Emergency Preparedness – Week 4 “Emergency Binder & Cash Stash”

January 5, 2013

Welcome to week 4 of Emergency Preparedness. The forth step to creating an emergency survival station for your home is putting together an important documents folder for each backpack, one emergency binder (for important personal information) to go in an adult backpack & start a (small bill) cash reserve. If for some reason your family gets separated, all family members have cash & emergency information. If the power goes out you will not be able to use your credit card. Cash may be the only option. Once you collect your important documents & photocopy them, create your emergency binder & stash some cash, you are ready to move on to week 5.






1. Obtain folders (one for each backpack).  You will place copies of medical & family information in them.

2. Photocopy “Important Documents” (below)  from your personal files.

3. Print & fill out printables (if you have the E-Book) & add personal information as directed. If you do not have the e-book, see below (Important information to have).

4. Add 2 ($1) bills to each backpack every pay (at least $100/per person goal). You can keep the cash in another location where it’s easy to access.

5. Print out a recent individual & family picture and place in each folder.

6. Designate an “Emergency Binder” to keep important family documents (including marriage license, birth certificates, SS cards, etc). You only need 1 binder for these documents.



Birth Certificate

Marriage Certificate

Drivers License

Social Security Card

DD 214 (Military Record)

Advanced Medical Directive

Power of Attorney

Baptism Records

Life Insurance Policy

Home Insurance Policy

Insurance Cards


Deeds & Titles

*Add additional important papers as needed. Place these papers in the emergency “binder”.


(Printables are included in E-Book)

1.  Family Health Information – Medical history, medications, blood type, allergies

2.  Family Emergency Plan – Where will everyone meet if there is an emergency? Have a plan and place it in each backpack.

3. Insurance Policies & Phone Numbers – Medical, Home, Dental, Life  *Only needed in 1 backpack.

4. Important Emergency Numbers – Fire, Gas, Electric Co,  Police, Poison Control, etc.

5. Family Numbers – Closest relatives, neighbors, baby sitters.

Once you have printed, copied, and/or filled out your important documents, as well as put away $2 for each family member, you are ready to move on to week #5. 



 If you already have a binder at home, re-use it.  Also, you can purchase inexpensive folders at Walmart for about 20 cents each.  If you cannot afford to stash $2/week, stash what your budget allows.  A little $ collected over time adds up to a lot!




If you would to print out a paper copy of the 8 week series, you can purchase my “Emergency Preparedness” E-Book below.  It includes the entire  8 week series, along with several Emergency Binder Printables.  The E-Book is a great tool to refer to while setting up your station.   (Here) are the details of the E-Book.  Purchase your copy for only $10.


Below are the printables included in the E-Book.  Just purchase, print and fill them out!



Buy Now!

21 comments on “Emergency Preparedness – Week 4 “Emergency Binder & Cash Stash”

  1. Kathy says:

    Please keep your binder(s) in a secure location. If they are stolen, your identity could also be stolen.

    • Katie C. says:

      I agree with Kathy! I strongly recommend having a firesafe that is bolted down to the floor ($180) to secure any important & sensitive documents. At this time I don’t have one, but saw them at Staples yesterday for about $180. Make sure the box states or pictures the bolt-down ability. Sentry Safe is the more common brand found in most stores. I feel so strongly about emergency preparedness. If nothing else, please hop on board with A Bowl Full of Lemons’ Emergency preparedness kits. Life can change in an instant, so why not be ready just in case?!!

  2. Damian says:

    This is likely one of the most important preps you can do. Documentation and cash are vital to any good emergency preparedness strategy. Thanks!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Copy all of your important papers onto a flash drive, and keep it on your person. This way in the event of fire or water damage the flash drive is less likely to get destroyed.

  4. Tyson says:

    Hi! This is my first comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you I genuinely enjoy reading through your articles.
    Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that cover
    the same topics? Thanks a lot!

  5. Shannon says:

    Consider making some of your emergency cash stash in coins. Pre-1965 silver coins have a higher silver content and more value. With inflation paper money may become useless.

  6. Josey says:

    I would like to know, how can I get all 8 weeks of this Emergency Binder? Thanks in advance

  7. Geraldine says:

    It’s very simple to find out any matter on web as compared to textbooks, as I found this article at this web site.

  8. anita chicquita says:

    As someone who made it through Katrina evacuation (then Rita evacuation), relocation and loss of home with relatively trouble compared to most people we encountered, I absolutely encourage you to have the ORIGINALS of the main documents in the folder, do not put originals in safety deposit boxes. Although everyone helped us during the big event and people were able to get by with copies, the boom got lowered afterwards and it was very diffuclt for families who couldn’t go home but didn’t have their original mortgages, insurance papers, birth certificates, and marriage licenses at a minimum. Keep copies on the cloud along with notes over where the orinigals came from (courthouse in Alleghany County MD, hospital in Santa Fe, etc.). Also, if you have a special needs family member, include a copy of their medical record on the cloud and in every folder. Because we had these things we were able to get immediate help for my daughter with autism while others struggled. I love your website, it is a mission!

  9. Tracey says:

    Hi love your blog, currently trying to organise (I’m British) my study but spending too much time reading your tips and not enough doing….
    Being from the UK I (and I would think most of our country) do find your need to be soooo prepared rather strange. Do you live in an area prone to natural disasters? Most people over here would think being prepared was having a full pack of paracetamol and a couple of plasters at home!!! Though I have a few more first aid things than that.

    • rachel says:

      Tracey, Toni lives in a hurricane prone area and if my memory serves me, a previous home suffered a lot of damage. I personally lived in an area prone to tornadoes AND earthquakes and now live in an area that can also feel the effects of hurricanes as well as severe thunderstorms. No matter what the case being prepared is always a good idea. You never know when an emergency will strike!

      • Elizabeth says:

        Rachel and Tracey,
        June 2011, the upstairs condo’s chimney was hit by lightning causing fire, smoke and severe water damage in my 1st floor condo. Hopefully lightning won’t hit twice. I was lucky that my valuable documents weren’t affected but it was a wake up call. That night working until 1am I found my documents and valuables as the association sent in workers to begin clean up (not under my supervision). I couldn’t get ahold of my insurance agent about what to do other than do whatever I could to lessen the potential for further damage of my personal property. I was 4 months living out of suitcase. It was the wake up call I needed to secure important documents, back up copies and share what I learned with my family and friends. Know what your insurance covers and be prepared!

        • rachel says:

          Elizabeth, I’m so glad you and yours were all safe! Definitely a wake up call, if ever I heard of one. Thank you for sharing.

    • Brittany says:

      Most of the United States have some sort of natural disaster to deal with. On the coats and in the south, hurricanes and earthquakes and wildfires are a serious problem. In the midwest, we have tornadoes very frequently and have also had some of the worst earthquakes in history. Up north, winters can be very dangerous if you’re not prepared. It seems like some sort of natural disaster happens at least once a year. You just never know. It’s always better to be prepared for the worst

  10. excellent points altogether, you just gained a brand new reader.
    What might you suggest in regards to your submit that you just made a few days in the past?
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  11. I absolutely love your site.. Very nice colors & theme.
    Did you build this site yourself? Please reply back as I’m looking to create my own website and want to learn where you got this from or exactly what the theme is named. Thank you!

    • Toni says:

      Its a genesis theme called innovative. I designed it myself and had a developer put it all together. Thank you! 🙂

  12. Becky says:

    I was wondering where the dividers in your binder come from? Do they come with the ebook or did you purchase them from a retailer.


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