There is really nothing exciting going on here at all. We've been dealing with the snow, then yesterday it decided to warm up and rain, THEN today it gets cold again...oh joy, ice. Even though a lot has melted, there is still around 10" or more. I'm really getting the itch to start garden plans, but looking out the window at snow reminds me that we have plenty of time until we can plant. I love winter, but hate this part when I just want it to go away so I can get outside.
I've been getting a fair amount of side work and odd jobs, so we've done a fair amount of shopping to restock the pantries and freezer while we can. We've gotten so much in fact, that this weekend I'll be cleaning out a closet in one of the spare bedrooms and converting it to pantry #4. I'll need to build some good strong shelves as we've decided to start buying more canned goods than we origionally considered. In the odd chance we have a bad crop of green beans or tomato's, we'll still have some on hand. I know we generally do really well with the garden, but there is always that chance. And besided, canned goods can last 5-10 years. We'll have plenty on hand for that "just in case", and we'll have plenty so the kids can come here to shop as they do quite often, and not cut us short at all.
We stock all the store bought items by ONLY shopping sales. We get the ads in the mail, go through them, and make a list of who has what we want, and how much we will be saving over regular prices. We watch for general sale prices, and always watch the buy one/get one sales. Some of these aren't that great, but some are. For instance, Saturday we bought buy1/get1's on kielbasa, smoked sausage,and roasts. The savings were pretty substantial, so we got 2 each of the kielbasa and sausage (getting 2 each free) and one roast (getting 1 free). We found boxed cereal at 5/$10, (regular 2.89 each) so we saved $4.45, plus the ad was buy 10 and get 3 free gallons of milk. We gave the kids 5 boxes of cereal and a gallon of milk, put the rest of the cereal away, and put the other 2 gallons of milk in the freezer. With milk going for 2.29, we saved $6.87 on it, plus the $4.45, making a total savings of $11.32. The second store had an unadvertised "one day sale" on peanut butter, normally 2.89 each, for 1.88. We bought the limit of 6, even though we had just purchased peanut butter at the first store for a sale price of 5/$10. (you can never have too much peanut butter lol) Between both stores, we saved a total of around $90.
Nothing we bought was anything we were out of or needed right away, but we took advantage of sales and got it anyway. Buy buying at sale prices and stocking up, we're saving even more in the long run. The regular price could rise, as would the sale price,and we'd have to burn gas to get to the store to get whatever we were out of. If I don't get back to work full time anytime soon, we'll already have food like we did before, which saved us a LOT of money over the past year. We have no intentions on slowing down on food storage, even if I was to go back to work full time tomorrow. It didn't take long to realize how much money we had saved, and how much having food on hand saved us from going hungry, or having to choose between the electric bill and groceries. Nope, we won't slow down at all. In fact, when I do get back to work, (which may be the end of this month or early march), we'll step up the storage. This economy is unstable, and so is the availibility of construction work. If something would happen and I would end up layed off again, even in a year, I don't want to have to worry about food at all.
We've started do store other things here as well, mainly pertaining to the bathroom and medicine cabinet. Storing these things makes as much sense to us as storing food; it's better to have it than not. We started with the usual things-TP, soap, toothpaste, razor blades, shaving soap, shampoo, etc. Now we're taking it into medicines and first aid. When we realized a month ago that we were out of ANY kind of aspirin/excedrine and Lisa had a headache, we started getting things a little at a time. Now we have everything for headaches to sunburn, from an upset stomach to poison ivy. Once again, I'd rather have it here, and don't want to make that unnecessary trip to the drug store for drawing salve or pepto. When I get a full list completed and stocked, I'll post it here.
I know I have posted a lot lately on preparadness, and I know that some of my regular readers don't do it themselves, or understand why. But, this is something that we are growing in as much as our homesteading or living simple. It's just another aspect of our lives that I choose to share with everyone. We aren't just about growing vegetables, or raising chickens, or making our own household cleaners and soaps, any more that we're just about being prepared. We live different than many people do, some say simple, and some say complicated. There are many sides to us, all of which we are very passionate about, and I share all of those sides with all of you. I just write these entries with whatever happens to be in my head that day....and today it was again about preparadness and food storage. Tomorrow could be chickens, lol. I never know where my head will be.
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