It finally happened to us up here in the mountains: an extended power outage. We knew it was possible when we moved here, yet we’ve been truly blessed that it didn’t happen our first two winters.
Living at the end of a road, one way in and one way out has its advantages, but also its disadvantages. It’s definitely peaceful & quiet most of the time which makes it very relaxing. We can see who’s coming and going and the noise of the city, just 30 minutes or so away, doesn’t reach up this far. We are close enough to civilization, yet just far enough away to make it feel like you are “nowhere.”
The pitfall, though, is if those old trees along the road get weak or burdened by weather, and they come down. We may just find ourselves stuck for a while until they get to clearing the road and stringing the power lines again! THAT is exactly what happened in the ice storm November 2018.
We lost power for almost 4 full days. It was bitter cold outside, too. Snow and ice added to the drama of fallen trees and downed power lines. We decided we would just hunker down, stay warm, read books, and keep the fire going in the fireplace.
We made a bed in the living room, found all the flashlights we could, put on warm clothes, and hunkered down. We thought it was only going to be for a day. No problem. Then we got the automated message saying it was going to be out for several days.
We had just stocked the freezer and fridge with goodies for the upcoming holidays! What to do, what to do. . . we couldn’t get out to buy ice because of downed trees and power lines, and we didn’t want to lose all our foods. Jim came up with the brilliant idea: Since we couldn’t go GET ice at the store, why not use the ice God gave us!
So outside we went with hatchets, pots and pans, and dressed toasty warm.
We chiseled ice off everything we could – any ice source that would break off easily ended up in every large canning and soup pot we own. We took those and stuffed them into the freezers and refrigerator. Things like dairy – milk, cheeses, and cream cheese – I placed into a large pot and surrounded those with ice. Other products, we just put on the shelves accordingly – items that needed more refrigeration were closer to the pot of ice, those like vegetables and fruits, were further away.
We also put two large pots of ice on the top shelf of the upright freezer. We figured that the turkey and whole chicken in the bottom would keep that section cold, and the ice pots in the top, would keep the top cold. When it was all over and done, we were surprised to open the freezer to discover that ALL the meat was still frozen solid. It was SO cold in there that even a small ¾ lb pack of ground we stuck in there hoping to just keeping it from spoiling – had frozen solid! All we lost was a small package or three of frozen herbs, and two bags of frozen vegetables that had thawed completely.
When all the neighbors started checking on each other, we were surprised to learn that so many of them had lost the foods in the fridges and freezers by day two. Jim asked them, “Why didn’t you put the foods outside or even grab ice and bring it inside in containers?” He then explained what we had done.
We kept hearing over and over again, “Why didn’t I think of that?!” Honestly, I felt a little guilty at first that we hadn’t thought to text everyone and let them in on our little freezer secret. Yet, Jim said, he kind of thought folks would have known to do something like that. It seemed like both common sense and something they would have been used to doing, since folks up here have lived up here for so long. He thought they would know how to be prepared.
We consider ourselves more like city-folk, yet we seemed more prepared than a lot of people we ran into after that storm. Even folks we talked to at the store after the outage. We mentioned what we did to keep our foods safe, and everyone acted shocked and surprised.
I will say that I can’t be too taken aback by all their surprise. A few weeks later someone mentioned to me that we should have bottles of water – gallons work well – inside our upright freezer. Apparently, when your freezer is a bit low on foods, you fill the empty space with water bottles, and the frozen water will help the unit run more efficiently.
I have always known that a full freezer operates better. I just never thought to actually fill the empty spaces with water bottles! This will protect the foods should we have another outage, AND provide a form of water storage, too. So, what goes around comes around, there I was saying out loud, “Now why didn’t I think of that?!”
So what else did we learn from our ice storm experience? We can make it through, for one – even several days without power can be dealt with. You do it the old fashioned way: read BOOKS! But we also learned, I can make coffee and tea in the corner of the fireplace if I have to, we need more fire wood, and we need to check on our neighbors sooner!
We need to reteach ourselves to think, evaluate the circumstances, and act!!!
Spinach, kale, escarole, collard greens, they are all the same. I buy them either fresh by the pound or in a fresh prepackaged bag, stick them in the refrigerator with every intention of using them in salads, sautees or soups. Then I either forget they are there, or cook other ideas through the week, and there they sit. If I let it sit too long, it ends up getting squishy and slimy and crossing that line into the “unknown veggie” zone - that deep, dark, green, liquefied state. I have, over the years, thrown away way too much food like that but I keep hearing my grampa’s words in the back of my head, ‘Waste not, want not.”
Is there something we can do to save that bag of greens BEFORE it crosses that line into slime? OF COURSE! Click here and read more. . . .
