Minimizing and Zero Waste

Minimal Mondays – My First Bulk Shopping Trip

Happy Monday Folks! I hope you had a great weekend, enjoying the warm weather and enjoying yourselves.

Not to sound like a complete bummer but MAN! bulk shopping did not go as well as I’d hoped it would, but I learned a lot!

So first of all, I went to five different stores in order to do my shopping, including Amazon. I started out by checking out the two stores closest to my house: Lassen’s and Trader Joe’s. Trader Joe’s didn’t have as much as I thought they would in terms of bulk or even home products so I ended up only buying a bottle of Kombucha, a bottle of ground cumin, and a bottle of vanilla extract. Lassen’s supplied me with a tiny bit more, but still not as much as I was hoping, a vegetable brush made of bamboo and a 1/2 gallon glass bottle of milk. I’m going to try this option rather than buying regular plastic bottles from the store as I pay a deposit on the bottle and return it when I buy my next hopefully, it works out well.

My next stop was Sprouts and this is a store LITERALLY on the other side of town from where I live so I’m not too enthused with having to go way over there to get my groceries but they had the best selection. They still didn’t have the dishwashing brush I was looking for or a few other home items, but their bulk selection was better than I thought could exist. Every time I’ve gone there I’ve noticed the trail mix and the nuts but never had I noticed the flour and corn starch and especially not the hidden spice section! SUPER EXCITED! Of course, I didn’t need any of these items at the moment so I didn’t try using the glass jars but I did pick up some apricots and pecans that I was able to put in my cute produce bags. I bought almost all of the groceries I was looking for, everything either organic or non-GMO. I’m going to transition away from buying pre-packaged chicken strips or chicken sandwiches so finding a consistent supplier of organic chicken is really exciting for me. There was a new vendor at the farmer’s market last week that is going to have chickens but this time only had whole chickens available. The problem with the farmers market vendors is that they only have them in the spring and summer rather than year-round, we live in California – why don’t you have meat hens year round?! Once we have space, it will be a goal of mine to find a way to have meat hens year round, or at least raise enough in the summer to freeze and store for the year.

Next, I finished the bulk of my list up at Walmart, simply because there are a few items that Joe is specific about like his cheese for his sandwiches or his bottles of soda for work. I’ll likely look into alternatives for these, like buying sliced cheese from the deli counter at Sprouts but I didn’t have a container for it this week so had to turn to the plastic.

I got the final items from Amazon after being unable to find them anywhere locally. The first was a dish brush that is made from wood with boar bristles so that when I am done with it I can toss it in the compost. I also bought a new hair brush, mine is probably 8 years old (YUCK!). This is made 100% compostable so I am super excited to see how it works on my hair, some had a mixture of boar hair and nylon bristles but I opted for one with wood bristles so hopefully it won’t be too harsh on my scalp. I also bought a bamboo toothbrush.  I am most excited to try the toothbrush and was really surprised when there were no bamboo options at any of the local stores. I bought a single packaged toothbrush but have seen places where you can buy four, all with numbers on them, as in one for each family member. Joe won’t need any toothbrushes for a while, last time we found his Cowboy’s toothbrush, we bought a surplus – ha!

Once all of these items arrive and I see how well they work, I’ll share them and brief reviews of them in case you are interested in them as well.


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