prepping

All posts tagged prepping

By Daisy Luther – The Organic Prepper

Out of all the years that I’ve been writing about prepping, this has been the year of the wake-up call. If one good thing has come from all the disasters, it’s the fact that many people have seen the light and learned a hard, firsthand lessons and want to start prepping.

  • Hurricane Harvey taught people that places which didn’t normally flood were still not exempt from Mother Nature and that the aftermath was rife with danger.
  • The wildfires in California taught people that they needed a rapid evacuation plan for themselves and their pets.
  • Hurricane Maria taught us that life could completely and utterly change for millions of people whose homes were destroyed and who may not have the grid back anytime in the near future.
  • Hurricane Irma was one of the strongest hurricanes to hit the state in many years. Millions of people were warned to evacuate. Residents faced destruction and lengthy interruptions in power and the availability of supplies.
  • Throughout all these disasters, we got confirmation that all hell DOES indeed break loose and that we won’t be able to rely on 911, no matter how stringently the “everything is okay” myth is reinforced by the media.

Now there’s an epic storm in the Northeastern US that was sudden and brutal. A friend called me yesterday and told me she and her family could be without power for more than a week. She wasn’t ready for it. “This really drove home what you do,” she said.

All of these horrible things have one silver lining…more people than ever realize that the government won’t be rushing to save them anytime soon and that they must be prepared to be completely on their own.

So if this is you, welcome to the prepped side. I have put together a little primer for you. It isn’t over the top. You don’t need a bunker and an AK47 for each family member. You just need food, water, shelter, and an evacuation plan. No tinfoil required.

There are links in each section where you can go to learn more about that topic. At the end is a resource list with some shortcuts and some useful books.  You don’t have to do every single thing RIGHT NOW.  This is just a preparedness overview and if you have recently been through an emergency, you will probably recognize what your priorities should be.

Water preparedness

If you never buy a single canned good or bag of pasta for long-term food storage, please store water. Every time there’s a pending emergency, the shelves at stores are completely cleared of water within a matter of hours (if not sooner.)

If you went out and bought it, a full month’s supply of drinking water for a family of 4 would cost approximately $150, depending on the prices in your area. I recommend the refillable 5-gallon water jugs for this. This is a small investment to make for your family’s security and well-being in the event of an emergency.

As well, fill empty containers with tap water. Every container that comes into your house can be used for these purposes. When you empty a jar or bottle, wash it, fill it up, and stash it somewhere. Even if these containers aren’t food safe, you can use them for flushing, cleaning, and hygiene.

Once you have water stored, consider adding filtration devices, secondary water sources, and water harvesting to your preparedness endeavors. You can learn more about water preparedness in my book on the topic, and  HEREHERE, and HERE.

Build a pantry

Lots of preppers like to keep a year’s supply of food on hand. If you’re just getting started out, that can bein incredibly overwhelming. Start out smaller than that – focus first on an extra two weeks, then on a month’s supply. You can always build from there.

Keep in mind when building your emergency food supply that you might not have electricity during some disasters. In that case, you’ll want to have food that doesn’t require lengthy (or any) cooking times. Look for just-add-water dehydrated foods, or better yet, foods that don’t need to be cooked at all. Search for an off-grid cooking method that will work for your home.

Do not make the mistake of loading your pantry with nutritionless processed foods. In a crisis event, you want your body to work optimally, and junk in means junk out. Focus on nutrient-dense foods for good health and energy no matter what’s going on in the world around you.

  • Learn how to build a pantry HERE.
  • Learn to build a food supply fast with emergency buckets HERE.
  • Find a list of foods that don’t require cooking HERE.
  • Shop for emergency food HERE.
  • Get an emergency stove that can be used indoors HERE.

Power outage survival

A great starting point for someone who is just getting started on a preparedness journey is prepping specifically for a two-week power outage.  If you can comfortably survive for two weeks without electricity, you will be in a far better position than most of the people in North America.

Lighting is absolutely vital, especially if there are children in the house.  Nothing is more frightening than being completely in the dark during a stressful situation. Fortunately, it’s one of the easiest things to plan for, as well as one of the least expensive.

Some lighting solutions are:

Learn about prepping for a two-week power outage in more detail HERE.

