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Are plastic containers safe to store food?

25 Oct

On the bottom of plastic containers, you’ll see a number inside a triangle. It’s a code developed by the plastics industry to make sorting plastics easier for recycling centers; it also indicates what type of plastic the container is made of.
  
  
  

 

 
 
Do’s and Don’ts

Microwaving: Do use microwave-safe glass or ceramic. Don’t use any plastic, including plastic wrap and Styrofoam. Cover foods with paper, not plastic.
 
Refrigerator Storage: Do use glass, ceramic, stainless steel, or PVC-free plastic wrap. Don’t use plastic containers.
 
Lunches: Do use foil or waxed or butcher paper to wrap sandwiches and snacks. If you prefer the convenience of bags, look for ones made from number 4 plastic.  
 
Water: Do use glass or stainless steel or bottles made from number 2 or 5 plastic.
Don’t use any drink bottles made from number 7 plastic.
 
Freezing: Do use foil, freezer paper, or number 4 plastic freezer bags.
Don’t use any glass or plastic not labeled FREEZER SAFE-extreme cold can cause both to crack. Don’t put hot food in plastic bags or containers-let it cool first.
 

 

Pantry Storage: Do use glass, stainless steel, or number 5 plastic.
Don’t store food in any plastic container made from number 3,6, or 7 plastic.

Cheese: Try to buy cheese off the block instead of pre-packed. If you can’t, remove the plastic as soon as you get home.

Fruits & Vegetables: Avoid pre-packed fruits and vegetables. Buy loose whenever possible.

Cans: Try to cut down your use of foods packed in plastic-lined cans.

 

 

If you wish to read more about Healthy food storage, Green living, and recycling here are some interesting books:

  • Easy Green LivingThe ultimate guide to simple, eco-friendly choices for you and your home by Renee Loux
  • It’s Easy Being Green A Handbook for earth-friendly living by Crissy Trask
  • Super Natural HomeImprove your Health, Home and Planet by Beth Greer
  • 1001 Easy Ways to Earth-wise Living – Natural and eco-friendly ideas that can  make a real difference to your life / Reader’s Digest

 

 

Personal Note: ” You might want to check your plastic  containers and sort out the unhealthy ones!   

In my up-coming posts I will talk about Interior Design Principles and some helpful tips to use in your home.  So, stay tuned and have a happy and wonderful day!”   Beate

 

 

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Does your wardrobe need a …

17 Oct

Personal Note: “De-cluttering your wardrobe is a big task. Make it a fun weekend project!

In my next post I will show you how easy it is to make your own little sachets with delightful scents to keep your clothes fresh and smell beautifully.  So, stay tuned and have a happy and wonderful day!”   Beate

 

De-clutter your wardrobe!

 

Time to de-clutter!

If you have reorganized the space in your closet or spring-cleaned it (see my former posts), sort your clothes, handbags, shoes and accessories out and bring back only what you love and what you use. Here are the steps:

 

 

1. Take out everything you have in your wardrobe and throw on your bed or the floor (if it is clean).

2. Remove clothes, shoes and other items that you did not wear for the past 1 year. For each item ask yourself these questions or get help from a good friend:

  • Does it fit?
  • Is it comfortable?
  • Is it flattering?
  • Have I worn it in the last year?
  • If not, why not?
  • Is it still in fashion?
  • Would I wear it if it was altered – let out, taken in, shoulder pads removed, shortened, buttons changed, dyed another colour?

 

3. Make three piles:

  • Perfect — these go back into the wardrobe
  • Need attention —   Items that need something doing, like Dry cleaned, mended, altered etc – Do it straight away!
  • Let go — Items that can be sold (or swap with friends), donated, recycled or tossed.  

 
4. Sort that Let Go pile into 4 categories:

  • SELL: Any item that you would purchase for yourself and things you KNOW other people would buy, items with a brand name or looks almost new are pretty good. Bring it to a second hand shop or sell on the internet.
  • DONATE: Anything that is WEARABLE that didn’t make it in the Sell pile, but be reasonable.  Do not donate anything with holes, rips, tears, stains…
  • RE-PURPOSE: Anything that is NOT wearable. If you can tear up t-shirts or other clothes to use as a rag  for the next art or cleaning project or to wear it while painting the house next week, then keep them in a separate place .
  • TOSS: Anything that is not able to be re-purposed or worn again.

