Saturday, March 5, 2016


I buy ingredients to make cookies.

If you’re not an Albertson’s shopper, you might not be aware of the big change there. My Albertson’s store is now Safeway – literally. I expected some changes to occur as the two stores merged, but I didn’t expect Albertsons to quickly morph into Safeway. Even the weekly sales fliers are mostly (but not quite) the same. I’m not sure the upscale look, floral department, and higher prices work in this low-income community. (I actually heard one “guest” gasp as she peered at the price of Fugi apples and loudly proclaimed that she would buy hers elsewhere.) The one thing I truly wish they had eliminated – the Albertson’s Monopoly game – is now in full swing at both Safeway and Albertson’s. I refuse to play and commented to the cashier that I had in the past put a lot of time into it. To my surprise, she said, “a lot of time for nothing.” So true!

And what about that sales flier anyway? Frankly, I’m tired of the little pictures and the tiny print. I’m tired of specials that hardly ever change. I’m tired of “mix and match” to save $5.00. IF you want to shop there and IF you want to get the best deals, you have to play a little mind game. The cashier explained to us that as the customer checks out, when five of the participating products are scanned, the computer automatically gives the discount. Then it has to see another five products in order to give another discount. The shopper is faced with counting items as he shops, and of course, the store hopes you lose track. I’ve gotten so that I just don’t buy any product that’s part of that promotion.

The Albertson’s brand (“Essential Everyday”) is mostly missing, replaced by Safeway’s “Signature Select” – another sign that Safeway’s model is taking the lead. And while we’re on the subject of products, some of my favorites are missing: carrot shreds, Lawry’s seasoned pepper, and Lundgren’s Wild Blend Rice. 

But it’s not all bad. The freezers and cooling units are running well, the floors shine, and the meat counter is beautiful. I never thought Albertson’s was dirty, but it sparkles now.

Oh, I hear you asking, “Why don’t you just give it up and shop Winco, or even that other place – ‘---mart?’” And certainly I do that more than I used to. But, you know, it’s just the two of us, and we don’t buy much. And besides, Albertson’s is right next to Jo-Ann’s.

[Pardon the lack of photos. I didn't think the store or its guests would appreciate my wandering around taking pictures.]


Chris said...

Mmmm, those cookies look good! We, of course, have no Albertson's here, but do have Safeway. I never read their ads because of the small pictures and tiny print. There are, however, several things they have that I do love: their peach/pineapple salsa and their creme brulee creamer. And since Safeway is the closest grocery store to our house, we occasionally made an emergency trip there for say eggs, or milk. The rest of our purchases come from Winco, and I make certain I take Dan to be my box boy. :-)

Kathy said...

Spicy oatmeal cookies, recipe from Clabber Girl.

So glad to hear that I'm not alone in my dislike of the small pictures and tiny print. Just seems like so much clutter to me.

Yes, a visit to Winco is usually a together project. Mike says he isn't a trained box boy, but it seems to me he does as well as anyone. I came home from Albertson's to find the lettuce on top of the frozen food. And -- when I visit Winco, I have to be sure I have cash or the checkbook.

What do you do with peach/pineapple salsa?

Chris said...

With the salsa? Eat it with chips, use it in my Mexican rice, eat it with chips, use it in taco soup, eat it with chips, use it in Arroz con pollo, eat it with chips... :-)

Yes, no credit cards at Winco, but Ann has a debit card she uses for just grocery shopping at Winco, so you could go that route. Me, I'm a cash or check girl.

Hallie said...

We're playing the Monopoly game. So you're saying we're not going to win??

Kathy said...

You're playing Monopoly? I should have guessed. I'll save my tickets for you.

I hope I don't burst your bubble when I say your chances of winning anything are slim. The first year I played, however, sometimes there were meaningful coupons. Last year, the coupons were for obscure products, like plastic picnic utensils. Initially, you have lots of slots to fill on your board, but as you fill them, playing becomes a tedious chore. Nevertheless, I'll take my pieces and save them for you.

Yes, Chris, I'm a check or cash girl myself. We haven't used a debit card in years. We just have to remember when we go to Winco that we must have the cash in hand or the checkbook.