I'm tellin you, since the big remodel, Aldi has become one of my favorite places to grocery shop in Sedalia. It's cheap, it's clean, it's varied, and I like it. I have to remember to make Husbando eat before we go, or he will want to buy everything he encounters. So anyway, as I'm planning out my weekly shopping trip to Aldi, I got to thinking about the basics.  And I wondered if everybody must have the same experience as me.

1.  It Will Be Crowded 98% Of The Time. 

It seems like I've never found that "golden hour" when it's not busy out there.  If I go first thing in the morning, there are people waiting at the door. If I go early afternoon, everybody and their dog is out there.  If I go after five,.....well, let's get real here. I don't. No way.  But most of the time, you can get around pretty good. Sure, you'll have to wait a few seconds here and there and try not to hit anybody with your cart. But it can be done.

2.  People Will Do "The Swap" With You. 

If you're lucky enough to be walking up to the carts, quarter in hand, most of the time there will be someone ready to do the swap with you.  You hand them your quarter, they hand over the cart.  Simple.  Don't be that person that tries to swap two dimes and a nickel for my cart, though.  You know the only reason I keep change in my car is for bell ringers and Aldi.  I don't have a use for anything but a quarter, son.

3.  There Will Be Something Different Every Week. 

It's been my experience that every week, there's some new product that I didn't see before, and it's usually fancy looking.  Stuff like quinoa enriched with herbs or goat cheese with fruit, or sun dried tomato sauce aged with basil.  It's all so fancy! I remember when you bought a block of cheese and you liked it! Now, I can get seventy five varieties of gourmet smoothie on the cheap. Times have changed.  And I guess it's... widened my tastes, if you will.  Husbando discovered he likes hummus about three weeks ago.  You'll definitely find at least five different hummus flavors out there.

4.  The Cashier Will Be So Fast It Will Startle You. 

They are trained to be.  It's part of the Aldi Thing.  Before the remodel, they were quick, sure.  But now, they're LIGHTENING FAST.  Like, they're able to get through the whole conveyor belt of stuff and I haven't even finished unloading it yet. Then the little old lady behind you is giving you the stink eye because the cashier is ready for your card and you don't have it out yet.  Just give me a Second, Janice.  I'm working on it.

5.  Paper and Plastic Bags Are The Worst. 

I can re-use paper bags a few times, and if I have a heavier plastic bag, I can re-use that a couple of times.  But really, the way to go with me is the canvas bag.  You can fit a lot of stuff, it's got handles, and it's not wasteful.  And, you're not going to rip the bag and all your onions won't go flying on the sidewalk.  There are few things that annoy me quite like a bag that breaks when I'm trying to bring in ten bags of groceries at once.  And I will bring in that many at once.

6.  There Is A System To  Your Bagging. 

I see some people bring in their bag and just put groceries in it as they're shopping. Some people bring in boxes and put their stuff in that.  Some people keep boxes in the back of their car, and unload/pack up their groceries straight from the cart out there.  Me, I'm a counter person.  We have a system, where the heavy stuff goes in the canvas bags, cold stuff or stuff that will go in the fridge in the insulated bag, and light stuff in the biggest bag we have.  It's a pretty efficient system.  Husbando grabs one bag, I grab another, and lickety split we're done.  Now if I can just get him to stop sampling every little box of stuff as we're putting it away.

What do you think? What's your favorite grocery store? Do you have some tips?

Shoppingly yours,

Behka