what Should I eat with diverticulosis?

A quick note before I begin. I was going to talk about Fiber and how it helps prevent someone from getting Diverticulosis in the first place. However, I have been studying this topic for over a week now and there are very conflicting opinions, and test results for fiber as a preventative to getting Diverticulosis, and whether it may actually increase one’s risk of getting Diverticulosis. For that reason the fiber issue, here, will only be discussed in relation to people who already have Diverticulosis.

If you want to learn more about preventing Diverticulosis discuss with your doctor about a diet that would be best. Studies are showing that a job where you sit a lot may actually be the highest risk factor for getting Diverticulosis. More about activity in a later post So, what if you already have Diverticulosis? What should you eat? Well, some of that is a loaded topic because it probably will depend on some other factors such as other illnesses, medications, activity level, etc. But, in general if you have Diverticulosis your doctor most likely is going to advise that you avoid processed foods, eat a more plant-based lifestyle, and of course increase your fiber intake. Be sure you drink enough water, or you may end up constipated from too much fiber. This goes for anyone who eats a high fiber diet. Start slow, don’t go from 10 grams of fiber per day to 50, your gut will not be happy at all.

How much Fiber? First let me say you need to know how much fiber you are already consuming, before you decide if you need to eat more. A food diary, for a week or so, will help you decide that. Be accurate and consistent with your food dietary intake. There are apps that can help you. I use one called Track-Nutrition Calculator. If you are a female under age 50, and have Diverticulosis 25 grams of fiber, if over 50 then 21 grams of fiber per day. If you are a male under age 50, and have Diverticulosis 38 grams of fiber, if over 50 years of age 30 grams of fiber. These number recommendations are from 2012, so they may be different, or the same in 2021.

Why is Fiber Important for Diverticulosis? It keeps food and waste moving through the digestive system, not allowing backups and waste from getting into the pouches in the intestines that define Diverticulosis. It is when these pouches get food, or waste in them, that they become inflame or infected causing Diverticulitis. If you have a bout of Diverticulitis you will be told to eat a low fiber diet. That is for next week ‘s topic.

Foods High in Fiber: Fruits and Vegetables are going to be your first thought most likely. There are other foods high in fiber, that are also plant-based such as: beans, peas, nuts, seeds, legumes, brown and wild rice, whole grain breads, whole wheat or whole grain pasta. Get used to reading labels and calculating fiber per serving. Most processed, and fast food options are going to be very low in fiber if it has any at all.

I know I say this in almost every blog post that has to do with diet modification: learn to cook and eat more at home, then out. It is cheaper and healthier. You can control the fat, sodium, sugar, and fiber of each meal you eat. Check out Meals with Melissa, if you need help with meal planning, cooking, prepping, etc. If you have any other medical issues that require diet modification, be sure and speak to your health care provider before making any drastic changes to your diet.


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day 8: Just a Quickie!

Hello, and Happy Wednesday! Today is one of those crazy kind of days. I am sure you have had them. I am trying to get everything done before I head to my Ortho appt, and then grocery shop after. It will be a late night getting home, and I honestly do not know what I will eat for dinner. It will probably be a salad, or chicken sandwich. A couple of updates from yesterday’s post. I needed more calories, and I found in my cupboard the Save A Lot brand of Strawberry Fig Newtons. I love these! I think I got them at Save A Lot, lol. I had three, and they added about 200 calories to my day. They also fit my fat requirements. My husband liked the low fat mac n cheese, but my daughter did not. This zero point food/very low fat food challenge will end next Tuesday. I will then concentrate on Brain Health.

I will not add all the nutrition info today, because I simply don’t have time. I am at a 2 pound weight loss for the 8 days so far.

Breakfast: 2 slices of Thomas Cinnamon bread with just about a tsp of my whipped butter between the two slices, and coffee of course. Each slice of bread has 1.5 grams of total fat.

Lunch: I am having a one cup serving of the low fat mac n cheese, leftover from last night, to hold me over to dinner. I have some green beans, and sweet corn mixed in with a 1/2 tbsp of whipped butter for heating. I ran out of milk. I am also having 10-15 green grapes.

Dinner: Don’t have a clue yet, lol. It will be late.

