Archive for the ‘Basics’ Category

I recently had a bit of extra money.

Okay, so it wasn’t “extra” I wanted to spend it on food storage but I didnt decide until I was thinking about pressure canning a little over a week ago. My father in law gave me a couple of pressure canners about a year ago. I have been putting off using them because they are old, and the guages are daunting. I was afraid that they would be off, and they way that my pressure canner gauges is different than my smaller new one (or any of the others I see online, except the ones that are antiques like mine.)

For several months my father-in-law, then my guy told me that they would get me pressure gauges but they never seemed to get around to it. Recently one of my prepper friends told me that I should just test my All American Pressure Canner, because they are very reliable and accurate. I also found out that they sell everything to replace all the parts on their website.

So I test it, although I have to adjust the temp often and tap the gauge occasionally to ensure its accurately telling me the pressure it seemed to be working very well.

After I tested it, when I made the chili, I didn’t have to adjust the temp on the stove as often, I think it may be a matter of getting used to it, finding what works with your stove, and with your gear.

I digress.

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I haven’t liked ground beef in a really long time, as long as I can remember actually, maybe 15 years atleast.

I will eat it though, I will eat a burger from time to time, especially if they are made at home. I will make tatter tot casserole and even meat loaf.

Recently in the last 6 months or so (I got a meat grinder (actually I got 2, a manual and an electric one, YAY!) I stopped buying ground beef at costco and started buying bulk meat (they sell 3 packs of eye of round roasts and rump roasts and such) so I get the eye of round roasts. Then I get them home and grind them before I freeze it.

In the last year there has been a scare over pink slime. Even when I make something like meat loaf or burgers if I post pictures on facebook (which I do a lot, and D makes fun of me for doing it) I almost always get comments like, I can’t believe you would eat that, don’t know know what pink slime is, how gross how could you even consider eatting anything made out of ground beef.

First of all, after watching a bunch of Penn and Teller Bullshit about hippies who want to inflict their idea of organic and fresh food on the world has skewed my views. America as a whole is VERY spoiled and can afford to be because there are grocery stores everywhere, there are so many safety standards and before these things were made public MANY of these same people at the very things they are crying out about now, probably because they liked them so much.

In the end. I know what pink slime is, it is beef (or another type of meat but in this instance we will say beef) thecuts of beef that are not wanted or the left over bits and they are run through a centrifuge and then the meat bits are seperated from the fat and the meat it then cleaned with ammonia and water (I don’t know they recipe of that mix or how long they are mixed or soaked for and then they are ground either into what looks like ground beef or ground into finer bits and then ground into regular hamburger, in this country up to 70% of the ground beef in our country contains up to 15% of pink slime. They don’t have to tell you or even mention that there is ammonia in the beef that your purchasing.

Honestly, I don’t think it will kill anyone, if anything it makes it more affordable and doesnt really taste very different.

The thing is, for me, I don’t like the texture of ground beef and I believe that this was before they even started adding pink slime to regular grocery store ground beef. When I order from fast food, I always get fish or chicken. Yes I have see the videos about cod and about chicken nuggets, I am an adult. I don’t need the lecture.

In the end I prefer to grind my own beef because the texture is very different to me and I like it a lot better. I cut it into manageable chunks and then I grind it, fat and all, I grind the fat because I think its important to have fat content in ground meat, it holds up better and tastes better, but since I use eye of round roast, there isnt a lot of fat to begin with.

I will post a bunch of pictures, after the jump.

I am also going to post a picture of a baby shaped meat loaf. I am going to do this because it was freaking funny, and I got a lot of jokes that will really offend a lot of people but my friend posted a picture similar several months before and he messaged me and asked me to make it for him for his b-day as his present and instead of a cake, so I did it. I figure it will be the only one I will ever make and I think it is the only one I will ever make. I am an alternative type person and I thought it was funny. I did grind the meat for that as well.

