The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

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Sunday 30 April 2017

Pantries and Preparedness with Glenda. Preparing to evacuate.

Todays subject today is evacuations. This is my least favourite subject ever!  It would take being forced to evacuate for me I think but that can happen. So it is something we don't want to think about but should.  I am going to turn this over to Glenda who knows much more than I do.
I am sprinkling this post with lovely photos that have been sent in recently.
Over to Glenda...

   I wanted to share another prepping aspect with you other than food, water, etc. The cyclone made me think of it.
   Fires, cyclones, tornados, hurricanes, and earthquakes present a different aspect to preparedness. The stores one has at home may or may not be used, depending on whether 'staying put' or 'evacuating.' If staying put, those stores can be a life saver; literally. If evacuating, then there is another entire aspect to consider.

Chloe has been picking figs over the last month or so. 

   For evacuation, having a bag ready for each individual and animals is essential. Here in the States, unplanned evacuations mean going to a pre-determined shelter. Most often, that is a cot surrounded by a large number of other people one does not know. Food and water are doled out slowly and at a minimum. Most of us, in the States, that are familiar with some of the natural disasters can attest to the necessity of people who were unaffected helping; not necessarily relying on the Government.

Rachel found pink peppercorns. I think they are glorious and useful!

   Extra medications, supplemental foods, such as granola bars, bags of nuts, etc., small waters, travel toothbrush and toothpaste, extra underwear, and whatever else someone needs to be comfortable should be in the bag. Don't forget cash to have to purchase items needed, in case they are available.  Many people keep these 'ready to go' bags, in a spot by the backdoor or in a heated garage (kept at 40 to 45 degrees). That way they can 'grab and go,' should they need to evacuate immediately or with limited time.

Another loaf of Jane's sky high sour dough bread!

   Another thing, we have done, is to have a hard bound Record book ready. All the numbers of all accounts including utilities;  Doctors, Dentists, and others phone numbers; e-mail addresses; phones numbers of all family and friends; in short; every contact a person would need to make if they weren't able to go back to their home. Birth certificates (originals, if you keep them at home or copies if you don't); marriage licenses; photos of rooms and listing of all possessions for insurance purposes; death certificates if pertinent for estates; and any other document that is important and would be wanted or needed in the future, should be ready and kept up to date to be grabbed at a moment's notice.

Kelsey's Banana Nut Bread. This looks so good!

   The benefit of having such a notebook or Record book is that a person, on short notice to evacuate, has everything in one location and can grab it, put it in their 'ready to go,' bag and not have to worry about losing all account numbers and other important documents. 
   Don't forget the pets. Shot records, extra leashes, tags, food, water, snacks, should be packed in a bag for the pets that are to go with you.

Rachel's olives! 

   When people live in neighborhoods, in the city or even small towns, fire is a big issue. It's always best to be prepared for a neighbors mistake or negligence. We live on the plains with mountains in the West and grass prairie fires and mountain fires are common. Of course, if a fire starts in a person's home, it is hard and, sometimes, impossible to ever be prepared or get out with anything; that is the only exception I can think of in preparedness, unless we go really out there and say a nuclear attack or something similar.
   An evacuation, due to a natural disaster, usually has a fair amount of warning. Anyone who values their privacy and wants to be away from unknown crowds might want to book a motel room in a city/town away from the designated warning area. Even evacuating and not needing to do so might be smarter, if the conditions are extremely unknown, than staying put and having no way other than a shelter in which to relocate. Afterwards, if no damage has been done to one's property, then returning home would be a true blessing.

Teri uses Cookie's bread recipe to make scrolls. (Yum!)

   Full coverage of insurance is very wise. Replacement insurance replaces a home for the value it would be assessed at, so one can rebuild. Replacement insurance on the contents allows for full coverage replacement of inside items, which is why a full accounting with pictures is necessary to grab and go with.
   I pray none of the Bluebirds or their families ever go through a hurricane, cyclone, tornado, earthquake, or fire. Being prepared just makes life a lot easier and less stressful in every aspect of life.   A lot of people never think about this aspect of preparedness and panic if a situation arises. A situation where a person is not in control of their residence or life is scary and extremely stressful to the body. We have powder packets of vitamins, minerals, and dehydration nutrients that are very small in tubes that go in the bags. The powder only needs added to a water bottle. Keeping one's health up is very important when under stress.

