Sunday, March 1, 2015

Pantry Challenge #9 ... 2015

Can you believe that March is already here!  Where did January and February go?

This has been a week full of the unexpected which wrecked havoc with my nicely laid out plans!  It’s okay though; I’m just rolling with the events and will do the best I can.  Sometimes, life is like that, isn’t it?  We have to be flexible!

So, what did I get done in my pantry … let’s see!

My to-do list from last time:   
Make turmeric capsules.  Didn’t get done!

Check on the status of the collards and hopefully can them!  I’m afraid the collards are a no go!  I may be able to salvage enough for a meal but it looks like between the weather and life, they ruined in the garden.  This makes me feel wasteful and I don’t like that!   I’m glad that we have enough canned to get us through another year but you can be sure that I will make every effort to do better next year! 

In addition:
I needed butter so I went to the freezer part of my pantry and pulled some out. When butter was around $2/lb in November and December I purchased several and brought them home and froze them. I’m so glad I did!

I did the same thing with a gallon of milk.  I had run out so I pulled a gallon from the freezer part of my pantry.

We were invited to a birthday dinner for a young lady who was celebrating her 98th, yes 98th birthday.  I asked what I could bring and was told that she really liked pound cake.  I told them I had a recipe for a really good one and would bring it.  The recipe calls for a box of yellow cake mix so I went to the freezer part of my pantry and removed one that I had purchased on sale and frozen some time back. The only thing I had to purchase was 8 oz of sour cream.  Can I just say it again, I’m so glad I have a well-stocked pantry!

I enjoyed  kefir smoothies this week made using the organic fruit we got at Sam’s Club for $.51/bag that I told you about in this post.  I can get 8 smoothies from each bag!

Our Working Pantry Facebook group has a ‘Just One’ challenge each week and my first challenge was to make at least 100 vitamin c capsules.  I got 80 done instead … didn’t quite meet my goal but it’s better than none at all!

We did our monthly shopping this week and purchased the following: 

Plain flour (this one 5 lb bag will be enough to last us for 6 – 12 months)

A bulk bag of mozzarella cheese.  I will divide this up into 1 cup portions and freeze them.

A large tub of sour cream

2 large tubs of cottage cheese

4 lbs of sausage that we will get 8 meals from
and  2 cans orange juice concentrate

Our Sam’s Club “find” this week included ...
Vitamins ... the price ... $.81!  We purchased a year's supply!

These 2 bottles of spice blend ... the price ... $.81 each!

These cans of Campbell's cream of chicken soup for $5.01 per case (8 cans).  We purchased 16 cans.  The price breakdown for each can is $.63.
With a temporary reprieve in our current financial situation, I’ve started focusing on building back up the areas of my pantry that are in need of restocking.  This week I added 2 cans of evaporated milk to my pantry.  Normally 12 cans is a year’s supply, but one of the things that we have learned is that by stretching and getting more resourceful with the basics, we used more.  So I plan to double that 12 and turn it into 24 which means I have some work to do to get it to that level.

I’m getting ready to place an Amazon order using the gift cards I’ve earned the month of February doing Swagbucks.  (Look for a post later in the week on ‘how we’ve earned extra money for February’ which will include  Swagbucks.)

I finally got the Christmas cards we received this last year turned into gift tags for use in the next Christmas season.   I used my Sizzex machine and die cuts that were given to me as a gift several years ago.  (A link to the Sizzex machine I have can be found at the bottom of this page.)

I got to go to JoAnn’s Fabric this week!  I haven’t been doing much shopping at all during the past 3 months and especially not something as frivolous as a trip to a fabric store.  There were a couple of things I needed in order to finish an outfit I’m making for my newest little granddaughter.  The lack of these things had caused the project to come to a standstill.  When I found out that we would be making a trip to the airport in a larger neighboring town I asked my husband if we could go a little early and let me go to JoAnn’s Fabric. He said yes and even tracked down a couple of coupons I could use while I shopped.  I found what I needed and was able to use the coupons my husband found!  It was a nice treat!

We've started saving our change again and currently we have $10 in our jar.  Normally this would go toward Christmas, but considering the financial cloud that is hanging over our heads, we’ll save it to be used as an emergency fund.