By the way, grinding your own meat (good, lean meat) is not much more expensive that buying it and the cost of a grinder is under $100 and if you don’t have the money for that, find the cut of beef you like (even at Wally World) and ask the butcher (unless its super late at night, pretty much any normal sized grocery store has a butcher)  to grind if for you, it doesnt cost any more to have it ground, it will still be the same price as it was in the roast shape. Only small groceries or specialty butchers will charge you to grind meat, and even then, not often. I have even asked the butcher at the chinese food grocer to grind pork or chicken and they do it for no more than the cost of the meats weight.

Sorry if your offended by the meat loaf shaped like a baby…. It really was hilarious, men do love their meat.

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I am not a huge fan of going without deodorant. I don’t like smelling either. I don’t think that the commercially available “all natural” stuff works very well. I stock pile deodorant and toothpaste just like I do food and water, but just as I mentioned in my post about going without shampoo… Its a good idea to understand the basics of doing it an alternative all natural way with products that you will have on hand anyhow. Right?

I cant remember where I found this recipe. I have tried the recipe, and used it. It worked all right. I think that I have friends who are really much more into the Granola side of things than I am and I know that this along with a few other homemade things would be an awesome gift for them, especially if you knew what scents they really liked. This is really cheap probably $2-3 a batch.

The recipe I have used is

3 tbs Shea butter

3 tbs baking soda

2 tbs cocoa butter

2 tbs corn starch

1/4 tsp vitamin e oil (or you can puncture and drain 2 or 3 gal caps of the same)

1/4 – 1/2 tsp essential oils (Whatever scents you like)

You CAN add 1-2 tbs of vegetable glycerin or bees wax to make it softer if you’d like.

Microwave the Shea butter and cocoa butter until melted, mix in the cornstarch and baking soda, mix until smooth and then stir in the vitamin  e oil and the essential oils.

Once you’ve completely combined, place in a 4 ounce jar, which is perfect for this recipe. Put the contents into the fridge and let it set for 24 hours. If you make more than one, leave the one you will not be using daily in the fridge.

The deodorant should be melted by rubbing the amount of a pea in your hands to soften and then wiping onto your under arms. If its a warmer day they mix will already be somewhat softer but if you chose not to add the bees wax or glycerin it may be a little harder (it will still soften it you warm it up thought.

It worked for me, though I couldn’t trust it on a sleeveless black shirt. I noticed that it left a noticeable residue, but it doesn’t stain.

Sorry I didnt take any pictures of this, but you can find them if you do a search online I think, I have seen them.

It looks milky and off white, kind of like a light colored cocoa butter.

Even though this isn’t my cup of tea, it worked rather well and I would rely on it if need be. Its always good to be prepared with alternatives.

So I tried to sprouting before, sort of. I  talked about it before “Oregano Sprouts” But they died.

I bought this sprout pack and seeds like 3 months ago I think. Never used it because I just hadn’t had time. Till now.

So here is my adventure in sprouting, that actually worked! “I didn’t kill them!!!” (I have such a black thumb)

So here’s what we start with.

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Rotation is very important.

When you have several months or several years of food, you need to make sure that you are using the oldest food that you purchased first. This idea is called First In  First Out or FIFO.

So how do you keep track?

Well for me, I don’t keep my food storage in my cabinets upstairs, I don’t have food cabinets in my kitchen, I only have a pantry and thats chock full of spices and open food (half a bag of rice, open flour, things that have been using or plan to use within a day or two) Everything else I have is in my basement. I am always running down to get this or that from my stores, or sending the kids to fetch something.

So how do you keep track?

I have seen several methods that seem like a good idea.

Keep relative loose track and write dates on everything. This works decently if you only have a few months of food storage. writing the dates down helps you to keep everything lined up with the oldest upfront.

Another idea I have seen is to write down on a list every time they remove something from the store of food, this works okay if you only have short term food storage (less than 6 months) and most of it is located in your kitchen, and is easily arranged, because you know to replace it, I don’t see how it helps you to know its the oldest.

