December 7: Being prepared Advent with SusieJ

Being prepared

I wear a sturdy, waterproof backpack large enough to hold an umbrella and spare novel. For years, Mom would occasionally ask if I didn't really want to carry a purse instead. Where would the umbrella go? The fact is, I'll never remember the umbrella only on days I need it; that would require remembering to check the weather to see if I need it, far easier to keep it in the bag.

It's very comforting to know that should I need it, the umbrella is there, along with painkillers and decongestants, a hairbrush and clip, a pack of tissues, and an ear warmer in winter. In school, I was the "unprepared" kid turning in homework late and with at least one overdue library book. The oh-nuts-that's-due-NOW? feeling comes back to me as clear as day. There's no need to remember anything in the moment, because I remembered it months ago.

For the same reason, my pantry is what's called well-stocked. I can bake almost anything without needing to run to the store. Fresh things like cream cheese won't last long enough to keep on hand, but butter freezes and milk comes in boxes now.


These rich, German sugar cookies use only basic baking ingredients, and can be decorated or not, glazed or not.

A freezer shelf with about ten pounds of butter on it.

The state of the freezer before Christmas or a wedding.