Here’s my pantry to-d0 list for next week:
Divide and freeze the bulk bag of mozzarella cheese we purchased last week
Make Turmeric capsules
Check the local sale ads for bargains  (It sure is nice to have grocery money to work with again!)

Now it’s your turn, what have you done to build up your pantry or live frugally?

A Working Pantry

This post contains affiliate links.


  1. I found a great buy on canned salmon-1.89/can. I bought all 18 cans they had. I will purchase 20 lbs of Italian sausages for the freezer. I use only 2 large ones for every batch of spaghetti that I make. They are on sale for 1.99/lb. Apples are on sale for .50/lb. I will purchase several pounds for eating. We will make a trip to Sams this week and I will look out for some of those great buys you found!

    1. Apples for $.50/lb ... that is a great deal! You found some good bargains this week yourself. Shopping at Sam's Club is very hit or miss and the deals don't last long when they have them. Be sure you go early and look closely at the shelf tags. Good luck!

  2. Hello Patsy! If this post showed up twice I'm sorry! Darned Computer!!!! You found some more great deals at Sam's. I still haven't found any but we don't get there early enough I guess. But I still love The Hunt! I was wondering what Turmeric capsules are?

    1. Hi Saundra! Turmeric capsules are powdered turmeric put in a capsule. I purchase turmeric powder from The Bulk Herb Store and make my own.

  3. Hi Patsy! Our local Winn Dixie had a 10 for $7 sale, so we stocked up on some canned vegetables; they also had a very good deal on their butter and Daisy brand cottage cheese (much cheaper than Wal Mart) where we usually buy it. We stocked up on the butter and bought several containers of the cottage cheese as we do eat it often. We also save our's amazing how much it can add up in a year's time! ~ Marsha Elllan

    1. Sounds like you found some great sales! Thanks for commenting!

  4. Hi Patsy, Great bargains this week! About your collards don't see them as waste chickens need greens too. I have done no shopping other than to get a newspaper for coupons and was given 4 more free. We got a lot of snow this week so I kept filling clean buckets and when I ran out of containers to fill I started using the water in my washing machine and since I have rusty water and snow isn't my whites came out beautiful! I am going to browse the ads as I am in need of a few things. The big thing is the financial problems haven't stopped! Someone didn't just use my social to file a tax return they are using my identity for other things as well and somehow cleaned out what money I was able to put in the bank! We sold some bigger items and it would have been enough to pay the bills for at least 3 months and it takes awhile with identity theft to get resolved and it can be 6 months to a year to get our tax refund! I was so frustrated the one day I could do nothing, but put my head in my hands and lean on the counter and pray. I have a few navy beans in a bag and I am going to try to sprout a few and if they sprout I am going to plant the rest in my garden and increase my dried bean storage! We took 3 bags of stuff and donated it to Goodwill so yay more space! I have a bunch of cans I hope to turn in this week and use that money for gas. Did you check out the Monterey Chicken recipe I posted on the FB page? It is very tasty and lower-carb I served it twice I considered the second time like eating leftovers. Haha! I finished another tutu with materials I had and I am getting ready to start another this week. I hope you have a great week Patsy!


    1. Vicky, I am so sorry! I will be praying that this whole mess is straightened as soon as possible. Let me know if those beans sprout, that's a good idea!

  5. Haven't gotten much done since last time, but every little bit helps. Finished canning the last of the pinto beans this Sunday. Ended up with seven quarts and two pints of beans, and seven pints of chili, with the cost of hamburger right now it ended up being about the same cost as store bought. I did make four reusable Swiffer 360 duster clones from flannel, found a pattern on Pintrest, will make a few more since they are messy to wash I want enough to make their own small load.

    Take Care.....Hugs, Sandy

    1. Sandy, can you share the link to the pattern? I would like to make enough to do the same thing!

  6. Here is the link Patsy, she has quite a few tutorials and even one for the Swiffer floor duster.

    Take Care.....Hugs, Sandy

  7. You got some really great deals. I like buying in bulk because I spend less and need to shop less often.

  8. Patsy, where would you recommend I get capsules for making turmeric capsules. My husband has three forms of arthritis and we all know what those meds can do to you. He took himself off of his arthritis meds and I have been doing research on coping with it naturally. I have even started our old dog on turmeric, brewers yeast and flax seed meal in her food and it has helped her a great deal. (Guess I wanted to practice on her before I started on hubby - ha ha).


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