Add this to the list of things you cannot buy…

I’ve literally just heard the news that we are now facing a shortage of Paper Towels due to the pandemic. So you can add that to the growing list of things you never expected to not have access to. It’s right up there with Toilet paper, yeast, fitness equipment, soap, spaghetti sauce and more. Crazy times man!

On a recent visit to my local grocery store I did see some very bare shelves in one of the aisles as I was searching for fly traps. I didn’t take any notice at the time as to exactly what was missing because I rarely go to the cleaning aisles anymore since I made a concentrated effort to be more Eco-conscious in what products I use (check out the blog post I wrote about that here).

If there is one thing that we are learning in these unprecedented times, it is that the things we take for granted in daily life can suddenly “disappear”. How does that make you feel, being reliant on others for your essential needs? I, for one, don’t like that feeling. So I am trying to do something about it. I am taking small steps, but now realize that those steps are making a huge difference for myself and the household.

For me, it only makes sense to learn to be less reliant on others. That is a trait that’s been ingrained in my very being since I can remember. Most people are fine with relying on others and that is not necessarily a bad thing. BUT…learning to care for yourself can bring huge rewards and a sense of accomplishment. From growing your own vegetables, to mending a shirt are simple things that we have not had to do for ourseleves because everything you could ever want is available at the click of a mouse or a trip to the nearest town. Or it used to be that way…

Now, unless you are one of those extreme couponing aficionados and have a bunker somewhere fully stocked, we really should be prepared for when things go astray.

Here is a list of a few things you can do for yourself:
Tomato and Eggplant Galette made entirely from scratch, with homegrown veggies and the tomatoes I bartered for.
  • Learn to bake and cook meals from scratch. This has more than one benefit! You will know exactly what is in your meal and if you cannot order food for delivery you will have the knowledge to cook an entire meal for yourself.
  • Try to barter or trade. Some people feel uncomfortable doing this but in most cases it’s a win-win for everyone. Just recently I swapped some of my fresh picked carrots with a neighbour for some of her garden tomatoes.
  • Learn to sew, knit and/or crochet.
  • Grow your own food. This can be done in any space from condo balconies to acreage properties. Your crop can be canned for storage and you won’t have to fight anyone in the pasta aisle for tomato sauce! Root vegetables are some of my favourite crops as they will keep for months in the pantry.
  • Learn to bake bread and to do it without yeast (I don’t think I will ever forget seeing the online spats between people regarding the shortage of yeast this year)
  • Learn to make your own soap.
  • Make the switch from paper products such as Toilet paper and Paper Towels to a more sustainable and easily accessible kind (think cloth napkins, or make your own with your newfound sewing skills) and you will never wonder how to clean up that mess without a paper towel again!

My first time growing potatoes
I have so many red and yellow onions being stored for the long winter

Once you’ve mastered a few of these things you can proudly pat yourself on the back because you are closer to being self-sufficient in times of disaster, pandemic and of course, Zombie Apocalypse.

If you have any tips for becoming more self-reliant I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment or drop me a line.

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