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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Emergency Food/Supplies / Now what...?
    Lost? Site Map

    Now what...?

    UnknownChef86
    Sun Nov 04, 2012 4:16 pm
    Forum Host
    Watching the long-term aftermath of Sandy, from the relative safety of the other side of the US, makes me wonder a few things...

    What did I learn from this?
    Am I truly prepared for a long-term emergency?
    What is missing from my emergency supplies?
    How would my house and family fair if we lost power for weeks at a time?
    Would we have food...water...heat...power...communication...if something like that happened here?
    Do I have cash on hand in case ATMs and banks aren't functional?
    Is my gas tank topped off, or am I running on empty?
    Would I have a supply of necessary medications to last that long?
    If I had to pack up and evacuate, immediately, would I be an asset or a liability?

    There are too many questions to which I don't like the answers.
    How about you? Are you prepared for an emergency? If not, what else do you need to do to get there?
    UnknownChef86
    Sun Nov 04, 2012 4:35 pm
    Forum Host
    To answer my own questions...

    What did I learn from this?
    That I am woefully unprepared.

    Am I truly prepared for a long-term emergency?
    No. I have camping stuff, and food that can be heated, but not enough for a long-term emergency. We'd be eating a lot of rice and carbs, and the stuff in my freezer would go bad. I can't even find my flashlights during a non-emergency...why would I suddenly be able to find them during an emergency???

    What is missing from my emergency supplies?
    A lot.

    How would my house and family fair if we lost power for weeks at a time?
    Not well.

    Would we have food...water...heat...power...communication...if something like that happened here?
    Some...but not enough.

    Do I have cash on hand in case ATMs and banks aren't functional?
    No.

    Is my gas tank topped off, or am I running on empty?
    My tank is usually full or close to it...hubby's is usually empty.

    Would I have a supply of necessary medications to last that long?
    Depends on how long it lasted. Normally I do...but right now I don't.

    If I had to pack up and evacuate, immediately, would I be an asset or a liability?
    At this point...I'd be a liability. I need to change that.
    threeovens
    Sun Nov 04, 2012 10:51 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    No need to panic UC. We had several days notice of Sandy and could prepare a little bit. We always order our medications waaay in advance. Flashlight and batteries are always on hand. We also keep candles and matches (actually DH laughed at me when I bought those 3 boxes of stick matches, heh heh heh).

    So before the storm, we designated a spot right on the dining room table (its the room we walk into from the front door) to store those emergency supplies so we could find them in the dark.

    Our neighbors are sharing a generator. One gets it for 24 hours, then the other uses it for the next 24. This way they don't lose any food. Aren't they smart?

    To be better prepared, I may get a generator, but more important I want a small wood burning stove. They are cute and rustic looking and they would provide light and warmth. We are quite cold. And having dim lights is depressing. Of course, the generator has become secondary because we have gas cooking and gas hot water heater, so the warmth is lacking.
    UnknownChef86
    Mon Nov 05, 2012 1:15 am
    Forum Host
    threeovens wrote:
    No need to panic UC. We had several days notice of Sandy and could prepare a little bit. We always order our medications waaay in advance. Flashlight and batteries are always on hand. We also keep candles and matches (actually DH laughed at me when I bought those 3 boxes of stick matches, heh heh heh).

    So before the storm, we designated a spot right on the dining room table (its the room we walk into from the front door) to store those emergency supplies so we could find them in the dark.

    Our neighbors are sharing a generator. One gets it for 24 hours, then the other uses it for the next 24. This way they don't lose any food. Aren't they smart?

    To be better prepared, I may get a generator, but more important I want a small wood burning stove. They are cute and rustic looking and they would provide light and warmth. We are quite cold. And having dim lights is depressing. Of course, the generator has become secondary because we have gas cooking and gas hot water heater, so the warmth is lacking.

    I'm not panicking...actually quite the opposite. It's more of a methodical, rather purposeful "I need to prepare for the unexpected" mindset. I live in an area that, in a long-term emergency, would likely be pretty much cut off from outside assistance...so being prepared isn't a bad idea.

    I truly miss having a woodstove. We had them for about 8 years in various rentals we lived in...and were able to heat and cook even when storms came up and the power went out. Unfortunately we've not had one since we moved into our own house...and I can't tell you how many times I've wished we had one.

    Your neighbors are smart re. the generator. That's another purchase I'd like to make...
    Mimi in Maine
    Tue Nov 06, 2012 2:07 pm
    Food.com Groupie
    Thanks for this thread, it has made me rethink all the stuff I do and don't do.

    We were in the ice storm in Maine several years ago and lost our power for over 12 days. That is a long time.