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20 minute Distance reiki sessions for stress management, relaxation, healing energy

I am finally getting to updating my Wellness Plans. As I had mentioned in May I am focusing more on the Wellness part of my Health Coaching certificate, rather than one on one coaching sessions. This is more targeted, and I think more helpful since the market is already flooded with Health Coaching. Please read all the way through, and ask questions if needed. You can purchase by using the Paypal button, but be aware that this is not an instant access type plan. I do work outside the home, and have other commitments. Please allow 24 hours from time of purchase for me to respond to you. My Paypal is 20 years old, and is in my husband’s name, but he has no access to it, nor does he even know how to use Paypal.

What is Reiki? Reiki is a energy healing therapy. I do not advertise it as a cure to anything. To heal something can mean many things to many people. For the purpose of my Reiki sessions, to heal will be defined as to bring into balance. Reiki can be used for many things but stress management, and relaxation are probably the most popular. It can also be used to manage pain. When the body is out of balance different manifestations of illness can occur. I am a level 2 Reiki Practitioner. Any paying customer will have access to see my certificate. Distance Reiki can be performed anywhere and any time that the practitioner sets aside. You do not even have to do anything for the Reiki session. You can be lying down, sitting, or even at work. Some people may have some knowledge of Reiki already, and for the purposes of my Reiki practice, I call on my Christian God to provide me with healing energy that I transfer to you through hand positions. Please be aware of this before you purchase a Reiki session from me. During the session I move my hands into Reiki positions while I concentrate on your energy to bring you back into balance. That is the easiest way for me to explain it. Sessions are 20 minutes in length, but they can be shorter or longer. You can always email me with questions, before purchasing, by using the contact form at the end of the post.

If you decide to purchase a Distance Reiki session from me, the next steps will be as follows:

  1. Within 24 hours of Paypal notifying me that a purchase has been made I will contact you via the Paypal email provided on the receipt. This email will be a welcome email and will request that you set up a meet and greet via email, Zoom, or Facebook Messenger. In that meet and greet we will discuss your intentions for your session, and you will get to know me a little better. I do need to see what you look like, either via Zoom or a picture, for Distance Reiki to work. I will ask some basic, private questions, about any medical issues you may have, and you will need to sign a form allowing me to perform Distance Reiki on you. Then you can make an appointment for your session, or you can decide it isn’t for you and your money will be refunded.
  2. Once I have completed your Reiki session I will send you a follow up email. You may not even notice anything, especially the first time, or you may have experienced something intense. We will discuss this. You can then decide to purchase more sessions, or to end our relationship for Distance Reiki.
  3. Please note Distance Reiki can be performed on any consenting adult over age 18. If a parent wants to give consent for a child that will be noted on the agreement. Distance Reiki can also be performed on pets like at 4th of July for pets scared of fireworks. I will need to see a picture of the pet. You must be able to read, write, and or speak English. I do not know any other languages at this time.
  4. All of my files are kept for 2 years and then destroyed.


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day 7: Low Fat macaroni and cheese

Hello to all of my happy readers! Today is day 7 of my Zero Points Food Challenge, which is sort of based off of the WW Zero Point Food List. You can read the rules for my challenge, here. I do my meal plans monthly, but I have had to change this month around a bit to accommodate the challenge. I have had no red meat at all in 7 days, and honestly I am OK with that since with CKD I don’t eat much red meat anyways. Where I live it is hard to get low fat cheese, except Mozzarella, but I was able to go to Publix and find some Low Fat Cheddar cheese. You may see affiliate links in this post.

Today was a weird day of eating for me, so far. I was starving when I got up but didn’t really have time to eat anything. So, it was just coffee, but by lunch it was so hot and humid I didn’t feel like salad, or cooking, lol. See below to see what I have, and will eat today. You can see images of the items below. If you have a website and you need a sponsor, check this out.

Breakfast: Just coffee with my Premier Protein creamer. I do not count drinks in my nutrition info.

Lunch: I just wanted something light and I wanted to try the Cabot cheese that I was going to use in my mac n cheese tonight. My husband also needs a low fat diet, though he hates it, but this cheese has a really good flavor. The texture is off a little probably bc of low fat, but I think the half and half will make it creamy. I also had the Good and Gather bitesize Everything Crackers. I was very surprised at how awesome these are. I had one ounce of the cheese, 7 crackers so it fit the 3 grams or less of fat per serving, and then I made 2 cups of air popped popcorn topped with 1/2 tbsp of the Land O Lakes whipped butter.

