I thought often about my readers this weekend, as we just easily transferred into “food storage mentality” and took everything in stride. Having done it for years means that we are used to smoothly moving right into that, using up the fresh or making it stretch, and then relying on what we have carefully put away. I know, however, from some of the messages I got from some of you over at the Facebook page, things were not as seamless as you hoped, with you recognizing you did not have enough milk, or forgot to get something important like dog food. That is the reason we do these things, is to show us where we might have gaps in case there is a REAL emergency and you need it—which can be anything from a natural disaster, to power outage, to even long term like losing a job and needing something to fall back on!
I promised you that I would be sharing our meals and meal plans with you for the rest of the time, and while each day will not be devoted to specifically blogging about the journey, I will certainly be candid with you. We have enough milk in the house to get through another week possibly with kids, and starting a week from today I will be stretching it further with powdered milk. Since I can my own cheese, and many other items, have a busy garden, and lots of homecanned goods, I know we can weather the two week period just fine with a few adjustments.
I was thinking yesterday though, what if we had no access to water? In this time of year, things are very dry, and while we have a lake nearby, and a Berkey water filter, we have never done a test run on how that would turn out. I am thinking the Handy Hubby and I will be running a quick experiment on that later this week, and seeing how hard it really would be to tote our own water for the family.
So, one of the other things I wanted to share with you is how we roll our leftovers into other meals for the future. I have talked about how we keep a gallon bag full of veggie scraps in the freezer to make soup. While that would not be the best choice during the summer, I know I could put some hot nourishing soup on the table for my family in an hour if I needed to, and if we had nothing else. I also save little extras, like the small amount of oatmeal left in the pot from breakfast, and add it into muffin mixes for the following snack or breakfast the next day. Rethink how you use things, and how you can use them in other dishes! You will quickly find that your grocery bill is going down, as you realize the abundance you have on hand.
I was talking to someone the other day who was horrified at this concept. She has four children, and told me “her family refuses to eat leftovers so she throws them out”. I shared with her some of my ideas and she was “disgusted” Â by the idea. And this was the same person who minutes earlier was talking about how they need to find ways to cut back on the grocery budget because they are facing a serious job loss in a couple weeks! It is hard sometimes to see that, and know that sometimes people can not see the value in something until they have no choice but to experience it, but I think that is in her future.
What about you? What are a few money-saving tips you can share with other readers when it comes to slicing that grocery bill?
Blessings to you and yours,Â
Meal plans for this last weekend through today:
Breakfast was Refrigerator Oatmeal with canned blueberries and cinnamon
Lunch was Grilled Cheese sandwiches that had chicken and ranch added into the sandwich, and the kids also had canned peaches for an addition.
Dinner was Enchiladas, with homemade tortillas, simple rice and black bean filling, canned cheese over the top, and purchased enchilada sauce we had in the pantry. For dessert we made Strawberry bars with canned berries, and a streusel topping.
Breakfast was the rest of the pan of Strawberry bars, topped with some whipped coconut milk topping (just take a can of coconut milk, take all the solid white out of it, and whip it with a little sugar to make a mock whipped cream)
Lunch was the Handy Hubby’s homemade Brats, topped with my new recipe for Spicy Peach Pepper topping (Coming tomorrow), and we sliced up a couple peppers from the garden that were ready for eating.
Dinner is Angel Hair Pasta with Parma Rosa—which is Alfredo sauce, a can of diced Italian tomatoes, can of mushrooms, 1/2 diced onion, and basil. Since Saturday is my baking day, we will also be having garlic bread sticks to go along with it.
Breakfast is cereal and milk (this is something we only allow a couple days a week because cereal is so expensive!)
Lunch will be hummus and chips, with a side of peaches that are home canned from last year.
Dinner is Shredded Ranch Chicken sandwiches (home canned chicken shreds with homemade ranch seasoning added, put on homemade bread buns), a salad from the garden, and pudding.
