My heart is urging me to ask my readers, how prepared are you for an emergency? I’m sure there a few that will say, “I’m almost there.” Some people will say, “I’m just starting with food storage and emergency preparedness items.” Many will say, “Where do I start, I am overwhelmed with the thought of an emergency?” I am occasionally stopped at the grocery store and asked questions like, “Why are you buying so many cans of beets and green beans?” In Utah, it’s pretty common for people to purchase cases of food once a year when stores have their case lot sales in the fall. There is nothing quite as comforting as a small room packed with canned or bottled food items lined up in a row. I think the people that ask me must be on vacation and traveling through Utah because it’s normal to buy cases of the foods you eat just about every day.
I receive about 300-400 emails per day asking about food storage and emergency preparedness. Some I can answer rather quickly, and others I redirect to my website to get the answer(s) they need. I know that more people are watching the news and maybe are starting to “get it”, that we must have some stored water and food. The government can’t take care of us immediately after an unforeseen disaster or emergency. It may take them weeks to get food or water if our supplies are shut off. It may happen today, tomorrow or next year. We need to be prepared, I can’t emphasize this enough. Here’s the deal, you don’t have to have pallets of food delivered to your home. If you can afford to spend thousands, that’s awesome. I can’t. I grew up with food storage, grinding wheat, making bread and cooking from scratch. I didn’t know anything else. I applaud my mother for teaching me the skills of being self-reliant.
Tips For An Emergency:
Water is critical:
My favorite water preserver: Water Preserver Concentrate I use this one so I only have to rotate my water every five years. If you use bleach you need to rotate your water every six months.
- 1 gallon per day per person to stay hydrated. If you live in a HOT area you might need more.
- 4 gallons per day, per person, allows for personal hygiene, washing of dishes, etc. I highly recommend this amount.
- 5 to12 gallons per day would be needed for a conventional toilet.
- 1/2 to two gallons for a pour flush latrine.
Where do I start with food storage:
I put together a sheet that will help you get started. All you need to do is write down the food you and your family eat each day for seven days. Please only store what you will actually want to eat after an emergency. You can buy cans, purchase the staples to cook from scratch, and also pre-made packages of food storage where you just add boiling water. You can buy #10 cans where some will last 20-25 years if they are freeze-dried and in optimal weather conditions. Please do not store food storage in a hot garage, it will shorten the shelf-life significantly. Here is a PRINTABLE I designed: Where-Do-I-Start
If you know someone in your neighborhood that can teach the youth how to make bread, do it as soon as possible. I promise it is a skill they will find very useful over the coming years. I mean they will really need to know how to make bread. It takes practice. If you are intimidated about making bread, then learn to make biscuits or crackers. You will need that skill! I’m coming on pretty strong today because I truly believe we have got to bring back our ancestor’s skills. Bread making is one of the most important skills you will want to learn. If you have fresh ingredients and a large bowl anyone can make bread. Whole-Wheat-Bread-For-Two Recipe or White-Bread-For-Two Recipe
If you have a neighbor who knows how to sew, ask her to teach you. I’m thrilled when people email me and ask me what sewing machine to buy. I cherish those emails because I know there are people wanting to learn skills that we all need. I have a Bernina, but there are some really great brands out there. Just giving you the heads-up here, you don’t need the most expensive machine. But I would not buy the cheapest one either. You get what you pay for. My daughter bought a Janome for her daughter to learn to sew and she actually took sewing lessons. Proud grandma, here. I have had two granddaughters take sewing lessons. I even had a grandson learn to sew in high school and he is sewing on my old Baby Lock machine. Yay, this grandma loves this stuff!
I prefer a six-gallon bucket over the five-gallon bucket unless you are really short. These are the toilet lids I purchased: Tote-able Toilet Seat and Lid and this is where you can get the six-gallon buckets: (save the Gamma lid for something else) 6 Gallon Bucket with White Gamma Seal Lid
1. Box of 10-gallon size bags (500-count), I bought these at Costco. You can buy the green ones, but they are so expensive Kirkland Signature 10 Gallon Clear Wastebasket Liner 500 Count
2. Toilet paper – at least 3-4 rolls
3. Hand Sanitizer
4. Baby Wipes
5. A collapsible shovel
6. Kitty litter or sawdust to help reduce the odor
7. Duct tape to attach the bags to the bucket to prevent slippage
Emergency Stoves I Recommend:
Here’s the deal with an emergency stove, you have a lot of options. I would suggest a butane stove, and you may want to start with: Camp Chef Butane 1 Burner Stove with Camping Case and some fuel: 12 Butane Fuel GasOne Canisters for Portable Camping Stoves
This is just one stove I recommend. I will talk tomorrow about other choices of cooking devices I have used. May God bless you for being self-reliant. The government will not be able to take care of everyone. We are responsible for ourselves and our family.