Buying In Bulk

I guess it comes from living on a farm for ten years.  This idea of getting the food in bulk and canning it.  On the farm all the things we grew came in to season all at once so the only choice was to can or freeze everything,  So we got used to that and found ways to do it so when we took it out to eat it was just as fresh as the day we put it down.

Now that we are in Florida we don’t have the gardens so I look for good buys where I can get it cheaper by the box and then either freeze or can it for later use.  I am finding it is cheaper to by it than it was to grow it, so my shelves and freezer are full all the time and my big job is just to  rotate it so it is always fresh.  Because of Norman’s health issues in the past I have to keep him on a careful diet, no processed foods and lots of fresh fruits and vegetables.  Our breakfast is always the same, i.e. a dish of fresh fruit, a dish of dried fruit and then a dish of steel cut oat meal.  The fresh fruit is a combination of four different kinds including mellon, banana, pineapple, apple sauce with blueberries, sectioned grapefruit or oranges, grapes, and now that Shanti has given us the fruit of the month club we get either pears, or apples, or special grapes or what ever the selection is that month.  The dried fruit is always a heaping tablespoon of dried cherries for joint pain (does a great job to keep that away), a heaping tablespoon of cranberries for the urinary tract, a heaping tablespoon of dried blueberries for the eyes, and a heaping table spoon of walnuts for the omega 3 fatty acids.  Then we finish breakfast with a bowl of oatmeal with raisins and always use the steel cut.  Because breakfast is always the same I try to get things in bulk.  Not the fresh fruit of cause, that differs depending on what I can get at the time.  The others I now get from Amazon or BJ’s outlet.  I get the dried fruit in four pound bags and the nuts in 3 pound bags.   Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.30 PM



These are are the fresh fruit ready to be cut up and store in the refrigerator as soon as my applesauce is done.  Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.28 PM #2

These are the dried fruits.  My extras are in this cupboard with the few jars I have left of pickles and beans left from my farm days.  I have to keep these all inside under air as it gets much to hot in my pantry for any food stuffs.  I keep my pots and pans out in the pantry. Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.28 PM

On one side of the dinning room is my baker’s shelf.  I use it as a butler’s pantry.  It holds my small dishes and I use the counter to set up my breakfast fruit dishes.  Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.27 PM #2

On the top shelf I have the dried fruit in pint jars so I can easily get them and not have to keep opening the big bags.  You can also see my big bag of tea.  That is how I buy my tea also.  We like the English Breakfast tea the best of buy that by bulk also.   We have always gotten the steel cut oat meal by the 4 or 5 pound deal from Amazon but this week I found on Amazon a better deal yet.  Instead of paying $1.83 cents a pound I now get it at $1.25 a pound and my first 50 pound bag arrived today.Photo on 12-10-15 at 10.49 AM

The poor delivery woman who brought this to my door is very glad this will last me about a year so she does not have to deliver that too many times.  I opened it right away and put them into jars.  I got 32 quarts of nice looking steel cut oats.  Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.26 PM

I just finished the sweet potatoes I had stored in a box on the floor of the linen closet, so I  put some of my jars on the floor and the rest on the top shelf of the linen closet.Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.27 PM

Now it is all under air and not in the way.  We take it out one jar at a time and put it into the cupboard near the stove where Norman cooks it every morning when he gets home from his walk.  It takes 30 minutes to cook so that gives us time to eat our fruit and plan the day before it is ready.  He also put raisins and a spoonful of bran in the oatmeal for added fiber.

The other meal that varies very little is our supper.  That is when Norman wants his whole wheat bread and peanut butter.  I can’t get wholewheat bread made from stone ground flour or when I do find it, it costs so much that I make my own and that too I get in bulk. I get 25 pounds from amazon and that I have to store in the freezer.  It makes the best bread and does not cost too much. Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.30 PM #2

I always make two loaves at a time.  We eat one fresh and I cut the other in half and freeze them.  One loaf lasts about four days so I have to make new bread every 8 days.  I made these this morning  just before the oats arrived.  Norman loves the fresh bread with peanut butter and jelly.  We get our peanut butter in bulk also as it is only in health food stores you can find peanut butter with no salt, which is what Norman needs.  I get it from Amazon – Crazy Richards is the brand we have been getting for years now.  It is so good and creamy.  And of course I make my own jelly.  In TN I grew my own grapes and raspberries so have about a dozen small jars left of that.  When that is gone I will have to go looking for some grapes in bulk and I know Nelson’s have the straw berries in bulk when they are at their peak season so I will use those instead of raspberries.  Photo on 12-10-15 at 12.28 PM #3

The peanut butter comes by a 12 jar pack and I tuck that down under the counter with my spaghetti sauce.   So you see, life has not changed that much for us.  We do less work getting the food but have just as big a variety at about the same price.  Life is very good for us.

Now I am finishing up my knitting for Christmas and I should be already come Dec. 25.  Just as I get my food in bulk I also got my yarn in bulk and got enough yarn this week to make five children’s reading blankets.  I have Jaxson’s  all done and Donna Renee’s almost done.  Then it is just the twins and Regina and I should get those done before Christmas Eve.  With nothing to do but cook and knit I should have plenty of time.  Have a great day.

About Carol (Ouma) Petts

I am a retired teacher. I have taught all levels from kindergarten through college and have been retired now for over 20 years. The last ten years we have lived on a farm and lived off the land, growing our own food and canning for our extended family. Now we have sold the farm and are moving to Florida to truly retire. I guess I have always had a short attention span as this is our 11th move. We have moved from a small farm in New Hampshire, to more city type living, small business adventures, focusing more on traveling, Florida living, Georgia, and Tennessee farming and now back to Florida. My blog is a way to keep my children up to date on what I am doing and letting them know I am still alive and well. My children are spread across the country from New England to Florida, Nova Scotia to New Mexico and CA and several places between, They let me know what they are up to by commenting on my blog but they are so busy with their own lives most times I have to assume " no news is good news". Now I are starting on a new adventure so will try to give daily updates until we get settled into a routine. Then I know even if I am getting older and should settle down I will start looking for some new and exciting adventure to start. Welcome aboard. Norman died Oct 30, 2017 so I am continuing the journey alone with the aid of my children, grand children and great grand children. At present I am living with my daughter and we are 7 in one house and cover four generations. We range in age from 7 to 85 and are finding common ground, we are living proof that multi generations can live and function in a three bedroom house if they really want to. Soon my grandson will have his house built next door so we all will have a room of their own except for the seven year old twins who by choice will share a room.
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