Saturday, 11 July 2015

Storage solutions

Thank you all for your comments on our newly decorated bedroom, we're both really pleased with it.  It has though highlighted the fact that neither of us is getting any younger and the decorating is getting harder as a result!  I think we'll need to get on and decorate the remaining rooms (twin bedroom, dining room and lounge) sooner rather than later, before we lose the will (or the use of OH's hands to arthritis).  Thankfully, the 3 remaining rooms don't need anything drastic, just a coat of emulsion....we've already got the paint for 2 of them.

Thanks to everyone too for their comments on my veg post.....seems most of us hated veg as kids.  Must be something to do with the fact that our parents' generation used to boil veg to within an inch of its life, and we were all told we had to eat it or else we'd have it served up cold at the next meal (well, I was anyway, and the thought of cold, slimy cabbage made me force it down when it was hot, and left me hating it for years and years).

Anyway, moving on......Kev at An English Homestead has today done a post about 'prepping' and self sufficiency, and it's something we are very keen to do and have started making preparations for.  As I've said before, OH plans on cutting down his working days as from next year, leading to eventual retirement in about 3 years.  Dawn in her comment on Kev's post has mentioned about her state pension age having been moved a few times.....mine too (along with everybody else's), the last time I checked mine had been moved to around 12 years from now.....a long time to wait.  And who knows whether the state pension will still be around then?

So our plan is to try and grow as much veg and fruit as we can....we've already got plans to create more veg beds for next year.  We have enough freezer space - we have a big fridge freezer indoors, plus an under the counter one and a small chest freezer which we were given, both in the utility room. 

The utility room is actually a brick built structure tacked onto the side of the kitchen, which used to house a loo and a bread oven, both removed years ago by the previous tenant who then used the room as a coal store and shed.  OH cleaned it up when we moved in, it has electricity and plumbing so I have my washing machine and tumble dryer out there, along with the 2 freezers and small extra fridge.  I keep some tins on shelves in there and things like flour and sugar in a plastic lidded box.  We do have a mouse problem (we live on farmland, so it's inevitable really) but keep on top of it with traps.  I know that mice can chew through plastic, but my thoughts are that since I go in the utility room every day, I'll notice sooner rather than later if they try to get at the stuff in the plastic box.....they haven't done so far. 

I want to get some more plastic lidded boxes so we can start building up stores of more flour etc - I do a lot of baking.  We've also just bought a tall, narrow but deep shelved bookcase, it fits neatly into the space behind the kitchen door, this is for things like foil, baking paper (I buy catering sizes from market stalls), tins, coffee, etc.  We have another similar shelf unit upstairs on the landing, this will be for spares of toiletries. 

We plan on stocking up on toiletries, tins of beans, tomatoes, etc, coffee and the like whenever we see them on special offer (and when we have the money spare!).

Hopefully, by the time OH retires, we should be well stocked up so that shopping should be cut to a minimum.  Well, that's the plan anyway.

11 comments:

  1. When we lived in the village as a child, mum stocked up on everything, in the winter the bus could not get through. I don't keep so much stock in, I find if I have too much it goes out of date before we use it. My mum was a good cook until it came to cooking cabbage.

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    1. | do keep a good eye on dates and obviously use up shortest dates first. I don't really worry too much about stuff being out of date though....unless it's obviously past it's best.

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  2. It's July, get the Christmas Sprouts on!!!

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    1. Lol....I actually like sprouts. Especially sliced and stir fried, or in bubble n squeak.

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    2. here is one of my favorite stories.
      my mum is from england- war bride.
      she loved sprouts. slopped them into serving bowl with the copious water they had been boiled in.
      when i was about 16 we were in the produce section of the market when i noticed cute teeny cabbages.
      i asked her what they were.
      she gave me a strange look and said,'brussels sprouts.'.
      i said ,'i didn't know they were green!'.
      it was years later i realized what a surprise i'd given her, since they were on the table every week--but certainly not green!

      deb harvey

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  3. I like to keep a good stock in, growing up with a miles walk to the nearest shop makes you that way, when I buy lots of flour I seal the bags in plastic and freeze them when they get close to date. My utility room started out just like yours, I have the washing machine and chest freezer in there but need to shuffle it all round to make best use of the space.

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    1. We have no shops nearby, another reason why we want to get in good stocks......we shall probably be using the car less once OH retires.

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  4. Decorating is always more tiring and tiresome than you think, until the bitter moment comes when, with paint and paper bought, you actually have to DO it. But oh, the joy of a newly decorated room! We have little extra storage space, unless you count two spare bedrooms which were our sons rooms, one now being a bed sitting room with TV for when we want to watch different progs or simply have another room in which to relax, and the other spare room which, until now, has been a work room but which we're turning back into a spare bedroom (with husband building a new wardrobe with both hanging spare for clothes and drawers) in the centre of what was the wall-to-wall bookshelves (sounds odd, but it's looking good so far.)
    A utility room would be wonderful to have, but we really have nowhere to add one to our home, but we have a brick built garden shed for the tools and a lovely summerhouse and a very large garage and so I can't really moan about the lack of a utility room!
    Margaret P

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    1. It does sound as though you have plenty of storage space! Our garage leaks.....it's been patched up but still leaks and needs a new roof really, something which the landlord is reluctant to do, sigh.

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  5. No chance of a utility room here sadly but I do have a walk in pantry P built me! Well done with the planning Sue, I stocked up on expensive items before retiring which was good as I cannot afford such things now. Being self sufficient, or at least, as far as possible, is very satisfying. My thinking has changed so much since retiring and having more time for this sort of thing. I hear what you say about getting old, we are very aware that we cannot do as much as we did. Just keep plodding is our plan!

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    1. Oh, I'd love a pantry! We used to have one in a house I lived in as a child.....it was north facing so quite cold, and had a huge marble counter.

      I am determined to stock up as much as possible before husband retires.

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Thank you for your comments, I love reading them!