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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have decided to step our stockpile up a notch. We have been stockpiling some since I first Joined this site. Mostly sales, clearnace things I got free because of coupons etc.

We want to step it up and start finding better ways to store things, and even better sales to stock up with.

Just recenly I got some good sales, dishwasher tabs (55) were on clearance half price and I had some 3.50 coupons so I ended up getting them for 3.10 each, i bought 4. then the other day I got boxes of dryer sheets they were 105 in each on and were on clearance for 2.22 (awesome price here) so I bought 4 one of which I used a .50 cent coupon.

I always find these deals, but am having a harder time with food. I do get some good deals, but not a lot.

I plan to purchase some shelves to help store the products, walmart had some on sale for a little over 30 dollars. But I am going to get one at a time for now.

I also had an interview for a job on Thursday so hopefully on Monday I will find out if I have that or not. That will help out with my emergency fund and stockpile.

I was thinking that I may budget 50 dollars into each pay solely for stockpiling purposes.

Anyone have any advice?
 

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my advice on the shelves is to try and get them for free. You can find them on Freecycle or Craigslist sometimes. Also estate sales after the people are done they give everything away for free just to get rid of it. check your Craigslist.

For the food stuffs the way I save a whole lot is to buy the reduced price meats and package them up in serving size portions and freeze them. Use the crockpot to create a delicious cheap meal. You can assemble it in the morning and then when you get off work your dinner is ready.

I also believe in making my own: such as bread and cookies.

There are a lot of ways to save. One thing I have learned from the good people on this site is to find alternatives so you don't have to buy as many products.

I have learned to make my own bread from sourdough starter, make my own soap, laundry detergent, sugar scrub, candles, furniture polish and scouring powder. I still want to learn how to make more from scratch.

good luck and hope you get the job !
 

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It sounds like you are well on your way, and good luck finding all those wonderful bargains to fill the new shelves, and on the possibility for a new job as well!

I keep my food budget separate from my non-food budget. That way I know the food money is used FOR food.

After years of stockpiling, I've found I control things better if I have a designated space, shelf, or baskets for storage. I keep like-kinds of things together in one place, rather than some here, and more there, and not knowing how much I have total.

I have a small basket for bars of bath soap. When it's full, then I no longer purchase soap (no matter how "good" the price), but put the money towards something else. I have a certain amount of space for TP. I have a small basket for deodorant, another for toothpaste, etc.... This allows for use out of the stockpile, and then you can go for long periods of time before you replenish them when you find them at the lowest possible prices.

There's ALWAYS something on sale, but I also know to stockpile Pork 'n Beans, mustard, and ketchup during grilling season holidays like Memorial Day and the 4th of July, when they tend to be the lowest. I purchase most of the nuts I use after Christmas when I can get them 50-75% off. So keep those "best price" times in mind.

It's also a good idea to know how much you use in a month/year, and be sure to check those use-by dates before stocking up. Loss leaders are notorious for having use-by-dates in the near future. That's why they are moving the stock. Can you reasonably use that amount by the time the use-by date is at hand? Peanut butter is the one I have to watch carefully and not get more jars ahead than I can reasonably use in that time. I've got enough to get me through November, so any on-sale jars I find I know have to have dates in December or beyond.

Knowing how much you can reasonably use within a certain space of time will keep you from over-stocking or under-stocking.

Caution over-stocking products that contains fats/oils that can go rancid from long storage, or the scents/perfumes go "off". "Funny" things can happen to toothpaste, shampoo/conditioner, and even detergent/softener if they are stored too long.

I have my SIL purchase a gallon of salon-style shampoo at the price she gets it for being a licensed stylist - so that's a huge savings - PLUS I give her enough notice to watch for the product to go on sale - for even more savings. The brand I get is so concentrated I can put into a small container (recycled shampoo bottle) and cut it with water, so I only need to purchase a gallon once ever few years.

The laundry detergent we purchase comes in a 5-gallon bucket (1280 loads), which will last us at least 3-1/2 years. With this particular kind of detergent, it's suggested you NOT use a softener, so I never purchase, nor need softeners, for even more savings. I hang our clothes to dry (inside or outside - depending on the weather) and they are soft without softener.

