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, 1 October 2017

Pantries and Preparedness. A printed copy.

We are in spring and just starting to think about preparing for summer. Many parts of Australia have had really high temperatures already which is very early.  So I am starting to worry this could be a hot summer.   Last summer featured quite a few blackouts.  No air-conditioning on days that are 44 (111) and nights that often stay above 30 (86) is not my idea of fun.   We have a generator and have practised a lot of things so that we can hopefully keep our fridge and freezer cold and at least one room in the house reasonable.  Something I have been working on now is having the information I need printed.  I realised, for instance,  that my recipe for homemade electrolytes was on the computer. mmm....  so this was the first thing I printed out so it is on hand, along with the ingredients I need.

Jess has a series in which important information is printed and goes into a folder so I began with this...

The Time to Come Preparedness Series.  I printed out my cover page and started a folder.

My electrolytes recipe was the first thing to go in!

Now I am working on printing anything else that is information I might need when the power is out. It is worth thinking about first aid instructions,  recipes, heatstroke and medial information and anything that you might reach for only to realise it is on the internet! 

The last power outages made me realise that I needed to increase my reading matter and things to do.  I often now print things that I think "I must read this when I get time" and have quite a few of these.

Years ago I experienced serious "not printing it" regrets  when Laine's Letters disappeared from the internet. Many times I had thought I must make copies and I didn't!  I was really upset.  So anything you truly treasure do copy!  Eventually I found the wayback machine copies and now have each and every letter in print.  This is great reading when the power is out.

Most of my recipes are in books and folders.  I have been trying to write out any that are not and also put the most used ones on the inside of my cupboard doors...

I need to get some more of these done.

Also I have my emergency plans written up and a heatwave plan that is written and also inside a cupboard door.   
Other things to always keep a copy of are all documents, licence and account numbers, phone numbers etc.  It is amazing how many people don't know phone numbers if they lose their mobile phone!  
I keep photos printed to as "the cloud" is not my idea of secure and memory sticks should be called "short term memory sticks" as they only last a few years!  

When we are busy and everything is ok it is really easy not to notice that if the power was out we can't consult our first aid app and Google what we might need!   Our battery charge is only going to last so long.  Even in a simple computer glitch or virus all our medical records could be lost.  I noticed at the Doctors and the Chemist is it all on the computer. Unless you have written down the drugs and dosages that your family takes all this information could be lost.  
I have some notebooks I keep with all the kind of information. 
On that note, in a power outage or without printed copies you cannot even prove you have a bank account let alone access it.   So physical money is all you have at these times. This is IF you can find a shop still open as most of ours just shut once the power went out. 
Once the power is gone for even a couple of hours what you have in the house is all you have!  There is nothing to buy.  It all sold out in the first few minutes before the shops shut their doors.   

So you can see why I am trying to think ahead! 
Our state suffered fairly severe electricity shortages last summer and we did not have a heatwave. WITH a heatwave I am not sure what to expect.  They knocked down power stations and now in a panic they are installing a large lithium battery that is not functioning yet.  But it is only big enough to power a few thousand homes.   They are also setting up a line of giant diesel generators for emergencies.  We don't know if these things will fix the situation or not!  I'm not counting on it!  To add further worry we used to import power from our neighbour state Victoria.  But they also knocked down one of their larger power stations and now they are unlikely to have spare power and now face the same issues themselves. 

We all have to assess what we need to be ready for in our own locations.  Having things you need printed is one thing to keep up on as so many things can cause a blackout or an internet glitch! 

What are your more immediate reasons to be well prepared and how do you go about it?  
Do you have information that really should be printed out so it is available when your devises are not working?

Have a good new week!  Today is a public holiday for us and is sunny and lovely! xxx


  1. Good advice Annabel, I too am printing important/useful things out and binding them up into booklets. This allows me to study them at my leisure and not chew up internet time, and also when things start failing for whatever reason, I have my 'security blankets' on hand :)

  2. Your power situation is very disconcerting. I congratulate you on your wise thinking and planning ahead. I have seen discussion about battery powered fans here after the hurricane power outages but I do not know if they are available to you there. Hopefully so!

