Sunday, August 17, 2014

Vacation and Emergency Preparedness

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For the past ten days I was on vacation with my family.  Family vacations are fun but they always have me thinking, what if?  What if our car breaks down in the middle of the desert and it's 109°?  What if one of my children becomes ill?  What if we got lost? (it could happen)  What if there is an earthquake, the roads are destroyed, and we can't get home? Some may call me paranoid but these thoughts do cross my mind.  

Our vacation this year was in California and we drove from Utah.  Along the way there is a stretch of desert and it was well over 100° for a good part of the drive.  This part of the trip always makes me nervous.  It's a real fear of mine that we will break down somewhere in the Mojave desert.  There are several things I do to calm my nerves.

  • We always have two cases of water, if not more on our trip.
  • We take enough food to last at least 3 days in our car.  
  • We always have blankets and a tarp in case our car breaks down and we need shelter, or something to lay on as we change a tire.
  • We carry small bills just in the off chance we would need to buy items in an emergency.
My husband will usually humor me and he kind of laughs that I want that much water and food with us, but he won't be laughing when/if we actually needed it all.  We use the water and snacks along the way and it actually saves us a TON of money. Have you seen the prices of food and water at gas stations in the middle of no where??

So my husband humors me by taking extra water and food, but he was not so into taking our whole car kit.  If I was driving alone with the kids it would've been in there, but we were packed to the brim with 5 kids and all their stuff.  The car kit I usually keep in our vehicle was left at home (along with our first aid kit).  We didn't break down or have any other car issues, thank goodness, but I knew if something happened we would have food and water for a little while until help arrived.

Click HERE to view my previous post on car kits

Remember the first aid kit that got left behind in the car kit.....One of the lessons I learned on this trip was to be better prepared with first aid supplies.  I do carry bandaids in my purse but the two incidents that happened required a little more than a bandaid.  First accident involved my 14 year old, a large rock in the sand, and her toe nail.  I was at the house when she came inside in tears and limping.  As she was walking across the sand she hit a rock in the sand and it ripped half her toe nail off.  Now, I always thought I didn't have any problem with blood and injuries.  Well, good to know, it was sooooo gross and I had a hard time staying calm while helping her.  We cleaned it up with water and I gave her a bandaid, but it would have been nice to have Neosporin, gauze, and small nail clippers.  I had to purchase all of those items at the store.  Even a small first aid kit (which is in my car kit that wasn't allowed on this trip ;) would have helped in this situation.  Lesson learned!!

Accident number two involved the same child, I think I see a trend now and it scares me, and a hot chaffing dish at the hotel.  As she was reaching for a pancake her inner wrist touched the chaffing dish and she got burned.  It was about 3 inches in diameter and was hurting her badly.  She did ice it but kept telling me it was really painful.  I, mother of the year, kept brushing her off and was busy packing all of our gear up.  As we were getting in the car I took a look at her arm and marched her straight to the front desk of the hotel.  They immediately pulled out a first aid kit and gave her aloe to put on it.  They had us wait while they checked with the hotel kitchen to see if they had any burn cream.  Lucky for us they did, along with a burn patch, gauze, and aloe with lidocaine in it.  I could've easily had a few of the burn patches in a first aid kit.  If we had been anywhere besides a hotel I would've had to purchase those items as well.  (and yes we got a discount on our room because of the accident.  I didn't ask, they offered)  The burn patches were similar to these sold on Amazon.

So, the big lesson learned this trip was to have a fully stocked mini first aid kit!!  Of course now I'll have all the items that I needed and some other random injury will happen that I'm not prepared for, but at least I'll have burn patches and neosporin.  Being prepared for every injury is almost impossible, but having a well stocked first aid kit will give you peace of mind in the mean time. 

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