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Archive for August, 2012

Late summers promise.

August 23, 2012 3 comments

I’m looking forward to dinner. Apple something and carrot tomato soup. Mmm. Maybe lunch.

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Categories: What we are eating

Happy Monday morning

August 20, 2012 Leave a comment

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Comparison Shopping

August 18, 2012 5 comments

There are three basic options in my town for grocery shopping: large regional chain, smaller regional chain, and upscale single store. The large regional chain in a pain in the rear to get to from my house. It also takes me forever to shop there. The smaller regional chain often has dairy products that are at the very end of their “sell by” dates (and I have accidentally bought yogurt beyond its sell-by date). The smaller regional chain store is within (long) walking distance of my home, and we can ride our bikes there easily. And the upscale shop is, well upscale. Lots of nice groceries, an enjoyable shopping experience. EXCEPT — I have long claimed that by shopping that that store for my weekly trip I will instantly spend at least ten dollars more.

My husband prefers the upscale store for shopping. I decided to do a little comparison shopping. Here’s what I price compared:

Healthy Choice 7 Grain Bread

Minute Maid 1/2 Gallon OJ

Kemps (or Land o Lakes) Butter, 1 lb

Kemps (or Land o Lakes) Gallon of milk

Klausen Pickles

5 lbs Crystal Sugar

5 lbs Gold Medal All Purpose Flour

Here’s what I expected to find:

Upscale most expensive, Small regional chain middle, Large regional chain most expensive.

Here’s what I actually found:

Upscale ($25.45)

Small Regional Chain ($20.34)

Large Regional Chain ($23.33)

So I was surprised that the large regional chain (which is at least 10 miles away, depending on the route) was not the cheapest. That shop is not really on my way to anything (except Target or the mall), and just driving there costs me $4.

Surprise #2: the small regional chain is not only the cheapest, its 20% cheaper than the upscale shop. And the significant differences came in the form of staples (flour $3.25 vs. $2.49  and sugar $3.30 vs. $2.89).

Why didn’t I compare other products?  Well, honestly I was busy. I needed items in the dairy aisle, the baking aisle and I was buying bread. (This brand I knew would be consistent across all the stores). Why no produce?  Two reasons: in the summer we get our produce through two CSA farms (one for fruit one for veggies). Also I think produce is highly variable. In fairness, the upscale shop always has nice produce.

So in short, I told you so: that the upscale shop was more expensive. But I was honestly surprised that the giant store wasn’t the cheapest. And a little relieved because frankly, it takes forever to do my shopping there.

Categories: What we are eating

The birds and the bees

August 9, 2012 Leave a comment

A while back my friend recommended this book, It’s So Amazing!”: A book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families by Robie H. Harris.

Amazon link 

I bought it, stuck it on the shelf in the dining room and promptly forgot about it. My rising first grader (almost 7) found it and has been thoroughly studying it ever since. I really bought it for the older child. Older child shows no interest. Younger child will have most of the answers and can be older child’s go-to source.

We’ve had a number of interesting conversations this summer —

Walking along the beach, “What are those?”

“Those are fish eggs.”

“I didn’t know fish came from eggs too. So let’s see that’s fish, chickens AND humans. Cool.”

I’m hopeful these casual conversations will continue. Even if they are awkward. This book  is written at just the right level to honestly answer questions that come up, for instance “What is Sex?” is a few pages to describe exactly what is meant by sex without being a detailed how-to manual. There’s a description of sex as used to describe male vs. female, followed by a decent description of what sexual intercourse is. And then,

“Sexual intercourse may seem gross or nice, scary or funny, weird or cool, or even unbelievable to you. But when two people care for each other, sexual intercourse is very loving. Kids are much too young to have sexual intercourse.”

And now, I’ve done enough talking about the birds and the bees for this here blog. I highly recommend the book if you are the parent to a school aged kid. Or maybe the one for kids aged 10+ if your parents did a particularly bad job educating you.

Categories: What we are reading

It’s farm season – or what to do with five cucumbers

August 7, 2012 Leave a comment

Last week our neighbors with whom we split a farm share were on vacation. Veggies abound!

So I asked around, “what would you do with five cucumbers?”

Read more…

Categories: What we are eating

summer’s delights

August 3, 2012 Leave a comment

Well, I’ve not been blogging much. Mostly because I’m trying hard to use my time at the computer for working and getting ready for fall’s courses. Also, in my defense, my hard drive is almost full and so pictures are staying on the camera and not moving here to the computer.

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We’ve been having a fabulous summer. Lots of playing, some tennis lessons, camp, hiking and reading thrown in for good measure. Its a magical summer. I hope you are having a fabulous one too! For those of you who work all summer, fear not, reality of a work out of the home job is just around the corner, a few more adventures away.

Categories: What we are doing