Thank you Glenda.  I am working on a list and an action plan as it would be almost impossible to think clearly in a crisis if you were given minutes to leave.

Also on the subject of preparedness...

Vicky was featured for a handy preparedness post she wrote for Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth called Egg substitutions- Free Printable List.  This post becomes another page in the Preparedness Binder Jes has us putting together. I love this series!

Then I have to show you this.... Harper taking out the rubbish (Scarlett's nappies I am pretty sure) and being Mummy's helper... she is looking so grown up now...

Today is the first of May!  I can hardly believe it!  I need to do some thinking and planning and set some goals for the month.
How have you been improving your preparedness or building up your pantry?

Have a good new week! xxx


  1. I have been working on my list too! This is great information to have and I know it really makes sense to have a bag ready! Harper is just too cute! Have a great week!

    1. Thanks Vickie. I have a lot of work to do in this area. I need it all written down. All documents are in one spot and all vital ones are in one folder so thats a start! Have a good week to you too! xxx

  2. Dear Annabel, firstly thankyou to Glenda for her advice as I have often thought what if I have to leave home and all my stores here.Hubby pays all the bills and paperwork for insurance etc here , I use to long ago,and now Im a bit clueless as to it all. I need to think more about this. I do have bags in the car boots with jacket,sneakers, rug, water, torch , jumper leads, first aid basic kit and some other odds and ends It does fill up my small car boot somewhat lol.And is the cause of humour to some.
    Chloe has done well gathering all those figs.
    Rachel did well to find those lovely pink peppercorns.
    Jane's bread is amazing!
    Kelsey's banana nut bread looks very yummy too.
    Rachel-you have been busy bottling those green olives.
    Teri your scrolls are looking perfect!
    Harper is too cute for words and such a helper to Lucy , what a darling !
    Im hoping for good news for Andy's interview today and hoping you are okay ....
    It's winter here today with strong winds and 11C but so pleased the sun has been out and it's dry, as opposed to what last night was like .
    Thankyou ladies, love Maria xxx

    1. Dear Maria, Thanks! Thanks too for commenting on everyones photos!
      Andy had a successful interview this morning.... and he got the job! It is not a full time job but it looks to be about four days a week. It will vary slightly from week to week but it is doing work he loves. So the next few weeks will be a bit of an adjustment and getting into the swing of it. He is VERY HAPPY and I am too (and relieved)
      Just get your husband to make sure you know where all important documents are kept etc that is the main thing. With lots of love,

    2. Thank you, Maria!! Your words are always warming!!

  3. Dear Annabel and Glenda and beautiful bluebirds. Thank you Annabel and Glenda for another excellent post. Thank you to Terri, Rachel, Kelsey, Jane Rachel and Chloe for the gorgeous photos . This is a brilliant post Glenda, full of wonderful information , thank you so much Glenda . Glenda you are full of such amazing information , I would really love to sit down and have a chat to you one day. If I am correct though we live a long way from each other!.. Thanks again . Love BarbW.

    1. Dear Barb,
      Glenda is wonderful to talk to! Well I can only say talk to via emails but still! And yes she is a long way away in the USA!
      Each thing is a step to getting ourselves organised. I am so glad we can break it down into steps! I hope you are feeling much better as the week goes on Barb, with love,