I was wondering when you eat from your storage, what you do for milk?
we use our fresh milk, and when we hit the last two gallons, we save on of the other gallons and split two in half. Then we fill the remainder with powdered milk to acclimate kids to its use. Once those are gone, we go straight to powdered milk. I blogged about it here: https://thewelcominghouseblog.com/blog/2014/01/04/food-storage-saturday-how-to-store-and-use-dry-milk/
Have fun reading and nice to read a comment from you! 😀
I need to find out how toucan cheese, sounds like a good idea!
I will post about it on Thursday for everyone who is asking. 😀
Heather I have enough cheese to get us through the next two weeks but realized if this were a long term problem I would run out,how do you can cheese? As I use cheese quite regularly I think for sure this is something I want to do. We fared well over the weekend , yesterday our church had a catered luncheon to celebrate our 125th year in the same community so lunch was a no brain er . We only had toast and coffee for breakfast and for supper had leftover macaroni salad,green salad, and leftover steak from Saturday.
We had oatmeal and blueberries from freezer for breakfast and I am in the process of making bread this morning . Lunch will be chicken tortilla soup from the freezer, (took it out last night) and supper will be the last of the steak I cooked Saturday cut up small and made into calzones.Also making coconut cream pie for dessert as I am making bread have ground enough wheat to make some pie crust as well will put some in the freezer but if we had no electricity I am not sure what I would do I guess I would not make extra pie crusts! Anyone have any suggestions?
I make up pie crust packages of dry ingredients and store them in my pantry.
That way all I have to do is grab the bag and go. 😀
Add the shortening or lard and voila, pie crust as needed.
The master mix recipe is in my Master Mix Way book. 😀
Well I feel so silly as I do have your master mix book so will get that done probably tomorrow as I am in the process right now of making cherry pie filling and have some chicken stock to can I have been cleaning out my freezer too but with everything else today I think when I get through with this I am done except for supper which is pretty much done anyway but need to gather some tomatoes from the garden everything is taking so long to ripen this year I have loads of green tomatoes but very few are ripening at a time anyway they will so again thanks for answering and I will make up the dry packets for the pie crusts for sure!
DOnt feel silly. I am very glad you have it. I love cherry pie filling!!!
My gardens are not doing so well this year, which is of course, mostly because I am not able to be out in them like I enjoy doing.
Hugs to you, Pat. Hope you have a great week. <3
Everything went as planned for a no spend challenge. Had recently purchased 1/4 beef and had some pork still in freezer as well as fish. So used up meats on hand. Used last year’s canned produce, so no spend there.
Only spend was I had forgotten to stock up on rabbit food. My only spend for the no spend challenge.
oh yeah, cant forget the animals. 🙁
We probably will end up getting dog food look like, because I forgot about our poor Pyrenees. 🙁
THAT is certainly a gap to think about , thanks for sharing. <3
I’m not participating in the challenge this time but hope to in a future challenge. I enjoy reading yours posts on it and other peoples comments. Since I’m not participating I’m using this time to evaluate what food we do have stored and taking freezer inventory and organizing. I spent Saturday cooking up beef soup bones and then repacked and froze for quick soup starter this winter. I also had several containers of chicken scraps/bones from baked chicken dinners that I froze up and I cooked it all down, boned it and froze as soup base also. I liked your comment about freezing leftover veggies in a bag for future soups….though we usually use our leftover veggies for lunch or supper the next day. We use leftovers all the time and can’t imagine just throwing that stuff out. My main dilemma is dry food storage. I know that I currently rely too much on my freezers. We have a small home and just have a cellar that’s open to the crawl space area and not a finished basement. Living in KS it’s not uncommon to see a snake or two down there (eeek!) and our detached garage & shed get so hot. I really need to come up with some space saving storage ideas so that I can can more stuff and rely on the freezer less.
Wendi, there is a post where we talked about food storage in a small space, and I tell you what, there are TONS of ideas out there on how to make it work in a small house. I know someone who bought under the bed boxes and dried tons of MRE’s, then stored them in those boxes. She had four months of food under one bed. So dont give up too easily. I am proud of you for the steps you HAVE made…sounds like you are doing well!