My husband and I planned to go on a post-dinner walk to help digest the hot dogs we just ate from the food court (more on that later), but I let him know I felt I needed to write a blog post to process my thoughts and feelings after our first Costco experience.
He thought it would be good for me to write this blog while it is still fresh in my mind, so without further ado, here are my thoughts about Costco.
The background knowledge I had about Costco was pretty limited but not nonexistent .
Firstly and most importantly, I knew they made the absolute best cakes ever created on earth. Nothing has, or ever will be as good as a Costco sheet cake. Except for Shuler’s cheese spread (the bright orange kind) with a hint of horseradish. Close second.
Secondly, I knew you bought items in bulk.
It is just my husband and I right now, but we eat enough for a family of 5, so the bulk situation didn’t turn me off at all.
Thirdly: the samples. I was expecting them hot and I was expecting them delicious.
With these pre-conceived notions in mind, we headed to Costco because my husband has a free pass for this month due to his amazing workplace situation. #marriedup #score
I have divided this blog post into – The Highs and Lows. Let’s start with the highs in the spirit of lingering excitement.
The Food Court. You can ask my husband for verification of this, but I held back tears as I ordered our hot dog dinner. I was so excited. I got a drink and a hot dog for $1.50 and so did Max. We also got a cup of frozen yogurt for $1.35.
Even if the hot dogs tasted awful, I would probably still be on cloud 9 because of the price. I couldn’t stop talking about how good of a deal it was. I was thinking about how much the meal would be at a ball game, a restaurant or a state fair. On top of that, it was the best hot dog I have ever had in my life. There was a relish machine and a contraption that sprinkled onions on the hot dog. (This was out of onions, management was notified…jk).
The Food Court gets an A++++++++. It would get an A++++++++++++++++++ if the onion machine worked.
The People: The People are the best there. I typically avoid places I have never been and was nervous about being the new kids on the block. We didn’t know the ins and out of the Costco process but the workers were SO nice.
There were a few uncertain moments.
We didn’t know the whole “Show your receipt to the lady at the door when you leave” thing so she kind of barricaded us and stopped us from leaving and I became quite confused.
She had a nice, expectant smile but we were awkwardly smiling at each other in silence for about 14 seconds.
I clearly was missing something so I let her know we were first timers and that I didn’t know what she wanted from us.
She laughed warmly and explained the process to me. We shared a chuckle over the awkward dance we just did together and I seriously could be really good friends with her.
People score: A++++
The Parking Spaces:
As someone who is parkingly challenged, I appreciate the wide double lined spaces featured in the Costco parking lot. Although Max was driving, parking lot incidents can still easily happen when you open the door of your car too fast or slam the shopping cart into the car next to you (Not speaking from experience). The room between the cars made me feel like an actual celebrity and I rode that high for awhile.
Parking Spaces: A
The Lows: Before you Costco lovers get on my case, please know I love and respect your choices, but I had what my husband would describe as an “emotional roller coaster” while being there.
My first disappointment was the samples.
We had 2 opportunities to try food there. The first sample was a bite of a sandwich on wheat bread. Nothing fancy, but free so it was fine. The second sample was a cheeseburger. This was delicious.
I was wildly disappointed not in the quality of the samples, but the quantity. Yes, I was going expecting to be fed enough to fill me up for dinner, but I would have been satisfied with just a few more. The biggest disappointment was the lack of sweet samples.
I wanted chocolate, candy and cake. My husband gently reminded me that they don’t need to let people sample candy because we all know what it tastes like.
But some people maybe never have tried cake. Bring out the cake samples.
The freezing cold refrigerator rooms.
Instead of having refrigerators, Costco deep freezes an entire basketball court sized room. There should really be a warning sign that it is about to drop 70 degrees because it took my breath away.
Refrigerator Rooms: D-
Barbecue Sauce Stock:
At any given time, I have a full pantry of Barbecue Sauce bottles on reserve. I am a die hard Sweet Baby Rays girl, but I thought, if there is any food item I need in bulk, it is barbecue sauce.
Costco has ONE brand of Barbecue sauce. One. A place that sells 171 types of olives only has Famous Daves. That is unacceptable to me. I told Max I was going to Target afterwards for the real stuff.
Barbecue Sauce: F
Everyone talks about how much you save at Costco and buying in bulk. Maybe I’m not mature enough for this because I COULD NOT bring myself to spend $18 on paper towels even if it meant saving money in the long run. I couldn’t do it.
I will go to the regular store 3x a month and buy smaller bags of Cashews for $8 instead of buying a huge container for $20. I’m sorry. I can’t do it. Like I said, maybe I’m not mature enough.
On top of that, too much math was involved for me trying to figure out if I was actually saving money as compared to buying it at Target.
Lastly, the lack of bags. This was only a low because I didn’t know about it. As someone who wants to puke every time I load our storage closet with another fistful of plastic grocery bags, I can respect Costco going bag free. I just wish I would have done some research.
My husband is a quadruplet, and as we shopped, it was clear that if we find ourselves in a quadrupled or tripled situation down the road, Costco might be the place for us. I will have to be more mature then. But for now, I think we will stick with Meijer.
Except for the Food Court. I will be there frequently.
On the way home, my friend Sami told me everyone is welcome at the food court. I gasped so loudly it startled my husband. All these years. I didn’t know.
Any time my husband and I leave the house together, we call it date night, so overall we had a good date night at Costco, but I just don’t see a future there.
I need to hear your thoughts about Costco. Please comment and let me know.