- You can be prepared without being a “prepper”
- Do not panic and run out and buy all of this today
- Only purchase things you will actually use during a 6-8 week period
- Slowly add these extra items to your upcoming shopping trips, rather than buy everything at once and blow your budget
A Practical Guide for Stocking Up on Food and Household Items, in Preparation for Potential Quarantine
As I’ve watched the news in the past 6 weeks about the spread of the Coronavirus, and spoken with family who work on the front lines of the health care system, I thought a practical guide to preparing for a potential quarantine was in order.
The tipping point for me to share this with you today: the country of Italy is now facing quarantine in an effort to slow the advance of this new virus.
I am not an alarmist. I am not a pessimistic person. I am not one to insight panic. I am not afraid of this virus or the potential quarantine.
I am a realist. And at this point, I believe the potential for quarantine at the community, local, and state level is a very real possibility.
I am not a “prepper” but I believe in being prepared.
So, let’s be prepared – together. Shall we?!
I want to help you create a simple, solid plan for what you should stock up on, in the event that you get do get sick from this virus and need to self-quarantine, or in the event that you choose to self-quarantine or your employer requires a quarantine because of an outbreak in your area.
Social distancing seems like a wise option to help slow the spread of this virus.
Getting the flu puts you out about 7-14 days – our family has been through this a few times over the past 10 years and it’s not that hard to manage around it.
This new coronavirus is different from the flu virus. It is spread easily before symptoms appear, symptoms last longer, the virus sheds longer after symptoms subside, and the average quarantine for patients exposed or those who test positive is closer to the 3 weeks range. If a widespread quarantine is advised for any patient population, you could be looking at a potential of 6-8 weeks at home if a long lasting community outbreak occurs. (Note: much of the original outbreak region in China is still on lockdown after 6 weeks.)
READ: CDC warns that at-risk patient populations need to prepare to stay home
Do not, do not, do not panic and “overbuy” any of these items. Thoughtfully consider how much of these you might need to get through a 4-8 week long home stay.
I also don’t think you need to take this list and run out and buy it all today. Add an extra of one or two of these items over your few grocery and drugstore trips. This will help you spread the cost out over time.
Another reason to start this slow stockpile now is that as this virus spreads and more pressure it placed on the local and global economy, pricing surges will begin to increase on high demand items – even beyond products like toilet paper, water, sanitizer, and soaps.
Finally, keep living your life, and slowly increase the stockpile of the following items, as space and budget allows. Again, carefully consider only what you might NEED.
Products and Ingredients to Stock Up for Potential Quarantine
- Prescription medications – call your insurance company to get approval for a forward extension for any monthly prescriptions
- Over the counter medications – fever reducing, congestion and cough related medication and relief
- Diabetes supplies
- First aid supplies
- Any other medications you take regularly that could run out in 6-8 weeks
*Speak with your doctor about any other specific needs you should consider.
- Toothpaste and toothbrushes (we always replace toothbrushes after viral and bacterial illnesses)
- Feminine products
- Body wash, shampoo and conditioner
Baby and Toddler
- Diapers and wipes
- Convenience snacks and food pouches
Household & Cleaning
- Laundry soap
- Dish soap refill
- Hand soap refill
- Wipes and sanitizer (virus lives within mucus, yuck I know, so consider using a wipe first and then sanitizer!)
- Reusable dish cloths
- Disinfectant spray
- Alcohol and aloe – to make your own cleaning cloths and sanitizer
- Canned beans
- Canned tomatoes
- Canned or jarred fruits
- Canned veggies
- Large bags of snacks and chips
- Brown rice or white rice
- Jarred sauces
- Baking ingredients
- Fruits and veggies in freezer for smoothies – learn how to make smoothie packs
- Shredded cheese
- Bread and rolls
- Veggies for side dishes
- Freezer meals for your family (see options below!)
- Meal Plans Using Ingredients from Costco – 20 Meals for $150 series
Did you know?!
The Meal Plans Using Ingredients from Costco are PERFECT for a time like this. They were originally created to help “mix and match” bulk ingredients purchased from Costco (Sams or BJs, too) into a variety of different freezer meals.
And then it morphed into MyFreezEasy – a freezer meals program and app that allows you to pick and choose recipes you want to put into the freezer.
We recommend adding 10-20 meals to your freezer, ahead of the potential quarantine.
What if you don’t have room?! You do – you just might have to play some tetris!
And what happens if there is no quarantine and you never had the need to stay home for a few weeks/months?! Nothing really!
Except that you get to enjoy the fruits of having meals prepped in the freezer, and having to not purchase these other items for a few months. 🙂
And if you end up falling in love with the ease and simplicity of freezer meals, we’d love to help you with that long term!
Thank you for your article. It promted me to go to the store again this week but with the “what if my kids are home from school for weeks?” scenario in mind. I have 4 kids and it isn’t easy to run to the store with them. Hours after I went to the store we were notified school was closed for 3 weeks! I was so happy I was prepared because now the store shelves are empty and people stood in huge lines to buy food.
Val Clark says
We loose power frequently and I’m concerned that the power grid could fail altogether. I have been trying to put up shelf stable foods from the grocery store(I cannot afford bulk right now). But it is hard to figure out meats. I would love to see a few weeks of shelf stable meal plans. I am due with #7 today, so my freezer is packed out with 10 breakfasts, 2 lunches, and some postpartum snacks. Large family meals take up so much room! I LOVE the kids cooking video you put up. I don’t know how much we’ll be able to participate as far as coming up with ingredients , but I love how real and down to earth, not scripted it is and what a generous gift to the online community. Thanks