Shopping Trips and Tips

Saturday was a busy day. Joel and I were at the church most of the day for Easter play practice. During our lunch break, I ran over to Kmart and picked up some vegetable plants. On our way home, we stopped by Lowe’s for some home improvement items. While we were there, I saw vegetable plants and decided to pick up a few more.

Now there are strawberry, cucumber, zucchini and several kinds of peppers and tomato plants that need to be planted into the garden. I’m not feeling well today and Joel needs to work on the irrigation, but I’ve got to get them into the ground today!

Sunday was busy too. There was church in the morning, shopping, then back to the church for Lunch on the Lot, followed by more shopping, and finally canning in the evening.

Our first shopping trip in the morning to Smart & Final was a small one but we got some great things. We picked up four 1-gallon bottles of water for 79 cents each. We also added a case of wide-mouth canning jars and ground beef & turkey for canning later in the evening.

When we got home, the popcorn and baking soda were vacuum sealed  to add to the food storage pantry. The Food Saver canisters are really coming in handy! I picked up three of the large 3-quart size a few years back when they were on sale at Smith’s. I’d like to get some more of these to store salt, baking powder and other items. I like the fact that they don’t have metal lids that can rust like canning jars and are made of plastic so they’re lighter and I won’t have to worry about them breaking. I’d like to get another one of the three-piece sets. A set came with my Food Saver, but something happened to the lid for the two smaller ones. They wouldn’t seal anymore so I threw them away. Maybe I’ll be blessed and find them at Savers thrift store one day.

I did find a $2.99 package that had a set of measuring spoons and cups at Savers. They were pretty dirty and disgusting, but afer a run through the dishwasher they look brand new! I bought these to split up to use in canisters for scooping. If you go back and click on the popcorn picture above, you’ll see the handle of the 1/3 measuring cup. The directions (which I also put into the canister) call for 1/3 cup of popcorn. I see from the picture that I need to go back and put a measuring spoon (1/2 teaspoon) into the baking soda container. I’ve stored a 1/2 cup measuring cup in our rice for years, really comes in handy, no need to search the cupboard drawer for a measuring cup every time I make rice. (This is a great little tip that you can use too. And don’t bother wasting money on buying brand new spoons and cups to put into your canister/containers. Shop the thrift stores or yard sales instead. And don’t worry about finding a complete set. Since you’ll be splitting them up, it really doesn’t matter how many you get in a set.)

Here’s another tip about a kitchen appliance I find very useful. On a shopping trip to Kmart last week, we picked up this cordless kettle. The name is a little misleading. It does have a cord, but the kettle itself doesn’t. It sits on a stand that has a cord. This kettle has become one of my most used kitchen appliances. When I originally purchased it, I thought I’d only be using it to make hot drinks. But I use it for so much more than that. I use it to heat up water to fill my dishpan for hand washing dishes. Normally it takes a long time (and I mean A LONG TIME) for hot water to reach my kitchen faucet. That wastes a lot of water. The kettle heats up water much faster and stays hot for an amazingly long time. I’ve used it as a pitcher to pour water into a pot, or into the broiler pan when baking bread, or into a measuring cup when cooking/baking. If you don’t have one of these, you might want to think about getting one. In an emergency situation, it could be used to sterilize water. If we ever get a solar panel/battery system, I’ll do some tests with it plugged into the system and let you know the results.

Next up, first time canning cooked ground beef/turkey.

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“For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.” – 2 Corinthians 10:12 NKJV

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