Monday, June 20, 2011


I have something to confess.  Come closer.  Closer.  Closer, so know one else will hear.
I have a problem and I keep it bottled up inside.  My secret, the last year or so, I've become a compulsive shopper.  No not clothes.  Not shoes.  Nothing so glamorous.  It's the grocery store.

See, a little over a year and a half ago I was injured at work.  I was told to go out on worker's compensation.  In December of last year the company I worked with for the last 7 years let me go.  I'm not physically back at full capacity but they wouldn't take me back at light duty.  It's been really tight money wise in our house.  I'm trying to find work but so far no luck.  My husband's had to take a second job.  My comp case is on hold while the doctors (mine and the insurance company) duke it out.  No money coming in from there, just a bit trickling in from unemployment.

My running out of food.  I know it sounds a bit crazy but I worry about it in the dark recesses in my brain.  I know it won't happen but the fear is real and it's lurking there.

I'll pursue the grocery store ads looking for deals.  I'm not a super savy shopper and I don't use coupons like I should.  It seems that the coupons in Sunday's paper are for things I don't normally purchase.  So, it seems like they're a waste.  I really need a serious couponer to sit down with me and help me set up a system that works for me and what I buy.

That being said, I'll look through the local ads for the best deals.  I'll stock up on things I know we'll use.  Problem is I'm worrying now that I'm spending more money "stocking up" than I should.  Should I put the money into savings?  Should I use it to take the kids to budget friendly things during the week so they can get away from the house during the summer?  I just don't know.

At this point I have 10 tubes of toothpaste, 6 boxes of waffles, 10 boxes of cereal, tons excess baking supplies (because I love to bake), boxed mixes for quick desserts, boxes of snacks for the kids, boxes of juices boxes.  It's not extrememe excess but still more than I think I should be purchasing on a limited shopping budget.  I have to tamper down the need I feel to buy more.  It's really becoming a problem.  It's skewering our budget and adding to my anxiety level.

I find myself compulsively going to the store to pick up "just a few things" 3 or 4 times a week.  Many times a $5 quick stop will turn into $25-$30.  That doesn't seem like much but I find that some weeks I'm spending $150 on my trips there.  I'm trying to limit myself to one trip and asking my husband to pick up fresh fruits and veggies as needed after he gets out of his second job (at the grocery store).  I'm battling it daily., tampering down my anxiety. I need to stop this compulsive behavior.  I don't think my husband realizes what I'm feeling.  I don't want to add to his stress level .  He has enough on his plate.

That's my confession for today.  Do you have any compulsive behaviors?  Feel free to share here.


D - Just Mom's Blog said...

I know what you're feeling. I have often felt the same way. We have a 15% off day on the first Tuesday of the month so on that day I stock up on all the things I think we might need for that month - only problem is, that trip comes out to being $800 or so right at the same time as all the bills are coming out so I'm trying to figure out if the 15% is actually saving us anything. One thing I noticed you saying is that you buy a lot of juice boxes, why don't you get a drink container and refill it with juice from home or even water. We've found a significant savings by just doing that. Just a thought. Anyway, following you from the Monday Blog Hop. Hop by my place anytime.

Brag All About It said...

oooh, the grocery store, chips, soda, a sandwich, lol you name it, i grab it!

Hello! newest follower on GFC!
Following from the Monday hop!
Would love for you to stop by and follow back and say hello!

Mommy's Juggling Act said...

@D-Just Mom's Blog...Thanks for the follow and support. I'm following you back.
As far as the juice boxes, that's an idea I've been pondering. They always get a juice box in their lunch box and a their water bottle for snack. I think I just may give them water for both. Makes more sense and they like water. Thanks again.

Mommy's Juggling Act said...

@Brag All About it....Thank you for following, I'm following back. I just went to the store today and spent $35. I'm going to try not to go the rest of the week. I think we're ok and I spent $20 at another store yesterday. Wish me luck!

Rach (DonutsMama) said...

Have you thought about just going to a cash system for groceries? Like keeping $100 cash/week in an envelope for groceries and household and when the cash is gone then that means no more spending that week?

Anonymous said...

Oh it's hard, I used to stock up, but then realized I was forgetting what I had and buying more and never really getting ahead.

The key to stopping is knowing that the sale will happen again, and it does.

My Dad once said to me - you don't spend money to save money. Wise man.

Good luck :)

KimBerly said...

New follower from blog hop Monday.
I love grocery shopping and before B was out of work due to cancer I would shop all the time. check out this post
To see my stock pile on chicken.
I know that you say that you don't use coupons but I promise you it's worth it especially if you like to stock up. You can subscribe to coupon website that will email you what coupons to use to get the best deal..

That's just my two cents. Can't wait to read more of your blog.

Sandra said...

My husband has the same compulsion as you. I don't know what to tell you. Stop? Then again, you are buying things that aren't going to go bad. My husband keeps coming home with weird exotic fruit that nobody will eat, and it ends up rotting on the counter top.

Sara said...

What you should probably do is pull yourself from the grocery store at all for a month or so. Make a list and send your husband (I know he's probably busy but you can pick something up at home to compensate) with the list to pick up only the things you need (and mostly unprocessed foods). You'll be amazed at the money you'll save.

Stockpiling generally leads to waste. The food or products expire or become outdated and you'll never use them. Remember should there be some emergency you can always go to the food bank and the money you'll save you can use before you hit that point.

Remember that a coupon isn't saving you money if you're buying something you don't need (and no one needs ten tubes of toothpaste)