I am a big proponent of non-GMO products for our food storage. With all the “unusual” modifications happening in our food supply these days, and our personal Biblical beliefs, we do not believe that mankind should be playing around with the genes of what God created as food for human consumption. We also eat a biblical diet, which means we follow the guidelines from Leviticus 11 as to what is and is NOT food, according to God. Major corporations are more and more often mixing animal genes, bug genes, and such into the plant genetic make-up and playing with things God never intended us to play with. This violates our beliefs on so very many levels.
These strange mixes and matches make us read every single label on food products every time we go shopping. We are grateful for those companies who are still labeling their manufactured foods as non-GMO, and we will be making sure to purchase those products first and foremost over those of other companies.
Recently on a jaunt to the local dollar store to pick up a few things, I read the labels on a few items we had not purchased there before. I was just curious what I would find. I was shocked to learn that the dollar store brand pasta products are currently labeled non-GMO. I also checked several of their brand of tomato products, and there are many of those as well that are also non-GMO and all natural. They are made of natural ingredients, not organic, but at least closer to organic than some products we see on shelves at all the other stores around us. I was so excited to see that we could now pick up decent quality products for minimal pricing, MADE IN THE USA, not imported from China, and they are made with non-GMO ingredients.
This was a boon for our pantry AND for our budget! For the same price as two packages of our former national brand of “safe” pasta I can purchase FIVE BOXES of the dollar store brand that is equal or better quality!
Now, I know that someone will ask for me to reveal the name of the dollar store where I shopped, but I have to say no, I will not tag the store in this article. You see, when I called about the ingredients of ANOTHER product in their brand, I was told that there are many products that vary from location to location depending on the closest manufacturer used for certain products. Because of this, I could tell you, their pastas are 100% non-GMO and natural, and you could go shopping and find a completely different product on YOUR dollar store shelf.
What, then, IS the purpose of this article if it is not to give a promo or review of a particular store or product? The purpose is to teach you skills that YOU need to develop so that you will be able to fine tune for your own family’s needs and storage purposes. We hope to help you learn to find the products you need, inexpensively, no matter where you live or shop. So make it a habit now to read your own labels. Take the time the next time you are in your dollar store, and check products you normally buy from national brands. See what you, too, can find to add to your pantry.
Another reason why I AM sharing this information is to show you how inexpensively you might be able to start stocking up for emergencies. Imagine being able to buy twice as much for your pantry and not having to make it always from scratch! I love fresh pasta, but some days I am just not in the mood to mix it up and make it. Having dried pastas in our pantry makes life easier on those days. Plus, our local store had non-GMO pastas in styles that I don’t know how to make from scratch. They carry fancier pasta like penne, bow ties, AND even elbow macaroni!
Taking a few extra minutes each trip to read the labels of products you normally buy at your major chain store may end up revealing to you, as it did to me, that there are great products cheaper right around the corner.
I hope that you find the same haul at your local store as I found at ours!
In the past two years there have been several incidences where water resources have been destroyed or damaged, forcing people to figure out in a pinch what to do for a basic need.
From mines leaking contamination into rivers and drinking water, radioactive waste being discovered in aquifers, and manufacturing contaminants sneaking past inspections our water supply is in severe danger. Reports have come out about artificial sweeteners discovered in the Great Lakes and even prescription medications found in ground water. By now, it seems everyone has heard of the problems in Michigan with lead in drinking water. These are just a few of the problems plaguing our nations water supply.
Recently I have seen 8 different “boil water” warnings come across news feeds from different cities in different states, all within 10 days. These are sudden events that cropped up without warning where people were told there was a water emergency requiring them to boil their water until further notice.
Are you prepared? Are WE prepared?? These events have caused me to take a more serious look at what we have on hand because, let’s face it, one thing we can not live without is water.
What does a family need to have available? If at all possible, you need to have both potable (drinkable) water, and non-potable (non-drinkable) water. Do you have space for a couple of barrels of water for flushing toilets or washing yourselves? This would be your non-potable water, and can be pulled from the barrels with a hand pump or siphon. It can also be used for washing up dishes or clothes if you need to.
For drinking and cooking water, it makes good sense to store at least some bottled water. Smaller bottles and gallon sizes so that you can have take-with bottles and cooking sizes. Another handy piece of equipment to have on hand is a water filter. If you can collect rain water, snow, or even ground water of some kind, a good quality filter system will help clean this water up so that you can have a more unlimited resource for potable water. Start studying now how to purify water in an emergency - homemade filters, using clear water bottles and the hot sun, or just plain boiling. Read the pros and cons on all these methods and store the equipment needed to make the methods easier to accomplish if you find yourself in a critical situation.
