Thursday, September 19, 2013

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of September 22nd)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,


"You will come to know that what appears today to be a sacrifice will prove instead to be the greatest investment that you will ever make."     (President Gordon B. Hinckley)

Food storage and emergency preparedness is a sacrifice, it takes money and our time, but it will prove to be a great investment when needed.

Once again we hear and see in the news about a natural disaster that has effected many people. Boulder and other outlining communities in Colorado, US have been devastated by pouring rain and massive flooding.

Experts say in some areas this is the 100 year flood, in other areas the 1,000 year flood. Lives have been lost, property has been lost, personal items have been lost and many were trapped for days without any help. It took days for helicopters to get into the areas where people were trapped due to flooding, lost roads and bridges. Emergency personnel, medical help, and rescue teams could not get into those trapped. They had to wait for the rain and winds to stop so they could fly in helicopters to rescue the people.

What would you do if you and your family were trapped for days. Could you survive on your own? Would you have food to eat and fresh water to drink? Would you have medical supplies on hand to treat the injured? Would you have a way to keep  warm, a way to cook, have light and shelter? What would you do? Do you know how to use the emergency equipment (like tents, generators, cooking stoves) you have stored?

This is way I stress so much about being prepared with food and water storage, emergency supplies and medical supplies. This is why we need 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Backpacks for each family member. You say it will not happen to me, but do you really know that? Why not be prepared for what could come your way? Why take a chance?

Weekly Assignment: 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Backpacks and Food Storage

This week we are continuing to put together each family member's 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Backpacks. Last week I gave you some other items to add to the Backpacks. Please review last weeks posting.

While you are gathering those items and adding them to the backpacks please make sure you have put in the Food Kit and Water, the Personal Hygiene Kit and Stressor Kit for each family member's backpack.

Note: Some people do not feel it is necessary to have an extra set of clothes and it takes up to much room. If you do not want this then that is alright. Personally I want to be dry and comfortable in an emergency situation, especially children. If you do not want to add clothing, maybe at least have an extra set of under garments and socks. Having your feet dry is very important if you are walking. 

Once you have completed them, keep the backpacks in an easy access place in your home (like a closet near an exit door), your garage or your car. It is a good idea to have one at work also. You may be at work when a disaster or emergency situation happens. Make sure your children have some type of emergency preparedness kit at school too. Check out the posting dated "Week of August 4th" (2013) for ideas.

The key to any food storage or emergency preparedness supplies is Rotation, Rotation, Rotation! Do not forget to rotate the food, water and medications in your 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Backpacks. If kept in the house you should be able to rotate these items once a year. If kept in the car, or garage and if hot, then you should rotate the food, water and medications about every 6 months. Do not throw the food and water away, use if up before the expiration dates and replace as soon as possible. Do not remove the food and water from the backpack until you have purchased the replacement food and water. Some food and water is better than nothing.

Once you have completed each family member's backpack (the whole family) please email me at Why? You will receive a special gift, an items to add to your 72 Hour Emergency Preparedness Family Bag we will start working on the second week of October, after The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints General Conference (October 5th and 6th).

Food Storage Assignment:

Each week, or when you go grocery shopping,  try to add some canned or packaged foods your family will eat. Only store what your family will eat! Watch for sales so you can purchase even more. Before you know it you will have a week's supply, two week's supply, a month's supply, 3 months supply.

Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

What will happen when the trucks and freight trains stop moving?

Living near the Los Angeles Harbor where large freight ships come in from China and other countries everyday we see the big semi-trucks loading up and hauling the large containers to different areas locally and around the country. As we travel across the United States on road trips we see the semi-trucks and freight trains loaded with the large containers full of food, water, live stock, medical supplies and other merchandise. Living in California we also see trucks from local farmers hauling their fresh vegetables and fruits to local stores and farmers markets. We see trucks carrying gas for our cars driving down the highways and filling up the underground gas storage tanks at gas stations. Each week the local city sanitation company comes by and picks up our trash. What will happen when they come to a stop?

"Most Americans, and maybe in other countries, take for granted the intricate systems that make it possible for us to engage in seemingly mundane day to day tasks like filling up our gas tanks, loading up our shopping carts at the local grocery store, obtaining necessary medications, and even pouring ourselves a clean glass of water. When we wake up each morning we just expect that all of these things will work today the same way they worked yesterday. Very few have considered the complexity involved in the underlying infrastructure that keeps goods, services and commerce in America flowing. Fewer still have ever spent the time to contemplate the fragility of these systems or the consequences on food, water, health care, the financial system, and the economy if there are interrupted.

