The picture is a snippet my pantry. It’s really not much bigger than that. I spent my Friday night reorganizing it and taking inventory since my mummy (my mom) is arriving from Chicago tomorrow. This might be boring to some, but it’s these seemingly mundane activities that make up life…at least my life. Social media may have you thinking that you need to be out taking selfies at some event or restaurant, but not me on this Friday night. I’m tired from my work travel and organizing helps me to relax.
My purpose was to make sure that I have food on hand that my mummy will eat and staples available so that I can easily prepare meals. I’m not one to let my pantry get low because I tend to collect items, especially when they are on sale. In a previous blog post called “closet shopping” (I’ll come back and link later…I’m not sure how to do it on the mobile app), I mention my past excessive shopping because of an underlying fear of scarcity as a result of growing up poor. It isn’t just confined to clothes. This is a constant work in progress. It helps that we live in a small space because it controls how much stuff I can bring in. However, the baskets were spilling over (notice the Ramen noodles don’t have a home).
My mummy has certain dietary restrictions, so unlike other out-of-town guests, she’s not going to be interested in eating out. There is something for everybody in the pantry including the kittens. There is a range of items too like organic broths, specialized oils (sesame), quinoi, rice, beans, tuna, taco shells, sauces, oreo cookies, a variety of nuts, and Ramen noodles. My son likes these, but he sautés onions and peppers and adds red pepper flakes to make them tastier. Of course, he learned that from me. I like to think that I’m a pretty savvy cook. I tried to get him to use half of the salty MSG seasoning packet that comes with them, but to my chagrin, he uses the whole thing. I eat the healthiest, but I don’t force my prefences on my family. I used to get upset when they wouldn’t eat my healthy meals, and for the most part they usually do, but I also like to experiment, which they don’t always like. I’ve tried to develop a thicker skin in this area when they reject a meal or don’t eat leftovers. I’m the one that’s over 40, hormonal, and need to watch what I eat, but I believe in balance so I’m not that strict. I eat healthy about 85-90% of the time. It also shows in my bloodwork because I got my lab results back recently. Now, my husband is 50 and I think he should be eating healthier, but let’s just say that I’m modeling the behavior that I would like for him to adopt. I do have limits on junk foods that I purchase though. For example, they know that I will not buy sodas.
My son and I tend to have similar tastes because we have broader palates whereas my husband and daughter have similar tastes in that they prefer foods without a lot of fuss. I’m attempting to avoid writing that they have more “simple” tastes, but essentially they do. They don’t like that much variety. With all the preferences, it’s difficult at times to determine what they might want to eat, even if I ask. I know its partially my fault because I used to be a short order cook (that is, in my house and not literally). Part of that had to do with my son’s food allergies, some of which he has outgrown. Whatever the case, I’ve gone back to a hybrid of old school. I will cook a meal, and if they don’t like it, they can make a sandwich or something else. In old school, all we had was that meal, so we had no choice but to eat it if we didn’t want to starve. My husband and I are able to afford more than our parents, so I make sure we have well stocked groceries.
As I admired my pantry, I acknowledged that I am the only one who cares about it being organized. I do it because it makes me feel better, and in theory, helps us avoid wasting food. That doesn’t always work because sometimes my husband will just buy items when he doesn’t see them instead of asking me if we already have it. That really frustrates me. It would probably help if I labeled the baskets because you can’t see the items at the very bottom of the basket. Go figure that I haven’t gotten around to that in 3 or 4 years.
I’m short on time, and although I could easily spend hours writing a single post, I don’t have that type of time today. There were other angles that I could have taken with this blog. I will have to explore in future posts. I really just wanted to write and share my story, which is what I accomplished.