My life is to make everything around me beautiful.

Friday, December 3, 2010

How to Acquire Food Storage

Last year at this time I was trying to figure out what would go prettily on a plant shelf in my living room and would be suited for all seasons since I'm just too old and lazy to decorate with the seasons. I'd rather do other things if possible. So I bought a large vase/urn and started painting things pink to put in it. It has branches, cards, watches, ribbons, beautiful things my group has made me or things I've made and a sweet tutu-ed ballerina on the top. Just a froufrou tree in silver and pink and red.

The ballerina is the tree topper but can't be seen very well from down on the floor.

The snowstorm we had recently is one reason to have food storage. Oh, we also have a generator so if power goes out we'll be fine. But with dried milk we don't even have to worry about anything but fresh salads. We have it all in case of power outage due to snow, ice storms, or anything like that. We're not in a flood zone so not much need to worry about that.

There is no hard way to get food storage; it's all easy. While it looks daunting, it isn't. It can be done. You just have to do it.

What I first started doing is putting the date on the food cans and containers we bought, on the lids we'd put 5/08 or 8/09 or 11/10. But rotate them. I've had to throw out some things because they were so old as to be inedible. Tomatoes are one thing that will deteriorate in a can. I had an explosion in one house because I had not noticed that the can was "rounding" at the top. Tomato sauce all over a certain section of our garage. Not pretty.

On boxes of soap, detergent, fabric softener, I'd put the actual date I purchased it and then when I started using it, I'd put that date to let me know how long it lasted. So if it took me 6 months to use the detergent then I knew I needed 2 boxes, but I'll usually have 3 big boxes on hand. I'm compulsive about it. (There are too many stories from friends about losing jobs and having to live off of food storage or having some of it destroyed in a basement flood. I'm one of those who lost a good part of it in a flood but it didn't take long at all to get it back up to where I needed it.) Buy cans that are on sale but be sure and check the "close date" so they won't be beyond that date before you eat them. I don't ever buy just one can of corn or beans. I buy 8-12 at a time. Just figure out how many cans you'll need for a week or month and multiply that for a year's supply. Don't just depend on pantry items, get freezer items also. I recommend vacuum sealing HIGHLY!!! Foods vacuum sealed in the freezer can last for years with absolutely NO deterioration.

Start collecting soda pop bottles to put water in if you can't get a water storage tank like I have. Just put some aside. Start with a 3 day supply and work up. It's all up to you. Personally, I don't want to risk being without food.

Dried foods also. I have dried carrots, onions, beef jerky, etc. Those work well. You can buy a lot of stuff from LDS canneries. They will sell to anyone! If you have one near you, go and purchase.

Our church recommends the basics for life: wheat, rice, corn, oil, sugar, pinto beans, rolled oats, pasta, potato flakes, apple slices, non-fat dehydrated milk and carrots. Every single one of those items can be stored for 30+ years with no deterioration in food value. Those are the necessities, but I prefer normal food so I have it all stored.

This is a sheet of what we use. I created it as a spread sheet and just put all the items we use on it. We simply went through our cabinets and marked down just about everything in there. Yes, this takes a bit of time but it is well worth it to see where you stand with your food storage. BTW, if anyone would like this inventory, just email me from the address on the sidebar and I'll zap it over to you. That way it's already done for you and you can add or cross off anything that doesn't apply to you. I'd be happy to do it for you. It's 5 pages total. You can just print it off for your own use.
Storage in a bedroom closet with the food storage list hanging on the right side.

Another pantry closet in the laundry room. Some items will go in here soon. I've been rearranging things to make more room for the food.

One shelf is for my painting and cleaning supplies and two shelves will be for food.

We keep the dried carrots, onions, soap, detergents, bleach, etc. out here.

You can store under your bed, but we bought those risers to raise it up enough to put cans under there.

Two bags of potato flakes are under there along with candles, which would melt outside in our summer heat.

Kitchen pantry where I normally keep a good supply on hand.

Candy is essential for periods of stress also, but you can use it to bargain if the need ever arises.

Please understand: we are NOT survivalists, just realists. Hard times are coming. Prices will go up. Food shortages are predicted. You may lose your job or source of income. We just like being prepared. If you do nothing, then you'll suffer the consequences when you could have been prepared. Our church leaders encourage us to be prepared temporally, spiritually and financially. We try to be good Christians by following their advice.


  1. Today's post has been an eye opener for me Connie. I've never thought about the difficulties people face living in adverse weather conditions. I suppose you would have to be well stocked when you live in a cold climate. You are so well organised too!!

    I live on the east coast of Australia with a temperate climate - it varies little all year round.... moderate temps and mild humidity.
    Thanks for the insight.
    Hugs ~ Kerryanne

  2. The whimsey of your arrangement is just adorable. I love it.
    You do have a full pantry.
    Keep warm & hugs to you.

  3. Connie, love the vase you decorated and I must say you are prepared for a blizzards, much like we prepare for hurricanes. As you read already, my back is out, so I go to the hosptial for the epidural next week and the depokote shot has helped my arm a bit. My muscles are weakening so the doctor has ordered me to excercise more, but nothing too rough. It's my arms mainly, because I rarely craft anymore. Yes, I must say, I know what you must feel like and mine was just a minor pull on the muscle. Enjoyed seeing the snow pictures. I'm dreaming again for a white Christmas, but not likely in our climate. Hope you are feeling better. Love and hugs, Pat

  4. Good Lord - I'm absolutely amazed at all your supplies - we couldn't even fit those into our tiny flat: just TWO small cupboards for food storage! Although I wish we could: we've got freak weather conditions here in the UK, and as usual it's taken everyone by surprise so the whole country has virtually ground to a halt. I haven't been out in 3 days as outside the road is like a skating rink. Needless to say, the council no longer has a grit container on the corner of every street, so you could just throw a spadeful down on icy patches. The trains aren't running, neither are the tubes, buses, aircraft etc etc etc. Yet they have more snow in France, Norway, Canada etc - and they all seem to be able to keep their countries running! I despair of our lot sometimes. If it's too hot, everything falls apart as well.

    RE carrots - can they really be stored 30 years???? The ones I buy from the supermarket usually go off after a few DAYS. So you must be referring to canned or frozen?

    RE furnishings, my current bugbear is cushions. I want new covers but do NOT want nasty rubber bits or foam stuffing pads - which they all seem to come with. I have feather, thanks very much, so end up throwing these cheap pads away as even the charity shops don't want them. I wonder why people won't sell just the covers any more?

    Happy Pink Saturday, hope you visit as I've got some recipe cards you might find useful.

  5. I love this..and I am going to link it with my blog when I talk about this..;) thanks for sharing..I went to our "cash and carry" store today..what a fun store..also did my monthly food storage today too.:) feels good to have this on month I am doing a party with shelf relience..can't wait to see what they have to get other stuff as a variety to add to my storage.:)

  6. I think it's great that you have a pantry that's full. I try to keep my pantry full as well, I have a baby storage and I you say your storage is the grandpa of storages:) I work at a grocery store so I refuse to by something that's full price,I always get it on sale and with a coupon. I do love when my kids come shopping at my house,it makes me feel good that I could help is such a small way.


Comments are so nice and I thank all of you that leave one for me.