Be Smart . . . Be Prepared
The time will come in all our lives that we will have wished that we would have prepared for future events, be it personal (long term illness, job loss), natural disasters, pandemics, civil unrest, man made (chemical spills, contamination), community, or governmental. Do not get distracted from the priorities in life. One priority should be providing for your family by having food storage, water storage, emergency supplies and a rainy-day savings account on hand for such future events. .
I love this statement: "We can either choose to be like the Children of Israel in the days of Moses and wait for a sign, or we can be guided by the Spirit and the counsel of a living prophet today to become better prepared. The choice is always ours." (Valerie Albrechtsen, Prepared LDS Family)
I ran across this great video that makes it simple and shows the importance of why we need food and water storage. Please take the time to watch it and be better prepared. Some people say "it will never happen to me, especially where I live", but believe me, things can change in an instant. Yes, it may never happen to you, but why not be prepared just in case.
Important: In the video they say you can refill your drinking bottles. Do not refill the disposable plastic drinking bottles you get from grocery or big box stores. If you refile them they might become contaminated from bacteria that can produce and the chemicals in the plastic. Click here to read about how reusing a disposable plastic drinking bottle can effect your health.
New June Monthly Assignments
Food Storage: Pastas
Pastas are another economical item to add to your food storage. There are so many varieties of pastas to store. Only store the varieties your family eats. Figure out how much pastas and the types you eat for the number of months you have set you goal, 1-Month, 3-Months, 6-Months, 1-Year. Watch for sales. I find sales and the store brands at regular grocery stores, big box stores like Costco and Sam's Club, and if you have Trader Joe's (Western USA) in your area are great on prices. Emergency supply companies that sell dehydrated/freeze-dried pastas tend to be more expensive, but they are great for long term storage.
Storage: Pastas are easy to store. Pastas are like rice and bean, they attract moths.When you bring them home from the store, regular package types, put them in your freezer for 24 hours to kill any larva and moths. Let them warm up to room temperature before storing them away. Remember the rule: Store all pastas, no matter what type of container, in a cool, dry and dark place. Storage containers: You can store them in their original packages for up to the expiration date which is usual 1+ years. Or, you can purchase them in #10 dehydrated/freeze-dried cans for 20-25 years. You can also use the Mason jar canning oven method or the Mason jar canning FoodSaver method to store them for 3-5 years. (Go to YouTube for instructions. Whole Wheat pastas: You cannot store whole wheat pastas in #10 cans or using the Mason jar canning oven method or the FoodSaver method due to their high moisture content. Store them in their original packages up to the expiration date.
Emergency Preparedness: Water Storage
Water is the most important thing you should store. As I have said many times, "You can live without food for 40+ days, but you can only live without water for about 2-3 days".
The rule is 1 gallon per day per person for drinking and cooking. Some say you only need to store water for 2-3 weeks. But I think you should have enough water for 2-3+ months. If you store dehydrated or freeze-dried products you will need extra water to rehydrate them. If you store rice, beans and pastas you will need extra water to allow cooking time. If you want to include bathing, most likely just sponge bathing, you will need extra water.
There are several ways to store water. In 5, 10, 15, 30, and 50/55 gallon water storage containers or barrels, in16 ounce individual plastic bottles like Arrowhead water, 2 liter or gallon plastic bottles. Another idea I love is the Water Bricks. They stack like bricks and hold about 3-5 gallons of water. You can create tables with them and cover them with a table cloth. Water rain barrels are also another great source for collecting and storing water.
Water Filtration: Each household should have 1-2 ways to filter water in case you need to use other water resources like a lake, river or stream, or you are concerned about the safety of your stored water.
To see more ideas on Water Storage and Filtration click here to go to the posting on the right.
Emergency Preparedness Ideas
Could your family go for a day and night without power . . .
Are you willing to take the test to see how you and your family will do without using any power in your house for 24 hours?
In the 1980's we had a very powerful storm hit the Southern California Coast USA. We lost power for one week. We had no lights, no refrigeration, no stove since it was electric, power lines were down by our house and streets were flooded in many areas due to heavy down pours of rain for several days. Many were advised to stay home, schools were closed for the week. Our children thought this was great, no school for a week. Since some of the young children were a little scared without lights at night the whole family camped out in the front room for a week. With lanterns and candles we played board and card games, sang songs, read and told stories at night. In our family we have had popcorn every night since we were married in 1971. We were not going to let a storm and power outage keep us from our popcorn. We had some large #10 can emergency candles made of paraffin wax and saw dust we made at a church emergency preparedness activity. My husbanddecided it would work to make popcorn. We did not realize you needed to punch holes around the top edge of the #10 can before lighting it and setting a pan on it. He sat the can on the kitchen counter by the sink and light the wick and sat the pan on top, the flames shot out from the side of the can and caught the kitchen curtains on fire. We quickly pulled them down and put water on them. After a few minutes of punching holes in the side we were able to make our popcorn and we did not burn the house down. We were able to survive the week without power and able to heat up canned soups and other items. It was a great leaning experience for our family about how unprepared we were.
Take the challenge: For 24 hours do without power in your home. See how your family does. What changes do you need to make? What emergency supplies do you need when the power really does go out? Be prepared for a long power outage, even just one that last several hours.
Click here to read a great article about "Go Dark For a Day". There are some great suggestions on how to prepare and survive.
Your Outdoor Gear Is Your Survival Gear . . . Click here to read a great article from emergencyessentials.com blog.
Comments/Questions: Please share your comments below. We all learn from each others experiences and knowledge. If you have any questions you can leave them below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will research your questions and answer it on the blog next time. Thank you for your comments.