Our Six-Month Getting Started Plan

Discussion in 'General Preparedness Discussion' started by s516m, Oct 21, 2010.

  1. s516m

    s516m Member

    My wife and I have accumulated a few things in the last year with the idea of being more prepared but we haven't taken a very systematic approach to it. I sat down and brainstormed some scenarios focusing first on some of the higher-probability cases and came up with a six month plan we can work towards. Here's the basics of what we're going to do. Please pick it apart/give me any input.

    1) Laminate contact information we can keep in our wallets in case we lose/break our phones and need to get hold of someone. I don't know most people's phone numbers anymore since they are in my cell phone. If there was an emergency and I didn't have my cell, I probably couldn't get hold of most of my family members. We'll make laminated cards to keep in wallets and a larger card with more info to keep in bug out bag.

    2) Improve first aid kits for home/office (I own a small company so I'm thinking a bit about that as well)

    3) Resolve storage issues for food, water, and other supplies. Where are we going to store this stuff? How are we going to keep it organized?

    4) Ensure we have a 7-day supply of food and water. We have this now but I want to go ahead and make a meal plan. My scenarios also showed we'd use a lot of water for flushing the toilet so I may try to store some gray water just for that purpose.

    5) Day pack/get-home-bag for myself/wife

    6) Car packs for myself/wife

    7) Address electricity-loss needs. Generator, fuel, extension cords, more propane for the grill, efficient propane burner for non-grill cooking, etc.

    8) Bug out bags for myself/wife. These probably won't be very security oriented, but will be helpful if we have to flee the house due to a fire or forced evacuation. We'll deal with more severe scenarios after we get through this list.

    9) Ensure we have a usable 14-day supply of food and water, or the ability to filter water after 7 days. Nearest creek/water source is about 1 mile away so we'll probably try to stockpile 14 days of water.

    10) Address additional water loss needs. I ran across a few items (containers, shallow wash basin) that might be helpful in a long-term potable water loss scenario. But this seemed like a lower priority than some of the things above so we'll spend our resources/energy on those and then tackle of additional things here.

    11) Ensure we have a usable 30-day supply of food and water or the ability to process water

    12) Address sewer loss needs. How would we keep things sanitary without sewers for a few days or a few weeks. We're not in a flood-prone area so this is low priority for us, but I came up with a few things we should have just in case of an earthquake or something that takes out our sewer service.

    13) Ensure we have a usable 90-day storage of food

    All of the food stored to this point will be stuff we use in the normal course of our meals. We prefer to use fresh chicken/meats but will stockpile some canned just in case. We can use the canned once a week to keep rotating. Same with veggies. We like fresh/local but can substitute canned once or twice a week to keep things rotating. After we have 90 days of things we currently use, we'll start looking into some longer-term food storage strategies and some things we don't currently use.

    After six months, we'll start tackling some additional scenarios and start thinking about security and whatnot. Baby steps!
  2. ZoomZoom

    ZoomZoom Rookie Prepper

    Looks good!

    A couple things I'd like to throw out.
    Besides the cards in the wallet, post a bug-out list. These are the things you'll need to do or take if you're leaving in a hurry. If you're in a hurry, you may not be thinking clearly and miss something important. On this list, you obviously say grab the bags but it may also say things like:
    Grab a case of bottled water.
    Grab any prescription meds. Glasses if you wear contacts.
    Time permitting, call-forward on phones, turn off power, adjust thermostat, turn off water... Things you may want to do based on the situation.

    As for sewers, if there's an extended electrical outage, the fuel that supplies the generators for the sewer plant pumps may quit working. Flooding may not be your issue but backed-up pipes may.

    Try to keep an inventory.

    Consider seasonal needs. If it's freezing out, how are you staying warm (inside, or if bugging out)? How to stop the pipes from freezing.

  3. s516m

    s516m Member

    Good point on the sewers. I wasn't thinking an extended electrical outage would cause issues with the sewers.

    Dumb question: Short of the drains starting to back up, any other way to be warned of sewer problems before you've got a mess on your hands? It's pretty obvious when electricity/gas/water stop working. Anything obvious we can look for?
  4. ZoomZoom

    ZoomZoom Rookie Prepper

    Can't really help you much with that one as I'm on a septic system.

    Do a forum search for sewer. I believe it's been discussed before. I do remember hearing it was a good idea to consider back-flow preventers. With those in place, if it starts backing up from their end, at least it won't come gurgling up through your toilets.
  5. dulcimerlady

    dulcimerlady Member

    If your company consists of more than 4 or 5 people, I would consider making a rather large first aid kit. You never know what needs may arise. Several years ago I was office manager of a small office with about 20 employees. I was required to put together an extensive first aid kit per headquarters, but what was put in it was up to my discretion. I ended up getting a large rubbermaid container. You know, the kind you put your Christmas decorations in. It had everything in it from latex gloves to contact lens solution and an extra contact case just in case someone had to take theirs out for some reason and didn't have a holder with them. It had lots of different over the counter medications and bandages, cold & hot packs and of course alcohol and peroxide. By the time that tote was filled, I had their first aid kit requirement taken care of. But there's no way I could have fit it all in "traditional" first aid kit.
  6. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    Regarding Item #4 on your list...flushing the toilet. Remember the adage: "if it's yellow let it mellow, if it's brown flush it down". That'll save some water.

    If it's possible or safe to be outside AND it's raining, you can set buckets, kettles, bowls, whatever you can find that'll hold water, under the drips off your house. If you have rain gutters you can collect a lot of water for things like flushing, and even for bathing, etc.

