Prepping Changes Your Shopping Habits

I have been sitting here on what has been the hottest day of the year, trying to work out when I am going to get some shopping for me.

It would seem to be the case or at least it is for me, that when you start prepping, shopping trips are never the same.  Even two weeks ago when I went shopping for me, I came back with a prepper haul rather than items for me to eat for the week. 

Every time I go into the supermarket now I may start with one intention but invariably I end up looking at offers, prices and availability and start adding food for the prepper pantry.   It is only once I get home that I realise the only food I got for myself is some cold meat, milk and bread.  Not exactly food to get you through the week.

On one hand I am desperately trying to work out timings for me to get to the supermarket and then do a batch of meal prep, visit my mum, do the radio show, go out with Patrick etc.  On the other hand, I am telling myself, I don’t need to be perfect and something will turn up.

I seem to be caught in the middle, not quite sure what to do and just keep muddling through.  Hopefully I will manage to get myself some supplies next time and get some meals prepped for me rather than for the stockpile.

You can watch my video on this subject here

6 thoughts on “Prepping Changes Your Shopping Habits

  • July 20, 2022 at 9:04 pm

    I saw your video on this subject and I completely understand – you have a lot on your plate. I am semi-retired, still work 25 hours per week but with a much more flexible schedule now – only go into the office 2 or 3 days per week so that frees up some more time during the day instead of trying to do everything in the evenings or weekends. I’m an early riser so often have 2 or 3 hours worth of work under my belt before heading out for a walk and shop at around 10am.

    When I do my budget for the month I now fill two envelopes – one is for day-to-day groceries and one is for long term storage (or preps as you call them). I also try to at least take a look at what I have on hand, fresh and frozen before I head out. I know that I have more than enough proteins on hand so that my day-to-day shopping is concentrated on dairy, bread, fruit & veg – I get those things first and then I know that I can always make something during the week ahead.

    I’ve already checked the online flyers and made a note of sale items and what I can buy to earn loyalty points – this may or may not include proteins. I then do a quick tour of the store to see what the in-house sales might be and those things tend to be my preps. I have a good supply of basics on hand – as do you – so now I find it most cost efficient to shop the sales and put those items away.

    Or, as I intend doing next week after payday – make a conscious decisions to only prep certain items – most prepping money next month will go towards non-food items. Again, I’ll watch the flyers, try to combine them with loyalty point offers and any other deals that might come up on the day – with having the money set aside for the month I can take my time and get the best deals possible as I know what I’m looking for.

    I’ve always kept a decent pantry even before the pandemic but I admit that even I went into panic mode at the start and was spending huge amounts every time I went to a store – but the sheer exhaustion that went with wiping everything down when I got home and then deciding where it would go became overwhelming and forced me to calm down a bit and really assess what I had and what I need moving forward.

    Oh, and I bought 3 bars of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk (large) along with two boxes of fancy chocolate biscuits on Monday – but all on sale of course! :-} Stay cool.

    • July 23, 2022 at 8:25 pm

      Sale chocolate is a good thing. I completely understand that initial panic mode, thankfully I am not quite as bad as I was initially. The getting everything done at the weekends and evening is a bit of a trial though. The good thing is that I will get there eventually and I am now not trying to do something every night because I will just burn myself out. Hopefully as I get more used to this I will be better organised lol

  • July 25, 2022 at 10:17 pm

    Re: Decluttering video – sorry for replying to you here but I cannot for the life of me get my Google account to match up with Youtube!
    I am so organized that my friends claim that my pantry is alphabetized! Not quite! But here are a few tips from someone who lives in a small 1 bedroom apt. and preps more than anyone else I know!

    .Do a quick count of how many PORTIONS you have of various foodstuffs – I think you’ll be shocked. I just did a count of protein portions in my small freezer compartment on top of my fridge (fridge is 5′ high by 28″ wide so considered to be an apt. sized unit here) – I had 120 portions! I do use bins to help organize even in there.
    I may only have 25 cans of fruit but each can represents at least 4 portions so 100 in total. I think doing this first may help. I know that Patrick sometimes eats with you and sometimes your daughter is there so perhaps you would want to think of a portion as two servings.

    Group like with like – using a few plastic baskets or just carboard boxes to steady things a bit more on your metal shelves. I had a look at you tour video and I was just itching to get in there and organize it! No offense meant as I know you work FT (I’m now semi-retired so only work PT) and you’ve been ill. But it will really take away a lot of the stress when you can see at a glance what you actually have in each category.

    I have one hall closet that was meant for coats plus a bit of storage – it is only 2 feet deep but about 5 feet wide. To the left are the built in shelves – about 15″ deep where I keep all the canned goods. I fit in an old Billy Bookcase – just 21″ wide and only half height but this holds all my condiments + pickles etc., milks (canned and UHT), salts & peppers, plus packs of jello and puddings in a plastic basket. Some small bins go on top holding odds & ends.

    Underneath the shelving and in between the shelves and the bookcase there is just enough space for a stack of plastic bins of various sizes. Two large ones hold long term (past 2023) cans of everything – this way I know that what is out on the shelves is what needs to be used first. Then the ones stacked on top hold things like rice, pasta, grains, sugars and packaged goods. I may live in a huge city but I back onto a conservation area full of little critters and we do have to be aware of mice coming in especially in the cold weather. I know that you have a cat but a few traps wouldn’t hurt.

    On the very top shelves – either side – I store things like paper towels, lightbulbs, paper plates etc.

    I then have a metal “trolley” on wheels – 2.5′ long by about 8′ wide – 3 shelves that hold the large glass jars of what I’m currently using for rice, pasta, grains. Just trying to give you an idea of how much you can actually get in to a not so large space – perhaps your closet of doom could be better utilized?