Have a plan for sanitation preparedness

A common cause of illness, and even death, during a down-grid situation is lack of sanitation.  We’ve discussed the importance of clean drinking water, but you won’t want to use your drinking water to keep things clean or to flush the toilet.

For cleaning, reduce your need to wash things.

  • Stock up on paper plates, paper towels, and disposable cups and flatware.
  • Keep some disinfecting cleaning wipes and sprays (I don’t recommend using antibacterial products on a regular basis, however, in the event of an emergency they can help to keep you healthy.)
  • Use hand sanitizer after using the bathroom and before handling food or beverages – there may be a lot more germs afoot in a disaster.

Look at your options for sanitation.  Does your toilet still flush when the electricity is out?  Many people discovered the hard way that the toilets didn’t work when the sewage backed up in the highrises in New York City in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.  At our cabin, the toilet won’t flush without power because the pump is electric.

If you are on a septic system, with no risk of the toilet backing up into the house, simply store some water for flushing in the bathroom.  (At the first sign of a storm, we always filled the bathtub for this purpose when we had a home on septic.)  Add the water to the tank so that you can flush.

If this is not an option, another solution is to stock up on extremely heavy duty garbage bags (like the kind that contractors use at construction sites) and kitty litter.  Place a bag either in your drained toilet or in a bucket.  Sprinkle some kitty litter in the bottom of the bag.  Each time someone uses the bathroom, add another handful of litter. Be very careful that the bag doesn’t get too heavy for you to handle it.  Tie it up very securely and store it outside until services are restored. Learn how to make a kitty litter toilet in more detail HERE.

Heat (depending on your climate)

If your power outage takes place in the winter and you live in a colder climate, heat is another necessity.  During the first 24 hours after a power outage, you can stay fairly warm if you block off one room of the house for everyone to group together in.  Keep the door closed and keep a towel or blanket folded along the bottom of the door to conserve warmth.  You can safely burn a couple of candles also, and in the enclosed space, your body heat will keep it relatively warm.  As well, dress in layers and keep everything covered – wear a hat, gloves (fingerless ones allow you to still function), and a scarf.

  • Click HERE to learn how to stay warm with less heat.
  • Click HERE for some cozy options to get your home ready for winter.

However, after about 48 hours, that’s not going to be enough in very cold weather. You will require backup heat at this point in certain climates.  If you are lucky enough to have a source of heat like a fireplace or woodstove, you’ll be just fine as long as you have a supply of wood.

Consider a portable propane heater (and propane) or an oil heater.  You have to be very careful what type of backup heat you plan on using, as many of them can cause carbon monoxide poisoning if used in a poorly ventilated area. Also, invest in a  Carbon Monoxide alarm that is not grid-dependent.

Learn more about off-grid heat options HERE.

First Aid kit

It’s important to have a basic first aid kit on hand at all times, but particularly in the event of an emergency.  Your kit should include basic wound care items like bandages, antibiotic ointments, and sprays.  As well, if you use them, keep on hand a supply of basic over-the-counter medications, like pain relief capsules, cold medicine, cough syrup, anti-nausea pills, and allergy medication.

If you want to put together a more advanced medical kit, you can find a list HERE.

Special needs

This is something that will be unique to every family. Consider the things that are needed on a daily basis in your household. It might be prescription medications, diapers, or special foods.  If you have pets, you’ll need supplies for them too.  The best way to figure out what you need is to jot things down as you use them over the course of a week or so.

Plan ahead for home defense

It’s an unfortunate fact that disaster situations bring out the worst in many people. Because of this, even if you stay safely at home, you could be called upon to defend your property or family.  Some people loot for the sheer “fun” of it, others consider chaos a free pass to commit crimes, and still others are frightened and desperate.  You can have a 10 year supply of food, water, and medicine, but if you can’t defend it, you don’t own it. The article The Anatomy of a Breakdown explains the predictable patterns of social unrest.

The best way to win a fight is to avoid getting into that fight in the first place. Secure your home and lay low, but be prepared if trouble comes to visit.

Here are some tips to make your home less of a target:

  • Keep all the doors and windows locked.  Secure sliding doors with a metal bar.  Consider installing decorative grid-work over a door with a large window so that it becomes difficult for someone to smash the glass and reach in to unlock the door.
  • Keep the curtains closed. There’s no need for people walking past to be able to see what you have or to do reconnaissance on how many people are present.
  • Don’t answer the door.  Many home invasions start with an innocent-seeming knock at the door to gain access to your house.
  • Keep pets indoors. Sometimes criminals use an animal in distress to get a homeowner to open the door for them. Sometimes people are just mean and hurt animals for “fun”.  Either way, it’s safer for your furry friends to be inside with you.

