I have done a lot of research and the best resources are the Centers for Disease and Control (CDC), The Red Cross, and The LDS Church website (see provident living). There is a lot of information and basically what I decided to do was to include a majority of including a few things that made it personal. When making your own really consider, can I live out of this bag for 72 hours? Prepackaged bags are probably nice, but are going to cost much more and will lack many things that you might feel are more important.
Okay... so here are some pictures of things that I included and I will tell you why as we go.
Lets Start with Hygiene:
I am making 3 bags. One for me, one for my husband and one for both of my kids ages 3.5 and 1.5. (Four would be impractical as they can't carry bags yet. Everyone has their own hygiene ziplock. It is also good to place things in water proof containers to avoid them becoming ruined in floods or rains.
Some of this stuff you might think. I really can do with out lotion or eye drops, but hygiene is health. Your body needs what it is accustom to such as brushing your teeth. Gums do get infected! Smoke or dust in your eyes can hurt. Do you see what I mean? Simple things maybe be very important. Just think what a big deal it is when you can't find your chap stick when your lips are peeling?!
Now for Equipment.
B: Led Flash lights and batteries(not pictured)
C: Shovel that is collapsible.
D. 2 pocket knives
E. An Axe.
C: Self Charging Radio and Flashlight! (so cool) **radio is very important for communication
E: Waterproof matches and fire sticks
G: Ponchos and Emergency Blankets
H. Bungie cords
When I went to buy these items I first hit up a few sporting goods stores and was disappointed by price and selection. Then I tried Walmart and found the jack pot! Good ol Wally world. Now I know that the quality of the knives and things are not 100% but I am only looking to need them for 72hrs essentially. We don't go camping every other weekend with them so for this the will be just fine.
Whistles are important for sound, tarp and bungie cords for shelter, and most of the other stuff I am sure you can reason. A few things that are not shown above but are important is walkie-talkies one in each bag and flares.
Next is Fuel.
I am not an expert but I heard that a very awesome product is Sterno. This is commonly used under fondue pots. Sterno is great because it will still ignite even if it was sitting in water for an hour. It is naturally water repellent. It is cheap and light and easy to pack. I bought 2 for each bag. It maybe our only source of heat! As shown previously we have matches. I also purchased a few lighters not shown.
Remember to buy things that your kids will eat. Kids are the first to die in famines from pure disinterest in the food.You have all seen those children on the discovery channel with the little bloated bellies from starving. In my clinical nutrition class my instructor explained out children will starve not because of lack of food, but they just disinterested. Add some hard candy something to flavor it up for the kids.
(Apart of my first aid kit is vitamins and supplements.)
Next is Water:
All back packs have bottled water but also I have ordered some awesome water bottles. This is the thing that I am most Stoked about!! These water bottles fitler not only dirt and particles from the water but also viruses, and bacteria, including things like Giardia! Or so I am told. I haven't recieved mine yet to read all the details but they have a new filtration system that is supposed to work incredibly. The Church sent a bunch over to Haiti and now supply missionaries with them.
You can order them off of www.ldscatalog.com just search water bottle and it will come up.
And now for the backpacks.
Again these were a cheap deal at Wally World. Lots of little pockets for ponchos and whistles. Brandon's pack as most of the heavier equipment in it. Mine will have the first aid kit and most the food. I am trying to keep it spread between them in case one gets lost or ruined we would be okay with just one. Consider where you store them. Easily accessible on your escape route. Ours is in the kids room. First grab the kids, second the packs then run! Cars are a good option too.
***Another Tip is to put a list of what is included in each bag in an outside pocket and updated it as you go. This helps so that you don't have to dig everything thing out just to remember what you put in there a year ago!
I am going to have to do a separate post on the first aid kit! I don't have pics and am sick of staring at the computer for now!! Hope this helps and motivates you! I can't rely on anyone else for my children's well being and that is what makes me get to work!