Monthly Archives: January 2012

Guest Post by A Fellow Prepper

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 GUEST POST BY MY SISTER-IN-LAW…A WISE WOMAN!
I was recently talking to Ted, a 73-year-old friend who explained how he survived the great depression.  As a boy, he lived in a house on 3-4 acres; his family had a garden and some animals, and his mom canned food.  He explained the great depression this way – “we were poor before the depression and we were poor during the depression.  Life was the same.”   As the U.S. continues to spend trillions of dollars we don’t have, it is almost certain we will experience another great depression in our lifetime.  Let’s hope it’s that simple.  We all know someone who has lived through the great depression and we know how to prepare.  Should the country experience an economic collapse, that’s when we will be in uncharted territory.
Over the past couple of years, my family has been stocking up on household goods and food in our basement-turned-pantry.  Some things we have stored in big plastic bins and forgotten until recently.  As we have reassessed what is down there, I have found that the canned goods are the most easily stored.  I ran across an article that suggesting using a soda can holder for canned goods.  I have 5 and plan to get more.  I purchased them from Wal-Mart and they have been a great addition to our pantry.  They are stackable and a great way to add new cans to the top and pull the older cans from the bottom.  I plan to buy another 10 to 15.
The boxed and packaged goods are another story.  They have a shorter shelf life and I haven’t found a good way to keep a constant rotation going.  We also discovered a package of trail mix with a hole in the side.  Seems the mice love our packaged goods as well.  We have big plastic bins we use to store goods, but these bins are not airtight and the food tends to be forgotten.  If you’ve found a good way to store and rotate packaged goods, please let me know.
Some of our habits have changed over the last several years.  In addition to stocking up on food, we started a garden.  I also spend a lot less time going to the big chain grocery stores and more time visiting the local butcher.  Our butcher had to double his space from last year and he is still having trouble keeping up with demand.
Reuters recently printed a relatively positive article about preppers.   If the media is writing non-mocking articles about people who prepare, then the trend is becoming mainstream.  Those who don’t prep, well, frankly, I believe they’re the crazy ones.  And all the people out there mocking the preppers (whether civilian clothed or in uniform), don’t come knocking on my door in an economic crisis.  And don’t call me un-Christian.  Noah didn’t have any room on the Ark for mockers either.
As the economy stagnates and small companies close or go bankrupt, some new business are thriving.  Farmers markets selling locally grown produce and butcher shops with grass-fed, hormone free meats, eggs and milk are doing well.  Farmland purchases are on the rise, people are saving more money and homebuyers are skipping the McMansions and opting for smaller homes with more land.  The old way of doing things has become the new way again.  I’m glad to be a part of the growing trend that values traditions, the Bible, self-reliance and smaller government.  What’s wrong with honoring our mothers and fathers, grandmothers and grandfathers or our Founding Fathers for that matter?   Some may want us to forget where we came from.   I say we embrace our history before we become it.
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Thanks, Sister.  To the rest of you, I hope you enjoyed hearing from another prepper.  We all have our unique stories and it’s good to hear the accomplishments and even problems others have.
Hope you are having a wonderful weekend.
A Proud Daughter of Texas
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Prepping…Lunacy or Smart Planning?

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Why are Preppers pictured as somewhat on the verge of lunacy?  Take this article for instance, http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/01/21/us-usa-civilization-collapse-idUSTRE80K0LA20120121.  The people in this article are colored as scared, and somewhat delusional.  I know that some of this is as much the fault of a certain type of prepper as it is uninformed and somewhat narrow-minded people.  We all have heard of or read the blogs of those who live for the most horrific disaster imaginable.  These guys have the right to feel this way and I say have at it.  But it does seem to cause those of us who don’t have this mindset to be painted with the same brush so to speak.  Then we have the majority of people who live in denial and think that their lives will go on just the same way for the rest of their lives.  They think, I’m sure, “who are you to dare to suggest anything different”!

I’ll tell you a little about my journey towards preparedness.  I can remember for years hearing that our country is in financial peril, but I really don’t have the financial acumen to understand all of the ins and outs of the reasoning for these statements.  I do know that if I ran my financial life the way the government runs our finances, I would be in jail by now.  That, I realize, is a simplistic comparison.  Anyway, this was my first tiny nudge, but I really didn’t do anything until I moved to the Gulf Coast and started prepping for hurricanes.  But when most people were storing a day or two of food and water, I began to add more and more to the pantry until I had enough to fill the back of our SUV with food.  So along comes IKE and wipes us out.  52″ of water ruined the house and all we had in it.  But we had plenty of food and ways to prepare it, so that was great!  Then a month after IKE, we were in the beginning steps of putting our lives back together, and the bottom dropped out of the economy.  Then my husband was informed that his company would be closing in two months.  That was a low blow after all we had already dealt with.  Luckily the company was able to pull things together and stay open.  But we lived through a few months of not knowing.  This is when I realized that no matter how stable your life seems, there is always a chance for things to go wrong.  This is also when I started listening to The Survival Podcast.

We moved into our new house and lived for two years before more life changes happened.  I won’t go into the details, but at this time I realized that my marriage of 25 years was irreparably damaged and was at an end.  This was never my plan.  I had the dream of being the wife and mom and had lived this life since my children were born.  Well, needless to say, this plan was blown to smithereens!  So, due to my prepping, which my family just laughs about, I was able to pull together an enormous amount of food to send with my husband for his new apartment.  It took a large bite out of my preps, but I felt a lot of it was his too.  Anyway, with so much turmoil at this time, my prepping took a back seat for a few months, but after I settled down some, I started back and really was able to get some things that I couldn’t earlier, due to budget allowances.  My life is very different now and I’m unsure what it will look like down the road, but I know I can make it!

