Simple & Easy – Emergency Preparedness
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As the winds of Hurricane Ike

As the winds of Hurricane Ike

Survival after the Storm

 

Comfort food. These two words invite memories of creamy mashed potatoes and roast beef at Sunday dinners, or a freshly-baked loaf of bread warming the house with its tempting aroma. But comfort food is rarely associated with emergency preparedness, and prophets don’t usually mention it when they counsel us to have food storage. We typically think our food storage kits should contain wheat buds that have to be ground, dried-out fruits, and powdered milk that tastes watered-down, no matter how it’s mixed. Though these food storage staples are necessary in our food storage kits, they are definitely not feel-good foods. Experience taught me that instead of the food storage kit staples, comfort foods—warm cookies, melt-in-your-mouth brownies, hot buttered popcorn—were actually the kind of foods my family and I wanted when we were faced with a real crisis.

 

Our crisis was Hurricane Ike, which caused widespread power outages throughout the Houston area. For nearly two weeks, my family and I couldn’t use our oven, our washer and dryer, our dishwasher, our refrigerator, or our air conditioner. My unexpected reaction to this shut down was that my mind fogged and depression set in. I wasn’t the only one with that deflated response. Members and non-members alike expressed feeling down, frustrated, and unproductive. As a result, people turned to whatever comfort food they could find. A few of us even admitted: if we gained weight, we didn’t care. We just had to make it through this power outage and come out on the other side with our sanity intact. We all wished our food storage kits contained packaged cookies and brownies, popcorn that didn’t have to be popped, and treats—anything to bring us the comfort we were seeking.

 

Another thing I learned from our hurricane disaster is that besides feel-good foods, our food storage kits should contain fresh batteries for the digital camera. After Ike finally swept out of the city, we went around taking pictures of the streets flooded with a foot of water, and of crushed trees that had lost the battle against the hurricane. Those pictures are priceless, especially since memories of the hurricane have dulled.

 

Food storage kits should also have a notebook so that families can write down the blessings that come during the crisis. For example, after Hurricane Ike, our water heater provided plenty of hot water, even without power. Plus we were safe, our house hadn’t received any damage, and we still had our vehicles to cool off in when we got really hot. We knew it was important to help our children see how blessed we’d been and take time to write those blessings down.

 

A hurricane doesn’t have to pound through to prove how much we need our food storage kits, the staples and comfort foods alike. Any kind of crisis illustrates the necessity of obeying the prophets’ counsel and having a storage of food.

 

Making comfort foods an essential part of our food storage kits will ease crisis situations so they become less painful and harrowing. And having supplies to chronicle those traumatic events will help us make it through to tell about them.

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