This is how I make a grocery list without making a grocery list. It’s kind of like taking my kitchen to the store with me…
Have you ever been at the grocery store and wished you had looked in your fridge first to check on your bottle of ketchup? Do you see a sale on pickles but can’t remember if you are already stocked up for the next three years worth of picnics?
The most recent time I was heading out of town to do a great big Sam’s run, I started to write down everything I wanted to be sure to pick up. But with babies underfoot I really didn’t have an opportunity, so I decided to try this instead…
How I Make a Grocery List (Without Making a Grocery List)
I took quick pictures on my phone.
I know what goes where on my shelves. I know what a full pantry and freezer are supposed to look like for our family. So instead of taking pen and paper into the store, I had these pictures to reference! Then I could see what was missing on my shelves.
Did I need canned beans in any form? No I did not. But was my fruit shelf almost empty? Indeed. Was I almost out of corn and olives? Yep. Did I have to question these things when walking down the canned food aisles? Nope. There’s the picture I took that morning!
Freezer number one shows that I have pasta on the top shelf (yes, I keep it in the freezer because we have mice issues if I don’t store things well.) I’m good on pasta. The second shelf shows that we are getting low on frozen pizza but I prefer buying those at Costco, and today I am going to Sam’s. We’ll make do, ha. The third shelf shows just one package of chicken thighs and a package of chicken legs. That’s not enough to get us by until the next time I have a chance to stock up. Get chicken…check!
There’s a frozen turkey someone gifted us with and some bags of whole wheat flour…
In the other freezer, I can see meat from our local farmers, meat I’ve bought from mark-downs, frozen veggies and fruit, and some meatballs from Costco. Overall, that freezer is looking pretty good!
This is the inside of my second refrigerator, which is out in our storage room. We keep extra milk out there, and usually, it is full of extra cold food that doesn’t fit in our kitchen fridge. Yikes, it’s almost bear! So at Sam’s I will stock up!
My Sam’s Trip with my “Grocery List”
We were completely out of fresh produce, plus we were getting ready to head to Montana for Justus’ wedding: a 12-hour road trip. Snacks for littles (and bigs) were very necessary. So I bought packaged food I don’t normally buy in an effort to help our long drive be a little more fun. :)
The pictures I’d taken on my phone were super helpful so that I could reference what I already had and what I still needed to pick up. I’m telling you though, they just don’t make carts big enough for our monthly grocery shopping needs, ha!!
I barely made it out of the store without spilling this mountain of food. :)
It might be hard to tell the difference, but here’s our shelf once I got our canned foods restocked.
From here on out, I will definitely be taking pictures on my phone to the grocery store so that I can use this as my list. Technology at its finest!