Did you know that September is National Preparedness Month? Emergency Preparedness is frequently on my mind and this list of 42 Refrigerator Essentials in the 9th in my ongoing series of lists for household inventory purposes.
If you’ve missed previous lists, here are links:
- 42 Kitchen Basics for Your New Home
- 42 Grilling Accessories and Supplies for Outdoor Cooking
- 42 Cooking Essentials for a Well-stocked Kitchen
- 42 Must Have Kitchen Utensils
- 42 Baking Essentials
- 42 Nice-to-Have Kitchen Supplies and Equipment
- 42 Spices to Have on Hand
- 42 Pantry Essentials
You may be wondering why I’ve taken on this task – this task of providing unending lists for household inventory purposes! Well, we lost our home in the 2007 San Diego Wildfire known as the Witch Fire. We were not prepared. At all. And, it took me 9 months of working nights and weekends to get our list of personal property done to submit to our insurance company.
Even though I’m probably more prepared than most, I still don’t feel prepared. Last year about this time, I put together our stash of emergency supplies and wrote a post about it called Emergency Planning Checklist. That post includes a FREE 12-page printable to help you with your emergency planning. If you tackle one project a month, you will have completed everything on that checklist in a year’s time! A great goal to start this month, National Preparedness Month.
Six years later, I don’t have a list of our stuff (even though we lost our home in a fire and you’d think I’d learned!), so I’ve decided to take on this never-ending project and since I’m doing it for me, I’ve decided to give readers copies of my lists in the hope that it will encourage others to be better prepared OR give readers a starting point if they are starting over after a major loss!
One other thing – notice that the above lists of 42 are all kitchen stuff? Bet you didn’t realize how much stuff you have in your kitchen alone! Imagine trying to do a household inventory to submit to an insurance company? Whew! Our insurance company adjustor put it like this:
“Carole, do you know how to use Excel?”
“Yes,” I replied.
“Well, I need you to make me a list of your inventory. You need to have a column to describe the item, a column for the year you purchased the item and a column to list the replacement cost of that item.”
“How detailed does this list have to be?” I asked.
“Let me put it to you this way: if it’s not on the list, you don’t get paid for it. Down to the last toothpick.”
And, yes, toothpicks are on one of these lists of 42!
We had no pictures, nothing to use to jog our memories. So, I was worried that I would not remember some of our stuff (and I’m sure I didn’t remember everything!). But, the adjuster gave me good advice. When we had this conversation, we were on our property standing in front of the burned out shell of our house. He asked me “where was your front door?”
I pointed to the area. “Come with me,” he said.
As we stood where our front door used to be, he said “close your eyes. Now visualize you are opening your front door and step inside. Now look around the room before you go further. What’s to your left? Is it a cabinet or a closet? If so, open the drawers of the cabinet. What’s inside? Describe the contents of each drawer before moving to the next drawer. If it’s a closet, what’s inside? Are there shelves? Describe what’s on those shelves. Now look to the right and repeat the process. Then move into the room and repeat the process. Go room by room until you’re done.”
Nine months people. It took me nine months. I can’t even imagine what we would have done without the internet to look things up! My old Excel spreadsheet of the contents of our old house is 165 legal-sized pages long!
And why lists of 42 and not 50 or 100? Well, it’s my feeble attempt to “brand” the 4 and two in our name! Anyway, there is a FREE printable available at the end of each of these lists of 42 household items, so you can print them and add them to your household inventory binders! Be sure to print the Emergency Planning Checklist, too, and just by doing that much, you are probably more prepared than most!
Oh, and one last thing before I give you the list – with this list of 42 Refrigerator Essentials on hand (in your refrigerator), you’ll be better prepared to whip up dinner (or breakfast or lunch) in a hurry!
Anyway, here’s the list of 42 Refrigerator Essentials (yes, you need to remember to include your food if you have a loss; food is personal property, too!):
Milk: whole, 2%, 1%, non-fat, soy
Greek yogurt, regular yogurt
Cottage cheese, ricotta
Whipping cream, half & half
Cheese: cheddar, Parmesan, mozzarella, Feta, string, American, etc.
Cream cheese, mascarpone
Mustard: yellow, Dijon, ground
Major Grey’s Mango Chutney
Hot sauce (tabasco)
Salsa: mild, medium, hot
Jams and jellies: strawberry, orange, hot pepper, boysenberry
Lemon juice, lime juice
White wine, (opened) red wine
Pickles: sweet relish, dill
Pickled pepperoncini, jalapenos
Green and black olives
Flour and corn tortillas
Active dry yeast
Juice: apple, orange, cranberry, tomato
- Deli meats
- Fresh vegetables
- Fresh fruit
- Sun-dried tomatoes
- Seafood sauce: cocktail, tartar
- Bottled marinades
- Pet food (opened)
- Barbeque sauce
- Steak sauce
- Soft drinks, bottled water, other drinks
- Bottled salad dressings
- A box of baking soda (to keep your frig fresh!)
Who knew we had so much stuff in our refrigerator? A small fortune lives in there!
Here’s your FREE printable of the above list: TS4T Checklist – 42 Refrigerator Essentials
Stay tuned for more lists!
(other posts about the fire and emergency planning)
- Any Way the Wind Blows (the prologue to the 20-part series)
- Emergency Planning Checklist
- Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door
- The Backup Plan
- The Fire Drill
- What’s in Your First Aid Kit?