There is a whole movement out there to decrease dependency on the grocery store. I wholeheartedly support the movement but there are just somethings I can’t or won’t give up. Toilet paper being the biggest one. Reading about alternatives to toilet paper just gives me the heebie jeebies. However, I realize that there may come a time when I will appreciate knowing how. I may even find that I die appreciating I know how but never had to.
I do want to put up a bit of a warning, we are taking toilet paper here so this conversation may dip into the TMI. I’ll try not to go too far.
I’m going to glaze over the botanicals. There are a number of leaves and things you can use as an alternative to toilet paper that sort of resembles toilet paper. Several times rocks came up on the lists. I don’t get that one nor can I see myself using a corncob or pinecone, even in the direst of situations. I’m also thinking that using my hand is not going to happen either.
I feel like Douglas Adams had it right when he said that one should never leave home without a towel. Our emergency packs are stuffed with towels because I just don’t think you can have enough.
So that brings me to the most popular choice and one that I just have mixed feelings for – the family cloth. I don’t know why they call it that, especially when it gives you the impression that everyone shares one.
The family cloth is a nice way of saying “we use a washcloth to wipe our butts”. Some prefer dry, while others use wet. There’s bucket systems where clean ones are in one bucket and dirty are in another. Some use sponges in the same manner.
In all the research, this is what I have decided to do for our emergency kit (we are not going to be giving up toilet paper as long as we have access to it) – I’m going to keep my eyes out for used flannel. Flannel squares are supposed to be the best choice for replacement toilet paper. Flannel doesn’t fray, which will be an added bonus, and it’s soft.
Then we are going to invest in something to use as a perineal wash bottle. There was a time when I had a mustard bottle from a picnic set as one. Not sure why I stopped but I’m thinking it might be nice to go back to one. I’ll be keeping an eye out for something similar. I’m hoping the dollar store sells the ketchup/mustard sets this summer so we can have them for the various kits (at 50 cents a bottle).
To be honest, this is one of those things I want to stock and forget about because it’s an awkward situation. I think having lots of cloths and making sure we stock some borax for cleaning the clothes will just have to do.