  3. Hi Annabel and what a wonderful preparedness post thank you :) and hello beautiful bluebirds.

    What a timely post as we are having severe weather warnings here for both today and tomorrow including today severe storms with rains expecting 130 - 180mm and tomorrow a similar forecast for thunderstorms as well. We are expecting we may loose power so are planning ahead for such an event and as yet we have no generator.

    I have been practicing as I find a recipe on the internet to print it out immediately and keep it in a folder in the kitchen so all of our recipes are kept that way as well as having hard copy books on hand with lots of other recipes in them too. Ours are kept in not such a stylish manner as yours on cards but instead printed out and put in a clip top plastic bag we saved from buying new shirts for DH. We have around 3 of them and my plan is to put them into categories in the different ones I have.

    We have all of our bank account numbers in a little folder that the bank gave us. All of our first aid booklets I have printed out and put in an A4 display folder near our first aid kit which is in a large toolbox.

    Onto our preparations for upcoming weather coming in during the day today, here is what we are doing -

    - I am currently charging up the mobile phone on my laptop so it has full charge and we are also charging up our laptops so they will be at full battery power as well.
    - We charged up all of our solar lanterns yesterday so we have 5 on full battery power we can use in a blackout if that happens. We can also charge them both on our laptops having bought a 10 in 1 adaptor plug, and through the car DC charger as well at a pinch. Also available for light is 3 large pillar candles, and battery powered torches large and mini too.
    - DH is about to put on a loaf of bread in the bread making machine so if we get a power blackout we can live on sandwiches for the next few days, tinned items from the pantries, cook a stew on the slow combustion fireplace, or we can use our BBQ for cooking as we have 2 x 9kg gas bottles in reserve.
    - In the garden we are about to harvest all our ripe turnips and broad beans and blanch and freeze them shortly too in case the gardens get knocked out or damaged. We can and have had mini tornadoes here and live on a mountain plateau which is really exposed to the elements.

    Shall go and get a few preparations done and let you all know how we fare over the next 2 days. Have a fantastic week ahead everyone.


    1. Hello Annabel and beautiful bluebirds.

      Just reporting in that fared well from the severe weather and didn't get as much rain as they had predicted instead getting 19.34mm of much needed rain over 2 days which almost filled up the 2 x 1100lt rainwater tanks and the power stayed on.

      It doesn't hurt to be prepared anyway and we got in a lot of ripe garden produce and preserved it too.


    2. I am so happy you did well in the storm.It never hurts to be prepared. I was going to tell you how sweet that you took in the kitten. My daughter wanted a kitten when she was young. Her allergy doctor that gave her shot knew she was allergic. Told us get the kitten.Let it be in the house. Do not let it in her bedroom and she will build up
      immunity like allergy shots. We did that swept and
      mopped a lot brushed the kitten and today her cat allergy is completly gone. She has a kitty that can sleep on her bed no more allergy. Not sure if this will help you but just thought I would share and say it was sweet that you took the kitten in.

    3. Hi Patti and thank you for the tips on allergies and thanks for your kind thoughts of us making it through well in the storm :).

      Yes it is called desensitising and works in a lot of cases with those with allergies. I do know that you can get injections also for severe allergies as well. So far I am doing better than I have been in the past with the cat fur and have been brushing the cat regularly and keeping her out of the bedroom. She does come in and lies on a towel near my lounge room chair at night for a few hours before both us and her go to bed and so far touch wood I haven't had to take my allergy medications.


  4. We rely on power and indeed the internet so much that this post is a timely reminder to update and get ready for any eventuality this coming summer. My big w9rry is fire, more than loss of power and it was only yesterday that I was updating mybug out bag. It’s a huge red canvas bag I got from the CFA and I’m enjoying knowing I have copies of insurances, rates etc etc in there as well as first aid, bottles of water and so on. Now to update the car.... out come the woollen blankets again. Great post Annabel. Thanks. Fi xx

  5. We have had blessed rain all day. In just the last half hour the storm is picking up in intensity. I have the torches sorted and ready to access if needed. The kettle has been pulled out of the cupboard and given a good clean. We have received a warning of possible tornado/water spout potential. We are as ready as we can be. If power goes out tonight we will be fine. I just want the rain to keep on coming down. I'll pass on the waterspout.
    I have been printing off and organising my favourite sewing and crocheting patterns. I had not long realised that all of these were on the computer and if this went down I had nothing. My favourite recipes are already written out and in their new album. I have spare cards in the back of the album ready to write out any new recipes.
    Life is good.

