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Lockdown, shopping and Covid-19

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We are in lockdown

My very neat pantry
The best place to shop during lockdown

South Africa is in lockdown in the hopes of flattening the curve of Covid-19.

What does this have to do with shopping?

Well, a lot of people went panic shopping and cleared the shelves of essentials. I can understand fear, I cannot understand selfishness.

Not everyone was able to buy, some don’t have the money until they are paid and then there was nothing to buy!

Panic shopping

Those that emptied the shelves in their panic are going to be paying the price. They bought too much; maybe the cans and dried goods will be used eventually but what about the food that will go off?

How many times are those people going to need to go to the store? How many times are they going to expose themselves and their families to the possibility of contracting this virus and bringing it home?

Endangering the lives of others

We are in lockdown and should, where possible, avoid going out. We are a country of at-risk people, with TB, HIV and diabetics. Think carefully before you leave your home for any reason.

I have had my say and now it is time to concentrate on what I really want to focus on. How to keep safe and still feed your family.

This is an emergency

In 2016 I wrote a blog post about surviving an emergency.  At that time it was focused on the floods we were having. The principles still apply today.http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/how-long-could-you-last-in-an-emergency/

Now, more than ever, it is the time to meal plan. The reason for this is that when you meal plan you are able to reduce the number of times you need to go to the store.

I usually meal plan for the month and then order online for delivery, however, it has not been possible to do this for April.

Meal Plan Template
A blank template that I use for ideas for themes

I will try to plan for two weeks at a time and then go shopping. If you have never meal planned before then consider only planning for 1 week.

Choose one day of the week where you are going to go shopping. Meal plan for the day you go shopping, up to and including, the day you are going to do your next shop.

We are in lockdown, plan ahead

Because we are on lockdown I suggest planning all three meals plus 3 snacks per day. Even for experienced meal planners, this can be a challenge.http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/3-meals-a-day/

For those who are going to be living on reduced wages, think carefully when you plan, you want food that is filling and still healthy and nutritious.

Canned beans are on the top of the list; check out the KOO website for recipe ideas.http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/koo-beans-budget-beaters/

Use garlic and ginger when cooking as they are natural immune boosters. A fresh stick of ginger can last a long time in the fridge and garlic when stored in the open will also last for ages.

I have loaded lots of recipes onto my site but there are so many wonderful recipe ideas out there, Allrecipes.com and Yummly.com are a great source of recipes for all levels of cooking skills.

When you begin meal planning start with dinner, choose the protein then choose your vegetables and starch. http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/dinner-theme/

Then move to breakfast, you are stuck at home why not try something different. Alternate, don’t have the same thing every day, it is going to be a long 3 weeks.

Now it is time to pick your lunches. Make them fun, don’t stick to the same thing you make during the school week.

Lastly, it’s time to plan your snacks.  The catch with snacks is that we often tend to eat them all at once instead of pacing ourselves, so when you do buy snacks make them a little more difficult to get to.

Don’t be afraid to get the whole family involved in the meal planning.

Shop at home first

Once you have drawn up your meal plan it is time to create a shopping list. To do this you will need your recipe.

List every single ingredient in the recipe and then go shopping in your cupboards. Cross off everything you already have on hand.http://kasheringyourlife.co.za/home-shopping/

The next step is to do all your shopping in one trip. If you need to go to the pharmacy or doctor do this on the same day you go shopping, if possible.

Once you get home please wipe down all your groceries before packing them away and then wash your hands thoroughly.

Only one person should go shopping at a time. This is sometimes not possible and in those cases, it is even more important to limit the trips you take out of your home.

It is far from over

While it may look like the numbers are dropping, they will rise rapidly in the next few weeks as results come in and people who refuse to follow the lockdown rules and quarantine recommendations spread this virus.

Stay home, stay safe.

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