January 29, 2016

February Emergency Preparedness Goals - Breakfast Foods and Emergency Communications

My preparedness focus for February is breakfast foods and emergency communications. It starts this Sunday. Using a monthly focus helps me stay organized and prevents becoming overwhelmed with the whole preparedness thing. The great thing about breakfast foods for food storage is they are affordable and you can eat them any time of the day in an emergency.

Go here to print my February Emergency Preparedness List.pdf

My goal is to gather a 3-month food storage supply of shelf-stable everyday breakfast foods my family will eat. Even though I suggest specific items on my list to gather, adapt the list. Your family might eat cold breakfast cereal, whereas another family might want agave nectar and gluten-free buckwheat. Both families would be correct. So, adapt my food storage goals for you.


This month I'll gather breakfast cereal, oats, pancake mix, syrup and maybe some powdered eggs. I may throw in some extra boxes of food bars my husband likes too.

I usually check the Costco ad to see if there is something on my prep list on sale. This month my toiletries focus is toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss, and mouthwash. Costco has the mouthwash my husband uses. Check! My other items are not on sale there, so I'll be going to another store for them. I'm surprised, Costo, since it's National Children's Dental Health month. Em and I are headed to the dentist in February for our checkups.

Costco

Oh. Heads up. Even though I don't need them, you might want to know that Costco has their fire extinguishers, fire alarms and carbon monoxide alarms on sale. And the 9V batteries for the smoke alarms are on sale as well. Thanks, Costco.

On Step 1: 3-month food storage supply of my list, you'll see oatmeal listed as 5 lbs. or 2 LDS #10 cans. You don't have to buy your 3-month supply of oatmeal in #10 cans. Nada. It's perfectly fine to store items for your 3-month supply in the boxed container from the store like the one pictured.
Quaker Oats

I buy my oats from the LDS Home Storage Center, and then dump them in a plastic container for baking. Boy, would I like some oatmeal cookies right about now. Oh, yes. Back to writing.

Don't get hung up on all the numbers on the list. It took a lot of research for me to figure out what works for my family. You may want to store more or less depending on how much you cook oats. Let's move on.

Be on the lookout for some great breakfast cereal deals at the store this month. I actually picked up some General Mills cereals on sale Saturday. Not too many. Just six. My youngest does not like breakfast cereal. Yes, I know. She is unique. But my other children and grandchildren do like cereal. So, if they visit me, or if there is a disaster like a power outage or earthquake, I have something they can eat.

I love granola and Special K. So, I have a variety of things always in my cupboard. Look for some store sales around President's Day weekend here in the U.S. too.

Oats are amazing to store in your long-term food storage. They can be stored short-term in those Quaker Oats-type containers for something like 2 years, or long-term in #10 cans or buckets for about 30 years. But remember. Gathering food that lasts long-term is your Step #4. So work on that 3-month supply first.

There are several types of oats, but most people buy regular, quick or instant oats. They are definitely economical. To understand the differences, check out this great article at Baking Bites: Regular vs. Quick Cooking Oatmeal.

Let's talk about emergency communication. How will you communicate with your family during an emergency? Do you have some equipment to do that? What's your plan? Have you practiced it? Who is your out-of-state contact? Can you text them? Will they expect you too? What's your plan for Grandpa who lives 20 minutes away? Think it through.

I've got to work on that too, since phone numbers and addresses keep changing in our family. We always think we are safe if our contacts are in our cell phone, but imagine if you accidentally dropped your phone in water after a disaster. Do you remember the phone number of your daughter who lives in San Jose? Perhaps it would be wise to keep a card in your wallet with numbers on it too.

FEMA has a sample you can use, or create one of your own.

Family Emergency Communication Plan
Family Emergency Communication Plan Wallet Cards

Good luck on your goals this month. I think you CAN, I think you CAN one can or box or goal at a time.
Amazon
The Little Engine That Could


Best wishes
Valerie

BE DOERS
"And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: 
I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, 
for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, 
save he shall prepare a way for them 
that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them." 

January 23, 2016

College Food Storage or Food Storage for Singles

Since I have college students, I thought I would do a quick post on college emergency kits and food storage. Yes, it is possible. No one expects you to have a year's supply of food since you are living in temporary housing with limited storage. But even so, there are some things you can do to be better prepared for emergencies. It's never too early to start gathering food storage.






I've created a simple Food Storage for College Students spreadsheet to give you some ideas and what you can gather.  It's important to be self-reliant. You never know when an emergency might happen such as job loss, a power outage. or a disaster. The list is great for singles not in college as well!

You'll probably want to have a 72-Hour Kit, and an auto emergency kit (if you have a car). Parents can help with these items at the beginning of the school year, or ask for them for Christmas since they can be pricey.






Now let's talk about how to create a food storage supply. It's easy!

  • Look over the list and decide what you want to store.
  • Change items based on your preferences. 
  • Stock up on non-perishables at the beginning of each school year, or semester.
  • Talk to your roommates about sharing staple food. (rice, flour, sugar, and spaghetti, etc.)
  • Store what you have room for. 
  • Store food under your bed.
  • Don't forget some emergency water. Can you fit a case of bottled water under your bed?
  • Ask Mom for canned food you can bring to school.
  • Store what you eat, eat what you store. 
  • Yes, you eat your food.
  • Buy some more when you need it.
  • The goal is to stock up, eat, and stock some more.
Good luck becoming better prepared!

Valerie

Food Storage for College Students pdf
Food Storage for College Students xlxs

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