ALWAYS write the date, no matter what method you choose.

My canned food is lined up, I havent had the ability, time, or money to purchase or make a can rotation system yet. So what I do is I have everything in single rows, sometimes 3 or 4 high, when I buy more of anything I push the column back, which means that the oldest is in the back, when I go to get something, I walk around to the back of the shelf and pull from that column in the back, the cans arent facing me, but generally I don’t have a problem getting lost on what I am picking up, this works for boxed food as well.

When it comes to things like Rice, sugar and wheat, I don’t even bother buying smaller amounts all of them are in 25 pound bags or 5 gallon buckets (it is my plan to have them all in 5 gallon buckets, I just havent been able to yet, but thats for another article) I don’t rotate these stores though, I just add on top, they have huge shelf lives I make note of when they were purchased and I don’t worry about them, they don’t have a 12-24 month shelf life like canned foods would.

Now, I have not implemented this next idea but it is the one (for me) that is the best idea. This is the rubber band idea. In this scenario, what we would do is place a wide rubber band around the newest box of pasta or can of chili or whatever it is, and  rotate forward, when you reach the product with the rubber band, work it to the more recent newest and so on. The reason I like this one, is because I can see it working really well for my boxed goods, because eventually I will not have the ability to walk to the back of the shelf, I will have to rearrange my shelving units because I am again running out of space.

Another options that I can see is color co-ordination. get colored post its or stickers of letters or whatever I actually really like the idea of the letters. when you purchase a batch of any given product as your organizing and getting ready to put it up, check to see what color or letter the oldest product has on it, then add another color (maybe the next in the rainbow) If your using colors you may want to write down some where obvious what your codes or order of your colors are for your kids or hubby.

This is all confusing. I know. Food storage feels easy to me but I have done hundreds of hours of research. If I am not clear on this, if you would like clarification on rotation, or anything else I wrote for that matter, please comment and I will get back to you.

The most important thing, is writing the dates on what you buy. Even if you only store food in your cupboards at least you will be able to see how long something has been stored there since you purchased it.

You should keep records either online or on paper, I recommend on paper (You can print forms to help you keep track) Only in case you are unable to use electricity for some reason. A lot of people will add their rotation, and their inventory online, and once a month or so print out their excel sheets or inventory sheets. Its really up to you.

This is not about food storage exactly but it is about self sufficiency,  and about knowing how to take care of yourself and your family.

The reasons that people generally state that they want to go without Shampoo are normally the organic type (or as I grew up calling them “granola“) and they want to lessen the chemicals in their lived or they want to be, well, more organic.

So the idea behind the “no poo” movement is that by eliminating shampoo and allowing your hair and scalp  to return to its original state will eventually give you the end goal of being able to wash your hair with water alone.

So how is this done?

Some people will sprinkle dry baking soda in their hair, comb it through and then rinse in the shower after allowing the oils of your hair to soak into the baking soda.others will use baking soda and water as a paste (approximately one tablespoon baking soda and one half teaspoon water.) Another option is 2 tbs of vinegar in one cup of water. You can use them both also.

Another way that others have tried (or started rather) is using less shampoo over time and shampooing less often until shampoo is eliminated completely.

Some people say that it is a very small inconvenience, others say that it was an oily mess. I have seen the no shampoo thing work. I knew a bunch of granola’s when I was younger and not using shampoo was just the tip of the ice burg. But I know, it is possible for it to look and feel clean even though its only been washed with water.

But for the most part in my opinion, it looks gross, and feels worse. Hygiene is so important to me, and being deficient in that area is unacceptable.  obviously I see that this movement has its need, its time, and its place.  But while I can appreciate this movement, I don’t plan on actually doing it myself. Unless I absolutely had to, its important to know how to do things like this. Really.

