Met up to pair with Mike again today. We definitely made progress. We used dummy data to test the normalize and check for matches functions. We ended up using Mike's code that was previously written for that. No RegEx! No need to reinvent the wheel.
I think we will use the Context API to save the shopping list data and check that list for duplicates before adding a new item to the database.
I have a technical screen tomorrow. It's done by pair programming, so I feel like I got some good practice in today.