|AP Photo Hurricane Ian|
Like so many people, I have been praying for residents of the Western coast of Florida. I haven't heard the latest statistics since Thursday but just looking at early photos of the destruction, it looks as bad as Katrina where it made landfall.
The scenes the day before the hurricane was to hit reminded me again why we need to keep food and water in our homes prior to any emergency situation. Lines of people were waiting to get into the grocery stores and considering how low some stores already were on stock, bottled water was unavailable quite early.
If nothing else, having even a couple weeks worth of shelf stable food, medications, pet supplies, etc. put back can keep you from being a victim. Going through such a storm is bad enough. I can't imagine what it would be like after the storm when it may be impossible to leave your home for awhile safely.
This has been a busy week with a three-month doctor's checkup on Tuesday, our carpets in the living room and family room getting cleaned for the first time in three years on Wednesday, and our annual furnace checkup on Friday. Well, annual before COVID!
Our furnace and air conditioners are both quite old and we knew this might be the year they had to be replaced. Usually, they tell us they can last another year. This week, when asked about replacing them, we were told it would be a good idea to replace them now because due to new EPA standards, the cost of a new furnace will go up 25% on January 1st. Yikes!
Thankfully, we had been tucking away a "furnace and air conditioning" fund in our savings account and we only had to dip into it once. So, with a cash discount, we had just enough to pay for them. We are doing our best to stay out of debt, especially with interest rates climbing.
I can't tell you the feeling of relief it is to not worry about the furnace or air conditioner breaking down. It was a gift from God that both stayed running until we could save what we needed and just before the furnace price would go up substantially.
I admit, it was tempting to have money in savings when we really need a new sofa in the family room, not to mention rebuilding the deck. But the savings were there for our first priority... heat and air conditioning.
This whole furnace purchase thing has reminded me of the importance of praying about even what seems small in God's eyes. Actually, nothing having to do with His people is small to Him. I kept getting a nudge that we needed to have the furnace technician in before it became very cold.
I thought perhaps that nudge was for safety reasons but it ended up He was nudging us to be able to purchase a new furnace while it was in stock and before we had to switch to the super energy efficient and much more expensive furnace after the beginning of the new year. The furnace we did purchase is much more energy efficient already than the old one was.
I went to Meijer on Thursday for some groceries we needed before the weekend and my friends, I don't remember so many empty shelves since 2020. There are some shelves with no product on them but quite a few that had a limited amount of product available. Not to mention the very high prices.
You can really tell there is a problem with a lack of potatoes. Those small pouches of instant potatoes had gone up in price a lot this past six months or so and now that shelf was almost empty. The larger boxes of instant potatoes were very limited. I hope the shortages end with the new harvest.
I have to go to Aldi on Monday or Tuesday, it will be interesting to see what their stock looks like in the next few months since it is a German company. I know Aldi USA gets a lot of products from America but many of my favorites are either German or European.
We all need to be in prayer about what God would have us do to prepare should there be more shortages and higher inflation, both of which look like a real probability. Whether you decide now is the time to finally buy that needed new furnace or you decide to start putting back some beans and rice, the important thing always is to be obedient to God's calling.
Mentioned in this Blog Post
Well, I mentioned potatoes so I will tuck this in here. The instant potato flakes I like (and are supposed to store very well) can be found on Amazon... here. They have gone up in price since I purchased them, as have all potato products.
I like these because they are simple, just potatoes.
Disclaimer: Most links to Amazon.com are Associate links.
Image: AP Photo, Photographer Phelan Ebenhack