emergency preparedness

Personal Water Filters – Emergency Preparedness

*I received the product mentioned free of charge for the purposes of this review.  The opinions are mine alone.  I will NEVER recommend something I don’t truly believe in.



320px-FEMA_-_37174_-_Emergency_Preparedness_^quot,ready_to_go^quot,_kit.Most of you know that I am into emergency preparedness.  I don’t go as far as to worry about living in tent cities or storing items I don’t use for barter, but I do like to have items around to keep my family safe if something were to happen.  We have a food storage, and I keep several first-aid kits throughout my home and in my cars.  I also keep a 72-hour kit for each of my family members.


A few months ago, I read about water filter straws.  The idea intrigued me, and I wanted to learn more.  They are pretty cool, it turns out!  After hearing about the woman who survived for 9 days in the wilderness in the Sierra National Forest, I’m betting that there are others who are curious about these water filters as well.  What an amazing story that is!  I’m so glad it had a happy ending.  :)


I actually received an Acquapura water filter straw about a month ago so that I could review it.  Let me tell you a little about how these things work:


  • Triple Layer Filtration System – makes water 100% safe to drink; Softens Water and Eliminates Water Odor
    Features a Unique Cap with an Innovative Dust-Free Design; Protecting You from the Secondary Pollution of the Outlet Mouthpiece.
    Certified By the WQA and the TUV-SUD; the Most Respected Ranking Organizations for These Types of Products.
    Filters 99.999% of Waterborne Bacteria Greater Than .01 Microns
    Exclusive Antibacterial GAC “Damping System” with UF Membrane Ensures that Raw Water is Completely Filtrated.
  • • Compact and Light-Weight at just 2.12 Oz (60 Grams)

These things are genius!  I wish I’d learned about them before, but I am certainly grateful that I have not been in a position in which I needed one for survival.  I have already purchased more so that I can add one to each of our 72-hour kits.  I’m thinking they are a must have for any wilderness camping and hiking too.  You just never know, and they don’t take up any space or weigh a thing…so why not?


This is just another item that I think is a must have in our emergency kits.  When disaster hits, water can quickly become a vital resource, but not if you can’t filter it.  Buy yourself some peace of mind and look into these; I really recommend it.  You can click HERE to purchase this specific brand (NOT an affiliate link; I won’t get a penny if you purchase), or search for other brands online.  There are many options, and I really feel that they are worth every penny!




Emergency Kits – Hand Sanitizer

This week let’s add some HAND SANITIZER to our emergency/72-hour kits.




Hand sanitizers can help prevent the spread of disease and germs almost as well as soap and water…and in emergency situations where you may not have a lot of water to spare, it can come in very handy.  Of course, if water IS available, then washing the traditional way is always best.


You can buy hand sanitizer just about anywhere.  I usually buy mine at the dollar store, unless I happen to see it at the grocery store for less than a dollar.  Very cheap, easy to buy, easy to store!  So no excuses, let’s get it added.



Emergency Kit – Ponchos 2 comments

This week we’re going to focus on purchasing ponchos.

The best price I found on Amazon.com was for the above pictured 4-pack of emergency ponchos for $7.58.


I also found a 3-pack of children’s emergency ponchos for $3.99.

Ponchos are such a great item to add to your kit for a few reasons.  They don’t take up much space at all, they are easy to use, and they not only can keep you dry, but they can help keep you warm in the event that you are in a cold emergency situation.  It’s just one more layer of insulation you can use!


Emergency Kits – Emergency Blankets

Since we talked about comfort items last week, today we’re going to be going back to some of the basics.  Last week it was suggested that we look for items of comfort; i.e., stuffed animals, soft and small blankets, comfort food, etc.  Today we’re going to focus on blankets of another sort.


Emergency Blankets


The pack of 10 pictured above can be purchased at Amazon.com. Many times you can find these on sale at hardware stores and grocery stores for around $1 each, so they’re not a huge expense.


Along the same lines, if you feel that you’d like to add something more “hardy” to your kit, you can always check out Emergency Sleeping Bags.  Same basic concept as the blanket, but a little bigger to allow you to wrap yourself completely up in it.



72-hour Kits – Comfort Me

This week we are going to be focusing on gathering for our emergency kits:


Comfort Food/Items


Now that we’ve got many of our most basic needs in our kits (first aid items, food/water, personal hygiene, etc) it’s time to start thinking about some of the things we may not see as a necessity, but that can make a HUGE difference in how an emergency plays out in your family.


A tragic situation can become manageable when we receive a little bit of comfort:  A hug, an encouraging word, a favorite song, a cuddly toy, and yes, perhaps even our favorite comfort food.  These things can turn a frown upside down, can’t they?  Even if temporarily.



Head to the dollar store and get a small stuffed animal to put in your child’s kit, or even in yours! (Or simply grab one from your house and stick it in.)  What are some of your favorite foods?  Is there a non-perishable version?  Think small pieces of candy, beef jerky, crackers, etc.  Perhaps you could include a small, soft piece of cloth or a small soft blanket.  Anything that you can think of that will fit, and that will provide comfort.


Of course, don’t fill your kits up with the comfort stuff first.  Always make sure your basic needs will be met, and then supplement away with some of these fun, comfort-providing items.


Until next week…

Emergency Kits – Dust Masks

This week for our emergency kits, we’re going to focus on


Dust Masks


The one pictured above has all positive ratings on Amazon.com, and can be bought in packs of 10 for $13.99 currently. You can also purchase simpler masks from the Dollar Store, and although they are thinner and more flimsy, they are still better than nothing, and obviously will not cost you as much out of pocket!


