Grocery Haul for Two and Strawberry Cranberry Jam

Good morning! It's time for this weeks grocery haul for two. My desire in posting my weekly grocery haul is to give an idea of what we buy, eat and how much that costs for two people. When I went searching for this kind of info I had a hard time finding it so I thought it would make a nice addition to my blog. 

Groceries are a big part of the budget and it also helps me to better focus on my spending as well. I found one of the most difficult thing about becoming an empty nest was trying to rethink how much food is required when you only need to cook for two people. It's a difficult transition to make and I found myself buying way more than my hubby and I could eat. Now that it's been almost a year of being an empty nest I'd like to think I'm getting a better handle on it all and sharing this with you helps. I hope you find it helpful too.

My first stop this week was Costco. 

I needed to restock my frozen chicken thighs and bacon. I was out of both items. How much do you pay for bacon? I bought 4lbs and paid $13.99, or $3.50 per pound. I know grocery prices in the Northwest are higher than most other places so I'm just curious.

I also picked up a bag of mini peppers, a box of saltine crackers (I get 12 tubes of crackers for $5.69. I think the tubes are bigger than what I get at the grocery store, but I'm not sure. I need to do some price shopping/comparison on them), a bottle of ranch dressing, two loaves of Dave's Killer Bread (my favorite organic whole grain bread). I also got a box of Jalapeno Poppers. This is what happens when you bring your hubby shopping and he's hungry! Ha, ha, ha.. However we both enjoyed a few of them with our meal so I'm not complaining. I also purchased a ham...... 


I know I wasn't going to add more to my freezer but... it's hard to pass up a decent deal.

The ham was $1.99 a pound. I bought a ham that was a bit over 10 1/2 pounds. I have two ideas for this ham. I'm either going to save it for our Christmas dinner or I'm going to can and freeze it. I'm kind of leaning towards canning and freezing. I'd love to have a few pints of the meat on the shelf and to make some ham broth and can that with a little meat in it for soups. Or make a few freezer meals from it.  I'll let you know what I decide. If the price of hams drops again before Christmas I may buy another one.

My total for Costco was: $80.00

Next stop was Winco...

The usual mix of fruits and veggies. I still have quite a few oranges left from the big box we bought at Costco last week so we didn't need any oranges. I could not resist the Vanilla Caramel coffee creamer (we both have our weaknesses.. LOL.. his is snacks, mine is coffee creamers! :). I also picked up half n half, milk, and some sparkling cider which will be put aside for our Christmas gathering and a box of tea. Every now and again I need to jazz up my water consumption so I picked up some club soda. I go through phases where I struggle to get my water down and find if I do something a little different now and then I get past that.

I'm LOVING this tea...

I talked about it on my Wednesday blog post (if you want more info on the tea you can read that post HERE). I drink a mug of this each night and find it so relaxing and helpful with sleeping.

I also purchased a few non food items. I don't include these with my grocery totals but keep track of those items in another category (household, animals, etc..)...

Cat food, razors, and Tylenol (generic)..

Winco total (for groceries only): $38.00

Grand total for groceries this week:


Strawberry Cranberry Jam


I made this jam the first time several years ago. It was a big hit.  Each year since then I've made it and it's become one of my holiday traditions and my family really looks forward to it.


If you’re looking for an easy, fun project that could also be a nice gift this may the answer!! I made a batch of this and it is soooo good!! As a gift it would be perfect coupled with a loaf of homemade bread or rolls, or even just given on its own. What is nice about this recipe is that you can use frozen strawberries and fresh or frozen cranberries. I bought several bags of cranberries in November and put them in the freezer. When I made this jam I used both frozen strawberries & cranberries.

This recipe makes a lot!! So you will have plenty to give as gifts and for your family to enjoy.

Here is the recipe:

Strawberry Cranberry Jam
Makes approx. 13 half pint jars

3#’s frozen strawberries
12 oz fresh or frozen cranberries
1T lemon juice
2 boxes pectin
1t butter
8 cups sugar

Put strawberries, cranberries, lemon juice, pectin and butter into a large, 6 to 8qt, stock pot. On medium heat slowly bring to a boil. Stir to prevent it from sticking. Simmer and stir until fruit breaks up. If you want to hurry the process you can use a stick blender to smooth it out, or leave the fruit a bit chunky, the choice is yours.

Turn up the heat to high and add sugar. Stir to dissolve sugar. Bring it all to a hard boil (a boil that cannot be stirred down) and boil and stir for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Fill half pint and/or pint jars. Put new lid on, ring on and put in a boiling water bath. Boil for 10 minutes. Remove from canner and let cool.


  1. Crystal, I'm in the same boat as you are. We are mostly empty-nesters except for our son who lives with us half the week and with my brother the other half of the week which is out of town.

    He brings all his meals along for the weekend and he also buys and prepares his own breakfast and lunch. I provide an evening meals by freezing containers of leftovers from any meal during the week. He has a nice variety to choose from and I didn't really do any extra cooking. All leftovers are used at our house and nothing is put in the trash!

    I also tend to over buy because it is a hard habit to break when I've provided for my family all of these years. I also keep finding "a good deal" and put it in my freezer but we aren't eating it fast enough with only 2 1/2 people.

    I will be very intentional when Christmas rolls around to use what I have and not purchase anything. We did that for Thanksgiving by just using what we had and it was a very nice meal that I served to guests 2 days in a row.


    1. Yep, Alice, we're pretty much in the same place. The overbuying is a hard habit to break! I keep having to do a freezer challenge and make myself not buy good deals and use what I already have. The best investment I've made to help with the leftovers is buying a bunch of 2 compartment freezer containers. There perfect for putting smaller amounts of leftovers in and having a nice supply of "tv" dinners. My hubby takes them to work or I'll pull out a couple on a night I don't feel like cooking. I haven't planned my Christmas dinner yet, but will try and use as much as I can from my freezer stash when planning. Thanks for your comment! Crystal

  2. I would like to know more about canning ham and making ham broth. I have never heard of either and I am curious. I have never done any canning but think I would like to make some jelly.

    1. Hi Carol, I'll be blogging about that for sure if that's what I decide to do with my ham. Ham broth is made the same way any bone broth is. The ham I purchased was a 'bone in' ham. It makes delicious broth and I like to use that in place of water for bean soups. Adds a lot of flavor. The jam recipe I posted is a great way to start a little canning and get a few jars to give away during the holidays too. Crystal


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