It's 5 am, but I'm up bright and early to give you ALL the links for these Go Bags . . . Bug Out Bags . . . Survival Bags. I LOVE a good system, and this one is a compilation of 30 YouTube videos and thinking of our family's particular location and hazards.
So, Why Would you Need a Go Bag?
Ideally, if a crisis happened economically, politically or environmentally, we would be safe at home. I have a long-term food pantry system, and we could just chill until the power turned back on, or people stopped freaking out about the next election (been there).
But there are some situations where we would need to leave.
A friend's state gave warning that a nuke was going to hit in a few hours and she was left frantically running around the house grabbing diapers, and whatever else she could think of! (And then said, "whoops! Never mind.) I had to evacuate my Aunt's house because of an approaching fire, and she was scrambling loading up children and photos and anything else that seemed important.
Maybe it's civil unrest in our suburb, maybe we want to get across the state line to one of our families. Maybe it's a worst case-scenario situation where we have to leave in the middle of the night because Elisha quits the CIA and we are on the government's most-wanted list.
I don't know quite what the situation would to be, but having a go-bag is my worst-case scenario line of defense if something happens where we need to leave home in 5 minutes.
Best case scenario, we take them on a few hiking trips as a family and make some good memories feeling hard-core. Or repurpose the items around the house and just store them in the Go Bags.
What we are trying to avoid is 79 items thrown into a bag or the back of the car. So the backpacks, the organizers, and the function of those items are what are going to determine if this project is a nightmare or brings peace of mind.
Honestly, I don't want to know. I bought these items over the last three months to help spread out cost. Then I put the packs 80% together, made a list of final items I'd need, and ordered those over another month, but there are a few things still on my list to add.
If you're one of the thousand incredible women in the Get It All Done Club, you know I'm a BIG believer in doing what you can NOW while your motivation is high. Even if you don't have a budget for this, collecting a few of these items around your house, and stuffing them in an old school back pack is better than flying around the house trying to grab them in a panic moment.
Starting is better than doing nothing at all. If you have a tight budget, fire, food, water, and staying dry can all be done pretty affordably.
Say looting starts happening at midnight in our suburb because some kind of law gets passed, or its election year, or something dramatic. We plop the kids in their dry suits (because it's wet half the year here), grab the packs, and see the reminder written on our packs to check the safe.
This Go-Bag system works hand-in-hand with our Car System--theTrauma Kit and Survival Kit we have stored in our vehicle (for when we are out of service, or can't get home). It's a last resort if the Long-Term Pantry System isn't a good option, and if I have time, I'll grab our in-depth Home First Aid System. (I'm working on sharing all of these soon!)
So let's break down exactly what's in our Go-Bags.
Med Kit + Shelter
These roll out emergency bags are great organizers for on the go! If you don't want this just sitting in a back pack, you can organize it with items you'll use in a survival situation AND on a monthly basis (blister pads, batteries, zip ties, gorilla glue, sharpies, bandaids etc.) and keep it where you can access it. Just leave room in your pack and make a note (like, write a literal note) to grab it on your way out the door.
Emergency Med Kit Bag: https://amzn.to/3uoMYQo
Compressed Towels: https://amzn.to/3mdFhZE
Blister Bandages: https://amzn.to/39MIPMR
4 inch Wood Nails: https://amzn.to/39NMU3p
Chickweed Salve: https://amzn.to/3AWv2PJ
Gorilla Glue: https://amzn.to/39POodf
Trauma Sheers: https://amzn.to/3B8Mpww
AAA Batteries: https://amzn.to/3B0Qfb9
Mosquito and Tick Repellent: https://amzn.to/3A0fg4W
Zip Ties: https://amzn.to/2Y0IAuP
Sewing Kit: I put this together myself from some sewing notions I already had.
Body Warmer: https://amzn.to/3zXN9n5
I bought the below items in a bit more bulk, because I used them to also create my Home First Aid Kit System and Trauma System.
Gauze Sponges: https://amzn.to/3kUZggf
Safety Pins: https://amzn.to/39SjhxG
Bandage Tape: https://amzn.to/2ZLYudx
Wound Closures: https://amzn.to/3F98ihG
Alcohol Prep Pads: https://amzn.to/3kVF51H
Food, Fire, Water
For most of this stuff, we went to our local outdoor store, but I'll try to link you to as much as I can.
Annie's Fruit Snacks - to replace Welches: https://amzn.to/3uoS92V
Instant Coffee: https://amzn.to/3okHi96
Emergency stove: https://amzn.to/3zWtsfd
Cooking Kettle: https://amzn.to/3CZCkmo
Life Straw: https://amzn.to/3zT9Dp7
Adventure Meals - I bought this box at Costco for half the price, so you may want to shop around: https://amzn.to/2ZKdske
Chomps Beef Sticks - calories without fire or water: https://amzn.to/3F6AL7V
Trash bags: https://amzn.to/3AWa3w9
Ziplock Bags: https://amzn.to/2ZMf2C8
Fire Starter - if you don't need this much, you can get it in $4-5 amounts at an outdoor gear store: https://amzn.to/3unOnqw
5- Hour Energy drink (I've never had one of these and a single cup of coffee makes me sick and jittery, so this probably won't be my go-to)
Pill Case Organizer: https://amzn.to/3mfkKEb
Arnica - Amazing for swelling and bruises! I use this all the time with four little kiddos bonking their heads: https://amzn.to/2Y5m30t
I'm SUPER picky about supplements, because if your body isn't absorbing them or if they are synthetic, they can turn toxic in the body and actually deplete your system of other nutrients you need! All the supplements I packed I share more in detail about on @nowthatimamother.health.
