Saturday, October 3, 2015

Pantry Challenge #40 ... 2015

(Our Sam's Club find this week was this set of Despicable Me drinking cups/glasses.  They were on clearance for $1.91.  I know someone that this will make a good Christmas gift for so after we purchased it and brought it home, into my gift trunk it went!)

This week has been all about preparing for Hurricane Joaquin and the major rain event that was to hit our area before the hurricane.   Thankfully, Hurricane Joaquin was a non-event for us but I can’t say the same for the major rain event.  We are two days into it with 2 more days predicted and already we’ve had 10 inches of rain.  Other than flooding, there is also danger of trees toppling and power outages with as much rain (coupled with wind) that we’re getting.

Here are some things we did this week to prepare for the possible hit of a hurricane and for the major rain event.

Set 5 gallon buckets out to catch rain water for flushing commodes.   We are on well water so, when the power goes off, we have no water.   Having a generator helps lots, but for those times when the generator is not running, we would need water for flushing toilets.

Fill propane tanks.   This is for our gas grill … one of our methods of cooking when the power goes off.

Fill gas cans to run our generator. 

Fill auto with gas. 

Cook snack foods that don’t need refrigeration … things such as granola, healthy cookies and bars, etc.

Freeze ice bottles to go in cooler.  This will help keep things that need to be cool, cool!  You could also place these in the refrigerator for those times when the generator is not running.

Do laundry.  When we lose power, it’s usually for an extended period of time so we want to make sure that all our clothes are clean.

Check generator to make sure it’s running and that it has everything needed to operate.

Check supply of paper plates, plastic ware and paper towels.  I keep a tub of these on hand to use for those times when we have a power outage. 

Charge electronics.  This is important because if we lose power this is the only way we have of communicating with family and others.

As you might guess, there are several things on my pantry to-do that didn’t get done this week …

My to-do list from last week:

Harvest herbs … Done!  I harvested comfrey, lavender, spearmint, peppermint, plantain, lemon balm and sage.

Make Gwen’s bread … didn’t get done!

Get a jar of cider fire started … didn’t get done!

Make some elderberry syrup for cold and flu season … didn’t get done!

Shop sales and loss leaders … did not do this!  We had to replace a commode in our half bath this week so all unnecessary spending has stopped for the rest of the month.

In addition:

My husband trimmed my hair for me and saved us at least $20.

I saved money by letting the herbs that I harvested dry naturally instead of using the dehydrator.

I added 2 boxes of canning salt to my pantry.  I used the last of what I had canning peanuts last week.  This is a staple in my pantry!

I divided a 25 lb bag of plain flour up into gallon size zip lock bags to go in the freezer. I got 10 (1) gallon bags from the 25 lb bag.  After they’ve been in the freezer for a couple of weeks, I’ll take them out and put them in a tote for long term storage.

I stitched up come dishtowels using a thrift store table cloth. You can read about it Here.

I added to the compost bin.

I started back earning swagbucks.   While traveling, I wasn’t able to keep it up, but now that we’re home and settled back in, I’m back at it.

I completed a Pinecone Survey.

I added change to our change jar. 

Here’s my pantry to-do list for the upcoming week:

Make Gwen’s bread

Get a jar of cider fire started

Make some elderberry syrup for cold and flu season

Vacuum seal 25 lb bag of sugar in quart jars

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

A Working Pantry

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  1. How long can you store flour for long term storage.
    Thank you

    1. Sue, I've had good success with storing it as long as a year.

  2. After reading your list, I'm tired for all you do! I just love reading your blog.
    Can you tell me what "Cider Fire" is?

    1. LaurieS, here's a link that explains what it is and how to make it ....

  3. I like your preparations for the rain/flooding. I've been watching the flooding for the east coast and praying for you all. At least it's good to be forewarned about what is coming. We went out yesterday and cut more firewood for the winter, and we will need to cut much more. A wood stove is what I am counting on if we lose power for heat and if I need to cook on it... I'm seasoning cast iron pans!

  4. Been doing lots of canning lately. Have put up a grand total of 58 quarts of assorted pickles and 3 pints of pickle relish, 10 quarts of spaghetti sauce with more tomatoes ripening. Next will be harvesting and canning beets. I'll need to find some ideas for green tomatoes as I know we won't be able to let them all ripen when the temps start dropping. Also been harvesting and drying lots of basil, oregano, rosemary, parsley, and mint.

    Take care.... hugs, Sandy


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