Ready or Not #173: 72 Hour Kits and Gardens

Well, what do you know, more earthquakes – 6.8 in the Solomon Islands, 6.3 in Spain and a 6.9 earthquake in China – last reported 1,900 dead, but that number is expected to rise.  So, what are you doing to get prepared?  Guess what I’m doing, I am getting – a new backpack for my 72hr. kit!  After all of these years of having a bag that I carried, I am now upgrading to a pack that I get to wear.  I can’t wait until it gets here!

It is springtime and now is a good time to check your 72hr. kits and upgrade what you can and change out clothes for seasonal appropriate wear.  Make it part of your spring cleaning regimen.  Also make sure that you can access it easily; remember – grab-n-go.  I really hope that you are getting your emergency kits upgraded and ready too because it is not a matter of “if”, but “when” it will be “our turn”.

Another thing that I hope you are working on is your food storage.  The easiest thing to start with is your water – and it is also the most important item.  Two gallons, per person, per day for a two week period.

Since I finished my food storage worksheets, I have been slowly, but surely, re-building my food and sundry storage.  The only thing that I need now in my non-food storage is a few more tubes of toothpaste and a couple more cases of toilet paper.  Yes, I started with the important stuff first and yes, that means that I have a year supply of hairspray.  It is all in your perspective.  But don’t forget things like extra contact lenses and solution and a back-up pair of glasses – very important.  And medication – do what you can, but also get several good first-aid kits scattered around the house, car and work.

As far as building our food storage, I am diligently working on it and pretty soon we are going to be planting our garden and then I can freeze, dry and bottle to my heart’s delight.  As you plan your garden, big or small, in the ground or in a container, I want you take some time to really think about it so that you can get the results you want.  I think that I am going to try a lot of the heirloom seeds this year.  My neighbor only uses the heirloom seeds and she always has such a beautiful garden.  I know that it isn’t just the seeds that make her garden a productive showpiece, but it is all the work and time that she invests.  I swear she is Mother Nature’s younger sister.

The reason that I am intrigued with the heirloom seeds is because when you really enjoy a particular fruit or vegetable, you can save the seeds and grow them the next year and get what you expect.  The seeds haven’t been messed around with by the scientist to make them “bigger and better”.

The other reason that I want to start using them is because if we ever get to the point where we are unable to get seeds or they are extremely expensive because of supply and demand, I won’t have to worry about buying new seeds, I can just use the ones that I saved from the previous harvest – just like my grandma did!

I have never liked gardening because when I was a kid it always seemed like it was such a hot and sweaty chore and it seemed like we were constantly weeding.  Since I have grown up, I still hate gardening (gasp); I know I was supposed to grow up and love playing in the dirt, but I don’t.  That being said, I still need to have a garden and use it to supplement my food budget and storage.  My purpose for this sob story is when you start your children gardening, start them when they are young and make it more of an adventure than a chore – then they won’t turn out like me and rely on their spouse to build and maintain a beautifully productive garden.

I have mentioned this idea once before, but have the kids “plant” a playhouse of sunflowers.  Plant the seeds in a square to form walls and when the sunflowers start to grow, plant trellising plants that the kids can eat from, like snow peas, green beans or grape tomatoes.  It will be a fun place for the children to play, they will have delicious snacks to eat and share and all the while they are learning to grow their own special little garden.  Brilliant!

When it comes harvest time and they have to pull up their home-grown playhouse, they can cut the sunflower heads off and either prepare them to eat during the winter months or hang them outside from the trees to feed the birds in the winter.  This is actually starting to sound fun; maybe it won’t be so bad taking care of the garden this year.

I read a wonderful talk by Marti Grobecker that I want to share with you.  It was on the Peace of Preparedness website and it is titled, “Why Prepare? If ye are prepared ye shall not fear”.  This is an inspired talk that helps remind you why we want to be prepared and that if we truly have the desire and work towards preparing our family for the future, we will be given the means and opportunity to grow and do as we have been commanded.  You will find the article at:  http://peaceofpreparedness.com/LDS%20Resources/17%20Why%20Prepare-FINAL.pdf and really, get your water stored!

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