Preparing for Power Outages

snowWith winter just around the corner, it is time to get ready to deal with the severe storms that are sure to plague us this year. There are plenty of dire predictions about the harshness of the coming winter. What it all boils down to is whether or not you are ready for it. You never know what Mother Nature has in store, but you can prepare for the worst and hope for the best. Power outages are pretty common when there is heavy snow or an ice storm. You also have to consider the possibility of an auto accident taking out a power pole.

What do you need to keep in your home to be ready for a power outage?

The standard 72-hour kit that the government recommends you have is great, but there are a few other things you will want to consider. You won’t have power, which means you won’t have a way to cook or even heat your food. Canned food is going to be your best friend. If you have a way to heat water via a woodstove or a campstove, freeze-dried meals are much more satisfying. You will need a gallon of water per day for each member of your family. A power outage will likely be rather short, so a few cases of bottled water will suffice. However, it doesn’t hurt to keep a little extra on hand. Those are items you can store in your pantry or basement.flashlight

You should also have a kit prepared to pull out when the power does go out. Don’t put your kit downstairs in the basement. You need it easily accessible so you are not stumbling around in the dark and risking a serious injury. A small rubber tote with a lid or a crate stored inside a hall closet is a good idea. Some things to put in your kit are as follows;

• LED flashlights with extra batteries
• Solar powered lantern
• Emergency candles and candleholders, matches or a lighter
• A solar charger for your cell phone
• A crank radio
• Handwarmer packs, hats and gloves to stay warm in the house

You can also save yourself a great deal of trouble by investing in a portable generator. This will keep your home supplied with some power to keep your refrigerator running. Don’t wait until the power goes out to go on the hunt for supplies. Do it today. It is almost a guarantee there will be nothing left in the hours after the power goes out. Don’t get caught with your shelves empty and not way to light up your home.

Preparing for a Quarantine—What to Buy Today

Are you prepared to live in your home without contact with the outside world for 21 days or more? If you or a member of your family is put under a mandatory quarantine, you will be asked to stay in your home without the luxury of running to the store to grab groceries, toilet paper or even the local drive thru to grab a burger. Many people are prepared to hole up in their home for three days, but that isn’t going to help when you have to live on the food stores you have for 21 days or more.teriyaki rice

Today is the time to buy the essentials you need to hunker down in your home until the threat of a pandemic passes. You need food, personal hygiene items and tools in case of a power outage. Although a pandemic wouldn’t cause a power outage, a storm or accident could take out a power pole and with limited linemen on hand to fix the problem, you could be sitting in the dark for days.

This is a list of things you will want to have on hand in case you need to stay at home for a few weeks.

• Food-Freeze dried and canned foods are best, just in case the power does go out. There are plenty of options in the freeze-dried food category that will keep your family well fed with a variety of tasty dishes. Don’t forget to stock up on some of your favorite snacks as well. If you have kids in the home, their typical daily snack will help keep them content.
• Personal hygiene-Toilet paper is a luxury you can never have too much of. Buy enough to keep your family happy for at least a couple of months. Other things you will need to make sure you have a supply of includes; toothpaste, feminine hygiene items, bath soap, laundry soap, dish soap and shampoo. If you have a baby in the house, make sure you have plenty of diapers and wipes on hand.

• Light-You will want to have flashlights and candles on hand in case there is a power outage. LED flashlights use less battery-power and will last longer. Make sure you have an extra set of batteries. Don’t forget matches and candleholders.

boardgames• Entertainment-Living in your home for 21 days will likely leave you climbing the walls. Keep some games, cards, puzzles and various crafts on hand to keep you and the family busy. If you have ever considered learning how to knit or paint, you have the perfect excuse for learning how to do so! Have you been dreaming about hours of scrapbooking? Wish granted!

• Communication-Keep your cell phone charged so you can communicate with friends and loved ones. You should also have a crank radio or battery-powered radio on hand just in case the power is out. You need to know when it is safe for you to go out as well as keep informed about what is happening in the world.

• Medicines-If you or somebody in your house takes prescription medicines, as your doctor to write a script for an extra month’s supply. This is nice to have around just in case anyways. As long as it is not a controlled substance, most doctors won’t have a problem writing out a larger prescription.

Take steps now to avoid the chaos that will ensue if a mandatory quarantine is issued for your family, neighborhood or city. You don’t want to be forced to rely on government services to provide you with what you need.

