Every Day

The Best Laid Plans……

Ever have one of those days where the best laid plans seem to go off track? I am sure that everyone has had a day like that.

On Monday, I told you that I was planning on canning the meat I purchased on Tuesday. So I got up bright and early that day. The first thing I did was put the chuck roast along with fresh potatoes, carrots, celery, and beef broth in the crock pot. I turned it on so that we would have a nice dinner after my day of canning.

I washed all of my jars to can the ground beef and got my accessories and vinegar ready. I put half of the ground beef in a huge fry pan to cook it. As I was standing over it, I got the strong smell of vinegar. I then smelled the meat that was not in the pan and got the same vinegar smell. I knew immediately that Top’s had sold me bad meat. I checked the date on the label and it was the same day I was cooking it. I had not checked that at the store because one of the meat ladies was putting it all out and handed me a package because she was in my way. I assumed it was all fresh for the sale. That was a mistake on my part! Never again will I not check the date.

I called Top’s and they told me to throw the meat out and bring my receipt and their label from the package. They said they would refund my money. So after taking the time to throw all the meat out and put it in the garbage can in the garage, I went up to the store. A woman refunded by money. I had paid $ 18.90 and she said to me I will give you $ 19.00 like she was doing me a big favor. I spent more than that in gasoline and time to correct their mistake. I was tempted to say something but I let it go. I decided I would not go back and buy another package. At that moment I did not trust what Top’s was doing with their meat. The meat was totally brown when I opened it except that the outside part was red. Are they selling old meat, putting a new date on it, and just putting pink slime on the outside? I don’t know but I was not taking any risk again.

My sister had mentioned to me that Aldi’s had chicken on sale for $2.49 a lb. They had no tenderloins so they put their chicken breasts at the same price. I got 2 large packages.

I came home and cut all the chicken up to can it. As I was getting ready to do so, I noticed that there was no heat radiating from the crock pot. I felt the side and it was ice cold. I unplugged it and plugged it back into another outlet. Sure enough it heated up. Hubby has to replace the other outlet. But there was now no way that this stew was going to be ready to eat for dinner. UGH! So when it was finished by 8pm that night, I put it in a stock pot and cooled it down before I put it in the fridge. We ate odds and ends from the fridge that evening. Last night I heated the stew up and it was delicious. We will eat it again tonight.

I canned 4 quart jars of chicken. They held the entire 2 packages of chicken. I decided not to can the pork so I froze it for Hubby to grill it outside over the weekend. I was just too tired after the chicken was done.

The next morning I noticed all of the can lids were popped. However I always take the rings off and then lift the jars by their lid to make sure they sealed. The very last one I lifted did not seal. I had to throw that jar of chicken out. I was so disappointed but it is the first time in 2 years that I have not had a jar seal. So I count myself fortunate. I have no idea why it didn’t seal. I did everything right. No cracks in the jar or lid and I wiped the rim with vinegar. Oh well!

My week is getting better and better, yet very busy. I have been helping Hubby cut and trim a lot of our flowering bushes to get them ready for the winter. We also threw out our hanging baskets of flowers. We kept the actual baskets though so that we can reuse them next year. I am going to try to grow impatience to put in them next spring. I got some seeds to do that. Those two baskets were $39.99 each this spring at Niagara Produce. If I can grow them myself, it will save us a lot of money. But anyhow we did so much work that with grass clippings and all of the stuff from the gardens we put out the equivalent of 6 barrels of those and garbage.

I will post our weekly Frugal Things post sometime this weekend.

12 replies on “The Best Laid Plans……”