I purchase a year's supply of powdered "milk" product we use instead of commercial milk. So I use unspent money from my grocery money for large purchases of "milk", wheat, etc., which are purchased in bulk. I never spend ALL the budget amount ($75/every two weeks) because I know I'll need money for these larger purchases.

Another thing is to concentrate on "the least amount for the most uses" (and hopefully for the least amount of money). Do you need 3 or 4 cleaners, or will one all-purpose cleaner do for many tasks? Better yet, I've found steam cleaners will clean EVERYTHING safely and without toxic chemicals.

I already have cornstarch in storage for the multitude of uses in the kitchen (Magic Mix, homemade pudding mixes, etc.) AND it cleans windows beautifully, so I don't have "window cleaner", I make it with 1 gallon warm water and 2 T. cornstarch (enough to wash all the windows in the house - inside and out - sponge on and squeegee off). Cornstarch and water will also make spray starch for ironing (not that I do much of THAT anymore - LOL). Here are some other uses for cornstarch: http://blessingsforlife.com/hometips/cornstarch.htm

I store tomato powder, and no longer have cans/jars of tomato sauce, tomato paste, pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce in storage. What a space-saver, AND it has an indefinite shelf-life. http://www.thespicehouse.com/spices/tomato-powder

Hope there's something there that is beneficial...
 

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$50 ea. pay should get you a good stockpile started. You just need to decide what kind of stockpile you want. Do you want an "ingrediant" stockpile - things like the basics that you can always make meals out of . See Grainlady's posts. Or do you want an "extended pantry" with items you eat all of the time , more ready to eat foods. Also, consider some emergency foods that would be easy to heat and eat, or don't have to be heated.

I started w/basic ingrediants as outlined in Grainlady's posts.Even though I don't grind my own flour (yet) I have a good supply that I can make basic foods from. I included flour, salt, shortening, powdered milk, soy flour (can use in place of eggs), oats, beans of all kinds, rice , sugar , molasses, honey and pasta.

Then I began adding canned goods -veggies and fuit, spaghetti sauce, soups, etc. I put in a good 3 month supply by visiting Save a lot.

I then added some ready to eat things for emergencies like corned beef, spam, spaghetti o's (for the kids), soups.

I bought other things to just extend my pantry when I found good deals. I have to store these in big plastic boxes w/lids. I have a good stock of cereals, crackers, cake/brownie mixes and just pantry goods in general.

I store all of this in my "unfinished" basement in containers. The cans are not in containers though. I got 5 gallon and 3 gallon "buckets"w/lids from the bakery dept. at Ingles for .75 cents or less ea. Those I use for sugar, flour and oats.

I also now get 50 pounds of potatoes at a time when they go on sale for .20 cents/pound. Those are in a laundry basket in a cool dark spot in my basement.

I stocked up on Emergence C for vitamins.

After our recent blizzard that knocked out power - 2 weeks for some people, I stocked up on toilet paper, paper towels and plates.

I also now keep a supply of propane bottles for our campstove and lanterns. I have 2 cases of MRE's bought on super sale - they have a shelf life of 5 yrs. They come w/ their own heaters.

Sorry this is so long, and I hope some of it helps.
The best thing to do is to look at all of the stockpileing posts and glean info from them. Grainlady has some great posts. There are also two ongoing threads where people report what they stock up on.



oops it looks like I was typing while Grainlady was. Thanks for all your help GL.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks so much for the replies. I have learned a lot on here from the various posts.

The first thing for me is that there is no craigs list or freecycle in our area, the closes area for it is 3 1/2 - 4 hours away. So that is kind of out for me for getting free shelves.

I do have some shelving that I have gotten free from friends and family, but its not enough for what I need.

I think that keeping the food budget different from other budgets is a great idea to make sure that I do not spend something on say toilet paper when it should be spent on food.

I also agree that having a designated space to put things will be a great help for me, when it comes to knowing how much I have, rotating stock, and keeping things under control.

