Thursday, January 28, 2010

Three Month Supply

So, I know that it has been a looooong time since I posted. All I can say is that once I got pregnant all my energy, time and motivation completely hit rock bottom. Then the holidays came. Now I am trying to get back on the ball. :)

For those of you who came (or did not come) to our Relief Society meeting a couple weeks ago, I thought I'd post the highlights of the short presentation that I did on getting a three months supply of food. (on 3 month supply)

"Build a small supply of food that is part of your normal, daily diet. One way to do this is to purchase a few extra items each week to build a one-week supply of food. Then you can gradually increase your supply until it is sufficient for three months. These items should be rotated regularly to avoid spoilage."

A three month supply isn’t necessarily all of your wheat, beans, oats, powdered milk, etc.. It is simply a well-stocked pantry of foods that you use on a daily basis that will keep your family fed if for some reason you could not get to a store to do your regular grocery shopping for about three months.

I found this great blog as I was researching this topic:

This is some of what she had to share:

Where can you start? What can you buy? This is all about you. What I buy, your family might not eat! Make a list of meals you normally eat. Which of them have a basis of frozen or shelf-stable foods?

Some ideas:
Pastas and sauce or ingredients for sauce,
chili (canned or homemade from dried beans) and cornbread (from a mix or grind your own corn),
Rice and chicken with frozen veggies.

There may be items you can't store for three months. Ask yourself if you could still eat the meal without those items (sour cream, fresh veggies) if there was an emergency where fresh food wasn't available. If the answer is yes, store it!

So when I make my plan to store food for 3 months, I plan foods that will last at least a year. I plan 6 each of 14 dinners, but we eat those meals over the course of a year. You might want to plan to eat your meals every night. In this case, your foods need only last 3 months. (clarify)

I also store basic pantry items in three month quantities.

I store oatmeal and pancake mix and syrup, and cold cereals for breakfast. We don't eat this every day, but we could if we needed. The kids like them.

The problem is how to remember to replace what you have used. I determine a number of units, 1 unit higher than I actually need, and replace the unit when 1 is empty. For instance: I store 8 jars of peanut butter, because I need 7. Before I throw out the empty PB container, I write it on my list for the store. I always have nearly 7 full jars on the shelf.

What it requires (that many people don't want to invest) is time and thought. (

Here are some tips that I got from

1. Buy what you can afford
2. Buy what you’re familiar with
3. Buy foods from warehouse stores (this can depend on pricing. . . sometimes there are better values and sometimes not).
4. Organize your buying for three-month increments (once you have your three month supply, start working on another three months, then you will have your 6 month supply, etc. until you get up to a full 12 months.

And lastly, here is some info from

1 - Know What you Need!
Make a recipe list for two weeks- including breakfast, lunch, dinner and 2 snacks. Write it down. Think of EVERY ingredient you will need to make those meals.

2- Shop Smart!

-Case Lot Sales
-Only buy meat when it is on sale.
-I would not recommend buying a lot of things at Wholesale centers (Sams/Costco) - however - their prices on cheese cannot be beat. I have also found yeast, and most baking supplies to be the cheapest here as well.

3- Rotate Through your Meals

Now that you have a great supply of food that you know you will actually eat - Eat it!!
-Go through your list and make your recipes. I always buy my produce when it is on sale. When you check your newspaper for deals - check out the produce section.
-Be sure to add in fresh fruits and vegetables to your meals. You will be doing it, knowing that you saved money!
-Whenever you take something out of your 3 month food supply - write it on a sheet of paper that you have near your storage area. This way you have a general idea of what you need to replenish when the next sale comes. You will be eating your food, and nothing will spoil.
-Don’t feel like you can only eat what is on your recipe list - now that you have a ton of food - get creative. Share different recipes with family and friends.
-Don’t forget to add in everyday essentials like soap, toilet paper, paper towels, toothpaste, shampoo etc… You can get these items for great deals as well!

Best of luck to you all!!!

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