Be Prepared for Emergencies

by Becky Elmuccio on May 14, 2013

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Welcome to the May 2013 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Emergency Preparedness

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have shared their plans to keep their families safe. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

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Disclosure: I was provided with a copy of Getting Prepared for review purposes. All opinions and total lack of preparedness are my own.

be prepared for emergencies

Would you consider your family as one that knows how to be prepared for emergencies?

After reading, The Untrained Housewife’s Guide to Getting Prepared: Surviving Emergencies Without Stress by Robin Egerton and Angela England, of The Untrained Housewife, I have decided that we are not very well prepared for an emergency. In fact, if Hurricane Sandy were to repeat itself this hurricane season, then we have a fair amount to check off our lists in order to be ready. Luckily, the appendices in this eBook have just such a set of lists for us to print and review. From setting up a cloth diaper supply to canning food to making sure you have the right shoes, Egerton and England have you covered.

Luckily, we were not hit too hard by Hurricane Sandy. However, we were not far from the destruction at the Jersey Shore and my in laws were without power for over a week in North Jersey. In light of this and other recent natural disasters, I think it may be best for us to review how to be prepared for emergencies on a number of levels. Egerton and England have written this book as an educational resource for families who want to make sure that they have the supplies and abilities to make it through a long term power outage or at the very least have a 72 hour bag.

At the most basic level, the authors urge everyone to review their home owner’s insurance, take pictures of their belongings and store that data in a safe place. Can you guess what just got added to my to do list? For the next step, it’s valuable to have a 72 hour bag ready and some sort of generator to help provide you with electricity and/or heat and air for some time after a disaster strikes.

On a higher level, the authors help you to learn canning skills, set up monthly meal plans, split wood and have various caches of clothes stored in case you can’t do laundry in the conventional sense. They really do walk you through how to be prepared for a lengthy disaster recovery time. I don’t know if we will reach that level of preparedness in the near future, but here are my six goals for the next few months in order to be prepared for emergencies.

1) Clean out the attic and basement of clutter so that we can get some shelving in place.

2) Buy a generator. Whether it be a gas or propane one, I think we’ve had enough serious storms to warrant one.

3) Learn how to can. Ever at the top of my gardening to do list. Maybe we can make it happen this year!

4) Set up a 72 hour bag for each of us.

5) Figure out our safe space in the house. Where can we meet that is away from windows and safe for us to ride out a major storm?

6) Get our chimney cleaned and secure some wood for fires.

One of my favorite ideas from the book is to do practice drills with the family. In all honesty, how nice would it be to turn your main breaker off for the weekend and see what you can accomplish at a simple, power free level? I like that Egerton and England’s book was accessible and didn’t talk above your head. For those of us who have never really done any prepping, it is a great book to read and set small goals. Plus, the appendices in the back have such great checklists and resources that it makes it all feel doable. Take a moment to check the book out and see how your family measures up to be prepared for emergencies.

What’s the most important thing that you need to do this month to be prepared for emergencies?

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Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

(This list will be updated by afternoon May 14 with all the carnival links.)

Also linkig up with: Schneider Peeps Monthly Non-Fiction Book Love

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Lauren @ Hobo Mama May 14, 2013 at 6:15 am

I clearly need that book! I am so unprepared for an emergency. You listed several things I hadn’t thought of (washing cloth diapers, for instance) and several things I keep meaning to figure out (canning!).
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Angela England May 15, 2013 at 2:14 pm

That was our primary focus of the book – keeping things understandable for beginners who WANT to get started with family preparation and don’t quite know where to start. The checklist is a great place to see where your family is lacking and what needs to be your top focus.

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Noelle (@singerinkitchen) May 14, 2013 at 7:37 am

Yes a generator seems so important! I like this list.
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Lindsay May 14, 2013 at 9:02 am

This seems like a handy resource to have! I think I can handle getting a 72-hour bag ready.
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Dionna @ Code Name: Mama May 14, 2013 at 9:03 am

I have done some minimal emergency planning, but most of it needs to be either updated or completed. I need something to keep me accountable, because it always gets shuffled to the bottom of my to do list! This book sounds like a good resource – I’ll look for it at the library!
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Denise @Couponing 4 a Difference May 14, 2013 at 10:07 am

Thanks for writing about this book. I’ve been looking for something like this as my husband and I are trying to plan. He found books that are good but take things to the extreme, like have a million tons of wheat in huge gallon drums. Where would I even put that?! This book seems to have more helpful, easy to achieve goals. You’ve done your job with this post because I am buying the book! Thanks!
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Kellie May 14, 2013 at 10:30 am

I’ll be checking my library for these books! Thanks for the recommendations. We’ve thought through a lot of these topics, but it will be great to have a resource list to look through as well.

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Nicole @ One Punky Mama May 14, 2013 at 11:32 am

Thank you for taking the time to compile that list! I keep saying I really need to “get around to” emergency planning, it’s just really overwhelming when you don’t know where to start.
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Victoria • Restoring our 1890 Victorian May 14, 2013 at 11:32 am

“All opinions and total lack of preparedness are my own.”… Laughing.

I am totally unprepared for any emergency, and should definitely consider at least some of these more basic tips!
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Lisa Nelson May 14, 2013 at 11:50 am

This is a fantastic list! Thanks so much for sharing! There is some really great stuff here.

You know, my church is always talking about preparations – and some members are really gung-ho about it. Like – really – gung-ho. I need to be like this as well. This list has some fantastic ideas!

One thing I do is get a gallon of water every time I go to the store. I forget how many gallons it is per person to sustain you for 3 days. I have to find that out. But having 30 or so gallons isn’t a bad idea. Specially when you talk about the storms we have been having.
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Gina Badalaty May 14, 2013 at 12:23 pm

Oh goodness! This is way overwhelming for me. It makes me think of a guy I used to work for, who’s wife asked him on an airplane, “What do we do in case of emergency.” Joe replied, “Put your head between your legs & kiss your rear goodbye!” That’s about how well prepared I am, lol :)
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Angela England May 15, 2013 at 5:10 pm

That is true of so many people! I think shows with extreme preppers just make it all even MORE overwhelming because it isn’t friendly for someone trying to get started. For the person going from nothing, to surviving a 2 day power outage there aren’t any practical first steps on shows like that. Lol! That’s where we were hoping to come in and fill that gap with Getting Prepared….to make it easy for people to dip their toes in and help their families be more safe and better prepared.

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Lauryn May 14, 2013 at 12:42 pm

This has been on my mind for a long time. I need to make this a priority on my to do list. I can, so we have a lot of preserved food. I would like to get all of our important information and numbers into one space.
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Carrie May 14, 2013 at 11:26 pm

After Sandy, I was gung-ho emergency prep. I’ve let it slip as the months went by though, and still have several important things left on my list. Thanks for the reminder that I need to get going before summer storm season!
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jana May 20, 2013 at 3:29 pm

I like the tip on taking photos of possessions (well, the important ones at least!) and storing them somewhere safe.

Now to add this to my to do list – walk around the house and take photos, then store them on dropbox in my ‘important files’ folder :)
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tessa July 25, 2013 at 2:56 pm

Thanks for the review! We shared it with our FB readers at homesteadlady.com.

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