Sunday, November 20, 2011


I've taken my old food blog, "Food Farr Thought," and merged the postings with this site.  I'm going to go through the monotonous process of labeling my blogs so that you can find the recipes on here.

I'll still post recipes on here from time to time.  Honestly, I'm just not a proficient enough cook or writer to maintain two blogs.  I hope you understand. :)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Kroger Confessional

About ten years ago, my little hometown got a Kroger close to my house.

I worked at Ingles around that time period.  Actually, one of my major memories of September 11th involves me standing in Ingles the night President Bush gave his famous speech.  No one was in the store.  We just stood around the small television in the front as the fear and panic crept into us.

To this day, I can't go into Ingles.  I did not enjoy my foray into cashierhood.  I didn't enjoy the way Ingles made their cashiers pick up all the items - including forty pound bags of dog food - to put them on the conveyor belt.  Yuck.

My Ingles-Phobia leaves me with only once choice:  Kroger.

Boy, my Kroger is terrible.

Want the reasons?  I like lists.  Here they are:

1.  Kroger was okay a few years ago, but then they added a huge expansion to the store.  The expansion created a section of rows RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STORE that just contain random crap.  Yeah, I said it.  It's true.  I don't want to have to walk through an aisle of beach chairs to get to the butter.  I don't need seventeen different brands of Snuggies in my grocery store.  I don't want the latest, greatest, thing found on an informercial.

2.  The produce.  It's terrible.  I'm sorry if you know the produce manager at the Kroger, I really am.  But I should be able to keep a package of salad two days, find strawberries fresh in the store, and keep an apple for a week.  A couple of weeks ago, I bought a package of tangerines to look cute in my wooden bowl at my book club party.  About four days later, they were literally rotting in the bowl.  I've never heard of tangerines going bad after a couple of days.  It was quite depressing.  I can go to Publix across town and have my produce last twice or even three times as long.

3.  You can't always get what you want, but sometimes I need some dang yogurt.  I love the new Stoneyfield Oikos Greek Yogurt with honey.  It's the best and some of the healthiest yogurt out there. I'm willing to pay extra for the health benefits and protein I get from it.   Stoneyfield adds just the right of sweetness to it - it kicks Chiobani's tail (I could do a whole post on yogurt, by the way...haha).  Apparently, I'm not the only one who thinks so.  Kroger never ever has this yogurt.  NEVER.  EVER.  Usually, if I need something or want something, this Kroger will be out of it.  Things that are pretty basic - like bananas.  Cereal.  Milk.  It's annoying.  

4.  Stuff doesn't make sense.  I don't want to shop for cookies next to hand sanitizer (it's not that bad, but it doesn't make sense).  I don't want beans next to bread.  By the time I had finally figured out the convoluted arrangement of this store, Kroger just recently moved everything around again.  So now, I have to figure out why the potato chips are by the vinegar, why the butter is near the coke, and why Kroger chose this arrangement.  I should have it figured out in six months or so.

5.  The lines.  Kroger will have approximately 3.5 million people within its massive monstrosity of a store, and will maintain two cashiers.  Sometimes, the manager (again, sorry if you know one - I'm just being honest) will leave his post of standing directly in front of the Capri Suns to open up a register to help out.  Three lines does not an efficient store make.  Many people opt to do the self-checkout.  I'm still relatively quick at this, thanks to my aforementioned Ingles experience, but when it comes to produce, I've forgotten the numbers (besides bananas - 4011!)  and it takes me a little time.  Of course, this makes the anxious Kroger shoppers behind me in line a tad bit irritated ....which leads me to...

6. The people.  Sometimes, I have to park at the Mexican restaurant at the end of the shopping center complex just to get to Kroger.  When I get into the store, there are people, people everywhere.  Some of them have crawled out from under a rock in Murrayville.  They come with the sheer intention of flaunting their redneck ways at their big ol' trip to Kroger.  They yell, act insane, butt you out of the way to get to the Easy Mac on sale, and get in front of you in the Starbucks line to order stupid things like seventeen mocha frappuccinos.   One time in the self check-out line (when I seriously had no other option), a fellow behind me yelled, "hey, I'm not in a hurry - you just take your time, sweetheart!  You just taaake your time!"  I gave him one of my Anne Cain looks.  He got the point.  But seriously, who says stuff like that to people in a grocery store?!

I realize that not all Kroger stores are like this.  I know people who thoroughly enjoy their Kroger.  I know people who work at other Krogers and they are wonderful, nice people.

I'm just telling you that my Kroger stinks.

There are redeeming qualities.  The pharmacy usually has good deals.  There is a Starbucks inside with a nice barista who can make me a caramel macchiato as well as any barista at a "regular Starbucks."  There's a redbox there. They're the only store around that sells Amelia's diapers, so I have to go there whether I like it or not (and this is usually the reason I go ahead and get groceries while I'm there).

But the Hour of the Kroger is upon me.  I know I'm going to have to suck it up, go there, pick up my thanksgiving groceries, and deal with the madness.  I seriously might try out some Publix diapers and drive across town to Publix.

I just wish I had a better, closer option.