Rekindle your preparedness kit romance. Get your 72-hour kits out of the closet, brush off the dust. Bring it back to the way things used to be.
Hello, February!! We’ve had many crazy snow and ice storm days here in the Pacific NW since the beginning of the year. As if I needed more than normal life to derail my resolutions. However, the storms certainly helped me accomplish a few. We’ve spent several days homebound due to icy hills, freezing temps, and howling wind. Oh, and a few power outages. Lots of opportunity for preparedness practice at our house! It’s made me realize that I’ve fallen out of love with my emergency kits.
As we’ve learned from our power outages and tried to follow through with the goals we set, I’ve learned 5 lessons about how this happened and how to reclaim the preparedness relationship I used to have with my emergency kits.
Lesson 1: Making an emergency kit isn’t enough!
Keep the fire alive for your kit so it doesn’t die out and leave you stranded. We often assume the hard part of being prepared is getting started. I think keeping the kit ready for action may actually be harder than starting from scratch.
Things change, A LOT when you have kids. Growth spurts, new babies, potty training and diapers, the seasons, new school years, and activities!
All these variables affect our preparedness supplies as much as they influence our day-to-day lives. But since these changes usually have us rushing around before we’ve fully adapted we often neglect to update our kits, plans, and forms. So, a few years could go by before you get around to re-doing it and by then, half your kit has to be replaced, (A shameful cough) like mine. Which leads to…
Lesson 2: Set biannual or quarterly dates with your 72-hour kits.
Refresh your memory for what’s in those bags, and update what is outdated.
I like to think of my preparedness kit as my Survivor Alter Ego, my silent second life. Sadly it’s as messed up as anyone would be if they were locked up in a closet for a year at a time.
I have kids and limited space, so all the kits will not fit into one place. Instead, we stash the kits where kids can’t “enjoy” them and they are scattered throughout my house. I rationalize this as not putting all my eggs in one basket. Truth be told it just makes staying on top of things even harder. Get around this by setting regular dates with your kits. Like the doctors or the dentist.
Hopefully, you date your spouse more than twice a year. Include your kit in your conversations. Think about it, more than just a fleeting “I should look through that.” Date your kit!
LESSON 3: Store your stuff together.
Long distance relationships are complicated and hard.
You know what keeps me from starting to go through my kits? That I need to have everything out to go through it. With 8 people in my family that can be a LOT of work! Naturally, there’s always a reason we can’t get together.
Related Content: Building your Emergency Supplies without Stress
Not enough time, space, or the house is destroyed already. The easier your kits are to access, the more you’ll be able to connect with them. Not just to keep them stocked and rotated, but when you NEED them in an emergency. Close the gap!
Lesson 4: It’s a family affair!
No one really appreciates what others quietly do for them.
If you always get stuck with clean up, you resent it and eventually get a bit burnt out or apathetic about it. It’s not good for one person in a relationship to carry all the weight. Teamwork is important.
More importantly, what you don’t work on, you don’t think about. Preparedness is a mindset, a lifestyle! It needs to be a part of your regular life, and your family’s too! Involve them in your emergency kit preparations and updates, embrace it.
More importantly, listen to your family’s thoughts and opinions (unless you have small children than just smile and nod because their suggestions will likely be hilarious!). It’s their kit too, so help all family members be invested in the relationship.
Lesson 5: Make it fun!
Hopefully, you don’t approach date night with a business attitude. “Hello hun, it’s time for our monthly dinner meeting. Here’s the agenda for the evening.”
I would find excuses to avoid that date night, and probably any of those dates in the future. So make it fun! Don’t just go through your checklist quickly try to get through it so you can do something else. Make it a scavenger hunt, a race, a look-and-find game. Laugh and talk together as you work.
Even just having old (not expired or moldy) food from your 72-hour kits while you watch a movie and sort through them makes the job more enjoyable. You may even want to have dates with your kit(s) more than once every year or so.
This February, please rekindle that preparedness romance. Fish those kits out of the closet, brush off the dust. Open up your backpack and your heart to the way things used to be. It could save your life one day.
Tell us, how did your kit date go? Did you rekindle the romance?