My Cold and Flu Survival Kit (12 Things Every Gal Should Keep Around This Season)

https://ec.yimg.com/ec?url=http%3a%2f%2fimgslide.health.com%2fimages%2fslides%2f11755%2ffull%2fchicken-soup-400.jpg&t=1397796646&sig=hjI.0rUGICjCVihOGjoCZw--~BHi, my dears! It's funny, when the flu hit, I was so not prepared for it. We were out of Tylenol for crying out loud! So, thinking of you, and the cold and flu season ahead, I've put together a little health kit--filled with things that every gal might considering keeping on hand in the event that a virus knocks you off your feet. Here are 12 things that got me through it ...

Find out how Sarah survived H1N1.

So, what does a gal need to keep on hand for a speedy (and comforting) recovery from the flu?

1. Bath salts. This may sound weird, but where some people rub "vapor rub" type products on their chests, I like to let a little aromatherapy from a good jar of bath salts do the job. It's also really relaxing and healing.

2. Extra blankets. This may sound nuts, but when my fever spiked to 102 degrees, we didn't have any extra blankets around. (I'd boxed them up and took them to storage in the summer to save space in our linen closet--um, stupid move!) So, as I was freezing under my thick down comforter, my husband was layering me with little baby blankets and towels. (Hey, we had to find something to keep me warm!) Lesson learned: Always have an ample supply of blankets.

3. Chicken soup. It's easy on the throat and good for the body--even researchers have backed it up. Keep a few cans in your pantry or, if you're an overachiever, make a big batch of homemade soup (with lots of garlic) and freeze.

4. Elderberry extract. Research may be preliminary, but some experts believe that elderberry may be as effective as some prescription medications at zapping viruses. I took a few teaspoons a day of this stuff during the thick of the flu, and if it didn't help, it sure tasted good!

5. Electrolyte beverages. Dehydration is a big concern for flu sufferers--especially if you're the lucky kind who vomits whenever you get sick. Keep some Gatorade around, or choose my favorite kind, Recharge by R.W. Knudson. They don't add any sugar or artificial colors or flavors.

6. Honey. Some health experts say honey can soothe a sore throat, and I agree--it soothed mine.

Related: 5 Reasons Why It's a Good Idea to Call in Sick

7. A kind-hearted person to help you with kids/life/errands. I'm so glad my husband could take some time off work to help me with the kids (who were also sick). Don't have a guy in your life? Find a pal who will be willing to check in on you and bring you dinner when you're sick in bed.

8. Tissue. You will go through so many boxes. Keep some extra on hand for when the sniffles strike. Let's face it, nobody wants to blow their nose with toilet paper.

9. Warm socks. I hate cold feet. A comfy pair of warm socks make me feel that much more comforted and on the road to wellness.

10. Hot herbal tea. It has a healing sense about it. I don't even care for honey in it sometimes--just plain.

11. A working thermometer.
Do you have a thermometer? Do you know where it is right now? I ask this because I constantly lose mine, and when I find it, it's always out of batteries. Check to make sure yours is in working order before you get sick!

12. A good pain reliever. I mentioned above that we were out of Tylenol when I needed it most. Let that be a lesson to you! Stock up!

Big hug! Stay well.

P.S. Of course, vitamin C is a must too! But, you already had that one on your list, right?

Can you even imagine?