Creating Grocery Lists with nvALT, TextExpander and Markdown
Published on April 29, 2012 by Ryan Irelan
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned on Twitter that I keep all of my grocery lists in nvALT. I have a history of almost every grocery shopping trip we’ve done in the last 18 months. This includes the meals we eat each week.
Here’s a quick video showing how I create and store my weekly grocery lists using nvALT, Markdown and TextExpander.
As you can see from the list I’ve been keeping grocery lists in nvALT for some time now. I use the groceriesx tag (this technique is cribbed directly from Merlin Mann), which is invoked using the TextExpander shortcut
;gxto start the name of the file in nvALT. The rest of the file name is the date I create the list, so I just use the
;ddateshortcut to get a full day, month, year date. After that I’m ready to create my list.
We’re a family of habits, so every week we have a list of food staples that we always buy. There’s no sense in writing out this list (or risking forgetting something) every week, so I created a TextExpander snippet that contains the latest list. I invoke this snippet using the
;staplesshortcut. That completes a Markdown formatted bullet list of the staple items and then creates a new bullet and cursor positioned there so I can continue the list.
One our habits for better eating and lower grocery bills is to only go shopping once per week and try to buy everything we need. This means that we need to plan out a week’s worth of meals in advance. It’s handy to have that meal list stored with the grocery list. I can refer to the meals while I’m at the store and also have an archive of what we’ve eaten in the past. This is nice if one week it is a challenge to decide what to make as a meal.
To create the meal list, I use the TextExpander shortcut
;mmealsand it outputs a week calendar of meals, starting on Sunday. We eat leftovers on the second day so each meal covers two days.
Typically, we shop on Saturdays and plan our first meal of the week for Sunday. If we decide we want to make the first meal on Saturday, I have a separate TextExpander snippet that is invoked with
;altmealsand returns a meal calendar starting on Saturday instead of Sunday.
That’s how I manage grocery lists with nvALT, Markdown and TextExpander. Thanks for watching.
If you liked this video, you should also check out Mijingo’s videos on Markdown, OmniFocus and Evernote. Let Mijingo help you learn something new.