Growing Your Own

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Gardening can be an enjoyable and rewarding endeavor. Regardless of the size of your yard, or lack thereof, everyone has the potential to grow some of their own food. Not only does it taste better, to me, one can be assured of what is on your vegetables (think pesticides and waxes) and what isn’t. It can be a great hobby and pastime that can be enjoyed by the entire family. It can also be a great way for neighbors to get to know each other by swapping bags of veggies. It can even earn you a little money if you choose to sell your excess. If not, you can always freeze or can and help offset some of your food costs through the rest of the year.

Here in central Texas, for the most part, we are in Zone VIII of the USDA’s hardiness zone with just a fraction of the area caught in Zone VII. Either way this is great news for gardening and anyone who enjoyed the 80s and 90s of this past February can attest to our good fortune. When it comes to gardening, I will admit that some skills did not come naturally to me. What I had when I first started out was a lot of ambition and very little experience. Fortunately for me, I also have a great deal of luck.

I say all of this because my first attempt at gardening yielded only a few squash, some cucumbers and tomatoes. It was hardly the robust harvest I had imagined, but due to my good luck (but mostly my wife’s internet skills) we did manage to gather some delicious vegetables. Over the years, I have learned quite a bit about gardening, but far from everything. Some of my education came from plain old trial and error, but most came from sifting through the numerous gardening sites available on the internet.

One driving force behind this site is to focus on preparedness here in central Texas instead of gleaning information from hundreds of other sites. To that end, my vision for this article is to gather as much information about the varieties of fruits and vegetables that grow well here. This is not meant to be a catchall and, disclaimer, I am by no means an expert. I merely wanted to provide some consolidated information and perhaps start a discussion amongst our community.

So, without further ado, here are the varieties of some vegetables that do well here in central Texas.

Tomatoes. Who doesn’t like tomatoes? They are great for salads, as pasta sauce, salsa or just cut up with some salt.

Small: Red Cherry, Presto, Saladette

Large: Big set, bonus, homestead, terrific, bingo and carnival

Summer squash.

Yellow: Dixie, early prolific, early summer

Zucchini. Ambassador, aristocrat, president, senator, sure thing

Cucumbers. The root of all pickles. 🙂

Slicing: Burpless, sweet slice, sweet success

Pickling: Liberty, Carolina, calypso

Peppers. A Texas tradition

Sweet: Bell Tower, California Wonder, Yolo Wonder

Hot: Jalapeno (of course), Long Red Cayenne, Hidalgo Serrano

Potatoes.

Red: Dark Red Norland, Norland, Viking

Yellow: Yukon Gold

Russet: Century Russet, Norgold M, Russet Norkatah

Strawberries.

Annual: Chandler, Douglas, Sequoia

Perennial: Sunrise, Allstar, Cardinal

Blackberries.

Thorny: Womack, Brazos, Shawnee

Thornless: Navajo, Arapaho

Beyond gardening the inclusion of fruit trees on your property may provide some welcome addition to your food supply. While trees obviously take longer to reach maturity, once they do you have a reasonable expectation of getting a yield for many years to come.

Apple. Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Gala, Holland, Fuji, Ein Shemer

Pear. Warren, Garber, Kieffer, Moonglow

Plum. Methley

On that note. I will draw this post to a close. As I said before, I am by no means an expert and this list is obviously not all inclusive. I am hoping that others will join in the discussion to build on the post. What do you think? What varieties of fruits and vegetables have you grown here? What did you have success with and what was a dismal failure? What’s not on the list that you grow and what varieties perform the best? Until next time, take care and keep on preppin!

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Water Preparedness

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Well, well, well. It sure has been awhile and I apologize to anyone who was eagerly anticipating my next blog. I will try to be more consistent in the future. In case you are wondering, I was working on a small booklet, self-published on Amazon, called “Good Water, Bad Water”. Now I am not the world’s greatest writer, but it was a fun experience and I hope at least someone reads it. As the title implies it is about water, which leads me to today’s post.

In a previous post I discussed water, from the perspective of what is in our rivers, stream, and lakes as well as the quality of tap water. I hope that the earlier post was beneficial to some. But what about storing and collecting water? I mean, it is helpful to know what is in water, but from a preparedness perspective, storing water prior to a situation is necessary. I am sure that most people reading this would already agree with me, I mean if you are here, you probably already have water in your stockpiles.

