Emergency Items: What Will Disappear First

Do you ever wonder if a major emergency situation occurred what would disappear first?  Due to the overwhelming nature of prepping for a emergency situation, many do not know where to even begin, let alone think of emergency situations they would need to prepare for.  Having a ready supply of food, water and batteries are a good start, but not enough.  There are many more items to have on hand besides beans, band aids and bullets.

When planning for an emergency, especially a sudden and long-term emergency, think about the worst situation imaginable.  For those that need some help – think of mass chaos of people running into grocery stores to get as much food and supplies as possible, gas lines that run out into the street, highways at a virtual stand still, banks not giving out money, looting, fires, the health of the elderly deteriorating due to not being able to get needed medicines, babies crying because that have no formula to drink.  It’s not a pretty picture when you allow yourself to imagine it.  Having supplies on hand can put a person way ahead of the game.  While many who are unprepared for such a grim reality will be battling the lines at the grocery stores, those that have prepared accordingly could be packing their items up and headed for hills before many have even attempted to.

This author came across some advice from someone who has experienced a long term emergency first hand.  This advice could help a person prepare not only for their well being, but also mentally prepare them for getting through the nightmare of a long term emergency.

Advice From a Sarajevo War Survivor:

Experiencing horrible things that can happen in a war – death of parents and friends, hunger and malnutrition, endless freezing cold, fear, sniper attacks.

1. Stockpiling helps. But you never no how long trouble will last, so locate near renewable food sources.
2. Living near a well with a manual pump is like being in Eden.
3. After awhile, even gold can lose its luster.  But there is no luxury in war quite like toilet paper.  Its surplus value is greater than gold’s.
4. If you had to go without one utility, lose electricity – it’s the easiest to do without (unless you’re in a very nice climate with no need for heat.)
5. Canned foods are awesome, especially if their contents are tasty without heating.  One of the best things to stockpile is canned gravy – it makes a lot of the dry unappetizing things you find to eat in war somewhat edible.  Only needs enough heat to “warm”, not to cook. It’s cheap too, especially if you buy it in bulk.
6. Bring some books – escapist ones like romance or mysteries become more valuable as the war continues.  Sure, it’s great to have a lot of survival guides, but you’ll figure most of that out on your own anyway – trust me, you’ll have a lot of time on your hands.
7. The feeling that you’re human can fade pretty fast.  I can’t tell you how many people I knew who would have traded a much needed meal for just a little bit of toothpaste, rouge, soap or cologne.  Not much point in fighting if you have to lose your humanity.  These things are morale-builders like nothing else.
8. Slow burning candles and matches, matches, matches