Dinner: Will be Butterball Turkey Cutlets, 3 ounces for me. I do not use oil, or any fats to cook right now. 1/2 cup or 1 cup of green beans. For the macaroni and cheese I will be making a whole box of elbow macaroni which is 8 servings, add 7 ounces of the Cabot low fat cheddar cheese, and 8 ounces of the Land O Lakes Half and Half. The whole dish, according to my calculator has 2,220 calories, which equals 277 calories per 1/2 cup serving. At the 1/2 cup serving size it is only 5 grams of Fat. So, technically I could have a whole cup for 10 grams of total fat. Add some hot pepper flakes to spice it up while cooking. I will let you know if my husband approves.

Nutrition Info: May not be exact.

Calories: 606 calories

Total Fat: 13 grams

Saturated Fat: 5.1 grams

Cholesterol: 80 mg

Sodium: 912 mg

Total Carbs: 72 grams

Net Carbs: 64.5 grams This is a nice lower carb day for me

Protein: 51 grams This is the highest I go on protein, so if I need a snack it will have to be low in protein, probably fruit, which will add carbs and boost my calories, but I have room. Yesterday I did not have to add anything. What I ate was perfect and satisfying. If you would like to learn more about any of my Wellness Plans, use the contact form after all of the images to email me.

My food tracker app is way off on Phosphorus in foods, by like a lot. So, if you track your Phosphorus due to CKD, I recommend the website Eat This Much. It is way more accurate.

Do you have Chronic Pain from CKD, or other illness? Talk to your doctor about CBD Gummies.


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Taking a one day pause from the zero point food challenge

Today, I am taking a pause from the challenge. I am experiencing some GI upset, most likely from the fat free, and sugar free food items I have been eating. I have said this before when they remove fat from foods, they have to add other things to make it taste good and these things include sugar substitutes, among other things. I could also be getting too much Phosphorus. So, I am taking 24 hours off, and see how I feel tomorrow. I may have to make adjustments to the challenge as it isn’t worth getting sick over. Come back tomorrow to see what I conclude. In the meantime you can check out some awesome products that I have started to be an affiliate for.

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Day 3 zero point food/very low fat food challenge

This is hard, lol! I have figured up everything I have, and will eat for today. I need at least 20 more grams of protein without adding fat, salt, or sugar to the daily count. Good grief! Since it is a work day I will hope they have something appropriate at work. They allow us to eat. I will have to let you know tomorrow what I did. Be sure to read day 1, and the trial run I did, to learn why and how I am doing this. I did not lose any weight today, but I ate a ton of carbs yesterday. I was kind of worried about that when I started this challenge, but that will be for the end to talk about. I did have a serving of my pretzels last night.

Today’s foods are low calorie, and low fat. Please remember I don’t track drinks, you can read about why in the trial run I did last weekend.

What I ate today:

Breakfast: My favorite breakfast now green grapes, strawberries, a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar, and 1 tbsp of Cool Whip.

Lunch: Ok, this technically was a 1/2 gram over my fat limit, but I needed to use these up and my daughter wanted some, so I had a half of the Banquet Chicken Patties, on top of an Aunt Millie’s min sub roll, with 1 tsp of the light Hellman’s mayo. Then I had tomatoes, and cucumbers with some Hidden Valley Ranch dry seasoning one serving. The roll added a nice amount of carbs to get me through the day.

Dinner: I put the other half of the Banquet patty in my thermos chopped up, with 1 cup of Happy Harvest creamed corn, and 1 cup of Dishd plain mashed potatoes.

I also take a half of a multivitamin with a fattier meal.


Calories: 744

Total Fat: 17 grams

Saturated Fat: 3.7 grams

Total Carbs: 134 grams

Net Carbs: 123 grams

Cholesterol: 25 mg

Sodium: 1894 mg This is below my target of 2000 mg per day

Please remember to read day 1, and subsequent days as to the rules, and to see pics of items. I tend to use the same items and I don’t add pics of nutrition each time.


