Okay, we have another threat here in the Gulf Coast. The last one was, uhhh . . . I don't remember it's name since it didn't actually hit us here in Houston. My DH, who is usually the last person to take anything weather related seriously, woke me up early and said "Go stock up! A storm is coming." So I go to the store, which is full of folks in full panic mode (I'm thinking WTF??? Ain't going to happen.) and I am wandering around trying to figure out what to buy, beside some bottled water.. He is so picky, that it was a very limited choice. So, I get some peanut butter and cheese crackers, beef jerky, peanut protein bars, and since we have a gas grill with a burner on the side, I buy some Newman's pasta sauce, noodles, a couple of cans of spaghetti O's (his preference, not mine) and some chicken noodle soup, condensed. Then I am racking my brain for more items. I didn't want to get anything that needs refrigeration, or a freezer, so what to buy? Besides bottles water.
As Fay was showing a predicted path to my front door I stood in line for 40 min to get 2 LPG tanks filled. Sent the wife out for a dozen gallons of water. Didn't get as much as a drop of rain as Fay took a southerly turn into the state.
I have so much food in my freezers that before we lost power I could transfer a lot of stuff into the fridge freezers and work off that without opening the upright freezer and eat well for at least a week. PB and canned tuna are always great to keep on hand. I think I could cook out of my pantry for a while after I could no longer use anything from the freezers. Really water is a biggie. You need it to drink and you need it to cook. I have enough water in my pool to use for flushing the toilets. And don't forget batteries and fill up your car soon in case you need to high tail it out of dodge since our gas stations were out of gas several days before people were even looking at this seriously.
Wishing you good luck with this one. Gustov looks like it could be nasty when it hits the Gulf.
Heh...I feel your pain..am in Naples, FL. We took a major hit here from Wilma in 2005, power was out in our neighborhood for 4 days. One thing I did not have then but I do have now is a good portable Coleman freezer chest, not electric (the kind you could take to the beach or on a camping trip)...just one you can throw some ice into to keep anything you had before the storm at least cold for a few days if your power goes out so that you can GRILL it on your gas grill. I think you have plenty for just the two of you (?); maybe sardines or kipper snacks would be good to add, though not everyone loves them--but they are easy to open and are very nutritious. Try to be sensible and not get caught up in the hysteria, too. Clean water is probably more important for flat-out survival. I hope Gustav stays away from everyone! Oh, gas is "down to" $3.74 a gallon here, big drop from $3.99...so I filled up on my way home as I kept reading headlines today about oil going up ALREADY in anticipation of Gustav coming into the Gulf.
I was in West Palm for Wilma and ate grilled hotdogs and caned corned beef for four days w/o power. Never let a boyfriend stock up pre-storm unless you want to be w/o power AND puffy. Dern salt...
I'm in Biloxi, MS now and went out to get supplies for Gustav yesterday. I didn't go nuts as I didn't want to be left with tons of canned things that won't get eaten. I bought water, a few cans of Campbells Select Harvest Soups, canned pears, mandarin orange cups, tuna pouches, special k bars, a bag of oranges, and extra food for our kittens. We already have PB, crackers, and canned beans. I also filled up my gas tank as I've noticed prices starting to creep up. If worse comes to worse I'll just drive north. My husband started pulling out the pre-packaged meals that are shelf-stable he had left from his last deployment...can't remember what they're called...Anyhow, he offered those to me(he's necessary personel so he HAS to stay on base in the case of evacuation whereas I'm not allowed to) but they hold about as much appeal as chewing on my shoe so I declined. =)
Having survived Hurricane Andrew and several others here in Miami I will add my 2 cents. Other than the obvious food items added to my hurricane supplies are; wet ones or any kind of baby diaper wipes to be able to clean up; huge amounts of paper towels; bought huge water containers from Wal-Mart to fill up with water instead of bying a ton of bottled water; tarps from Wal-Mart for immediate roof repairs; bug repellant; get cash from bank &/or bank machine as they will go down; candles; and as posted earlier gas for your grill because the propane dealers will sell out fast; cans of tuna fish; make sure you have a manual can opener; we also have battery operated fans; battery operated tv/radio; propane camping lamp with propane cannisters; matches. Last but not least do as earlier suggested, fill up your car with gas, lines will start getting ridiculous so get it filled asap.