Emergency Items That Disappear First

1. Generators (Good ones cost dearly. Gas storage, risky. Noisy…target of
thieves; maintenance etc.)
2. Water
3. Water filters and purifiers
4. Portable toilets
5. Seasoned firewood. Wood takes about 6 – 12 months to become dried, for home use.
6. Lamp oil, wicks, and lamps (First choice: Buy CLEAR oil. If scarce, stockpile
7. Coleman fuel (Impossible to stockpile too much)
8. Guns, ammunition, pepper spray, knives, clubs, bats or slingshots
9. Hand-can openers, hand egg beaters, whisks
10. Honey, syrups, white and brown sugar
11. Rice – beans – wheat
12. Vegetable oil (for cooking) Without it food burns/must be boiled etc.,)
13. Charcoal, lighter fluid (will become scarce suddenly)
14. Water Containers of any size. Small: HARD CLEAR PLASTIC ONLY – note – food grade if for drinking.
15. Propane cylinders (Urgent: definite shortages will occur)
16. Survival Guide book
17. Mantles: Aladdin, Coleman, etc. (without this item, longer-term lighting is
18. Baby supplies: diapers, formula, ointments, aspirin, etc.
19. Washboards, mop bucket with wringer (for laundry)
20. Cook stoves (propane, Coleman and kerosene)
21. Vitamins
22. Propane cylinder handle-holder (urgent: Small canister use is dangerous
without this item)
23. Feminine hygiene, hair care, skin products
24. Thermal underwear (tops and bottoms)
25. Bow saws, axes and hatchets, wedges (also, honing oil)
26. Aluminum foil regular and heavy duty (great for cooking and bartering item)
27. Gasoline containers (plastic and metal)
28. Garbage bags (impossible to have too many)
29. Toilet paper, Kleenex, paper towels
30. Milk – powdered, condensed (Shake Liquid every 3 to 4 months)
31. Garden seeds (Non-Hybrid) (A MUST)
32. Clothes pins, line, hangers (A MUST)
33. Coleman’s pump repair kit
34. Tuna fish (in oil)
35. Fire extinguishers (or large box of baking soda in every room)
36. First aid kits
37. Batteries (all sizes…buy furthest-out for expiration dates)
38. Garlic, spices, vinegar, baking supplies
39. Dog food
40. Flour, yeast, salt
41. Matches (“Strike Anywhere” preferred) Boxed, wooden matches will go first
42. Writing paper, pads, pencils, solar calculators
43. Insulated ice chests (good for keeping items from freezing in wintertime.)
44. Work boots, belts, blue jeans, durable shirts
45. Flashlights, light sticks, torches, “No. 76 Dietz” lanterns
46. Journals, diaries, scrapbooks (jot down ideas, feelings, experience;
historic times)
47. Plastic garbage cans (great for storage, water, transporting – if with
48. Men’s Hygiene: shampoo, toothbrush, paste, mouthwash, floss, nail clippers, etc.
49. Cast iron cookware (sturdy, efficient)
50. Fishing supplies, tools
51. Mosquito coils, repellent, sprays, creams
52. Duct tape
53. Tarps, stakes, twine, nails, rope, spikes
54. Candles
55. Laundry detergent (liquid)
56. Backpacks, duffel bags
57. Garden tools, supplies
58. Scissors, fabrics, sewing supplies
59. Canned goods: fruits, veggies, soups, stews, etc.
60. Bleach (plain, not scented: 4 to 6% sodium hypochlorite)
61. Canning supplies
62. Knives, sharpening tools: files, stones, steel
63. Bicycles and parts: tires, tubes, pumps, chains, etc.
64. Sleeping bags, blankets, pillows, mats
65. Carbon monoxide alarm (battery powered)
66. Board games, cards, dice
67. d-con Rat poison, MOUSE PRUFE II, roach killer
68. Mousetraps, ant traps, cockroach magnets
69. Paper plates/cups/utensils (stock up, folks)
70. Baby wipes, oils, waterless, antibacterial soap (saves a lot of water)
71. Rain gear, rubberized boots, etc.
72. Shaving supplies (razors, creams, talc, after shave)
73. Hand pumps & siphons (for water and for fuels)
74. Soy sauce, vinegar, bullions, gravy, soup base
75. Reading glasses
76. Chocolate, cocoa, tang, punch (water enhancers)
77. “Survival-in-a-Can”
78. Woolen clothing, scarves, ear-muffs, mittens
79. Boy Scout handbook, and/or Leaders catalog
80. Roll-on window insulation kit (MANCO)
81. Graham crackers, saltines, pretzels, trail mix, jerky
82. Popcorn, peanut butter, nuts
83. Socks, underwear, t-shirts, etc. (extras)
84. Lumber (all types)
85. Wagons, carts (for transport to and from)
86. Cots, inflatable mattresses
87. Gloves for work, warming, gardening, etc.
88. Lantern hangers
89. Screen patches, glue,
90. Hardware – nails, screws, nuts and bolts
91. Teas
92. Coffee
93. Cigarettes
94. Wine, liquors (for bribes, medicinal, etc.)
95. Paraffin wax
96. Glue, nails, nuts, bolts, screws, etc.
97. Chewing gum, candies
98. Atomizers (for cooling, bathing)
99. Hats, cotton neckerchiefs, seasonal clothing needs
100. Livestock – goats, chickens, etc.


The Prepper's Blueprint

Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.

Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals. 

Visit her web site at ReadyNutrition.com for an extensive compilation of free information on preparedness, homesteading, and healthy living.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published November 11th, 2009
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40 Responses to Emergency Items: What Will Disappear First

  1. Gavin says:

    Good site , i’ve already stockpiled a tent , combat sleeping bags , utensils , water purifier and tablets , hexamine , army rucksacks and all weather gear. We have a 200 acre forest near our house and when the warning signs begin i will be making food caches.
    I have vitamins , batteries and large supplies of water and pasta so far as well. 2 crossbows for hunting and otherwise.
    i am building my stockpile every month…i think it is inevitable and i want to give my family every chance to survive…it’s no use depending on the govt…they will save theirselves.,..
    Think people…

    • wandakate says:

      Smart-very smart. Best way to get what you need slowly, little by little. If people would think for themselves it would be better but they don’t cause most are just too lazy. Or, they want a handout. I think we’re in all this for quite sometime once it gets really bad. Prepare for the worse and pray for the best, but no doubt you’re always better safe than sorry. My problem is the room to store stuff, I live in a small place with little space.

