Help plan a winter food basket
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  1. #1
    Registered User TheRootedNomad's Avatar
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    Default Help plan a winter food basket

    Well it is definately cooling off here. The final peices of people's gardens are being pulled up and the food drives for the holidays are starting. I think it's great that so many people get baskets at Thanksgiving and Christmas but what about the rest of the winter. Spring and summer seem easier to me, to feed a family. You don't have to worry about paying for heat, there are gardens, and foraging is a better possibility. I'm drifting off topic......

    Anyway, the boys and I are starting to plan a winter family food basket. We are going to try and do one for a family with children and one for an elderly household. I thought people could post some suggestions (different than the typical Thanksgiving type stuff) and which basket it was being posted for: elderly, family, or both. I especially could use ideas for the older the folks.

    TIA

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    Registered User MysticEagle's Avatar
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    For the elderly I think some of the heat and eat soups would be good. You could get the Healthy Request low sodium type ones. Also add in some crackers.

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    Registered User Lady_V's Avatar
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    Off the top of my head --

    preserves, jelly, jams
    dehydrated fruits and veggies -- they can eat the fruits, soak the veggies for soups etc and have FRESH (sorta) food
    small bags of beans & rice
    cocoa and marshmallows
    oatmeal
    I can't be out of money... I still have checks left!

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    Registered User sunshine's Avatar
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    For either : hot cocoa packets, teas, coffees, creamers

    If you're adding in breakfast stuff -- do kid cereals for family ones, oatmeal , cream of wheat and grits for either, pancake or Bisquick mix, syrups, canned ham (low salt for elderly if possible), eggs or powdered eggs if you're doing non perishables.

    Canned soups, stews, etc (like chicken and noodles, chili and so forth) -- I always want warm stuff like that in the winter. Again - low salt for the elderly if possible.

    Cake mixes, cookie mixes, etc. . . add colorful sprinkles and decorations for family ones. . . maybe things like warm delights for the elderly so they don't have so much waste, or smaller Jiffy mix cake mixes. . .

    That's all I can think of, off the top of my head. . I think it's great that you're doing this. . when we adopt a family for Christmas , we commit to doing a "basket" of goodies each month for an entire year. . . we give them a basket on the 25th of each month. (easy for me to remember). . . since so many are on food stamps, I also like to include non food stuff like body wash, laundry soap, toliet paper , feminine products if appropriate, shampoo, toothpaste and toothbrushes, etc.

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    what a wonderful idea!
    I may borrow your idea, if that's ok...

    some ideas that come to my mind are:

    instant packets of coffee/flavoured coffees/cocoas
    little packets of "liquors" to add flavor to coffee (no alcohol in them - i've got tons!)
    little packets of "soup"
    or "cup of soup" cans/bottles/mugs (that are bought this way)
    some cold weather squash perhaps or sweet potatoes!
    maybe some mini pies... or a whole big one! (any kind, that doesnt need refrigerated)
    if possible a coupon to a local butcher for meat
    if you have any cans/jars of beans (green beans, lentils, soy beans) from garden
    pickled eggs, beets
    or just pickles! lol
    some dry pasta/rice
    dry beans
    dry soup mixes - or make your own in a jar
    cookie or muffin mixes - premade, make your own
    or already baked cookies!
    small pot pies - bought/made - list on the outside what's in them.
    calzones - list on the outside what's in them.
    some napkins, maybe plates/plasticware/cups/plastic serving spoons
    make a fave casserole of your own - list on the outside what's in it/how to reheat
    a small pack of sodas perhaps (cans/bottles)
    popcorn... with different flavourings... salts too!

    tons of options... this is all that came to mind now... i'll write more as i think of it.

    thanks for the beautiful idea!

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    Registered User sunshine's Avatar
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    Oh yeah -- for family baskets , I'd include snack type foods -- chips, pretzels, candy, etc. Treat they may not have the $$ to purchase.

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    For the elderly:
    snack sized bags of nuts, fruit, cookies
    ready to heat soups
    hot tea or hot cider mix

  8. #8
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    I know it is a food basket but a box of kleenex or a 4pack of Tp would help also.

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    Registered User Trishagirl's Avatar
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    How about some tuna or canned meats like chicken or beef for stews ect.
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    Registered User Goodwin17's Avatar
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    I think you've gotten some awesome ideas! I think it is wonderful that you're doing that!
    Heather- Wife to my DH BJ
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    "Never, never, never give up!" ~Winston Churchill

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  11. #11
    Master Dollar Stretcher madhen's Avatar
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    I would probably do a toiletry basket. Everything I can think of runs along the lines of necessities such as toothpaste, aspirin, soaps, etc.

    For a food basket, fresh fruit would be nice. You can get apples, pears, citrus - all fruits that stay fresh for a while. Or canned fruit or applesauce. My mother, who is in her late 70's, likes toast every morning, so maybe some nice sliced bread or English muffins and a sugar free jam. Juice boxes would work for young or old.

    Those little thingies of flavoured milk you can buy off the shelf (not refrigerated) are tasty. I think Horizon is the brand? You can get strawberry or chocolate. They can be stored at room temp, and I've tried them both - very tasty! Good for a kid's basket.
    Last edited by madhen; 10-28-2008 at 01:39 AM.
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    Registered User TheRootedNomad's Avatar
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    As we work on rearrangeing the kitchen food storage (since I've pulled some cabinets) the boys and I are going to be hunting for ideas in my cabinets as well.

    I love Sunshine's idea of doing a basket every month. I will put that on a running list of great ideas I keep. I have several pages in my journal reserved for great ideas. Some are mine, most are not. Then maybe next year I will be able to committ to doing something more long term like that.

    I've printed these off and have them in with my coupons. I can't believe I hadn't even thought of TP until someone else mentioned it.

    Keep 'em comeing.

  13. #13
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    I second the basket every month, buy what you can localy. Include tips and recipes. Include small items for family fun also (ie)a new box of crayons and papper, yarn and some crochet hooks and some easy instuctions on how to make a hot pot holder.

    For the elderly (if in your neighborhood), include personal coupons from you and your kids, such things as rakeing leaves, shoveling snow, a lift to the grocery store on senior discount day. I call or visit once a month .

    I'm inspired by your desire to help others!! you MADE my day !!!!!

    God bless

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    Registered User joyofsix's Avatar
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    Great ideas and a great plan. I'd try for easy things for both baskets. Don't forget pasta and sauce or mac&cheese, they are great stretchers. How about some small cookies, graham crackers and popcorn for fun.
    Mom to Emma, Spencer, Connor, Lily,Fletcher, Amelia and Adeline.

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    Registered User georgiamom's Avatar
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    My husband is in a group that does a basket for nursing homes every year at Thanksgiving and Christmas we do socks, lotions, throws and woolen caps. We have to be careful of snacks because of their dietary needs. We give gift cards so their families can take them to stores to get them what ever they need or we offer to take them. I know it's not much but it's the thought that counts.

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