  4. Annabel that little girl is such a cutie pie. The Granny in me wants to just pick her up and cuddle and kiss her.
    Glenda you have given us a lot to think about. We have been thinking about what we would do in the event of a cyclone, as this is the major natural disaster that could occur in this area. We have our caravan set up with the dry goods but nothing in the fridge range. If we were given the order to leave, this is usually 24 hours before the danger zone and stay put time, we would have the caravan packed with all essentials, clothes, meds and be hooked up and on our way in about an hour. The caravan is where guests stay so it is always clean and tidy. We do keep extra dry good in the caravan as a bit of a storage area. It's our rather large 'go bag'. This would give us about 2 weeks of being self sufficient in the event of a natural disaster.
    Bluey's cousin was right in the path of Cyclone Debbie. His house made it through without huge dmage. He did lose all his fences but they are replaceable. Town power and water were out for 2 weeks. He lives in the rural area but his daughter in town was unable to flush her toilet at all, as the sewerage system failed. We have based our plans on what Colin and his family went through.

    1. Dear Jane,
      I got to see the girls today just not cuddle. I did just want to pick them both up and cuddle!
      Your caravan is an ideal way to be able to leave well ahead of a direct hit of a cyclone. This is the beauty of the weather reports we get now..most times with a cyclone at least there is a fair amount of time to make such decisions. Better to go in good time if going. Having a relative that lived through this would give you a lot of very practical information which is good to have. Lets hope QLD has had its fair share for the year now! With love

  5. Dear Annabel and bluebirds, hello again!, I forgot to mention how sweet that is of Harper to help her mummy . She is growing fast , such a gorgeous little girl. Love BarbW ( again)

    1. Thanks Barb, I just love her so much! Both of them are just beautiful and so good. Harper is the most cooperative child and wants to do whatever you are doing! xxx

  6. Well Annabel, look at little Harper multi tasking already. Taking out the rubbish and mowing the lawn all at the same time. Haha. Glenda posts are very insightful and has got me thinking that I would be totally unprepared if anything was to happen. Love everybodies pictures. Those figs look delicious, I love figs but they are just so expensive to buy in shops, I wish I lived closer to Chloe she might share some of hers! Rachel's olives look great, I have 2 olive trees and this year they are laden with fruit but I have no clue what it takes to bottle them, I have heard it is quite a procedure to get them to bottling stage. Have a great week everyone. Love Jo Roberts

    1. Dear Jo, Figs are some crazy price here, first they were $1 EACH then got up to $2 each. Amazing. Anyway down on the farm there are several trees of them and two different types... some are deep purple and some are green on the outside but pink in the middle. So I get given quite a lot and Chloe learned to make fig jam and a few recipes. She puts them to good use. If you were anywhere near by we would be glad to share some with you!
      Tackle little steps like get all your vital documents in one area. Make a copy of all the numbers into a book, all the account numbers etc. I just photocopy everything from cards to drivers licence etc and have back up copies of everything. It starts to come together and boy you would be so glad even if you lost your purse you then have all the numbers etc to follow them up.
      Stay tuned as Rachel has written up how she did the olives! I will post this soon and she photographed a lot of the steps. She had what I call a crash course to learn as suddenly shad had olives! You should see how many she has done! So you might be doing this yourself soon! With love

    2. Be encouraged, Jo! The olives are not actually 'bottled', as in hot water bathed. I am simply using these preserving jars to keep the olives, which are sitting in salty water, with a layer of oil on top! That's a saving!

  7. Dear Glenda such a huge amount of information that will take time for me to digest. I do know that some people like to have all of their important documents scanned and on a stick in their 'go' stash. Love the idea of having a booklet with relevant information, contacts etc recorded in it - so much easier to up date.

    I would add a couple of items to the 'go bag' - two different types of hats - a beanie for the colder weather and a baseball cap for the warmer weather (that is unless you can get a scrunchable hat), a rain coat or a plastic poncho from the cheap shops (enough per person for the head wear and the raincoat/poncho) and some spare socks. Also a small microfibre towel, they do not take up a lot of room but handy for when you need to have a wash or need to dry yourself off.

    I found that when I took precooked food across to a family that was affected by the black saturday fires that taking the uncooked rice and pasta saved on space in the bar 'fridge they had use of. They had been put up in a granny flat.

