Sunday, 11 May 2014

Bank Holiday Food Shopping - It's Cheaper at Morrisons

Delighted to be a #MorrisonsMum I headed off to do my shopping on the first Bank Holiday in May (yes I know we have another to come and I can't wait)! It was planned to be a family shop, but so obsessed is Aaron with his bike, that he and Daddy went off, and who was I to miss out on a slow meander round a rather large pleasant, spacious supermarket!

I don't know if the staff knew I was coming but wow, everyone without exception was well presented, with a smile. They were all attentive to me when approached, and focused diligently on what they were doing. I had a long chat with the Fish Monger who was particularly extrovert and a passionate Morrisons shopper himself.

Having been to many branches of Morrisons over the years, I know well motivated staff (who don't stand in clusters gossiping, nor do they walk around miserable) is quite common with them.

With my whole background since University (and before and during) being in retail I know this is probably down to two things: (1) you can't have staff THAT well presented, consistently and hard working, without it meaning there is an incredibly strong management team in the store, which normally starts with a hard working, well-liked Store Manager and (2) for this to all consistently be the case, there must be a strong HR/Senior Team centrally, who ensure that this is the case. Which means they hold their people in as high regard as their produce, and it shows!

I went off on a tangent there... please forgive me...

My boy, Aaron, as I said goodbye to him, and his recently acquired bike helmet:

Being a babe of the 1970s I am old enough to remember when supermarkets used to be on high streets (remember the Sainsburys with the orange uniforms and beige tiny floor & wall tiles) and the transition to Supermarkets being large out of town hypermarket affairs with car parks. It was de rigueur for them to include clock towers to trick you into feeling like you were in a shopping "village", provincial town of sorts. Some architects then got lazy and stopped bothering. Was really pleasantly surprised and nostalgic when I arrived at this Morrisons (it goes far off to the left - a particularly large store):


After doing a tiny bit of research (it's called Google don't you know) I've discovered that the first out of town food superstore of its kind actually opened in November 1964, so the new era of shopping for the British consumer actually pre-dates my arrival on this earthly plane! I do also remember scanning being introduced, but no date that pre-dates me too, despite me even remembering what me and my Mum were buying the day it was introduced in my local supermarket.  When I was 15 years of age I worked in the Co-op as a cashier, and it was in the days when everything still had a priced sticker on it. If they fell off, you had to know prices off my heart. I am proud to say that I was the cashier the others shouted out to for the answer. Always a bit of a geek/nerd/boffin me! Some things never change. Well at least not till baby brain came along!

Anyway, back to the task at hand, my being a #MorrisonsMum, in THIS century!

Before I crack on with telling you about the shop itself, can I just say the Mummy free time continued, as by the time I was finished, Aaron had fallen asleep in the car, so I was allowed to go to the Morrisons Cafe and have even MORE free-time. I wasn't going to say no ;-) I'd meandered round the store at a very slow pace (enjoying no 3 year old in tow) and had perused all of the many offers. The store was quiet, full, clean and beautifully presented.  By the time my PACKED trolley was paid for, I took great delight in putting it in locker number 1 (that's my key on the tray below). A member of staff had to assist though as I did not realise that you attach the trolley INSIDE the locker, get your pound back AND then use that pound (in my case a token) to lock the locker door. I'll know for next time though ha ha!

What happens next is ironic to say the least. I went way way over budget with my shop, so I put a few items back whilst paying, as even with putting them back my bill was 129 pounds when I'd wanted to remain within the 80 pounds of vouchers provided. Despite Aaron not being with me, I didn't put back any of the things I bought for him (and he'd have been none the wiser)! In a typical Mummy Martyr way (apologies if any blogger or online person is actually called that) I put my treats back, one of which included the best seller "I Quit Sugar". Anyhow the WHOLE time I was in the cafe I was regretting it and tweeting about it, so I went back for the items (two books) but not the salt and pepper pots ;-) The two books were only 11 pounds...... eeek. Anyhow, during this time, the cafe decided to make all of their on display cakes 10p each, and suffice to say I bought the lot. It then became a 2 day sugar splurge (for me and the hubby) that was meant to be a last big splurge before an imminent diet/detox - that *coughs* is yet *coughs* to start :-( ah well, best laid plans and all that...

Am I ever going to tell you about this shop????

