Pandemic preparedness: a shopper’s guide

Photo credit: Latente from Flickr

Photo credit: Latente from Flickr

So, I’ve been piled under blankets and drinking plenty of fluids for days now. In the midst of the H1N1 scare season, formerly known as the flu season, I have to admit to wondering about if/when I should go see a doctor. The NS government has an Influenza Decision Chart that I found actually pretty helpful/comforting. And then there’s this H1N1 Home Management sheet to help you help a loved one. Or, if you’re a woman, help yourself because let’s face it: there’s a low percentage of male nurses out there for a reason.

Being sick and not being able to do much of anything, I’ve had a lot of time to think. With what’s supposed to be a pandemic AND the holiday season upon us, here’s a shopper’s guide for getting through your illness with comfort:

1. (a) A good blanket. When I Googled “warmest blanket in the world” I came up with slanket. I have no idea what the difference between that and a snuggie is but apparently the slanket is the “original blanket with sleeves.” Yeah, it’s kind of ugly and ridiculous. But, really, you’re not exactly looking your prime when you’re nose is a faucet of snot. Plus, when you’re done with it the brown one could possibly double as a Halloween costume. Either Jedi master or Friar Tuck.

1. (b) If you’ve got a standard blanket, the next best thing to a slanket is a warm sweater. Personally, I’ve been wearing a waterfall cardigan that I brought back from the summer trip to Ireland. It’s a wool sweater made by Ireland’s Eye called a tassle wrap but very much in the style of the waterfall cardigans that are en vogue this season. Easy to throw on and off between bouts of fevers and chills.

2. A big mug. Pre-made or go the extra mile and create one from Claytime Pottery Painting.

3. Warm beverages. Put together a basket from a local shop like The Tea Brewery. Or get together all the ingredients for a hot toddy.

4. IOUs. Maybe these seem lame to the giver of this gift, but not so to the sick person piled beneath blankets desperate for a cup of tea but not willing to leave the warmth. (Hmm…the portability of slankets seems more and more appealing.) Being able to redeem an IOU for a cup of tea, meal, hug, massage, etc. is a great gift for the sick loved one in your life. The catch is, these have to be redeemed without attitude.

So, there you have it. A few ideas for the holidays while thinking of the welfare of your loved ones during this germ-y time of year.


Staff Picks – Short Stories in Coming Attractions 08

David Suzuki’s Commercial and Sustainable Living… you know where this is going..