How we are ending our pantry challenge year 2018

How we are ending our pantry challenge year 2018

We started 2018 in our house on a pantry challenge for the month of January, we followed it through the whole month and had a great start to the year. It changed our way of thinking on more levels than just getting our cupboards straight. It made us re-evaluate our wants from our needs, it highlighted our lazy go to habits when life is not playing so nice, it brought us in line with seasonal provision.

Frugal Pantry Challenge

The months  following January  yoyoed  quiet a bit, our intentions, aims, wobbled when we had lots of people staying, when health wasn’t so good, when we just got plain tired.  Sometimes we forgot our aims, carried along re actively to the busyness of life.

April- month of reflection

As November rolls by I have found myself increasingly reflecting on how 2018 has been for us, as Christmas is just around the corner I want to remind myself of intentions and hopes that were manifesting this time last year. What has 2018 imparted to us?. Are we any wiser?, any more living in our truth, are we more fulfilled today?, what did we feel we grew in? in what areas have we experienced disappointment?..


I’d like to think I am learning to enjoy being in the present moment more, being present in the journey. Working at the allotment allows me to be fully present with my task, I get to observe the world and the amazing beauty that surrounds me. I find space when working with the earth and the seasons, to see more clearly which stories we are engaging in are bringing us fulfillment, happiness, and which are those that rob us of our joy.

Cooking for Joy

Over the next few weeks Children are returning for the holidays, extended family are staying over, gatherings are planned for family meals together. I need to remember to slow down, live intentionally, be less focused on outcome and more engaged with being present, like Mary of the  Martha Mary story in the Bible. The stress of a material based Christmas seems crazy when Christmas is really about loving, giving, sharing, Kindness, selfless love, being together, sharing memories.

GD and I feel we have laid down some strong and fundamental foundation stones this year, which we continue to live from and grow from.

The food we have harvested from our allotment has amazed us, our veg and fruit feeds us now and will continue to feed us during the colder months, having been processed, frozen, dried, canned or bottled.

Allotment no.10 is blooming

It has been an incredibly challenging year, adjusting to differing circumstances on many levels, but besides the challenges have come great rewards, simple times of walking along the beach, along the cliff tops or deep in the woods, watching fireworks together, having friends and family stay and we have shared days with both at home and away.

Our youngest graduated this year and now works hundreds of miles away in the city, we are so proud of him and all he has achieved, but we miss him also so keenly. Our eldest’s family finally realized a dream to own their own house, another fabulous move but also a little farther North than before, a little farther away. Another of our boys moved to live locally this year and set up home with daughter in law and their dogs Daisy and Ella, sadly we recently saw the passing of Ella who was Daisy’s loving mum.

The Joy of Ella and Daisy

Yet another amazing turn has been our see our eldest sons family also move down last year, all settled and thriving, doing well in work and in schooling, making new friends and enjoying the lifestyle that living in Cornwall offers us. And the first of our family to move here four years ago our middle son and daughter in law, loving their life and continuing to explore and have adventures we never could have imagined possible.

I think GD and I are working well to simplifying Christmas this year, we have last years intentions coming into play, the intentions of last year have sown the seeds that are maturing into good habits this year, this year we are letting go of some things, not trying to do it all, not setting up expectations, paring down so that the true meaning of the season can flourish and come home.


2 thoughts on “How we are ending our pantry challenge year 2018”

  • Well done, you two! Even greening and simplifying your lives a little is fantastic and you have done so much! Your self sufficiency in veg is really inspiring.. And it will be extra useful if we ‘ crash out’ of the EU, lol
    I too want to simplify Christmas …it will be easier this yet as dear son is travelling in Nepal and won’t be back ( sniff!) And dear daughter comes to us having done her first semester of a Masters in Environment and Sustainability near Malmö, Sweden so SHE won’t mind eschewing the commercial even more than usual. Yay!
    All the Best to you,
    Little Owl ( Alex)
    PS you do write beautifully

  • Thank you Alex for your lovely comment!, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the time you take not only to read the post but to also comment with such encouraging words. I hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas, best wishes, Deb xx

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