So my first challenge is to make things and have the motivation of meeting in a group regularly to report what I achieved and what I am working on. Just to make whatever I can with what I have or what comes my way. To set things to good use!
This challenge adds on a bit more.
I am not the least bit inclined to eat down our pantry or reduce our preparedness in any way. The opposite in fact. And as for clutter that is actually useless, ugly and space wasting we just didn't move it with us when we shifted so that is done. There is only so much space in a house and I do not like to feel crowded and I don't like the look of clutter. It kind of makes ME feel cluttered.
But my pantry, emergency supplies, medical cabinet etc are all pretty ordered and enclosed and I value all of these more than money in the bank. Mind you we are also working on our emergency fund and actual money in the bank too.
I am turning my attention to things that need to be used or or they will be wasted as they will be losing freshness. Things I can set to use and at the same time save money which can be used to invest in building up the pantry or the emergency fund.
Some things that come to mind are mixes I have made i.e. enchilada mix, cream of chicken soup mix, butter chicken spice mix..
Others on my list to either use up or not buy are:
Herbal remedies for winter,
Herbs and spices...
As I go I will no doubt spot lots of things that have been hanging around a while and probably should be used up.
Then there are things in the garden. I have spinach and it looks like two million tomatoes are about to be ready, the apple tree is covered and so are the pear trees. I have thyme, basil and parsley in great quantities! Now to set them all to good use. For everything I use up I am not buying and I can stretch the grocery money by a day or two or a week! Just by using things up I can expand the pantry quite a bit and have food to share as well.
Another area we can set things use could be seeds. Get them planted when the time is right.
And another might be appliances that could be working hard for us and be a handmaiden except for the fact we have never studied the instructions and practiced.
Like Laine always said, get all the handmaidens working first thing in the morning! Make them all work well for you! What a help. While you are working in the background the washer is washing, the bread is rising, the dinner is in the slow cooker and so on. Many things are happening at once!
What do you have that could be used up or set to use?
How could you save money by using things up?
Do you have savings goals this year? There is an enormous amount to be saved just with eliminating waste, packing lunches, being inventive with left overs etc.
Maybe you have something you just cannot figure out how to use it up. Could you sell it, donate it or barter with it? This might make it useful and help you stock up or save or help a charity. It might also clear space for more important things.
Sometimes we can find a completely fresh purpose for something. It can be reinvented and suddenly it is useful!
It is a lot of fun to work out ways to turn things to your advantage. The possibilities are endless! So take stock of what you have and begin... this is going to take me all year and some things are seasonal i.e. I will use up my butter chicken mixes when the weather cools down. And right now my hands will be full with using up fruit and produce. We have to prioritise and turn out attention to what needs to be used up today.
When we are using everything to its fullest suddenly the world seems much more abundant!
Very often savings come from a quick review of what is in the fridge. Having a clean and well organised fridge so you can see what you have stops science experiments forming and helps you to see that you do not need to buy more of something as you still have some left! And that tonight is the night to use up something before it needs tossing out tomorrow!
A good sort through the freezer is the same. I often have stashed all kinds of bits and pieces in there and can put them together to create a kind of free meal.
Flylady always says that housework doesn't have to be perfect to bless your family. Well meals don't have to be perfect to bless your family either. Simple nourishing things are just fine. In fact homely old style cooking is most often the nicest of all.
This is the year to quit wasting stuff and throwing money in the bin. To set things to use for your advantage. There are lots of little things that add up to a big difference. With luck our efforts to use things up will increase our skills too. It has a roll on effect as we learn more.
I have one more post then I have set the scene for my intentions for 2019. It has been fun to catch up after not being able to post very much. I always feel strongly to get the ball rolling in the new year.
Have a lovely Sunday! I am off for a drive to Mum and Dads and it is a glorious day!xxx