Grocery Strike – Refusing to buy new groceries for an allotted period of time, thereby committing to use up what is on hand.
Last week, I swung open the fridge door, saw half a carton of eggs, some milk, condiments, and a few containers with leftovers. It had been WELL over a week since I bought groceries. So, I made the decision to go grocery shopping.
Problem was, our grocery envelope was empty (we use the cash envelope system). Payday was five days away.
Suddenly a new thought popped into my head.
I swung open the freezer door. Then I punched in my husband Dontae’s cell phone number.
“Hey, so we’re almost out of food and over budget. How would you like to just eat up what we have on hand until payday? We’ve got food in the freezer and pantry.”
Dontae paused. “Um…alright?”
It’s how felt too. Everything about the idea ended with a question mark.
BUT it was wildly successful! And, let’s be honest, it was only for four days (12 meals). But I learned a bunch and I’m going to share it with you!
What I learned from our grocery strike
- Saying “No” is easier once you are committed: I was bummed that our entire stockpile of fresh fruit and veggies consisted of two aging bananas. But we knew we were saving money – that’s a powerful incentive. I made do with what we had. For example: Aging bananas became banana bread.
- Creativity makes it fun: When meals came, it was like putting a puzzle together. I’d start with a base (like rice, tortillas or noodles), then select a canned or frozen veggie. I’d assess what protein to use (meat, beans, eggs). Adding seasonings and sauces helped a lot too. For example: One night we came up with a sweet & sour chicken dinner using our toddler’s Mickey Mouse chicken nuggets.
- A new sense of gratitude: On payday, I went shopping. I bought fresh fruit, veggies, cereal, yogurt, milk, deli meat, canned goods, frozen goods and CHICKEN. After stuffing our new groceries into our bare bones refrigerator, I was overwhelmed, OVERWHELMED with gratitude. We have so much to be thankful for.
I CHALLENGE YOU TO DO A GROCERY STRIKE:
- Step #1: Swing open your fridge door. Inspect your pantry. Bump your “grocery run” back 3 days. HOT RESOURCE: Go to MyFridgeFood.com. Select what food is in the your kitchen. It will generate a list of recipe ideas for you!
- Step #2: Document your progress. Follow my Facebook page here, then snap a picture of your dinner and put it on my wall. Add the hashtag #grocerystrike so we can see your progress and cheer you on. I’d LOVE to see what you come up with. Plus, you will inspire others to try this money-saving technique, too.
Join the discussion: If you initiated a grocery strike TODAY, what would you cook for dinner tonight?