It is also very important to remember that you will need extra water storage when you are using freeze dried foods. Don’t forget to allot for this so you aren’t caught short in an emergency.
Be prepared so that anxiety and worry don’t over take you.
HOW MUCH WATER SHOULD I STORE
The standard for water storage for one average person is 1 gallon per day for three days.
There are variables to take into consideration such as health, physical activity, diet, climate, and individual needs. This one gallon standard takes into consideration 1/2 gallon for sanitation (brushing teeth, washing face, etc) and 1/2 gallon for drinking. Add additional water for cooking needs.
Certain people will also require additional water such as nursing mothers, children, elderly, sick, or those working outdoors. Storing additional water for medical emergencies would be wise as well.
Please also remember that using freeze dried foods will require you to have additional water on hand as well. A good standard would be an extra 1/2 gallon per person per day for rehydration of foods.
So often we hear people accuse those who put up food of being fear mongers or conspiracy theorists. What we often see, though, is those same accusers will be in need at some point in the future and will be left completely unprepared to provide for themselves and family. Food storage and knowing how to use it isn’t just about preparing for “end times” or “Armageddon”. Putting up food, gardening, saving water, having extra clothing on hand, and money set aside has been done for hundreds of years.
Think about it for a few minutes: When people used to dig a well, did they only dig deep enough to provide water for right now, this week or month? No, of course not. They dug it deep enough to provide a goodly amount of water for a long period of time. What about canning vegetables and fruits or dried foods? Take a few minutes to go back to ancient times and archaeological finds and you will see that people have put up foods for thousands of years. WHY? For what reasons?
It’s actually pretty simple - to avoid being caught in a panic without basic needs. We have gotten so used to just relying on the grocery store at the corner and believing it will always be there. But it won’t. Don’t believe me? Just do a quick search on what happens when a storm is predicted for any area in the US. PANIC. The store shelves are stripped in as few hours as possible. No milk, no eggs, cereal flying off the shelves, bread - gone. All the “staples” people are used to relying on disappear. This is not fear mongering, it is the truth. It happens every snow storm, every hurricane. Even comedians are now making fun of people who run out and panic shop.
What if you were prepared enough, had enough set aside to take care of yourself and your family for a month? Three months? A year? Would you need to run out to grab all of those items when storms are threatening? What about unemployment? That is a storm noone seems to think about. Suddenly, you have to live on less money than you have had to live on for years, but if you had items stored for at least a few months, you would be able to get through much easier.
So you see, it isn’t fear mongering, it isn’t Armageddon, it isn’t conspiracy theory - it is a life ENsurance. You buy life INsurance to cover expenses should you die unexpectedly, just think of home storage of food, personal items, toiletries, and such as life ENsurance. You want to ensure that your family doesn’t suffer unnecessarily through trials and challenges that life throws at you.
You will probably be shocked by this latest USA Today article that lists the top cities and locations for the risk of multiple natural disasters. Some of the locations may have never crossed your mind as a risk for earthquakes or tornadoes. Keep in mind that a much broader area surrounding these locations are also subject to the same disasters. Something to consider for preparation planning and relocation options.
Everyone has a sense that something is wrong with the economy. Even with the so called experts trying to convince us that there is nothing to worry about, we can see something is on the horizon around the world and what we see appears to be a global economic storm. Are you ready for a coming collapse? Are you prepared should the U.S. Dollar become worthless? We have found an article that will make you think and we included a link to the article below. Click the button below and return back to EmergencyFoodSupply.org to find the items you need.
A new report predicts that an overdue mega-earthquake could kill thousands in the Pacific Northwest, cause billions of dollars of destruction and a massive impact on infrastructure. Check out the full report and make sure you're prepared for this or similar disasters.
Click the button below for more information.
EmergencyFoodSupply.org is gearing up to help faith communities prepare. It's our belief that being prepared and building a storehouse of provisions is a biblically supported concept. We look forward to working with churches to make this happen.
Jim has decades of experience with service in the U.S. military, in the Intelligence field, as a commander in USAF-AUX overseeing air and land search & rescue teams and Emergency Services operations, he also had substantial FEMA training, and organized a CERT team. Most of all Jim has been trained and served in various ministry positions to include serving as a hospital chaplain.
DISCLOSURE: Were a business and may be paid or given free samples of products and services and therefore any information or article contained on this site should not be considered unbiased. Also, these articles may reflect our personal opinions and are provided as news and information only and should never be a substitute for professional, legal , medical or financial. consultation and advice. Conduct your own due diligence and verify the accuracy of each article.
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