I get asked on a regular basis what someone can do to be prepared. I am in no way an expert on this topic and there are probably tens of thousands of people more prepared than I. None the less I was the person they came to for this, whether it’s because they knew that I was a prepper and either they were curious or they felt that I was a safe bet at not judging them.
First step to preparedness in my opinion is stocking food and water. You could be worried about any emergency including a fictitious zombie apocalypse, and you still would need food and water for you and your family to survive. I never recommend going out and buying a thousand dollars worth of freeze dried food or MREs. They may serve the purpose and last almost forever, but for the price you could have 10 times the amount of canned or dry goods and many other items you should have. The food you should be stocking up on are canned goods or dried goods with high calories and high protein. Make sure as you are getting long term storage food, that you get things that you and your family already eat, you don’t want to get stuck with a bunch of nasty food no one likes. The best method I have heard and used for getting food is “copy canning” as Jack Spirko and others call it. Ever time you go grocery shopping, instead of one or two cans of green beans, get two or four. You also don’t have to go out and buy $100 worth of food off the bat, just do copy canning a little at a time and if adds up quick. Storing water takes up a lot of room, probably more than anything else. There are a lot of storage methods from gallon jugs to 500 gallon reservoir tanks, but my preferred and cheapest, 2 liter coke bottles. They are built to take pressurized drinks and sturdy enough to be dropped and kicked around. Every time a family member empties one, I grab it and wash it out good, then fill it with tap water. Another item that I’d recommend just as a precaution is a water filter just incase there is a chance of contamination. Sawyer makes a cheap in filter system that screws onto a soda bottle. You can see and get one here.
Everyone poops… And because of that, your family and you need be ready for the call of nature. In a disaster situation though, bathroom calls have more importance due to sickness and contamination. Stock up on toilet paper, baby wipes, trash bags, bleach, and hand sanitizer. A five gallon bucket with a sturdy trash bag can be used as a make shift toilet. When done, seal it shut and dispose away from drinking water and food.
First aid and basic medication should be stored as well. In a disaster or a any emergency, hospitals are going to be overwhelmed. Basic over the counter medicine can handle a lot of basic illnesses. Research medicinal herbs, many are easy to find in nature or can be grown in gardens. With first aid kits and supplies, I advise you to never buy higher than your skill level, it will save you money on wasted stuff. Good sources for survival medicine would be our friends Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy at Doom and Bloom or the Patriot Nurse
When it comes to defending your preps, always remember that if people don’t know you have a stock, they are less likely to come wanting it. A lot of people put more importance in the defending of their stockpile than into the stock itself. It is harder to feed your family with bullets than a 3 month supply of canned goods. Defense is still important to keep you, your family, and property safe. I recommend getting at least one weapon (remember 2 is 1 and 1 is none) and train with it or them. Depending on where you live, you may be limited on these tools. No matter if you are limited, find out what you can have if not a firearm and train with it.
The simplest step to preparedness is knowledge and common sense. Read and train with different survival skills. Learn to grow a vegetable garden, how to raise animals, and how to hunt. Look at the food that you have in your cupboards and find the actual food items with expiration dates over a year. Start buying more of that food when you go grocery shopping and start storing that away.
There are many more aspects to preparedness, but focus on these first. Start by trying to build up 30 days worth of food and water for you and your family, once there, get to three months. I recommend not worrying about “bug-out bags” or off grid living until you know your family can eat, drink, and be safe and healthy for at least three months without the grocery store or pharmacy.
If you have another tip, please share in the comments below.
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