Well I think I've mentioned it in passing. We've talked about it. But I thought that I would finally write and tell you all about our monthly shopping trip.
We started this at the beginning of the year. When food prices were jumping and that horrid business of that gross pink stuff being in your ground beef came up.
There had to be a better way.
Just had to Jerry. Just had to.
We are HUGE proponents of shopping local. We love it. We live it. We try our best. But we live in a big city. One where fresh food doesn't just jump out at us. Sure we have Farmer's Markets but not a lot of people hacking up cows for us to buy.
So we decided to visit the Amish. Or the Amo's as I like to call them :)
Please understand that this is not a "run out and grab something" kind of trip. For us, this is an all day trip. One that means we are driving a lot. We try to make the most of it...meaning we do our best to arrange our shopping on a day when Nick's mom can take the kids. It's just a lot of shopping for them. What kid wants to go grocery shopping? Let alone a trip where you are shopping for nothing but groceries at several stores that require a lot of driving.
I've had people ask me this so I think it's only right...we do go shopping other times. But we do this shopping at the beginning of the month (or preferably at the end of the previous month) so we're ready to rock and roll. In this shopping trip we are getting the main portion of our groceries. Think frozen foods, meats and cheeses that can be put in the freezer, canned goods, and cleaning supplies. We also buy some produce but just for the week we are in. Every week we still run out and spend about $20.00 on fresh fruits and veggies, milk, and oj. But this monthly shopping makes things so much cheaper and easier. I can somewhat plan for a month of cooking based on what is in my freezer. And it is so easy to break out the stand mixer and make something with the kiddos on a rainy day if I know I have a huge stash of baking supplies ready and waiting.
So onto our trip...
The first store we always go to is Rentown. Sorry I forgot to take pictures. It's between Bremen and Nappanee if you need to get there. There are signs...drive around and I'm sure you'll find it :)
They have cheese and other products but the thing we go there for the most is cheese. Is it worth it you ask? Well, here's my thinking. They usually have at least 2 or 3 cheeses on sale for 1.99 per pound. That's cheaper than the kraft bags you buy and those are 8 ounces if you are lucky! So trust me on this, it is worth it. Things I also like to buy there are brown eggs (usually on sale for .99 a dozen), butter (1.99 a pound), peanut butter (10.00 for 6 pounds). Nick really likes their ham salad and german bologna if you are lost in everything that they have to offer. They also sell Lehman's mints that are our FAVORITE!!! and they are a pretty good price. In these stores you have to look at EVERYTHING!!! They are always changing prices. Sometimes you'll get a good deal here on one thing...other times it's best to just let it go. Also, they have mixes of all kinds of stuff. While I've never tried too many of them, I do get their cake donut and raised donut mixes. My one key tip is to get the pamphlet on the shelf with it about how to use it. Otherwise it's a little hard to figure out!
We usually grab a soda and a snack and then settle in for our drive to...
Here's my husband filling up our cartons. They have honey and other things too. I love this because it so exemplifies a Proverb's 31 woman. This sweet amish woman is selling eggs and honey on the side to help her family. How awesome!
And this has nothing to do with anything except that I'm still trying to figure out the new camera...eek! Boy do I love this man! So glad I get to be his girlfriend. He's so cute! He'd look super tough if he could ever manage to not have a little smirk on those big lips :)
So there it is. If you have any questions I didn't answer, feel free to ask! I'd love to help with whatever you need :)