A shut down of truck operations as a result of elevated threat levels, terrorist attacks, or pandemics, (or natural disasters) according to the report, have 'a swift and devastating impact on the food, health care, transportation, waste removal, retail, manufacturing, and financial sectors.' (American Trucking Associations)"   (SHTFplan)

If this happened, there would be significant food shortages in as little as 3 days; there would be fear, and panic and looting; water supplies of clean drinking water will run dry in 2-4 weeks; medical care and hospitals will be jeopardized by medical supply shortages and pharmacy stocks of prescriptions will be depleted quickly; service station fuel supplies will start to run out in just 1-2 days; air, rail and maritime transportation will be disrupted; within days of a truck stoppage, Americans will be literally buried in garbage with serious health environmental consequences which cause rich breeding grounds for microorganisms, insects and other vermin; replenishment of goods will be disrupted; just-in-time manufactures will shut down assembly lines within hours; ATM and branch bank cash resources will be exhausted quickly and regular bank functions will cease.   (American Truckers Association Report)

While an event that could disrupt truck transportation may be unlikely, look what happened when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans. "Panicked government officials stopped all transportation flow into the region, forcing hundreds of trucks loaded with emergency supplies like food and water to wait for permission before they could enter the area. As a result, thousands of residents of the city were left without items essential for survival. As you know, it took days before truck routes were re-opened and supplies were allowed to flow." (SHTFplan) A natural disaster like a major earthquake, flooding, Tusnami, hurricane, toranado, etc., or a pandemic, could quickly shut down the trucking infrastructure.

What would happened if it was national, not just in your community? What will happen to our truck infrastructure if a major earthquake hit the southern California area, or your area? Will you be prepared to take care of yourself and your family? I sure hope so!!!

Comments: All your comments, ideas, suggestions and experiences are welcome! We all learn from each other. Thank you for your comments. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of September 15th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

National Preparedness Month

September is National Preparedness Month. "We cannot change the past but we can learn from it and prepared for the future. We never know how, when or where a disaster or emergency situation will occur. And there are varying degrees of emergencies from a major natural disaster or terrorist attack to losing a job." (

We need to be prepared both temporally, mentally and spiritually. Emergency Preparedness and Self-Reliance are a part of living the gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Temporally we need to have water and food stored (preferable a 3-months supply), shelter, a way to cook, some source of light and heat, medical supplies and other emergency supplies. Mentally we need to learn basic first-aid skills and survival skills, how to set up a tent or some type of shelter and how to cook in an emergency situation. Spiritually we need to learn how to listen to and follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost for guidance and protection. When we feel we should do something, we need to act on it right away, it may save our life or some else. 

This is a great month to get together as a family and reassess how well we are prepared and what we need to do to be prepared and better prepared. We should do the following...

1) Inventory our food and water storage quarterly. Use those items that will expire soon and replace them as soon as possible. Check to see what we need to add. Change the water in our water barrels if needed.

2) Check over our emergency supplies, like our tent, cooking equipment, lighting, heating, medical supplies, shovel, ax, crowbar, saw, chain saw, paper supplies, extra prescription medications, etc. If they
need repaired, repair them now. If they need replaced, replace them as soon as possible. Know how to use them.

3) Have a family evacuation plan. Practice family fire, earthquake, tornado drills and evacuation plans. Do you have a second story fire ladder and fire extinguishers in your home and car?


4) Have an out of state emergency contact person that each family member knows and carries with them in a wallet, purse or backpack.
In an emergency situation, call that person, report where you are, how you are and if you are going some place else. 

 5) Never let your gas tank get below half a tank. If you have to evacuation you will have enough to get you to a safe place. Most gas station pumps will not work, they use electricity. ATM and credit cards will not work either.

Remember: "If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear."

Weekly Assignment: 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Backpacks

Once again, congratulations if you have completed the 3 kits in your 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Backpacks, the Food Kit with Water, the Personal Hygiene Kit, and the Stressor Kit. If you have not completed the 3 kits, go back to the December 30, 2012 posting and follow the weekly assignments until you have completed all 3 kits for each family member. I know it is a lot and can be expensive if you have a large family. Add the items as you can, when you see them on sales. Many of the items can be purchased at discount stores like the 99 Cent Store and the Dollar Tree, and department store dollar bins, but be careful with the food and their expiration dates.

There a couple of more things to add to your backpack to make them complete...