So, all of this is to say that I don’t think that I am crazy, or a conspiracy theorist.  Just a woman who knows that life deals us all some blows at times and I want to cover some of the bases to help ease the sting.  (I think I hit all the clichés there).  I hope this resonates with some of you and shows you that prepping is just a bit of insurance and the path to a small measure of peace of mind, not some morbid waiting for the end of the world.

Take care.

A Proud Daughter of Texas

Paper Prices…Whew!!

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Is it just me, or have you all noticed that the price of paper goods are through the roof?  I just came back from the store and I just couldn’t pay the asked price.  I know…we’ll have to have it sooner or later, but WOW, I’m seriously bummed!  Yes, other prices are going up too.  But this one hits where it hurts.  In case you guys don’t realize it, ladies go through a lot of TP in a week and the blow to the budget is pretty strong.

I read a few months ago about a family who cut up and edged out wash cloths to use instead of toilet paper for “liquid” use only.  They kept a bucket, sort of like a diaper pail, by the toilet and at the end of the day they would run a load of these cloths with soap and bleach.  Sounds like something we all may need pretty soon.  I have actually bought the wash cloths, but haven’t done the prep work to them.  I guess the time is getting closer.  I have a washer that is very water and energy-efficient, so the cost of washing them isn’t high enough to make this idea a loser.

One thing I would like to buy is one of the little countertop washers that kind of look like R2D2.  It doesn’t hold a lot of laundry but it also doesn’t use much water.  It turns by a crank and drains by a hose.  Here’s a link to one at Amazon.  http://www.amazon.com/The-Laundry-Alternative-Wonderwash-SpinDryer/dp/B002C8HR9A    I’m not saying to buy from them and I know I’ve seen better prices, but Amazon usually beats most on shipping.  Anyway, this would be a great little gadget to have.  I know I would rather turn a crank than scrub on a scrubboard!

So, if you have your own beef about a product that you find hard to pay the asked for price, please let me know about it.  It may be something that has slipped by me and we all might need to be thinking of alternatives.

Happy shopping!

A Proud Daughter of Texas

First Aid Prepping

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It’s been about 20 years since I last took a CPR/First Aid class, but this weekend I changed that.  I really enjoyed it, even though we had to be there at 7:30 on a Saturday morning.  I love sleeping in on Saturdays.   Anyway, the instructor was actually pretty funny and the other attendees were friends, so it was a pleasant four hours.  The course was very, very basic and didn’t actually teach me much more than I already knew, but it’s good to refresh your skills.  Especially the CPR skills.  I would like to take a full blown first aid course.  Maybe someday…

For years I have tried to keep a well supplied First Aid Kit.  But in the last year I have stepped it up and added some extras that will help in case there is no doctor around or EMS is unable to get to us in time.   The first of my additions is  called Quick Clot.   This is a product that comes in packets with a mesh bag holding a special clotting agent in them.  They are used in the military to stop the bleeding from gunshot wounds, which to be honest sounds like a lifesaver.  Hopefully we will never need these for gunshot wounds, but the odds of you or a family member experiencing a knife wound or power tool injury are much higher.  So why not be ready.  Another thing I have added is burn gel.  The product, Burn Free, is supposed to be good for small burns and full body burns.  Having been burned as a child, I can tell you that this is a product to have in abundance!  I can’t think of any wound that causes traumatic pain and lasts for days that’s worse than a burn.  If it’s a really bad burn, the effects could last for years.  Also, Silvadene ointment is a wonderful treatment for burns.  It requires a doctor’s prescription, but the jar is large and will last for a long time.  The third thing I have added is a suture kit.  I have no skill with this item, but I do plan to try to get a doctor to teach me to stitch and treat wounds or maybe the better way would be to take college courses.  I’m not ready for school again though.

Everyone has an idea of what needs to be in a First Aid Kit.  We all have personal experiences that influence us or we have special needs for ourselves or family members that require certain supplies.  The most important thing is to go ahead and start a kit, if you havent already done so.  Buy a fishing tackle box and fill it up with boxes and boxes of supplies.  Over time you will be amazed at what you have accomplished!  Warning…others will call you paranoid, worry-wart, crazy and many others that you have already heard if you are a prepper!  As usual, just ignore them.  They will come to you when they need to use your kit though!  No gloating allowed…yeah, right!

I wish you all a safe and happy week.  I havent asked for prayers for our nation lately, but tonight I am doing so.

Take care.

A Proud Daughter of Texas

Parties, Books and Rain

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I know its old news by now, but really?  An Alice in Wonderland Party with the movie cast present at the White House?  Man of the People…I know all of us regular people can afford that.  Hunh… Here’s where Mr. Jim’s sarcasm key would come in handy!

I’m reading “The Eagle has Crashed”, by Ted Lacksonen right now.  It’s set in 2029 and 2030.  I honestly think we don’t have that long before this sort of thing happens, but who really knows.  By the way, I found the book through THE SURVIVAL PODCAST.  Jack had an interview with the author that I havent had a chance to listen to…too busy reading!  These things are fiction of course.  I feel like they do give us an idea of how bad things could get.  Pretty interesting stuff.

The weather has been crazy around here the last couple of days.  I live about ten miles as the crow flies, from the mall in Texas City that was hit by a tornado yesterday and a friend of mine had flooding in his family’s house.  What a mess!   On another note, I sure wish that people would set up water catchment systems so that they could keep their gardens going, if there is another drought this summer. That is the forcast, by the way.  Mine was a simple system of large garbage cans with two goldfish in each.  They ate the mosquito larva and their poop made the water very nutrient rich.  So guys, try something, anything, to ease your water bill and your worry about drought.  You’ll be happy you did when the time comes that you really need it!

Well I guess that’s all for now.  Y’all take care.

A Proud Daughter of Texas