How much do I love the 99 cent store?

17 Feb

Let me count the ways:

1 bag spinach

1 container blueberries

4 plums

1 bottle low-sodium soy sauce

Tofu

Chicken of the Sea tuna

Honey

Ocean Spray cranberry cocktail juice

Yesterday, I bought all this for $7.90 at the 99¢ Only Store. $7.90. Anyone who has been in a Save Mart lately knows what a good deal this.

I know what you’re probably thinking: But it’s the 99 cent store. Gross. I get that. I used to think that way, too — that there was no way I’d eat fresh food from a discount store. And then I became poor. Pride takes a backseat when you have to watch how much you spend on staples.

I happened upon the 99¢ Only Store at McKinley and First when I was looking for some such small bit of nonsense, and that’s when I saw they had bags full of citrus for 99 cents. And spices for 99 cents. And cans and boxes of dried goods for less than that. I wondered why no one had told me of this miracle place.

Sure, sometimes something in the produce aisle can look a little worse for wear. But I’ve seen plenty of rotten fruit at Save Mart, too. I go by one rule: if it looks good, I’ll buy it. If it doesn’t, I’m no worse off.

Recently I discovered there’s a produce-selling 99¢ Only Store store closer to where I live (it’s on Bullard and First), so now I don’t have to drive as far, which is nice. Much as the Brig and its $3 drinks has ruined other, more expensive bars for me, the 99 cent store has just about ruined other grocery stores for me (never again will I pay $3-$4 for a bag of spinach, I swear to you this).

I encourage you to give the store a try. Hopefully you’ll be as pleasantly surprised as I. [Edit: Unintentional rhyme. Sorry.]

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6 Responses to “How much do I love the 99 cent store?”

  1. brodiemash February 17, 2011 at 3:39 pm #

    Sometimes you have to wonder if the drive, depending on where you live, is worth the savings & time. But other than that, 99¢ FTW! Where else can I pick up Jose Canseco’s newest book for under $1? Okay, bad example…

    • heatherinfresno February 17, 2011 at 4:37 pm #

      Yeah, when I was still going to the McKinley/First location, sometimes the drive didn’t seem worth it. Now that I’ve found a closer location, it definitely is.

      I mean, spinach alone is usually 2-3 times more expensive at other stores. Blueberries, too. These are things I buy frequently, so I’m saving quite a bit. Seems worth it to me.

  2. Natali February 17, 2011 at 5:26 pm #

    I’ve heard good things from others as well about this place. Unlike Dollar Tree, 99 cents stores carry full sized name brand groceries that are overstock. They’re opening a store on W. Shaw near my work, I look forward to checking it out soon!

    • heatherinfresno February 17, 2011 at 7:11 pm #

      The cool thing is, the one on First and Bullard is next to a Fresh and Easy, so you can pop next door for the things you can’t find at the 99 cent store.

  3. ed February 20, 2011 at 8:20 pm #

    how was the tofu?

    • heatherinfresno February 20, 2011 at 8:32 pm #

      Haven’t tried it yet. This week.

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