I'm still doing well on limiting my grocery shopping to once every two weeks and also am loving menu planning! In yesterday's post I talked about how I feel led to stockpile for my family and the needy. Stockpiling would also help me to limit my grocery shopping trips and save money. With a well stocked stockpile, I could stretch the time between major grocery shopping trips even further. Wouldn't it be nice to go to the grocery store only once a month..... or less!!!!
Last Fall I did a couple of posts on stocking up for winter here and here. Many of the items I stocked up on are just now beginning to be depleted. It has been really nice to know that I had many of my regularly used staples on hand.
I've decided that I must love to make lists! I'm always coming up with some kind of list every day. The following are my steps to stockpiling for the future.
1. Decide what kinds of things we need and that we actually would use. There's no point in purchasing things that we don't really need just because they are on sale. I've also learned from experience, there's no point in buying things my family doesn't already like or use.
These items also need to be things that store well, either in the freezer or pantry.
2. Inventory my existing pantry, freezer and other storage areas to see what we need. We need to throw away any old and outdated items.
3. I have cabinet space in my laundry room that is being wasted because it is filled with clutter or other unneeded items. I'd like to organize this space to be used for staples, paper products and hygiene items.
4. I'd like to keep a pantry/freezer inventory sheet in my homemaking notebook so that I can always know what I have, how old it is, and if I need to be on the lookout for more of a certain item.
5. I'd like to allocate a certain amount of money each week to increasing our stockpile. Yesterday I decided I would go to Dollar General on my lunch hour and spend $10.00 on canned goods. You would be amazed at how much I was able to purchase for $10.00. This gave me a nice little start on the stockpile!
6. I'm going to diligently watch the sales papers for unbeatable sales and loss leader items to buy in bulk. I also need to be aware of what the best price actually is for each item. For instance, even though Walmart is not my favorite place to shop, I know which items sold there are the best product at the best price, so I'll make an occasional trip there to buy these in bulk.
This is also true for Dollar General. I know which brands they sell that are good, and offered there at the best price I know of. When I made my $10.00 trip there yesterday, I passed up many things that I knew weren't the best price or I wasn't sure. For example, there was apple juice that was a product of China.... no thanks!
7. This summer I would like to be on the lookout for produce that I can freeze or store. I might even try to do some home canning. My mother has always done this for all her children. She doesn't need to do this, she just likes to do it. But, she really isn't able to any more and I would like to learn this skill. My favorites would be canned tomatoes and green beans. I have a book around here somewhere on this subject. It tells what to do with your surplus garden produce.
One item that stores very well with no work involved is sweet potatoes. Recently I came across some I forgot I had that were stored since last winter. They were still in perfect condition.
Wouldn't it be nice to have a root cellar?!!! You could fill it with all kinds of potatoes, carrots, cabbages, onions, and have a place to store your canned products. I bet some of you have one of these!
8. We are not growing a big garden, although we have plenty of land we could use for this purpose. I'm very interested in a square foot type garden, which I think produces as well as using the row system. Also container gardening appeals to me. My husband has several tomatoes in pots that are really growing fast! This weekend I am off work for 3 days, so I plan to work on this gardening situation.
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