Friday, August 17, 2012

Frugal Friday - Stockpiling 101

Over the past year I have started couponing. I'm not one of those extreme couponers. That takes more time and dedication than I have available. However, if I can save some money on those items I already use, then I want to do it! Last December I started stockpiling some items. Non-perishables such as food storage containers, dish soap, toilet paper, sponges, paper towels and laundry soap and perishables such as tomato soup, canned tomatoes (various types), pastas, kidney beans and jelly. I had wanted to have about a six month (or more) supply of the paper and cleaning products, and succeeded. Now it is time to stockpile many items again. Except dish soap and sponges. I've enough of those to last me quite some time! 

 In May we began a remodeling project in our kitchen. For most of the summer I didn't have a place to cook or wash dishes. Now that the project is complete (YAY!!), I have been working on organizing the kitchen and making a list of what food I have stockpiled, like kidney beans, and what I want to have filling my cupboards, like navy beans. Now that I have a dishwasher (another YAY!!), some of my stockpiling needs have changed. 

Everyone's stockpile list will look different. My husband is a truck driver, and likes to eat a lot of PB&Js while on the road. Therefore I need to keep a lot of large jars of peanut butter (must be Jif) and squeezable bottles of jelly in the house. He can go through a few of those a month. There are some items, though, that most people will have on their lists. 

How can you decide what to stockpile? Here are a few tips: 
  • Sit down with a pen and paper (or an open Word document) and make a list of the items your family uses the most. You can split the list into smaller categories, such as paper products, canned goods, cleaning supplies, etc. 
  • Look through your cupboards. Perhaps you have already been stockpiling some items without even knowing it! 
  • Look online for others’ lists. If you do a search for stockpile or stockpiling, you are sure to end up with many results for great resources. 
  • Look at your storage options. Your stockpile may be limited due to available space in your home.

Have a great tip for starting a stockpile? Share it in the comments!

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