If you don't stockpile for disasters why? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums
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The Mindful Home > If you don't stockpile for disasters why?
flapjack's Avatar flapjack 07:09 AM 09-30-2008
Because the greatest risk that we face here is from flooding, and if the disaster hits then it's all gone. I also think that if an area has been hit by a natural disaster (like Oxfordshire and Gloucestershire in the floods over here last summer) then we owe it to support our local businesses as soon as they are able to open again.
But then we don't get many hurricanes around here.

sunnysandiegan's Avatar sunnysandiegan 04:24 AM 10-01-2008
Depends on your definition of stockpiling, of course. We keep our pantry and fridge and freezer loosely full and we do not store food elsewhere. We have a family of three and can live for awhile with what we have on hand at most points in time.

Last Fall, we moved out for home improvement projects to take place. We ate out of our pantry/freezer/fridge for a month prior to the move and made some freezer meals with the supplies, too, for the three weeks we lived at my dad's, which is a two-minute walk away.

We generally buy consumables (certain food, household items, etc) when the price is right and adjust our purchases and menus, etc to fit those within reason. We live in an area where we can easily walk to two large grocery stores and two farmer's markets and restaurants, etc.

Our weather is mild and our biggest natural threat is wildfire. Wildfires have occurred twice in the past few years and evacuation is a bigger issue in terms of preparation. Owning less and being less attached to those items is far better for our family. We were out of town during the first wildfire and our community was evacuated. There wasn't anything we could do and we quickly discovered what was most important to us. Our home was spared and we are grateful. Since then, we have moved those items (scrapbooks and photo albums) to be easier to grab by anyone and we've actively improved our neighborly relations (we know everyone within sight of our front and back doors) and our computer backup situations (DH's work and out of state). We got to practice again last year and aside from some fine-tuning, we feel as prepared as one can be.

As I stated on the other thread with a similar topic, the writing has been on the wall for our country's current financial challenge for awhile. Aside from adjusting the types of financial risks we're taking, we haven't changed anything else in the way we live. We trust in the abundance all around us.

Someone upthread or perhaps in the other thread mentioned the media. I have only gone through short spurts of being a moderate TV watcher. (I generally watch very little, if any, TV.) Around 9/11 was one of them and as I proofread my other response, I realized that I was far more anxious than usual (for me) during that time frame. Part of that was being a new mother, but I think the nonstop TV/radio habit "to keep informed" made things worse. I was being inundated with doom and gloom messages. I also watched TV a lot during both wildfires and I felt out-of-sorts more than would be typical for me. (I am generally calm in crises.) I have purposely avoided seeing or listening to any news media about the current crisis and I feel calm and optimistic. That isn't to say I am ignoring it, by any means. It just means I am more selective about my information sources. I was on a conference call regarding this very topic this morning. I knew the two speakers would be proactive and speak from knowledge, not fear or doom and gloom perspectives. It helps to surround myself with these types of people during tough times, well really ALL times.
slsurface's Avatar slsurface 03:10 PM 10-01-2008
Thanks, OP, for getting this thread started. I am curious too.

Originally Posted by fek&fuzz View Post
Because I don't believe the world is going to end. Or even that life as we know it will end. or even that the supply of toilet paper will end.

Because I think the hype and fear, and the actions that are based in fear, cause a lot of problems, beyond the real ones that might exist.

Because I think we manifest our realty to some extent, and i don't want to manifest a reality where I'm shooting you because you want to borrow some coffee and sugar and toilet paper.

Remember in The Long Winter when some of the boys were stockpiling seed grain and had built a fake wall in their house so no one would know? And they weren't sharing with the town folk who were going hungry until Pa went over and made them share and then a bunch of the men rode through the storm to get more grain for seed to share with the whole town? Well, I liked Pa a whole lot better than the stock pilers in that book.
I COMPLETELY agree! The 700 point drop in the market on Monday was all fear-driven . Plus it's economics 101: By hording, we drive up the demand for products, which in turn increases cost. This is why I refuse to horde gasoline (I heard a commentator on NPR the other day say that the gas distribution system in the US was never built to insure that ALL Americans had a full tank of gas in their cars). So we do ourselves a disfavor by stockpiling beyond a sense of "normal" preparedness (for disasters or bad weather, etc...).

Originally Posted by purplegirl View Post
Naw, I am right there with you. I simply don't believe the sky is falling, even with the current crisis. I think things might get tough, but I have complete faith in the universe that it will all work out. I have enough anxiety and don't need to add any thing else on my plate to worry about.