  2. Tess says:

    Wow Gavin!  It sounds like you are taking preparedness seriously.  And it’s a good thing.  You can never prepare enough in my opinion.
    Caches are a great way to store supplies away for an emergency situation.  In the book, The Patriots, a character in the book stashed away an extra pair of boots in a cache, not really thinking he would need them.  It turned out that the boots were the most important item he needed besides food. 

    Building your preparedness supply every month is a fantastic point that the readers should know about.  If a person is able to continuously prepare, then their supply will not only increase, but having these supplies creates a sense of security.  Personally speaking, you can never have too many preparedness supplies.  Everyone can always use another survival item. 

    In the grand scheme of things, preparedness is a state of mind.  Through prepping, we become more self reliant on ourselves and not on others. 

    Gavin, thanks for sharing how you are preparing.  It will give readers a good idea of what to have for a long term disaster.

    Ready Nutrition

  3. Andi Murfy says:

    I really loved reading your blog. It was very well authored and easy to understand. Unlike additional blogs I have read which are really not that good. I also found your posts very interesting. In fact after reading, I had to go show it to my friend and he enjoyed it as well!
    <a href=”http://www.iprepare.com/”>emergency supplies</a>

  4. Shreela says:

    I guess it’s all relative to where one lives, as well as how long the disaster might go on. Since I live on the Gulf Coast, I see propane, kerosene, LP, bottled water, tuna/spam, powdered milk pretty much fly off the shelves every time we’re in a 3 day cone.

    But I only recently discovered a few new things to add to our list: prescription drugs (we’d never been on them for previous storm preps), pet formula (yes! I had some field cats give birth, tried buying formula just in case, but was told that local pet caring centers – can’t remember what they’re called – clear them out every storm!).

    We learned the hard way how long pharmacy lines are when a known-disaster is headed our way. But I was relieved we even got DH’s BP meds before Ike, since he only had a week’s worth left. We tried doing the 3 months prescription thing, but now he’s on a med for something else, and stupid insurance wouldn’t allow 3 months prescriptions. We have a different insurance now, thanks to you for making me think of this, I’m contacting them soon to see what can be done.

    Oh, and how many know how to make coffee without power or gas? Maybe it’s just my neck of the woods, but when we were raking the street drains, we met our newest neighbors, asked them if they wanted coffee, and all theirs and our other neighbors heads all turned at once when they heard me ask. I ended up making 3 pots in a row to get everyone served LOL (we bought a bigger camp coffee pot later on haha). The other neighbors SIL mowed our grass to chop up small debris, without us even asking, awwww coffee makes friends ^_^

  5. Ben says:

    I really enjoyed reading this and that’s a very good idea to build littl by little everymonth. A lot of a little is alot, I wish I could but unfortunately I dnt have enough space in my barracks room lol (yes in military) I think one very impportant thing to consider is this, when shit hits the fan people who are not prepared WILL turn into a pack of wolves. They WILL group up and prey upon the “weak” I gaurantee it there’s already gangs everywhere where do u think they will go once food cnt be found? into your home into my home into anyones stuff they think they can find something. thy won’t care who they hurt, it will be there most basic instinct coming out…survive…. home defence will be crucial, although probably the most expensive. Haha oh yeah and the whole toilet paper thing…. last year went 60 days without a real toilet or real toiletpaper, stupid afghanaland, and yeah not something u think bout now but when u dnt have it….. Well it just miserable

  6. Debra says:

    pTP = prepare to protectDKL

  7. Jan Steinman says:

    For an alternative view of collapse, check out the work of Dmitry Orlov and his book, “Reinventing Collapse.” He lived through the collapse of the Former Soviet Union.

    Most people see collapse as a switch: it’s either “business as usual,” or “Mad Max.” However, Orlov describes five levels of collapse. It is only Level 5 that people on this blog are preparing for! It could take quite some time to reach that level, and one should be preparing for intermediate levels of collapse.

    For example, 45% of food in Russia comes from 7% of agricultural land, from “dacha gardens” that individuals grow. Russia could not feed itself without that! And yet, I see an emphasis on stockpiling, rather than producing. If you are stockpiling, you are part of the problem, not part of the solution!

    Number one: start producing your own food and energy. It is not simple to do; you need to learn it. In all but an Orlov-Level-5 collapse, you’ll probably not be interfered with in food production, particularly if you have an excess to barter with neighbours. Because it is not simple to do, “roaming hoards” are an over-rated fear.

    • dan says:

      It takes a year or two to get crops growing well. In that time you will need stored food to survive, barter and share. Good neighbors who share will stick together.

    • dan says:

      I wish to also note. When the world economy blinked 4 years ago. I had to live off stored food to feed me and the babies. I am working and saving again. It is amazing how much food a person needs. 