Why should we keep Dust/Allergy masks on hand?  According to Achoo Allergy:

“From yard work and enjoying the outdoors, to commuting to work or traveling on vacation, you have to be wary of potential contact with allergens or other symptom causing agents. Wearing a face mask or respirator is one of the easiest ways to reduce or eliminate your exposure to dust, pollen, soot, chemical pollutants, and mold as well as bacteria and the influenza virus.”

“Allergy relief masks are great for people who:

  • Are allergic to dust, mold spores or pollen
  • Have sensitivities to airborne allergens
  • Are irritated by particulates when doing yard work or household chores
  • Have trouble breathing in polluted environments
  • Have general allergies or asthma related health problems
  • Are concerned with H1N1, the Avian Flu or other types of flu viruses or bacteria”


Emergency Kits – Need a Knife??

Welcome to another edition of our “72-Hour Kit” Series.  Each week I will share ideas for items to add to your emergency/72-hour kit(s).  The hope is that by taking small steps every week, we will become better prepared without spending a fortune.


This week we are focusing on KNIVES.


Why is it important to have a knife in your emergency kit? And what kinds are best?


Typically, having a multifunction knife is best.  Of course, before you decide on a specific type/brand, you need to consider a couple of things:

  • Where do you live?  If you are in a cold climate, you may want/need a knife in your kit that will be able to cut wood for fires and heat, that kinda thing.  If you live in a warmer climate, your needs will be different.
  • What type(s) of emergencies are more likely in your area?  Of course we can’t predict all disasters, but for me, living in Utah, I’m not likely going to have to worry about hurricanes, or even tornadoes.  Do you live near an earthquake fault line?  Are you in tornado country?  Are wildfires a common occurrence in your state?  Knowing and thinking about these things may also help you to get a better idea of what you’ll be in need of.

This knife is a nice one, with a lot of functions.  It retails for $60.95.  Currently it is on sale at Amazon.com for only $27.43!  This is a Tool Logic SLP2 with a tactical folding 1/2 serrated knife with LED flashlight, magnesium fire starter and signal whistle.


This knife, on sale at Amazon.com right now for only $0.99 plus shipping, retails for $19.99 and is a small keychain-type multifunction knife.  It has a small compass on it as well.


There are hundreds of different options for knives.  If you don’t like the two I’ve highlighted above, then by all means, do a search for others.  There are SO many choices!  Here are some places I’d recommend looking for more information:


BladeOps blog

Essential Packs


The Knife Connection



72-Hour Kits – Matches…Waterproof Matches

Welcome to another edition of our “72-Hour Kit” Series.  Each week I will share ideas for items to add to your emergency/72-hour kit(s).  The hope is that by taking small steps every week, we will become better prepared without spending a fortune.


This week we are focusing on matches…waterproof matches, that is.  Now we all know that waterproof matches are more expensive than the regular ones, but it’s not tough at all to make your regular matches waterproof!

  • The easiest method is probably using turpentine. Turpentine is NOT my preferred way, although it is the simplest.  The only reasons I don’t like it are because I don’t typically have it on hand, and because it can be an irritant to eyes, skin, etc. However, if you happen to have it on hand, you may want to try it out!  It involves simply dipping your matches into the turpentine for awhile, and then letting them dry.  Head on over HERE for complete instructions!


  • Another method (not as quick, but just as simple and my preferred method) is to dip your match heads into melted wax.  Coat them completely and allow them to dry.  I just light a plain candle and use the melted wax from that.  Boom, done!  Some don’t like this method because there is a risk of getting burned by the hot melted wax.  *If you’d like, you can dip the entire match into the wax, which will prevent moisture from migrating up the stick in the future.
(Photo credit)


  • You can also dip your match heads into clear nail polish.  This method is quick and easy, but if you are like me and have no clear nail polish on hand, one of the others may be easier.  This is also a little more expensive than the other methods, if you are making a big batch of waterproof matches.


Okay, so now there are no excuses! Let’s get waterproofing!!  And remember, if your matches are not the “Strike Anywhere” kind, be sure to keep a striking surface with the matches you waterproof.





Emergency Kits/72 Hour Kits – Batteries 2 comments



It’s been a little while since I’ve updated my emergency kit, and I apologize for not posting either.  I’m back on track…


This week we are going to stock up on one thing:





If money is tight, then you can buy different-sized batteries at the dollar store.  If you get $5 worth, you’ll have five packs of whatever size battery you need!  Quick, cheap, easy.


I personally am not a big fan of regular batteries.  I own rechargeable batteries and am a big fan of using those whenever possible.  However, in an emergency, there may not be electricity, and you may not have the option to charge!  So for the emergency kit, go for the regular batteries.  I will be purchasing 1 package of AAAs, two packages of AA, one of B, one of C, and one of D.  I want the variety.


Good luck!

Emergency Kits – It’s Not About the Money, Money, Money

Y’all like that song?  Price Tag?  It’s a goody.


Well, it’s not true.  :-)


Kind of.  This week’s emergency kit focus is going to be on the money.  Ideally, you can put a bunch away, but realistically, probably not.  So, let’s focus on putting a little away each week, or each month.  Ya got an extra $5 at the end of the week?  Throw it in there.  You DON’T have any extra dough lying around?  Find a way to budget it in, if possible.

I like to store mine in an old prescription bottle, just to keep it waterproof.


A piece of advice I received from my grandfather was to keep small bills in your emergency kits. If there is no power available in an emergency and you’re needing to purchase something, stores may not have access to a lot of change.


Let’s go find some cash!