Last week, I went to the grocery store, as usual. I bought a dozen eggs, three cans of tomato sauce, some cinnamon and some teriyaki sauce for stir fry. I came home and opened my food cupboard doors and tried to put these items in (except the eggs) and they came flying back out, along with a number of other items already in the cupboard, including tomato sauce, cinnamon and teriyaki sauce. The eggs, I put in the refrigerator…on top of two other cartons of eggs.
Roy picked up the two bottles of cinnamon spice from the floor and asked, “Why did you buy more of things you already have? They won’t fit in the cupboard as it is.”
“That’s the problem,” I began defensively, “I don’t have enough cupboard space and that means I don’t know what I have, so I buy more of it. I should really have a pantry.”
“If we had a pantry, you’d have enough stuff in it to survive a nuclear holocaust and the zombie apocalypse,” he predicted. “Clean out these cupboards and use some of what we have.”
I threw a package of butterscotch pudding at his retreating back. It’s okay, I could spare it since I have four others and that one was expired anyway.
I’ve always had a reputation as a bit of a hoarder, but it’s really only because I’m disorganized. Without telling Roy that he was right, I decided to go ahead and clean those cupboards and get an inventory. That way, I could plan meals around what I have. Makes sense, doesn’t it? Cupboards were cleaned and the first meal from the contents of it was on the table that evening.
“What’s this?” Roy said, approaching the table with caution. “I smell…well, I can’t really decide what I smell.”
“I made a little sauce for the chicken,” I told him proudly. “I made it with the ingredients of the cupboard and a few eggs…I seem to have a lot of eggs.”
We sat down to the meal and Roy took several manful bites before he put down his knife and fork in some haste.
“Okay, I’m not sure what’s in your sauce, but the flavors don’t seem to be working together,” he began, feeling his way cautiously through this food mine field.
“I used powdered sugar, dry brown rice, brown sugar, teriyaki sauce and pumpkin pie spice,” I said. “It’s a daring combination.”
Before I was done giving him the list, he was up and scraping his plate in the garbage. “Why in the world would you use a combination like that?” his face was screwed up in distaste.
“I had three bags of brown rice, five bottles of teriyaki sauce, a container and three more bags of brown sugar and eight of those containers of pumpkin pie spice,” I answered unhappily, adding, “You said use what I have.”
“And the powdered sugar?” he asked testily, patently ignoring my attempt to shift the blame onto him. “Why did you put that in?”
“I have three bags in the cupboard and about eight more in the freezer,” I said, counting on my fingers, “I could coat the entire driveway with a layer of powdered sugar.”
“Maybe you should,” he said through gritted teeth as he made himself a peanut butter sandwich…using the only jar of peanut butter I had.
“Oh, no! I need some to frost the apple braids we are having for dessert,” I answered brightly.
“Apple braids! One of those things will feed eight people. Oh, let me guess, you have a lot of them.”
I opened the freezer and two packages of the apple braid fell out, “I counted seven of them up here and I haven’t looked in the basement freezer.”
“Well, at least we’ll get a powdered sugar frosting, that’s normal anyway,” he sighed, looking them over as they sat on the counter. “What are those lumps in the frosting?”
“Frozen corn,” I answered. “The freezer’s pretty full too and I have six bags of the corn.”
Now, I don’t need your criticism, dear readers…I need you to take some basil leaves and sage off my hand…I’ve got a little extra!