What do you think our parents and grandparents did before the “convenience” store? What if they ran out of milk for the babies? What about that loaf of bread? The daily lives our grandparents lived was vastly different from what we have settled into today. The convenience of grocery stores was, in our grandparents era, considered a luxury reserved for the wealthiest citizens. The limited number of items manufactured and produced which were sold in retail grocery stores were simply expensive and realistically, unattainable for most Americans. Most families didn’t even have indoor plumbing and mothers sewed clothes for their families for the most part. They washed laundry by hand and read to and taught their children by oil lanterns or candles. Most didn’t have telephones in their homes until later. Comparatively, we have a life of luxury.
Sounds a bit rough, doesn’t it? Well brace yourself, because we well might be thrown back into this lifestyle soon. It could be as a result of many mishaps, be it natural or man-made. And if someone in your household loses their job and your income dramatically decreases, it will feel like the old days, too. It will be challenging for you to keep up a lifestyle that you are accustomed to having and maintaining this for your family.
Considering all these factors, I made a conscious choice to ensure my family’s safety and well-being by learning all the skills I can in growing, storing and preserving food.
Here is a quick list of what I don’t buy from the traditional grocery store anymore. And almost everything on this list is made from products you usually have at home. And if there is something special we want, I can make it myself and can still do it at the most minimal investment of what store brand foods cost.
Flour: I bought bulk wheat and grind my own
Buttermilk: I have a continuous supply I make myself
Sour Cream: I make it myself in my kitchen
Spice Mixes; Taco, Ranch and Italian Dressing: I make it all from my food storage
Laundry Detergent: I made 10 gallons for $3.00! That alone saved me $97.00.
Fabric Softener: I will never use store-bought again
And so much more I am discovering. I will share with you how I make these things and as I learn and try new things, I will share those as well. Learning these things, the old way of doing them, fills me with such a level of pride because I know the health value of serving my family unprocessed foods without artificial preservatives. I know how important it is for us to be able to eat what we all love at without the high cost in a much healthier way. And the ease of doing it is just amazing.
I’ve learned about the value of investing in freeze-dried foods so I have endless supplies of milk, eggs, flour, dairy products and meat that will not ever go bad, at least not for up to 30 years.
Setting up a well-stocked pantry takes planning and detailed attention. But knowing my family will never have to miss or even be shorted a meal for any reason makes this one of the most important callings of my life.