I did buy all the food I needed. I promise. But. I. Have. A. Confession. We were meant as #MorrisonsMums to buy what we'd normally buy but there were too many things that grabbed me that I could not leave behind, like these two beauties below, hence I went over the budgeted 80 pounds of Morrisons vouchers that BritMums/Morrisons kindly sent me

And it didn't end there, I bought myself roses, but then at 2 wee Great British pounds for a bunch of 10, that are still going strong a week later as I type this, who can say no?!??!?!
I think I interpreted the brief as "buy what you'd normally buy" (but with the addition of the line: "in the circumstances") i.e. with the circumstances being that I had 80 pounds gratis that made me tempted to get a few additional items. I also got a coir "welcome" door mat that I fell in love with at a very reasonable 5 pounds - they were way dearer when I was a DIY Manager in Sainsbury's Homebase in the 1990s!

I took spectacular photos as I went round the store, but the reason I am late in publishing this blog post is because I cannot find (for love nor money) the USB cable to download them from my camera to my computer. The only reason there are any photos in this post is because thankfully those are the ones I took with my phone.

Part of our brief is to cook a meal and tell you the average price for serving.

I won't do that with everything we bought as I got A LOT!!! and we'd be here all night, but I will go through one dish.

So I made salmon, and veg for me, the hubby and Aaron.
The salmon was 6 pounds and could easily have served 3 adults, as it was it was for 2 adults and a toddler.  We love salmon in our house.

The Hollandaise Sauce was a very reasonable 1 pound, and was delicious.

I always steam salmon on a bed of sliced lemons in one of my Salad Master pots. Delicious. 2 lemons were used.

We had a big serving of broccoli, carrots, and parsnip. I didn't do any potatoes as I felt it was too late at night for such stodge.  Bit of a mistake though, as I haven't had chance to use them during the week and didn't put them in a dark place/cupboard so they now, a week later are starting to go green. Meal planning has never been a strong point with me :-(

Oh and I always sprinkle dill over salmon before I steam it - delicious!

So the average cost per person was: 
  • Salmon 6 pounds
  • Loose broccoli 62 pence (used all)
  • Parsnips 69 pence (used half)
  • Carrots - 1 bunch at 1.49
  • Hollandaise 1 pounds
So that's 3.15 pounds per person, which is very reasonable for a dinner including salmon. Potatoes wouldn't have added much!

I have found my USB cable so will now add on the best of my photos :-)

It honestly felt like everything in the store was on offer:
I am trying to give up alcohol so bought this instead of any wine, Pimms or Prosecco *sniff*!


I got a lot for my money: 80 items, which looks like this:
I had a very willing model in the cashier, who sung to me the whole time she scanned (actually I don't think she realised I was listening) and when I took ONE photo she told me to take more! To get it all in! I TOLD you the staff in Morrisons are awesome didn't I!!! See!!!

I found savings on all lots of my favourites; I was a very happy #MorrisonsMum shopper indeed and a week on my fridge is not empty. I still have a full fruit bowl too and my bananas are all still yellow! Must eat them actually and get the juicer out. I have really missed juicing.

It's great when the things you'd normally buy are on offer, especially the Fairy - good saving there!

You too can save. Read here: about the new cheaper Morrisons.

Disclosure: BritMums on behalf of Morrisons selected me to be a #MorrisonsMum and kindly sent me 80 pounds of Morrisons vouchers.  As outlined above I bought lots of things over and above food, including a t-shirt and some toys for Aaron, so I actually spent 129, additionally spending a further 11 pounds when going back for the books I'd left behind. This in no way reflects food shopping for 2 adults and a child as I was the big child and had a good old splurge, and well deserved it was too: retail therapy!

P.S. these are the cakes I had away with me, as I was in the Morrisons cafe till nearly closing so I got them all for 10 pence easy - who was I to refuse:



2 comments:

  1. Wow -that sounds like an awesome shop and I have to say that you #morrisonsmum s are selling the store very well. I always say that it's more expensive to shop when the kids are sleeping ;) x

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  2. You sure made supermarket shopping seem a lot of fun! We love Morrisons too. I bought my mother in law that book "I quit sugar" for her birthday and she was SO excited. She's using the ideas now, I think. I'd really like to but don't think I have the willpower just yet...

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