Food Shopping in the UK made Simple

I would like to take you back a few years to when I was living in Hawaii, USA courtesy of the United States Air Force.  When it came to eating and food Ryan and I found ourselves in the melting pot of asian cruisine from the Phillipines, Vietnam, Thailand, and China (to name a few). Our eldest was 2 and our youngest was born in Hawaii and they grew up there asking to eat sushi, pho, fish, and shrimp for meals.  It was not the typical food from mainland USA but it became the norm for my family.  If we were not eating out we were buying our groceries from the commissary on base.  Usually twice a month we would go and fill up our shopping cart till it could hold no more just like the other military families.   If you were not careful shopping at the commissary could be like a mother on her own shopping at Target.  You leave with a cart full of items and many of which were not on your original shopping list.

Let us fast forward to my husband and I moving to England.

After we had graduated from living in a hostel and eating homemade sandwiches, we found a room to rent and could start buying groceries to cook real meals.  However we walk or take public transport everywhere. The 'american style'  of shopping is not going to work here. The nearest grocery store was far off and we would have to be smart about which items we chose because they would have to be carried all the way back home.

When we moved out of Brighton to the town of Haywards Heath we were now a short five minute walk from our town's grocery store.  It now became normal to go to the store every day or every other day for one or two items.  It was on the way home from work and accessible.  We do not have a car to take home bags and bags of groceries.  We get what we really need and we carry it home.

I look back on shopping in the USA now and I cannot imagine doing that here in England.  Our fridge contains what we need for the week and we possibly fill up one small cabinet space with items such as teas, oils, spices, baking items, rice and porridge oats. The pantry we have has items like sweet potatoes and onions, extra toilet paper roll and unused kitchen appliances like a microwave we now never use.  Its about simplicity. There must be a need and an immediate use.

 So we do not have a pantry full of unused boxed and canned items full of sugar, salt, and preservatives   We may have to get creative if a zombie apocalypse happens. ;)

Luckily for us there are no zombies. However we did get creative and resourceful.  This week was our second time of having groceries delivered to the door.  Ryan spends a few minutes on his phone ticking off items we need while seeing what specials are on offer.  Then the items come at a scheduled time in colour coordinated bags to tell me where they need to be put away.

I feel spoiled.

To think of walking with the kids to the bus station, to wait for a bus, to get to the store where I have to find what I need while being swarmed by many other shoppers, only to have to wait in line and then carry everything home is just exhausting having to type in this blog. Plus have I mentioned we got our organic veg box?  I am in heaven.

* Photographs belong to Bonnie Rose and cannot be used without written consent.

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