Do you ever feel like this economy thing is never going to turn around? I think we may be looking at sustained high prices for food maybe from here on in. You buy a box of cereal that is the same price but it is barely the size of a book. Food costs affect us all. You have to eat.
Around here we have been tying to beef up some of our food storage. We do not have a nice walk in pantry. I have to deal with the storage in a 50s house. We did add the cabinet below in our service porch for more storage. We had other items in here before and some paper goods and we moved them somewhere else. Constant editing and reorganizing to find better ways to store more. That is my song. Here you will see we have lots of snacks. I stock up when I find deals but we having been buying more items that that are quickly going up.
We all know corn prices are skyrocketing due to wide spread drought. They say this will affect 75% of the food items you buy. We have been stocking up on extra oil, flour and grain products that are basics in so many meals. We had to spend an unexpected large amount on one of our older cars this week and also have two college age girls who we wrote check after check for this month. Whew! We are on one of our self imposed spending fasts. Food and gas is all we are buying for the next two weeks. If we cut back on all other spending we can rebuild our checking account faster. So to provide meals seven days a week three times a day, for six people, it takes a lot of food. Pantry basics are vital to cooking meals economically. Breads, muffins, soups, cookies are all items that fill tummies and can be made so much more cheaply from scratch.
I really want to beef up my supply of pastas and canned tuna and other meats. We are also learning to eat more meals without meat. I mean when an average sized beef roast is $17 who can afford that. I am finding mark down meat even harder to find as others are snagging them up as quick as it gets put out. Many are finding it hard to stretch the food budget.
Tuna Noodle Mac is a great easy filling dish that can be made from pantry staples. I will make a huge bowl and we will eat it with some cut up fruit for a quick dinner and there will be enough left for lunches the next day.
This of course is not all my food storage but just some of it. I am looking into freeze dried items like veggies to have more long term food storage and more variety on hand to create entire meals.
Besides food, I am stocking up on the basic cleaning supplies for the home made cleaners I make on my own. My Homemade Laundry Stain Remover is really a great all purpose cleaner. I used it on the kitchen floor the other day and tonight I used it in my van to deep clean all the crud off the doors and cup holders. Worked great!
So gas is rising again and food prices are rising even higher. One thing we did wrong this summer was to keep our garage fridge plugged in. With hot temps, the amount of energy to keep it cool in a hot garage did not make it worth the small supply of bargain meat I had in there. It will be cleaned out and unplugged for the rest of the summer and not ran in the summer ever again. We left it unplugged last summer and it really helped with the electricity bill but we were attempting to stockpile some meat but for about half the difference of running it, I can just buy meat on sale and keep a small supply in the house freezer. Lesson learned.
Here is a link to a post I did in the Thrifty Living Series that links to a lot of former posts I have done on stretching your grocery budget. Next on this topic is where I shop to find the best prices.