Having moved off-campus, I've had to set foot in a grocery store for the first time in months. I am spending Christmas with my family, which means we buy whole wheat bread instead of white bread, but I enjoy wandering around with a shopping cart even if it isn't half-full of boxes of Poptarts. I've compiled here both Chris's and Benjamin's ways of shopping.
First of all, when pushing a cart, it's all about maneuverability. It's a beautiful thing to make a sharp turn between two coolers of frozen dinners without scraping either one. I like to look for deals while keeping meals in mind. Pre-cooked lasagna on sale? Go for it. The time in-between meager serving sizes can easily be filled with snacks, so a jar of peanut butter and something to spread it on is also in order. Potato chips are finished far too quickly to make them worth the purchase. Lastly, I take a look at that one stand of gift cards near the checkout-- not that I ever buy gift cards, but there's something I really like about looking at a piece of plastic that can be used to buy a meal for four at Applebee's. Now that we're on the subject, money is pretty subjective, isn't it?
Is cheese on the list? No? Might as well go by the dairy isle anyways. Just looking at all the different types of fancy cheese available makes me feel more cultured. Maybe someday I'll buy a block of brie. And some saltines. When I get down to the actual purchasing, scratch ingredients are where it's at. I could buy a medium-sized pizza for five dollars, but if I get a bag of flour and some tomato sauce, I can make my own pizza for so much less. Potatoes, onions, and pasta... so many ounces of nourishment for so few dollar bills. Snacks? How about some oats, or a can of Spam? On the way out, I pass by the deli, just to remind myself that there is fancy food out there. There will come a day when I buy a sandwich at a grocery store, but it is not this day.