We have an open source grocery list.
What that means is that rather than one person taking charge of the grocery list, we stick a used envelope up on the refrigerator and people can write things that we’re running out of or have a hankering for on there as we notice or hanker throughout the week. On Friday evening or Saturday morning, we do menu planning and add other stuff to the list right before grocery shopping.
Open source is nice because nobody has to have the full mental load of this particular chore and if we want something, we can just put it on there.
Of course, if you’re on a really tight budget, this kind of open sourcing isn’t going to work– or you can only use it to put staples back up on there (rice, beans, canned tomatoes, frozen mixed veggies, etc.) when you’re running out. When your every penny counts, a top down budgeting planned around your pantry and whatever the week’s sales are makes the most amount of sense. Not having money can take more mental load.
I’m also waiting for DC1 to discover that ze can add things to the list at times other than menu planning. If ze sticks to just writing ice cream (because ice cream is AOK in my book), that won’t be a big deal, but if ze starts adding things like cheetos, I may be lost forever, assuming DH buys them just because they’re on the list. (“Hm, I wonder why DW put cheetos on the list? I thought she was totally addicted to those and couldn’t have them in the house without getting sick. Must be for a recipe of some sort…”) DC2 will probably have even more interesting demands, knowing DC2. (“How did lobster make it on the list? DW must have it down for a recipe… I wonder if she knows it’s $30/lb right now.”) Fortunately the amount of damage that can be done at a grocery store when you make a reasonably good amount of money is limited. At least compared to say, if we had an open-source Target list.
How do you do your grocery planning? Is it one person? Multiple? Do you bring a list? How do you decide what to put on it?