About Me

I'm a Utah mom, just trying to make ends meet. Several years ago, I was introduced to a new way of couponing. I've been addicted ever since. I have a hard time paying full price for anything anymore.

I love couponing so much, I decided to become a teacher for Grocery Smarts.

I teach free classes and show you how to get everything you need at the grocery store and still leave $$$ in your pocket. I'll also teach you the best ways to get and organize your coupons. The best part of the class is when I show you how to match your current coupons up with the current local sales - getting the most bang for your buck!

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April 18, 2009

This ranks right up there with winning the lottery, but better for you

I read a blog on Pinching Your Pennies about a new co-op that was currently working in Brigham City and Clearfield. Since I'm a Davis County girl, I decided to try this out and I was amazed!

(quick explanation of what a co-op is: It's a group of people who choose to purchase food as a group to save money)

So I'm going to start from the very beginning (just so you know what I went through).

*Alarm goes off at 6:15 am - almost turn it off, because in that sleep filled mind of mine, did not remember I was going to the co-op.

*Laid there for several minutes trying to gather my senses and leaped out of bed to pull on my clothes, brushed my hair and teeth and jumped in the car and was off.

*Found the park (Which I had never been to before - I went to Kiwana's park in Clearfield. If you need directions let me know, callmestacy@yahoo.com or leave a comment)

*Talked to a few people, they immediately put me to work breaking down produce boxes (note to self, gloves would be helpful next time) so it was fun to talk with others who had done this before.

*After breaking down boxes, they allowed the volunteers to take a few extra fruits and veggies that were above and beyond what was in the baskets (I got 2 mango's, a bag of grapes and a bunch of broccoli)

*They had us line up (those that came early and volunteered, got to go first - Yea!!! I was glad I got somewhere early for once)

*The lady with the clipboard was checking us in and I was told to pick up the produce from the two baskets.

*I brought 2 recycleable grocery bags with me, but wished I had brought something more sturdy, like a laundry basket (note to self - for next time)

*I loaded the contents of the two baskets into my bags (easily 20lbs each) and took them back to the lady with the clipboard and signed the form stating I had picked up my "share"

*We were asked to help cart off the boxes that we had broken down, this is purely a volunteer program so I grabbed several loads and took them to the elementary and dropped them off in the recycle boxes on my way home.

*Got home at 7:20 am and wanted to call everyone to tell them what a great experience I had, but quickly realized it was a little too early so therefore, I am blogging about it.

Here's a few pictures of what I got and some additional details for anyone who wants to try it out.

This was everything I got, below are some closer pictures.

2 bags of green grapes

1 lb of strawberries

1bunch of bananas + 2 extra (I love them green, so they last longer)

1 pineapple (a little green so I can let it sit for a few days while we work on the other fruits and veggies)

10 tomatoes

8 Fuji and pink lady apples

7 mangos

2 large cucumbers

2 bunches of broccoli

3 heads of Romaine lettuce (I will need to use these fast - they won't last very long)

3 yellow squash

8 red potatoes

So here are the details - I am so glad I did this. I've been wanting to try out a co-op for a long time. I will definatley do this again, until my garden grows.

I went to http://www.bountifulbaskets.org/. Once there, the site is a little confusing - they mostly serve Arizona right now and are just opening up in Utah. (A little background: the people who provide the produce also deliver to restaurants so they are selling restaurant grade produce)

Look down the left hand column until you find Co-op Offerings.

Click on the picture and it will take you to another page where you choose your pick-up location, and what you'd like to order.

Submit that information with your credit card number and print your confirmation page (also good to bring with you in case they ask you for it)

Here's a couple of additional things to note:

1- This co-op is only every other week. So the next delivery will be on May 2nd.

2 - On May 2nd, they will open another site in Roy, Utah (North Park - I can give you directions if you need - email me at callmestacy@yahoo.com or leave a comment). Currently they only have 3 sites, Brigham City, Clearfield and Roy (next time).

3 - You are not committed to anything, if you want to participate, you sign up each week.

4 - The first time you participate you are charged and additional $3.00 for the baskets they use to seperate the orders for everyone - these baskets are not to keep, they are for the organizers of the co-op to use each time.

5 - I also paid a $1.50 handling fee and I'm not sure if that is everytime or not.

6 - I paid $15.00 for the produce I picked up (with the addition of the basket charge and handling fee, $19.50 total)

7 - I had the option to also purchase a 40lb box of Washington Pink Lady apples, an Italian Food pack (which was more veggies - I saw mushrooms, but didn't see what else this package had), a 5 pack of Honey Wheat Sandwich bread, a 3 pack of Raisin Cinnamon Round loafs, and a 4 pack of European Rye Oval loafs.

8- I was also told not to be late. Even if you've paid, they will leave if you don't show up on time. Arriving early definatley had it's advantages of being one of the first to pick and being allowed to get a few extra's. It's purely volunteer and some had been there since 5:00 am setting up. My pickup was at 7:00 am.

Each week will bring new and different produce. You never know what you will get and how much - I guess that's why it's fun. I get to try new things or things I would not have picked up at the store.

I hope you found the details of my experience helpful. I had always wondered how these got put together and now I know. Hopefully I'll see you there next time!


Mindy said...

That is awesome. Did you do it today, I bet you were tired, I know what time you headed home last night. hehe

Annie said...

This looks awesome! I went to the website and clicked on co-op offerings and there was nothing there. Any suggestions?

Stacy said...

I discovered later that they remove the picture for a few days, not allowing anyone to place an order. I am not sure when the picture will return. You might want to check back every couple of days. Once the picture is back the ordering period is in place and there are limited spots (how many - I'm not sure). Sorry - still new at this and am learning too.

Tracie said...

I love it! I wish I were closer! I am going to look for one in my neighborhood, heck county even! Let me know if you see anything!

Michele said...

We have a couple of really great things like that here in FL. The first one is called SHARE (Self Help and Resource Exchange) Food Network, another is Angel Food Ministries. I am not sure if they have any in Utah or not. I have just found out about Angel Food, so I haven't tried them yet, but I have done the SHARE at least three-four months. They typically have packages for $18, which include around 1/2 to 1 pound of 5 different meats, plus TONS of fruits and veggies. They have additional addons that you can order too. Last month I bought a ham for easter. It is huge and was $24. For Christmas I got a ham, a package of rolls, a blueberry pie, a can of corn, a bag of potatos for $24! The food is terrific and I am very thrilled with their prices! Hope his works out well and maybe you can find additional places that offer this kind of service.

Michelle said...

I was there Saturday, too. I've never been that excited at 7:00 on a Saturday morning before. I thought the co-op was really well organized and a great experience. I didn't know about the benefits of volunteering, though. At first I was jealous upon seeing your photos because you got more stuff than me. Now I know why =). Thanks for blogging about this, I think it could be a great thing for a lot of families.

Cameron and Michelle said...

So if we live in st george are we out of luck?

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