How to manage your household shopping

I’ve recently being staying with my sister to help out during a stressful time. Getting to know how someone else’s kitchen is organised alway fascinates me (sad, I know). When searching for a bin liner I came across this under the sink: five packets of sponge scourers with at least three open!

Now, I realise this is a tiny thing and not exactly a problem (if you’re reading, sister – apologies for using this as an example) but it made me think about sharing some tips about how we organise our household shopping at home in case it’s helpful.

Matthew and I are in opposition when it comes to how we prefer to shop. I like to plan out the week’s meals and do a weekly shop at the weekend. We have a fortnightly organic veg box and pick up extra fresh produce as we need it. Matthew however loves to shop daily. He likes to pick up discounted food in the reduced section and fill up the freezer with stuff I will never eat (which drives me mad). Essentially he is a daily shopper and I’m a weekly shopper but since his job allows him to have more time at home I let him get on with it mostly.

What we do is have a shared iPhone note shopping list that we add to if either of us want something or notice that we are running low on anything around the house. If one of us buys an item from the list we delete it and it disappears from both of our lists. Here are my tips for organising your shopping in this way:

  1. Find a way to share a shopping list with the other people in your household who do the shopping.  If only one of you shop a physical list pinned up in the kitchen works fine but if more than one of you shop a shared electronic list is perfect. In an iPhone – go to Notes, create the list and then click the + people button at the top right. This allows you to share the list with anyone in your phone. Presumably as long as they have an iPhone although maybe android do this too?
  2. At the bottom of the list write out a Mon – Sunday meal planner list. This doesn’t have to be strictly adhered to but might save those daily ‘what are we having for dinner’ texts.
  3. If you are like me I prefer to have ‘one in’ of everything. So if we are planning a coconut curry and have a tin of coconut milk in the cupboard I’ll still add it to the list. If you are short on cupboard space you might not be able to do that but the list strategy should still help ensure you always have what you need.

If anyone has any other tips or strategies for household shopping I’d love to hear them in the comments below.

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