Be Prepared With An Emergency Supplies Kit – What and How to Pack

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A few weeks ago, residents in Hawaii were alerted to a ballistic missile threat, and ordered to seek immediate shelter. Fortunately, it ended up being a false alarm. Whoops! Just kidding! Hooray!

Emerging from this experience caused me to confront the reality that our family needed to be better prepared for emergencies. Even if a ballistic missile never comes our way, we still live in a place where hurricanes and tsunami warnings are an annual seasonal occurrence. Based on those possible emergencies, I decided we needed to prepare to survive on our own with no electricity and running water for two weeks.

I made sure our house is stocked with water, food, and other supplies that will last us for at least 14 days. At one gallon of water per person per day, that is a lot of water! Thankfully we have a garage where we can store most of that stuff.

In terms of food, we have a variety of non-perishable food, including:

  • Canned goods
  • Dried fruit and nuts
  • Peanut butter
  • Granola bars
  • Freeze dried meals – This stuff has a really long shelf life (20-30 years), is very portable, and just needs water to make a meal. We have meals from Mountain House and Augason Farms. I researched options for a while, and decided on these brands that were highly recommended.

Additionally, I put together two emergency kits – one large bin to keep in the garage, and one backpack to keep in our van.

I happened to post a photo of our emergency bin on Instagram and Facebook, and received a bunch of requests from friends to share my emergency supplies lists. Apparently I wasn’t the only one feeling underprepared for emergencies. So I decided to put together a post on how to pack an emergency kit of basic disaster supplies. This was a large task that took me hours of research and planning – but I’m sharing it with you so you can be prepared as well.

My list fits the needs of our family of five plus a dog living in Hawaii. You will need to consider your unique needs, and adjust your emergency supplies accordingly. Think about your family’s needs, and also the most likely emergency scenarios in your geographic area.

We had lots of these items stored in random places in our garage or drawers, but had to buy a few things. Now everything is in one easy-to-find place.

This list includes what I packed in the bin for home, what I packed in the grab-and-go backpack, and what other essential things to grab in an emergency, such as our wallets and cell phones.

Emergency Supplies Kit

Print this list

Store supplies in a plastic bin that is easy to carry, and won’t get water damaged, like these Sterlite bins. For a grab-and-go bag, use a sturdy backpack or duffle bag. Print out your inventory list, and keep a copy in your bin so you know what you packed, and date it with the date of when it was put together. Maintain your bin by replacing expired items as needed, such as food, medicine, and batteries. Assess your supplies once a year, and update your kit depending on your changing needs.

What’s in the bin:

What’s in the grab-and-go bag:

  • First-aid kit
  • Whistle
  • Cash in small denominations
  • Radio with extra batteries
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Multitool
  • Important documents in waterproof folder – identification, birth certificates, etc.
  • Food
  • Water
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Sanitary wipes
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Duct tape
  • Poncho
  • Carabiner clips
  • Mylar thermal blanket
  • Matches
  • Bungee cords and rope
  • Tarp
  • Travel towel
  • Pencil, pen, and notebook

Additional supplies to grab in emergency:

  • Wallets
  • Cell phones and chargers
  • Keys for house and cars
  • Folder of important documents
  • Non-perishable food and water (in garage and storage closet)
  • Sleeping bag or blanket for each person
  • Prescription medication
  • Extra clothes and shoes
  • Pet food and dishes for dog
  • Grab-and-go bag (in car)
  • Camping stove, propane, and pot
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Personal hygiene items
  • Wrench to turn off utilities

For more resources on emergency preparedness, visit ready.gov.

Let me know what else you’d add to your list!

Bacon Maple Glazed Cake Bites

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Oh hey there. It’s been quiet here on this blog for a while. Life has been quite full with a variety of things – settling into a new home on the West Side of Oahu, getting a spunky labrador named Pono, ministry adventures, somehow making life with three kids work out. Anyway, I’m still here.

I’ve been mostly cooking a lot of tried and true meals, so I haven’t had anything new to post. In fact, I often come back to my Recipe Archives when I need ideas of what to cook. But this past weekend I felt like trying something new, and came up with these bacon maple glazed cake bites. Do you like bacon? I hope so, because then I can trust you.

This recipe was born out of things I had around the kitchen. Pound cake from Costco. Thick cut bacon. An easy-to-make maple glaze. I like the combo of sweet and salty. For something extra, I added a touch of fresh rosemary. This was a simple appetizer that would fit into a holiday party or potluck gathering.

Okay, I miss you after my long blogging hiatus. Would you please drop into the comments and say hello? Bonus, tell me one fun fact about yourself.

Bacon Maple Glazed Cake Bites

Print this recipe
Yield: about 36 cake bites

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf pound cake, cut into 1- or 2-inch pieces
  • 6 strips of bacon, cooked, cooled, and chopped into small pieces
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • Salt
  • Fresh rosemary (optional), chopped into very small pieces

Directions

To make the glaze: in a small bowl, stir together confectioners’ sugar, a pinch of salt, and maple syrup. Glaze should be a spreadable consistency.

Spread glaze on each piece of cake. Top with bits of bacon. If using rosemary, sprinkle on top the bacon.

Serve chilled or at room temperature.

 

 

6 Cooking Tools I Use Daily

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Like most home cooks, my kitchen is full of gadgets, tools, and appliances. Some items are used for special occasions, but others are used on a daily basis. Here are the items in our kitchen that get the most use. They are our workhorses in our kitchen, and the tools that really lay the foundation for all of our family’s cooking.

41okb6os7jlLodge Cast Iron Dutch Oven (buy it here on Amazon)

This cast iron dutch oven gets a lot of use in our house. It can do so many things – braised and seared meats, stews and soups, perfectly baked sourdough bread, baked casseroles. We’ve even taken it on camping trips. I’ve owned my dutch oven for about 6 years, and plan to pass it on to my kids as a family heirloom. This thing will definitely live longer than me.

71cagmgumnl-_sl1500_Cuisinart 12-Piece Knife Set (buy it here on Amazon)

We actually own two knife sets – this Cuisinart 12-piece set, and a full Cutco set that I’ve had since selling Cutco knives as a summer job during college. I like this set because they are good, solid stainless steel knives. They come with blade guards, and comfortable handles.

81e685wuucl-_sx425_Pyrex Mixing Bowls (buy it here on Amazon)

These glass mixing bowls are great for mixing or storing anything from salads to cake batter. They are really sturdy, and we’ve own ours since getting married over 10 years ago.

81bo7tjzyll-_sl1500_Silicone Pot Holders (buy it here on Amazon)

These were given to me as a gift a few years ago, and I did not expect to use them so frequently. They can be used as pot holders, trivets, can openers, and spoon rests. Also, they are super easy to clean.

71piuvb9-dl-_sl1067_Digital Kitchen Scale (buy it here on Amazon)

This kitchen scale is so useful. It is great for measuring food by weight, which is important if you’re following recipes that call for ingredients in grams or ounces. The scale is very precise, has a tare function (so you can automatically subtract the weight of your container), and has a unit button that converts to various weight measurements.

61qv9tsgqil-_sl1500_OXO Good Grips Tongs (buy it here on Amazon)

You need yourself a good pair of tongs. This version is great because it is a long 12-inches, and has silicone heads that are safe for non-stick cookware.

What are some of your favorite cooking tools that you use on a regular basis?