Friday, 11 November 2011

Taking Stock

First things first - I needed to take stock of my kitchen. Can't plan menus and start shopping on a budget if I don't know where I stand - right? So I hopped to it: I needed to clean out the pantry/larder - whatever you want to call it. We moved four months ago so I wasn't expecting to find much. As I went through the fridge, freezer,  pantry and cupboards I learned three important things about myself:

  • I am a borderline hoarder
  • I am not a good housekeeper
  • I seriously need to get better organized
Granted, everything in the fridge/freezer couldn't be more than four months old but some things were just - icky. I thought I kept a clean fridge, That was a convenient state of denial. Housekeepers don't really clean fridges and I certainly didn't do a bang-up job - so what was I expecting? Certainly not the jars of moulded jams or the long, lost wilted celery sticks I found lurking in the dark corners. I never bent down to look at the back of the bottom shelf. It was like thunderdome down there - scary, rough and taking on a wild life of its own.

I cleaned like a madwoman until it sparkled. The fruit and veg bins glistened, the freezer was defrosted, wiped down and most of it's contents chucked. in the bin (freezer burn is just ugly I tell you). I threw out anything that looked suspicious or hadn't been used in forever - like that tube of tomato paste we brought from the last flat and a jar of capers that was nearly full but I was afraid to open (it's best to play it safe in these circumstances). But once I was done the fridge was worthy to receive food again.

Quite pleased with myself, I made a list of the remaining contents. All the basics were there: milk, butter, fruit, veg, condiments, eggs, wine - you know, the every day 'must have' stuff.

Keeping up the momentum, I eagerly moved onto the larder. Dry goods are trickier - I don't think to sort them. I chucked loads of spices like garam masala that I haven't used since the Tony Blair administration as well as some molasses that made the trip from NY with us. Then I put everything back, once again taking stock.

I need to get loads of containers, like the ones above because now that I'm taking a vested interest I want to see what I have without having to dig around. I want order and the photo above inspires me. I'm off to the pound shop later to get cheap plastic versions. My husband thinks that this is unnecessary spending but if I can get heaps for a £ or less, then it's not. And it's all for the greater good. Plus, we haven't started Project A Penny Saved 2012 yet. I'm still in prep mode. And I'm determined to make this work. You need to break a few eggs before you can make an omelet, no?

Now I'm ready to start making menu plans and budget shopping. Again, I have no clue what I'm doing. I'm sure I'll stumble but I will make this happen.

I know no one is reading yet so I'm going to do blog perusals for help. But if anyone is reading this - send help....or money....or wine.


  1. hello! I am new to Blogger and found you via a comment on Frugal Queen. Also trying to be frugal so will follow you x

  2. Hi Lula! Welcome. Glad to have you. I'm following you as well. Hopefully we'll both get the hang of this soon enough!


Tell me what you think!