Monday, June 1, 2020

Weekly Eats: A Trader Joe's Haul

A weekly round up: eats, watches, and reads.  In this week's edition, a visit to the office brought an end to my 3 month Trader Joe's drought and my book binge continues.

I'm going to skip right past this week's eats so that I can ramble about Trader Joe's...

Lunch Highlights
I'm still having salad success.  It's hard to see what's in the bowl, but it's a base of roasted sweet potatoes, rice, salad mix, avocado, and Well Plated's Chickpea Salad.  May I just say that chickpeas and avocados are two great tastes that taste great together?  And the dressing is Bolthouse Farms yogurt dressing if anyone cares.  Final thought, salad mixes are where a Costco membership is gold.  At the regular grocery store you're looking at a tiny bag for $4, Costco has mega salad kits in the $4-$6 range.

I was also glad to have leftover fried rice from last week on the days that I was in a rush for lunch.  I ended up mixing in a healthy dose of chili garlic sauce.

Monday: leftover homemade hamburger helper

Tuesday: grilled chicken and mashed potatoes

Wednesday: chicken burritos (a.k.a. leftover chicken, rice, and cheese rolled into tortillas).  The adults added Trader Joe's fire roasted pepper mix to theirs.

Thursday: a night out! SIL#1 and family drove their youngest across the country for her summer internship.  They have things planned out so that they have adult children living about a day's drive apart and spent a night at each kids' house.  The whole family went up to my nephew's tiny apartment in the Big City.  We had pizza, salad, and wine at his apartment and then went out on the town for gelato.  Being in the Big City is as close to normal as we have been in some time.

Friday: mandatory takeout night.  The kids voted for Chipotle and said was their favorite mandatory take out night so far.

Saturday: mandatory burger night.

Sunday: mandatory I didn't feel like cooking default for nights like this is chicken parm, which is one of my husband's favorite dinners and incredibly easy.  We use Costco's panko chicken breasts so it's even easier.  While I was getting them out of the freezer I noticed that I had a nice portion of spinach artichoke pasta waiting for me so I had that.

Trader Joe's Haul Deets
Guys, what can I say, I got around this week.  Not only did we go up to the Big City for a family dinner but I also had to go in person to work to pick up paperwork so naturally I stopped by Trader Joe's while I was there.  There is of course no reason why I couldn't have gone before except that it seemed pretty outrageous to make an hour round trip (a.k.a what was  previously my everyday commute) just for coffee and fig bars.  But now that I had to make the drive anyway it was on. 

When I got there the line was across the front of the store and all the way around the back of the building which made me question how much I really like TJ's coffee.  I decided to see how far the line would move in 10 minutes and move it did.  I was in the store in 20 minutes and out of there in 20 minutes more.  IMO, the line makes it faster to shop b/c it's less crowded and they have baggers so that checkout is also faster so you make up for the time you spend waiting to get in.

P.S. Google says that the average visit time at my store is 10 minutes...I know that sometimes I do take my sweet old time in there, but c'mon I'm not the only one am I?  Who is getting through TJ's in 10 minutes?

Here is what I bought (TL&DR the entire store).

  • Bay Blend Coffee.  They only had 3 cans so I also got a bag of Joe's dark ground coffee in case it's a while before I get back there.
  • Smashin' S'mores, favorite treat of my husband and stepkids.  They only had 3 boxes so the fellas have lean times ahead of them.
  • Frozen Fire Roasted Peppers and Onions mix, 3 bags again because it's a really satisfying thing to add to a burrito and we eat a lot of those.
  • Single serve guac packs, there's nothing wrong with Holy Guacamole but TJ's is just a bit better and hey-o lots cheaper.
  • This Fig Walks into a Bar cereal bars!  Another favorite snack for the entire family.
  • A bunch of randos: tempeh, avocado oil, sesame oil, strawberry kefir (my current post run recovery go-to), salted cashews, sunbutter, frozen roasted corn, a pound of ground chicken and several pounds of ground beef because it was crazy cheap (my experience is that TJ's doesn't seem to get the memo when food prices go up...if you've ever wondered why I wig out about this store so much).
Treats for Stepkids:
  • Oven baked cheese bites, one kid thought they were weird and the other kid ate the entire (small) bag within a day.
  • Hold the Cone chocolate chip ice cream cones...the boys had a fight over which kid ate more than their share when these were gone. 
  • Sublime Ice Cream sandwiches, these are moving a bit more slowly.
New Stuff for me:
  • Purple sweet potatoes, I'll report back when I try these.
  • Synergistically Seasoned Popcorn...very addictive to the point that it's for the best that I won't be going back to TJ's for a while, highly recommend.
And I also got my menfolk a dozen roses.

Hubs and I saw the Rifftrax version of Plan 9 from Outer Space

Which led to us seeing Ed Wood.

Thanks to Monica's podcast, I stumbled on a show about something that I have not thought about since 1993 and that I would have told you I had no interest in learning anything more about.  I'm 4 episodes in to Waco and wow, these actors are so good that if the show was just them reading the phone book out loud it would be worth a watch.

My good book karma continues.

🚨🚨🚨Good Book Alert🚨🚨🚨Good Book Alert🚨🚨🚨Good Book Alert🚨🚨🚨

The Passenger by Lisa Lutz moved up from being a book that I thought was pretty good to a book that I think is pretty great.  It just kept getting better with each page and I stayed up very late on a weeknight to finish it.

Now reading: Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok, about half way through and I really, really, really like it.


  1. My problem is that I would overeat at your house. I would ask for seconds and thirds and would not be able to stop until I pop or something.
    So delicious!!!
    I do that too when I stand in line, only instead of 10 minutes I go for 5 minutes. Always works well - lines usually move much faster than we imagine.
    Love that you bought roses for your men!

    1. No worries on overeating, there are two very hungry caterpillars in our house.

  2. I love TJs with my whole heart. Last week when I was there, there was NO line outside. I think they're allowing more people to be in the store at one time here now. Panko chicken is a fave among the kids here. The Caveman not so much. I'm going to watch Waco!

  3. I haven't been to TJs since before the pandemic! Everytime I drive by there is a line outside. I'm glad they are adhering to social distancing guidelines. The other stores, not so much.

    I loved The Passenger!

  4. I feel like the purple sweet potatoes are mix between normal potatoes and regular sweet potatoes. Curious what you think!