This new year resolution actually started a little early for me. A shopping trip was definitely in order last night, December 31, since were down to only a glug of milk, one egg and two slices of bread. The shopping trip was quite productive and surprisingly relaxing. But, slightly disheartening, too. I enjoyed the trip because I did not have my toddler with me and was able to browse the aisles and zig zag back and forth as I found better deals than the ones I had already placed in my cart. My daughter seems to be at a stage right now, where the sight of food instantly warrants an immediate “more” and “eat” whether or not she is hungry. This new phase makes for VERY long grocery shopping trips. The trip was productive because the entire bill was less than $81 and I purchased all the food for our meals (breakfasts, lunches and dinners) till next Wednesday.
When I entered the grocery store, I made the conscious decision to start my resolution a day early. My “organic” and “local” radar was on. Without hesitation I snatched up the organic, northwest grown honeycrisp apples (only $2.99/lb – $0.60 more than non-organic) and the organic gallons of milk ($5.99/gallon vs $1.99/gallon for non-organic). But, the produce aisle made me hesitate as I snatched up my other produce. What was I going to carry my produce home in? If you had watched me last week, you would have seen a grocery cart filled with clear plastic bags – each one holding a different type of produce. A total of eleven different foods from the produce section adds up to a lot of plastic bags. So, I consciously decided to put all my lettuce heads into one plastic bag (quite a feat – I might add!) and packed all my other groceries into recyclable brown paper bags. I felt slightly defeated that I had succumbed to the convenience of plastic bags, but didn’t feel comfortable putting my lettuce into the cart without a bag or inside of a paper bag. A mental note for next time: find an alternative way to pack produce home from the grocery store so that I do not need to use plastic bags at all. Any ideas?
The egg section offered an entire host of problems. First of all, there was every option available in eggs: cage-free, grain-fed, organic, brown, white, speckled, omega-3 – you could choose from any one of these options or any combination thereof. I chose to buy an 18-pack of Wilcox’s Cage Free Vegetarian Fed Organic Brown Eggs for $5.99. The price seems exorbitant, but when I looked at the others that only came as a dozen for $4.99, I bit the bullet and grabbed the 18-pack. The only other road block I ran into was with this very same egg carton, because the egg carton itself was the problem. You see, it’s not a carton at all. It is a plastic container. Not cardboard. Not paper. Not anything that is recyclable where I live. It is made of recycled plastic. The package is marked with the recycle sign and the #1 inside and stamped “inter plast”. It is frustrating to me that Wilcox offers an excellent product at a reasonable price, but has made the conscious decision to package it in something that is not readily recyclable nationwide. And, so, after we eat the eighteen eggs, the container will be put into a box in our garage labeled “recyclable”, but will not be put out on Tuesday with our regular recyclables. Where I will recycle it – who knows?!