My Treasure Box News

Filling Up Life's Treasure Box

*Part 4-Store Supplies

New idea. PART 4

We need to keep an emergency supply of the items listed below. These items should be stored in the car or some place with quick access, in case we end up stranded or we have to evacuate. One never knows what type of emergency we may face these days, so we should prepare for anything.

  • $500 cash in small denominations (you can start with $20 set aside)
  • ½ to ¾ full gas tank (also, keep up car maintenance)
  • Food and/or baby food for at least 3-5 days (that do not need to be cooked or heated)
  • Water for drinking and cleaning (at least a quart per person per day)
  • Clean clothing and blankets (for both warm and cold weather)
  • span style=”font-family: verdana; font-size: small;”>Batteries (AAA’s, AA’s, C’s, and D’s and other type of batteries you might need)
  • Pliers, wrench, screw driver, hammer, shovel, and ax or hatchet (perhaps hooks and nails)
  • Tape (such as gray plumbers tape and electrical tape)
  • Wire, rope, and an 8-ft. tarp (you can use as a shelter)
  • TV Radio (a hand-cranked and/or a battery powered one with appropriate batteries to last several days)
  • Flashlight, several (at least one that is hand cranked or shaken and enough batteries to go for several days)
  • Emergency medical kit, medication, prescription medication, safety pins, ointments and sprays
  • Emergency car kit with cables and flares, as well as radiator and tire fixes

A savings account and at least one complete month’s supply of food and water are a vital part of economic security and self-reliance. It possibly could be the most critical key to survival for a family during tough times or an emergency.

Having a good food storage program is one thing, but knowing how to best store it and use it might be a completely different matter. Keep in mind that a good storage program is only a wise investment if you store what you use and use what you store.

Store only food your family will eat on a regular basis, especially those that contain the most nutritional value and that can be rotated properly. For instance, I learned that when wheat and grain are stored in too hot or too cold temperatures, the nutritional value depletes rapidly. What this means, basically, is the family could eat food with little or no nutrients and end up being malnourished with full stomachs. This rule applies to almost all foods you store, so be responsible in the planning and handling of it.

A Personal Story About Being Prepared

An example of the need to store necessities occurred when we lived in the Sierra Foothills of California at an altitude of 2,800 feet.

During the winter, the usual snowstorms would come through and drop 1 to 6 inches of snow at a time. Then, in early February of 1990, a major storm dumped over three feet of snow in a three-day period. The majority of snow fell in the first 24 hours. As a result, at least two counties in the area were declared a disaster.

Trees and power lines went down everywhere, and it looked as if a bomb had detonated! Our family spent three weeks (others longer) without power and the normal necessities. Of course, this meant there was no electricity to run the TV, games, lights, wall heaters, or the water pump, nor the oven, stove, washer, dryer, and phones. Neither did we have the luxury of running water to cook hot meals, drink, clean, do laundry, and take baths or showers. For awhile, the road was washed out so we could not replenish supplies. Nevertheless, even if we had wanted to, we did not have a need to go out because we had adequately prepared for such a scenario.

This experience actually turned out to be a lot of fun for the family. We had already stored the needed supplies of food, water, kerosene, lanterns, wicks, and cut wood to survive the supposed ordeal. That meant the whole thing really was more of an adventure than a case of endurance.

We put twin and queen mattress tops on the floor next to the wood burning stove to keep us warm and snugly. The children had a great idea to keep us warm. They suggested that we put rocks on the top of the wood-burning stove so when they were hot, we could put them under our blankets to keep us warm. Hot rocks are great for warming cold feet in the winter!

The children and I played board games by lantern, and used flashlights to go between rooms or outdoors for wood. The wood-burning stove provided heat for the home, and it dried wet clothes from the kids playing in the snow. To top it all off, I learned to cook creatively on the top of that old stove (even though it wasn’t really meant for cooking) so meals were quite interesting.

I kept two pots of heated water on the wood stove at all times to wash cooking utensils and to make hot drinks. We used plastic utensils and paper products for drinking and eating, and then burned all the paper products in the stove for heat.

I actually tried heating snow on the stove one time to make soup. Although I found it interesting, heating it required so much snow to get just a little bit of melted water that I decided it was too much work to make soup. Besides, I had stored plenty of extra water and food so there was no need to worry about melting water for soup anyway. Making soup was really more of an experiment than a necessity.

We used the top of our snow-covered car to double as a refrigerator; as you can imagine, that was an interesting sight. Of course, the kids were disappointed that ice cream would not keep; that was the only thing they didn’t like about losing power! After two weeks, the electric company brought water in for people who were unable to get out, but that still left us at least another week or so without power.

We sparingly used several five-gallon containers of stored water to flush toilets, so we only flushed when it was absolutely necessary! We tried carrying water from the creek to fill the tanks and flush toilets, but that was too difficult. So we tried snow in the tanks and bowels to keep from using up too much water, but that didn’t work well either. As you might guess, the whole toilet thing was quite an experience. The toilet issue is the last thing on your mind when you prepare for emergencies, but it is truly one of the most important things to prepare for in your planning—trust me on this!

This experience happened more than 20 years ago, but we still remember it with fondness! At the time, my husband worked away from home for most of the time the power was off. He thought we were nuts when he came home and saw how we were living, especially since we all seemed to be enjoy the experience and no one was complaining.

Attitude Makes A Difference

You should recognize that being prepared helps us overcome the harshness of an experience. My own experience shows that, in spite of hardship, being prepared can turn an ordeal into a fun adventure! In other words, we overcome hard times with judicious planning, using our creativity, having a cheerful heart and cooperative spirit, and sporting smiling faces.



For more information about preparing, see our blog at or go to to purchase the items you need to prepare for raining days.

To see more information on this series CLICK HERE for The Treasure Box Series Web Site

To order this book through CLICK HERE or through my store CLICK HERE and use this discount coupon to save money. Because you are a reader of my blog, you can use this code U1L9JHIB16Y until May 31st, 2010 and get an $8 discount.

Please read all four parts of this Being Prepared Series.


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