Ready, Set….Go!

It’s been an interesting couple of years. 2020 arrived and shocked us to our core. The world shut down and we’d never seen anything like it before. Food and commodity shortages were something we in America couldn’t have fathomed. But, we were in an unprecedented pandemic, so we were willing to give it a little leeway. If you couldn’t go to work, it was understandable that there would be some glitches in the system. 2021 arrived and we were hopeful that things would relax and get back to normal. Didn’t really happen. In fact, things got worse. Now we are halfway through 2022 , it’s hard to believe that we are still living in what seems like an alternate universe. Political agendas exercised at the expense of the people, inflation rates soaring, wars erupting, global food shortages and there is not one thing we can do about it. We just have to deal with the aftermath and hope, once again, that things will return to normal. 

Earlier this year, I shared some thoughts about going to the grocery store and the food shortages we were already experiencing. Since that time, unbelievably, it’s only gotten worse! If you are able to find a well stocked grocery store, count your lucky stars. I, personally, have found that I can rarely find what I need all in one trip. I frequently have to stop at multiple stores to assemble my grocery list. If you do find the things you are looking for, unfortunately, the cost is no where near what it used to be. Wait a week and you will find those prices have increased even more! But, it doesn’t just stop there. Read the news and you will see constant recalls on food items, fires burning down processing plants, and even crazy unexplained phenomena that takes out a herd of cows or other animals. It’s absolutely insane!

Now don’t get me wrong, I am not a doom and gloom kind of gal. In fact, despite the depressing things all around us, I am really hopeful for the future. But, I am also a realistic person. I like to take what’s going on in the world and see how I can practically do the best thing in the circumstances we are in. It’s made me think a lot about being prepared for any given situation.

I know from personal experience that not being prepared for things makes for a really rough time. And I know I don’t want that again.

I think a great way we can get prepared for a bad situation is to plan for it. If you anticipate a time where you may not have the means or product availability that you are used to, you can act now to be prepared later. How can you do this? You can do it a few ways. You can pick up extra cans of food each time you are at the grocery store. If you buy one extra item each trip, those items add up and you will have a small supply accumulating without even having to think about it. You can learn some new skills. Learn to garden. Learn to store the excess items from that garden for a later date. Last summer was my first foray into gardening. I do not have a green thumb. But, it was fun to experiment and see what I could grow and it’s quite rewarding to harvest the vegetables I planted. I definitely learned that I have a lot to learn and I’ve been able to get a little better this year at it. I also learned how do do a small amount of canning. There are definite advantages to learning how to do this and enjoy delicious and healthy foods year round.

If some disaster were to happen right now, and you hadn’t been able to go to the grocery store for fresh food, how would your family make out? Would you be ok? For how long? It’s a good thing to think about, because, as we’ve learned from the past couple of years, anything could happen and it’s not that far-fetched anymore. That’s why I think it is a great idea to plan for long-term. By that, I mean it’s a great idea to purchase foods that you can have stored in case of an emergency that won’t go bad quickly.

I love ReadyWise foods for this very reason.  ReadyWise is my go-to brand for quality and ease of storage. We tried out their products years ago and have been using them ever since. They are delicious. These freeze dried foods are nutritious and yummy, stored in very smart packaging to keep stored for 25 years! All you need to do is add water! I am a huge fan of their meals. Fruits, veggies, meats, you name it, they pretty much have it. Meals that every member of the family will happily eat like teriyaki rice, cheesy macaroni, and hearty tortilla soup, just to name a few that are included in a variety of assembled kits that all you have to do is purchase and store–keeping you ready at a moment’s notice for just about anything that could be thrown your way. Their quality is amazing and one I highly recommend to everyone. You can purchase buckets of vegetablesfruits, and even milk and eggs. They also have gluten-free food, if that is something important to your health. I love that there is a wide array of food for a balanced diet.

For adding to your pantry, I really like the idea of storing milk products to use for drinking, baking, and cooking. Having a supply of shelf-stable milk that can be stored long term (up to 20 years) is invaluable! I’ve seen milk at grocery stores recently as high as $7.00 a gallon, which I never thought I would see. Purchasing some of these Whey Milk Alternative buckets of powdered milk could make a huge difference for your family. They are super easy to use, just add water and mix to rehydrate, have 120 servings per bucket, and tastes really good! I know that dry milk gets a bad rap, but I think it tastes better than the regular milk. They even have chocolate milk as an option, too. Not a bad idea to have some of that around, too!

Speaking of sweets, in stressful times, it’s a great idea to have fun items stored. It does a lot for the psyche to have something to look forward to. Maybe some chocolate or hard candy is what your family likes. Those are great options for shorter term storage, for sure. But for something with a longer shelf-life (3 years), I love the new Simple Kitchen Sweet Treats. These freeze dried desserts like Old Fashioned Apple Crisp, Raspberries and Brownie Bites, Cookie Dough Bites, and Strawberry Yogurt Tarts are delicious and will be thoroughly enjoyed by your family. They are very easy to keep in your pantry to enjoy now or later. So yummy!

If you are able, assembling a variety of these products would help give your family some security in hard times. That peace of mind is priceless. I highly recommend ReadyWise foods and would encourage you to look into their website. They have an abundance of great products and information that will help you get started. If you are even hesitant to get a lot of products that you haven’t tried, you can try some sampler packs to get you started. I also really like to follow their social media for good ideas and news.

While it feels like everything happening in the world is completely out of our control, it is reassuring to know that some things are in our control. Being prepared, being able to help your family and friends in a crisis, is something completely in our control and something to consider looking into while we are able.

So here’s my challenge to you–go look at your pantry and evaluate exactly how you would do in an emergency, whether that be a natural disaster, loss of income, or just lack of food availability through the supply chain. Think of ways you can prepare now to help alleviate a possible difficult time ahead. Do a bit at a time as you are able and in a week, a month, or six months down the road, see where you are at again. Are you ready to accept? Then ready, set….go!

*product was received to facilitate a feature, all opinions are my own*

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