Neolax - Gentle Laxative
Cal-Mag - Leg cramps
Beta-Gest - Removes heavy metals from the body
Garlic - Immunity
Super C - gum health, immunity
Performance Pack - energy, vitamins, minerals (things like beef liver to help with anemia etc.)
I just threw in a pair of old pants, undies and shirt for each kiddo. For Elisha and I, I left out the pants. I also threw in two sets of nice wool socks. These are actually the nicest socks the kiddos own, and we will use them for hiking and camping, but still store them in the packs. The Rain suits will be what the children travel in, as they are thin, warm, and easy to clip carseats straps over.
Rain Suits: https://amzn.to/3l0jl57
Kiddos wool socks: https://amzn.to/3F2Ui9i
Men/Women's wool socks: https://amzn.to/39Ryf7b
Gloves - again, nice gloves we will use for projects outdoors this fall, but we will always replace them in the packs: https://amzn.to/3zTehU5
** If you live in a hot area, you may want to add a ball cap
Thin wipes: https://amzn.to/3kQM3VI
Flint And Steel: https://amzn.to/39POth3
Nail Clippers: https://amzn.to/3maeKwp
Glo Sticks - Keep packaged so they don't break: https://amzn.to/39On4MC
Rain Poncho - these are way cheaper in a camping store (like $3)
Emergency Blankets: https://amzn.to/2Y6bfPJ
Collapsable Cups: https://amzn.to/39PCHDB
Multi Tool: https://amzn.to/3AYEW39
Survival Candle: https://amzn.to/3B0tapc
Bic Lighters: https://amzn.to/3inoySx
I have a small rain suit for Lawrence, but depending on your infant's size, you may want to pack a hat, sleep sack, or pacifier.
Reusable Diapers - I've used Flip covers since I full time cloth diapered my first two kiddos and LOVE them: https://www.greenmountaindiapers.com/collections/flip
My favorite cloth diaper prefolds: https://amzn.to/3AXzJJ2
Formula: (I use Neolife shake from @nowthatimamother.health )
Disposable diapers: The correct size
Baby Bottle: (I just used one I had on hand)
Steel Carabiners: https://amzn.to/39QbVek
Emergency Whistles: https://amzn.to/3uqSJ0b
Bungee Cords: https://amzn.to/3CUSVrm
Tarp: I can't tell which one I bought online . . . it's manageable and assuming around 12 feet square ish.
Leatherman - This is an investment, but Elisha uses it as his hunting knife, so we actively use it then store it in the Go-Bags: https://amzn.to/2WrTr0p
Haha, I'm not too worried about how I smell or look out in the woods, but I don't want to be hit by my period unexpectedly, or get a cavity. Some things I have seen people add are hand sanitizer, deodorant, shampoo, laundry detergent, and Q tips.
Travel Toothbrush Kit: https://amzn.to/3AWuWYn
Diva Cup: https://amzn.to/3ijZyvx
Toilet Paper: https://amzn.to/3m7DghE
This system actually helped me locate all my important documents and place them in one place . . . finally. I use velcro to attach the zip pouches of our documents, and our computer's back up hard drive and cash, to the back of the safe. This is a handy system to have in place on its own. You don't to think about digging through a file folder, carrying heavy computers, or grabbing photo books even in the event of a home fire.
When I was 20, an arson burned my family's barn down. Photos were gone forever, and it was frustrating to replace 11 children's legal documents.
Velcro - I also used this for our Home First Aid System, and it's a great organizational tool to have on hand: https://amzn.to/3kVkGtJ
Hardrive - ours is not this cool, but I'd get this one if I could do it again: https://amzn.to/3omR6zE
Cash: Even $20 could come in handy
- Birth Certs
- Social Security
- Marriage License
- Family Photo (comfort, or if people get separated)
Amo/Firearm: This stuff is HEAVY so it's worth carrying it on a hike to know how much is worth bringing.
I get it. That was a lot! But it was a fun project to put together and hopefully these links make it easier! It gives Elisha and my big imaginations peace of mind having these hanging in the garage, and, like I mentioned, we do use a lot of what is in the bags! We just make sure to always replace what we borrow or take.
I think it's important to use the bags to get comfortable carrying them, using the tools inside, and figuring out what sounded good in theory and is actually practical. I'll update you when we go on our first camping trip over on Instagram!
Anything you would add? Let us know down below!
If you are looking to create more systems that simplify your home, check out Katie's Free Masterclass to learn her top three tips for creating a peacefully productive home!
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