I have a ledger book that I use to write the things I purchase for my prep cupboard. After it is put away, I mark it and group it together on another page with similar items. Maybe I will but 20lbs of rice and store It in the kitchen for a week or two. As that time passes perhaps I will buy Band-Aids and gauze and aspirin and toilet paper for prep. As the items come in, they get logged with a date and the name and amount of items purchased. I don’t write down the location because this is a list to tell me I have these items and they need storing. I have a catch all cabinet where they find temporary housing.
When I have a minute, to store and straighten, I move the items and cross them off the entry ledger. They are then logged in to the ledger page assigned to each bin or cabinet or closet. They have a date stored, number of items and date to be pulled if freshness is a factor.
This second list is something I copy when a container is full. I scan it into the computer and print one to be packed on top, inside a bin or container.
I did some studying of landscape and horticulture in the past and the reason so many historical gardens are mentioned is their planners and keepers had the foresight to keep good records. As awful as it sounds, great record keepers on southern plantations are responsible for descendants of slaves finding their way back in time. The tradition of record keeping in farming and business goes back before biblical recording of the creation. In ancient Egyptian and Sanskrit, records of shipping and farming have been found. Before man wrote the stories of God, he preserved records of business and farming.
A return to this tradition is coming. I know you think you know what you have and where it is. My challenge to you is to list it. I dare you! Without looking in the closet, tell me what’s in there. If everything you owned were blown away in a tornado and your insurance adjuster told you all you have to do is tell what was lost and they would write you a big check, how much of your stuff could you list? How accurate, down to the last shoe will your list be?
Keep good records. I keep my ledger book so I can see what I have and not purchase too many of an item that may be not so essential and to be sure I purchase the things that are.
I keep records of what I germinate, plant and reap from the garden so I can see where I need improvement. My gardening records include dates fertilizer was applied and what type. If there is a marked change in the weather, it is noted. However else could I learn?
We all know that there are shot records, health records, and school records being kept for us or about us. Get control of that information. You need to have your booster shots updated. Get those records in front of your face and learn from them what you have and what you need.
You need to stock ledger and recording material with your prep supplies. I realize if you are bugging out in a hurry, you may not have room for all your supplies. We will all be making do with what we have in that case, but the important records for taxes, property, health and prep goods are things you need on top. When and if the crunch time passes you need tom prove this is your home, these are your kids, this is the state of your life as you have recorded it. Cave painting is not enough to tell the whole story. Keep good records.