If, despite your best efforts, your property draws the attention of people with ill intent, you must be ready to defend your family and your home.  If the odds are against you, devise a way to get your family to safety.  Your property is not worth your life.

It’s very important to make a defense plan well before you need one.  This book can also help. You want to act, no react.

Have an evacuation plan

Not every emergency can be weathered at home. Sometimes there is no option but to evacuate. Some examples of this are the pending collapse of a dam, a volcano, a massive storm, flooding, wildfire, or a chemical spill. In some cases, you’ll have an hour or two to get ready before you have to leave. In other situations, there may barely be enough time to put on your shoes.

Have things set up ahead of time so your evacuation can be quick. Even if you have more time, getting on the road before everyone else gives you the advantage of being less likely to be stuck in a traffic jam while disaster bears down on you. Keep important documents in the cloud so you can access them if your home is destroyed.

Don’t wait for the evacuation order. When officials are trying to cover mismanagement or when an event occurs suddenly, you may not be warned in time.

Survival Supply Checklist

Here is a general list of supplies to have on hand. Remember that sometimes power supplies are lost during a variety of situations, so keep the potential for a down-grid situation in mind when preparing.  You don’t have to get everything all at once.  Just get started and build your supplies as you can. After a quick inventory and re-organization, you may be pleasantly surprised at how many supplies you actually have on hand.

  • Water: 1 gallon per person per day (We use 5-gallon jugs and a gravity water dispenser
  • Water filter (We have a Big Berkey)
  • Necessary prescription medications
  • well-stocked pantry – you need at least a one-month supply of food for the entire family, including pets
  • This is a one-month food supply for one person – it’s not the highest quality food in the world, but it is one way to jumpstart your food storage
  • An off-grid cooking method (We use this one for inside and this one for outside, plus our barbecue)
  • Or food that requires no cooking
  • First aid supplies: This one is good for basics and this one is good for traumatic injuries
  • Lighting in the event of a power outage
  • Sanitation supplies (in the event that the municipal water system is unusable, this would include cleaning supplies and toilet supplies)
  • A way to stay warm in harsh winter weather (This Little Buddy propane heater with a supply of propane is our choice)
  • Over-the-counter medications and/or herbal remedies to treat illnesses at home
  • A diverse survival guide and first aid manual (hard copies in case the internet and power grid are down)
  • Alternative communications devices (such as a hand crank radio) so that you can get updates about the outside world
  • Off-grid entertainment:  arts and craft supplies, puzzles, games, books, crossword or word search puzzles, needlework, journals (Find more ideas HERE and HERE)

Books to Help You on Your Journey

Welcome to the preparedness community!

I’m always so happy to welcome people who are new to preparedness.  Read books, go to websites, and join forums an Facebook groups. While there ARE some curmudgeonly folks out there, most are delighted to answer questions and help you on your way.

Please, don’t let the thought of all of the preps that you do not yet have bring you down.

It’s a process.  Once you know the possibilities, accept them, and begin to prepare, you are already far ahead of most of the neighborhood. Don’t be discouraged by how much you have left to do, instead, be encouraged by how far ahead you are compared to your former unawareness.   Just making the decision to get started is the biggest step towards preparedness you’ll ever take.

For those of you who have been doing this for a while, please welcome our new friends. And tell us in the comments, what is your best advice for getting started?

This article first appeared at The Organic Prepper: This Is Your Wake-Up Call: How to Start Prepping

About the author:

Daisy is a coffee-swigging, gun-toting, homeschooling blogger who writes about current events, preparedness, frugality, and the pursuit of liberty on her website, The Organic Prepper. She curates all the most important news links on her aggregate site, PreppersDailyNews.com She is the best-selling author of 4 books and lives in the mountains of Virginia with her two daughters and an ever-growing menarie. You can find Daisy on FacebookPinterest, and Twitter.

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Image Source: Pixabay.com

By Rachel Stinson – Guest Writer

For many people, the word “Prepper” brings a vision of camouflage, a scary and frightening survivalist who is waiting for the end of the world. However, most Preppers are very ordinary people who do not stand out in a crowd. They are doctors and plumber, attorneys, carpenters, and teachers with a Wi-Fi hidden camera. Most of them have no camouflage!