 

5. Spring clean your closet:

  • Vacuum throughout
  • Wash down shelves and woodwork
  • Place wonderfully smelling sachets in different places and between your clothes. (I will show you in my next post how to make them yourself, step-by-step and in-expensive).  

 

6. Congratulations! If you have followed the elimination process above all you need to do now is to put your perfect clothes back into your freshly organized wardrobe, on your new hangers, adjusted, rods, new shelves, boxes, baskets or drawers and You will feel an absolute runner’s high from having  it clean and organized, trust me! 

 7.  You should keep it a habit to de-clutter your wardrobe at least once a year and it helps to keep it neat and tidy.

 

If you wish to read more about de-cluttering and improving your wardrobe, these are some interesting books:

  • 168 Feng Shui ways to Declutter your Home by Lillian Too
  • The Lucky Shopping Manual Building and improving your wardrobe by Andrea Linett and Kim France
  • The Style ChecklistThe Ultimate Wardrobe Essentials for your  by Lloyd Boston
  • Clutter BustingLetting go of what’s holding you back by Brooks Palmer
  • Clutter, Chaos & the Cure  by Rosemary Chieppo and Ernie Conte
  • The Clutter Diet – The Skinny on organizing your home and taking control of your life by Lorie Marrero

Reorganise your Closet!

9 Oct

Personal Note: “Reorganising your closet it a big task and a huge topic. I tried to limit myself to the important points and hope you’ll get inspired to rethink your storage habits.

 In my next posts I will show you how easy it is to make your own beautiful storage boxes. So, stay tuned and have a happy and wonderful day!”   Beate

 

Reorganise your Closet!

 

Your closet should be a source of joy and inspiration since it is the place you go each morning to prepare yourself for a new day. Before you de-clutter your wardrobe, re-think and reorganise your closet to make better use of the existing space!

Before you take everything out, open the doors and have a good look at the shelves, rods and dividers. Is it functional? Is it working for you and your items? Is it practical? Does it give you enough space?  Can you reach the most frequently used items easily? Can you see or know where most items are, or are things hiding behind other stuff, on piles, in un-labeled boxes or cluttered drawers? Are your coat hangers overloaded?

Look at your closet with fresh eyes and take some photos of the existing situation. Glue them into a little notebook “My Closet” and start sketching your ideal closet system. Take and note measurements of the length of hanging clothes, of existing boxes or baskets you want to re-use, spaces that need more storage containers. Can you add more shelves? Can you heighten or lower or add or take out hanging rods. Can you combine shorter and longer clothes and group differently? Is it dark in your closet? Can you paint the inside in a light colour or add some lighting? How does it smell? Can you add hooks, hanging fabric compartments, drawers, baskets, boxes or specialized tie or belt racks? Where do you keep your lingerie, your shoes, your handbags, your scarves, your belts, your hats tight now?  Can you colour-coordinate your closet for a more un-cluttered look? Do you need new and better quality cloth hangers?

Take time to think about, how you could improve your existing space. Get out some storage solution books from your local library, surf the internet for tips or take some time to visit shops and see what clever solutions are out there to suit your budget. Take or cut out ideas from magazines, furniture catalogues, or get creative by making your own boxes, labels, drawer dividers and so on. If you have to buy new storage systems and items, wait for bargains and specials or invest in it step by step. Take your notebook with you each time you go shopping and add notes the moment you see something interesting or inspiring.

Make it you personal project, create a plan and a to-do list!  Sometimes ideas and solutions take time…

Here are some tips to get the space right:

  • Ideally you want some kind of system to hide the majority of your clothing, shoes and accessories behind closed doors.

 

  • Limit the number of hanging rods to the amount of clothes you really need to hang and consider their heights in relation to the groups of clothes (blouses and tops, dresses, coats, skirts, pants…)

 

  • Fill the rest of the space with shelves, drawers, baskets or add a ready-made tower system.

 

  • Invest in solid wooden or good quality hangers (wait for that special or buy step by step) or find some practical plastic hangers (often boutiques sell their well designed hangers in bundles for a couple of dollars) and keep with the same type or brand for a cleaner, more organized look.

 

  • Use peg hangers for trousers and skirts, instead of holding them by their hanging loops or hang trousers over a foam or fabric covered bar hanger.

 

  • Some good pairs of wooden or padded plastic shoe trees keep your shoes in shape. If on a tight budget, use newspaper.