  8. Tom Dawley says:

    There is nothing better than being prepared for any situation..gives me a great feeling knowing that no matter what happens to some degree I am ready.  I even have my neighbor working with me..the basics..food..water..clothing and a roof.  Then we worked on storing propane and fuels..then garden tools and seeds.  Its just a nice feeling and hopefully my kids will find it and think I was crazy..that’s OK …

  9. Ranger Dan says:

    Gavin wrote “We have a 200 acre forest near our house and when the warning signs begin i will be making food caches.”

    In reality the 200 acre forest will be over ran within days by “instant survivalist” of the Golden Horde all setting up camp in that forest and all thinking that they are going to live off the land …. While perhaps no one visits your 200 acre “retreat” during the good times – i can guarantee that 1000’s of folks have the same idea that you do and when you finally get to your cache – you may find that someone is already setting up camp at that location – or has stumbled across it already. 

    If you can’t put a fence around it – or call it yours and protect it with armed resources — then your just hoping that someone else doesn’t find it first.  

    • wandakate says:

      In these desperate times that we can foresee here it’s going to be extremely difficult to keep anything outside unless it’s under lock, stock, and barrel. No bar b q grills will be safe, nothing that’s not solidly locked will be either, and don’t forget a lock can actually be broken when shot. Anything not protected will be stolen, no doubt. If somebody comes across you cache they are going to consider it your loss. It will be finders keepers, end of conversation…

  10. timothy price says:

    Thanks for the list. I have all the stuff now, but am unable to locate a backpack that it will all fit into that my wife finds comfortable enough to carry long distances. Any suggestins?  (you always come through:-)

    • Hi Timothy,

      A reliable pack is crucial in a bug out situation. Because of the supplies you will be carrying, you want a pack that has a solid frame to support you and the contents inside, but is still lightweight. I bought a solid pack at http://www.BassProShops.com, but had buyer’s remorse afterward because the pack itself is 6 lbs. I am keeping it as a back up but plan on getting an ultra light pack in order to keep the weight down. Check out the ultra light packs at http://www.REI.com. This outdoor store is more expensive, but all of there products are good and high quality. Here is a link to a women’s ultralight backpack:


      If anything, you can contact this store and tell them what you are looking for and they will be more than willing to help you find the best pack for her.

      Hope this helps.


      • Kayaker says:

        I just want to recommend “Gregory Backpacks”.  Their packs come in various sizes.  I have been living abroad for over 15 years and I’ve had to move around quite a bit, mostly in Asia.  There is a debate about pack sizes, large volume versus small volume.  For me, large volume is the choice because you can always sinch up a big pack so as to decrease it’s volume.  But, that isn’t possible with small packs.  You can’t make them big.  Not really.  I have a mountain smith 75 liter that I’ve been using for the past 8 years.  I recently finished doing the Annapurna trek where I saw Europeans using Gregory packs.  I was impressed.  They make really big ones and the one I will next purchase will be a a 105 liter Gregory, called the Whitney.  What is really nice about Gregory packs is that they are super, super comfortable, they have various means by which to open them.  Finally, I want to mention that, in addition to finding a big pack, one with zipper openings and one which is comfortable, Gregory packs are also very durable and beautiful to the eye.  In closing, I want to add that in a real life crisis situation, you don’t want to have gear that breaks, or which cannot handle the stresses that you might want to put it through.  Confidence matters.  Do you think your gear will last say 5 years of life on the road?  Think about it.  Next, you don’t want to be backpacking with a pack that causes physical pain to your body.  Reducing all sources of and potential sources of physical discomfort will allow for greater of ease in a potential situation in which it is no longer easily poissible to transport oneself via cars.  Try to open your mind to all of the potential dangers and equip yourself as best as possible.  

        Good luck everybody.  

      • wandakate says:

        So you bug-out…How long will what you’re carrying last you? A few days, a week maybe, then what? If you’re out in the woods and you run out of your supplies that you lugged out there, then what will you do then?
        Bugging in seems more reasonable to me where you would have your supplies on an ongoing basis and they would certainly last you a whole lot longer than anything you were only able to carry along in backpacks. Just some food for though…
        Bugging out into the unknown woods seems foolish to me.

    • wandakate says:

      Maybe one back pack for her back and one to carry (just a thought).