Also, in my research, people have said it takes them anywhere from 3 weeks of no washing to 8 months before the oil in their scalp evens out. Most people who stuck it out, say that if you just stick it out, it makes it worth it.

Here are a few things I’ve found that are all natural that can help clean and/or  condition/improve hair health of your hair.

Burdock: root helps prevent dandruff

Catmint: leaves encourage hair growth and soothes scalp irritations

Chamomile: flowers soften and lighten hair

Flannel Mullein: lightens hair

Goosegrass: tonic and cleansing, helps prevent dandruff

Henna: red hair dye and conditioner

Horsetail: non-fertile stems and branches strengthens the hair

Lavender: antiseptic, antibiotic, stimulates hair growth, and degreases

Lime: flowers clean and softens

Marigold: lightens hair color

Nasturtium: for hair growth

Parsley: enriches hair color and gives a nice luster

Rosemary: tonic and conditioner, one of the best herbs to use, gives luster and body, also slightly darkens the hair. (This is good to use if you notice your hair lightening due to baking soda use.)

Rhubarb: the root makes a yellow hair dye

Sage: tonic and conditioning, darkens the hair

Southernwood: encourages hair growth and helps prevent dandruff

Stinging Nettle: tonic and conditioning and helps prevent dandruff

Witch Hazel: leaves and bark are astringent and cleanses oily hair

Most recipes using these herbs call for dried or fresh, you can boil it into a tea and infuse it into your rinse routine (or make it a rinse all by itself). The oils will work as well, but make sure they’re pure, and use very little. A few drops can go a long way!

~~~

Sometimes things just aren’t working. I found this list of trouble shooting techniques:

Long Hair:
Comb your hair from scalp to tips before you go into the shower to loosen dirt and detangle. You may need to use a bit more baking soda in your mix (one tablespoon per 250mls/1 cup of water. If you need more, use two tablespoons and two cups, or three tablespoons and three cups. Don’t overuse your baking soda, or you will end up with dry hair! Less is more.)
Frizzy Hair:
You’re probably using too much baking soda, or leaving it in your hair too long. Try adding honey, or rubbing a little bit of moisturizing oil onto your hair (coconut, jojoba, sweet almond, extra virgin olive oil…).
Greasy Hair:
Some people experience an adjustment, or “de-tox” period of greasiness as they transition to no-poo. Do not over-wash, it will pass soon! If you’ve been using your routine faithfully and experience greasy hair, try using less ACV in your rinse, cut out honey if you’ve been using it, try switching to a citrus rinse, or use a comb instead of a brush to style your hair.
If you have greasy hair and need a quick fix on a day when you’re not washing your hair, try applying a tiny bit of cornstarch to your scalp and combing through to the ends. Remember, greasy hair does not mean dirty hair, it probably doesn’t need to be washed!
Dry hair:
If your hair is very dry, you may have used too much baking soda and should lesson the amount. You may also need to use more ACV in your rinse. Also, try smoothing a tiny bit of oil into your hair either after you shower, or in the morning. A tiny bit is all you need. Coconut oil works well, and smells great!
If you find your hair is chronically dry, and you like the idea of a hot oil treatment every so often, you can follow one of these recipes, the latter is best for dry hair and the former is a hot oil treatment for occasional use :
– 1 teaspoon soybean oil
– 2 teaspoons castor oil
Combine ingredients then warm on low heat. Massage mixture into the scalp and hair. Wrap hair in a hot towel for 15 minutes. Shampoo & rinse out.
– 1/2 cup of dried rosemary leaves
– 1/2 cup olive oil
Combine ingredients then heat up until warm. Strain. Coat the entire scalp and ends of hair with the oil mixture. Wrap hair in saran wrap and a towel over that, leave on for 15 minutes. Wash hair twice to remove the oil. Use this treatment twice a month or when your needs a deep conditioning. Leaves your hair shiny and rehydrated.
If you want, or need the occasional deep condition, especially if you have very long hair with breakage at the ends, you can try a mix with one small jar of real mayonnaise and 1/2 of an avocado. Mash them together in a bowl with your hands until it’s a minty green colour, then smooth onto your hair. Put on a shower cap, or wrap your hair in saran wrap and leave on for 20 minutes before thoroughly rinsing clean. If you’re using this only for the tips of your hair, or for very short hair, half the ingredients.
