Thursday, August 16, 2012

Things that you can do even in the suburbs

Yes, I prep for the upcoming emergency that will happen someday.  I believe that everyone should keep at least 30 days worth of food and water in their house just in case of lost job, weather emergency, epidemic and what not.  Anything that can keep you from getting to the grocer or if you need to conserve what funds you have.  I also believe in sustainable living.  Don't get me wrong I am not one of those people who believe we should all live together sharing our goods, holding hands singing Kumbaya while flowers grow up around our feet, but I do believe that part of prepping is living as frugally as you can and living a sustainable life is the best way to do that.  Grow your own food, if you have a diesel engine make your own fuel, collect the rain water, learn to can and dehydrate your harvests, there are a lot of ways you can do it.

1. Grain Mill

You can get these hand operated or electric operated.  While the electrical ones are a lot easier to use they wouldn't be practical if for some reason the power grid went down for any length of time.  You can buy grains in bulk at most organic type grocery stores such as Trader Joe's or Wholefoods, or you can grow them yourselves.  This is actually in  my monthly budget for this month, trying to decide if I want to buy one or find plans to make my own.  Either way once I have one I will be using it for now on.  I do not see the reason to buy all these things on the off chance we may need them so most of the gadgets I want to have if the SHTF will be used even if it doesn't.  Can't wait to grow my own grains and make my own flour for cooking.  

2. Rain Barrels
Warning: Please check with your local laws about collecting rain, some cities or states claim it is illegal to catch water as it belongs to the public.

I love these and I want some!  These are especially good for suburban preppers who are on city water. Easy to build and they are on my DIY list (so keep your eyes out for that future project).  If the grid goes down so will our water supply installing these as soon as you can is highly recommended.  Right now a large part of our country is in a severe drought.  I have friends who have lost most of their garden this year because it's not raining and their city/state is under water conservation.  With these guys set up to gather the rain that does come down your garden should be safe and in an SHTF scenario it can also be used for drinking, cooking and bathing (and the soft water is so good for your hair in case you are a princess like me).  I live in an HOA rental so I am limited by what I can do, but I think in the back yard out of sight of the neighbors I can put in a couple of these.  Again this is something I can use in any scenario and it still makes sense to use them even if things are okay.  I am not just about prepping for an emergency but about living as self sustainable as I can.

3. Solar Oven

Another DIY project for you to look out for from me.  I may be a princess and like my gadgets but I hate cooking indoors when it's so nice outside.  Plus I live in Texas where Hell has nothing on our weather here so it gets too hot to use the oven during the summer and fall.  Having one of these would make things so much better.  Not only am I not heating up my house but I am saving gas and electricity. Not using my gas oven saves the gas and not having to run the AC because the house heats up saves on the electric bill.  I have friends who use theirs all the time.  One friend even made her daughters birthday cake and cupcakes using hers she built herself.  This is one of the projects I am looking the most forward to.  This princess knows how to use a drill and isn't afraid of a hammer.

4. Food Dehydrator

Ah yes, another great way of preserving food for your prepping lifestyle is dehydration.  I see a lot of ads for dehydrated meats, veggies, fruits and all that and then I look at the price HOLY COW!.  If I had to wait to prep until I could buy all that I would starve to death when the SHTF.  By learning to garden and store your harvests for future use you can save tons of money on your grocery bill and on your prepping bill.  I have friends that have spent thousands on buckets of MREs but invest no time in learning how to feed themselves when those run out.  I like food, good food, fresh food if possible maybe that is what makes me a princess but I don't want to eat MREs, I will if I have to and I do have a few in my bug out bags but I don't want to only survive I want to thrive.  Besides if you can preserve your extra food harvests you always have something to trade for (like coffee LOL).  If you don't have a garden hit up your local farmer's markets, usually at the end of the day they offer what's wilted and left for discount prices.  Buy it up take it home and preserve it however you like.  

And the best for last.....

5.  The Garden

This is not a picture of my garden darn it!  But is definitely something I want to start soon.  Like I said before we rent and are not allowed to dig up the yard so I will be learning square foot gardening or using containers. Yes, I am that determined!  Here in Texas we have a very long growing season (where I am at mid March to mid November) so I should be able to keep growing most of the year.  I see no reason why everyone can't have at least one tomato plant and a small lettuce and herb garden.  The important thing to remember is to buy heirloom seeds or plants.  You can save the seeds from them to grow next season.  If the SHTF you may not be able to guarantee a stock of seeds except Monsanto's franken-seeds from retailers.  By using heirloom seeds you guarantee yourself stock for next season and something to barter for other supplies.  

Please if you have any ideas or thoughts of what I have posted or something I may have left out that you think is important leave a comment.  As always just remember I am not here to argue but to learn.

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