 

  • Store shoes either on a shelf, in their original boxes (you might glue a photo on the front), in clear plastic shoe boxes (buy on the internet or storage shops) or in the new calico hanging bags that have little compartments. Maybe you can create an extra shoe shelf in the laundry, under the stairs or buy a special shoe cupboard for the entrance area, which looks good and hides the shoes nicely. Maybe have drawers on wheels made with compartments for your shoes to fit under your bed.

 

  • Reorganising is also the time to clean your entire closet, the shelves, drawers, baskets and boxes.

 

  • Vacuum packing is now widely available.  Bags with a special round rubber holes that allows the vacuum cleaner nozzle to be inserted in, to suck out all the air, are practical to store clothes not used all the time (winter or summer, Wedding etc).

 

  • Reserve the hard to reach space at the top of your closet things you don’t’ need often.  (I have a little wooden stool in my closet to quickly reach the top shelves, if I need to).

 

  • Use the space on the inside of your closet doors and install hooks, racks or  fabric organizers to hold ties, scarves, belts, umbrellas, gloves, etc.  

 

I really enjoyed the planning time, when we renovated our house and created a new built-in closet behind sliding doors. Because it is very small (only 2.20m wide and I have to share the space with my husband, I had to organize it properly (and get rid of clutter!) to fit everything in there.

Here is one of my first sketches:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you wish to read more about reorganising your closet, these are some interesting books:

  • 168 Feng Shui ways to Declutter your Home by Lillian Too
  • The Western Guide to Feng ShuiCreating Balance, Harmony and Prosperity in your Environment by Terah Kathryn Collins
  • StorageStylish solutions for every room in your home by Joanna Copestick & Meryl Lloyd
  • Complete Home StorageGetting organized by Barbara J. Braasch & Lisa Stockwell Kessler
  • Simple Storage Solutions – effective storage, drawers & cupboards… by Elizabeth Hillliard
  • 101 Ideas for Bedrooms – ideas, facts, expert solutions by Suzanne Davy

Does Clutter block your Energy?

6 Oct

Time to de-clutter and re-organise your space!

Every once in a while I come home and feel, I can’t breathe anymore, I feel tired and overwhelmed by the things around me. Unfortunately my creative nature and my interest in many different things, a soccer mad husband an old lazy cat and an eleven year old son, who collects everything he finds, don’t allow for a Minimalistic Style in my home.  But when the clutter starts to suppress my energy, I know it is time to spring-clean and reorganise my house. In Feng Shui it is believed, that blocked energy vibrations of the home have a negative effect on its residents’ well-being. That’s exactly what I feel! Energy should move freely from the entrance into the home and from one room to the next.

Changing your home from cluttered to clean does require some effort and time. Luckily, the payoff is worth it – a neat, orderly house that makes coming home the best part of the day. A new sense of peace and harmony can be found, stress diminishes and one finds a feeling of relief at being ‘back in control’.

It’s time to de-clutter your home!

De-cluttering your home is not about taking everything that has been hoarded for years and relegating it to the tip. It is more of a reorganising and decision making process. It can even be a joyous and fun activity and sometimes memories and forgotten items come to hand.

Personally, I start with writing a to-do list with all the tasks needed and then I work on it room by room or cupboard by cupboard. And then there is the wardrobe… (I will give you some tips on that in a separate post!)

How to do it in 14 easy steps:

1. Kitchen Cupboards – Go through all you kitchen cupboards, one at a time and you will be amazed at what you find that can be thrown out, because you never use it. Check all food packages, liquids, supplements and spices for their expiration dates.

2. Wardrobe – I am always surprised about the amount of clothes I get rid of (and how many I still have) when I clean out my closets! (Find details in an up-coming separate post!)

3. Bookcases – I really love books, but when they don’t fit in my bookshelf anymore, it is time to sort them out. I sell or donate the ones that I don’t want or need anymore. I also go through papers, magazines, or anything else filling up those bookcases. I like to organize my books by colours as this is the first thing I remember, when I look for a certain book. I cut out interesting articles or recipes from magazines and papers, and the rest goes in the paper bin. I like to keep glossy magazines for Kids Art classes, Craft workshops, Goal setting posters, card making or Collage art.     

4. Kids Room – This is something that needs to be done more than once a year in my house.  My son has to go through his clothes, toys, books, etc and out goes anything he is no longer interested in or what doesn’t fit anymore. Sometimes he tops-up his pocket money by selling his stuff in a Garage Sale or on Trade Me (similar to E-bay) or we just donate it for a good cause.  

