The problem with shopping lists

……is that I always forget something. Especially if it is the holidays.

Every holiday season, right before the big day(s) of cooking and merriment and the like, I go shopping to stock up and get everything* we need so we don’t have to go out again and we can just enjoy. My Dear Husband asks me about 25 times if there is anything I forgot. In a frustrated tone I say, “No, I am sure. We have everything we need.”

And every time I forget something.

This year, I forgot 3 things.

On Christmas eve around 4pm, as the meat for the Tourtiere was simmering away….

Have you ever had Tourtiere? It is the traditional Christmas eve meal in Quebec. Many Quebecois would have Tourtiere after midnight mass. It is a wonderful spiced meat pie of pork, beef and lamb with mashed potatoes. It is served best with red pepper jelly.

RED PEPPER JELLY! I totally forgot. Until, as I mentioned, about 4pm.

So off I went to the store to find it. I looked in the condiment aisle. Mint jelly, mint sauce, more mint jelly…. no red pepper jelly. What is wrong with this store? How could they not have red pepper jelly?

I tried to figure out where else it could be. After searching and searching I found it on top of the counter in the deli meat section. What a place to put it. Seriously! The only place you put your red pepper jelly is on top of a deli counter beside the cup sizes for potato salad!??

Anyway, I left victoriously. Now I was sure we had everything.

After we finished up our lovely Tourtiere (with pastry crust made by my mother in law which was fab!) and went off to bed without a care in the world.

At about 11:30am, as I was thinking through what I needed to do for my dinner of Cornish Game Hen, roasted veggies and dressing… I realized….. oh my gosh! We used the last of the potatoes in the Tourtiere. What is Christmas dinner without potatoes? I had half a sweet potato, but it just isn’t the same.

So off Dear Husband went, on Christmas day, to try and find potatoes. Safeway, Wallmart and Superstore were all closed. He drove around and around. Until he realized that there was a particular type of store that just might be open….. a little corner grocery store that sells Halal meat. Chances are if they sell Halal meat that the owners are probably Muslim and therefore might be open on Christmas. Brilliant.

Bingo. As he looked in the grocery section of the little store, “We are the Champions” by Queen was playing on the radio. And there, he saw, a little bag of Safeway brand baby potatoes. Jackpot. He left victorious.

Before DH headed home he asked me if we were missing anything else. I said, “No, I am sure we are fine.”

About 3 hours later, after everyone had had a nice Christmas nap, I said, “Oh my gosh, we have no firewood for the fire tonight!!!” I got quite the look for that one. And then, from the DH, “It’s not your fault, I should have remembered that too.”

We went without a fire.

But we had a lovely Christmas dinner: Cornish Game Hen, roasted veggies, dressing and a goblet of Mead. It was as if we were having an ancient dinner.

It was perfect.

So, what did you forget on your shopping list this holiday season? Did you track it down or do without? Please tell me it isn’t just my brain that doesn’t work!


7 responses to “The problem with shopping lists

  1. Lisa Sunbury December 26, 2010 at 10:24 am

    I am so glad to hear that I’m not the only one who makes lists, is sure I have everything I need, only to get home and find I’ve forgotten some crucial item! For me, it’s always the most simple and obvious of items. This year, it was milk. You see, 5 year old S. and I have a tradition. After dinner on Christmas Eve, she comes over to my little cottage, we light the tree, hang stockings, drink hot chocolate (marshmallows for her, whipped cream for me) and curl up together on the bed to read stories. But I drink soy milk which she won’t touch with a ten foot pole even if it’s mixed with copious amounts of sweet chocolate, so regular 2% cow milk is necessary. Guess who had to make a special trip to the store this year to grab a carton of milk? I love my lists though, and would probably forget twice as much without them. I have found if I put something on a list (to do, to buy) it almost always ends up done or purchased, one way or another! Glad to hear you had a lovely Christmas with your family! And yea for dear, patient husbands!

  2. Sophie December 26, 2010 at 10:31 am

    When I was 9 or 10, my mom would send me to the corner store when she forgot something. On days we had visitors, when she was preparing a big meal, it could be 3 or 4 times in the same afternoon. I was always afraid of coming back with the wrong thing (that was in the pre-cellphone era of course) and after the third time it got a bit embarrassing. But she usually bribed me with candy money in exchange…

    Hope you had a wonderful time for Christmas! Talk to you soon.

  3. barrenchemist December 26, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    You are not the only one! My husband had to leave twice the Christmas before last. Luckily our regular grocery store is open year round. Glad it went as smooth as possible for you though!

  4. Esperanza December 26, 2010 at 10:56 pm

    Sorry you missed out on the fire, but glad you got the other things you forgot. Luckily I was not in charge of much this Christmas so I didn’t have much to forget. I didn’t even forget much for our trip, though I did forget my daughter’s bottles three times (thank goodness we’re still breastfeeding too). I realized I have a lot to learn about formula feeding on the road.

    I hope you have a restful end to 2010!

  5. Justine December 27, 2010 at 3:15 pm

    I made exhaustive lists, and honestly, I have already been back to the store THREE times this holiday! I attribute this partially to the fact that my father in law came to stay an extra night somewhat unexpectedly, but there are still things I have no excuse for forgetting. (Goats milk egg nog sounds wonderful, by the way.)

  6. amoment2think December 27, 2010 at 7:15 pm

    I am so glad to hear I am not the only one that struggles with forgetting things!

  7. Lisa December 28, 2010 at 6:16 am

    I can be so forgetful, that I tend to over-buy, which then makes my DH upset that I am spending too much money. My forgetfulness tends to be in the form of doing a shopping list, then leaving it on the kitchen table and having to guess what was on it. I get totally bent out of shape over not having any cheddar cheese or cilantro in the house when making Mexican food, or no cream when I want to make a dessert. Still, I have mellowed with age and realize that nothing is really disastrous…

    It sounds like you had a lovely holiday. Wishing you all the best for 2011.

    Lisa (ICLW 74 Your Great Life)

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