Monday, April 21, 2014

Emergency Bag: Being Ready When Disaster Strikes

Growing up in Oklahoma, I learned first hand how the weather can quickly turn an ordinary day into a day like no other. Since tornado season is upon us once again, I thought this would be the perfect time to officially make an "Emergency Bag" for our impending family of four. You could certainly buy a pre-made emergency kit on sites like Amazon, but those bags cost upwards of $200 and frankly, didn't meet my needs anyway. We'll keep this bag stocked and in the downstairs closet along with a child size life vest and infant helmet because flash floods and falling debris can kill just as quickly as hurricane force winds.

Here's what's in my bag:

Baby wipes
Toiletry Kit {toothbrush & tooth paste, soap, medial tape, antibiotic ointment and a sewing kit}
Toilet paper
Hand sanitizer
First Aid Kit {pain relief, bandages, gauze, tampon, alcohol prep pads}
Food {fruit & nut bars, beef jerky, dried fruit}
Nylon Cord
A fire starter & matches
Swiss Army Knife and Everyman tool
Sheet & pillow case
HotHands packets
Change of clothes for the kids

Now most of these are self explanatory: baby wipes are still for wiping butts or other dirty things but the lone tampon in the First Aid kit is actually for an alternative use. Tampons were first used on the battle field to stanch the flow of deep wounds and it's in this capacity that I've included one in our emergency bag as well. I included the sewing kit because I gave away all my single suture packs and needed a quick stand in.

I made a fire starter out of dryer lent wrapped in a dryer sheet and stuffed into an empty toilet tissue roll. No sense having matches if you can't find kindling, right? The sheet was a second best option. I would have preferred a white sheet {if used to dress a wound it's easier to estimate blood loss} but since we no longer have a twin sized bed, it seemed wasteful to let this sheet and pillow case go to waste. The sheet can provide several different functions from a simple covering, wound dressings, to a make shift sunshade if needed and the pillow case is just in case we need to gather items as we find them.

In addition to the cash, I'll be adding photo copies of our vital records to this bag and an extra Epi injector will also take its place inside the smartly labeled red emergency box {Target dollar spot score}. I'm still on the hunt for a couple of cans of coconut water to add to the bag since it boasts a much longer shelf life than plastic water bottles, acts as an electrolyte solution and the empty cans could also be useful in a pinch.

Stay safe, friends!
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