I have my own concerns with TOPS. I never wanted to say anything because the experience was mine. Others might do better. But you have to understand TOPS is still in bankruptcy. I don’t trust them at all. Ditto for Hanford. I’ll tell you my experience with Hanford (and you might never shop there ever!) But Many years ago I bought a package of their chopped meat. When I looked inside the package, there was a bunch of Curley hairs on the top of the meat. By Curley hair, I mean it sure looked like pubic hairs. I called the manager over, she looked inside, made a grunt and with that I walked out of the store and never, ever have stepped foot inside again. I think that’s 15 or so years???
Supermarkets aren’t doing well anymore, despite inflation and the high costs of grocery products. I think all the theft has finally taken a hurt on them and they are trying whatever they can to make a profit. I once bought a bell & Evan chicken from on upscale gourmet store and when I got home, the chicken was rancid!!!
So far, we’ve been very very lucky with everything from Aldi. If I have a problem they refund my money PLUS if I want/need, they will give me the product again for free. I just take the money back.
Did you hear that Shop Rite is closing six stores here in my NY area? One is in the next town over. Yikes. We shop mainly in Kingston NY and everyone is scared they are going to close this store down too. We shop there when they have their big discounts that Aldi can’t beat. We will be lost without this additional store. Lastly, there is NO WAY in hell we would shop at our local Walmart Mart. You literally take your life in your hands with that one. I’m writing a post on this. Stay tuned.
Sorry you had so many problems. It’ll get better, for sure. Our mini-fridge died last night and there’s no way all this stuff can fit in my kitchen fridge. Five years ago the I bought all new kitchen appliances I bought a smaller fridge because I thought we’d be eating less food. Not stocking up and buying more!!! A new fridge ($2000) now is totally out of the questions. Hubby is going to try to fix the mini fridge in the basement. Wish us well. UGH!!

Hi Cindi,

As far as I know Top’s is no longer in bankruptcy since they merged a year to two ago with Market32 (the old Price Chopper).

I believe a lot of stores are having trouble with theft.

My son told me about Shop Rite because the one he used to shop at is closing. I only go into Walmart about once or twice a year and only after they open early in the morning. Otherwise I use my grocery which I have at all my stores.

I am sorry about your mini fridge. I hope Hubby can fix it. Maybe he can find a You Tube video to show him how. Good luck!

Hi Cindi,

I live in Wappingers Falls and shop at ShopRite and Aldi near me. We used to live in Hyde Park and shopped at those stores in Kingston. They are both the cheapest stores around here. Tops is about 40 minutes away from me now that the one in Rhinebeck had closed about 8 years ago. I never liked that store. Is the bread discount store still in Kingston? I don’t know of any that are still open around here.

Hi Mary. The discount bread store in Kingston closed down. The building is still empty. I pass it every once in a while. Don’t know much about that other town. But a new Stop n Shop opened up in a big center in Hyde Park. I stopped in once and then promptly walked out when I saw the prices. Kingston is still the best bet up in the middle Hudson Valley. The mall is almost fully closed down but the shopping still is very strong. Lots of traffic. Most of the stores are outside along the roadway (instead of being inside the mall) I planned on writing about the area in an upcoming post. Stay tuned.

That stinks all around! I’m an aldi and shoprite gal. Our small local (5 aisle) supermarket has been known to change dates on foods and even sell outdated items on “clearance.” It’s highly illegal and they could be fined but in a small town who is going to come by and check? It’s just aggravating to check dates constantly if I stop for a few emergency items. The latest was yogurt that expired 10/5 but was on sale. No thanks. I’ve asked for fresh milk (not the same day or next) and was told they wanted to sell all they could before they got out better dated milk. Again, No thanks.

I’m glad you got your money back. Things are way too expensive to waste.

Hi Jackeey49,

I know it is so frustrating. We too have had milk go bad within a couple of days. So the only milk I buy anymore is shelf stable, dry, and evaporated.

To be honest with you I don’t think government cares what they do with our food anymore. In our state they used to have to put the place of origin on our meat. Then during Covid they suspended that. They never brought the regulation back and we wonder why there have been so many meat recalls.

Hi Precious. I am glad you got your money back. We have started talking again about getting some beef next year from the farmer we got from a couple years ago.

Your week this week sounds like my last week. Luckily the girls are both well now. Hubby did do another night turn on Monday, but they got everything done.

This weekend is our local Halloween party on the street. Hubby will be making 17 lb worth of pork butt.

I went to Kroger today for groceries. I did get 3 of the $1.99/lb turkey breasts and put them in daughter’s freezer. I had a $10 off meat coupon that I used to help defray the expense. My receipt said $52, so it was $42. 26.13 lb worth. I was also happy some of the Thomas English muffins and bagels were BOGO and they had some seasonal flavors that I like. Tonight for family dinner I made a really good chicken pot pie.

Hi Chris,

A great idea to get a cow from a farmer. Sorry you had such a crazy week too. The party sounds like fun. I love smoked pork butt. Yum!

That is a great price for turkey breasts there. I am hoping the price comes down for Thanksgiving. Bagels and English muffins never cane in the house unless they were BOGO. I would love your pot pie recipe. Or do you just throw things in like I do?

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