So who is a “Prepper”?

Although there may be as many definitions as there are people involved in each movement, the basic definition is that a Prepper is the one that stores the equipment, supplies, and food in case of an emergency. That emergency could be a massive natural disaster such as hurricane or tornado, forest fires, or gas leaks that require evacuation of the neighborhood or anything up to a major collapse of the country’s power grid. Preppers also take seriously the threat of knowing how a terrorist can affect the power grid or nationwide supply network that keeps our grocery store’s shelves stocked.

Preppers will usually have several weeks to a year’s supply of food provided, as well with flashlights, blankets, Wi-Fi nanny cams, water filtering systems, and a portable backup generator. These are people who are not profoundly affected by a multi-day power outage or a large source of broken water that causes a run on bottled water at the grocery store.

Who is a ‘’survivalist’’?

Usually, a survivalist is a hard core Prepper who, in addition to being prepared for a natural disaster, is very concerned about a breakdown in law and order. In addition to Prepper’s concern about ‘’SHTF’’ (Shit Hits the Fan) scenes, Survivalists are interested in “TEOTWAWKI” (the end of the world as we know it) and “WROL” (without the rule of law) situations. Survivalist considers the social order as being very fragile: it depends on an increasingly efficient state welfare system, which has to accommodate more than 44 million Americans on food stamps. They understand that if America’s extraordinary debt is not continually recycled by foreign countries willing to purchase out T-bills and bonds, we could be hyper-inflated like Zimbabwe and Weimar Germany that could cause massive civil unrest. Dangerous times and great risks require precautions, and Survivalist considers their personal safety and that of their loved ones important. A Survivalist will have firearms and usually a concrete plan of “hunkering down” or “bugging out” if law and another breakdown.

What can we learn from Preppers and Survivalists?

It would be difficult to find a Survivalist who is not a Prepper, and likewise, most Preppers have thought about survivalist and protecting themselves. Everyone would greatly benefit from thinking about these two groups of people and what can be learned from them.

If there was a power outage for more than two or three days, what would you do? If the governments (city, state, and federal) could not care for the Hurricane Katrina victims, what does this tell you about being prepared? Did you think that if you don’t have a plan, a natural gas leakage, train derailment, power outage, or terrorist attack could turn your family into a refugee? You may be surprised at how little preparation it takes to give yourself lots of peace of mind as you are positioned to meet disaster head on.

 

This article published by The Survival Place BlogSURVIVALISTS VS PREPPERS: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

About the author:

Rachel Stinson has always had a knack for writing, food, fashion, and places. Blogging has combined all four for her with an added bonus of enthusiastic audiences. She expertly analyzes real estates, restaurants and electronics stores with respect to pricing and people involved and can express her opinions in an unhesitant, engaging manner for all matters.

Image: Why you can no longer put off prepping for hacks and takedowns of ALL U.S. infrastructure

By Natural News

(Natural News) Unbeknownst to most Americans, there is a conference that takes place in Las Vegas every single year that draws the most competent, capable hackers in the world. For four days they meet to discuss and demonstrate the latest techniques they’ve discovered (and likely used) to essentially disrupt as much of modern society as possible.

In the digital, wired, Internet-connected age, in a single room, at a single convention, lies the fate of modern societies everywhere.

The event is called “Black Hat,” and it just concluded last week. This year’s event drew about 16,000 hackers and information security experts from all over the world, as lawmakers, policymakers, defense experts, financial institutions, power companies and other infrastructure managers lie awake at night trying to figure out how to defend modern IT systems from these folks.

As noted by McClatchy Papers:

Hackers routinely come to the Black Hat convention to demonstrate how to break into electronic systems embedded in medical devices, ATMs, cars, routers and mobile phones. This year, at the 20th annual gathering, one security researcher walked attendees through a hack of a wind farm.

“Wind farm control networks are extremely susceptible to attack,” said the researcher, Jason Staggs, who works on behalf of the University of Tulsa.

He says hackers only need to find access to a single wind turbine in order to implant a virus or malware that would then spread throughout the wind farm. He said he’d been able to hack into multiple wind farms, after first obtaining permission from the operators.

