I’m so sorry I have not been able to update this site as much as I should be doing. Over the past couple of weeks, life has been keeping me very very busy. I’m moving to a new home in Omaha. This move is fantastic. We are going to save money, be closer to the office, and be closer to most of our friends.
The Lady Prepper and I are spending most of our evenings planning for the baby’s arrival in October. There has been lots of cloth diaper buying and classes as well as appointments with the midwife. Having our first child has really made me look at the way I prep.
I’m also very active in a local prepping group. I have been busy building them a website as well as bringing resources together for people.
Work-wise I have recently launched two large projects:
Church safe is an Internet-based emergency planning software. This product was designed to make emergency response and planning quick and efficient for churches and congregations of any size. We will be rolling out a few new modules and other features in the coming months. For updates check out our twitter @Churchsafe and facebook
Goal Mixer is a Internet-based networking and resource group for anyone looking to accomplish goals. These goals could be as small as wanting to learn how to knit to finding a co-founder for your business idea. Twitter is @GoalMixer
I really want to touch again on Reduce – Reuse – Recycle. I have gotten a lot of questions about my post on Preparedness Blogs . I’m going to give some more in-depth info here.
When you are out shopping, really pay attention to packaging. Try to buy items that have containers or packages you can use more than once. I recommend avoiding packages all together. This honestly will help remove processed food from your diet. Don’t use the plastic bags for produce. Don’t buy boxed side dishes or meals. When buying items such as flour and beans and most other dry goods, see if you can find a local store that has bulk bins. Also, reuse your grocery bags. Most stores will remove five or ten cents off your total bill. I know it’s not much, but every little bit counts.
Milk jugs have so many uses it’s not funny. 2-liter soda bottles also have more than one life purpose. Wine bottles make great candle holders and other great crafty ideas. If you get into making your own wine and beer, you will love having lots of them on hand. Sour cream, whipped cream, and butter tubs are great for storing leftovers and packing lunch. All glass containers can be used to store some sort of goods.
If you are breaking down old furniture or thinking of throwing something made of wood or steel away, stop and think about other things you can build from the raw materials. I have seen raised beds built out of old bookshelves. I have seen windmills built from car alternators and slats from an old vinyl siding.
I think preppers really marginalize the topic of keeping clean and being able to take showers or a bath. Now, I know many of you are thinking “Joe, it’s a waste of water”. Well, if your reserves are low then of course it is. But if it’s raining like cats and dogs and you’re collecting that water or you have a nice surplus, why not treat yourself a little.
I’m not talking about a 20 minute shower here. Try this out: Hop in your shower at your normal time. Stop up the drain. Just get your body wet and a wash rag and your hair. Turn the shower off and scrub up. Turn the water back on and rinse off. Don’t waste time relaxing. Now look at how full your tub is. If you’re using a nice light soap or something eco-friendly, that water can go right into your planters or garden beds.
If you’re trapping rain water, then a quick filtering should be more than enough of a water treatment for your showering needs. Lady preppers will agree that being able to wash your hair every so often is going to keep them much happier. Also, who wants to be hunkered down with a bunch of stinky people.
I have been buying natural handcrafted soaps from Sarahbeecreations and just vacuum sealing them. These soaps are handmade and have an amazing light scent that is not overpowering. She also supplies nice smelling soy candles that give off a nice scent. This will make your bug out location or bug in location much more comfortable.
The most practical thing you can do is appreciate what you have now and work for it to be better. That means starting where you’re at already. Not everyone can pack up and move to a ten acre farm for various reasons. Not right away, at least.
Best Advice ever from Ghillieman
I have been getting questions from readers about self defense. First off, I’m not a master or black belt in any self defense or martial arts form. I’m not a firearms expert or trainer. Everything is this article is my personal opinion.
I firmly believe knowing a form of hand-to-hand combat and close quarters combat will be very helpful in more than just a shit-hit-the-fan scenario. Being able to defend yourself and get out of potentially deadly situations is key.
