This one is because most all of us are staying home and starting to get really bored. You may also have been among the panicked and ran out to buy a ton of stuff (needing it or not) in preparation of the virus “stay at home” order. Now what?
You may have grabbed things that you believe contain a longer shelf-life. Do you even know what a “shelf-life” means? Well, for those who do not:
It is the length of time you can keep food until it gets nasty, icky, buggy, or smelly, and you MUST throw it out.
If you do know what it means when was the last time you checked “use by” dates?
We have a small farm and a large pantry, so this is something we regularly review. (We also practice rotation, but that is for another time.) My email this morning included a good one from familyhandyman.com, and it’s all about pantry items and shelf-life:
Yes, Virginia, even cereal, can go bad. My older sister picked up our depression-era mother’s bad habit of hoarding. She didn’t go crazy on everything like you see in the hoarding shows, but she was obsessed with food. Her pantry put ours to shame.
I was always very jealous of her pantry, at least until recently. She passed away suddenly in 2018 (way before the pandemic), and since her passing, I have been trying to help her husband go through things in the house. Somethings, he had no real clue on how to handle them or why she had them. He is overwhelmed with losing her, so going through things that she managed is tough for him. I suggested he start with the pantry and expiration dates. We actually had a giggle at her expense one day. He pulled things out from the back of the pantry that were over a decade old – A DECADE!?
You have to remember that we three daughters were raised by a Depression-era Survivor mother. Her family raised her to SAVE EVERYTHING, yes, even bits of string, because you never knew if you were going to need it later and could not afford it. If you sit and think about it, that is not so different today:
- Many people instantly out of work.
- Items in stores are growing a bit scarce.
- You find yourself wishing, more and more, that you had hung onto that rubber band on the bag of fruit you bought last week.
- The big news is how to grow your own food (back then, some called them Victory Gardens – another story for another time) even if you live in an apartment.
So, this is my share for today – check your expiration dates, please!
Stay Safe! Stay Well!
You can also check me out at: https://helbergfarmstories.com/ for fun stories from our farm.
Paraproskodian sentence for this post:
“Why do Americans choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America ?”