This week add the following (you should have most of these items around the house, or you can go to a thrift store):

1) Change of comfortable clothing including socks and under clothing. Long pants and long selves shirts are best to protect you from the elements. Remember to check these items twice a year. Children grow and we also change in weight.
2) Strap a baseball cap to the shoulder straps of the backpack.
3) Sunglasses. They do not have to be expensive, just something to keep the sun out of your eyes. Keep in a side pocket of your backpack.
4) A good pair of sturdy shoes. Especially if you keep your 72 Hour Emergency Backpack in your car or at work, and ladies, if you were high heels or sandals to work, they will not be comfortable for walking. I tie mine to my backpack straps so I will be able to grab them quickly and I know where they are.
5) An old sweater, sweater shirt or light jacket like a windbreaker. Kept with my backpack. I can quickly tie it around my waist and be off with my backpack.
6) Small LED flashlight with batteries and your 5-1 Emergency Whistles we added a few weeks ago. I keep these items in a side pocket for easy access.  I have found the small LED flashlights at discount stores like the 99 Cent Store, the Dollar Tree, etc. 

A great Family Home Evening activity would be to get all the kits together with the items above and place them in your backpacks. Check out thrift stores or use last years school backpack to save money on them. With a permanent marker write each family member's name on their backpack.

Note: If you need help with these things click on the appropriated listing under "Postings" on the right of this blog.

Los Angeles LDS Dry Pack Cannery...

Important: The Los Angeles LDS Dry Pack Cannery and others in  California will only be open for your personal canning until November. This is a great opportunity to take your family, or go with another family or group, and can for your long term food storage. Children need to be at least 12-14 years old to help and 16 year old to run the equipment. Most items you will can will last for 25-30 years. See the attached link here for the list of items you can can and a printable order form. You need to call them ahead of time to make an appointment and make sure they have what you want can in sock. 

After November you will only be able to purchase pre-canned items. Not all items will we available. If you want to purchase them, call the LDS Dry Pack Cannery ahead of time so they will have what you want to purchase in sock.

Click here to find a list of LDS Dry Pack Canneries in your area.


Next week we will start on the 72 Hour Family Emergency Preparedness Bag. This bag is kept with the family's 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Backpacks, either in a nearby closet by the front or back door or in your car(s). 

Emergency Preparedness Warning...

A little over 4 years ago I woke up one morning startled with an overwhelming feeling that I needed to make sure our family was prepared. That things were going to get really ruff and we needed to be prepared. I did not know when or how, I just knew it was going to happen.  I also knew I needed to warn others. I prayed for a way to following the strong prompting from the Holy Ghost and how I could accomplish this task. A few weeks later I was called to be the Emergency Preparedness Specialist in our Ward. My prayers were answered. I also felt a strong feeling that one way I could get the word out to many was to set up an emergency preparedness blog. With the help of my daughter this blog as been accomplished. I feel so passionate about this and helping others to be prepared.  Please use this blog, and share it with others, so you can become better prepared.

Comments: All your comments, ideas, suggestions and experiences are welcome! We all learn from each other. Thank you for your comments. 

Friday, September 6, 2013

Weekly Assignment, Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness Ideas (Week of September 8th)

Hi Carson Ward Family, Family and Friends,

It only takes a second... 

It only takes a second for your life and your loved ones lives to be changed. If you are involved in a disaster, emergency situation, loss of a job, or even a serious car, airplane or train accident your life will change. It can happen to anybody, anytime, anywhere. Look what happened to the people of Alabama with the major oil spill, with Louisiana, US with Katrina, the East Coast (US) and other cities with hurricanes, with the Midwestern States (US) with tornadoes and droughts, and all over the world with major earthquakes. Many of these places and people are still suffering. It only takes a second!

Why am I so over the top about telling others about emergency preparedness, food and water storage, spiritual preparedness and being prepared? Because I would feel horrible if I did not warn people to be prepared for what may come their way and then something happened to them and their loved ones. They might come back and say, "Why didn't you tell me?". I know and have experienced the blessings of being prepared with emergency supplies, water and food storage and spiritual preparedness.

This emergency preparedness blog was created to help the members of my church, Carson Ward, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons).  Then I realized as it started to go around the world, it is helping many of you and your loved to be prepared, better prepared than you already are. It is to help you, and make it as easy as possible to follow a plan and set goals. Use it, share it with others and let it help you become prepared. The information comes from my 35+ years of experience and the experience of others they have shared with me.

