Apr 4, 2011

Misawa Monday Preparedness Perspective

(Wow, I've always wanted an alliteratively titled weekly post!  Sweet!)
Today's guest post was written by my friend Janeen.  Also known as "Healthy Friend Janeen".
Janeen and her husband Merrill (who is Doug's good friend and also a Dentist) were our "Sponsors".  That means, before we even moved here, we were e-mailing them asking questions about Japan, and they were helping us get housing and setting up our post office box.  I liked Janeen before I even met her and was determined to win her friendship with baked goods of the overly sweet and chocolaty variety.  Little did I know she's one of the most fit people on this base.  She's a certified personal trainer, she teaches SPIN, does (and wins) triathlons, and she teaches a class on plant-based eating and nutrition.  Plus, her house is super clean.  It's frankly astonishing that we're such good friends.
Them and Us!  (At Tokyo Disney)

So What's in Your Bag?

We had some neighbors (good friends) who used to make fun of Mormons for their emergency bags. Haha They have seen the light and even went to the store the week after with another LDS friend and list in hand of what they needed for their own bags. Nothing like a little earthquake scare to shake you into action, eh?

This post is dedicated to what I wish I had known or had on hand before the big quake in our 72-hour emergency bags.

We were low on decent flashlights. We did have a few, but the Buzz Lightyear and the Princess flashlights didn't really cut it. But the LED flashlights were great.

I had sort of not given much thought to candles in the past - I am such a de-clutterer that I have been known to get rid of them. We had two that I had been given as gifts recently that worked out really well. We perched them on a tall dresser (out of reach of little people) and with the reflection off the ceiling they did a good job. They also smelled good, which was an added bonus.

So I spent a good chunk of time on Monday getting all of my stuff out of the closet designated for our 72 Hour kits. I am embarrassed to say that we didn't even have a kit for our 22-month old. (oh the shame!) I have some crazy friends who would go through their 72-hour-kits every 6 months (usually during General Conference weekend). I'm totally on board with that idea now! In fact, we are starting THIS conference,  just to start the tradition. Also, this way my kids can see what is in their kits. (*My kids so wanted to be a part of the packing of the kits, but there was no way that I was going to let them pack 4 lbs of Pokemon cards - if Pokemons really had powers?... maybe)

I found quite a bit at the BX (pleasant surprise), but we had to order a few things too. We ordered stuff from Survival Solutions (they made a special trip to the USPS just for us, they normally ship FedEx), Emergency Essentials and the American Red Cross.

So in the Kits:
- 2 Radios, both are battery operated AND have a hand crank (batteries packed separately in case they corrode) (*ordered one of them from American Red Cross)
- Sterno cook stove and flammable bases
- Flashlights, LED (with extra batteries packed separately because they corrode over time)
- 2 28 LED lanterns (the Lanterns were awesome at night because they could light up the whole room)
- Candles (we have one that burns for 100 hours, and some others that have multiple wicks)
Waterproof matches
- 1 small can opener
- 1 emergency tent/shelter (very primitive; folds into a little bag)
- Sleeping bags (same sleeping bags as we use for camping, just stored in a different place so they are easier to grab)
- 2 emergency blankets (think shiny & reflective & light, not warm and fuzzy)
- First Aid kit (our family doesn't have any Rx meds, but that is something to have extras of - we put band-aids, Tylenol/Advil, ploysporin, sunscreen, splits/bandages, etc in there -- I just cruised through the pharmacy aisle to see what we'd need)
- Ponchos for everyone
- Cash!!! (If your electricity is out you can not swipe a CC and you'd can't get money from the ATM)
- Personal hygiene items (in mini travel size, toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, lotion, hand sanitizer, folding brush/comb, feminine hygiene...)
- Toilet paper and wet wipes
- Hand sanitizer
- Multi-purpose tool, hatchet, mini saw, work gloves, duct tape
- Little games and activities: UNO, Rook...
- Food: Little handheld Tomato Soups, Rice and Beans, plain oatmeal packets, granola bars, apple sauce, fruit cups, crackers and peanut butter, cereal bars, dried fruit, nuts, gum, chocolate, plastic sporks
- Water (recommended: 1 gal/person/day)
- Water purification tablets
- We also have our important documents in a ready-to-grab folder

That is all I remember off the top of my head. 
So get it together!

Thanks, Neeners!!!


Melissa @ Little Raindrops said...

Awesome! We found that our emergency kits were not quite sufficient. :-p I'm using this list as a model and will definitely be repacking for the future. Thanks, Janeen & Emily!
Ohh and psst -- reread your alliterative title! Unless I'm just not familiar with the word 'paeparedness', then disregard. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I'm all about being paepered!! I just printed off Janeen's list plus the things you already told us to include. I told the fam,"If we don't learn from these guys then we're just plain dumb!" You have been so awesome to share with us the things you have learned. I am trying to get us more ready. We even finally refilled the big blue water barrels - miracle. Why is it so hard to do what you know needs to be done? We WILL update the backpacks this week.

P.S. I got my shells and sand in the mail today! That was an fabulous surprise! Thank the Buggie for me! Loved talking to him yesterday for a couple minutes.

Anonymous said...

How much cash do you have out? What would be sufficient?

Holly Baker said...

I am glad to have found this on pinterest. Nothing is better than getting advice from the trenches!

Anonymous said...

I say a hundred in small bills for each person would be best but any amount is better than none.