Yep, you read that right. I don’t buy any vegetables at the store all year long.
And it saves us a TON of money!!
Side Note: I do buy potatoes, just because I haven’t mastered that vegetable yet…and my kids LOVE potatoes so much that I can’t keep them in the house fast enough!
But you want to know how I do it?
We grow our own produce then can or freeze it!
I have 4 kids, kids who love to eat. Kids who, thankfully, love vegetables…and fruit…and meat…and Pop-Tarts.
But, I do have to buy those 🙂
Anywho, all year long, I don’t buy vegetables at the store. I don’t have to, because I have learned (notice the italics here) the art of canning and freezing. You see, I didn’t grow up on a farm, or having a garden. We grew up in a rural community, but still. Not everyone does canning and freezing. I sure didn’t, my mom didn’t. My grandmother’s did, but you know, they were the Depression Era generation so that’s what they did.
Fast forward 25 years, we started having kids and in order to save money, my in-laws would send up canned and frozen vegetables for us. Not only did we get to eat those, I would cook them, blend, and freeze them for our babies. It was way cheaper than baby food at the store, plus it was very healthy.
After me and the hubs moved back home to our rural roots, my mother-in-law started teaching me how to can and freeze. (She was raised on a large farm and this is what they all did). It was so much fun learning how to do it. Plus, once again,
I LOVE MAKING MESSES!!
And in the kitchen especially.
And this is fun.
And it saves us a ton of money on grocery bills.
Now that we live on a small hobby farm, I have started really getting into it. We have our own garden. We are attempting our own composter, (yeah I was in the field scooping up poop just a couple hours ago to add to it), and we have our own animals that we eat.
Yes, Bessy goes in our freezer once a year.
Did I mention my kids are very thankful for that cow?
And those chickens that lay those eggs?
Just yesterday we were out in the garden getting potatoes in the ground. And yes, I’ve added a whole other row this year!!
Check out this cutie who is loving the garden life:
Garden time at our house is pretty much one of the favorite things our kids get to do. Run up and down the rows (before planting), right after it has been tilled, and get dirt in every nook and cranny of their bodies. (Yes, the boys were discussing this and showing each other this. Ugh, boys are so gross. ) Then a good hose down with some freezing cold well-water…it doesn’t get better than that!
But what about you? How can you save on your grocery bill all year long?
GROW YOUR OWN PRODUCE THEN CAN/FREEZE IT!
Don’t have a ton of land? No problem! Never done it before? Here are some ways to try it out before getting into a huge garden!
How I Don’t Buy Vegetables All Year Long:
- Don’t have an interest in gardening or have a green thumb? Go to a farmers market and buy the vegetables you need to start canning and freezing. Nothing better than supporting a local farmer. Plus, everything you need to know, those farmers can tell you most likely.
- Not a lot of space? Grow vegetables in raised beds. You don’t need a tiller, you don’t need a composter. A nice raised bed will work just as well. At Agrilicious.com , they have the exact layout plus dimensions to build your own raised bed. Also, check out: Frugal Momma on how to build a raised bed under $12. And check out this site to look at 15 different ways to make raised beds.
- Don’t want to spend the time making one? Go to Wal-Mart and buy a kiddie pool and potting soil. Voila. Hey, you won’t even have any weeds to pull. And yes, I do know someone who does this. And yes, I think it is way cool and way smart. If you go on pinterest, this is apparently a big thing. This woman here has a huge list of ways to start a garden using kiddie pools.
- Ready to go all out? Start a garden. NOW IS THE TIME! You don’t know how? Never done it before? Yeah, I hadn’t either. Don’t worry. Plants are pretty hardy. You just need some dirt, seeds, sun and water. God kind of provides most of those anyway 🙂 I mean, you can use a tiller, a hoe, garden gloves yada yada yada. But, the necessary elements are only a few things really. At www.weedemandreap.com they provide all the basics you need to know in order to get started.
In order to can and freeze though you will need a few staples: some jars, lids and rings, freezer containers, and pressure cooker. I’ll go into those more later.
So, save some money this year, make life a little healthier, grow your own vegetables and fruits or support your local farmers market!!