Every Day

The Things We Have Learned Because of This Virus

Those of you who have only kept a few days to a week of household cleaning products, water, and food in their homes have learned that you can’t do that. You always need to be prepared for an emergency. 

Our supermarkets, warehouse stores, and even Super Walmart only keep on average a 3 days supply in their stores. You saw what happened when people who had no stockpile went to the stores. They stripped everything. Many items have never really recovered. As soon as toilet paper or other necessities are put back on the shelves, they disappear again. It has caused the stores to put limits on items. It also has caused prices to go up because the demand is so high.

So those people who had a stockpile to last you for months were all set. Those people who didn’t went into panic mode. 

I know there are people who will say that they make so little that they can’t afford to stockpile. But anyone can spend $1.00 to $5.00 or more if you have it to stock up each week. Buy a few extra cans of things. Buy 2 or 3 bags of frozen veggies. After a number of months doing this, you will have a stockpile started. 

If you are paid working from home, you are not losing any money unless there is a chance that you will end up being furloughed after a while. So really think about spending the money the government is sending you to build a stockpile so that if this happens again or any emergency does, you will not be caught unprepared again. 

Even my sons have made fun of my stockpile over the years but guess who had to run out and buy food. Yup, one of them. Because they only bought a week’s worth of food, toilet paper etc. at a time. He couldn’t believe that he couldn’t find chicken or pork anywhere. Guess who was laughing then!    

This virus will eventually go away. I pray that will be sooner rather than later. However there is a good possibility that it will come back in the Fall or Winter. Get your stockpiles built so that you will be prepared!

I know some will say they are worried about doing that because they don’t want to waste food. If you spend the time to rotate(last in put in the back; pull your items from the front), you won’t waste anything. Arrange your freezers so that you are using the oldest first. I rarely find anything expired and even if I did, I realize that sell or best buy dates don’t mean much. Many things keep for a very long time.

That said, I found gaps in my stockpile. Things that I never thought about. So take the time while you are sitting home now to make a plan of what you need to get and where your gaps are. An example for us was Distilled Water. Hubby sleeps with a C Pap machine. I had just purchased 2 gallons of it when he opened that last gallon he had. That was just before the shelves got stripped. I never even gave a thought to buying more than that.

Well what happened is people, who found that the regular water had been depleted, purchased all the distilled water knowing they could drink it. It has been hard to find ever since. My sister told me her BIL couldn’t find it anywhere. People with these machines need distilled water. You can’t put anything else in them.  

I looked online quite a few places and couldn’t find it in stock. However, when I placed my Walmart pickup order, they had it, limit 2. I got those 2 because I can’t have Hubby run out and I don’t know how long this epidemic will last. You can bet that I will buy more than two when this is over.

I had many other gaps too. I will run out of Lysol wipes, paper towels, dish liquid and dishwasher tabs soon. I need to stock up on more frozen veggies. They can take the place of having to buy fresh every week or two. Many other items come to mind. The one thing that I had plenty of was meat. 

I pretty much know how much of things I use weekly and you most likely do too. So lets say you know that you use spaghetti sauce once a week. You want to stockpile for 6 months. So you would build your stockpile by buying 26 jars when you see a great sale or if you make homemade, buy the canned tomato and paste amount that you need. You can do this for every product you use. When you stockpile on sales, you don’t have to pay the price increases when something happens like this again.

I already have my list ready and will spend the money to fill in my gaps for the next time so that I don’t ever have to leave our home. 

So did you have gaps that you know you have to fill for the next time? Share with us what you ran short of.      

16 replies on “The Things We Have Learned Because of This Virus”

I had an inkling in early March and doubled my usual Amazon order for paper products, cleansers, and medicines. What has surprised me is realizing how much we relied on fresh fruit and vegetable: how much snack food bored teens eat, and that the stores will run out of eggs. I keep storage milk and flour on I was not worried about bread or milk; but we will definitely get chickens (were going to next year, but now are moving it up.)