I always keep track of what I can use in a specific amount of time so that I do not buy something that will not be eaten. For example only one out of three of my kids like peanut butter, and my husband likes it as well. My other two kids do not like it at all, and I do not like it very much, so we do not purchase much of that, we go through maybe 1-2 small bottles in a year. We used to purchase the bigger bottle and found that it would outdate before we could use it, so we stopped doing that a couple of years ago.

Powdered milk here cost about the same as fresh milk, though I am sure it would be good to have a bag of it on hand incase of emergency or something if the store was not open do to storms or something. That way if we ran out of fresh we could make from powdered.

I love using the least amount of product for the most uses, I currently use half of what is recommended for my laundry, my clothes are still clean and still smell nice.

I have never heard of tomato powder, I will have to look into that and see what uses it has, and if it will be of benifit to us.

We make a lot of things using tomatos, tomato paste etc, like homemade spaghetti and lasagna.

Thanks and anymore suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
 

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Good advice mostly. I do however disagree w/ the shelf advice. I used used shelves repurposed and cheaper ones and DISASTER. The can goods made the shelves buckle,the kids didn't pick anything up and a huge mess ensued.
This summer/fall I worked for weeks cleaning,reorg. throwing out and being furious. I purchased shelves that held 1000# from K-mart. They have 5 shelves each and a press board shelf. These centers could easily be recut if they get damaged. $49. but on sale for $39. I eventually got 6 but 4 was a great start. I you set it up right you will save a lot of grief believe me. I have stackable drawers for my hygiene. I keep all cleaners,toilet paper and paper towels in the bsmt.

A good system i use is stickers. I have colored circles i put on the item if the exp. is in 30 days. If somehow I have many of 1 item I donate. Hope you get it the way you want it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
the sticker idea would work great for items soon to expire, u can see what to use up at a glance I think that could work great.

Also thanks for the advice on the shelving.
 

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I always use to have SUCH a nice stockpile. Food, HBA, Pet food...but its gone now and I stopped couponing throughout all the moving and stuff and now that DH are getting our own place again soon he said to me last night if we budget a little bit more for grocerys if I think I can get the stockpile back...I said yeah, duh. LOL.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes that is what I am going to be trying to do, budget a separate amout for stockpiling and try to get a good amount stocked. My dh got laid off in July so we used up a lot of what we did have, so I want to me more prepared in case something similar had to happen again.
 

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I know stickers don't cost much and are easier to spot but what about using a plain black (or coloured) perm marker? Write the expiry dates on top of the cans and rotate stock accordingly?

We're in the midst of cleaning out everything - cupboards, shelving etc. So...I should not stockpile right now b/c my dad will just end up using it to get rid of it regardless of expiry date. My efforts would be wasted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I did that with cereal that I purchased just used a permant marker and wrote the date on the side that was sticking out on the shelf. That would also work for me, probably even better because I can rotate completely according to date.

thanks
 

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Powdered milk here cost about the same as fresh milk - Gibblerkelly

It may be worthwhile to do the math and know exactly how much the difference is. If you then multiply it by the gallons of milk you use per year, you may be surprised at the price difference! Maybe even buy the cheaper milk for one whole year to get the stockpile going, then loosen up a bit and go for the one you prefer.
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Here milk is sold by the liter. 1 liter or 2 liter. 2 liters of milk is only 1/2 a gallon. We pay about 3.55 for two liters. Sometimes more. In my community it costs as much as 4.69 for a two liter, so I usually stock up at about 3.55 when I go to the bigger community about 45 minute drive away.

We go through about 12 liters of milk in one week, so 6 - 2 liter cartons. Sometimes more.

There are only two kinds of milk we can purchase here. they both cost the same.

About 6 months ago I checked out the cost of a bag of powdered milk, just to see the price difference, I am not sure if there was any difference at all, and if there was it was maybe a dollar.

I need to check that out again just to be sure.

But just the same it would be good to have a bag of powdered milk on hand just in case of an emergency, power outage or something, cause it just mixes with water. So that is something we will be looking into on our next grocery trip.

In the mean time I will look into the price and see the exact difference for the amount of milk. Thanks
 
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