A couple of weeks ago, after attending a Relief Society meeting on food storage, I decided to assess our family's long-term food supply. It had been tucked into a messy closet since our move here, so I spent most of last Monday digging it out. Gavin's bedroom has two small walk-in closets, and I decided to use the larger of the two as a food storage room. The closet switch was a pretty big project by itself, but I'm thrilled with the results. Those shelves are just begging to be filled, don't you think?
During that process I discovered/remembered that a friend had given me four dozen empty #10 cans when she moved away three years ago. It was time to figure out what to do with them. I consulted a few people and ultimately decided to borrow the stake's home canning machine and can some food myself. So last week I drove down to the LDS Church's home storage center and picked up some supplies. Garry and I decided to add rice, sugar, and dry milk to our storage.
The next step was washing all of the cans that had been sitting in open boxes for three years. Garry and Tyler helped, and we lined them all up on the counter.
Then this morning, my friend Colleen brought the canning machine over and we got to work! Colleen was sweet to help me fill and seal my 60 cans when she just had four of her own to do. I couldn't believe how much we got done in just over an hour.
It turned out that I didn't buy quite enough food, so after picking up Gavin from preschool, I went to Costco and bought another 75 pounds of rice. (It was cheaper there than at the home storage center!) At home I finished up the canning in about 15 minutes. The machine is pretty slick, and super easy to use.
Now I have ten boxes full of food. We may not be able to live for a year on the small quantities of wheat, rice, sugar, and dry milk that we have, but it's a start.