    We have a generator which we used to keep the freezer, refrigerator, and furnace on. Also, a room where we could plug in, like the TV (smile). As long as we had gas, all was well. We turned it off at night to save on gas, but if you couldn't get gas, that would be a problem. We did have plenty of those red gas containers though.

    I have all the stuff for emergency supplies, I think. Right now, I am supplied with most of them if we ever have something like "Sandy" (those poor people).

    My family would fare fairly well, I think, as my pantry is stocked and freezer if stocked somewhat....pantry better than freezer. I have plenty of bottled water. I have enough in the pantry that we could probably feed our two kids and their families for a short while and then we would just have to share as best we could. During Y2K, we had enough food to feed the whole family and then to feed several in the neighborhood if need be.

    Ready cash is not as much as I would like but am working on that. I am going to actively work on it because you never know.

    As far as gas in my car goes, I never let it get below half-full; hubby either. I think now I will fill it at three-quarters full.

    We have as many meds as the insurance will allow us to get within a time period. I have inhalers and nebulizer stuff for my breathing if needed.

    If we had to evacuate, I would probably be a liability as I can't walk very far without getting out of breath. But we don't live on the coast; we live in a rural neighborhood. I don't know where we would go except out back into the woods (smile).

    Ever since Y2K, I have wanted to build some sort of an outhouse in the back. We have a shed and could build a two-seater (smile) out there with lyme to use on it. Sort of strange desire but we all have to use it from time-to-time. I even have a huge storage of toilet paper, but save your Sears Catalogues in case of an emergency. I don't know if it is against the law or not to have an out house. I don't think so as so many in Maine do still have them. I don't know if they use them or not but they are there if need-be.

    I have also wanted a root cellar and you can build one in your garage with hay bales and sand and two-by-fours. Then cover it. The garage root cellar and outhouse plans I got off the internet.

    It is wise to be prepared even if people that know what you are doing laugh at you.
    Molly53
    Tue Nov 06, 2012 4:35 pm
    Forum Host
    I think an outhouse in the country is an eminently sensible suggestion, Mimi.
    Not sure how it would work for town-dwellers, though.

    Check out these topics from Canning/Preserving/Dehydrating that might apply here:
    Root Cellaring
    Foraged Foods ~ Foods From The Wild
    Meals In A Jar ~ Make Your Own Convenience Foods
    Cooking From The Pantry
    All comments and suggestions very welcome! icon_smile.gif

    Just a thought on your ice storm story....seems to me you wouldn't need to plug in freezers, friges in very cold weather, you could just leave the food in an unheated area or outside. Or am I wrong? That way you could allocate available energy to other uses.
    UnknownChef86
    Tue Nov 13, 2012 12:58 am
    Forum Host
    Mimi in Maine wrote:
    It is wise to be prepared even if people that know what you are doing laugh at you.

    Everybody laughed at Noah til it started raining... icon_wink.gif

    My thought is that even if you never need it...rather safe than sorry. And don't forget to buy what your family will actually eat. Having 25 pound bags of beans and rice is great...if your family eats beans and rice. If they don't...you could be in for a long haul. Better to suss out what is needed and will be used in an emergency...before the emergency.

    Re. the outhouse...that is a great idea...if your zoning code allows it. I live in town, and I'm sure the city folks might not be too happy with me if I did that. Not to mention my neighbors... icon_biggrin.gif icon_wink.gif
    Mimi in Maine
    Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:39 am
    Food.com Groupie
    I always felt sorry for Noah and his family, especially his wife. We all feel badly if our husbands are made fun of. She really had to bite her tongue. No one was laughing when the flood came.

    I think where we live, we could put one in the shed as it sits a ways back. I think it is a gread idea. Also, I don't think that the neighbors would notice if you kept it limed-up, etc. Lime does a good job.

    When I prepared for Y2K way back in 2000 (remember that one), I only bought what we ate and not just stored up stuff for the sake of storing. I remember buying salt like it was going out-of-style because I thought that we might need it for medicinal purposes and cleansing. Because salt does not spoil, we just finished it a couple years ago---that was a lot of salt, but you never know. icon_biggrin.gif

    I just finished cleaning and sorting out three shelves of our pantry. I check the dates and we eat what needs to be eaten if the date is near expiration. In fact we are eating one tonight as the expiration is Dec. 2012. I found that the Members Mark canned chicken from Sam's Club has a long expiration date so that is a good one to store. It really makes good sandwiches. We eat a lot of tuna fish and that has a fairly long life. Just remember to rotate your shelves so the ones in the back are current.

    I have a yogurt maker and a seed sprouter which is good for that sort of thing as long as you keep the water clean and bacteria does not grow. My hubby is a microbiologist at the state lab and they got notification several years ago NOT to buy sprouts in the store because of the baterica, but home-grown sprouts as fine as long as you tend them which I would do.
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