“We can turn the turbine on or the turbine off or put it in an idle state,” he told the gathered attendees, as he then demonstrated his technique.

Continue reading at Natural News: Why You Can No Longer Put Off Prepping for Hacks and Takedowns of ALL U.S. Infrastructure

By Ken Jorgustin – Modern Survival Blog

Safety and Security may or may not become an issue for level-1 prepping & preparedness.

You might look at this topic from two different perspectives.

One is your general safety while going about your tasks and dealing with the issues at hand, and the other is your general personal security.

 

SAFETY

The best way to ensure your safety during any disruption is to keep a level head. Use common sense and don’t rush if you don’t have to.

Continue reading at Modern survival Blog: Safety & Security: Level 1 Prepping & Preparedness

By Kirk – The Prepper Journal

Now, I have been doing this for over ten years and have been actively involved in a small community of like-minded people for almost as much time – and I have seen plenty of folks come and go (especially since the rise of the show Doomsday Preppers). I – more so than a lot of people involved in this – have dealt with A LOT of other preppers face to face and I want to talk about the patterns that I have seen form over the years.

Before anything else I will quickly mention one thing that has been repeated a lot but is always worth mentioning – physical fitness! I have met people who hold the belief that it doesn’t matter if they cannot handle a flight of stairs as ‘the weight will come off when it needs too’ and ‘my body will adapt’. You can be the best prepared and equipped person on Earth but the harsh reality is that day zero will involve a lot of hard work, even if you intend to hunker down, you need to take into consideration preparing your AO and getting there. The reality is that no matter the event, prepping without the willingness to make some sacrifice to fitness is hoarding under a different name.

Now with that over with…

Skills – not stuff!

All too frequent is the mentality that having lots of “things” is going to make a SHTF scenario easier; while yes, there is a baseline amount of prepping supplies that will improve your chances and are basically necessities (A good knife, a map, a plan, and a gun depending on how you feel about the situation) that isn’t everything. What I am talking about is the huge tendency to believe that having an object is the same as being able to use said object proficiently.

Continue reading at The Prepper Journal: 4 Absolutely Necessary Things Every Prepper Must Realize

By Jeanie – Modern Survival Online

Each year, the manufacturers who listen to their customers learn a little more about how their products are being used and what can be done to improve them. Then technology keeps advancing so the quality of materials and the designs improve year on year.

From backpacks to sling bags, messenger, laptop bags, pocket organizers and even a designer bag there is something to suit everyone’s taste and pocket and most importantly a bag that will fit all the EDC items. We have rounded up a select few popular EDC bags you should consider.

rush 12 tactical backpack

1. Backpack: TACTICAL RUSH 12

The Rush 12 is incredibly popular. It comes in 4 colors to suit different tastes and uses – Black, Multicam Sandstone and Double Tap. The design of this bag is great for someone who has to carry a reasonable amount of gear and equipment on their daily commute. The main compartment is 18″ x 11″ x 6.5″ and it has a 21.2 liter capacity (1296 cubic inch)

For people who like to be organized instead of rummaging around in a pack that has only two or so compartment this bag has 16 compartments including a fleece-lined sunglasses pocket. Winner! Then the zipper pocket inside the outside storage area fits an iPad mini snugly – so no extra case needed for that or a tablet of similar size either. In the main compartment you can fit a laptop and accessories.

Continue reading at Modern Survival Online: The 10 Best EDC Bags for 2017

By Ken Jorgustin – Modern Survival Blog

Although it might be nice to pull your emergency kit behind you as pictured above pulling my cargo trailer, lets downsize it a bit to level-1…

Basic level-1 prepping and preparedness includes the following topics, of which today’s topic will cover the 72-hour kit for your car.

Water and Food
-72 hour kit for your car
-Disruption of electricity
-Kids and Pets
-First Aid and Medical
-Cash stash
-Seasonal considerations
-Safety and Security
-Consumable Supplies
-Gear
-Documentation and Planning

For an overview of level-1 preparedness, refer to the following post:
Prepping and Preparedness 1 -Overview

For an overview of levels 1-4, refer to the following post:
Prepping and Preparedness 1 – 4

Okay lets get started with putting together a 72-hour emergency kit for your car…

Continue reading at Modern Survival Blog: Level-1 Prepping and Preparedness -72 Hour Kit For Your Car