Saturday, August 27, 2016

Living the Pantry Lifestyle - Time to take stock of Fall & Winter needs

One of my love languages... as far as showing love... is definitely cooking & baking.  So after a tough week for my son and daughter-in-law, when the baby was in the hospital for two days with a viral infection, I wanted to take something with me when we went over for baby cuddles yesterday.

Along with chili (which can be heated up at any time), I made a family favorite cheesecake with the cream cheese I had bought two months ago when it was on sale.  Don't you love how far out the "Use By" dates are on cream cheese?

When I was mixing the cheesecake batter, I used the last of the sugar in the kitchen canister so it needed to be replenished.  I was shocked to find only two bags of sugar left from when I stocked up last year.  I don't bake nearly as much as I once did but it still gets used faster than one would think. 

This was the second time recently that I was either completely out of something or near the end of my supply.  The other being old fashioned oats and while I knew I had used a lot of the bulk supply, I didn't realize I was using the last of it.

So how can such a thing happen?  It is easy when your pantry shelves are in the garage.  I don't restock most items until the very hot months of July and August are behind us and this year they were hotter than usual. So I tend to not keep a close eye on the few things I buy in bulk until September.

It is suppose to be hot again this week but cooler temperatures are just around the corner.  I know.  The squirrels burying nuts in the flowerpots on my deck tell me so.  This week I'm going through my list of essential pantry items again and making a stock up list, which will be put in order of priority. 

For instance, old fashioned oats will be at the top of that list... as will honey from the Farmer's Market.  I just opened the last jelly jar of last summer's honey purchase.  That was good timing but it only lasted a year because I didn't make as much bread as usual.  As I wrote previously, changes in our home life certainly affect the pantry.

I like to have everything I need in the pantry for our needs and to show hospitality so I don't have to run to the store.  Not to mention should the item be out of the current available budget.  For so many items, it is best to buy on sale and shop the pantry when needed (such as having cream cheese in the refrigerator for a third of the non-sale price).

These days I tend to take what I bake to people rather than have them to our place.  But the nice thing about a well stocked pantry (and having a few favorite recipes), is that the items we need to make a last minute meal or dessert are in the house (and garage), available now for putting together into something tasty.

Once it is cooler, I will be looking through the Rubbermaid style containers, old Tupperware canisters, glass jars, etc. and writing down what I'm getting low on before I run out completely as with the oatmeal.

I'm still wondering if there is a container somewhere that has extra oats in it... but that is the subject of another blog post.  Organization! 


rebecca said...

Old fashioned oats and brown rice are two of my staples (along with, I confess, sugar and flour). I like stock up on tins of tuna when it goes on sale. It came in handy today as I boiled some pasta and cut up celery, carrots, zucchini, and onion and added peas and some zesty Italian dressing for a pasta salad...

Vee said...

All my thoughts about organization these days revolve around nails. =D If only, I'd run out of them!

My pantry is a nightmare, my freezer worse. I have the local Mom and Pop shop on speed dial as it is so easy to just pick up something quick as I finish my day. This, too, must end!

So sorry that the baby was ill. Such a nightmare for new parents. Praying that all is well and stays that way!

Carrie said...

I have meant to comment for years but I really enjoy your blog. Sometimes I go back and read old posts as if I'm reading a book! It is a cozy and homey place on the Internet. It has really encouraged me with my homemaking and parenting on limited energy. Thank you! I don't have time to comment much with an active almost-four-year-old and now pregnant with morning sickness! But I love it and check it most days of the week.

Anonymous said...

So sorry to hear baby was so ill...but hopefully she is now on the mend!! Oh my...nice of you to fix food...but chili for a nursing mom?? Oh dear...hopefully only son will be eating that!!