Originally Posted by Malva View Post
I don't stockpile for catastrophes or disasters.

I do it because it allows me to eat local food year round, get good deals on bulk items and not need to run out to the store cause I'm out of chocolate. It also makes it cheaper to eat organic food.
I've been trying to take advantage of buying organic staples (flour, oatmeal, etc) for baking in bulk for just this reason. The difficult part for me is #1 space and #2 getting together enough money for the bulk purchase (even though I know I'll be saving money in the long-run).

Originally Posted by Garden~Lover View Post
I do however have at least 1 extra week of food on hand in case I cant afford to do grocery shopping for what ever reason. I live so close to everything I could walk there.
if something is a decent price I will generally buy 3-4 not 50. I do not have the space for something like that.
Yes, this is me too. At any given time, there are ingredients for me to prepare probably 2 weeks worth of meals in my pantry. But I also consciously chose a house within walking distance of a grocery, hardware, craft store , convenience store, and right along a major bus line (if I ever needed to ditch our cars).
audsma's Avatar audsma 04:24 PM 10-01-2008
We used to stockpile for frequent floods and power outages when we lived on a road which flooded at 6 inches above flood stage, many times a year, but now we've just stockpiled for post partum meals.

I know people who have 6 years worth of toilet paper, but we don't. As someone who was told that Armageddon was going to happen on my 21st birthday (a coincidence-- I have to believe that my parents weren't just trying to stop me from drinking) I just don't take many things that seriously.

But, like a pp, I have 25 lbs. of rice b/c it was local and organic, and a great deal. When it's about eating locally, I stockpile at great prices. I'd love to root cellar, use my dehydrator, and can in addition to freezing only because I am much happier when I don't have to go to the grocery store. That said, there's no way I'm getting a second freezer.
inkedmamajama's Avatar inkedmamajama 04:29 PM 10-01-2008
i cant even afford to stockpile, though i would love to have a thorough list-not because of the bailout sit. though, just because i think it would be good to stockpile food water, meds, toiletries, fuel, etc.

though you DO have to rotate your stockpile.
Astrogirl's Avatar Astrogirl 04:31 PM 10-01-2008
I honestly can't think of a reason to stockpile. I just can't see anything happening where I live that would require it. I live in a tiny rural european town and probably the biggest thing that could happen here, is flooding.

Our chalet in switzerland is stockpiled - in case we get snowed in.
Masel's Avatar Masel 06:24 PM 10-01-2008
I havn't been one to stockpile but between this thread, a similar one on another board and a recent conversation with a friend in the Zombie Squad (it's not all about the zombies, really) I realized I should have a little more nonperishable food on hand. It didn't help that the creek between me and the grocery store seriously flood from the remnants of hurricane Ike a couple weeks ago. We're at the top of the hill but would be cut off from a lot if the water couldn't go down quickly.

My philosophy is that the society will not go out with a bang but with a wimper or rather years of succeedingly louder wimpers. The best I can do in my little house is to get us through localized natural disasters. I don't have rooms for stockpiling mass quantities of paper goods for instance.

I am quite sure however that those three cans of green beans (I should have something green and veggie-like I thought) will go into some canned good collection drive next year.
emcare's Avatar emcare 06:29 PM 10-01-2008
I don't stock pile because we cannot afford to. I have a thing for "saving" things so if we could I'm sure we'd be set for a good long winter storm.
Smokering's Avatar Smokering 09:47 PM 10-01-2008
Yeah; basically, because we're broke. If I had money to be spending on Future Food I'd be spending it on tomorrow's dinner! I'm trying to grow lots of veggies this summer, and that's about as foresighted as I've gotten.
choli's Avatar choli 09:54 PM 10-01-2008
Originally Posted by fek&fuzz View Post
Because I don't believe the world is going to end. Or even that life as we know it will end. or even that the supply of toilet paper will end.

Because I think the hype and fear, and the actions that are based in fear, cause a lot of problems, beyond the real ones that might exist.

Because I think we manifest our realty to some extent, and i don't want to manifest a reality where I'm shooting you because you want to borrow some coffee and sugar and toilet paper.

That's an excellent point. Rather than starting to stockpile, I will increase my food bank donations. Better karma.
fek&fuzz's Avatar fek&fuzz 10:01 PM 10-01-2008
Originally Posted by choli View Post
That's an excellent point. Rather than starting to stockpile, I will increase my food bank donations. Better karma.

wendyland's Avatar wendyland 12:03 AM 10-02-2008
We can't afford to stockpile, plus I'm too lazy to rotate stuff. We'd probably have enough in our pantry to last us a couple months. My husband has a great knowledge of local edibles and survival skills. He has purposefully gone into the woods with no food just to forage and see how long he can make it.