So, take a few seconds with your family, make a plan, set small goals to accomplish your main goal and start working towards it a little at a time. No one can do this all at once. Use this blog to help you reach your goals. You can do it, just set some goals and start!

New Report shows future Tsunami Warning for Southern California!

Most of us remember when the major earthquake hit Japan causing a large Tsunami.

Up and down the coast of California, US were damages. The damages were not as severe as they could have been, but there was some major damage to boats and harbors in Northern and Central California, US. 

This week I heard on several radio and television news programs a report with a warning from the United States Geological Survey, that if a major earthquake was to hit Alaska (9.1), which caused a large Tsunami, seven hundred fifty thousand to one million people would be effected along the Southern coast of California, from Marina Del Rey to New Port Beach, possibly San Diego, US. Northern and Central California could be effected too. Those of you in California, US need to be aware of your surroundings.

Look for the Tsunami warning signs if you live near the coast and which way to evacuate. It is amazing how many people along the Los Angeles Harbor area say they have not noticed them. They are there, watch for them and be aware where you need to evacuate. Most of the signs in the Los Angeles Harbor point to getting on the Harbor 110 Freeway. This gives me some concerns. If everyone does that it will quickly become a parking lot of cars and the Tsunami waves could go over it, causing major damages and even death. I would also have several surface street routes to take, not major roads, but side streets. Map out several routes you could take for your safety and keep them in the glove compartment of each of your cars.

The U.S. Geological Survey said that if you are at the beach and feel strong shaking, leave immediately for higher ground. I have heard many reports where the people of islands that have experienced Tsunamis teach their children and grandchildren that when they see the ocean waters recede to get to high land as soon as possible, the huge waves are coming very soon.

They also reported that Los Angeles downtown is 600 feet above sea level and would probably not be effected by the Tsunami waters. When the Japan Tsunami hit it went in six miles. We drove from the Los Angeles Harbor down Avalon Boulevard and Main Street towards the San Diego 405 Freeway to see how far inland that would be. It was a little past the 405 Freeway. The report is also saying the Tsunami could effect the many Los Angeles rivers and water by-ways to the ocean. The Tsunami water could reach further inland than we think. 

Click on this link to read more about the story posted in the Los Angeles Times.

Remember: The best thing we can do in any disaster or emergency situation is be aware of our surroundings, following local government instructions and warnings, look for Tsunami warning signs in your area, have an escape plan and evacuate as soon as possible in a calm and orderly manner.

Weekly Assignment: 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Stressor Kit

This week add the following:

1) $3-$5 in change, preferably coins, per family member's Stressor Kit. Why coins? Because during an emergency or disaster situation when you need to purchase something like water people might tell you they cannot make change and you might be forced to give them a $5, $10 or $20 bill because it is all you have and you need water. It has happened many times during a disaster.

So far you should have the following in each family member's Stressor Kit--paper pad and pen or pencil with sharpener, 5-in-1 survival whistle, copies of insurance (adults only), family photo, activity book (age appropriate), list of family contact names and phone numbers, small travel size board game or card game (age appropriate), a small soft cover Book of Mormon or Bible, and a favorite reading book (soft cover, age appropriate, or small child's favorite book. 

Congratulations! Once you add this last item you have completed each family member's 72 Hour Individual Emergency Preparedness Stressor Kit. Place all the above items in a large plastic zip lock bag and write Stressor Kit and the family member's name on the front with a permanent marker. Place the kit in each family members 72 Hour Emergency Preparedness Backpack. 

Next week we will discuss some other items you should have in each family member's 72 Hour Emergency Preparedness Backpack besides the Food Kit, Personal Hygiene Kit and Stressor Kit. 

Emergency Preparedness Ideas:

Why do you need vegetable seeds in your food storage? 

Vegetable seeds should be an important of your food storage because there may come a time when you can no longer purchase them. If there is a disaster where for many months there is no access to food in the grocery stores you will have seeds to plant and grow your own vegetables. Many emergency preparedness companies like Emergency Essentials Thrive Life and others offer buckets or #10 cans of a variety of vegetable seeds that keep for up to 5 years. They are great, but a problem I have with them is that there may be vegetable seeds you would not grow because your family would not eat some of the vegetables. But, they would be a great source of bartering if you needed something. You could purchase individual packages of vegetable seeds your family would eat, but there shelf life may not be for 5 years. If you have a yearly vegetable garden then you can rotate your seeds, which is the secret to any food storage.

Comments: All your comments, ideas, suggestions and experiences are welcome! We all learn from each other. Thank you for your comments.