I imagine, though, that there are many people who either do not have any water or do not have nearly enough. I am going to go ahead and say it: If you do not have water stored, you are wrong! Water is necessary for life. To me it is more important than food as you can survive for weeks without food, but only a few days without water.

So, how much water is enough? If you think about it, there is no such thing as enough. No matter how much you have it is finite and will eventually be gone. With that in mind, you should store as much as you possibly can. While a lot of people say you need a gallon per person per day, I would argue that it is more like 5 gallons per person per day. So, whatever amount you have, consider reevaluating how long it will truly last you.

Regardless of your stored amount, you are still going to have to plan for the eventuality that you will run out of stored water. What this means is that, in addition to storing water, you would be wise to store resources for gathering, collecting, filtering and treating additional water. These resources would include plain bleach, chlorine, water purification tablets and filters. Keep in mind that bleach and tablets will have an expiration date and will have to be periodically swapped out for fresh.

Another thing to consider is developing your knowledge. The time to work on skills and knowledge is now, when things are OK, not when a crisis is developing. Do you know where the nearest water source to your home is? How far is it? What is the terrain like? Can you build a still? All of these considerations are important to think about now, before you have an issue, so you are prepared for whatever may come.

 

So, how about it? What is your situation and plan? Are you ready for anything or hopelessly behind? Feel free to comment and, until next time, take care and keep on preppin!

 

 

New Year, Same Old Us?

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Well, it is officially 2018. Happy New Year!

Most of us view the dawn of a new year as a time to turn over a new leaf. It’s an opportunity to make changes to the way we do things, and hopefully changes for the better. But, when you think about it, most resolutions don’t make it past the first day, or to the end of the first month. In reality, most resolutions fail. Psychologically, this could be because resolutions are false promises that we make to ourselves; trying to be better in the face of the same old issues. There isn’t anything wrong with this, I just think the approach is lacking.

Someone much smarter than me once said, “You do not have to wait until New Years to make life changes” (or something to that effect). It’s true, there is nothing significant about New Years to me, other than having to remember to write the correct date. The power to change lies in each one of us regardless of the date on the calendar. So, rather than making resolutions that I know will not last, I choose to make 2018 a year of small changes for the better. Since I really want to focus on prepping even more this year, here are the changes I am going to try to make:

Pay off one credit card. Like many of us, I have credit card debt. Enough! I am going to pay one credit card off this year, probably not the one with the most debt on it, but hopefully not the lowest either. Note that I did not say I am getting out of debt; that would be impossible right now. However, paying off one credit card gets me that much closer to financial freedom and eases some interest payments.

Create better inventories of my preps. I vow to work on being more organized in my prepping this year. I plan to improve my inventories and label items better. This will help me in saving money on making new purchases and also in g that items do not go to waste because of poor inventory.

Get someone interested in prepping. I am not going to force anyone to listen to me spout rhetoric about prepping, but I do want to get one family member or friend interested in prepping. I am a realist though and realize that this one may not happen, however, if someone is interested, I will give them as much information and help as I can.

Grow more food this year. I have had a garden each year with mixed results. I vow now, in January, to begin planning and plotting my garden for this year. I want to take advantage of the entire growing season and have as bountiful of a harvest as possible.

There you have it, my 2018 plan in a nutshell. It isn’t too fancy but I really feel like these goals have more chance at success than typical run of the mill resolutions. An added benefit is that with all of these written down here, I will be faced with them all year long! How about you? Do you have resolutions or goals? What are they? Do you think you will be successful? Personally I hope you are! So, until next time, take care and keep on preppin!

Layers of Preparedness

One of my guiding rules in preparedness is to layer what I have. This is my way of covering as many bases as possible without having a travel trailer with me all the time. This may not be for everybody because each individual and situation is different. I present this information to you simply to allow you to evaluate the system and see if it works for you.

Every day carry. (EDC) I am sure most people are aware of the term every day carry. To me this is the first line of defense, literally and figuratively, in being prepared. I will not bore you with an itemized list of what I carry, however here are a few things that are always with me. A pistol, a watch, a cell phone, a knife, a tactical pen, a survival card in my wallet, cash, small flashlight, Gerber multitool, lighter. These items and the rest represent the most basic level of preparedness for me and my daily circumstances. Every situation will be different; some people may not be able to carry a pistol at work, or at all, but you carry what you think you will need.