    1. Dear Jane, I saw on HSC that up north has tornados and water spouts! I hope you just got more rain without any of that! You are well ahead on the recipes written up. I hope you have a really good new week and are feeling good now! With love

  6. Very good advice! I adore your blog. :)


  7. Dear Annabel and Beautiful Bluebirds!!

    The pictures are beautiful, and the topic so relevant!

    My good news is that it is raining beautiful rain here!! The gutters were cleared yesterday, and we love to watch the window where we can see water flowing into one of our tanks! For us, micro-managing water and preparing for rain is an important topic, since we live off rain water, and it can be a long time between drinks for the ground here!! That was our most immediate concern, although the pests and weeds don't thrive in the dry, either!! Ha ha!!

    My previous recipe collection is printed, and in a folder of display leaves. The recipes collected since then are just waiting for me to handwrite them into a folder for the kitchen! Consolidation and simplification are my preparedness themes!!
    I think about writing recipes in permanent ink onto fabric -- on the back of an apron or quilt, maybe? The most precious things can be stitched! Mmmmm, a thought bubble just appeared!! Ha ha!! I will have to make it before I tell you!!

    Rachel Holt

    1. Dear Rachel, I think you just came up with a beautiful gift idea! I saw when you stitched a scripture and your writing and stitching was BEAUTIFUL.
      Water is number one! I love the fact that you have rain and hopefully full tanks buy now. When I lived on rainwater once the tanks were full we would run around filing all kinds of containers with water! And do loads of washing etc! Very happy! With love

  8. Very good advice. I have a homemaking binder, but I realize now I can add so much more to it. Especially with the prescriptions and medical information. I can hardly remember it all on a good day, I can't imagine if things were stressful and tense.

    1. MamaHen, I agree, doses and complicated names and strengths etc... hard to remember! I keep adding to my binder so it is steadily growing! With love

  9. Great advice for all. This is something we all need to think about. We don't have blackouts like you, but one never knows when the grid could go down due to circumstances beyond our control.
    Much to think about. THANK YOU

  10. We are fortunate enough to live in a place that doesn't have weather extremes, so our preparedness revolves more around sudden loss of income or sudden big expenses. For us, that looks like paying bills the second they come in, full pantry, making sure everyone has clothes for the next season before they need them, and being frugal so we can save, save, save. I like the idea of printing out and making booklets, because internet is one of our biggest expenses and would be one of the first things to go.

    Have a great week everyone!

    1. Dear Sarah, It is a shock how dependent we are on the internet! When the power is out I still go to use the internet automatically! I also consider the power grid very vulnerable now to being hacked... it has happened several places now which is a worry. Sudden loss of income is a really use thing to be prepared for! Can happen to absolutely anyone! With love

  11. Dear Annabel,
    Excellent information.
    It's truly an insane world right now and no one can predict what might happen. Preparedness reduces stress immensely.
    Love and hugs,

  12. Dear Annabel, I think for you, it's been a case of learning by experience! This is great advice, and how often have we been caught out thinking 'I'll just google that', only to realise there's no internet, not just due to power outage, but due to malfunctions of one kind or another. Thankyou. I love your thinking! Mimi xxx

  13. Just lovely as always Annabel. I have an old Better Homes and Gardens cook book (circa 1960) that has many basic recipes in it.I also have my family cookbook that my step mom
    made for me and I have added to over the years. Mine are not so lovely as the ones shown but are handy. Annabel do you have an evaporator cooler they also call them swamp coolers. We use to have one when we were in the desert. They only work when it is dry not humid. They do not pull a lot of power and you might be able to run it when the grid is down. There are even plans on you tube. It basicly is a box with a pan of water and a pump in the bottom that pumps water over pads and a small fan blows the cool air out. That has been cooled by the water. I hope you do not loose power this summer. We also had misters like a tiny sprinkler system that sprays a fine mist out of these little tiny valves that run across the front top of the porch and it really cools it down. Not sure if that makes sense. You just turn on the water faucet on no electric required.


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