    I'm impressed with your list. It shows concise thinking covering many possibilities. Keep up the good work.
  7. Tirediron

    Tirediron RockyMountainCanadian

    For human waste a few 6 gallon buckets of coarse saw dust and one of the latrine lid kits will help keep odors down if the sewer system fails , Google saw dust toilet
  8. ZoomZoom

    ZoomZoom Rookie Prepper

    Thought of something else. When you're doing your food, consider the fridge and freezer, and what to do with the contents should there be an extended electrical outage.

    In my situation, I have a couple of the fridge/freezer combos but also have 3 very large chest freezers that are full. I do have a generator and fuel to keep them going for a decent duration but I need to have a plan should there be an expectation that I'll run out of fuel before the power comes back on, or if the situation is bad, I can't run the generator. The plan needs to address preserving what I can, as well as how to deal with the kids after they're wired on "as much ice cream as you can eat".
  9. Clarice

    Clarice Well-Known Member

    On the subject of sawdust toilet, I keep several 25# bags of scented cat litter for the stinky jobs. Sawdust then when the job is done sprinkle on the cat litter. I also have used the cat litter in the rare times we had ice storms for traction on our sidewalks, doesn't seem to eat up the concrete as salt does. Don't forget your personal hygene items.
  10. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    I've often heard people saying that if the power goes off for what is expected to be a long-term outage, they'll eat what they can out of the fridge/freezers, and can the rest.

    Okay...for those of you with that plan...how many canning jars do you have? How many new jar lids? Is it enough to can it all? What will you cook on while you can? Can you regulate the heat propertly on it? Do you have a canning book for canning times and procedures?

    Don't forget drying, at least for fruits and vegetables. You can slice them and spread them on cookie sheets and in cake pans, or even on cardboard from boxes, in a pinch. Turn them several times a day so both sides are exposed to air.

    That way you can save the canning jars for meat and dairy products, which are safer canned, unless you're making jerky!

    Anyone have a recipe for canning ice cream? :D ROTFL
  11. ZoomZoom

    ZoomZoom Rookie Prepper

    As for saving the contents of the freezers, my plan is a mix of canning, dehydrating, brining, smoking... Whatever it takes. I would prefer to avoid canning the meats because of the volume. Squeezing 400-500# of meat into cans is going to take a lot of jars...
    I probably need more canning jars. I have about 500 (quart size) and a couple thousand new lids.
  12. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    Thanks, bc, for mentioning bringing and smoking! I always forget about those!
  13. horseman09

    horseman09 Well-Known Member

    :lolsmash::lolsmash::lolsmash: Gypsie, that sounds like a hippy party. "Bringing and smoking". Yesssssssss!!!

    Just pickin' on ya, Gypsie. I think I know you well enough to know you have a good sense of humor. My fumble fingers produce more typos than flies on a cow patty. :)
  14. HarleyRider

    HarleyRider Comic Relief Member


    Sure do. :rolleyes:

    Put the ice cream in a can and keep it frozen. :eek:

    (You probably knew that was coming) :D
  15. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    I missed this the other day! Yep, I have to keep backing up and retyping what my fingers tripped over the first time! And I can't get back into that post now and change it to "brining and smoking"! So now all those hapless new preppers will be trying to figure out where to "bring and smoke" their food! :lolsmash:

    And Harley! :lolsmash: I love your directions for "canning ice cream"!

    You guys are great! You brighten my day and make me smile! :D
  16. fobhomestead

    fobhomestead Well-Known Member

    I guess it all depends on your particular scenarios and how your home is already set up.
    Water for me = well water... and I know the nearest stream and lakes and I also store flushing water ((septic system)) in the used milk carton jugs (tblspn of bleach- they have to be used for something and once I get my goats the jugs will stop "multiplying")
    Food Storage = smallest "bedroom" in the house has now become a pantry (W/I closet is shelves and shelves of storage and the room has 2 freezers and all of my prep books plus shelving for my canning equipment and my other tools). Also, I buy bulk flour/sugar/etc and have them in sealed canisters in my "pantry". Oh yeah.. no heat to the pantry so it stays cool.

    DONT FORGET TOILET PAPER!!! You will be your family's HERO if you pull out a huge "space saver" vaccuum bag of TP once the rolls are empty!

    Cooking? I have a wood cook stove. Depends on what you are set up for, but the propane and camping type of cooking supplies will work just as good (and would probably be a lot easier!). Get a good Dutch Oven. If all else fails, you can cook over a campfire.

    I have a can of seeds I keep frozen... just in case short term turns into long term. Buy the BOOKS too on how to harvest seeds and store them, basic gardening, etc... the internet may not be available.

    Can you get livestock? My basic plan is chickens and goats (and my horse). Still working on that. A garden is needed too... even if you are in an apartment, you can still grow some small things... it is the experience and learning that will get people in the end.

    If there was a need for a "bug out bag (BOB)" ... plus you are relying on your food supplies... there is a problem there :p If you have a BOB then I would think you would need to know where you are going and make sure you have what you need there. I personally couldn't figure it out (how to afford two places fully stocked) so I moved to meet my bug out location (BOL) needs. But I am :nuts: so I wouldn't put too much credence on that advice.
    I am learning about how to make a root cellar along with making an Icehouse too. Those are long term... but it doesn't hurt to get the info printed out (or find a book or keep a journal).
    Final note to add to your paperwork stash (LOVE the number idea btw)... MAPS. Topo maps of wherever your BOL is and road maps. and a compass.
  17. HozayBuck

    HozayBuck Well-Known Member

    I don't think it was a typo... I think it was a flash back !.. GS tell us about Woodstock???
  18. gypsysue

    gypsysue The wanderer

    Was it Woodstock? Or was it the Burning Man party?
  19. The_Blob

    The_Blob performing monkey

    you know what they say... "it's always prop19 somewhere" :D
  20. joe57

    joe57 New Member


    lets not forget to stock up on ammo:eek: