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2024 Preparedness - Week 6: Calendar Week 5

February 5th week Five

Make it Monday: 

Make a Paint Can Heater/Stove Paint can heaters are valuable when power fails in winter, and you need to keep a room warm. They also work well in a lean-to or tent if stranded or camping in winter or when nights are cold. Used as a paint can stove it can help heat water or cook with very little fuel if stranded or during a power outage. You will need: a new quart-size paint can with a lid, 1 roll of inexpensive toilet paper, a quart bottle of rubbing alcohol

Remove the cardboard roll from the center of your TP. Squash the toilet paper and force it into the paint can. Pour an entire bottle of alcohol over the paper. Cover with lid and seal tightly. That’s it. You are ready to go. When you need heat simply light the alcohol. The alcohol will burn, but the toilet paper will not. When the alcohol is gone simply cover with the lid, wait for the heater to cool down, and add a new bottle of alcohol. It is now ready to go again. If you should need to put out the fire before it burns itself out place a lid securely on top of the stove. When you are ready to use the stove again add a small amount of alcohol to the TP to relight it. You will not need to add an entire bottle of alcohol unless you have not securely closed the stove and the alcohol has all evaporated. Try a small amount first before using an entire bottle. A bottle of alcohol will burn for about eight hours. To use as a stove you will need a grate or even a cake cooling rack to place on top of the can. Place a pot on the rack and you are ready to go. This fire will be very hot so all foods will need to be closely watched. Cast iron cookware works the best. Do not use cans without a tight-fitting lid as the alcohol will evaporate. While I would never use one of these inside a car they are a great addition to a car kit. They are easy to light in an emergency and the flame can be used to start a larger fire for warmth and cooking. They would also be appropriate to use in a shelter as long as you are awake. NEVER leave anything burning while you sleep. Have oven mitts available to use when cooking or heating. The heater will be very hot so never allow children to put it out or move it.


Time to “replace” the dishwasher when the power is out. Be sure you have liquid detergent as powders will not dissolve in water that is not very, very hot. Determine how many paper plates, cups, bowls, and plastic utensils you will need for a month. On average you will need: 3 plates/day, 2 bowls/day, 2 cups/day, 2 forks/day, 2 spoons/day, 1 knife/day. Multiply by the number of people in your family.


Purchase the items needed to replace your dishwasher. Add any items you could not afford to purchase to your wish list.


Self-Assessment time.

1.      Do you have a first aid kit?

2.      Do you have a first aid manual?

3.      Have you practiced basic first aid skills?

4.      Do you know how to splint a finger, arm, leg?

5.      Does a family member have CPR training?

6.      Does a family member know Heimlich?


Go through your medications. Make a list of items you need to replace.

Medications in pill or tablet form are good for two-five years after the expiration date. They may lose some of their potency so you may need to take more for the same results, but they will not be dangerous to consume.

Liquid medications which are more than a year past their expiration date should be discarded.


Purchase a few quarts of rubbing alcohol, a hot water bottle, and a manual can opener.

Sunday: Rest up

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