5. Bathroom – We know how cluttered and overflowing those vanities and medicine chests can get. Go through all those goodies, check their expiration dates and get rid of what’s too old, hardened, softened or changed colour. Make a shopping list to replace important medicines or items.

6. Linen Closet – Towels, sheets, curtains, etc are also things that need to be sorted out from time to time. We use matching towel sets in a different colour for each family member. So, we always know which towel to use and I know straight away, who left his towel on the floor! I like to cut-up and re-use old towels, bed linen, sheets and t-shirts in my art studio and I keep a big box of them in the laundry for all sorts of cleaning projects (soccer shoes, bicycles, skateboards…)

7. Under your bed – Personally I don’t like to store anything under beds or behind doors. According to Feng Shui principles, that’s were negative energy gets stuck.

8. Organise – There are so many great storage products out there. Or get some inexpensive plastic boxes with lid and neatly store all your items that are not in display or used daily, old photos and letters, toys that you want to keep but don’t get used that often or even your summer or winter clothes. You can get small boxes in the Dollar Stores to organize CDs, use them in your pantry or cupboards to store small bits and bobs. If you are not a fan of plastic, you can recycle old shoe boxes (paint or cover them with beautiful gift wrap or wallpaper), use glass jars, packaging, bags etc to store things or get creative and make your own storage organizers!

9. Throw out the old – Do not just take everything out and rearrange. That is a temporary solution and is not sufficient. Instead throw away, recycle, sell or donate the things, you can live without.

10. Papers and Documents – Never touch a piece of paper more than once. This sounds extreme, but it works. File items immediately or throw in the paper bin before they pile up. I love beautiful, well organized files and folders in different colours, practical divider systems and proper labeling (easy to do on the computer with Word or Graphic software). That saves a lot of time searching for documents.  

11. Display items – Deal with display items. If your collections, craft fair buys or family heirlooms are turning into a nightmare, do a major purge. First, remove all non-functional items from every surface of your house. Next, lay everything out where you can really see it. Get rid of anything redundant and just display the most important and beautiful things. The rest can go in a storage box for a while!

12. Have a keepsake drawer or basket – When those special drawings come home from school, certificates, photos, invitations, vouchers…put it right into the basket. Periodically, make a fun family event out of unloading the box and let everybody decides what to keep.

13. Everything in its Place – Once you have everything de-cluttered and organised, get everyone to keep everything in its place and your home will remain beautiful forever! Yeah, right – nice dream!

14. De-clutter on a regular base – I do it minimum once a year and I have to admit, I enjoy it. . Choose a time, when you are not stressed out or your life is a bit more relaxed, like in the holidays. I love to do these tasks in spring, when I can open all windows and doors and the first warmth of the sun enters my rooms.

If you wish to read more about Feng Shui, De-cluttering and reorganizing your space, these are some interesting books:

  • 168 Feng Shui ways to Declutter your Home by Lillian Too
  • The Western Guide to Feng ShuiCreating Balance, Harmony and Prosperity in your Environment by Terah Kathryn Collins
  • StorageStylish solutions for every room in your home by Joanna Copestick & Meryl Lloyd
  • Complete Home StorageGetting organized by Barbara J. Braasch & Lisa Stockwell Kessler
Personal Note: “I hope you enjoy my Blog with a variety of topics close to my heart.  I added some NEW LINKS to other interesting websites.   
In my up-coming posts I will talk about de-cluttering and reorganizing your wardrobe and some related, easy to follow craft projects. So, stay tuned and have a happy and wonderful day!”   Beate

Would you be prepared if a Disaster happened? – Part III

4 Oct

Emergency Survival

Part 1: The Getaway Kit

Part 2: Emergency Survival Items

Part 3: Emergency Plan

Part 3: Household Emergency Plan

After the Christchurch Earthquake a part of Henry’s homework was to fill out the printed Household Emergency Plan, downloaded from the New Zealand Ministry of Civil Defence website: www.getthru.govt.nz .

It includes some very interesting and important questions.

 

The first question was: “If we can’t get home or contact each other we will meet or leave a message at: ….”  Have you ever thought about where to meet your family members, if you survive a natural disaster? We had never thought or talked about is before! This point gave us a long discussion at the dinner table and finally we all agreed to meet at Henry’s Primary School, which is close to our house and also functions as an Emergency Centre.

