I always sort of feel like I’m walking into Disneyland when I go into Trader Joe’s, save the charming predictability one finds in the land of fantasy and whimsy. You never really know what you’re going to find when you walk through these beguiling doors.
They’re constantly bringing in new cache and scattering it throughout the shelves without really telling you.
Tricky, very tricky.
Of course, that’s part of what keeps you going back, now isn’t it. When you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for but are sure that whatever you find is going to be good, nine times out of ten, you must be treasure hunting.
And lets face it, that’s much more fun than going to the grocery store with a list any day, don’t you think? Grocery stores are for days when practicalities must supersede adventure.
Hardly my preference, but such things cannot be entirely avoided, I’m afraid.
This random treasure hunting certainly has its potential downside, for new treasures cannot be spontaneously brought in if old ones are not simultaneously taken out. My motto with Trader Joe’s is this:
Enjoy thoroughly what they offer, never get too attached to anything, and be willing to try anything, bar none.
This has worked out most beautifully for me on most occasions.
There is something good about holding blessings in this life rather loosely that seems to allow for our deeper enjoyment of them, if we can remember to do so. We are, it seems, quite naturally inclined towards the very opposite of this, wanting to own and seize and grasp, staking our claim upon something as soon as we feel it is ours….. even people sometimes. But I’ve found that, as difficult as it can be at first, letting go and appreciating something for what it is and not because it’s mine is deeply rewarding and refining on many levels.
Mine? What does that even mean? Nothing in this world really belongs to us at all, and any good thing we delight in is a gift we cannot claim as our own. We lose something when we try, I think, and so does that which we are attempting to grasp.
But I digress, here is my most recent plunder:
Roasted Gorgonzola crackers.
These little beasts are no joke, my friend. They are only 1.99 a box, a fact I neither understand nor feel I need to alert them about……though it sort of makes me feel like I’m cheating someone out of something whenever I pick up a box.
And not the sort of box that looks like it’s full but is actually half-filled with cracker-air. No, it’s the real deal.
They pack a good punch and are great by their lonely self, but also do rather nicely with a light whipped cream cheese, if you fancy such things.
I certainly do.
TJ’s Canned Dog food
This is what I fondly refer to as doggie crack, since as far as your dog is concerned, that is exactly what it is. I don’t know just what they put in this stuff, but any dog I’ve ever fed it to is never the same again. Chicken seems to be the preferred flavor, but for some reason it’s picture is impossible to find on the internet, which scares me just a little bit and makes me think that perhaps the cans themselves have all been devoured by crazed canines who have tasted whats inside.
I don’t know, but consider yourself warned.
Onto more people food.
Cheese & Green Chile Tamales
Ok, I come from Cuban family that made authentic, mouth-watering tamales from scratch every Christmas growing up after having the stuff driven over from New Mexico. And I still love these Tamales. For a frozen food they’ve won my heart.
Rice Crispy Bars
I know, I know, I’ve mentioned these before, but look- they’re back. (: After noting their absence during recent trips, I had feared the worst and accepted the fact that they’d likely never grace my mouth again. But, seeing they’ve returned, I really must celebrate their presence…..I would be remiss not to.
Wasabi Roasted Seaweed Snack
You sort of have to like this sort of thing to like this one, and since I like this sort of thing I’m going to mention it. (: Delicious for those who have a taste for it.
And lastly, Turkey Chili with Beans
The question is not what can you do with this stuff, it’s what can’t you do. Seriously, the possibilities go on and on and on. Here are just a few:
Chili dog (very good with sweet potato fries)
Baked potato with cheese and chili
In a bread bowl
And just for kicks, lets not forget the best smelling soap in the world:
TJ’s Green Tea bar soap
Happy TJ hunting, my friend. Don’t forget to share your treasures.
A previous adventure: http://charliesbend.wordpress.com/2011/01/20/treasures/