    I am lucky to have a large linen closet – so on the floor I can store a laundry hamper along with liquid detergent and bleach – I have enough of both for nearly a year – again, think about how much you will use. My sheets and towels take up two shelves and then toiletries, loo roll and kleenex take up the rest – with the paper items up top so even if they fall on me it’s not going to hurt!
    The toiletries are in small lidded bins that stack and then plastic baskets that go on top. Again, think about use – I may only have 4 bottles of shampoo on the shelf (1 in the bathroom) but that amount will do me for at least 6 or 7 months – you have to prioritize your space.

    My kitchen lower cabinets hold my dish detergent, cleaning items, garbage bags etc. – in boxes with lids and open bins stacked on top – label them if you need to.

    I have an old fashioned kitchen but it does have a tall narrow cupboard – that holds oils, jars of mayo and salad dressings, oxo cubes etc. – all things that I cycle through a lot in cooking and that I want to have on hand. I have a small – 2 foot wide metal shelving unit that just fits between my fridge and stove (I have an 8′ x 8′ galley kitchen) and this holds all my pots & pans, mixing bowls, a lazy Susan with all my herbs & spices that I currently use and kitchen utensils – you can use metal S hooks to hold things like strainers and frying pans – if you can fit one of these into your kitchen that might free up some cupboard space – I would then stock the cupboards with items you will use over the next couple of months.

    In my dining room I have one of the 3′ wide metal shelving units like you have in the bedroom but I have it covered with a set of curtains – matching pair on my kitchen window – and this keeps things tidy. I keep my toaster oven and most of my other small appliances and baking utensils on this unit. Things I want close to hand but don’t necessarily want to look at every day. The curtains just go on a tension rod and hook onto the top – top shelf is still open for use. I use this curtain:

    I use the top of my bookcases in the dining room to hold decorative tins. These hold things like candles, ziploc bags, rolls of plastic wrap and foil, all my extra herbs and spice packets. I then have a cabinet in the dining room – dark wood like the bookcases – and this is my baking cupboard. Flours, dried fruit, HM vanilla, mixes, cupcake paper, parchment paper etc. Again, close to hand but no one knows by looking at it.

    In my living room I have a dresser – perhaps something from your parents’ home would be available – and the top drawer holds all my kitchen and dining linens. Second drawer holds scarves, gloves, mitts, sun glasses etc. plus vitamins, vaccine certificate duplicates, rapid tests etc. Bottom drawer holds extra blankets, throws, covers. But again, no one else needs to know this.

    By my front door is a small cupboard – it used to be open to the apt. hallway and it was where the milkman dropped off your order – when they used to deliver. The hallway side is bricked up now but it’s a handy little space where I store hand sanitizer, masks, flashlights, battery powered radio – all those emergency supplies that you want on hand and don’t want to have to search for!

    I am thinking about buying some bed risers to give me more space under my bed so that I can buy some flat bins for storage – maybe not food but things like out of season clothes, hot water bottles, non food items etc. Perhaps moving those sorts of things from their current spaces would free up space for more food in your home?

    Everyone organizes differently – I like to have things tucked out of sight but you might be a more visual person. I have helped a number of friends to declutter and get organized so I have noticed that you really do have to adapt to the person. I don’t need labels – but you might. I don’t mind stacked bins but you might prefer more open shelves. Try to take this into consideration as you work on your decluttering. And don’t try to do it all at once – you’ll be exhausted. Oh, and don’t go out and buy a ton of organizing items until you see what you really have – a lot of times once you move or get rid of certain things you will find that this will then free up baskets or boxes etc. that you can now put to good use.
    Sorry, to be so long winded but this is really my area of expertise – as I said – friends have me come over to redo their places and they (only half jokingly) ask to check out my closets when they come over. Good luck! 🙂 Love your channel – down to earth, practical and with a dry sense of humour!

    • July 29, 2022 at 3:49 pm

      Oh, thanks so much for that. I shall proper read that with my cup of tea when I finish work tonight – in about 10 mins

  • July 25, 2022 at 10:47 pm

    This is an American Youtuber that you might like to check out. She is also very down to earth and not crazy doom & gloom!
    She has posted for a few years so you can pick and choose for ideas.

    This is her latest video:

    At about the 14 minute mark she starts to talk about changes she is making on how she organizes things and how she has rethought what she will buy and how she will use it. I thought that it might be of help to you. Enjoy.

  • August 1, 2022 at 7:04 pm

    Re: Water – I store some gallon jugs of water and occasionally pick up a 2 litre bottle or even a 24 pack of small bottles on sale. Our water supply is safe and plentiful – but – living on the top floor of an apt. building, if the power goes out this can affect my water supply as it takes electricity to pump it to the upper floors – sometimes apt. dwellers don’t think about this. If you are on a well it can also be an issue since the pump uses hydro. People don’t always think about this aspect of things.

    I also live in an old building where the water can sometimes be turned off due to repair work so it is best to keep some bottled supplies on hand. If I use any of this water I reuse the jug by filling it with tap water. I label this jug as “cleaning” – it would be perfectly safe for drinking but would use it first for washing and cleaning if needed (would prefer to boil it for drinking). I empty and refill these bottles about every 3 months. I keep these bottles in a separate area of the pantry.

    It is an absolute disgrace that the private companies in the UK are so negligent about the leaks while continuing to give out dividends to share holders. The vast majority of water plants, sewage treatment plants etc. are not privately owned in Canada but are run by the local municipalities – I pay for my share of these services in my rent and through my taxes.


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