I have learned, the hard way, that veggies never last as long as I would like them to. I also found that if I don't have them ready-to-eat they go untouched. Actually, they go untouched until I clean my fridge and I end up having to throw away my hard-earned dollar disguised as limp, lifeless celery.
As a way to keep my budget on track, my refrigerator a little cleaner, and my life a little easier, I designated my bottom shelf as my salad bar. When I buy my veggies, I prepare my salad in my salad-spinner and add the salad basics like celery and carrots.
I usually find that an entire bag of carrots and celery is too much to put into one salad, so I chop enough for the salad and store the "left overs" to have on-hand as a healthy snack. I keep the carrots in a Produce Saver to help keep them from getting slimy, and the celery I cut into smaller stalks for dipping. (Note: Produce Savers are ideal for uncut vegetables. Use a TakeAlong or Easy Find Lids container to store any cut vegetables.)
I like to chop up tomatoes and keep them separate so I don't end up with a bunch of juice and seeds making my salad soggy. Also, I buy a chunk of lean turkey ham to dice on top or boil a few eggs to store on my Salad Bar Shelf when I get tired of the ham.
My Salad Bar is a huge time saver, convenient, and healthy. This has helped me keep my refrigerator more organized, lessen the likelihood of spoiled food, and fatten up my wallet. Believe it or not, I don't feel the urge to hit the drive-thru after a late night of work or school because I have a healthy, ready-to-eat alternative waiting on me at home.
Some links for healthy eating and keeping a cleaner refrigerator: