Simple Ways to be Ready for Emergencies

Simple Ways to be Ready for Emergencies

On July 2, 1997 a tornado decided to pass through my town.  Only one person died, and that was because he had a heart attack while trying to remove a tree from his lawn.  I remember huddling in the basement with my two cats and my dog.  I just about jumped out of my skin when the neighbor’s chimney blew off and smacked the side of my house.  Christ that was loud, and scary.  But what was worse was what happened after the storm.

My house was intact except for some ripped off siding thanks to being hit buy a chimney.  However, I had no electricity, hardly any food, no batteries for the two flashlights we had, no batteries for the small radio we had, and no candles.  I was up the creek with no paddle.

I will never be caught without batteries or candles again.  I have lots a flashlight including cheap basic ones for the boys to use.

I will never be caught without batteries or candles again. I have lots a flashlight including cheap basic ones for the boys to use.

I grabbed my keys and got in my car.  After I pulled out of the driveway I realized the street was blocked by fallen trees.  I literally drove over people’s lawns to try to get to the drug store!  Once I got to Rite Aid I went in, grabbed the items I thought I would need only to get to the register and have the cashier tell me that the power was down so they couldn’t ring up my stuff.  I showed them what I had and handed over $30, above the amount it cost but whatever, I needed the batteries and food.  I was glad I had gotten there so quickly because suddenly it seemed like everyone in town was making a run on Rite Aid for the exact same stuff I had just grabbed.

Back home I parked the car and heard a lovely hissing sound coming from my car.  I watched as my tire quickly went flat as a pancake!  I had picked up a nail.  We were without power for four miserable, unbelievably hot, sticky days!

The next time I was unprepared came when AJ was just a toddler.  It was the Great Blackout of August, 2003.  Being a mom had made me more cautious, as did the events of September 11th.   So I was good on important stuff like food, batteries, diapers, wipes, etc., but then came the big “GOTCHA” moment.  No water!  No power to the pumping stations meant no water to the houses.

Once I learned on my radio that we were not under attack by terrorists I once again headed to the store, with a toddler in tow, to buy lots and lots of bottled water.  At least this time there were no trees or four inch nails.  Three days later when the power returned we rejoiced, but I was wiser.  I had been caught short twice, and I hated it.

So now I have a stockpile.  I buy in bulk at Costco and also when I have some awesome coupons.  I have had relatives laugh at me and call me a hoarder, but a two  and a half ago I spent 4 months in a wheelchair because of multiple foot surgeries all at once.  My stockpile saw my family through that predicament.  My husband only had to run to the store on his way home from work to pick up fresh dairy, meats and produce.

 DSC_2357

I am sure there are doomsday preppers out there who would look at my stockpile and laugh, but I am NOT preparing for the end of the world as we know it.  I am preparing for the next blackout, the next Hurricane Sandy, or the next Swine Flu virus.  I want to know that in the event of a real honest to god emergency my family is covered for a couple of weeks if not even a little longer.

 DSC_2344

I am not going to list everything I have on hand.  You can get all the lists you want from a quick Google search.  A great starting point is here http://www.ready.gov/build-a-kit.    Plus, you need to have what your family actually needs.  We don’t need diapers anymore, but I do have a month supply of all my RA medications put to the side.  Each time my drugs are refilled I use the old bottle and put the new bottle in storage so the ones in storage are always fresh.

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If you haven’t put together a small stockpile or a plan for emergencies you might want to start thinking about it.  Also, I didn’t acquire all this over night.  My stockpile took months to put together using a lot of coupons. Each week at the market try to buy three items for your stockpile.  It will grow faster than you think. DSC_2358

DSC_2359

PS- The best place to buy bottled water is Costco if you didn’t already know.  You get twice the bottles for the same price of every where else.  In fact I need to pick up a couple more cases now that I am looking at this picture!

~Tina

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Comments

  1. Love this! I have no stockpile and I really should. We tend to grocery shop for one week at a time only, so we’d really be in trouble if the power was out for an extended period.

    • That was the exact situation I found myself in when the tornado came through. I was due to go grocery shopping in two days, so the house was pretty much bare of food except for condiments and dry cereal. You just never know when Mother Nature will turn on you.

  2. Oh it was refreshing to see your stockpile. Thank younfor the tips.

  3. i love your stockpile. it looks so great. im on the fence about stockpiles. im scared we wouldn’t use it up before it expires anyways. the toiletries im good with its just anything else. I think i would just adore the pile too much to ever put a dint in it. maybe i’ll just admire your pics for now.

    • It is funny you said that. AT first, once I got a really nice stock pile going I did hate using it, but then you have to use it because food (even dry goods) will begin to spoil. Plus, you are always going grocery shopping so you will replenish it as you go. I remember feeling heartbroken once I was out of the wheel chair looking at my completely barren shelves. But I just started clipping those coupons and started all over. It is better to have it than not have it!

  4. I’m all for a stockpile but I do not have any space. I guess I could make it happen in the garage or maybe the attic, which may fail me for a tornado, but I guess not for power outages and such. Thanks for being so down to Earth about it all!

    • After Christmas invest in some of those big Tupperware style storage tubs. Then find a place in your house or garage where you can stack them about three to four high. Make one tub batteries, flashlights, candles, first aid supplies and necessary medicines. Make another can goods (tuna, baked beans, Chef-boy-ardee, etc.)with a manual can opener. The last two can be boxed dry goods and peanut butter. It’s not perfect, but its a start.

Trackbacks

  1. […] can get much more comprehensive lists from a quick Google search for FEMA or check out my post on The Zombie Apocalypse.  Plus you know what you family will and won’t eat or their special needs.  You don’t have to […]

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