Prepping with Kids.

Packing for any outing changed drastically the day we brought a little bundle home from the hospital. I went from throwing two pairs of panties and a tshirt into a duffle to packing endless suitcases or totes of stuff for the kids.

Survival prep doesn’t seem to be any different.
boys in a suitcase
Kids need a lot of stuff. Beyond the necessities of food/water/shelter, making sure I have creature comforts for the boys saves MY sanity. I thought about all the things I have to have with me on a normal outing and expanded that into food storage/72-hour kits/long-term survival kits.

1. Specialty food – Babies need formula or milk. Toddlers need extra milk. Toddlers are picky eaters. I had to think beyond MREs and jerky. By keeping items in the food storage that we normally eat, I feel a little better knowing every meal in a disaster won’t be a disaster.

2. Specialty cups – The boys are old enough to drink out of any cup, but they prefer a tupperware cup with a colored straw and lid. By planning ahead I can have a few in the storage to prevent a possible meltdown. If you have babies, think through how many nipples/bottle liners you’ll need to have on hand for an extended period of time.

3. Diapers/Pullups – Not only are the actual diapers/pullups a factor, but disposal. Even wet diapers will get extremely pungent after a while. In the house I’m relying on the diaper genie less, and using the outside trash can, so I moved the genie to the food storage and put clean/extra diapers and pullups in there. Since sizing is an issue, I rotate them as a size change occurs.

4. Wipes Every prep/bug-out will benefit from wipes – especially Costco’s Kirkland brand – but they’re a MUST MUST have for any situation involving kids.

5. Woobies/Special Friends – If you’re old enough to remember the movie Mr. Mom, you know how critical a woobie can be to a little one. The boys would go INSANE without their lovey blankets. Once they picked their woobies, I cut them in half, and have a spare stuffed in the bug-outs. Wow, I don’t even want to THINK about what survival would be like without their woobies. They also have fav stuffed animals, and I’m on the lookout for extras. Probably would have been a good idea to buy a duplicate in the beginning…

6. Clothes – Kids grow fast, and trying to plan ahead for clothing needs is a challenge. Will their growth spurt happen during the summer? Will their winter clothes still fit? I have one extra outfit in a larger size in the bug-out kits and rotate them when I purge the closets. I always have winter bibs/coats/boots in a separate bug-out kit to grab.

7. Activities – Kids get bored easily. While mine are pretty content with dirt and rocks, I did carve out some space in the food storage bunker for guaranteed quiet-time activities. A few coloring books, a favorite collection of stories, scissors, and a handful of matchbox cars didn’t take up much space, but will offer hours of playtime and allow the boys to blow off some steam.

A disaster situation is stressful for all of us, but I think the kids are extra susceptible because they’re attuned to our feelings and can tell when we’re upset. Taking must-have items out of the equation can make a stressful situation a bit easier on the kids, and infuse a bit of normalcy in a disaster situation.

What are the must-have items for your kids? Do you have extras stored? What’s your plan for a bug-out if you don’t have a spare one?

Grace and Peace,

Jen