A key part of survival is defense: defense of yourself and defense of those around you. This is not a topic to be taken lightly. Don’t just run down to your local tae kwan do school and lay down money on classes. You should really do your homework and a little research before committing.
Some things to look for.
1. Can you watch a full class? (Most places are more than happy to have prospective students watch a basic class)
2. Lineage: Who did they train under? Who certified them? Whose standards do they uphold? No instructor or school should have a problem openly coming forward with this information.
3. Interaction: Honestly, you need to like and get along with your instructor. If you don’t think you can click, then it’s time to look for another trainer.
I have also been asked what my style of choice is. To be honest, I fell in love with a Filipino martial arts style called Modern Arnis. After a couple of years I was introduced to NSI (Natural Spirit International). These courses of training gave me a large self defense toolbox. While bouncing and doing private security, I felt comfortable in any room as long as I had everyday objects well within my reach.
For more information, check out these links.
I have been getting about keeping gold and silver and other metals. Let us just start with this. I am not a financial adviser. This is not financial advice. Please do your own home work and make your own decision. I do recommend that you clear up as much debt as you can before you start budget and invest in metals. silver and gold bullion will do you no good if you don’t have a place to live and food to eat and the repossession agent want your car.
I get my gold/Silver and coins from a few different locations.
- Local coin shop
Look around your area for a local coin store, not one of those gold buying places but a real coin shop. The kind of place you would take your kids into or some one interested in creating a coin collection. Most stores carry silver and gold bullion as well as junk silver. If you buy in large enough amounts or become a frequent customer most places will work out deals on junk silver. Also you can often get a small percent knocked off your transaction by paying in cash.
I often buy large collections and lots of “Junk Silver” of f of ebay for rather cheap. If you keep up on searches and set a budget you can often find great deals. I have also found smaller silver and gold bullion bars and rounds on Ebay as well (Such as 5oz bars). Really watch who you buy from. Go with sellers who have a good history of coin and bullion sales. The Collectible card games guy turned coin store might be a bit risky.
Now for those of you who are new, Junk silver is change or coin printed before 1965 . You can check to see how much some of these coins are worth by checking out Coinflation. The first day I found out about Coinflation I went through a huge container of change I had. I found over $20.00 in silver coins. I know look at every peace of change I get.
If you are worried about fakes or counterfeits let me know in the comments and I will put something together.
I’m sorry for this post folks. I did not run it through my editor first.
A major component of survival is self reliance. A large part of self reliance is being able to produce and store your own food. Now is the time to start thinking about where inside your house can you safely place planters. If you have animals you should take into consideration places your cats or dogs cannot reach. Also, if you have a nice balcony or porch, you can place planter boxes out there, or even planting in a small square in the ground.
Once you have identified all the places you can shove planters and boxes or other growing containers, you will want to measure them and sketch them out on a pad. This will roughly allow you to decide what size containers you can use and how much food you will be able to grow. Now you can take a look at the food consumption list you created earlier. That list will help you decide on some herbs and vegetables for your garden.
The price savings will not be huge, but having a full culinary indoor herb garden will save on your grocery bill. If you’re like me and you love Italian food, especially pesto, growing your own herbs will take 7 and 8 dollar items and turn them into .75 items. Also if you enjoy fresh salad, you can grow things like spinach and Romaine lettuce indoor year round as well.
You will also want to look into bushes and shorter variates of plants. There are lots of bush-variety beans and tomatoes that can be planted. Don’t be afraid to over plant. If you grow more than you can eat, don’t worry – it won’t go to waste. In future posts we will go over canning and storing your own home grown food.
Some Great resources
So in water part 1, we covered the important of water and roughly how much you will need. Today I noticed that The Ready store is running a 30% of sale on water storage and water products. Yes water is a horse I will beat over and over again. It’s much easier to come by food than it is good clean drinking water.
I’m thinking about ordering the 14-Gallon Waterbrick storage kit. These bricks are easy to stack and easy to hide in closets and tight spaces inside of your apartment. There durable and each brick holds 3.5 gallons of water.
It’s Thursday and I’m working from home. So I figured instead of more typing, I would just throw up some audio.