Aldi is not somewhere I would ever have shopped. I remember when I was on maternity leave, my Mum came over from Ireland for 9 weeks, starting from when Aaron was a fortnight old. We used to go for walks everyday. One day we passed a brand new Lidl, and my Mum asked if we could go in for a nosey. Not only would I not shop there I wouldn't even be persuaded to go in for a look around, even when we had bucket loads of time on our hands!
I went to an Ice Bar event with Aldi, at which they got me HOOKED on their Ballycastle (Baileys lookie likie which has won several industry awards). I didn't have an Aldi in the area so until last year I didn't personally go and buy it.
Roll forward and when I became a SAHM I did start to shop at Lidl.
Fast forward again, and last year, Aldi sent me a nappy changing bag and a ten pounds voucher. I reviewed the bag, as below:
We found our nearby Aldi so that we could use the voucher and to cut a long story short we've shopped there every week since.
Along comes the #AldiChallenge and now I also want to shout about how much you/we have saved. This was the shop we did Saturday 31st January:
The last 3 times I have been in, I have walked around with free abandon and chucked in the trolley each and EVERY thing I wanted, and each time it has come to sixty something pounds, no matter what I do. There's always something extra in there. A couple of weeks ago it was a Sugar Free cookbook and two toys for Aaron. As you can see above, I got a box of bottles of World Beers at 3.99 for my birthday, yet that shop above still only came to 67 pounds. That lasts us over a week and always includes smoked salmon, and several other "meats".
Instead of putting the shopping away, I spread it all out for this photo, but I think I'd already put the toilet roll away - a nine pack in the downstairs loo and same for upstairs.
I think 67 pounds for all that is incredibly good value, and the ONLY top up shops I do mid week are bread and milk, and I stop myself at those (lately). I've become very strict with myself.
I no longer miss brands. I like Aldi's ketchup and I like their beans. There are a couple of things they haven't got quite right. Their copy of Warburtons Thins are crumbly with no elasticity like the real thing. Aaron hates their imitation Actimel, but I literally cannot fault them on anything else!
Their Lasagne in the chilled section is exceptional, but I forgot to buy one this week. I started getting their cuppa soups a fortnight ago. Only 45pence for a box which contains 4 sachets. They are so good I bought 3 different types this week and we're only on Thursday and I don't have that many left!
I know when people are cutting back they don't buy Pesto, but Aldi is so affordable I bought the green and red ones, as you see in the pic.
There are certain things I buy each and every week, but most weeks there's a few bits left over the next time we shop, so they don't need replacing. Sometimes we leave 10 days between a shop as at the point when a week has passed we often have a few bits left.
I love that I can pick up some nice bits within budget, which in the big 4 Supermarkets would most certainly put me well over. Things like this:
If you are yet to try Aldi, one of the things they're really popular for is there Special Buys Aisle. It's easy to plan, as they always have a magazine in the foyer which shows you forthcoming promotions. The Cycling event was super. The kitchen event was great. The Mother and Baby event had loads of bargains, back when I was sent the Nappy Changing Bag above.
Aldi have sent me some Valentine's Day bits. The range went instore on 1st February but I was rather busy that day (*birthday* coughs!). Fret yet not, as although I have taken too long to tell you about it, some of the stock will be in for a fortnight BUT, with the Special Buy Aisle, when it's gone, it's gone!
So, for Valentine's I have been sent
- A card, which is way nicer than it looks online - we have the black and white one from what you see here.
- A bottle bag covered in roses; they're only 79pence!!!
- Batman Lounge Pants for Daddy (eeeek, he doesn't do loud, but they'll find a perfect home with my nephew). I've tried to explain to Daddy that men DO wear things like that, as I have seen them when they put the bins out LOL, but he is convinced that they are so bright that they'll keep him awake at night ;-)
- Homer Simpson shorts and t shirt PJs, which are perfect because (1) Daddy gets hot at night and (2) he's a huge Simpsons fan - who isn't?!?!?!?
If you're buying your lover roses for Valentine's I have just been through Aldi's website looking to see what Special Buys are coming, and on Wednesday 11th February they've a wonderful selection of roses, which are way more affordable than elsewhere!
Anyway, I love our shops to Aldi, and it's made me so much more focused in my shopping, my meal planning and my cooking. I now buy food for meals, rather than wandering round a superstore buying what's on offer, so we no longer have any food waste! Gone are the days of me buying superfluous stuff. The store is so small, that I stay determined and easily navigate what I need. It's not boring as every week I fling something extra in (like the World Beers mentioned earlier) and it never puts me over budget. Even when Aaron comes in with me, and flings some bits in the trolley (I never let him do that more than 3 times in one shop) we still don't go over.
Fish cakes, their Nasai Goreng (it's like special fried rice and is in the chilled cabinet), their smoked salmon, etc... etc... they are several things I buy every shop without fail!
Where do you shop? Have you done the Aldi challenge?
I have not been compensated for this post and all opinions expressed are my own. I have however been sent a few Valentine's samples, as clearly outlined above.