My Foray Into Food Storage

A regular gal learning about Food Storage, Home Cooking, Canning, Gardening, and more!

Guest Post: Kristina, Part One

15 Comments

My dear friend, Kristina, graciously allowed me to interview her for this guest post.  Most of this is in her own words, but I have edited it a little to group like topics together.  She and I can talk for hours and flit from one topic to the next.  I thought you might appreciate a more coherent post.  🙂  I hope you read what she has to share and find things that help you in making your own plan to build your food storage.  Everyone should have at least a little food stored, even if it is just an extra week or two.

 

Food storage, photo courtesy lds.org

Food storage, photo courtesy lds.org

 

 

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The thing that makes me unique in the Mormon circle is that I don’t want to rotate my food storage.   I won’t rotate.  It’s a conscious decision.  I don’t eat my emergency storage.

 

Why?  Several years ago, I was talking to my friend, Janea, and she had just come to this very comfortable place in her own food storage philosophy.  Neither one of us wanted to eat out of a can.  Even if we canned our own food, we wanted to eat fresh and natural food.  Home grown food.  Unless it’s an emergency situation, I want to eat fresh food.

 

Home grown produce, photo courtesy lds.org

Home grown produce, photo courtesy lds.org

 

I have 3 pronged plan: 72 hour kits, a 3 month food storage (short term), and an “infinity” food storage (20+ year shelf life).

 

72 hour kits – Bags for each family member with everything needed for 72 hours.

 

Do you have a 72 hour kit ?  It's a good idea to have one no matter where you live.

Do you have a 72 hour kit ? It’s a good idea to have one no matter where you live.

 

3 month supply – This contains a more typical, every day, complete diet.  I have canned things: green beans, peas, canned corn, peanut butter, some canned meat (Costco canned chicken).  Every year, I take a month or two from this supply and eat out of that.  To build this, I came up with a 7 day menu.  Then, I multiplied that menu by how many weeks I wanted to have.

 

Green beans, photo courtesy lds.org

Green beans, photo courtesy lds.org

 

Infinity storage (long term) – This does not have a lot of variety.  I have a year supply of grains: wheat, quinoa, white rice, brown rice (brown rice is only exception to the 20 year shelf life rule).

 

Wheat, photo courtesy of lds.org.

Wheat, photo courtesy of lds.org.

 

I have a year supply of beans: white, black, pinto, kidney, adzuki, sprouting, lentils, and split peas; a year supply of spices, honey, baking soda, baking powder, salt, sugar, and apple cider vinegar.  I have a 6 month supply of blackstrap molasses, and my next goal is to obtain a year supply of it.  I choose to have blackstrap molasses, because it contains the vitamins and minerals I need.

 

The only necessary thing I don’t have a year supply of is water.

 

Soda bottles re-purposed as water storage.

Soda bottles re-purposed as water storage.

 

 

Because I do it this way, I don’t store some things.  I will only have variety for 3 months.  What if I have a long term emergency that’s more than 3 months?  I have several boxes of heirloom seeds.  My goal is that I will plant seeds and grow a garden.  I plan to be sustained with my short term storage and infinity food storage until I can grow my garden which is self-sustaining.  I have enough seeds to plant 3 3-acre gardens and fail.  I’m learning to garden now, so that I will have the skills when I need them.

 

Eggplant flower from last year's garden

Eggplant flower from last year’s garden

 

 

What empowered me so I felt that I could build my food storage is: Being patient, doing a little bit over time, and gaining my skills slowly, but steadily.  It’s the hare that wins the race.  I have a year supply, but I built it a decade ago.  I’ve been thinking about it for 10 years.  That’s not a short amount of time.  Over those 10 years, I have refined my plans.

 

When you read other sites, don’t get intimidated by the skills other people have (foraging, baking, sewing, etc.).  Make a list of 10 skills and work on them one at a time.  Learn them over a year or two, or however long it takes.  Don’t think you must learn quickly, because there’s going to be an emergency.  Anything you learn is moving you forward.  Learn to be secure in insecurity, to be mentally prepared for an emergency.

 

High winds, photo courtesy lds.org

High winds, photo courtesy lds.org

 

When I was living in Washington, we had a power outage due to high winds, and we went without power for a week.  At the time, we had a year supply of food.  We also had plenty of camping supplies.  We had a 3 month supply of water.  We had flashlights.  We had candles.  The one thing we needed was a generator, and we didn’t have it.  People were actually pillaging generators from people’s backyards and stores, because they wanted electricity.