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day 5: elderly, pets, and emergency numbers

Today, is the last day of Hurricane Preparedness Week, here on Health Buddy Melissa. Tomorrow will start my Zero Points Food Challenge that will run for two weeks. It is the June Health Challenge. Be sure and come back tomorrow to read the particulars, and maybe even join in the fun! You can also check out my post from Saturday where I discussed the trial run of the challenge.

Below you will find two videos on Hurricane Prep for the elderly and pets. The elderly are very vulnerable in a storm, especially since they may not want to leave their home, and may not be adequately prepared. You can not make people be prepared, but hopefully with encouragement they will. Pets are vulnerable for obvious reasons. We have domesticated them, and they are helpless. In the video she has bought booties for her dog. I don’t think that would be a priority for me, but I definitely would have some kind of first aid cream and maybe Vaseline for their paws if needed. My dog went nuts when she squeaked the toy, lol.

This website has a ton of information about numbers, websites, and even apps that you will want to have on handy during Hurricane Season. I will definitely be looking at these apps, and keeping the numbers. The first part of the article is local info for that county, so scroll down to get all of the other goodies.


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i am doing a zero point food challenge!

Hello, and Happy Saturday! If you are on my Mailchimp mailing list then you already knew that I was going to do a Zero Point Food Challenge. It will begin on this coming Tuesday, and go for two weeks, but I thought I would just give a preview of what a day of eating might look like. I have been researching, reading, and watching Youtube videos of other people who have done this challenge. It is obviously based off of WW Zero Point Food List. I won’t go into all of the details now, but there are specific reasons as to why I chose this challenge, and I have some thoughts on the concept. But, that is all for Tuesday. I can tell you my challenge will not look exactly like WW. First of all I am not a member of WW so I can not speak to how their program really works. I can only go by information I have found online, my research, and what my nutritional needs are. So, this will be a Melissa Zero Point Food Challenge! Come back Tuesday! For now, this is what I will eat for today, Saturday 6/5/2021. It is a lot of images, and I will explain each meal. The pictures will show the nutrition info also. I do not count drinks, and I will explain why on Tuesday.

Breakfast: 10 green grapes, 1/2 of a medium banana, cinnamon sugar small sprinkle, and 1 tbsp. Cool Whip, not fat free. It isn’t necessary and I will explain why on Tuesday. By my calculation these are all zero point foods.

Lunch: 3.3 oz of Pork Tenderloin with Paprika, Pepper, and Basil Herbed Salt baked at 350 for 35 minutes. This is the leanest pork you can buy with only 3 grams of fat per serving, which is actually 4 ounces, and I only am eating 3.3 ounces. I sprayed the bottom of the pan with spray Olive Oil. On the side I cut up 6 cherry tomatoes and sprinkled with salt.

Dinner: Since this is a work day it will be a thermos meal, either cold or hot. I decided to do hot today. For dinner I will have 2 ounces of the Pork Tenderloin left over from lunch, a 1/2 cup of the mashed potatoes shown below, and 1/2 cup of the Happy Harvest creamed corn. I mix it all together and since I am using creamed corn there is no need for butter or gravy. If you look at the labels you will see the fat content per serving definitely makes them a free food. Some of these are packaged so the ingredient list may not be great. But, I am using what I have in the house, leftovers, or whatever is affordable. Since no one else in my house is doing the challenge I have to work around them as well.

According to my food tracking app this is the Nutrition data for the whole day.

Calories: 583

Total Fat: 10 grams or 26% of RDA this is very low fat

Saturated Fat: 3.5 grams or 29% of RDA

Sodium: 914 mg this is a very low sodium day

Total Carbs: 74 grams. I typically allow 100 grams per day in food

Net Carbs: 65.6 grams because of 8.4 grams of Fiber

Protein: 50 grams that is my limit for the day with CKD.

Phosphorus: 486 mg

Potassium: 1658 mg

I also take a 1/2 tablet of a multi vitamin, but I do not include that in the nutrition app until the end of the day, because it skews my thoughts on what I am actually eating. I know this seams like not enough calories, and it isn’t, so I will have to figure out a snack that is low fat, and I don’t want anymore large amounts of protein or salt. I would also rather my carbs did not go over a 100 for the day. I will let you know tomorrow what I chose to add as right now I don’t know. You also have to consider that I do not track drinks. Times that I have tracked drinks, I may get an extra 100 to 150 calories from my daily drinks. Zero Point foods are not meant to be a whole diet on WW. They are meant to build your meals around. OK, so that is all I am going to say for now. Come back on Tuesday to read the full reasoning, and how I will do it, and track it, plus what I eat in a day, and results at the end.


