5 Tips for Short-Term Prepping
Secret Garden of Survival - How to Grow a Camouflaged Food-Forest
What are you and your family (and your livestock) going to eat when your food stores run out? Grow a survival garden. And how do you keep others from stealing it? Answer: A camouflaged food forest.
Rainwater Harvesting - How to Prep for Water Shortages
Water tanks, tarps, and a few pieces of PVC pipe can go along way in a disaster. Simple rainwater harvesting systems are inexpensive and easy to build. Advanced systems cost more yet do a lot more. How to keep your family alive in the months following a catastrophic disaster.
18 Essential Items for Your Get Home Bag
Why your family (especially kids) each need a thoroughly packed Get Home Bag. Disasters, rioting, and looting can unfold at anytime -- what to do and what to carry in your Get Home Bag when the objective of the day is to survive.
There was just one problem -- I skipped the basics.
A few months ago a nasty storm left my house without power for nearly two days and several streets in the area were badly flooded. While food and water was not an issue, I was completely unprepared for this most basic disaster. It was a tough 48 hours but a valuable lesson.
I learned a few ways to ready myself for the smaller things.
1. Drive an Off-Road Capable VehicleI've been driving the same Dodge Avenger for years now. It's not the prettiest thing on four wheels but it works and it's all paid for. I never had a problem with the car until that storm. Some of my streets were flooded so badly I could barely leave the neighborhood, leaving me stranded to whatever materials I had saved in my home.
The following week I found a used Jeep Wrangler on Auto Trader and said goodbye to the ole Avenger. I would never advocate a loan on a car, but even something as simple as an old 4x4 Bronco can sell for less than $1000.The ability to drive through minor flooding and road damage is valuable and shouldn't be underestimated.
2. Have a 'Ready' GeneratorWhen SHTF you hopefully have access to backup power for the long-term, but setting up and fueling a generator can take time if it's not ready to go. Keep a small generator in "ready status" for small emergencies. Portable generators are perfect for this and run less than $500 online. Keep it maintained, fueled and stored in an easily accessible area where it's ready to go in minutes.
3. Invest in Solar PowerWith or without an impending disaster, solar power is a great way to keep your home off the grid, or at least less dependent on it. Solar energy can compensate during power outages and also require less spent on generators and fuel (along with the issue with storing large amounts of gasoline). You don't have to overpay by thousands to have professionals install these panels. They're for sale at stores like Home Depot and are completely self-installable with a little know how (only use yours for low watt devices and you'll be just fine -- if you plan to use solar panels for heating, air conditioning and major appliances, expect to pay thousands of dollars or more).
4. Keep an Offsite StorageStorage units aren't just for an EOTW crisis. Even a small disaster might make your home temporarily uninhabitable or destroy some or all of your supplies. Lease a storage unit and fill it with a one-month supply. Companies like Uncle Bobs even offer vehicle storage if needed.
5. Don't Underestimate the Bugout BagThere really should be an "s" behind "bag" because any prepper should pack multiple bugout bags. And these aren't just to grab on the way out of the house, even if it is their primary function. A good bugout bag should have the following:
-- A pistol with extra magazines and ammunition
-- A map
-- Three days worth of water
-- Several days worth of food
Keep this bag away from your home supply. If something were to happen to that part of your home, you'll need that bugout bag for survival, even if you never leave the house. If you can manage it, pack several of these bags (one for each family member) and keep in different locations around your home. If a natural disaster flattens part of your home, or sets it on fire, at the least you or a family member will be able to get to one of these bags.
Have these ready and the next small disaster will be nothing more than a minor inconvenience.
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