This thread has gotten me to think that maybe I should have some things on hand. Like toilet paper, although we do get a phone book practically every other week. I've already been thinking about having some extra bottles of spirulina on hand so that we have good nutrition if anything happened.
lanamommyphd07's Avatar lanamommyphd07 12:56 AM 10-02-2008
well, I picked this coming year to compact and eat locally, and even though "stockpiling-type items" don't really count, I'm pretty minimalist anyway and overstocked pantries give me the heebs. Even though that's the case, there's probably enough stuff in jars right now to go a few weeks at least.
I have been thinking about my coffee/chocolate/cigarette/bailey's stash though. But of course those are luxury items and if the fit hit the shan I'd probably need to quit all that anyway (or of course stockpile coffee and trade it--but I hear it goes bad quickly -- I wouldn't know. I never have it long enough to find out). I've been more mindful about wasting things lately--groceries really have gone up a lot. I haven't been hitting the fresh produce much.
I suppose since we're thinking of moving soon, I'm in the "get rid of it" mode as well. Maybe at the future location I'll want a full cellar. who knows?
hibana's Avatar hibana 03:35 AM 10-02-2008
I refuse to participate in the fear that drives many people to stockpile. I am not worried about societal meltdown, collapse of the food supply, etc. Worrying about those things distracts one from the business of living.

I do worry about not having cheese, booze, etc when the need arises. So I have lots of cheese in my fridge, and dh is supposed to keep the wine rack full. Problem is, we keep drinking the stuff...
Mama Dragon's Avatar Mama Dragon 01:09 PM 10-02-2008
I don't stockpile for the end of the world, but at any time an earthquake or whatever could hit and we be without power or safe roads to travel, so it makes sense to have *some* stored food. Just not an entire bunker full
veryerin's Avatar veryerin 01:20 PM 10-02-2008
We are moving in two months, so no, not stockpiling. I am doing the opposite of it, actually. If we weren't moving, I would keep a pantry of staples.
oneKnight's Avatar oneKnight 01:59 PM 10-02-2008
I don't stockpile, mostly beause I don't have the room or the money.

Poor people like me keep on surviving.
lleegle69's Avatar lleegle69 12:02 AM 10-03-2008
Call me paranoid...(you won't be the first...heh)...
But assume this

Gas is deplete.....or non-existent...in your area....
(Presently there is NO GAS in "small-town-Alabama...."...where I live...)

Assume that there is limited gas available in surrounding cities...
(Atlanta....has almost none...)

If there is no gas....there is no means by which to bring food ....to the area..

Hooterville....(my hometown).... had a 30 cent increase in gas prices over night....
You would have been AMAZED at the mass hysteria....
People ramming past each other to get in line and pay $3.99 for a gallon of gas...

our grocery....
supplier of gas,...
oil, ...
and cheap haircuts...
was empty from shelf to shelf....
(Keep in mind , however....that in the south...we empty shelves at the mere MENTION of bad weather....
even if the weather report is in regard to other cities....
other states...
HELL...other countries....)

My point..and I do have one....is that I do not think we should "panic"
and begin stockpiling food and "weapons of mass destruction"
I also do not believe that we should sit back...and wait for the other shoe to drop....(yes...the first shoe has hit the pavement....)
We are not immune to a collapsed economy....

I think that our country has become complacent....believing that "this will never happen here"...
Consider for a moment....that it DOES happen...

If you wake up tomorrow and your bank is closed....CLOSED...
If there is a rush....for gas....food...money...
Are you even slightly prepared?

Have you ever even imagined...
one day
without toilet paper?

I was a girlscout....
our motto...was
"Always be prepared"

Just a thought....
Are you?
Sierra's Avatar Sierra 02:20 AM 10-03-2008
"Natural disasters" have certainly happened in the location where I am living now, so I think it wouldn't be a bad idea to have a few gallons of water on hand, flashlights and batteries, and a well-stocked otherwise unused first aid kit. The Red Cross has a few ideas: http://www.redcross.org/services/pre...0_239_,00.html. If I lived somewhere with no history of hurricanes, etc. I probably wouldn't be as interested. Plus, when I was living on the other coast, after a storm once our power was out for over a week one winter(!), and it was miserable so I want to be more prepared if that ever happens again.