If you swim regularly in pools, or have very chlorinated water you may find your hair dries easily. To help prevent chlorine damage after you’ve gone swimming, try mixing one egg, one eggshell’s worth of olive oil with one quarter of a peeled cucumber. Blend together, spread evenly onto hair, leave in ten minutes and then rinse well. See also [I have hard water!]
If you regularly blow-dry, stop! Scrunch with a towel and then let your hair air-dry. Curling, straightening or kinking your hair using hot irons can also attribute to drying and breakage. You can also try using a boar-bristle brush to brush your hair with, this will distribute your hair’s natural oils evenly. Though be warned that you don’t need to use it all the time, and using it too much might actually make your hair feel more oily then usual!
White Build-up:
You’re probably using too much baking soda! Remember, you only need one tablespoon per cup (250mls) of water, for long hair, you only need a maximum of 2-3 tablespoons. It doesn’t seem like much, but it goes a long way. For easier distribution, keep a little cup with some baking soda in the shower and take a pinch and apply to wet hair, then rub in.
Itchy hair/scalp:
Try infusing your rinse with tea tree, rosemary or lavender essential oils (only a few drops at the most!) Try changing your rinse routine. Add a bit of honey, try a rosemary tea rinse… experiment! For itchy scalp caused by build-up or dryness, try adding a few pinches of brown sugar (not white, as it will dissolve) to your wash and rubbing it through. Be sure to rinse thoroughly. If you use any oils on your scalp (like jojoba, or coconut), stop and see if that makes a difference. See also [I have hard water!]
Dandruff:
Skin cells flake and slough off the body all the time, normally skin go through the cycle of dying and being replaced once a month. If this process is sped up and the skin cells aren’t removed, you get dandruff. Although the real causes of dandruff are still unknown, most theories involve the sebaceous glands being plugged, or overproducing.
To help control dandruff you can use a mild acidic solution on your scalp, before shampooing, about twice a week.
– 1/2 cup Water
– 1/2 cup of White Vinegar
Combine ingredients then apply directly to the scalp. Use before shampooing. Apply twice a week.
If you’re using any oils on your scalp (coconut, jojoba, etc – not essential) stop and see if that helps. Also try adding some brown sugar to your baking soda wash and massage it into your scalp to help slough away flakes. Don’t use white sugar, it will just dissolve.
Limp or weak hair:
You are over-conditioning! Cut back on how often you use a conditioning rinse. If you’re using hot oil treatments, try going a little longer between them. Think about which moisturizing ingredients you’re using in your routines, and cut back where you can.
I have hard water!
There are several things you can do if you have hard water, which can be very drying and cause damage to hair. If you can afford to install a water softener, which range anywhere from a few hundred to over a thousand dollars, have it done. If you can’t, use distilled water or boiled water to wash your hair with. It won’t remove all the impurities, but it can make a difference.
Here are a few recipes for making your own hair spray and hair gel.
Hairspray:
1/ Chop 2 lemons, add 2 cups water, and simmer in a pan over low heat until lemons are
quite soft. Cool, then strain through cheesecloth. Pour into a spray bottle, add 1 Tbsp.
vodka, and shake. Dilute with water if too sticky.
The vodka ensures it lasts a long time.
2/ Chop one lemon (or an orange for dry hair). Place in a pot with 2 cups water. Boil until half of the initial amount remains. Cool, strain, and place in a spray bottle. Store in the refrigerator. If it is too sticky, add more water. Add one ounce rubbing alcohol as a preservative and then the spray can be stored for up to two weeks unrefrigerated.
Hair Gel (#1 is not vegan, #2 is):
1/ 1/2 to 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1 cup warm water
Dissolve gelatin in 1 cup warm water. Keep refrigerated and use as you would a purchased gel.
2/ One cup water
2 tablespoons flax seed
1-2 drops of essential oil of your choice.
Combine the water and seeds in a small saucepan, bring them to a boil and then remove from heat. Set aside for a half hour. Strain through a colander. When completely cooled, add the oil and mix through. Transfer to a wide-mouthed jar with a tight lid (mason jars work well!), and use as you would any other gel product.

