Emergency Essentials

I went to see “Contagion” this weekend with my good pal Louisa. I’m not going to write a review of the film, but I can tell you just thinking about it makes we want to stop touching this keyboard, hose down with germ cleaner and go put on a surgical mask. It’s a VERY intense film that leaves you not wanting to hug anyone for at least a week. It’s a good movie, but definitely not for date night.

One of the storylines in the movie got me thinking about what my family would do in case of an emergency. Growing up in the Midwest you needed to be prepared for tornadoes. Now we live in California so we have earthquakes, fires, mudslides and the looming fear of terrorist attacks from biological weapons (thank you fear based TV). Pick your region it doesn’t matter, there is some sort of disaster you should be prepared for.

This topic is one that my sister Joquena and I discuss a few times a year. We both get each other riled up and spend way too much time and money planning for the possible inevitable (that thankfully hasn’t come yet). I’m not going to focus on the “Armageddon scenario”, but rather the “what-you-should-have-in-case-there-is-a-natural-disaster” scenario.  I mean heaven forbid the power goes out and you don’t have any internet.

I have a “go bag” in our house in case of emergency.  The bag contains enough for five people to last three days. It’s a pretty decent size tote bag. I don’t plan on being the one to carry it in case of Armageddon.

What’s In The Bag:

  • Water Purification Tablets
  • Light Sticks
  • Hand Crank Flashlight with AM/FM Radio & Siren
  • 36 Hour Candles & 100 Hour Candles
  • Waterproof Matches
  • Emergency Tents
  • Emergency Thermal Blankets
  • 5 Gallon Collapsible Water Carrier
  • First Aid Kit with Pain Medicine for Adults & Children
  • Respirator Masks for Adult’s & Children
  • Lightload Towels
  • Whistle with Compass & Thermometer
  • Tinder-Quik (to start a fire)
  • Emergency Fire Starter
  • Work Gloves
  • Wetnaps
  • Duct Tape
  • Toilet Paper
  • Garbage Bags
  • Deck of Cards
  • Hard Candy
  • Potassium Iodide Pills

What Should Also Be In The Bag (that I still need to add):

  • MRE’s
  • Money
  • Swiss Army Knife
  • Cell Phone Charger (solar)
  • Camper’s Stove
  • Ponchos
  • Sunblock
  • Chapstick
  • Hats
  • Socks
  • Sunglasses
  • Personal Hygiene Items – Soap, Toothbrush, Lotion, etc.
  • Cheesecloth (to strain purified water)
  • Copies of Social Security Cards & Birth Certificates & Important Documents
  • Bible

Typing the list overwhelms me and makes me think “or we could just starve to death.” It would be easier, but we’re moms and we didn’t choose the easy path. If there were a real emergency I want to be able to provide the most adequate care for my family I can.

Don’t wait for an actual disaster to have emergency essentials. Let’s “Be Prepared” like the Boy Scouts say. I’m going to commit to gathering my final items. If anyone has any items they think I should add to my list let me know. And if you want to be freaked out about the possibility of your town being quarantined due to an out of control disease that’s killing everyone in its path, see “Contagion.”

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3 Comments on “Emergency Essentials

  1. I do my “Go Bags” a little differently than my sister. I have a separate backpack for every person to carry. The kids packs are very small and even have the handle with wheels. Everyone’s backpack has hiking or work boots and a couple pairs of socks. I also need to finish stocking mine but I wanted to make sure everyone had a bag in case we got separated. I couldn’t afford a lot of the stuff I wanted to do so I got creative. I bought heavy duty garbage bags and put 1+ in every bag. If you are stranded and need a sleeping bag you can shove it with crumpled newspaper and such and that should keep you from freezing. I found tiny packages of those full sized towels at the $ Tree of all places! The $ stores are a great place to start with first aid kits, ponchos, and more. Don’t be overwhelmed if you don’t have the money to buy everything at once, just start getting SOME of the stuff!

  2. Hmm. I guess I’m not so organized as my daughters. I am pretty impressed though. I figure they’ll all come to Mom’s house in case of a disaster, so I just try to stock up lots of food, in case I have “family refugees” for this disaster which hopefully never comes. I do have flash lights, blankets, water and snack bar type foods so I’m a little ready in-case of a tornado.

    • You also have more land than any of us. We still need to buy you survival sealed seeds though!

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