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Day 4: How to put your kit together and trial of my zero points food challenge!

Hello, Friday! Today, is a dual post because I want to continue updating and targeting old coaching plans. What do you think of my new logo, and color palette? I have to work this weekend, so I am trying to get a lot done in one day. You may see affiliate links in this post. Be sure to read my other posts on Hurricane Preparedness.

Today, is day 4 of Hurricane Prep Week. I thought I would share a video on how to put your Hurricane Kit together. Having everything in one location, especially if you are new to hurricanes, just makes life easier. A couple of things about the video. As she states preparing for any disaster is important, not just hurricanes, and these kits can be for any disaster. She mentioned the hand crank radio with the solar charger. These chargers according to ones I have looked at take a long time to charge and may damage your cell phone. Be sure to read the specifics and pick one that is safer. Also, hand crank radios really take a lot of cranking to work. I do not find them efficient at all. We do have walkie talkies that we have not used in years, but we have them if we need them. Having a police scanner, imo, is way more effective than a crank radio. Also, the water purification tablets. I did not mention these, but if you are evacuating you probably will not need these, but they can come in handy for rain water collection, or if you absolutely had to drink from other water sources. You can always boil water for 10 minutes to sanitize it, which is not always convenient. She also mentions being trained in First Aide. I also have mentioned this in other posts, and I can not say how important it is for everyone to be trained in First Aide. The video is below.

Tomorrow I am starting a trial run of my Zero Points Food Challenge. I will share at least one meal, or snack tomorrow and Sunday. Come back on Tuesday to read all about the challenge and why and how I will be doing it. If you would like any information on any of my Wellness Plans, be sure and use the contact form at the end of the post to email me.


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day 3: things you may not think of when preparing for a hurricane

Welcome back to Hurricane Preparedness Week! I hope everyone is doing well. We actually had measurable rain yesterday for the first time in like 6 weeks. When you live in a tropical area you do not think you will have weeks without rain, but it happens, especially the last 5 years or so. You may see affiliate links in this post.

Today, I want to discuss some things you may not think of when preparing for a Tropical System. Whether you are evacuating, or staying put, food and water are not the only concerns though those seem to be what people are most concerned with. I know you may not think of some of these, because we didn’t until we had to.

