Hope everyone had a great summer!

Kitty front viewI had to take the summer off due to an unexpected family emergency that happened Memorial Day Weekend and consumed our entire summer. We are making it through the best we can, and one thing that made the tragic events slightly more bearable is the fact that I had a very appropriate stockpile of items to rely on. I rarely had to venture out to shop in June, July, or the beginning of August. We had more than enough tissues, toilet paper, trash bags, allergy medicine, band-aids, sunscreen, soap, shampoo, and batteries to live comfortably daily without having the extra pressure of planning a shopping trip. We also had enough frozen and dry food that I only had to dash into a store a few times for eggs, milk or bread. Not having the time or the mental energy to plan elaborate shopping trips or try to scramble around incomplete meals, I was glad I had been fine-tuning my stockpile and planning since the last serious emergency back at the beginning of 2013. We didn’t have to spend money paying full price for our regular living and food supplies during this difficult time.
The point is, an emergency can be anything. For some families, it might be intermittent job loss or a family member with an illness, a sudden loss of a vehicle, an incapacitating injury, an out-of-town relative who suddenly needs help, or a close friend or relative that unexpectedly needs to move in with you. Demands on your time and finances that happen suddenly can change your day to day life, and I can tell you from experience, just having a decent stockpile of your most-used items will ease your burden.
If you have to start small, just save your receipts over time and keep track of your top 10 purchases. Might be baby supplies, pet food, or just basic paper goods. If you feel overwhelmed about stockpiling EVERYTHING, then don’t. Just pick the top 10 things that would be the biggest pain to run out of. Typically, that might be some combination of toilet paper, dish soap, shampoo, diapers, canned cat food, spaghetti, contact lens solution, breakfast cereal, toothpaste, cough medicine, you get the idea. It’s different for everyone. If you just have a standard list of your MOST used items, start with that, and pick extras of those up as you do your regular shopping. Buy them only at the lowest price – BOGO, or with a coupon, whatever works for you. Then, when something suddenly happens … and there’s no telling what that might be or when it will happen … you’ll at least have less pressure on you and your family will be more able to deal with the problems.

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