On foot bag (OFB). This next element is something that others may or may not have (and I named it). I typically drive to an area and then take a bus to work. From the location of my vehicle to work is about 22 miles by road and about 17 miles straight line distance. Because of this distance, and the potential of something happening while I am at work, I have an “on foot bag” or “get to my vehicle bag” that I carry with me daily. Other people may have different names or acronyms for it, but this is just how I refer to it. These items are augmented by my everyday carry objects but could also stand alone in the event that I lost some of my EDC items. A partial list of items in my bag include: rain poncho, mini flashlight, mylar blanket, drinking straw, fire kit, small first aid kit, spare magazines, hat, gloves, socks, knife and a few other items. I could expect to make it to my vehicle in 6 to 8 hours, barring injury, however, realistically I know that I could end up spending the night on the way.

Get home bag (GHB). Within my vehicle I have a “get home bag”. It is more comprehensive than my OFB and, again, is augmented by my OFB and EDC. The GHB can also stand alone. These items are in case my vehicle is not running or breaks down in the middle of nowhere. Now, obviously a break down does not necessitate me striking out for home on foot, But depending on circumstances such as time of day and location, I may need these items for comfort or even survival. Some of the items in my vehicle include a Sawyer mini, water purification tabs, food, water, spare clothes, tarp, paracord, Gerber multitool, flashlight, Chemlight, mylar blankets, tissue, hand sanitizer, first aid kit, and several other items.

Bug out bag (BOB). I am sure everyone knows what a bug out bag is. I will not list the specific items in my BOB, simply because it would take a lot of space and time and probably 90 percent of my items would match others’ items anyway. All of the basics are covered by my BOB and I only mention it because, in the event that my family and I have to leave, the BOB is coming with us. While the BOB is stand alone, it will still be augmented by my GHB (which stays in the vehicle) and EDC.

Home preps. The BOB is truly the last resort. I do not plan on running off into the woods at the first sign of danger and I feel our home is adequately prepared for at least a few months. This includes food, water, and hygiene items. While we would not be living well, we would be living, which is generally the goal. Layering preps means that my home preps are augmented by everything else as well. So, the OFB, GHB and even BOB provide some support and back up to the home preps.

What about you? Do you have similar layers to your preparedness? Does each layer support and augment the others or are they more stand alone. What do you do differently? Please let us know in the comments. Until next time, thank you and keep on preppin!

 

5 Multi-use Items Everyone Should Have

5 articlesI think it is safe to say that when it comes to being prepared, items that serve multiple purposes are like hitting pay dirt. Multi-use items save space and weight. This especially comes in handy when you have to carry the items in your bag or on your person. With that in mind, I put together my list of five multi-use items that I feel everyone should have.

Poncho. Military grade, camouflaged, water resistant. This is one of the most versatile items you can have in your kit. A poncho can be worn, as it helps keep you dry and traps in body heat. You can make a lean to or tent with a poncho. You can spread it out to collect rainwater or roll up in it for a blanket. If you have to cross water, you can wrap your items in your poncho to keep them relatively dry. There are many more uses, but these are the ones that immediately come in mind. What else?

Paracord. Another great item with literally thousands of uses. Only your imagination can keep you from doing stuff with paracord. You can use it for shoe laces, or to hold up your pacts. You can use it in making your shelter or hanging up clothes to dry. Pull the inner cords out and tie together for fishing line or trip wires. Lift your food or kit off the ground with it. Mend torn items or attach items to your bag. Make a sling or lanyard. There are so many great uses for paracord that I could write a whole article about it but it would be too long.

Multitool. A good multitool should always be by your side. There is a reason the Army issues them for deployments. With all of the attachments on them they can be a lifesaver. Some of the more common attachments are a cross tip screwdriver, flat head screwdriver, can opener, pliers/cutters, wire strippers, knife, saw, bottle opener and a saw. There are many others and different brands have different configurations. A word of advice though, get a quality tool, not something that will break the first time you use it. Gerber and Leatherman make some of the best, but many solid companies are branching into this area.

