Thursday, March 29, 2012

Stockpiling pros and cons

Tuesday I wrote about planning ahead and freezing meals in anticipation of my baby's arrival. In addition, I've tried to stock up on essential items, so that if my husband or I can't get to the store, we won't be in danger of running out of basics like soap, toothpaste, beans and oatmeal. But getting stocked up is harder than it sounds. For one thing, I tend to be an under-buyer, or at least ride the line between under-buyer and enough-buyer. (For more on under-buyers and over-buyers, check out The Happiness Project's post on this).

I hate buying something just in case I might need it later, but because I don't know exactly what I'll need once the baby arrives, and I won't want to be in a position where I have to go out to get something urgently, I'm trying to let go of my worry that I won't use the thing. For instance, medicine is one thing I hate buying without knowing if I'll need it, because it will expire, but it's also something you want to immediately available if you need it!

The pros of stockpiling are definitely the niceness of having what you need when you need it, as well as a feeling of preparedness. And for items I know will get used, such as chicken broth and toilet paper, I'm happy to have as much on hand as I have room for.

In my house, you can't have too much peanut butter on hand!
The cons are finding room for the extra amounts of things, keeping the items organized enough that you can find what you need, and actually using up the items before they go bad. That's why I generally don't recommend to clients that they shop at warehouse-style stores. They usually don't have enough space to comfortably fit all the paper products and toiletries they want to buy. The savings in money isn't worth dealing with the clutter of too much on a day-to-day basis.


  1. This is such a sweet post. I hope you continue to tell us about organizing with your new baby.

    And, we can never have too much peanut butter, either! Right now we have 4 unopened jars because I buy when it's on sale.

  2. I have started building up food storage now that I live in hurricane country and never know when I may be without water or power for weeks. It has been a challenge to figure out where to store it all and to keep it rotating so that nothing expires.

  3. Thanks for the comments! I will probably be posting some baby-inspired organizing blogs in the near future!

    Stockpiling for an emergency is smart, but rotating can be difficult. In restaurants, they follow the first in, first out rule, which means that new items that come in always go to the back of the shelves.