 We decided that the person responsible for collecting the children and checking the survival items would be me (Mum). To find out the Radio frequencies and stations we had to visit the Civil Defence website again, which links to each website of the most popular Radio Stations in New Zealand. After we filled in the information, the plan goes on with recommendations, what to do in an emergency situation. It was really good to talk through the scenario in detail (what would we do first?….) with the whole family, so that each member has an idea and can stay cool in a housefire, earthquake or Tsunami warning situation.

Point 7 of the list asks for names, address and phone numbers of your closest neighbours. To be honest, I didn’t even know all names or phone numbers of my three closest neighbours. So I had to do a bit of research to do on this part, too.

And finally this action plan has a space at the bottom, where you can draw a rough sketch of your home and mark the best shelter places in case of an earthquake, the possible exits and where to turn off the water, electricity and gas supply.

I had a real house plan handy, that I reduced in size to A4 and I let Henry mark the important spots in different colours (and add a legend). This house plan makes the first page in our Emergency file (Getaway Kit), that I prepared earlier and described in Part 1 of this Blog. The completed form “Household Emergency Plan” comes second and the Emergency Checklist with the list of survival items comes third in our file.     

Personally I think this was the best homework, my son Henry ever had in six years! It kept us busy for a week, but it feels very good to be prepared (just in case….)

Are you prepared?

 

 

 

Would you be prepared if a Disaster happened? – Part II

3 Oct

Emergency Survival

Part 1: The Getaway Kit

Part 2: Emergency Survival Items

Part 3: Emergency Plan

Part 2: Emergency Survival Items

 When I looked at the list of Emergency Survival items recommended by the NZ Ministry of Civil Defence, which is downloadable and printable from their website www.getthru.govt.nz I quickly realized, that we were definitely not prepared for a Natural Disaster! I knew I had some of the items somewhere in my house, our First Aid Kit was a far cry from being complete, all torches I could find, had missing batteries or were taken apart by my son (in an attempt to become a scientist one day) and other supplies on the list I just didn’t have.

Household Emergency Checklist by NZ Ministry of Civil Defence – Page 1

 

And again I decided, that has to change and I want my family to be prepared (just in case…)

First of all I had to decide where to store all Survival items, so that in an Emergency we all know what is there and where they are. I choose the laundry, because I could easily reorganise it to free some space and it is located right next to our entrance door.

Starting to work through the list of survival items, I got stuck at the very first point. The Ministry recommends storing 3 liters of bottled drinking water per person per day. It sounded like a lot to me, but the Earthquake in Christchurch on 4th September showed, that many areas of the city were cut off the water supply for several days, in other areas they were only allowed to use the water after boiling it for three minutes (another problem if your power is cut off). With the earthquake in mind I bought three 10 liter containers of drinking water in the supermarket and marked the used by date (approx. 1 year) with a permanent marker on the front.  Before that date, I will buy new containers and use these ones for drinking.

Next on the list was water for washing and cooking and that reminded me of the huge plastic tank I bought two years ago for my garden and it is sitting there (un-used) ever since. Plan was to connect it to the rainwater pipe from the garage roof and use the water for gardening. A good task for my plumber husband’s to-do list!

Non-perishable food (canned or dried) and a can opener (made sense) was next on the list. Henry and me had a fun day at the supermarket, walking through the aisles to decide what was practical and what was storable for a while, not too heavy to transport and easy to prepare. We went for some bags of nuts, muesli bars, soup packets, crackers, a packet of homogenized milk, coffee powder (for the addiction) and some other foods. I still think it is a good idea, even if you can stay in your house in case of an emergency, but are not able to buy anything (no power, no eftpos, no credit cards, all shops closed). Again you have to check the used-by dates and maybe replace the food once in a while.

The next suggestion on the list was a gas cooker, what also made sense in case of having no power or gas supplies to cook anything (not even be able to boil the water). I researched on the internet and found a variety of small, easy to carry gas cookers (mainly for outdoors and camping). I ordered one with 6 small gas canisters. Also on the internet I found face masks with ear loops (N95 made by M3) which can be used for Bird Flu, pandemic outbreaks and protects against airborne particles. I bought a radio, which works with batteries, power and a dynamo technique. You turn a hand crank for about five minutes to charge an internal battery. This radio can be used as a torch, a clock and an emergency alarm at the same time. Two smaller dynamo torches, spare batteries, toilet paper and large rubbish bags (as emergency toilet), three cheap plastic rain coats, some silver foil rescue blankets also went into my shopping cart.

