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On Sale This Week: Change Is Coming

10 January 2018   Lynne LaMaster
A look back and forward at our On Sale This Week Column.

On Sale This Week started back in the ’90’s as a paper hand out. There were one or two recipes, some tips and tricks and a chart of grocery ad comparisons. Meal plans were created based on what items were on sale. We called it, “Shopper’s Newsletter."

When we started Prescott eNews, we decided to change the name to “On Sale This Week,” since it wasn’t really a newsletter now. 

We provided ad prices per store, and started including YouTube recipe videos. It was so fun to find recipes from around the world. But, somehow the menu plans we used to include got dropped. 

So, we’re revamping this column. Don’t panic, these are ideas we’re testing. We want to know how you feel, though, so get your feedback coming.  

Check out the new format! On Sale This Week: Indoor Cooking, Cosy & Delicious

No More Ad Price List Per Store

We’re not going to do the list of ad prices per store any more. When we started doing the comparisons, you couldn’t get your ad prices online. But, now you can. We’re just not sure how useful that long list of prices is that we’ve been generating.

We’ll still point out exceptional deals, but only a couple per store. 

However, we’ve discovered a new tool that will compare the prices for you.  

Here is the link, bookmark this: https://www.pillsbury.com/coupons/in-store-deals 

I’ll admit, it’s not the perfect tool, but, we can make using this tool easier with some simple tips and tricks. And it covers many more stores than we can.

1. When you enter the zip code, just use 86301. If you live in Williamson Valley, and use 86305, they’ll suggest shopping at Bashas. I guess they didn’t get the memo that Bashas closed in this area almost 9 years ago. But if you use 86301, they’ll give you the (mostly) correct choices. Kmart is still in the list, but other than that, it looks pretty good.

 

2. Click on the first store you’re interested in. I chose Fry’s to begin with. That takes you to another window that looks like this: 

 

Here are the “Fry's” only results:

3. Now here’s where it gets interesting. See that arrow next to Fry’s? Click on that. Now you have a dropdown menu with all the other stores listed. Please note: You can  Check All, or Un-check All - that’s helpful in some situations.

4. Go through and check the box next to all the other stores you’re planning to shop at. 

5. Right next to it, you’ll see another dropdown menu that is called, “Select Categories”. Click on that. Then select the categories you need. (Same Check All or Un-Check All options here.) Click the arrow again. Now you’ll see lists of that category, with sale prices from each store listed.

Scroll to the bottom of the lists, and find the “More” button. Click on that, and you’ll have a larger selection. You may have to click on “More” several times to get the full list. 

 6. This is where it’s great, and not so great. It’s great, because if three stores are selling chicken, you’ll see prices from all three. Where it’s not-so-great is probably due to the stores being a bit vague in their own databases. It might say, “Beef Roast” but omit any specifics about the kind of beef roast. 

 

Pros & Cons

You can check items and create a shopping list!
You get a better selection.
More items are listed.
You get more stores listed, including Trader Joes and Walmart, which we simply can’t do ourselves at this time.
Click on the printable coupons tab, and you’ll see coupons you can use. 
You can sort by individual or multiple stores and categories.
The listing may be a little vague.
You can’t search for a particular item/brand.
The “Store Loyalty Coupons” tab seems, frankly, to be useless. Anyone who can use it successfully, please let us know.
You may need to combine this tool with the online ads. 

Menu Starters

While we aren’t planning to do a full list of sale items, we will be suggesting Menu Starters which use items that are on sale. In the Menu Starters, we’ll continue to show videos of great recipes. At the end, we’ll give a basic shopping list with those items in it for your reference. 

In the Menu Starters section, you’ll note that we don’t label them by the day of the week, ie: Monday, Tuesday, etc. Instead, it will be “Day 1, Day 2, etc.” Why is that? Because some Menu Starters will be more time intensive than others, and you know your schedule better than we do. This will also allow you more flexibility in your planning. “Oh, no, Aunt Betty’s coming. We’ll swap Day 4’s menu with Day 2." 

Here are some of the things you personally want to take into account when planning your menus:

1. How many people will be there? 
2. Are there special activities that afternoon/night?
3. Are there food items you should/should not include?
4. What meals can take advantage of derivatives? In other words, if you’re planning to have roast beef one night, and use the derivatives for beef stroganoff, you’ll have to prepare the roast beef first.  

The point is, it’s useless to shop if you don’t have a plan for how to use the food. We’ll try to help you take advantage of sales still, while giving you menu ideas for preparation. 

Recipes

The recipes will still be there. Some will be our original recipes, some will be recipes we’ve tested and tried and some will be videos that look amazing. No worries, we’ll make sure you’re still hungry after reading our column! 

Prizes

Finally, we’re going to have ways you can earn prizes. Honestly, we’re not talking big expensive prizes, it may just be a cool spatula (everyone needs more spatulas, right?) or a gadget we’ve tested. But, stay tuned for that - it’ll start to happen sometime in the next couple of months. 

We value your feedback. If you love the new format, or you don’t like it, please let us know.