since I decided to start taking pictures, I thought I would photograph some of the things I make a bunch but never take pictures of.

I’ve started making bread pretty regularly. I only buy bread now occasionally out of convenience or from the bakery, pastries and such that I don’t want to bake or hotdog/hamburger buns which never taste right when I bake them. (always to heavy)

The recipe that I am using today:

(Sorry the picture isnt perfect) Its on page 75 in “The Bread Lover’s Bread Machine Cookbook”

I did adjust the recipe slightly and I will talk about the small changes I made and why…

Hopefully you can read the recipe above or have the book, the recipe I used was:

1 1/8 cup water

2 eggs

5tbs butter

4 cups flour

1 tbs wheat gluten

1tbs dough enhancer

1tbs sugar

2 1/4 tsp yeast

2 tsp salt

This is for the 2 pound loaf.

This is my bread maker.

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Its only a 6 quart but I am excited about it.

I like to cook, I think that mastering (or striving to master) your arts is always important.

I want to pressure can food. But I think that an important aspect to that is being able to pressure cook first.

I also think for canning homemade stews and chili it will be nice to be able to pressure cook it and then take the finished products and put them into canning jars and process them in another much larger pressure canner.

I’m looking forward to it.

Back in February for D’s birthday I bought him a really nice camera since the last one I’d purchased (which wasn’t uber nice but was easy to use, functional and took nice pictures) was taking out to the range for target practice and was accidentally left in a box full of magazines and by the time it bumped its way home in the back of the truck the screen was cracked.  But I digress. I am making a new goal to start taking and posting pictures of my new adventures. Although I may not be perfect at it, it is a goal.

I’m actually quite a shutter bug and I love taking pictures while we are out and about but with little things like cooking and sprouting or whatever, I just don’t think about it… So now, I will try.

I’m really excited!

So this totally isnt my idea nor is it my pictures.  But I found this while bouncing around looking at easy tips for getting started with gardening.

I am of the mind that you should start on a small scale if you don’t really know what your doing, buy books, do research and talk to people.

The reason that I think that this is such a good idea is because you can do it in your house, near any window and its a cheap easy way to get started with gardening.

The page I found this on was an untitled document page. I don’t even realize that anyone could see it. I’m not trying to take information from anyone’s page (If you know the address that this page came from, please let me know and I will give proper kudo’s, its just that I found this at work, saved all the pics and data and emailed it to myself. Its easier than making notes (which I do a lot, but notes are time consuming) Bookmarking ar work is difficult because I cannot research further from home.

I appreciate finding things like this though and being able to share it, I think over all it enhances the ability to share without having to charge anyone for what I find, and it makes it easier for people just starting out to find all of the information they are looking for without finding snippets of information in 100 different places (or more).

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So you have made up your mind to start food storage…. Start Emergency prep and now you realize just how much it will cost… Then you wonder, how on earth do you afford to even get started…. Living pay check to paycheck having to get a little less of the normal grocery list when you want to change something up… So what do you do?

First of all I challenge you to think about how  you spend your money. I live paycheck to paycheck and I know that most people do. But I have also managed in approximately 5 months to put aside about 3 thousand dollars on my food storage.

Write down for a solid week everything that you spend money on, every penny. What your bills are, if you spend a dollar on a vending machine. All of it.

You will be amazed at how much money you spend on things that aren’t really necessary.  For me its the vending machines at work. I have a huge weakness for diet soda. So once, sometimes twice a day I will spend $1.25 to get a soda. I could save a wicked amount of money just buying the soda in 36 can cases for like 10 bucks.

