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Remember the 25 lb bag of rice my Mom-in-Law gave me last Spring?  Wow, is it ever tasty!  I’m enjoying it more than ever now because it is finally safely stored deep in our largest cupboard.  It took me about three months to find the perfect storage solution.  This is essential when you live in Coastal GA (aka…The Land of Bugs the Size of Squirrels).  The J-man and I do not want to attract any bugs.  We are traumatized enough by the one or two that occasionally slip in (what secret passageway have they discovered?).

One day, soon after receiving our large gift of rice, my friend Kelli and I were ordering lunch at a local deli.  I noticed that they had empty dill pickle buckets for sale!  Two dollars seemed a bit pricey for a five gallon bucket.  Maybe that’s because we always had plenty available when I was growing up.  Dad has an uncanny knack for finding them along the side of the road, but since he now lives too far away to give me one, I bought the bucket.

I had high hopes for that bucket, but the dang pickle smell would not come out.  No amount of bleach or sun would budge the smell out of there.  I gave up.  I filled it with potting soil and planted some basil seeds (they seem to adore the smell of dill pickles).

But what about the rice???  For the time being I had it somewhat secure in a square plastic storage box, some ziplock bags and a few quart jars.  I didn’t trust the bags, and I had other plans for the box.  The hunt for the ultimate rice storage container was still on.

About a month later, while wandering through the local hardware store, I found the perfect solution to my rice storage dilemma.  1/2 gallon mason jars!  I didn’t know such a wondrous invention existed on this planet.  I brought home a box of six for under 12 dollars.  Five of them are currently keeping the rice safe while the sixth waits to be filled with some yet-to-be-purchased bulk good.

It’s delicious rice, folks.  So far, we’ve eaten about a 1.5 quart jars worth.  I always use a rice cooker (another gift from my Mom-in-Law) which makes the whole process so easy!  And the J-man tells me that it tastes just like his Mom’s.

So next time you find yourself in the local Asian Grocery Store (or China Store, as my dear old Chinese friend Meilin would say), look for the huge bag of jasmine rice with two red elephants emblazoned on the front.  You won’t regret the purchase!

Have you ever received a huge gift that you weren’t quite prepared for but learned to love???