  I’m not kidding.  I am in Halloween heaven.  And if you have never heard of this store or if you drive right past it because it’s in a not-so-great stretch of Route whatever-whatever…STOP!  Don’t pass it by.  Not only was I forced to use my own green bags, but I saved money like crazy!!  I’m talking, I bought a gallon of apple cider (for our annual Capt Morgan’s spiked adult treat) for $2.99 a gallon compared to the grocery store’s nearly $5/gal, but I got all of my candy for about $30…compared to other years where I’ve spent $50-$75 (we’ve got a huge neighborhood).

It’s one of my favorite finds/refinds.  I remember growing up in the midwest when my mom would drag my brother and I to an Aldi nearly 45mins a way to stock up on canned goods and gross tasting potato chips.  Now, I’ve got to say, alot has changed at Aldi, but alot hasn’t.  It is still bare bones atmosphere, you still have to bring your own bags (today, though, it’s cool), carts are “rented” by inserted a quarter and then getting that 25 cents back once you return the cart, and the cashiers are still wicked fast.  But, today, Aldi carries a fair amount of fresh produce, meat and dairy along with a great healthy line called Fit and Active, which includes whole grain pasta, granola bars, yogurt, etc…  Aldi now accepts debit cards.

I’ve been going for over a year and I tell you, this is what groceries are supposed to cost.  The way I work it is, I go once every month to six weeks and stock up on products my family likes: cereals, pasta, snack for the kids, nuts (soooo cheap), some wine, paper goods, and I throw some fresh produce and dairy for the week.  I spend about $150 for a HEAPING cartfull of groceries.  I then shop at the local grocery and Trader Joes for fresh meat, menu items, and specialty items the rest of the month and I think I save about 30% off my grocery bill.  There are off brands and name brands and my kids like most things I get from there…but, for the price, I always bring back a new item or two for them to taste test.  And, may I add, that one of my friends who is a wine snob LOVED the Crianza I bought there for $5.99!

It’s a 20min drive but well worth it for me and my busy little family.  I’m happy to share my little gem of a secret with anyone who’s interested in saving a little dough.

Happy Halloween!


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