fall pantry-clean-out top ten, y'all

     My husband was called out of town on business... a trip slated to last three days, tops. He was in sunny California for six. Subsequently, I had some free time on my hands... you know, since husbands require quite a bit of upkeep.
     Bright and early one morning, I began the arduous task of cleaning out my pantry and food cupboards. I was inspired by a recent cleansing at work... in our commercial pantry-room.
     I'm a bit more lax in my own kitchen. I don't purge as often as I should. I've compiled a silly little list of things I discovered while cleaning. More serious organizational stuff might be useful another time, but for now, in my delirious, I-have-a-hoarding-favorite-dry-goods state, hilarity is the order of the day. (If you need REAL help organizing your pantry, look here.)
Here's the top ten:
1. I own enough dry pasta to feed Italy. The country.
2. There are nine varieties of rice in the Rice basket and not one is long-grain white. I heart: short-grain brown, long-grain black, Camargue red rice, Valencia pearl, saffron yellow, Caribbean pineapple-coconut rice mix, organic five-grain and two types of arborrio risotto rice, (Campanini and Nano.)
3. I was horrified to learn that I'm nearly out of mustard. I only found six bottles. (Read the mustard-hoarding story here.)
4. The winner of the longevity-in-the-pantry/ most-outdated item award goes to a small box of Jello brand Cook-and-Serve Banana pudding mix, dated November of 2006... An entire year before we even moved into this house. Ugh, smh.
5. If you ignore mini marshmallows long enough, they form a solid mass, taking the shape of the container they're in. Once they've assumed this shape, marshmallows are reticent to give up their new lodgings. I'm sure given a large enough quantity, you could use them as foam insulation.
6. An old, forgotten potato will eat the paint right off a pantry shelf.
7. I have a slight obsession with anything saucy and anything used to make something saucy... but I don't stop with one type of anything. Variety is the SAUCE of life. In my arsenal are several types of each: barbecue sauce, chutney, jam, relish, mustard, salsa, vinegars, oils, syrup, oriental sauces, hot sauce, flavorings and extracts. I also like things that are pickled and brined.
8. I never think to myself, "Let's bake something!" The baking section is sorely neglected. The new can of baking powder is two years old.
9. I have a lot of canned pumpkin... it's a good thing that Autumn is here! Time for Pumpkin-Apple Muffins!
10. I have more than enough, am so blessed with abundance. I'm pledging to buy less, use everything I purchase and try not to buy out every sale on imported pasta or French mustard I happen to stumble upon... (Okay, okay. I did say, TRY.)
Psalm 65: 5-11
 "You faithfully answer our prayers with awesome deeds, O God our Savior.
You are the hope of everyone on earth, even those who sail on distant seas.
You formed the mountains by your power
    and armed yourself with mighty strength.
You quieted the raging oceans
    with their pounding waves
    and silenced the shouting of the nations.
Those who live at the ends of the earth
    stand in awe of your wonders.
From where the sun rises to where it sets,
    you inspire shouts of joy.
You take care of the earth and water it,
    making it rich and fertile.
The river of God has plenty of water;
    it provides a bountiful harvest of grain,
    for you have ordered it so.
10 You drench the plowed ground with rain,
    melting the clods and leveling the ridges.
You soften the earth with showers
    and bless its abundant crops.
11 You crown the year with a bountiful harvest;
    even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.
I Peter 1: 2, 3 "Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.  His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness."   

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