Try not to go to the drive thru when its been a long day, go home and make something easy. (Think about spending a few hours every Sunday and making a few extra meals, either casseroles or maybe make some tamale or  burrito filling or at least cook up some extra protein (chicken breast, roast beef, brown hamburger, precook dry beans) If you atleast cook the meat/beans in advance you will make it so much easier and faster to prepare dinner later in the week when you find that you might be tempted to stop and buy something simple.

Oh! and buy your kids water bottles. My kids preassure me to go to drive thrus MOSTLY because they are thirsty, so I bought them all water bottles, they carry them everywhere and I have snacks in the car that arent affected by heat for 6-8 weeks at a time.

Drive thru costs me somewhere between 30-50 dollars. We have 5 kids. It gets spendy.

I am by no means saying that you need to stop going out to eat. Just plan and budget for it.  D and I have started having dinner out after his radio shows on Thursdays and we go out about once a month to something else, may it be shooting or fun with friends. Going out isn’t a specific amount of money but it ranges in the budget, its planning for it that matters, especially when we spent about  $400 dollars a month.

Stop spending money for a week. I challenge you to think twice about what you are planning on spending. Pay your bills, buy your gas, go to the doctor or buy medicine if you need it, but don’t impulse buy, don’t run to the store for things that you don’t need. Think about your needs and plan them into it.

There are things aside from that that you can do to save money… and I am not talking about being frugal, just planning. (I’ll talk about being frugal some other time, right now its more about making plans)

So save your change, don’t spend it randomly, for the most part you wont notice that your missing it. Save it and spend that on your food storage. Buy appliances for food storage one at a time. Research and become comfortable with its applications before moving forward to the next one.

Another money saving idea is gifting. I give away jam. I think that is what I am going to do for Christmas, I want to start buying jars and gingham ribbon now and give all of my good friends jams and fruits for christmas (I know I am a jew and I don’t really care about Christmas, but I actually don’t have jewish friends  and I think its more about family and gifts rather than religion, I give my children gifts for christmas.  It’s fun. I like giving my friends gifts and you know, if you ask for the jars back,  you spend almost nothing on 8 oz jars.

I saw another website in my research who had the great idea of saving money by gifting emergency preparedness pamphlets that had been homemade, which MIGHT be a cool idea, IF your friend had shown interest, but for the most part my friends just think I am a little insane and kind of make fun of my for being kooky and a “hoarder” but since I am not easily offended I just think it is a little funny.

Giving someone instructions or a pamphlet on a plan would be the same as someone giving me a business card thats good for one free orthedontic consultation because they think that my teeth are crooked…. I would be like WTF where the heck is my real present. Its offensive.

One other idea that isnt really about being frugal but being able to put money aside for foodstorage is just buying an extra coupla cans of food or a pound or two of beans everytime you go to the store. I do this all the time, I actually never go to the store (even for a gallon of milk or a dozen eggs) without buying a coupla cans of soup or veggies or something or beans, cous cous or a few bags of extra wide egg noodles… (and so on) just an extra 2-3 bucks. Its always something that is on sale.

The thing about buying stuff on sale is that you save money when you DO buy it, but its not about giving up thinkgs you like. It means that if you buy a case of canned corn when its on sale, you wont have to randomly buy 2 or 3 cans at a time when you do need it, it will already be in your stores.

The reason that I think buying stuff on sale is SO amazing is that once my storage is fully stoked with more than a year of food, I will only be in replenish mode and wont ever have to buy anything except for fresh foods (fresh veggies, fruit (in season) and cairy and such and other things that are on sale.

you can do it.

If you have any questions or would like additional tips, let me know. :)