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How to be Prepared for Anything (Part One)

By Nathan Coker
In AskErin
Sep 1st, 2023

by ERIN SHARPLIN LOVE  |  erinlove@panachebyerin.com

If you have read any of my articles on organizing, you have heard me reiterate the importance of always being prepared.  The most satisfying part of getting and staying organized is that feeling of relief and comfort that you will gain with the knowledge that you are prepared for whatever mishap may come your way.  Today I want to go a step further and give you specific ideas for creating themed “kits” that will come in handy when the need arises. 

Lights Out Kit: The “lights out” kit is for when you may lose electricity and do not have a generator.   Our lights out kit is actually on a shelf inside our laundry room cabinet, but you could have yours in a bin under the bed or anywhere else you feel most comfortable with it.  Below are some ideas of what to include in your lights out kit:

• Candles
• Lighter/matches
• Flashlights/headlamps
• Glowsticks (for the kids)
• Batteries 
• Rechargeable phone charger (these should be charged up during the rainy season in your area)
• Small solar panel 
• Small battery-operated fan and/or heater
• Hand-operated can opener

I also suggest keeping your bottled water pretty stocked up as well as canned goods and prepackaged protein bars.  I don’t include these items in this kit but they are always good to have in stock.  

FIRST-AID Kit:Most families have some version of a first-aid kit, but I am still going to include it here in case my kit has something that you have forgotten in yours.  One thing that I suggest is that you set aside a time every quarter to clean out and reorganize your first-aid kit.  I know that our household first-aid kit gets used on a pretty regular basis, so it needs to be restocked periodically.  My kids need band-aids for just about anything!  

Below is a list of items that I keep in our first-aid kit (which is a basket):

• Waterproof bandaids in various sizes
• Antibiotic ointments
• Alcohol pads
• Tweezers
• Scissors
• Medical Tape
• Gauze
• Butterfly bandaids
• Instant Cold Compress
• Nonlatex Gloves
• Burn cream
• Sting relief 
• Cotton swabs
• Sterile eye drops/wash
• Safety pins
• Pain relief medication

Car Kit: I don’t know about you, but I practically live in my vehicle between school, work, and softball/baseball games. Having a car kit is an absolute must!  I will preface this list by saying that most of the lists will include bottles of water, but I am not a fan of drinking water after it has been sitting in a vehicle for an extended period of time.  Especially during hot weather.  So, my list includes a refillable drink bottle instead.  Check out the other items below:

• Refillable drink container/bottle
• Small first-aid kit – Mine includes pain medication, a few band-aids, alcohol wipes, and tweezers.  
• Flashlight
• Extra change of clothing for my children.  
• Tire gauge
• Emergency flat repair
• Car safety hammer (find on Amazon)
• Paper towels
• Antibacterial wipes
• Travel toothbrush/toothpaste
• Deodorant
• Extra phone charger
• Food – My kids are always hungry right after we leave the house!  So, I always keep individually
wrapped snacks like pretzels, granola bars, and goldfish at the ready.
• Lint roller
• Scissors
• Black Sharpie
• Pens/Pencils
• Notebook/Pad of paper
• Umbrella/Rain poncho
• Bungee cords
• Glow stick/flare 

Now, I challenge you to create these kits before next month when I will give you at least three more kits that will definitely come in handy!