Handkerchief. For the price of handkerchiefs, you can’t be their versatility. They are cheap enough that you can have many but you can get by just fine with only one or two. Handkerchiefs serve the obvious role of a tissue for a runny nose, but can be used for much more. You can make a bandage or a tourniquet out of them. You can breathe through it when there is smoke, dust or other air quality issues. You can improvise a sling out of one. Tie up your stuff and make a hobo stick. Use it to filter water or signal for help. So many uses that that I can’t even think of them all. What am I missing?

Entrenching tool. This is the final item on the list. Again, military issue is my recommendation, but there are many civilian models available. An entrenching tool is primarily used for digging. This could include a foxhole, cat hole, trench around your shelter or for filling sandbags. But it can also be used to chop small trees or saplings or remove stick and branches. You can fold it at a 90 degree angle and it makes a decent seat. In a pinch an entrenching tool also makes a decent weapon, one that I wouldn’t want being swung at me. This is a great item to attach to your bag or have in the trunk.

And that is my short list of multi use items that I feel everyone should have. What do you think? Are there items here you disagree with? How many of these do you have? And other suggestions? Let us know in the comments. And, until next time, thank you and keep on preppin!

WTF TWD?

Seriously? OK, spoilers below regarding the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead. Do not read further if you have not watched the episode. You have been warned.

Ok, Scott Gimple and TWD creative people. WTF? Are you trying to drive people away? Did you just dump a truckload of gas all over the last bridge and light a match? What were/are you thinking?

I have been a fan of TWD since I first watched the pilot. It is entertaining and fun to look at the scenarios and arm chair quarterback what the characters do. While some people feel you can learn things from it, even if you don’t, you can learn thing to NOT do from watching it. I admit to sympathizing with some characters and feeling loss when a favorite is killed (RIP Glenn, Abraham, Dale, Andrea, T-Dog, Herschel)

Over time the show has evolved from surviving the walker hordes to surviving the pockets of survivors. The walkers (or biters or grabbers) are really just a nuisance at this point, similar to flies and easily dispatched with a knife or other pointy object to the head. The survivors though seem to be getting better organized all the time.

Still my original point remains; WTF? How are you going to have Carl, the person who has grown, literally and figuratively, the most over the course of the show, get bitten by a walker? I understand that Carl’s death may have significant meaning for the rest of the show, but you better prove it to me with the premiere in February. If I am not amazed, I doubt I will finish the season.

Sorry about the rant folks, I just wanted to get it out there and off of my chest. If anyone wants to comment feel free. Thank you and keep on preppin.

Weather and Preps

truck.jpgOk, we need to talk about this. Last night it snowed in Austin, Texas with nearly an inch falling just as the sun was going down. Temperatures dipped below freezing and created some icy road conditions that lingered through the next morning. While this is not a totally unexpected, or unprecedented occurrence, it was something of a surprise; earlier this week it was 80 degrees. For the most part, Texas in general experiences terrific weather. Snow and ice are rare and even cold weather tends to not linger long. As for yesterday, I do not recall at any point in the day, hearing that there would be precipitation at all, much less snow. Now, I understand that meteorologists can’t always get it right, sometimes giant storms slip past them, but I should think that maybe a hint that there might be snow would have been nice.

That being said, I did not come here to rant, but to point out an issue that preppers must take into account and consider frequently. Our preps, especially vehicle and bug out bag, are not static. They will have to be changed at least twice a year with the transition from warm weather to cold and vice versa. Obviously your location will determine exactly when it is best for you to make that switch, but in central Texas, a good time is late March and late October. These are just recommendations, but these two times seem to mark the major switch in weather.

Keep in mind too that I don’t think you need to necessarily swap out items at these times. You may choose to augment until the weather has completely transitioned. In fact that may be an even smarter idea. There is always a chance that a cold front can move through after it has warmed up. If you have already swapped out your cold weather gear it can make for some discomfort to say the least.

Some things to evaluate would be:

Clothing – in the spring get rid of the cold weather gear, fleece cap, glove, and jacket, in lieu of warm weather and shade cloths. In fall put that cold weather gear back in.

Food – Now is a good time to check the expiration dates on your food in your vehicle and BOB and cycle anything getting close to imminent use status.

Water – It may be a good time to replace any water you may have as well. Not that water goes bad, but if you are using water bottles, you can swap out for freshness.

Documents – Do you have personal documents in your BOB? Has anything changed in the last few months?

