|Image credit: Paul martin on Flickr|
Our pantry staples:
- Several cases of bottled water (enough to last our family of six and pets for several days)
- Several bags of chocolate chips (seriously, we do not want to endure stress without chocolate)
- Plenty of coffee (ditto)
- Several cans of sweetened condensed milk for the aforementioned coffee
- Toilet paper
- Trash bags
- Baking powder
- Lighters and matches, flashlights and batteries
- Any meds
- Beans and rice, because we like them
- Cocoa and tea
- Dish soap
- Canned goods that we actually like, mainly tomatoes
- Pet food
- Parmesan cheese
- precooked shelf stable bacon
- chicken broth
- Folex (a miracle worker for cleaning anything, especially if you can't do laundry for a few days)
- plain bleach
- ground beef
- frozen fruit
- butter (I have a Paula Deen streak, y'all, and I also stock up on pastured butter during the spring and summer and then stick it in the freezer so that I have it year round)
Although water is the biggie, I also want plenty of flavored beverages in case we need to boil water later on. In Haiti, we added a few drops of bleach to the water and boiled it to make it safe for drinking, then disguised the taste by making it into strong coffee with lovely Haitian vanilla. Tea or cocoa can be used if you aren't into coffee or just want a variety.
Since we have dealt with egg and dairy allergies in the past, I am not too worried about eggs and milk (and applesauce can make a good egg substitute for baking).
We also keep an extra can of propane for our grill in case we need to use it for cooking.
For any minor medical emergencies, having four kidlets means that we are pretty well stocked, but I try to make sure we have plenty of the basics: essential oils, bandaids, pain reliever, allergy meds, burn ointment, etc.
Make sure that all phones, etc, are fully charged, and there are even some neat solar chargers and other fun things if you are worried about being without electricity for a considerable period.
Books, of course.
Our little ones are now weaned, and out of diapers (praise Him!), but you would obviously want to have extra diapers in their sizes, wipes, and any other baby needs.
I have a diva cup and cloth pads. Although I am not a fan of the diva normally, I would totally go with it in this scenario.
The FEMA site has some helpful guidelines for building your own emergency kits here.
The good thing is that you don't have to stock up all at once. An extra case of toilet paper here, and few extra cans of tomatoes there, a $4 case of water this week, an extra bag of chocolate chips next week go a long way without breaking the budget.
As we cozy up with extra blankies, a movie and cookies, I am really glad that I won't have to fight anyone at the store or be around well-meaning but inept drivers on icy roads for the next few days.