    When we met them they were in the throws of having to deal with insurance/government agencies and the list went on. The precooked meals gave them a touch of home.

    Last week I did a shop at the Golden Circle Factory Outlet - spent my voucher that I had here, still trying to work out the prices of non discounted items because what I picked up isn't available in the regular supermarkets even though they are well known brands.

    Tomorrow I will see if my local IGA stocks .

    Some items I picked up worked out to save a few cents but then it all adds up. The small jar of marmalade that I picked up for my husband cost me $1- - supermarket price is $2-86.

    One thing I was thinking about this morning was when we make up the cleaner - we should really be costing that out and doing a comparison to the products it replaces and how much money we are saving there. I know cleaning products are really expensive. I shared the recipe with the lady I work my shop shift with. She is trying to get rid of the expensive cleaning products but hadn't found anything that would give a good clean.

    We have another public holiday here today - 4th short week in a row. Next week it will be strange for everyone to have a 5 day week.

    Annabel I love that photo of Harper. Hope that you are resting.

    Have a good week Blue Birds, I have a busy couple of days and then can rest on Friday.


  8. Annabel,

    All the spectacular putting-up and baking and picking images... and sweet little Helper Harper. What a blessing she is. Good training, thanks to mum, grandmum and great-grandmum, and don't forget auntie!

    As always, Glenda's advice is wise x 18. Thanks, Annabel, for passing her wisdom around.

    On Guam, where America's day begins

  9. Wisdom +++ from Glenda, and thankyou! Gorgeousness+++ from everyone else, particularly little Harper. What a little doll she Mimi

  10. Dear Annabel

    Fabulous post thank you to you for presenting it and Glenda for writing it. The one thing that is playing on my mind is photos. Of course when we were younger there was no "Cloud" and photos were printed and stored. I have 100s of photos in the house, that I would be so sad to lose and that no one has copies of. My aim is to scan each photo and save it on a portable hard drive. At the same time I would also scan some of the photos on to portable USB sticks for each of the children. This makes the photos doubly safe since I would have the master copy but each of the children would have a copy of the photos relevant to them. It is a work in progress. I have all my jewellery and a small amount of cash in one spot ready to grab should something go wrong

    All the gorgeous food stuff shown today is making me jealous, though I must say we enjoyed home grown eggplant cooked in garlic for dinner...yum yum yum

    Miss Harper is divine and Oh so beautiful. I am sure she is just a blessing to you all

    God Bless and look forward to your other posts of the week

  11. Hi Annabel and Beautiful Bluebirds!

    Thank you to Annabel and Glenda for the evacuation topic!! It is good to keep these ways of thinking alive in the everyday!

    It is wonderful to hear of Andy's new job! May he thrive in his work!!

    Chloe's world of figs is great!! Chooks, lambs, figs, .... I am wondering if that is old scales or an old conversion sign in the background of her photo!

    Jane's bread looks a bit like the opera house!

    Kelsey, since you are in true nesting mode, your baking must be lovely!!!!!!

    Teri, it is sweet to see Cookie's bread making coming to life in your kitchen!

    All up, it is lovely to see the beautiful work of Bluebirds I am getting to know!

    Enjoy a good week everyone!

    Rachel Holt

  12. Hi Annabel

    All those baked goods looke fanatastic. All you ladies are very clever to make such yummy looking things.

    Thanks for the preparedness blog-it's good to see you others live.
    Annabel sorry to hear you are unwell. I hope you can take the time the rest and recuperate.
    What a gorgeous little granddaughter you have. She must be a source of great joy to you and to your daughter-not to mention helpful with looking after her baby sister.



  13. Dear Annabel and Glenda,

    Thank you for this topic and useful information. While something we don't like to think about we must. One of the things we have done is to make copies of all of our important papers etc. and given copies to close family members in States other than ours.

    I was so delighted to hear about Andy's new job! Prayers answered!

    Seeing the pictures of everyone's work was beautiful! And little Harper, what a doll! So precious in every way.

