Dry Runs

Been hearing a lot on the radio and tv about The Big One. Apparently our water supply – well, the town’s water supply, we are on well water but who knows if we will be affected the same way – sits on land that will be affected by liquifaction, so the water will literally go down the plug hole. Meaning everyone will die of thirst, or be killed as a result of fighting over water. Good times.
There was a blackout at our house last weekend, so we had a practice run as to how things will go.
1. Everybody exclaim over the lack of power
2. Flick every light switch on and off quickly. We have a large house with loads of switches…
3. Trip over every toy on the floor whilst attempting to play in the dark
4. Ooh and aah over candles with faces alarmingly close to the flames
5. Grab and run around with flashlights
6. Open the fridge and stand in front of it to look at everything. Close fridge without putting anything in or taking anything out
7. Discover water is not working because the well pump is on the electricity, and therefore powerless.
8. Assume last nights dinner was a poor choice. Go to the bathroom. The exhaust fan will not work. The toilet cistern will not refill. Call out through semi-open bathroom door not to flush if you only do a wee.
9. Crack open last of the bulk bottled water. Leave half-drunk cups of water in every room
10. Accompany child to the bathroom because it’s still dark. Curse lack of exhaust fan. That’s now 3 toilets that are out of water.
11. Give everyone the last of the clif bars for breakfast. Weigh option of driving to store to buy more: using gas, risk of riots, getting shot etc, drawing attention to your use of resources from envious and desperate fellow citizens…
12. Decide against foraying into town. Go upstairs to use the bathroom. At least this window can open. That’s 4 toilets now used. Berate self for not buying this:

13. Mentally attempt to locate the funnel
14. Give self a talking to in the mirror about justifying not buying the expensive washboard, even though there is now almost no way to clean clothing etc.
15. Collect eggs from the chickens. Initiate smug internal monologue about disaster preparedness.
16. Have power miraculously return and save family from untimely death due to dire bathroom conditions.
17. Flush toilets because you can as often as you turn off the lights the kids flicked on earlier during calamity.
18. Go out for breakfast, flaunting resources with your devil-may-care attitude.

Take away notes from this experience:
*she pee
*buy more emergency waterbottles
*store spare fuel stored in jerry cans
*install underground panic room and escape hatch under kitchen bench
*investigate diy youtube videos on kitchen joinery and tunneling reinforcement
*consider pillow treatment for all in event of global catastrophe…

Putting the Pep back in our Prep


I saw this article today, and Husband demanded I forward it to him. We’ve been talking about earthquakes a bit lately, because the big one is overdue, donchaknow. Seriously, it’s overdue. If something does happen, it will be when he is away, though, so I’ve got to make sure that I am prepared as much as he is.
We haven’t stocked up on food for a while, so we wanted to buy one of those buckets that feed a family of 4 for a month during a zombie apocalypse, or something, at costco today, but they were sold out! We have thought about buying weapons, but we argue about that a lot, so we haven’t made any purchases. Friends of ours were very close to the fires in California a little while back and the possibility of looting and etc was too real. I’m naively assuming that is not a possibility for us, providing I stop blogging about it, so, yeah.
Anyhoo, we need more food and water, so will get onto costco online soon for the food caches and order those big bottles of water that are supposed to be for awkward hangouts in offices as well, because the thin plastic bottles in fred meyer, etc, get holes in them when you look at them.
We do have a cool hand pump that I got at home depot that the kids messed around with (and then I might have driven over becauae it was lefr on the bloody driveway), but it should still work with half the length of hose. We envision using it to pump water from the rain barrels so we can flush the toilets. On the drive across town today, I also thought we should get some terracotta pots that we could use to pump some water into for drinking, because one of the crazy preppers from tv said you can use them to filter water. He also knows how to make his own antibiotics, but I’m not ready for that just yet.
The thing is, though, that most prepping foods have wheat crap in them, so they won’t be good for nearly 4yo. Even during a few weeks or months of the national guard presence, I still want to have non-wheat foods (or faux foods, it won’t pay to be picky when all the stores have been looted, plus I need longevity in this stuff) for him/us.
Somewhere, I heard, read or saw that in just 3 days of no power, disrupted transport and/or widespread emergency situations, all stores selling food and drink will be empty. We aren’t near any stores, so we won’t have the luxury of 3 days of looting.
But where to put this stuff? If there is an earthquake, will the house fall over? We are on a hill. Will there be a landslide? A sink hole? I’ve put a container of food in our spare room, and there is a stash in our bathroom, but I think I need to put stuff in the outbuildings, too. I can’t put all my eggs in one house.
In the event of “holy fuck! We need to get out of here!” I have red backpacks filled with a day or two of stuff, plus medical supplies, those tinfoil blankets and a bunch of whathaveyou, but now I think we need duplicates for outside, in case the house is in a shambles. Because in the holy fuck event, we might not be able to get the backpacks.
I highly recommend emergency backpacks. They are a little bit of peace of mind in this whole preppers shenanigan paradise. I’m also contemplating life straws, for the same reason.
Let me know if I’m missing something from your emergency supplies list!

Doomsday Prepping

Because snow is apparently the end of the world, we were preparing for it. Husband charged batteries for the flashlights, the leapsters, phones, ipad, laptop, but not the car that has the chains. He reloaded my car with dry firewood from the barn and moved the outdoor pile into the garage, and then checked petrol levels in the jerry cans.
Snow was coming down thick and fast, and we got 15 + inches.

We have (a shit ton?) 6 toilets to share and flush throughout the house, so I wasn’t worried about running out of water. But we didn’t lose power and consequently the water pump, so we didn’t have to ration our bathroom breaks, and I still only have the 2 toilets to clean as a priority, and the rest can bugger off for a while longer.
The boys spent too long inside, annoying each other and watching lego game out-take movies waiting for the power to go out, but it didn’t go out, so they kept wanting to watch more instead of going outside to play in the white wonder that is usually so scarce. Eventually I changed out of my pajamas which signalled the end of indoor slouchery; everyone put on snow clothes and went outside to sled and whine about the cold.

There were no injuries, even though the boys were sledding head first into snow-covered rocks, so the first aid kits remain mostly unused. There were no road accidents on our street, though dudes on 4 wheelers pulling dudes on sleds at high speed went up and back numerous times. There were no marauders – always a relief – and there were no asteroids falling through the atmosphere. No bleeding from the eyes or swarms of locusts (maybe they fot frozen), no pillaging of Fred Meyer. So all in all, a pretty piss poor end of the world.
We didn’t use ANY of our emergency food supplies, which was a good dose of reality in terms of how often we actually need to go shopping, and there is still a few drops of milk left for the boys to argue about. We didn’t cook anything on top of the fireplace, and we didn’t need to melt snow for drinking. We actually could have driven around town (the whole time?) yesterday afternoon, but chose to sit in front of the fire for a little while longer. I think we could have managed school today, but the boys aren’t complaining about another day playing legoes and I’m not complaining because they are upstairs doing it and there is no shouting (loud enough for me to hear) coming from that direction (cue the extended interruption).
So next time (I just downloaded the Red Cross Earthquake app) we will be prepared with all the things we didn’t use this weekend, including 3 bottles of red wine, yet unopened. That is the real disaster.