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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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  • [March 19, 2020] - Effective Mar 17, this blog will no longer accept advertising. The reason is very simple. If I like a product, I will promote it without compensation. If I don't like a product, I will have no problem saying so.
  • [March 17, 2020] - A return to blogging! Stay tuned for new tips, resources and all things food related.
  • [February 1, 2016] - An interesting report on why you should always choose organic tea verses non-organic: Toxic Tea (pdf format)
  • Sticky Post - Warning: 4ever Recap reusable canning lids. The reports are growing daily of these lids losing their seal during storage. Some have lost their entire season's worth of canning to these seal failures! [Update: 4ever Recap appears to be out of business.]

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Thursday, June 16, 2022

A Short Update and Observations

It has been a very busy month!  Starting with asparagus and now onto strawberries. I love this time of the year when local produce is starting.  It takes very little effort to stay busy.  At the same time, I kept doing what I'm doing given the current geopolitical events.  

Organic asparagus from my produce delivery guy is $4.50/lb.  We went out to a nearby organic asparagus farm and got it for $1/lb so I was rather pleased with that!  I canned plain asparagus and cream of asparagus soup base, dried and froze asparagus.  Local strawberries are going for $5/qt at the farm but Walmart put Ontario strawberries on for $3.97/qt which saved a bit of money as well as gas and time to get them.  I decided not to make strawberry jam this year so only wanted a couple of quarts for dehydrating.  

In terms of my food observations over the past month.  Our local Dollarama has increased their food space from about 3/4 of an aisle too 1 1/2 aisle.  But, just because it is at Dollarama, doesn't mean it's cheaper.  Canned beans were $1.25 but Walmart price was $0.97 so now it is even more important to know the prices.  There are still some good food deals too.  No Frills has pork half loins on sale again and quite frankly, pork has been one of the best deals since the first of the year.  Avocados have increased by $1 for a bag of 6.  Honestly, the surprise was the increase in Spanish and red onions!  One Spanish onion cost me $1.69 and a red onion $2.17!  Salad kits have increased by $1 per bag too.  Packaged lunch meat has increased by $1 per 2/pk.  Classico tomato sauce was 3/$7.50 at No Frills and $4/$10 at Walmart.  The beauty with this sauce is you can reuse the jars for home canning so a bit of a win for stocking up and adding to your canning jar collection.  Both No Frills and Walmart are giving more space to their food brands likely because the perception is store brand is less expensive.  Good deals can still be found for dried beans and lentils. Some candies and chocolates are still quite inexpensive.  Campbell's soups are buy 5 or more for $0.80 each at No Frills but the last time they were on sale they were $0.49 with no minimum purchase.  Milk is definitely creeping up in price.  Sundry items like toilet paper and garbage bags really haven't increased in price. 

If you pay attention to the predicted food shortages, citrus is supposed to be in short supply this summer.  I picked up a large bottle of real lemon juice that was one of three left.  There was still a lot of orange juice and since hubby starts his day with orange juice, I bought an extra jug.  I also canned 3 L and plan to buy a few cans of frozen orange juice.  Quite frankly, orange juice is one of those foods that's a bit more difficult to stock a large supply.  

Canning supplies have not followed their normal sales trend.  They typically go on sale when strawberries start but so far all canning supplies have not gone on sale and are actually seeing an increase in price.   A carton of 12 - 500 ml jars is $14.99 for Bernardin and $12.99 for Golden Harvest.  Canning lids are averaging $6 for 12 lids.  Pectin, pickling spices and canning salt have all increased in price.  Enterprising home canning know how to work around these minor annoyances.

Farmer's markets (the ones that come to town each month with stalls) have started back up.  I haven't checked their prices yet because ours tends to be more of a mini craft show with a bit of overpriced produce tossed in.  This is definitely the year to grow as much as you can.  There have been some very good deals on vegetable and herb plants, averaging about $1.50 per plant so I managed to get most of my containers planted for about $20.   All the plants for my Kratky passive hydroponics system were started from seed  indoors.  I'll be harvesting beans, peas and lettuces soon.  And, I have 3 cute little lemon trees growing! 

Garden Gnome

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