I’m sure that a lot of readers will be able to identify with shopping at home and hope it will give some of you an option for saving a little money and possibly even helping others. How many of you are like me and will see a great sale on canned goods, rice, pasta, etc. and decide to stock up the pantry (since it’s on sale)?
To me, a bargain on just about anything is too good to pass up unless I just don’t have any cash to spare. If I know that I’ll eventually need it, it hitches a ride home with me.
Inventory Your Pantry
Since I was recently laid off from my job and waiting for my EI (Employment Insurance) benefits to kick in, I decided to see just how long I could live off what was in my cabinets. Taking inventory, I realized that I had way too many cans of beans (hmmm, what to do with them), quite a few packages of different types of pasta, multiple cans of tomatoes and an abundance of canned vegetables.
As I have been trying to reduce the amount of store-bought canned products, it made sense that these hadn’t been touched in quite a while. Now, the decision was whether to try and use them or find something else to do with them. I also discovered some other things in the pantry that had been bought to use in a special dish (and never prepared), and even some things that I’m not quite sure why I bought it. Does anyone else do this…please don’t tell me I’m the only one…:-)
Next, I turned my attention to the freezer and the excess in there. I discovered some large packages of vegetables that I got a great bargain on but that had been hiding in one of the bottom drawers of my freezer, a roast that needed to be cooked before it was consumed by freezer burn, and some packages of frozen fruit that I could have been using in my morning smoothies.
Helping Yourself And Others
So, what was the result of my scavenging through things I already had? Enough food to feed me for a week, maybe two, I only needed to plan some meals from the ingredients and go from there. I also set aside things that I knew I wouldn’t use, for whatever reason, and gathered them into a box to drop off at the local food pantry.
We all know that food pantries are forgotten in the summer because they don’t do drives then, we’re too busy to think about the plight of others and it’s just not in the forefront of our minds this time of year. The gratitude of the workers at the pantry gave me such a pang in my heart that I resolved to try and find others to donate now. After all, with the state of the economy, many of us could be just a step away from needing their help.
Have you ever tried shopping at home to save your money? I’d love to hear about your experiences.