Our Vacuum Sealer

Nesco American Harvest Commercial - Grade Vacuum Sealer

We use the Nesco American Harvest Commercial - Grade Vacuum Sealer that we got from Blain's Farm & Fleet.  We chose this model for three reasons:  1) commercial grade; 2) it also seals jars (compatible with most other food saver type sealing system components) and 3) it was $59.  

This little item paid for itself the first time I realized that we saved money because nothing was freezer burned, and we stopped throwing leftovers in the trash after they sat for a week unused in the fridge.  This simplified our camping strategy for providing nutritious food items for our camping trips, just like we would serve at home.  We use various bags designed for these units, but we have had the best luck with and recommend the one gallon or quart sized bags rather than the roll that you can cut to length.  Sometimes the rolls have holes, and will not be airtight.


Our Meals

Boil and Serve Concept

The "boil and serve" concept is on that came about during a camping trip because I got tired of spending more time cleaning up messes from meal time than I did enjoying the outdoors with the kids.  I know that it's nothing new to most who have been camping for any amount of time!

The concept is to prepare nutritious meals ahead of time (either on purpose, or from leftovers) and freeze them in our deep freeze.  This concept goes hand in hand with our cooler concept of NO BAGGED ICE in our food cooler (Ever!) and also supports our "low cleanup initiative".    We carefully plan most of our meals out so that we can simply heat them up using boiling water, which serves two purposes:  1) we get a hot meal, and 2) water is already heated up for what little cleaning up is needed.  I say most of our meals because sometimes we just pull what's in the freezer with no real plan at all!  If it says "Camping", it's fair game!

Is it that big of a deal?  Well, I decided that I'd rather not spend time preparing, cooking, and then cleaning up a mess after a big meal. I would much rather see the sun set over the Collegiate Peaks, watch the reflection of the fire dancing in the eyes of my little ones while making S'Mores, or listening to the giggles of them just simply enjoying God's creation!