  1. Shelter. Obviously if you stay in your home it will be your shelter, but it can become very dangerous. You need to be prepared in case you end up with broken windows or a hole in your roof from a tree. Plywood is very expensive right now, but if you can purchase some and store it in case you need it, it would be a good idea. Plastic garbage bags secured with tape can be a temporary fix for a broken window. Shutters over windows are a great option if you have them, or can afford to have them installed. A large tarp, we just bought one last year, can cover a hole in a roof until it can be repaired. We also purchased a large tent at a yard sale. We were sure to put it together to be sure all the parts were there. When we evacuated we took it with us. With 3 dogs we were not sure if we would be able to find a motel that would take three dogs, so it was a safety net for us.
  2. Money. If you stay behind and weather the storm, you will need cold hard cash because the chances of the power being out is almost 100% if the storm goes over you. The ATM will not work, and businesses may not have generators. You will need cash. If you evacuate you may want to have a little cash on hand, and a debit or credit card. When we came back the power outages were extensive and we had to use cash up to 2 hours from our home for things like gas.
  3. Pets. Plan for your pets. What will you do with them if you have to evacuate, or stay? There are shelters and places they can be boarded. This can be very expensive and you may not get a spot. When we evacuated we called ahead to where we were going and we were assured they took pets. When we arrived at the destination and they saw we had a big dog, albeit a friendly dog, they said they did not take pets. This put us in quite a pickle, and I was unsure what to do as all the other motels were full. We actually ended up staying a night in a not so nice motel, but they let us have all three dogs and did not charge us extra for them. I was very grateful indeed. Make sure you always have at least 3 days of food, water, and medication for your pets. Please, don’t leave your pets behind to fend for themselves, or tie them to a tree. They may drown because they can’t get away. Domesticated animals have no idea how to survive once humans started doing everything for them. This is cruel and inhumane. I would have slept in my car with my kids, and dogs, rather than abandon them. If we are sheltering in place for a storm all leashes, harnesses, and muzzles if necessary are all kept in one spot for easy access. Also, when traveling with pets consider that others may not be as prepared, or responsible as you. We actually had a dog jump out of the back of a pickup because it was unsecured, and charged my son and dog. Thank goodness no one got injured. Practice with your pets getting into a vehicle quickly, and riding manners.
  4. Too much water. Rain and flooding are huge concerns with tropical systems. You can get feet of water. We have had water come right up to the top of the porch. We are now zoned for a flood zone which is why we had to evacuate in 2017. Our home has never flooded. thank goodness. One thing we have not yet purchased, but sits in the back of my mind, is some kind of small boat, or other floating device. Children, elderly and pets can all become quickly fatigued if you have to leave your home due to too much water. Walking in fast moving water is tiring, and dangerous. I would like a small boat to keep in storage if we ever need it. So far we have not found one to fit our budget. Like snow, in the north, heavy rains can weigh down tree branches causing them to hang very low, or even break. Keep the trees over your home, buildings, and power lines trimmed so they can not cause damage. Learn how to trim trees properly so they are not lopsided causing them to be off balance. Standing water will bring mold, pests, and bacteria. Remove it as quickly as possible.
  5. Have a plan. Make sure everyone in your house knows the plan. If you evacuate you can follow the evacuation routes, but I found those to be flooded with slow moving traffic. We used our GPS and went around all that nonsense. Move away from the storm, and watch to be sure the track does not change. Do not settle in until you are sure of the path. Make sure you have gas before you leave. Trust me when I say gas will run out and you can become stranded.
  6. Heat and humidity. Often when the storm is coming it is somewhat cooler. However, once the storm has gone over the heat and humidity is unbearable. You will need a way to keep cool, especially without power. Yes, Walmart and McDonalds had generators but you can only hang out there just so long before they ask you to leave. We had no power for a full 7 days the year we evacuated. It was brutal mostly at night when you want to sleep. We do have a pool and have for most of the years we have been in Florida. The pool is invaluable, and I recommend everyone have one even if it is small. The investment is priceless. Something else we have, that I didn’t realize for years until we had a huge water leak and had to turn off our water for a few days, is that the outside hose actually has it’s own water source not the same as the indoor water supply. This means I can wash dishes, have clean drinking water, wash clothes, flush toilets, and yes cool off. If you can do this at your house, do it. Whoever owned the house before us had insight enough to do this. If you have a local spring, river, or other swimming area it will probably be your new home for a few days.
  7. Documents. You need to be sure and take photos of all of your valuables in and around your home. If you need to file a claim trust me you need them. Store them on a flash drive, and take it with you. We carry important documents in a fire and water proof safe, however, taking photos and putting them on a flash drive is much easier to transport. Because most organizations will need a hard copy, or original of most documents, you still need to keep them secure and safe. Have important numbers easy to access.
  8. Humans. People do weird things when they are scared, or panicked. They are also quite dirty, and gross. They will be in such a rush that they will leave garbage, and other gross things in bathrooms. I could not believe how disgusting the bathrooms were when we evacuated from people in such a hurry. People also will hoard, or panic buy everything in site even when they do not need the amount they buy. You have to be prepared for human reactions. Buy in small increments in the planning stage, but don’t overbuy. Take notice of human behaviors and how people act when they are scared, or in a rush. Don’t forget about PPE. There is still a pandemic after all.
  9. Misc. Basic first aid supplies, basic tools like a hand saw, hammer, rope, nails, etc. Garbage bags for collecting rain water, or to wear as a rain coat. Walmart bags make great shoe inserts or covers, or a rain hat. Bins, or other large containers to collect rain water. Bug spray, anti itch spray, solar lights from the Dollar Tree charged and ready to be brought indoors in place of burning candles. Matches, chargers, ziploc bags to put electronic devices in to keep safe from water. A way to get weather and news updates. Keep in touch with neighbors, the elderly, and family.

Be sure and check out days 1 and 2 in the archives.

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