I’ve only recently (in the last 9 months) really become serious about preparing my household for an emergency. In this short amount of time, I have truly realized just how unprepared we have been! Aside from keeping a halfway decent pantry, candles, and extra blankets in my home, and the “winter emergency kit” in my car when I still lived in the Great Lakes Region, I have really never given any other type of disaster a thought to prepare for. Items like access to fresh water, a heat source for living and cooking, and medications ( OTC, natural, and prescription) for all the members of my household are things that have irresponsibly fallen to the wayside. Anything can happen…natural disasters, utility shutdowns/breakdowns, or even a SHTF (s**t hits the fan) scenario can literally throw your family into a life or death situation. There are a million places on the internet to find information on how to prepare, but the hard part is deciphering which information will best suit you and yours. My family has focused on the basics (food, clothing, and shelter), and we have focused on these on the assumption that NO modern conveniences will be available. We live in a rural area, 15 miles from the nearest town, and if anything were to happen without notice, we would not be able to run for that infamous “emergency gallon of milk”. Besides that, it has been proven that grocery stores would be wiped out in a matter of days should any disaster occur. What are we doing to make sure that we are prepared? My household is going to set a weekend aside this February (Friday night to Sunday evening) in which we will shut down all our modern conveniences in our home. That’s right…no power (which means no use of the electric baseboard heat in our home), no running water (we are on a city system, but what if that were tainted and we had no way of knowing). If your home is on a well and the power goes out; your pump stops, and you won’t have any water either. We will keep the refrigerator and freezer going as to not waste the food we have, but we will not be allowed to use anything from it. We will have to rely on what we have in the pantry, and maybe a few perishable items that we throw in a cooler with one bag of ice. Since everything in our home runs on electricity, there will be no stove to cook with either. We will basically be forced to “camp” from our home.
At this end of this “dress rehearsal” we will be able to take stock in what happened, where we excelled, and where we were lacking. Albeit a small test, it’s like sticking your big toe in to test the water before you plunge in head first. We are going to try this during every season, when its weather is harshest, to help us prepare for “Come What May”; should it happen!
Let me know if you’ve done this or have plans to….maybe we can share our experiences and learn a little bit more from ourselves…and each other! 🙂