 

So, one of the main things I learned was that I was prepared, but I can’t predict everything I will need.  I didn’t know that high winds would be my emergency situation, but it was, and I was still okay.  In a true emergency, you can’t have everything you want.  You must be makeshift.  I didn’t have a generator.  We had to use candles and flashlights.  We had sleeping bags.  I learned that you CANNOT have everything.  I had enough life sustaining things that I was okay.

 

Sleeping Bags, Tents, Tarps, Sleeping Mats, and Coolers.

Sleeping Bags, Tents, Tarps, Sleeping Mats, and Coolers.

 

We could have survived a lot longer than the week, we had enough things.  I had things other people needed.  I could have traded, bartered, if needed.

 

You’re never completely comfortable in an emergency.  There was sense of security knowing that we had enough to survive.  A bare minimum will give you the security that you need.  When you are prepared, you need not fear. I was prepared.

 

DSCN4709 quote

 

What do you think about Kristina’s food storage plan? 

Do you want to rotate your food storage? 

Or do you share her mindset that you’d rather have food that will store for extremely long periods of time, but you don’t plan to use (except in an emergency)?

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Author: Laurie Nguyen

I am a happily married, stay at home mom with four sons, ages 24, 22, 18, and 14. I'm not a professional blogger, and I'm certainly not a foodie or a chef. But I like food, so I think I'm qualified to write about my own life experience with food. Want to be a little more prepared for the unexpected? Check out my Food Storage Blog, http://forayintofoodstorage.com. Have a question about Food Storage? Email me: forayintofoodstorage@gmail.com.

15 thoughts on “Guest Post: Kristina, Part One

  1. I think Kristina’s food storage plan fits for her and her family’s needs. We rotate our food storage because it is culturally part of the way we live: a bounty of fish is eaten as well as canned; the fresh fish is eaten while it’s available, and the canned fish lasts well into the following years. The freshest cans go on the bottom of the pile, so the oldest get eaten first. The same goes for game and fowl.
    Kristina is smart to learn about gardening. Prepared garden beds and a good knowledge of growing food and saving seeds beats out a stockpile of seed packets any day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • quillentries, I so agree with you on Kristina’s food storage plan. I’m like her in gradually building things up and I also rotate my food storage as you do by keeping the freshest cans on the bottom and so forth. I started gardening two years ago with a 10′ X 10′ area for a traditional garden. Last year I added 3 wicking containers for my lettuces, radishes, green onions, carrots and herbs that I keep on my deck. This year I’ve expanded to 3 raised beds for my potatoes, onion sets, cabbage broccoli, tomatoes, peppers. I’m learning about Square Foot Gardening for this year; where you can grow more in a 4′ X 4′ bed and still have a bountiful harvest of fresh vegetables to eat and can. I’m also growing potatoes in 5-gallon buckets because they are the easiest plant to grow. One point I’d like to make for the beginner or the novice gardener is, plant vegetables that you and your family like and learn what vegetables grow well together (good companions). For example; don’t plant potatoes with turnips and tomatoes.
      Thanks for this great article Laurie you’re tops! HAPPY GARDENING AND PLANNING EVERYONE!!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I loved your post! I am thinking a lot about storage lately & your blog guides us all beautifully the only thing that wasn’t too clear to me was the twenty years shelf life… my grains have on its package a two year expiring date & I have looked on you tube how to last it longer than the shop’s packaging but it seemed complicated with tools I’m not too sure I could find out of the U.S like oxygen tablets maybe?
    I’d be very grateful if you could enlighten me on that subject as it’s an important aspect of storage. Twenty years does give you a sense of peace 🙂

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  3. Wow! She is actually doing what I have flirted with doing…and obviously being successful with it. And I love her emphasis on doing something…even if you aren’t doing everything you “should” be doing yet. Thanks for sharing this. It gave me lots to think about. – Fawn

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  4. Kristina’s plan is great for her family and I may use some of her ideas. I also have a roughly 2 week kit in the garage near the door. If we need to leave our home and and not return. I keep it in totes on wheels. These items I rotate into our everyday food every 6 months and restock. I need to work on gardening here in California. It is very different than Maine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s been one of my biggest challenges: gardening for my specific region. I’m in Northern California, and while the advertisements in the seed catalogs can claim a plant will thrive, I don’t really know unless someone here has grown it, or until I try it!

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  5. I eat fresh from my 800 square ft garden in the desert year round. I do can, freeze and dehydrate excess so that I can eat foods out of season. But the idea of a 72 hour supply of food confuses me. Every list that I look at assumes that you are Bugging Out, by the time that you add clothes, ammo and flashlights, there is no room for food. Would Kristine care to share her list for the backpack? Then we can modify it to our families tastes.

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  6. Pingback: Saving Money Never Tasted So Good: Chicken Tikka Masala | My Foray Into Food Storage

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