I do not have a stockpile. I do try to buy non-perishable food goods when they are on sale to keep the pantry fairly well-stocked, but we often end up eating these things when money is tight right before I get paid. However, latey I have been thinking more and more that I need to figure out a way to make sure we will have food in an economic or natural diaster or fossil fuel crisis emergency. I am really worried about economics right now because I am feeling the national crisis somewhat personally. If I ever have a spare few dollars in my grocery money, I am going to start up with more sale-based food shopping for emergencies because there is a chance we will go through a period when many of us can't afford food. If nothing else, it will be purchased at lower prices than probably what we'll see a few months from now, so perhaps in a few months we'll reap the benefits. Food prices are supposed to continue to rise at an incredible rate.
choli's Avatar choli 12:59 PM 10-03-2008
Originally Posted by lleegle69 View Post

Have you ever even imagined...
one day
without toilet paper?

I was a girlscout....
our motto...was
"Always be prepared"

Just a thought....
Are you?
I have survived far greater hardships than a day without toilet paper. I am adaptable and creative enough to get through whatever life throws at me.
WeasleyMum's Avatar WeasleyMum 01:52 PM 10-03-2008
Originally Posted by milletpuff View Post
I applaud anyone with the self-discipline to stockpile chocolate and wine and leave it there till the disaster comes
I can't stockpile anything like chocolate, because it gets eaten RIGHT AWAY. I tried once a few months ago with Ben&Jerry's, it went on sale for just a few dollars a pint! Way cheaper than usual. So I bought several pints, thinking I'd have a freezer stash... Yeah right. I ate that icecream in less time than one could imagine.

In general I don't stockpile much, first because I'm pretty disorganized-- my household is chaotic and there are many things that need adressing. I'm doing well just to have enough groceries in the house to make dinner, I don't plan ahead very well. Second, I'm pretty new to these ideas of the End of Oil, the Long Emergency, whatever you want to call it, the EOTWAWKI. I only kind of stumbled across all that over the summer, and I'm still in the processing stage, not the OMG MUST PLANT WHEAT IN THE FRONT YARD SO WE DON'T STARVE stage.

I am starting to make a few changes, more for general comfort than anything else. After running out of toilet paper a fair few times, I try to stay 2-3 12-packs ahead of that scenario-- also can buy it on sale that way. I'm starting to always have enough jarred spaghetti sauce and dried pasta to be several meals ahead, my freezer is full (mostly meats, veggies, and homemade meals), but I'm nowhere near what anybody would call "all stocked up".

To answer some PP's ideas that it's "bad karma" to be well-supplied, or that it somehow indicates a bad outlook: I don't get it. I mean, let's take something like toilet paper. If I have a one-month supply of the stuff waiting in my laundry room (that I replenish religiously as it gets used up), how does that make bad karma? Now let's say that EVERYBODY on my street-- no, in my city-- has a backup supply of toilet paper. Is that somehow bad for the town's mentality, our outlook? I don't see it. I think that could be applied to most things. Having a freezer/fridge/pantry full of food, a tank full of gas, a closet full of quilts or blankets, these things don't spell bad karma or a doom-and-gloom mentality to me. I'd personally, probably, feel more relaxed knowing that I was just that much more prepared for whatever life chucks our way. Kind of like having that savings account at the bank (the what-if-we-lose-our-jobs-and-can't-pay-the-mortgage! account), except in food, paper goods, or whatever.

I mean yeah, as Choli just said, we are adaptable and flexible-- if we had to go a day without TP we'd survive. But why not plan ahead a bit instead, so that maybe we didn't have to?
choli's Avatar choli 05:00 PM 10-03-2008
Originally Posted by WeasleyMum View Post

To answer some PP's ideas that it's "bad karma" to be well-supplied, or that it somehow indicates a bad outlook: I don't get it.
I didn't say it was bad karma to be well supplied. I said it's better karma to contribute more to the food bank.

I strongly believe that it's better karma to give to others than to "stockpile" or hoard for myself.
almadianna's Avatar almadianna 05:36 PM 10-03-2008
i do stockpile but not like for end of the world stuff... we do it every year in the beginning of hurricane season and we eat it all after the end of hurricane season.

we live in texas and have had 3 major hurricanes/tropical storms hit us in the last 10 years (rita, allison, and now Ike) so it has been quite helpful. because of my stockpiling we were able to eat very well for the 2 weeks that we didnt have electriity.. we ate warm food, healthy meals, and didnt have a single MRE.

