Please understand I am talking about when you get hit by the Flu or some other, at-home treatable malaise. If you need to see a doctor... Do It! It helps no one to put it off. Going to the doctor when you are truly sick is not a sign of weakness. Not going when you need to Is a sign of foolishness.
Okay so what should you have on hand.
A few bottles of water or a refillable water bottle. This is the handiest way to keep water nearby and hydrated when you are sick.
Something for nausea. Pepto for example. Ginger tablets are good too (they also do double duty to ward off car sickness for road trips and are safe for children).
Relief for various stomach issues - Pepto, Exlax and the like. While I find I rarely need these types of items, and often they are thrown out because they expire before being used up, I'd rather have them on hand than need to go out for myself when I wake up sick. Add in the thought of bringing along children while you accomplish this... no thank you.
A box of soft tissue. If your family is always running out, keep one hidden away for a sick day.
A basic cover everything cold medicine. I don't care what they say about only buying the medications for the present symptoms. It's a great idea in theory and probably much healthier (and I do it for my children) but when it comes down to me being sick (and how rarely it happens), it's just better to have it on hand.
An empty clean pail for bedside need with the flu.
Chicken noodle soup is actually good for you in more than the traditional sense (although there is nothing wrong with comfort foods). Soup (steam) of any kind help to open the bronchial tubes. Chicken also has different nutritious parts that help to fight colds, reduce mucus production and more that are released when cooking. Other herbs that you will use in the soup, like garlic and pepper, were once used much like we use cough medicines now. By having some on hand, you only need take it out to thaw and warm in the slow cooker. Not only do you have comfort food but an easy, nutritious way to feed your family while you are down.
Secret entertainment, sick day bag. This contains items that (mostly) are actually for your children. A couple of new books, a coloring book, a little dollar store doll with clothes, a few toy cars, a couple of children's movies or tv show series DVD, treats like mini bags of cookies, crackers and chips, and so on. These are items that will help to keep your children entertained while Mommy rests. Sure it's buying them off and a lazy way to parent but when you are sick, you're entitled! You could also keep the emergency box of tissue and a couple bottles of water in this bag as well.
You know yourself best and what types of sickness you are most likely to get. Think about it and what would make life a whole lot easier when it happens. If you really like one certain type of cough candy or peppermint when you are sick, include a pack in the sick day bag.
Of course the best plan is to stay healthy. Get rest, eat good foods, be active, everything in moderation.