Wednesday, 2 November 2011

The Shopping List System that makes you go "Ahhhh!"

One of life's little frustrations has to be the moment you arrive home from the Supermarket only to realise that you've forgotten to purchase one of the most important things on your Shopping List. And almost as irritating is that phone call you receive from your other half asking you to pick up just one more item that they'd forgotten to add to the list, just as you're arriving at the check-out, or even worse as you're already loading up the car! One way to significantly reduce these moments of "grrrr" is to set up a Shopping List System whereby whenever an item is about to be finished and needs replacing, it is immediately added to your Shopping List. Sounds simple and yet so many of us rely on memory, just jot down a list right before departing for the Supermarket, or decide that wandering the aisles and choosing whatever items grab your attention is the way to go. These methods invariably lead the shopper to arrive home without obvious essentials like bin bags or even milk and to the purchase of a few non-essentials such as that DVD on special offer that you'll probably never watch or that new moisturiser that you've been meaning to try for a while even though you have one that's three-quarters full sat in your bathroom!


Another advantage to this Shopping List System is that you can categorise items to help you plan your Weekly Menu (another topic to be tackled in Monday Management) and organise your Shopping List according to the order items are stocked in the Supermarket, thus eliminating that feeling you get when you arrive at the last aisle of the store only to realise that your final item is stocked near the entrance. This method can also help you save money by encouraging you to only buy items that are on the List thus cutting down on the unnecessary items you might otherwise be tempted to buy.

You can create your own shopping list really easily in Microsoft Word or Excel, using categories that are most suitable for you and your family. Here's the list that we use, that has proven to significantly reduce our supermarket shopping stress levels! (Click the link "Grocery List" to download this Shopping List as a Word Document using Scribd - you may need to create a free Scribd account).

Grocery List



You can adapt the categories to best suit you and your family, for example, other categories could include Pet Food, Organic Produce, Condiments, Herbs and Spices, Pharmacy and so on. I print these out in batches and pin them on my notice board in my larder. We then simply fill them in whenever we have run out of something or fancy a certain product and then take it along with us when we next go shopping. Now the only thing we need to remember is to take the multitude of used plastic shopping bags that we always say we need to recycle and almost never remember to bring with us to the supermarket (I think we've managed it once in the past two years but I've now added a reminder to the bottom of my shopping list so here's hoping!).

To print our Grocery List as a PDF (if you don't need to adapt it in anyway) then click Download or Share on the Menu tab below. Please note you may need to disable pop-ups for this site to view the PDF.


If you can think of any other categories that would be particularly useful, have any other suggestions or would like further help with setting up your own grocery list then please leave comments below!



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