But like i said above I dont stockpile like 300 pounds of toilet paper or anything like that.. the most that i have is that i buy meat through a farm and I (at the most right after delivery) have around 70 pounds worth of meat in my deep freeze... other than that it is usually a few boxes of stuff here and there.
dolcedaze's Avatar dolcedaze 06:33 PM 10-03-2008
I didn't, for years, because it didn't seem to make financial sense. I've never bought into the absent paycheck scenario, because in those cases the money would do us a lot more good stashed in the the bank than previously spent on things we might or might not need. We've never lived in an area where natural disasters would last more than a few days.

Now I've started, out of frugality and not preparedness. I keep a supply of coupons for things we do use or that give overage, then use them to buy a year's worth of items on sale for free. I have a large pantry completely stuffed with free food. We have the space and it saves us thousands of dollars, so I no longer had a reason not to do it.
WeasleyMum's Avatar WeasleyMum 04:44 PM 10-04-2008
Originally Posted by choli View Post
I didn't say it was bad karma to be well supplied. I said it's better karma to contribute more to the food bank.

I strongly believe that it's better karma to give to others than to "stockpile" or hoard for myself.
OK, that's a good point, and I may be guilty of skimming and/or mixing up posts (). But they are hardly mutually exclusive activities, either.
whalemilk's Avatar whalemilk 03:40 PM 10-10-2008
Even if I wanted to, where would I put it? There's four of us and three cats in an urban apartment with two tiny bedrooms and a miniscule kitchen. I wouldn't say it's cramped but let's say the ambiance is very...European. Very Ikea. We store stuff under the beds, the closets are stacked, the tiny freezer is arranged just so only to hold a month's worth of broth and chicken breasts...and we don't *have* a lot of things! Any extra "stuff" we had got sold this summer when we hit our personal financial crisis. Unless I started piling cases of canned goods on the floor and just walking over them, I don't have anywhere to put a year's worth of food even if I for some reason thought that was a sane idea.

So speaking of elitism, one thing that bothers me about this whole concept is it pretty much requires you to be a North American space hog to start with. You need a certain amount of square footage in your home to stockpile, you need a house with its own yard (and not an apartment or condo) to have a "sustenance" garden, and you absolutely must have a car to haul the vats of ketchup and pinto beans home from Sam's Club and Costco. And if you're thinking of raising chickens or shooting game, that requires you to live a little further out and drive everywhere, and to have a little more space...for all the pioneer fantasizing I see, NONE of this scheming is really sustainable.

And who am I, I am no Army sharp shooter, hell I was raised Quaker. I'm some fat housewife with bad hips, and if the hoardes of hungry, angry men came to our door I and my two very small daughters would be toast, albeit after my skinny nerd husband put up a valiant effort at defending us. To anyone who isn't already higher on the totem pole, or married to someone who is, this whole idea of steeling ourselves against anarchy and deprivation by stockpiling is a sad, sad joke.
the_lissa's Avatar the_lissa 03:46 PM 10-10-2008
Good points. There are so many reasons why peoel are against stockpiling, and it has nothing to do with being a cool kid. I think it is harmful.
dancebaraka's Avatar dancebaraka 04:41 PM 10-10-2008
I am hanging out in both sides' threads... for the record, I can see all sides to this.

For myself, I want to cultivate integration of ideas, and not "either-or" thinking. KWIM? Anyone??

For what it's worth, we *are* prepping for a financial depression. I am not stockpiling food beyond a month, though. We are downsizing, living within our means, paying off all debts, etc. etc.

Oh yeah... and ditto the wine and chocolate. 2-3 cases of 2-buck chuck is on my shopping list. No matter what happens, I'll be festive!

Scribe's Avatar Scribe 04:45 PM 10-10-2008
I've been following and thinking about this thread for awhile now, and have finally come up with the reasons why I don't stockpile:

1. I don't really believe anything horrible is going to happen, and if it does, I don't really believe that anything I can buy up now and save in my house is going to help.

2. Stockpiling does feel like hording to me, and doesn't seem generous or community-spirited.

3. I believe very strongly in not giving myself license to worry unnecessarily, and too much focus on what could happen ends up being just that.
slsurface's Avatar slsurface 05:00 PM 10-10-2008
Originally Posted by avengingophelia View Post
3. I believe very strongly in not giving myself license to worry unnecessarily, and too much focus on what could happen ends up being just that.
How very zen! Well said.
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