Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Plan: January through September

A tried and true plan for building up food storage, shared by a mother with young children. A few of her comments are in quotes.
"Food storage hasn't been a terribly practical thing for us to work on until we moved into this house. Now that we have the space we've been stocking up."

  1. Add the weekly item to your shopping list.
  2. Buy the largest amount of each week's item you can sensibly afford.
  3. Replace items as you use them.
  4. If you miss a week, skip to the next week.
  5. Don't get behind. Share your hot buys with the rest of us.
  6. If your family loves something not listed, buy it and store it.

  • Week 1 -- Watch for and buy 50% off on Christmas items, cards, paper, ribbons, etc.
  • Week 2 -- Detergents, bleach, cleansers. Laundry detergent, dish detergent, bathroom, window & toilet cleaners.
  • Week 3 -- Medical supplies: Aspirin, Tylenol, Pepto Bismol, Vicks, cough drops. Whatever your family needs.
  • Week 4 -- Paper supplies: Paper towels, plates, cups, Kleenex, toilet paper, napkins, utensils.
  • Week 1 -- Juices: lemon, orange, grapefruit, or powdered juices-like Tang, etc.
  • Week 2 -- Peanut butter- get your creamy and/or crunchy
  • Week 3 --Solid vegetable shortening and/or oil. Buy both if you prefer, shortening is usually less expensive
  • Week 4 -- Personal products: Soap, deodorant, shampoo, lotions, shaving supplies, feminine products.
  • Week 1 -- First aid kit: Gauze patches, Q-tips, cotton balls, band-aids, Neosporin, Calamine...
  • Week 2 -- Mixes: Cake, pancake, muffin, Bisquick. Purchase or make your own.
  • Week 3 -- Spices and Herbs: Pepper, salt, cinnamon, bay leaves, oregano, taco seasonings, chili powder...
  • Week 4 -- Rice- buy 10, 15, 20 pounds. White, brown, instant
“The first 3 months of executing 'the plan' has made an impressive addition to our food storage collection. ... I've spent more money on it than I planned (between $50-$70 a month — only $10-$20 a week. I was planning for no more than $10 a week, but there are sales. (And Sam's Club).... I feel an unexpected rush of accomplishment when I look at it all. I sleep better on stormy nights.”
  • Week 1 -- Pasta. 5 or 10 pounds. Don't forget the mac and cheese
  • Week 2 -- Dry milk. 40 oz. will make 5 gallons. (And, any self-respecting recipe for white bread will use at least a tablespoon.)
  • Week 3 -- Assemble an emergency sewing kit: thread, pins, needles, buttons, snaps, zippers, tape measure, etc.
  • Week 4 -- Ready Dinners: ravioli, pasta, oriental, boxed or frozen. Get what your family will eat.
  • Week 1 -- 10 lbs. of flour.
  • Week 2 -- Dry soups and soup mixes. Boxes of crackers: saltines, graham, etc.
  • Week 3 -- Jello gelatin pudding mixes
  • Week 4 -- Garden seeds: Radishes are great in an emergency. They grow fast, are full of vitamins and minerals, and are full of water.
“I included that only because it was in the booklet. Even in a disastrous emergency, I cannot see myself being willing to live on radishes. I hope I never have to prove that.”
  • Week 1 -- Safety Items: rope or twine, flashlight, dated batteries
  • Week 2 -- Grate and bag 5 pounds of cheese. Use in casseroles and soups (or everything if you are in our family). Also, buy Parmesan.
  • Week 3 -- Condiments: mustard, ketchup, relish, mayo, Worcestershire, pickles, olives, soy sauce, salad dressings.
  • Week 4 -- White sales! Buy a new thermo blanket, some new pillows...
“I love having our little mini mart downstairs. It is really nice not having to run to the store for little things. Even if it has been a while since our last trip to the grocery store, I can always make due with what we have--a dear luxury as there is no such thing as a quick run to the store when one has two kiddo's in tow.”
  • Week 1 -- Sure-Jell, Certo, Paraffin wax, etc., or buy some jams and jellies. Watch for sales.
  • Week 2 -- Fill those water jugs! Or buy some bottled water.
  • Week 3 -- 72 hour kit week; start it, update it, or complete it…but get it done!
  • Week 4 -- Canned goods. Buy what your family likes and will eat. Chili, soups, canned meats, kidney beans, etc.

  • Week 1 -- Back to school sales. Paper, pencils, envelopes, stamps, and journals
  • Week 2 -- Baking powder, soda, corn starch, vanilla, bullion cubes, cooking spray
  • Week 3 -- Tomato week. Can or buy…salsa, juice, sauce, whole, whopped, paste, pizza and spaghetti sauce.
  • Week 4 -- Do some fruit canning or drying. Or, buy it. Watch for sales.
  • Week 1 -- Vegetable week. Can or freeze lots of vegetables. Or buy some canned. Green beans, mushrooms, corn.
  • Week 2 -- Get dry beans, peas, legumes, etc.
  • Week 3 -- Sweeteners. Honey, Karo, Molasses, brown and powdered sugars.
  • Week 4 -- Iodized salt. It seasons, it preserves, it’s a toothpaste and a de-icer.

Click here for the rest of "The Plan": The Plan: October through December.

Friday, July 18, 2008

What Me Worry? Prepare Instead

When I asked for comments from the sisters on what key areas interested them for SRS, the first answer was emergency preparedness. They asked, “What can I do when a disaster happens and the power goes out and it’s either 100 degrees in the summer or 10 degrees and freezing?” “How can I heat/cool my home... feed my children ... let alone anything else?” One sister asked if we’re all planning to go back to an early pioneer mind-set. If you start thinking of all the “What ifs”, you realize how much we desperately need more information. Thankfully, other minds have been working on these issues. Check Upcoming Events for two “Can’t-Miss” emergency preparedness meetings to be held locally in August. These are both well-known and sought-after speakers, and we get them nearly on our doorstep and for free. Is your head in the sand like mine has been? Mark your calendar and attend one or both of these meetings.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Our First Meeting!

Our first SRS meeting is this coming Thursday, 7:30 p.m. in the RS room. Some questions to consider before you come:
  • What do you hope to accomplish by participating in SRS?
  • What are your areas of interest in becoming self-reliant? (i.e. getting food or preparedness items and/or learning specific skills)
  • What skills have you already developed in becoming self-reliant/living providently? (i.e. sprouting, solar cooking)
As we progress, this blog will become important to us in sharing ideas and thoughts. Until we all get used to it, be patient ..... and check back every so often for the monthly challenge and for upcoming events.