Monday, August 17, 2020

How many legs are your milk stool?

We had a real nice ride to grandson's parents in laws for his son's 4th birthday. She is half way between them and us. We had a nice masks/social distancing birthday party. We stopped to get baby formula for M at their local Walmart (was out like ours) but I got tomato paste, 25 lbs of flour ,25 lbs of sugar, 6 pack of root beer, 12 pack of Vernor's ginger soda (the only either of us can drink when sick), red ink pens and lighter fluid. 

I went through The Prudent Homemaker's site  and ordered onion powder as I am not going to have enough onions to dehydrate and grind and yet do some as pickled, garlic powder as I didn't plant garlic last fall (I do hard neck over winter and will be planting them this year), cumin and thyme. I have a couple thyme plants planted this year and they are doing okay but not enough to get me next month let alone a year from now. I made 3 spice blends that I was out of. Emeril's essence, Tightwad Gazette taco seasoning and Paula Deen's house blend. 

There is an ad on tv that the spokesman (I think Tom Selleck) talks about retirement and reverse mortgages.... comment is you want at least 3 legs on the retirement milk stool to stay stable. We started talking about our milk stool and how one of us dying would affect the other's milk stool..

Hubby will have Social Security, he has his IRAs , he has his business that he knows he could run into his late 70s as there are more than one hauling in their 70s around here.He would have my IRA's from Daddy if I died first.He has a life ins policy that if the loan is paid off it would have an annuity for him.

I will have Social Security (based on his as there was no way my income would come close to what he was earning), I have Daddy's IRA's  I have my life ins that has an annuity that I would still get even though I have a small loan on it .I would have Hubby IRAs .

That's not a bad milk stool for either of us... together the milk stool has 7 legs. 

IF the house is paid off we could do a reverse mortgage that gives us the 8th leg  None of the kids or grandkids want to live in this area so the house would be sold anyways.

And since in 2008 at age 81 Daddy went to living on his SS only and what ever he made on side jobs and stopped using his IRAs to allow them time to recover from the nasty hit they took we looked hard to see if something happened could we do the same. We are short $100 a month IF we have the mortgage and the work truck paid off. I think we could handle it even if we didn't make that amount to cover it.

Daddy's only issue (he had full coverage NO out of pocket FREE health ins from the company he retired from. Even when they sold the local plant they kept him covered under the home plant, he was very grateful) was putting food on the table.Brother, myself and Daddy's granddaughter from stepmother's side, put the food on the table for a year so Daddy was only paying for his milk and bread. When his IRA stabilized and he started drawing them again, he spent $40 a week at Aldi's and $60 a month at Walmart for non food items... He had enough TP, and paper towels stocked that when we cleaned out his house the 3 of us split it between us and none of us bought for 4 months. 

Hubby went down to the pantry with me (believe me he doesn't do that much) and we counted up meals with 5 veggies and 3 fruit a day along with 2 proteins.. can we go a solid year with only buying a bit of fresh and dairy? YES. THEN he stopped on the steps coming back up and asked if we could go 2 yrs. I was like... I could safely say yes to 18 months... Are we helping the kids or grandkids any or the neighbors? 

He immediately said yes to 3 of the neighbors, M &E as we could barter meat from them(they usually are yeast, flour, sugar and white vinegar (I know when she is canning pickles) and oil. I already have an extra month of that for that reason ... The other two are elderly (same age but in bad health and one is a vegetarian ). He thought about the kids  and knew who came to get food this last time.

We have 6 kids and 8 grandkids out on their own.. of that group I would say only 4 of the kids and maybe only 2 and 2 of the grandkids would ask for help. But they would be looking for green beans, pasta sauce. pasta dried beans and rice, the one would be looking for Navy beans.I think he is more Daddy's than mine when it comes to his eating habits.They would take tomato juice and make sauce themselves. They would be happier with homemade noodles in water if need be. yeast and flour to make bread maybe.. I told him I would add 3 months extra to help neighbors and kids/grandkids. BUT I would need to change what we planted in the gardens or get off the Amish to build that supply. He thought about it for awhile and came back and said... 2 yrs pantry with the acknowledgement we might give 3 months away. 

So I went back down and spent Sunday, the day of rest, really checking the pantry...since I was down there I finished cleaning the shelves in there and did the herbs and spices. 

I decided to add more veggies. I am dehydrating celery (out completely). I can do pickled watermelon rind (will be the first time, the watermelon was given to us and I will freeze some of it) I can do tomato chutney and green tomato relish.  More salsa (easy with getting tomatoes from N in a couple weeks) Beets for plain and pickling are coming in then also from A. I can dehydrate the tomato skins to make paste or sauce as needed... that's just time pulling the skins when making sauce. I can dehydrate any greens we have come in including lettuce to make "green" powder to add to dishes. I will need to get carrots to can.  I have some odds and ends coming in from the garden to help fill the pantry out. 

Hubby told me to figure a way out to at least use the hoop house cover to extend the growing season some... I need to do that today. 

To me , having the full pantry is another leg on that milk stool. I can focus on the money going to the bills and not worry about feeding us as long as I have seeds... I will be focusing more on heirloom and open pollinated.