How the heck do you provision?

How the heck do you provision?

Oh so you now live on a boat, and you will not see a full size grocery store for a year. Panic slowly instills. What are we going to eat? Do I even know how to make half these things I bought?

First things first, we were spoiled in NYC. Bagels and coffee to go, daily lunch at the office, seamless at least 3 times a week, restaurants and the only thing we ever made at home aside from breakfast were blue apron or hellofresh meals, which require no thought or grocery shopping. And as if not enough, a 24 hour organic grocery store on our block just in case we ever needed anything at all.

Needless to say, how and what we eat will be one of the hardest adjustments to our lifestyle on this year onboard.

We spent endless days grocery shopping, and countless hours finding a place to store it all on the boat. Then we said we were done, and would spend hundrends more of dollars at another store. Then we were really done, oh but we forgot drinks! But now we are really really done, other than another $200 in fresh things, right before we left…

While we may have gone a little overboard, we did keep it organized. I made a spreadsheet with all the provisioning information which can be seen below for anyone interested. With the offline editing, I intend to make it a living document that I update as I pull things from their hiding spots. Mainly for 2 reasons, its too much to remember what you are out of, and you definitely don’t want to forget to buy, say salt, when you are only going to 1 store a month and cooking onboard 3 times a day.

Provisioning Spreadsheet

A word of caution, this is my very first time buying groceries for more than 2 weeks at a time, so I am no expert and not into this adventure long enough to know if I did any of it right. What I do know, is that I did a lot of research, and that with what we have we definitely will not starve, though startchy meals are in our future. One of the struggles we are expecting is having to learn to eat a lot of canned veggies. We are veggie lovers, but prefer them with a quick steam where they still have a crunch. Because of this, you will notice that there are not that many canned veggies onboard (we can manage carrots, peas, and corn). We hope to buy fresh anytime we can, even though we know it will come at a premium to US (even New York) prices.

In addition to what is on the sheet, we also bought 2 cases of wine, 3 packs of 18 beers, and 6 bottles of liquor. Refrigerator, freezer and more general items (snacks) are not listed in the sheet as we will be using these constantly and updating a sheet would be too much work.

Picture below was after the first run, I was too overwhelmed to get a picture when we had it all out, but its probably 3 times the volume of the below.

Once the food was done, we had to turn our attention to toiletries and cleaning supplies. Oh, and lots of mosquito repellent.

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