Batteries – Are your stored batteries getting old? If so, it may be time to rotate them into use and replace with fresh.

Shelter items – Depending on how you prep, you may need to swap out lightweight shelter items for something a little more substantial. Or not, just something to think about.

 

What other items can you think of that need to be checked? A breakdown during a snow storm may be the worst time to find out you still have cargo shorts and a t-shirt in your trunk bag. How often do you go through your preps? Is it seasonal, quarterly, or even less frequently? Please tell us in the comments. Until next time, thank you and keep on preppin!

Books

Picture1When it comes to books, I am an avid reader. I have always loved to sit back and get lost in a story. This is especially true when the writer has the ability to make you forget your own situation and truly become carried away for a while.

I have always preferred fiction and usually have favorite authors. Over the last couple of years, I have tried to read more books that focus on disasters, either with or without notice, as a means to help my own prepping.

What I have noticed is there are three main themes of these types of books. The first, is where some disaster has occurred and mankind is left to its own devices. The second is where something happens and most of the population dies out, conveniently leaving behind plenty of canned food, gasoline, and clothing. The third is a survival situation usually pitting one person or a small group of people against the elements (or zombies).

So, with that in mind, I decided to jot down a few books that I have read that mostly fit into one of these categories. Here they are (in no particular order)

One Second After, William R. Forstchen

One Year After, William R. Forstchen

The Final Day, William R. Forstchen

Lights Out, David Crawford

Alas Babylon, Pat Frank

Inconstant Moon, Larry Niven

Lucifer’s Hammer, Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle

Life as We Knew it, Susan Beth Pfeffer

Earth Abides, George R. Stewart

The Martian, Andy Weir

The Revenant, Michael Punke

The Road, Cormac McCarthy

The Stand, Stephen King

Under the Dome, Stephen King

What do you think? Have you read any of these? Do you have any books that should be added to the list? If so, please list them in the comments. I will make a movie list as well in a few days. Until next time, thank you and take care.

Why do we prep?

Why do you prep? Why do I prep? My wife has asked me that several times and, to be honest, she still is not on board (that’s an article for a later date). When she asks me that, or complains about food buckets in a closet, I tell her that it is “just in case”. I do not really worry about an end of day’s apocalypse, or an EMP taking out our power grid. I do worry about things like extreme weather, losing my job, and social unrest.

I do not feel as if I need to list all of the potential reasons to be prepared. I am certain that most people visiting this site already have their own reasons. However, for those people just starting out, or the occasional friend or family member of a prepper who wants to gather more information, there are many reasons to be prepared. Personally, I find that being prepared gives me peace of mind that my family will have food, water, shelter and heat in the event of an emergency. We may not live like kings, but we won’t be starving or freezing either.

For the most part, it seems that the disasters or emergencies we face would be considered natural disasters. I consider those of us living in central Texas to be very fortunate. For the most part, we rarely have snow, and certainly not the several feet that plagues many other areas of the country. We rarely dip below freezing in the winter and if you don’t like the weather, just wait five minutes or so and it will change. Despite the mild winters and all around terrific weather, we do occasionally have our share of extreme weather conditions, things like tornadoes, flooding, the occasional snow or ice storm, power outages caused by all three, droughts, and wildfires. I know for a fact that all of these have happened in the past and impacted people in a number of ways. While we don’t have to talk about each of these in depth, I do feel that it is necessary to acknowledge that any or all of these can happen here.

Besides any of the above disasters occurring here, there is the likelihood of central Texas being impacted by events outside of our area. Hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico approaching Texas coastal cities can result in many evacuees coming to, or passing through the central Texas region. While the impacts to the residents were most strongly felt southeast of us, there is no doubt that our highways and region did feel the effects. Likewise, our resources are taxed when events like this occur and there is also the increased potential for crime. To me these are all good reasons to stay home and buttoned up if there is an evacuation going on at the coast.

Another reason (or category if you like that better) to be prepared is what I consider the human element. I am talking about those unintended aspects of life that can occur to any one of us. Layoffs, getting fired or injured, or serious illnesses can all distress you and your family. A sudden breakdown of a vehicle or just an accident can also have negative consequences. I had a coworker who broke a bone in his foot and could not work for several weeks and he was the sole provider for his wife and two children. Yes, he had workman’s compensation, but it only provided a percentage of his usual pay. So, for several weeks, his family had to juggle different bills and debts in order to make ends meet. Fortunately it was only a short period of time, but, had it lasted longer they may have been in trouble. On the flip side, if he had prepared well, maybe he would have had a months’ worth of food put up, a few hundred dollars in a coffee can, and some other preparations to make life a little easier during that period.

