Sunday, June 14, 2015

Hurricane Prep 2015

It's been 10 years since we've been hit with a hurricane, and that one was Wilma in October of 2005. I still prepare, though, because it only takes one to turn your life upside down! So far this year I've been updating some of my food storage. DH and I invested retirement money in a second house a couple of hours away so I've stocked our storage room there with emergency food supplies. (We rent it out seasonally but we keep one room locked where we can keep personal items.) I inventoried what I have, removing things that are either expired or close to expiration, and made a list of everything that's up there. I keep a 10 meal box there as well as one at home with everything I need to make five recipes twice each, as well as other supplies like boxed macaroni and cheese, jars of pasta sauce, pasta, rice, oatmeal packets, seasonings, oil, and so forth. I listed every single item from cans of beans to a can of peanuts and their expiration dates, along with a list of items I'm now missing since I cleaned up my inventory. I spent extra time going through the 10 meal box; I need a bunch of items for that. From my lists, I now have a shopping list that I can take to the grocery with me, buying a little at a time until everything is up to date with fresh stock, then I'll take it back to the house the next time I'm able to get up there.

I feel very organized now! Everything is sorted and neatly packed away, the 10 meal box is ready to pull out and use, and anything bugs could get into is stored in air tight containers. Now I have to do the same thing at home!

Other things on my prep list to do at home:
~ go through the bug out bags, especially since the kids are older; I'll need to trade out the clothing and entertainment items
~ call the tree trimmer!! I used to get the trees trimmed yearly but I've neglected them for a couple of years now
~ update my food inventory at home, which is a job with multiple parts:
*go through the 10 meal box and rotate the stock
*go through the pantry, donate any items we haven't used, refresh the things we do use
*inventory the items in the freezer and make some meals to use up the frozen food; I don't want to loose a full freezer of food if we are without power for some time, so I try to keep it fairly empty during storm season (plus that way I have room for making more ice and freezing bread, which we can thaw out and use after a storm- you can't find bread in the stores when a hurricane is on the way!!)
~ catch up and keep up with laundry (if you are without power for some time it's nice to have clean clothes!)

Purging and Organizing:
This counts as emergency preparation because if you have less stuff, then there's less to deal with in the aftermath of a storm, plus you have the space you need to store prep items. I've cleaned out cabinets in our computer room but then I piled everything in boxes in my living room, which is a disaster. I was thinking about trying to sell some of it since there's so much (a lot of homeschooling/educational items, much of it not even used) but I'll never get around to it so I'm going to donate it all, most likely to a local non-profit after school program. Both of my daughters have given their rooms a good clean out so that's all piled in my living room too, and it's all going to go!! I can't wait. I actually am waiting right at the moment, however; The Eldest was planning on having a yard sale of some sort (we're not allowed to have them at our house due to city zoning) at a friend's house, or work, or on-line, to raise money for a volunteer trip she's going on, but it's not happening and she leaves in a week, so that's my deadline. Once she's gone, I'm loading up the car and getting that stuff OUT of my house!!! It will be so good to have my living room back to normal again.