This week we are looking at keeping spares and back ups.
The photos in this post are from you all! I love seeing your baking, produce and creativity!
Rachel making Ravioli.
Do you notice how home baking just looks so beautiful? So I try and share these pictures as I think they are inspiring!
Maria made fruit cakes.
I wrote this whole post yesterday and my computer shut down and I lost the lot! So I have had to start again!
Ok, finally, on to our subject!
And Maria's gorgeous baking!
A couple of weeks ago I had written to Laine as I remembered how she kept spares of things like electrical appliances in case something broke down. She couldn't remember which letter that was in either! But now I have found this reference in the letter "Getting out of Debt" (this letter is full of good money saving tips and well worth reading) This was the paragraph I was looking for:
23) If possible, I do buy ahead on needed items. Especially when the price is right. Remember when I wrote recently how I found an iron in great condition for only $2.50 and a vacuum in likewise condition for only $7.50. I love to pull out a back up when something really needs to be replaced. It is wonderful to tell my husband, "Oh, don't worry, I have another one."
I am pretty sure this was mentioned in other letters also as Laine was a great one for garage sales (and still is!)
And she still keeps spares! She shared with me how she loves backups! Her daughter in law was getting rid of a food processor. Laine took that and now her own food processor is breaking so she is glad to have this replacement already! And she still keeps a spare vacuum and was able to help a daughter in law out when she needed one! Really nothing has changed since Laine wrote that post in 2002!
Last week Laine included the keeping of spares in her list of tips...
6~ I love to shop at garage sales, the deals are really great. (The next best place is thrift shops.) I was looking for a waffle iron and found one last week at an estate sale, just the one I was looking for! But I did search for months. If I find something really inexpensive and I already have one, but I use that item a lot, I will buy it as a back up. I actually had a back up for a waffle iron, but I like this "new" one better as my back up didn't get as crispy as I would like.
Rachel having a cook up!
Buying things that we know we are going to need and at great prices is just such a big money saver! So many things that we use everyday have a limited life and will need replacing. Having a back up that we got for a few dollars could save us hundreds!
I have mentioned before how I continually see blogs and websites that suggest the exact opposite of keeping spares and to throw away your spare linen and towels and so on as they make your cupboard look cluttered. They post perfectly neat pictures of a linen press with almost nothing in it. Now we all know nothing is easy to keep tidy, this is true! But what if there is sickness in the house, or the washing machine is broken or the power is out? Or in my case what if the kitchen floor floods!? Believe me some spares are a good idea!
Jane's baking and beautiful produce!
When I talk about minimalism I am not talking about keeping a clean and organised home. I am talking about the "throw out everything you don't love (and certainly have no spares) trend".
This trend assumes you have the money at any time to go re buy what you just threw away if you need it again! Pantries are even likely to be considered clutter.
Mimi's beautiful turnovers!
Last week I couldn't resist and commented on one of these kinds of posts. Flying in the face of enthusiastic throwing away I mentioned what if you were sick and not up to washing and others were sick too? Wouldn't spare sheets be rather handy? And since we use linen constantly and that it wears out wouldn't spare sets be handy to replace worn ones? And since it is expensive wouldn't this save money? I went on and said if it really is worn out linen makes great hankies, cleaning cloths, dusters...
I have probably been kicked out or blocked by now!
Some of Cookie's garden produce!
The argument is to get rid of anything you don't just love. Things are supposed to speak joy to you or you ditch them. And people fall for this in droves.
Now, I do not like to wear a coat. I do not love my coat and it doesn't spark joy. This is for sure.
However in winter when I go on a car journey I take my coat. If my car breaks down and I am waiting on the side of the road in the freezing cold something will happen.... I will suddenly LOVE my coat! 😊
While this trend is ok with an ugly vase people are extending minimising to things like being able (or not) to feed your children in an emergency as it is thought food storage is clutter.
This is why I love Proverbs and the Proverbs woman. And why I love the word Prudent! It is prudent to have emergency supplies and to be able to look after your family in times of sickness, shortage, storms and so on. It is our job!
So here we are stocking out pantries, trying to get ahead, be prepared and even have spares!
With thrift shopping, garage sales, give aways and regular sales we get chances to pick up things at amazing prices! Yet have you noticed how if something breaks down and you need a new appliance
it is usually urgent, you have limited time and no bargains are to be found! How nice it would be to have a spare!
Anne's Sour Dough Bread. She just got started when I offered starter recently!
Look at her amazing results already!
Some spares are really important. Like a spare can opener. Others might be an alternative... i.e. if I can't cook on the electric stove I can use the gas BBQ. Or I could use the camp stove. Or we could run the generator and I can boil the kettle or use my electric frypan.
Anne's bread rolls.
I think we can safely say you are doing wonderfully with the sour dough!
Last week I was so pleased to find a new (to me!) quilt and quilt cover in a huge size. I am so happy to have these spares. And remember last year when I found huge pure wool cream blankets? What a find!
Thrift stores are great for finding all kinds of useful back ups. And there is something else... many older things are better quality than the current equivalent.
In the same way I am watching for the best deals on groceries and working on my menu planning and so many of Laine's tips I am watching for wise buys that would be handy spares.
On my list now I have:
Cast iron cookware. Especially a dutch oven.
Stove top kettle. (for use the BBQ)
Jaffle maker (for toasted sandwiches on the coals)
Big tins suitable for bulk flour.
Billie (for campfire tea)
Leather boots for Andy.
And any of the main electrical appliances. Remember when I found a brand new washing machine on the side of the road? We kept that in the shed and sure enough one day my old washer died! To replace it cost us nothing! I knew I saved $800 that week as I looked up the price of my "new" washer. I have to say it was great knowing I had my back up waiting!
Do you keep any back ups of things you use regularly? What could be good things to watch for n your travels?
With the electricity crisis we are having here I constantly look at things that need no electricity. I found a nice old hand mixer recently as that would be so useful. Also I would like an old carpet sweeper!
I hope we all have a good new week! The sun is shining and I just saw the wholesale butcher has Lamb Shanks for $1.80. Guess what's on the menu!