Hi lonibelle,

That was smart thinking. I finally have flour thanks to some help. We love fresh veggies and fruits too but frozen is great to stock. I am not surprised those teens are snacking like crazy. Eggs has been an issue here too but fortunately I now have about 6 dozen. We eat a lot of eggs. Yeah on getting chickens.

I pretty much had everything I needed. However, I still follow sales and buy bogo, use coupons, and buy loss leaders. I have not run out of anything. I do not strip shelves. I had heard of the corona virus before it was big news and found tp on bogo, used a coupon and stocked up with two huge packages. I bought three gallons of milk before all this started, and I am still using it. It is special milk, so it might run out.

If I'd been more prepared, I would have stocked more baking supplies & meat (freezer). We have plenty (we were able to buy a large bag of flour at Costco, but it took some doing). For chicken, we still can't find it. We'll have to see if it comes back in stock.

I've always tried to keep "one extra" of everything we need, but it's become clear that's not enough. So, I'll try & do a better job projecting how many extra is reasonable. We don't tend to eat the same pantry items consistently, so it's a bit challenging to predict.

Hi H.P.,

Baking supplies is on my list, specifically a 25 lb. bag of flour which would last us a year. I guess chicken has really been an issue.

For me it was dried beans. I had about ten pounds on hand, but that wasn't enough to me. But there was already a shortage on dried beans before the pandemic hit due to the rains last year. So I will be stocking up on those when I am able to.

So far we are in good shape. There were some items, like sugar and brown sugar, that I have been going through more quickly as I am baking more (2 teen boys and one work from home husband…so lots of snacking going on here!). Was running short on paper towels, but found them in the linen closet. I am taking notes about how much food and cleaning items we are going through now. I thought I was well stocked before this happened but I am seeing that everyone being home means more cleaning (dishes, towels), more snacking, but less laundry overall. Need to re-evaluate what a 6 month supply looks like. We are lucky that we can still find many types of meat from Trader Joes. You have to wait in line to get in, but they are keeping their shelves fairly well stocked.

Hi AD, this is Chris. I thought this was a very good post, full of practical things to think about. We are doing ok on stock for the most part, but I will definitely start keeping more hand sanitizer, it is not something I usually kept? We did have some, but with hubby being in essential personnel, I can see I need to keep more, and also get him some wipes he can always keep in his car, this is something we hadn't thought of either. The other thing is I forgot to get my hair cut before they closed the salons. I have clippers to do hubby's hair so he will be ok.

Hi Chris,

Thanks. Yes, the hand sanitizer is important. I have always kept some in my car and in the house each winter and I was lucky enough to find some at Walmart about 6 weeks ago. We all wish we had gotten haircuts. Both Hubby and I are looking scraggly at the moment but we aren't going out except the yard so no one really sees us anyhow.

We live in the country. When we were first married, my mother-in-law taught me the wisdom in keeping a deep pantry. I always have at least one large package of Sam's club TP and paper towels on hand. We don't use disinfectant wipes. I usually have at least one or three travel size hand sanitizer around. I keep multiples of hand, body, laundry & dish soap on hand. Potatoes have been in short supply here. I've been able to get the 4 or 6 we want every other week. Flour has been scarce but again I keep that in stock. I have had to keep PPE supplies in stock for my workplace and finally had to put in a request for sanitizer and wipes with the local health department. I work for a plumbing/HVAC company and the techs need those things for their and our customers' safety. I hope to get the approval notice this week. We are out of paper towels at the office so I guess I'll have to go find hand towels and plan to wash them every week. 🙁

We have been trying to keep a good stockpile going and haven't run out of anything necessary. Although Diet Coke has been getting low several times with no sales… When hubs calls me from the store my standard answer has become "2 weeks worth". Started buying meat from Costco just to not have to buy so often. Picking a prescription? Get a pkg of ground beef, a bag of frozen veggies or a box of fish.

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