    On a different note I made Kelley's peppermint creams this weekend. They are dangerously delicious and addictive. Something to add to our preparedness pantry(wink, wink). Wishing everyone a beautiful and productive week. Blessings, Cookie

  14. Annabel,
    Harper is such a cutie and I too just want to kiss and cuddle her! Congratulations to Andy on his new job that is wonderful to hear! Yay!!!
    Glenda- Thank you for all of the wonderful information you have shared it is important to know if we have to leave that we need to take things with us and not just head out. I have all of my important stuff in a small file box that we can just grab at a moment's notice.

    BlueBird ladies- all of your cooking looks so delicious that I can almost smell it all from here and my mouth is watering!Such kitchen talents!
    Rachel- do you know how much olives like yours cost here? Well they are a lot and yours are beautiful! maybe your next venture could be pressing olive oil?
    I hope everyone has a wonderful week I don't have much to add other than lots of work on the homefront!

    1. Vicky, I'm just wondering what to do with the pits! They're not toxic, and they give out more heat than hardwood! So there!!

  15. Dear Bluebirds,
    Thank you so much for all of your kind comments about the post. It is something that is hard to think about, as Annabel mentioned. Having all the information necessary to go forward, should a residence have to be evacuated, is truly a foundation saver.
    I appreciate each of you, your comments, and your additional thoughts on what is beneficial for all of us to be prepared. There is so much to consider these days of what might happen; worldwide, locally, and nationally.
    Barb, Annabel has my chat address :), so you are welcome to ask her for that if you would like. I can get pretty chatty (LOL).
    May God bless each of you and protect you and your families always.

  16. Annabel, I am hoping that this new week is finding you feeling much better. What wonderful news about Andy's job! My sourdough starter is doing well, though I think I missed a feed on Saturday, so I don't have as many bubbles as I had been having. I'm hoping that I've saved it and I've moved it to a warmer spot in the house, so hopefully this will help it as well.

    Thank you, Glenda, for the excellent information! Some of the areas around me in Missouri, really took a beating in rain over the weekend, with more expected over the next week, so I am definitely making notes on what you shared with us!

    Little Harper is such a beauty and I love it that she's helping her mum!

    I finished an afghan for my son for Christmas, so I will take photos this evening after I run in all my ends. I am now finishing up another pair of fingerless gloves and then going to start one of my crochet shrugs.

    Friday will find me accompanying a very special little guy in my life, my youngest daughter's boyfriend's youngest son, Dylan (I know, it's a mouthful! haha). He calls me "Grandma" and I'm just totally thrilled! We are heading to a local milk dairy with his preschool class and I understand that we get to try our hand at milking a cow! I'm game to try, but I'm not predicting any great success at it. I wish everyone a wonderful week!


  17. The food pictures are gorgeous Annabel and thank you Glenda for the information on evacuation. It's a big issue for me where I live - fire.

    I have two suitcases packed all year round which i go through regularly just to check and to look at the precious things packed up. I have a dog evacuation box also. There needs to be more thinking on food and shelter and your post has got me pondering.

    Annabel, Harper is just beautiful!!!!!

    Have a great week. Fi xx

  18. The banana bread look delicious. I was wondering if you might post the recipe? Cheryl

  19. Thank you Glenda for the valuable reminders! I know you will be blessed to know many of us plan to get prepared. I had a "bug out bag" for some time. But we moved and I need one for each family member.

    Thanks for sharing Harper's chore photo, Annabel. She is so adorable! I also appreciate the ladies' sharing their baking and preserves. I'm inspired.


  20. Glenda, you've covered some very important info here. The Record book is an excellent idea and so is booking a hotel room away from the disaster area. Thanks Glenda!

  21. Dear Annabel and Glenda, Another very informative post. I've recently up-dated our grab and go bags but still need a bit more food to add to it.

    Thank you for sharing my picture along with all the other lovely pictures! So inspiring!

    Annabel, Harper is simply gorgeous!! Such a good helper!! I'm so pleased Andy got the job!!! Hoping you are feeling better. Love, Teri


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