Then Henry and I added some items, that we personally thought (watching the Christchurch Earthquake news every day), would be handy:

Our list included plastic goggles (to protect against volcanic ashes), a whistle (to alert for help),  notebook and pen (to make notes from radio messages), matches and candles (in case of power failure), a compass, plastic sheets and duct tape (to make shelter), a box of rubber gloves and some pairs of leather work gloves (if you have to dig for survivors), water purification drops (to prepare drinking water) and the little hand trolley in the garage, which would be very handy in case we have to leave the house and take these things with us.  We would also take our Getaway Kit (bag with documents I explained in my former Blog – Part 1), a small bag with soap, tooth brushes and sanitary items.

And then there was my First Aid Kit, which was in desperate need of an up-grade, since Henry’s last stunts on the skateboard ramp. I organized new antiseptic liquid and cream, a variety of plasters, tape, a better pair of scissors and tweezers and some packets of pain-killers suitable for adults and kids.

It was a big task to work through the list, to do a lot of research and I even had to spend some money. But I was happy to get it all organized (just in case…) and Henry was happy with the progress of his homework assignment.

My next Blog and Part 3 of the Emergency Survival Tips will include the Household Emergency Plan.

So, stay tuned….

Would you be prepared if a Disaster happened? – Part I

2 Oct

Emergency Survival 

Part 1: The Getaway Kit 

Part 2: Emergency Survival Items 

Part 3: Emergency Plan 

Part 1: The Getaway Kit

After the Christchurch Earthquake in September, my son Henry got a homework assignment to fill out the published and downloadable Household Emergency Checklist and Emergency Plan from the New Zealand Ministry of Civil Defence www.getthru.govt.nz . What a great and practical homework!  Henry and I dived straight into the task! It didn’t take a lot of research to find out, that my family was not prepared for any disaster at all.  And the Earthquake could easily have happened in Auckland… 

Here is the Household Emergency list: 

Household Emergency Checklist by NZ Ministry of Civil Defence - Page 1

 

You might not be able to read the details in the checklist. But here is the link: http://www.getthru.govt.nz/web/GetThru.nsf/web/BOWN-7GYTRQ?OpenDocument 

When we started to fill out the printed Checklist, first we entered our address, home phone and all our mobile numbers, then other important phone numbers  besides 111, like our local council and Insurance Companies. 

 But what worried me most was the “Getaway Kit”. 

The Getaway Kit

The Ministry of Civil Defence recommends that every household should have a small bag with important documents for a Getaway Kit, ready for evacuation.  

This homework task showed me that even  in case of a house fire, I wouldn’t be able to rescue our most important documents, because they were all in different places, files, drawers, boxes and cupboards. 

And that was going to change! It took me several days to organise everything, but finally I have one bag (a spare Laptop bag) which includes a well organised file with all our passports, Birth Certificates, Photos of all family members, an address and telephone list of the extended family and friends here in New Zealand and overseas, the originals of all Insurance Policies (I made copies for the office files like car, house, life, content etc.),  ownership documents and plans of our house, info and numbers of all bank accounts, IRD numbers, our last financial Statement, ownership documents of our cars, Health Certificates with blood types and Vaccinations, International Drivers Licenses, a Will and other important and hard to get again papers. The first page of the file shows a plan of our house and where to turn off the Gas, Water and Power supplies in an Emergency.   

Thinking about a house fire or a natural disaster, it was hard to decide, what else I would really like to keep, if I could only take this one bag. 

I made my decision and I placed in the bag some pieces of jewellery, some small, very personal items, a few photos of my grandparents and my parents, the external hard drive (or USB stick) where I save all computer files on a regular base (since my computer crashed a few years ago and I lost everything) and some money. The Christchurch Earthquake showed that most shops couldn’t use eftpos or credit cards for several days. So, good old cash was very important to get food or petrol.  

My bag also includes a notebook and pens, a small camera and that’s it. In case of survival that  bag would make my life so much easier afterwards. Everybody in my family knows which bag it is and where it is placed. In case of a house fire or Emergency one of us can just grab it on our way out! And that’s a very good feeling (just in case…).  

So much for now.  In my next blog I will comment on the other Civil Defence recommended Emergency Survival Items  and a small list of things, that we added to it.