As I look back over my own life and through the generations as far as our family is concerned, I think our biggest risk is not a collapse of the power grid, nor TEOTWAWKI, but financial hardship due to loss of employment, loss of a working partner, changing social circumstances or a slow, insidious reduction of buying power at a time when there is low income. So with this in mind here is a quiz:
- Do you have a full store cupboard to see you through a bad patch of three months? Twelve months? If you need some ideas or help getting going, check out this complete survival food list.
- Do you have a vegetable garden that produces enough fruit and vegetables to be useful?
- Can you survive using only one third of the power that others with the same size family do? Do you know how much power and water you use daily? Do you know how many units of power you use and how much it costs you to oven roast a meal, do a load of washing, use the slow cooker?
- Do you have solar panels or other ways of producing power for your use? Can you use your solar/other power if the grid goes down?
- Do you have access to alternative fuels to keep warm in winter if you cannot afford electricity, oil or gas? If you have to chop wood, are you fit enough/well enough to do it? If it is really hot where you live, do you know how to keep cool without an air conditioner?
- Do you have a form of cooking that is energy efficient depending on where you live? Eg: solar oven or the equivalent of a hay box for cooking in?
- Do you know how long your towels, sheets, tea towels and dish cloths last with normal use? Two years? Ten years? Do you have at least 20 years supply of linen for your current household?
- Do you know where you can buy second hand goods at cents in the dollar? Are you well known and well thought of there, so that if something comes in you are looking for they might put it aside for you?
- Can you make your own soap, washing powder, personal cleansers and moisturizers and do you have a 12 month supply of washing soda, borax, bicarb soda, lye, oil, and essential oils?
- Do you have a system to dry your clothes if you cannot afford to use your drier?
- Do you live within walking distance or cycling distance of the local shops, the library and medical facilities? Are you fit enough to do it?
- Do you grow your own herbs and know how to use them to meet your health needs?
- Have you weaned yourself off medically prescribed medications by improving your health? Or do you have 12 months supply of medications? Do you know how to improve your health after a medical diagnosis without using expensive medications? Do you know the risks of using medical and alternative approaches to managing your health?
- Have you paid off your mortgage or alternatively have 12 months of payments aside for the mortgage or rent?
- If you use a credit card do you pay it off completely each month?
- Do you have sufficient money put away to pay for the next 12 months of insurances, utilities and local government taxes/rates/levies?
- Do you have emergency money put aside for unexpected expenses such as a car crash, unexpected medical expenses or a suicidal child ringing up from the other side of the country or world and you need to get to them?
- Are your hobbies reasonably priced? That is, can you scale them back in times of acute financial shortage while still being able to enjoy them?
- Are you increasing your employment skill sets? If you are retired you still need to be increasing your skills or keeping them current, so that you are perceived as being useful in your community rather than a burden.
- Do you value your possessions and keep them in good order, so they will last longer before you have to replace them?
This is supposed only to be a start. What other questions can you be thinking about?
Wow, Harriet! What a powerful post! I’m newer to to getting prepared, but you raise a lot of points IDK if I would have considered…TY for opening our eyes!
Good review, Harriet. I’m seeing some “weak spots”…getting back to work!
Thanks Harriet for the insightful post! I know I fail on several points!
Great article Harriet. Thanks for reminding us that we need to constantly review our own preparedness, as well as our abilities to get through hard times.
Just a quick new note on Forum use:
I’ve just discovered (see: I’m learning, too!) that if you get more than X number of posts at each topic, you may have more than one page of “answers” or “comments” to any given topic.
When you are on a specific “topic” (you’ve clicked in to read about that item) look at the bottom left for each topic; the page you are on will read in black; subsequent pages will still be blue. Just click forward (i.e., page 2, etc.) on pages to read all comments for that particular post. The newest comments will be the last posted for each topic.
Well, I’m as ready as I am, and not ready enough!
Hey, found this great sounding recipe at DIY Natural today: spiced homemade pumpkin pancakes. Sounds like a goremutt dinner to me! ;)
2 eggs, preferably from pastured hens
1 ¾ cups buttermilk, kefir, or sour milk (find kefir starters or learn how to make your own kefir)
¼ cup unsweetened applesauce (learn how to make your own)
1 cup pumpkin puree (find it here or make your own)
2 ¾ cups whole wheat flour (find organic sprouted whole wheat flour here)
2 Tablespoons cane sugar or maple syrup (find natural sweeteners here)
2 teaspoons non-aluminum baking powder (find it here)
1 teaspoon baking soda (find our favorite here)
1 teaspoon sea salt (find unrefined sea salt here)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon (find organic cinnamon here)
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (learn how to make your own)
Whisk eggs with a fork in a large mixing bowl.
Add buttermilk/kefir/sour milk, applesauce, and pumpkin. Stir until all wet ingredients are combined.