Preparing for an Ebola Pandemic

With the recent outbreak of the Ebola virus crossing the ocean and spreading outside of the three hardest hit areas, there is some concern among people in the United States and across Europe. People are gearing up to ride out a pandemic of epic proportions. Although it is unlikely, if the virus does become a serious problem, you may need to hunker down in your home for a few days or weeks while the CDC and other government officials get a handle on this deadly virus. There is no shame in being prepared to live out of your home in an effort to avoid picking up the virus.

masksYou will want to get some supplies today, while they are still available. There has already been a mass run on certain things like nitrile gloves and face masks. You will want to have enough food, water and first aid supplies on hand to ride out the worst of the outbreak. It would be best to plan on a 30-day supply of goods. You never know how long it will take officials to take care of the situation. The water supply may also become contaminated. Only water purification methods can remove viruses.Filters do not remove viruses. You can eliminate the risk of drinking contaminated water by stocking up on bottled water today.

A bug out bag or 72-hour bag for each member of the family is also a good idea. If you have a friend or relative who lives outside of the area where Ebola is running rampant, you will want to get out of town for a bit. It may be a bit chaotic on the highways as there will likely be a mass exodus out of cities and towns where Ebola is believed to be. There may even be a quarantine order in place, which will make escaping next to impossible. A bag that is equipped with the gear you need to survive may be your only hope at getting out of your neighborhood and into rural, less-populated areas where Ebola hasn’t spread.

food storageKeep in mind; the CDC insists the virus isn’t spread through the air, but there are plenty of scientists and researchers who say otherwise. The number of new cases that continue to be diagnosed also lends to the idea that the virus is airborne in small particles i.e. sneezing and coughing. Do what you can today to protect your family for tomorrow.

Sanitation without Power in Survival Situation

Many people focus their energy on prepping food and water in case of an emergency. While this is certainly a necessary task, it is important to focus on all aspects of life without power or access to running water. In the aftermath of any serious event, many government and city resources are going to be unavailable. This includes sanitation and clean drinking water. We rely on electricity to clean the water and pump it into our homes. When there are no sanitation systems, we not only lose running water to our home, we lose the ability to flush toilets. There will be no trash collectors either. This creates a potentially lethal scenario of people living in and around human waste with no way to take care of personal hygiene needs.bathroom-2193_640

You need to plan ahead in order to avoid dealing with things like dysentery, mice, cockroaches and a long list of other unpleasant and potentially dangerous problems that arise when sanitation is ignored.

Toilets—Invest in a camp toilet that you can use when there is no water. You can also use a 5-gallon bucket lined with heavy duty garbage bags. When the bag is half full, remove the bag and bury it at least 300 feet from your home and any bodies of water. You could also dig a hole in the ground and place a bucket over the top. When the hole becomes ¾ full, fill it in with dirt. You want at least 12 inches of dirt over the top of the waste. Place rocks or large logs over the area to keep animals from digging.

garbage-heap-354510_640Trash-Get familiar with recycling and repurposing various items. No, there won’t be any recycling centers open, but you will be surprised at what you can do with items you normally throw out. Learn about composting. You can use up a great deal of your kitchen waste by tossing it in a compost bin to later use in your garden. You can burn trash as long as well. Avoid burning chemical containers and most plastics. Use the plastics to store water or as containers for gardening. You can also bury the trash. Dig a hole at least 3 feet deep and cover it with 18 inches of dirt.

Hygiene—Use soap and water to wash your hands frequently. Pour water over your hands rather than dipping them in a bowl of water. Use hand sanitizer in between hand washings to keep your hands as clean as possible.

It is extremely important you work hard at maintaining a relatively clean environment to reduce the spread of disease and viruses.

Emergency Survival First Aid Kit Needs Explained

Your emergency food and water storage is extremely important to your survival following a major catastrophe, but there is something else you need to consider as well—first aid. There isn’t going to be doctors, hospital emergency rooms or even walk-in clinics for you to visit in the aftermath of a natural disaster or some other devastating event. You may very well end up being your own doctor for the days or possibly months following something big. Are you prepared to take care of your injuries and the injuries of your friends and families? It is unlikely every person you know will come through a tornado or terrorist attack completely unscathed. You need to have the supplies on hand to treat minor injuries to prevent them from becoming potentially life-threatening.

first-aid-kit-59645_640You need a well-stocked first aid kit. The following items will ensure you can treat most injuries. However, the best first-aid kit isn’t going to do much if you don’t know how to use it. Do yourself and your family a huge favor and take the time today to learn basic first aid. Enroll in a class at your local hospital, Red Cross or community college. The classes typically last a few hours and participation fees are under $50. The information you learn may just save somebody’s life one day.

First Aid Supplies

• 2 2×2 gauze pads and 2 4×4 gauze pads
• Band-aids in varying sizes
• 1 role of gauze
• 1 tube of antibiotic cream
• 1 role of medical tape
• 1 triangular bandage
• Antihistamine tablets
• Pain reliever, ibuprofen
• Aspirin
• Wound closure strips or butterfly stitches
• ACE bandage
• CPR face guard
• Anti-diarrhea medicine
• Tweezers
• Nitrile gloves
• First Aid manual

This is a basic kit. As with anything in the prepping world; the more the merrier. You can never have too many medical supplies. Bandages, gloves and most medical supplies will store for decades. You will need to update your supply of over-the-counter medicines. Include your first aid kit in your food rotation regiment and you can ensure that it stays up to date.medical kit

Don’t take chances. Get your first aid supplies stockpile started today. Buy in bulk for more cost savings. Don’t forget to add anything specific to your family’s medical needs like inhalers, Epi Pens or insulin. Consider learning about natural medicine in the event the world is unable to recover from a major event for several months or even years.

Survival Made Better with Solar Power

As you do what you can to prepare your family to survive a catastrophe, you may focus your energy on food and water. While these are clearly some very important components of survival, you may also want to expand your prepping to other areas that can make survival a little easier. When it comes to planning to survive an extreme situation, there is something called the Law of 3’s that all survivalists live by. As a person preparing to survive a drastic situation, you too need to be aware of this rule so you can prepare a little better.

Keep your family protected and safe.

Keep your family protected and safe.

Law of 3s

3 Hours to Find Shelter
3 Days to Find Water
3 Weeks to Find Food

You have taken care of the food and water and you are probably planning on bugging in or holing up in your home, which will take care of your shelter needs. However, your home isn’t going to be quite as comforting as it once was. You won’t have power and without power you won’t have lights, warm water or even a way to cook or recharge any of your electronic devices.

You can give yourself the joy and luxury of electricity by planning ahead. Many people will invest in portable generators, which are great, but they require some kind of fuel to run. Fuel will be in short supply after a major event and depending on what kind of situation you are dealing with, it could take months or years before fuel is returned to store shelves and gas stations.
Alternative energy is the answer. Solar power is growing in popularity and becoming very mainstream. That means; it is becoming much more affordable as well. As demand continues to increase, the technology continues to improve. Think back to the first computers. Remember how big and bulky they were? Well, solar panels are following the same path as computers. They are no longer these giant, fragile panels. The solar cells are small and mounted directly to a home’s roof or you can create small panels that produce enough electricity to give you a sense of

You don’t have to go all out and switch your home to solar energy. You can buy a few panels to use if there is a major failure of the power grid. Get familiar with solar energy and how you can use it to keep your home up and running when the rest of the country is in the dark. Check out the options available to you that are perfect for survival situations.

Preparing for Winter Weather Driving

With summer coming to an end and a forecast for a brutal winter ahead of us, it is a wise decision to prepare an emergency kit for the car. You never know when you are going to be left sitting in traffic due to an accident or possibly being in an accident yourself on some deserted road. There have been too many stories of people getting stuck out in the middle of nowhere. Some of these people have attempted to walk for help and unfortunately, there are plenty who didn’t make it. A winter storm can take you by surprise. This is why you always need to be prepared. You need to be prepared to survive for several hours or possibly days with what is in your car.snowyroad

These are some items you will want to include in your emergency car kit.

• First Aid Kit
• Power Bar or some kind of energy bar
• Trail Mix
• Bottled water
• Cell phone charger
• Emergency blanket
• Flashlight and extra batteries (LEDs are best)
• Book or magazines to keep you entertained
• Wool socks
• Wool blanket
• Rain gear
• Hat and gloves
• Camp shovel

Those are the items necessary to keep you alive while you wait for help to arrive or for the road to clear enough that you can safely continue on your journey. You should also keep a small car kit on hand just in case of a breakdown. If you can fix your car so you don’t have to sit on the side of the road that is always the best option. Take the time to learn some basic car repair skills. Keep these items in the trunk of your car, just in case. stuck

• Jumper cables
• Fluids: oil, antifreeze, brake fluid, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, washer fluid
• Screwdrivers
• Duct tape
• Road flares/reflective signs
• Bright cloth or sign to alert other drivers to your position
• Fuses

You can find road kits that include everything you need in a single case for easy storage. Now is the time to prepare for winter driving. Adding these things to the trunk of your car can mean the difference between life and death.

Water—Difficult, but Necessary Component of Survival Storage

Water is likely going to be your biggest challenge when it comes to creating a healthy emergency survival supply kit. Water is big and bulky and is just kind of obnoxious to store. But, it is absolutely crucial to your survival. You need to store at least 1 gallon of water for each member of the family per day. If you are building up a 30-day supply, things can get out of hand pretty quick. There are a few options that we will discuss here.

Stackable Containersstackablewater

These are huge space savers! You can store a little or a lot with these individual containers that are constructed to stack together neatly. Each container holds just over 3 gallons of water. There are several different options to use when it comes to building up your supply. Start out with a few containers and buy a few each month to create a wall of water or spring for the large waterbrick container kit that holds 112 gallons of water. The best part about these containers is they have handles. Once a container is empty, you can carry it to a lake, river, stream or wherever to fill it up again. Carrying 3 gallons of water is manageable so you won’t have any trouble getting the water back to your retreat.

