Saturday, January 8, 2011

New Year's Resoulutions Part 2

I know New Year's day has come and gone but I am still working on completing some of the projects that I like to get done as my New Year's resolutions.  This year I am focusing on emergency preparedness. So here is what we are working on today
1.  Organizing Financial Paperwork Binder

--after hurricane Katrina the extension service interview victims of the flood asking a variety of questions. One of the question was concerning what items they wished they had saved from the devastation.  The interviewers were thinking people would say things like, family photos, wedding dresses, grandma's quilt. But overwhelmingly people said they wished that they had saved their financial paperwork. You can not do anything to rebuild your life unless you have your social security card, the address to your 401k, the password to your bank account, and your insurance policy.  But usually these things are filed in separate files and are hard to track down.  So the extension (the version I use was developed by extension agent Adrie Robers of Cache County) developed a binder system to organize all financial paper work for a family.
My family has been using this system for a couple of years now and we love it. Today I will go though it an update any new information. We/I always know where everything is, and if there is ever an emergency we can grab the binder as we run out of the house and know we have all of the information that we need. The other wonderful thing about is it by some freak chance my husband and I were both killed, those family members sorting through our affairs would easily be able to find all of our important information.
If  you live in Cache County UT you can buy a binder from the extension. If no you can create your own using the extension template.  Found here .  That document will walk you through each item you will want to have in your notebook.
I know this task sounds overwhelming, but it really only takes an hour or two to locate and record all your vital information.
It goes without saying that once you have all of this info together in one place you will want to keep it in a fire safe in a secure location of you house.

2. 72 Hour Kit Update

I like to go though my 72 hour kit every year and update water, food, clothes and toiletries.  There are many choices out there Shelf Reliance offers some excelled food options. For a detailed list click here.
This year we are adding a few items:

The wing stove. I have been looking at this for a long time and I don't know why I haven't done it yet. But I am doing it now.
The wing stove is one of the lightest and most compact fuel tablet holders on the market. This lightweight stove can fit into the palm of a hand, yet it can hold up to a gallon size pot. The fold out wings improve heat output by directing the flame upward.  Now includes six fuel tablets
* Lightweight and extremely compact
* Can hold up to a gallon size pot
* Fold out wings improve heat output
* Includes six fuel tablets
One of the lightest, most compact stoves on the market.
* Tablets can be easily lights with ordinary wooden matches, and can be extinguished and saved for reuse
And the best part is it is only $7.91. (If you to want one let me know  I'll put an order in later this week)

The Kitchen Sink
At last, a portable camp sink that really works! Great for collection and carrying of water for purification, cooking, washing dishes or personal bathing.
  • Unique design with stainless steel stiffening ring that prevents the sink from collapsing when full
  • Base is broader than top so it won’t tip over in use
  • Fine to use with hot water and detergent
  • Fully taped seams
  • Wide webbing carry handles
  • Comes with its own handy storage pouch
  • Price $22.72  (If you to want one let me know  I'll put an order in later this week)
Sparkie Fire Starter
Sparkie is a compact, one-handed fire starter that can light a fire even in the pouring rain! It weighs only an 0.8 of an ounce and is easily operated. The striker is set at the perfect angle to achieve maximum sparks making it a simple, but life-saving, aspect in case of an emergency.

Gas Shut Off Tool**
This easy to use gas shut-off tool is a must have for every home and business. Fits a 1/2" valve as well a 3/4" valve.  In an emergency, you don't have time to go find a wrench in the garage.  Zip tie this tool to your gas meter in the event of fire, or when you smell gas in your home.  This gas shut-off tool can be the difference between life and death.
* Zinc-plated steel
* Light Reflective
* Easy to use

** Gas meters generally have a ball valve.  You only turn the valve 90 degrees to shut off the gas flow (but it will continue to spin).  If you continue spinning, you will turn the gas back on (and off and on and off and on......).  To turn off the gas, make sure that the rectangular bolt is going across the pipe.  Before turning the gas back on, it is recommended that you contact a professional to ensure all pilot lights are lit properly and verify there are no gas leaks.  Here is a great page with some more information

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