Firstly during the last fortnight I managed to:
Add surgical masks to my first aid kit. The ones you wear to avoid picking up air borne germs. I looked in the chemist and saw they really don't keep many. So in the event of even a really bad flu they would sell out of these fast. So I am buying enough for everyone to have a few on hand.
I added lots of jars of homemade jam to my pantry. Fig, plum, strawberry and peach. Except for the strawberries which were very cheap all the fruit was free so this cost me the cost of the sugar only. On Monday I wrote about all the things that you can do with jam! Thank you for so many extra ideas and recipes. It is very handy stuff.
I re arranged things so that my kitchen cupboards contain the things I constantly use, a couple of everything at least. Then the cellar can be the things that last a long time and duplicates. You know when you start moving things how it has a domino effect? Well, it made a mess but the end result is much better!
In my kitchen cupboards, which aren't large, I freed up some space. I packed up all my cake making and cup cake making things into a giant tin. Patty pans, sprinkles and those kind of things. It gave me a whole small free shelf in my pantry. I had this tin and it says "cakes" too.
I also made a little bit more room by getting a big jar, bigger than fits in my pantry shelves, and using it to store pasta nests. These nests are Jamie Oiliver pasta and we love them. They are a bit of a luxury but my non pasta loving husband happily eats these. But they take up a heap of room! So now I have this lovely huge jar full of them on my counter.
We made a decision. First we need to build up our emergency fund but then we are going to get a rain water tank. We have room for a small one or even a couple but we think we will get 1000 litre one and it will be a few hundred dollars. This would be more water and easier and better than trying to store enough bottles of water. Our rainfall is reasonable too. I think this would be a good investment. I think we can get our emergency fund looking better the first half of the year then we will get the tank at the end of the year, all going well. It would be a massive improvement on our water storage and reserves.
Then I added goods. This last fortnight I added powdered milk x3, pasta, honey x4, tinned milk, beans, soup, pasta and rice. (and the surgical masks)
My last picture is for Patsy. I have been following her series on A Working Pantry. It is fantastic. Last week she posted a picture of her trunk that she uses to store future presents in. I wrote and told her I have a huge trunk and it is empty on the verandah at this point. I found it on the roadside... I really love it and need a plan for it. So Patsy here it is.. I am not sure if I should paint it or just clean it up and oil it... or what. But it has a lot of potential! I think of pirates treasure every time I look at it!
Speaking of A Working Pantry...in part 4 of the current "This is Why" series Patsy talks about the ways we can shop that help fill our pantry. Point 18 she says she sits and studies the fliers/brochures before she shops. Every week I study the specials of my main store and I get that brochure delivered online on Wednesdays. BUT we get a lot of junk mail and mostly I don't read much of it. I think the sheer volume of it is off putting. But today I sifted out the things I know I don't want ie furniture brochures and electrical and made a small pile of possibly interesting ones. Then I made a drink and sat and went through them properly as tomorrow I will be shopping. It was worth it. I found four things we use and need on major specials, a $10 voucher I can use and a recipe that I loved! I would have missed out on all of these! Thank you Patsy. So this will now not be overlooked. I only need to do it properly once a week as most brochures come at once. This will help me stock my pantry!
Last fortnight I had my eyes opened to how a contamination in one countries food can create shortages world wide. This fortnight we saw this again here with a whole heap of berries contaminated with a life threatening disease! Now I am thinking in terms of stocking up these in incidences show how easily something can go wrong with food supplies, safety etc. Also again I see the most massive amounts of snow in areas of the US! I look and think I so hope those people are ok and have been prepared. My eyes have been opened!
How have you been going? Any step big or small is a step! We are like ants gathering in. In fact the other day I went to the letterbox and there were ants everywhere. The whole path was covered in busy ants. I think we all see that at times before a storm. They seem to be working frantically. They somehow know the storm is coming. I stood and watched them.... and it hit me. I am seeing exactly this scene around me and amongst my blogging friends and around me too. And I have never noticed that before. In years gone by I noticed at times there were various bursts of activity (ie remember the millennium bug?) but in my life I have never seen so many people suddenly feel it might be wise to be prepared. Maybe I am just aware of it now? Or maybe somehow like the ants we just know it is time? I don't know but I have been thinking about this as to me it seems the "ants" are busy. Has anyone else noticed this?
Your progress, thoughts and ideas are making up a major part of what we are learning. Thank you so much. After the ideas on what to use jam for post kept coming in I am amazed at what a good thing jam is for our pantries... it has far more uses than I even ever imagined! What a gem!
What have you done in the last weeks to increase your preparedness and build up your pantry? We are building up an insurance policy and a buffer against unexpected events.
"when it snows she has no fear for her household" Prov 31.21