Jerry Cans

jerrycanLtBlue_lg_200These look a lot like gas cans, but they are foodsafe, meaning you can carry water in them. Sometimes it simply isn’t feasible for you to store a month’s worth of water in your home. If you live near water, you can use it to supply your family with their necessary water. However, carrying it home can be a huge problem. Using pots or empty water bottles is inefficient. The jerry cans are perfect and since they have lids, you won’t have to worry about the water splashing out.


All water you collect or manage to draw from your tap after a disaster of any kind is considered dangerous. ALL water. You must filter and/or purify it before drinking. Deadly bacteria and viruses are hiding in most water sources. If you have collected water, you need to purify it by boiling it or using a chemical treatment (water purification tablets) or run it through a filter. Don’t risk your life by drinking tainted water.

Water is tough to store in the house, but using the proper containers can make it easy and keep you from having to walk miles to the nearest water source on a regular basis. Investing in water containers is one you won’t regret.

Top 10 Things To Disappear After a Disaster

firewoodIf you are preparing for some disaster that will leave you forced to rely on yourself and what you have stored away, you are ahead of the game. Storing food and water is important for survival, but there are other things people tend to overlook when building up an emergency supply of food and water. It isn’t all about the food! There are some other items that are going to fly off store shelves within hours and days of a major disaster. You are probably going to be surprised to see the top 10 things that are going to be in high demand.

Check out this list and consider adding these items to your emergency preps.

• Generators. We love our electricity! Electricity is one of the things that makes us feel normal and somewhat safe and secure.
• Water purifying methods are going to go next. Water is crucial to survival and people will be scrambling to get their hands on tablets, filters and purifiers.lifesaver bottle
• Toilets—those little portable toilets available in the camp section of stores will be in high demand. People have to use the bathroom and when the sewer system is out, they have to go somewhere.
• Dry wood for burning is going to be at a premium. You can’t just run out and chop down a tree and expect it to burn. Wood needs to be dried for at least 6 months or up to a year to make it suitable for wood heat.
• Oil for lanterns and lamps goes next. People need light and when the generators are gone, it is going to be all about lanterns. Stock up on oil for your lights.
• Fuel for your campstove is fairly inexpensive today. Those little propane tanks will be invaluable when there is no electricity. Buy them now before they are gone.
• Guns and ammunition are the seventh item to disappear. People are not immediately going to start raiding the stores for guns, but they will eventually. If you need a gun, it is something you will want to purchase before a disaster.
• Little kitchen tools like manual can-openers and manual beaters are going to be pretty important. Canned food will be in great supply, but if people can’t open it, it doesn’t do any good.
• Sugar! Anything sweet will soon be gone. We all have a sweet tooth and when things are rough, cravings for sugar will be in full swing. Sweets give us comfort and when things are haywire, that is going to be important.sugar
• Dried foods finally make an appearance. Wheat, rice and beans are all going to become very valuable.

Now that you know the top 10 things that are going to disappear first, it is time to take a look at your food storage and adjust accordingly.

Heirloom Seeds—Does It Really Matter?

self-sufficient gardensIn the survival world, you will hear a lot about people storing seeds in their long term emergency storage. It isn’t just seeds they are storing. No, people are storing what are known as heirloom seeds. If you have ever gone to the store to buy these seeds because it seems like the thing to do, you have probably noticed they cost twice to three times as much as the cheap seed packets that are sold for about a dollar. You may think it seems silly to spend that much money on seeds when they basically all produce the same veggies. They don’t!

seedsHeirloom seeds are more expensive because you will have a steady, renewable food source with those particular seeds. Unlike the more common and less expensive seeds on the market, heirlooms seeds produce vegetables with seeds that can be replanted. You may not have realized this, but the common seeds produce veggies with seeds that are not suitable for replanting. The seeds will either not sprout or will produce plants that don’t produce actual vegetables.

Heirloom seeds are typically defined as those that were used before World War II or basically, before scientists got their hands on the seeds and created various hybrids that were easier to grow by the average gardener and produced a lot more. While this is a win-win for most, the hybrids may be plentiful, but they are not quite as delicious as their heirloom counterparts. Taste was not a big factor when those hybrid seeds were being created. Sure, a homegrown tomato from a typical seed is probably still better tasting than one you would find in the grocery store, but a homegrown tomato from an heirloom seed is absolutely fantastic.

The bottom line is this—in order to grow a garden that will produce year after year, you need heirloom seeds. After things have gone sideways, you won’t be able to run to the garden store to buy new seeds for the new growing season. You need to have a way to keep your family fed with fresh fruits and vegetables. Heirloom seeds truly do matter. Don’t settle for anything less.