Add dry ingredients and mix well with fork until few lumps are noticeable.
Pour pancakes onto pre-heated griddle. (I use an electric griddle set at 400°.) Flip pancakes when bubbles appear on the surface. Makes about 25-30.
Serve pancakes with real butter, pure maple syrup, or even homemade whipped cream (yum!). Chocolate chips and/or walnuts also make a great addition.
If you fly, you need to know this.
If you don’t already have a plan, ya’ might want to make one now.
Uh Oh: 47 Million Food Stamp Recipients Are Having Their Benefits Cut Back On November 1st
30 years ago I began to try to have on hand 1 years worth of everything my family used on a regular basis. This was not because of political upheaval but a marital situation in which there was over decades repeated sudden unemoyment and neglect of family until he finally left. I worked and we had health care stability and in the times when my husband did work I bought a years worth of what was on sale little by little and kept stocked as single parent and now my married neighbors borrow the cup of sugar or rice from me! Although my trust is ultimately in His protection and provision the strategy he gave me for peace and stability for my sons and It continues today and continues to expand.
Learned along time ago to have a “pantry” … because I lived in the country and couldn’t be running back and forth to town at every whim. As for the rest on your list…mostly ok. One can’t every really “measure up” can we?
Exc post Harriet- and Rourke- Mostly prepared but need to tweak a few things and get the credit card paid off completely. It will be very tough when the crap hits the fan but we must all remember that we have one another in prayer and that the Lord will guide us.Arlene
Being financially prepared is continuous. One can always find more things to include in one’s list. However it is important that you can live by your values or to change one’s values if they are found to be out of kilter with reality. It is nice to know you have money put aside for dealing with negative events. It is also good to separate known expenses from emergencies. I know that one day I will have to replace my refrigerator so I need to budget for that and other electrical items that need to be replaced or upgraded. However I shouldn’t raid the emergency money to pay for it. It isn’t unexpected.
Arlene, our God will always guide us, however like Noah we have to learn to listen and see the signs along the way. If we don’t listen and prepare we will have to live with the consequences and consequences can be very unpleasant. I’ve been through a major economic collapse and it isn’t pretty.
@ Harriet: Good morning, Dear Lady!
I remember a post you did this year talking briefly about the endurance of your family members. Do you have other posts here I need to look for? The U.S. is about to go through a major economic collapse – it is so close, you can feel it. I don’t think this truth is a secret anywhere in the world. It is, of course, orchestrated, but, that aside…I’m wondering what lessons we may take from your experience that may help us “survive” the coming economic collapse a little better?
Speaking of economic hardship on its way:
The “leader” (NOT MY LEADER!) of the once-free world lied to us. Imagine that!
Here’s Why So Many Americans Are Getting Letters Saying Their Health Insurance Is Canceled
“If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.” This was one of President Obama’s key talking points when selling the Affordable Care Act, and it was never true — as many of the 14 million Americans currently covered by individually-purchased health plans are now learning.
Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/heres-why-so-many-americans-are-getting-letters-saying-their-health-insurance-is-canceled-2013-10
Harriet-yes any of us who have suffered through poverty- not due to our own decisions understands the need to prepare and to live within our harvest.
I do believe though that we MUST balance the blessings of every day with our sensible prepping.It boggles my mind that some people just
do not see reality- or maybe they do not want to see reality.
I sure appreciate all of you !! Arlene
Flutterby-I pay for my own health insurance and I just received a letter stating that I can continue this plan with possibly lower costs due to the new rules or that I can change this. Time will tell.I have a lot of researching to do. Arlene
About 20-or-so-years ago, some Science Fiction writer (it may have been Jerry Pournelle or Robert Heinlein – I just don’t remember) stated a “rule” that the more altruistic and high-minded the name and wording of a piece of legislation, the more nefarious the real purpose behind it.
Thus, we end up with laws on the books like the “Health Insurance Portability and Privacy Act (HIPAA)”, the “Affordable Health Care Act (ObamaCare)”, “The Patriot Act”, “H.R. 933: Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act (Monsanto Protection)”. Thousands (if not hundreds of thousands of pages of unfathomable and often self-contradictory BS that all come down to “we can do anything we feel like,and put you in jail and YOU can’t – neener, neener, neener…”.
4 years ago, before HIPAA, my online product could email or text or call an MD or family member to say “Mary Smith needs an RX refill” or “Mom’s BP is 400/220 – say ‘call Mom’ to call now”. Now “a contact has reported results that require your attention via secure channel.” is all that is legal. I do understand the HIPAA need for security, but not every step ‘forward’ is in the right direction.
Yes Wyz…just because the step is “forward” doesn’t mean it’s the right direction. It might be an “off ramp” into who knows where! Every legislator wants “something” with his/her name on it. They thrive on their legacy, and then write books to make it even bigger…and people buy the dumb things!