The final category I would discuss is the unexpected. My philosophy is that you cannot be prepared for every possible situation, but in general preparedness you can meet almost any obstacle head on and come out relatively unscathed. No one knows what might happen. There are simply too many possibilities to list. But being ready and prepared gives you and your family an advantage that many others will not have. Let’s face it, the ultimate goal in any situation is survival. If you suddenly find yourself in a life and death situation you had better be prepared.

I will leave you with that for now. Until next time, I would love to hear anyone’s experiences or situations. Why do you prepare? What did you or your family face and how did it affect you. Are you more of a prepper now because of it? What advice do you have for anyone just starting out? Until next time, thank you and take care.

The Full Pantry

IMG_20171210_112514366Ah food. I love it and I bet you do too. Interestingly enough, many people only have a few days of food in their home at any given time. I am sure there are reasons for this. Some people only get paid once a month, others may not have the ability to transport large quantities of food and I bet others don’t really think of it. It is possible that going to a store every few days has become habit for many people. I will freely admit that this used to be me. I would shop on a weekend day and buy just enough to get me through the week. Usually by Friday or Saturday I was out of most of the basics.

Fortunately that all changed as I became aware of how unprepared I was. There was never an “Aha!” moment. It just slowly occurred to me that we did not have a lot of food and I was spending extra time, gas and effort going to the store four or five times a month. That realization eventually led to what I call my “full pantry” philosophy.

My goal is to have at least 30 days’ worth of food, including condiments, in our pantry at all times. This is easier said than done especially since, in our house, my wife does most of the cooking, but I tend to do the shopping. I greatly improved my list making abilities and learned to take an accurate inventory of what was on hand.

Achieving the full pantry took a little bit of time. I did not run out and buy several hundred dollars’ worth of food in one day (I could not have afforded to anyway). Instead, I slowly and methodically increased purchases each time I went to the store. I bought the items that we use regularly and just kept buying one or two extra each time I shopped. I looked for sales on the items that I was going to buy anyway, and when I found them, I doubled up. And, for a while, I followed the “use one, buy two (or three)” mentality of purchasing.

All of this food did not go unnoticed by the wife. Eventually, about the time cans started falling out of the pantry, she asked a) why we had so much food, and b) how was she supposed to find anything. Both of those were excellent questions. In answer to the first, I simply told her I wanted us to have extra food on hand. The answer to the second was a little more complicated. To help us both out, I purchased several FIFO can organizers. FYI, FIFO stands for first in, first out. You load new cans into the top and the oldest cans are sitting at the bottom waiting to be used next. Buying these really helped with organization and ensured that we were not leaving cans buried in the back while we used fresher items from the front.

Whatever your reasons for wanting to be prepared, I am sure that nearly everyone can agree that having a full pantry is an important aspect. In my experience, I have found that, now that we have so much food in the pantry, it is very easy to maintain the levels I established. In a couple of instances, the increased amount of food has helped us out a great deal.

A couple of points that I would make are:

The pantry is not our food stockpile or long term storage. I know some people who rotate their stores through their pantry, and that is fine also. In our case, our pantry is our day to day food storage, it is just deeper than it used to be.

Buy what you use and use it. You will not find lima beans, chick peas, or asparagus in our pantry because we do not eat them. I guess if they were free I would bring some home, but I do not want to spend money on items that we are only going to eat under the direst circumstances.

It helps to get some items out of the kitchen. To make more room in the pantry for food, other items that are not regularly used were moved out of the kitchen. These included the crock pot, blender, and waffle maker. Almost one entire shelf was wasted space because of these things that we rarely use.

Organization is key. For nearly everything, I can tell at a glance exactly what is missing, was used, and how many replacements I need to buy. This helps with budgeting, saves time, and becomes second nature.

Well, that is about it for now. Please chime in and post a comment? Do you have the “full pantry” or do you have the bare minimum to get by? Do you have any unique storage or organization methods you want to share? What drawbacks or problems did you have filling you pantry. Thank you and take care.