As the storm gets closer there will be lots more panic, etc. so best to get all of your supplies early and then sit and wait. Even if you are not in the eye of the storm sometimes the bands are even worse, especially on the eastern side of the storm, bands there are usually the heaviest. Needless to say if you have seen the news lately while Fay was only a tropical storm it caused severe flooding across the whole state of Florida since it sat here and stalled. East coast in places received over 33" of rain.
Looks like Gustav is going to be major so you need to take it serious and get your emergency plans in order. Stay Informed, but above all Stay Safe.
To paraphrase a line from the movie The Graduate, one word, just one word, no it's not plastics, it's ICE. This is assuming you have everything else in order. Way back in 19 and 83 after Alicia in Houston, I was on the southeast side and got the eyewall, never the eye, sustained winds 95 plus. All the old oak trees were down, no water 7 days, phone 10 days, power 2 weeks. Did not miss the phone at all. It's 95 degrees the next day, and cold drinks are wonderful when cleaning up debris. Sounds crazy, but I got steaks and charcoal the day before and ate well for a couple of days.
re: James Cristinian
For us up here (I live in Montréal) ICE has a very different meaning, as the most recent dangerous storm was the great ice storm in western Québec and Eastern Ontario. Ice could have been picked from any balcony. And had to be, to prevent collapse. Like our Acadian cousins in Louisiana, we have metal balconies with wrought iron balustrades...
Firstly, good luck and godspeed to all the people in Gustav's path in the US Gulf area and the Caribbean - it has already killed many people in Haiti and the Dominican Republic - there is a huge Haitian community here so that is a general concern. Of course we also hear of the threat to New Orleans and nearby regions and wish them not to re-experience Katrina...
Since the ice storm a lot of us have been careful, even in the big cities of Montréal and Ottawa, to always have at least some tinned fish or other protein and water laid in. Yeah, cat food too, but he can also eat the tinned fish.
A little Chinese catering stove can be nice for essential cooking.
Alkapal, I agree with wine. Ideally good, but even some decent boxed stuff.
If you have a little butane stove or other kind of non-electric stove, making espresso in a small moka pot or Melitta filter coffee will not take any more energy than instant. And you can use it for a lot of the foods mentioned here. I hate instant oatmeal (too spoiled by real Irish or Scottish porridge) and a lot of it is full of sugar - do you really want a dental emergency? but couscous, bulghur etc are nutritious and actually partly cooked.
I've neglected to buy one of those wind-up radios first invented for the African bush but must do so as they are the most dependable thing. We got constant info from Radio-Canada/CBC.
What I don't understand is why everyone waits until there is an emergency to get their stuff in order?????--doesn't make sense to me. We always have a stock of canned food, pasta, rice, etc. and also candles, propane and lamp oil(and lamps). We always keep at least 15 gallons of water because we are on a well that needs electricity. Ice storms are common here and power can be out for 1 or 2 weeks and the roads totally impassible.
My suggestion is to do a good pantry with canned chicken, tuna, crab, clams, soups; and vegies such as green beans, corn, mushrooms; a good supply of whole wheat pasta, rice and for us wild rice. Ramen noodles are a great thing for emergencies because they don't take long to cook. Don't forget treats! We also have a freezer full of meat and vegies (and have a generator).
Don't forget things like toilet paper, paper towels. If you do a bit each time you shop, you can have a stocked pantry. When stuff is on sale, buy a bunch.
I am with you, get the water and other goods in before the panic. I start buying 2 for 1s from about March onwards and by the time hurricane season is here (south Fl) we could live on tuna salad on crackers for weeks, cereals and long life milk, canned fruit etc. I always have an extra bag of dog food for the pups. Wilma left us without power for 8 days and we did fine.