What does a Garden Gnome do when she is not gardening, in the kitchen or doing genealogy? Well the answer might just surprise you so read the entries to find out more. This blog focuses on everything we do to make our house a home. There will be a strong emphasis on home energy efficiency and do-it-yourself (DIY) projects. At the same time there will also be crafts, knitting and crocheting projects along with any other little tips we do to create that down to earth, I want to be here home. Please enjoy your visit :)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Benefits of a Well Stocked Pantry

I recently read that the average family keeps a 3 day supply of food in their home.  That really surprised me!  I am a firm believer of keeping a  well stocked pantry so a fair amount of energy goes into to stocking a maintaining my pantry for a 2 year food supply.  Between the months of April and October jars and jars of home canned foods are added to my pantry as each type of produce comes into season.  Jars of dried fruits, vegetables and herbs are also added.  Mid spring we pick up our beef on the hoof to restock the freezers and a bit later meat from our pig will be added along with a few pieces of home cured meats.  During the nice weather any fish we catch that isn't used fresh is frozen for use in the winter months.  If we're lucky a bit of venison is added to the freezers as well.  Of course I take advantage of grocery sales for staples like pasta, rices, flours and baking needs.  The question many ask of anyone who keeps a well stocked pantry is why?  The quick answer to this question is there are a multitude of reasons so I'm just going to highlight a few reasons why keeping a well stocked pantry is a prudent idea.

  • saves money -  A well stocked pantry saves a considerable amount of money by removing the temptation to eat out or pick-up take-out food.  Home cooked meals and foods from scratch are almost always less expense than eating out or even convenience foods.  In the time it takes to go out of your way to go through a drive-thru for take-out you can easily make an inexpensive, healthier home cooked meal. 
  • guard against inflation -  A well stocked pantry serves as a guard against temporarily inflated food prices that occur due to produce and grain shortages caused by regional weather.  Recent examples of this has been inflated prices for rice and wheat products.  Use your pantry stocks of temporarily inflated food items until the price returns to normal then restock your pantry.
  • garden failure - A well stocked pantry can help lessen the blow of a year's garden failure.  The weather patterns have been changing which has resulted in violent weather in some areas that quickly can wipe out a garden in a few moments.  In other areas gardens have been wiped out by an unexpected frost.  This is one reason why keeping a two year supply of home canned fruits and vegetables is often recommended.
  • unemployment -  Unemployment can happen at any time as a result of a variety of factors.  A well stocked pantry helps to keep good healthy food on the table during periods of unemployment allowing you to focus on finding employment and freeing up money needed for other necessities such as utilities. 
  • emergency preparedness - Emergency situations can happen anytime, anywhere and when you least expect it.  Part of your pantry storage should include emergency preparedness food supplies.  Additional foods that you may not normally use on a regular basis (eg. powdered cheese, powdered milks) should be part of your emergency preparedness food supplies along with any special needs foods (eg. baby formula).  Your emergency preparedness food supplies should be in the amount that could support your family's needs for a full month and should include safe drinking water. 

Garden Gnome