Lent 2015: Day 4

So far my experience of supermarket-free Lent has been most uneventful – I’ve got through it without doing any shopping whatsoever! I have of course upped my veg box delivery (which includes fruit and eggs), and I’ve had milk delivered by a local dairy for the last year – both of which have helped me to avoid physical stores so far.

Things are getting a bit desperate though in some departments.  We are, for example, down to our last loo roll (!) and the freezer’s supply of convenience-type foods is about to run dry. As anticipated, we’ve done a little more cooking than usual, but we aren’t yet feeling any pain from being supermarket-free.

I threw out some Tesco vouchers today that will go out of date during Lent.  I wondered if that might hurt a little, but actually the vouchers were to encourage us to buy products we wouldn’t use, so would have been binned anyway.  I think that because we shop with local businesses to some extent, our Clubcard can’t obtain an accurate picture of our lifestyle, and therefore predicts our needs incorrectly. I feel like I’ve foiled a spy, which makes me happy.

I am slightly dreading being supermarket-free negatively impacting on the kids’ lives in some way, for example, if they are asked to bring a specific item to school, or if we have to duck out of some supermarket-related social activity (I used to spend happy hours in the café with friends when they were babies!).  This hasn’t, however, been a problem the last two times I’ve done the challenge, plus now we have older children, my group of friends have found better things to do with our time! Hopefully the kids and I will emerge in April with our social lives unscathed…

As far as I’m aware, and due to planning on our part, we don’t use any extra supermarket services, such as banking or film hire. I’ll admit though that we are partial to saving our Tesco Clubcard vouchers and swapping them in for money off at Pizza Express. This was a weekend treat that saved us money, and meant that we could eat out on a whim if we didn’t fancy cooking.  I think we’ll miss that over the next 40 or so days. I must look into how this deal benefits Tesco, and decide if it’s a boycott that I should continue once Lent is finished.

I hope everyone else who’s going supermarket-free over Lent has got off to an enjoyable start. I’ll be back with a shopping update over the next few days.



the last toilet roll

8 thoughts on “Lent 2015: Day 4

  1. Well done! Day 4 and I needed to resort to Coop for baking parchment. We’re entertaining tomorrow & I’m making meringues. We used to have a super tiny baking/ironmongery shop in Greenwich but it folded because people bought online or at the supermarket. I loved popping in for the occasional kitchen item, light bulbs, picture hooks and parchment! As I don’t drive the large supermarkets hold no appeal for me & I can find 101 excuses to avoid John Lewis… I’m consoling myself that a/ the roll of baking parchment will last a year, b/ it came in a cardboard wrapper & c/ it came from the Co-op rather than Tesco or Sainsbury.

    I know what you mean about foiling the stores. Lord knows what the Co-op data cruncher makes of me!

    • Sounds like you’re having an interesting time and doing well! Not driving is an interesting factor – probably increases the likelihood of using local shops but rules out driving for unusual products that you can’t get close to home. Be really interesting to compare at the end how much a car helps or hinders.

  2. I love swapping my clubcard points for dinner out – a way more enjoyable spend! All well on my end apart from one hick-up on Friday when we had run out of soy milk for a recipe I was cooking for guests. Being vegan and supermarket free seems to take even more planning as there aren’t many local shops around here that sell alternative products. But I’m better prepared now used my time this weekend to explore some local stores and a Sunday market. I didn’t think about loo roll though! My local health food store sells recycled stuff though – that’s OK right?! 😛 x

    • Sounds like you’re doing really well! A glitch or two just makes the whole thing more interesting and adds excitement to the challenge. Loo roll from the local health store gets full points I reckon 🙂 x

  3. Lord I hadn’t thought about being completely supermarket free from the other services they offer. We have a Sainsburys bank account and I hadn’t even thought about not using their petrol stations. Meg, I think as far as supermarkets go Co-op is probably one of the better ones. I know I’ll end up doing some of my Lent shopping in Poundland/Wilkinsons as they’re not ‘technically’ a supermarket but surely the Co-op stocks more ethical products?

  4. Pingback: Supermarket Free Lent: Days 1-6 | Second-Hand Tales

  5. The great thing about this challenge is it gets us thinking and questioning everything eg other services outside those conventionally allocated to the supermarket, even where the lines that we draw will vary. I also will (and probably have already) done shopping in shops that aren’t ‘technically’ supermarkets but are probably no better ethically….

  6. Pingback: Supermarket-free Lent 2015: Day 13 | westywrites

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