Nov 30, 2011

One More Preparedness Post...

I mentioned how cool I thought Sam and Adrienne's wood burning stove was, right?

Sam cooking up some delicious Lemon Chicken
Well, it got me even more motivated to get my emergency "stuff" in order.  I'm using the closet under the stairs as my food storage/72-hour-kit storage.  (We have very little closet/storage space here.)  At the moment, everything is just shoved back there and it's all pretty inaccessible.  But at least I have most of the stuff I need.
For example,  I bought 6 of these backpacks:

One for each member of our family.  I want to transfer all our 72-hour stuff into these.  Some of our stuff is already in backpacks, but not rolling ones.  And some is in boxes.  I want everything uniform and clearly marked.  Also, these should give us more than enough room for everything including one backpack full of spare outfits.  (Should be pretty light--Gray can pull that one!)

I looked at quite a few different options before buying these ones.  They're not the highest quality, but that meant they weren't as expensive and they still got good reviews.

They're also not the cheapest option, but if I'm fleeing somewhere and my kids are schlepping along behind me dragging their 72 hour kit, I don't want anyone's handle to break in half or wheel to pop off.
(Once they're all packed and ready, I'll print and laminate some cards for each one with emergency contact info, etc.)

I bought a few more of these so we now have one for each boy:

(If the power is out, they can wear it around their neck to be hands-free, and also, it's harder to shine directly into my eyeballs.)  These come with new batteries in the plastic shell packaging, but we also have plenty of spare AA's.  (I think these take 3 AA's, but it might be AAA.)  Last time the power went out here, I found two water bottle lanyards for Max and Sam and hung them from those.

When I get it organized and cleaned up, I'll post some pictures.

I've also started buying #10 cans of grain, and we got our first water barrel!

Not this exact one, but same thing:

Adrienne had about 10 under her house.  But hey, baby steps to preparedness, right?!?
(Note:  My sister Laura told us not to put this directly on cement or concrete, but up on wood.  So I bought a 2x4, had it cut into thirds at Home Depot, and we put our barrel on top of the wood on the side of our house...and then filled it with the hose.  We did not treat the water with bleach because it's clean enough coming from the hose already.  And this isn't water for drinking.  We have bulk water bottles for that.)

Oh, and one of the reasons I'm writing this post:  To pass on this brilliant tip:
Tami read somewhere the other day that a family who lost power, took their solar garden lights from their yard, and used them to light their house.

I think this is a brilliant idea because;
1.  No fuel or batteries needed.
2.  No fire hazard from candles tipping over.  (A real concern when you're being rocked by multiple aftershocks after an earthquake.)
3.  They're being continually charged--and stored--right in your yard, ready to go!

And from the looks of it, you can buy a ten-pack for around 40 bucks.  Not too shabby.  (Plus, you'll have cool little lights in your yard!)

I thought that was two smart not to pass on to you.  Because even if I had these in my yard, I probably wouldn't have thought to bring them in if the power went off!

Now what about you?  What have you done to prepare for an emergency lately?  Any more brilliant tips for me?


Diane said...

Thank you for sharing! Wonderful ideas. I have the big blue water barel, and no water in it yet. I need to get working!

Beeswax said...

Like the solar light idea!

DeAnna said...

Solar lights are a great idea!

In place of wick candles I bought flameless candles from Costco in a set of 28...we actually used them when the power went out for a few hours and it was below freezing outside.

I found them very handy as then I could use them for a light source that wasn't being shone in my eyes and then I used by regular candles to keep the house/pipes warm. The idea was to avoid too much C02 building up from the regular candles. And they allowed me to distract my freaked out kids by letting them place them thru-out the house while I lit the candles for heat.

I also used my tin cooker, you know the one where you take a large metal can, use the can opener to punch holes around the top and bottom. Then roll up cardboard and put it into a small can, then pour wax all over it. Then to use it you light it and put it under the can. I remember using it at YW Camp, but again was amazed at warm it got and how well it worked for heating up soup!

Definately need to work on my 72 hour kits though. Thanks for all the great ideas!~

jefferies said...

We bought a solar panel kit from costco so we can charge our cell phones, and power some basic electrical appliances, etc. WE are still planning on buying some extra car batteries that we can fill up with the solar power as a backup. Thanks for your tips. We're always trying to think of new things! Ever since the earthquake in Japan, we keep thinking that we're going to get one on the west coast any time... Hopefully not, but best to be prepared!