  11. Jack says:

    I came to your site to double check my lists; never can be too careful you know.  Great articles, tips and other resources!
    Here is what I find lacking in most people’s preparedness plans: knowledge and attitude.  Being prepared with food and supplies is fantastic, but can you handle the harsh realities, fears, depression, isolation, and all of the other mind games you will have to endure?
    Fear, and irrational thinking and actions, will kill more people than lack of food.  A prepared mind can be the most important tool you can ever own.
    The reality that I prepare for is widespread Islamic terror attacks within our borders.  America is not prepared for the day the A-team of terror is unleashed; the unthinkable tactics that Hezbollah will use to cripple our nation will impact our citizens in a way that few can imagine.
    Make sure you prepare as advised on this great site, but put a little time into preparing your mind and soul also.

    • Hi Jack,

      I whole heartedly agree with you. To set a solid foundation, we need to be mentally and spiritually prepared before we really get into the hard core preps. Thanks for you comment.



    • wandakate says:

      I would think that it’s going to be a combination of spiritual preparedness, physical preparedness as well as mental preparedness…People will need a Bible if they are believers, they will need magazines, books to read, puzzles, games etc. things that will occupy their minds when there is no technology anymore, thus no internet and no tv. When there is no power, life will certainly change. When the poop hits the fan nothing will be the same, our routines will go down the drain. We will have to invent a new normal.

  12. chris says:

    Hi, can you give any advice if you are unable to get put of dodge? My husband is ill and I have stocked piled his meads as much as I can and lots of food about 2 years worth and we have a deep well and a shallow well I can pump out by hand and yes, I have guns and plenty of ammo and know how to use them and will. But we are out in the open on farm land. And since we have know one to help or group with. I need some advice.

    • Hi Chris,

      I see your dilemma. If you are determined to bug in, I would start working our your security preparedness and start looking into finding ways to protect the perimeter with your land. Investing in tall shrubs or trees may be helpful in concealing your home. Depending on the area you live in, I have also heard great things about bamboo. They are very prolific, extremely strong and are multipurpose. You could plant a wall of bamboo to help detract unwanted visitors. Further, you may want to consider starting a survival group to help you protect what is yours.

      If the worst were to happen you can be assured that organized bands of looters will be ready to take everything you have, including your life. They’ll be heavily armed, well versed in their tactics, fully committed to the mission at hand, and they won’t be taking prisoners.

      These looters will be looking for a prepared household to steal supplies. Some things they may look for are a running generator, a visible garden, or even a flicker of light in the middle of the night may be simple mistakes that can have significant repercussions for you and your family. Ensure that you find ways to camouflage these.

      Here are some items to consider:

      Black out curtains
      Reinforced locks
      Shatterproof glass
      Barbed wires
      Walkie talkies
      Mechanical warning devices
      Guard dogs

      Here is an article about securing your home with multiple security layers: http://readynutrition.com/resources/home-invasion-preventitive-security-layers-to-protect-the-home_30062010/

      And, if you are interested in keeping your garden out of sight, you can read this article: http://readynutrition.com/resources/survival-food-series-secret-survival-garden_10092010/

      Also, if you are over run, you want to consider having two evacuation routes with a cache of food and supplies at your designated evac spot.

      These are a few thoughts and I hope they help get you on the right track.

      Best of luck,


    • lee says:

      Hi chris,  I’m in a situation like you are.  I have made many divices to put around my perimiter that will stop any intruders.  Unfortunantly many are not leagle to use now.  I would be happy to explain and diagram many of them but I dont know how best todo that.  I dont want that info getting into the wrong hands.

      • wandakate says:

        Very smart, because everybody can read this even the bad guys who are planning to take what other people have…have to be careful what you say or print this day and age. There’s no privacy anymore.

    • wandakate says:

      Prayer changes things, and I hope your husband won’t be ill when things get really bad. Good that you stocked piled things and any medicines that you both might need etc. Also super that you have your guns and know how to shoot it if you need to. What about a big do?, they will usually bark when they hear people around and their hearing is a lot more keen than ours is. If you don’t have any neighbors, you might consider a prepper group so you will have people around. If you have open farm land sounds like you have room to put people out there. Just a thought…

  13. chris says:

    Thank you for all your advice. You have some really great ideas. At this time I still do not have a plan B. But I’m looking into everything I can. One thing that I’am is heavily armed myself, and will at least take some out with me and I wont go down without a darn good battle.
     I live in Oregon and anything will grow. I have hidden some food and other stuff away from the house, but where I live everybody will be heading for Mt.Hood and I live by the only darn town to get there. So all the roads and back roads will be blocked with others trying to get away.
     I will go to the web sites you gave me. And get going on plan B and C.
     Thank you again.

  14. Bonnie says:

    Tess, this is a really great list. I’m going to print it out today and post it inside my cupboard.

    One question:  What is “Survival in a Can”?

    Thanks for all your work,

  15. mar says:

    Being prepared is good, but also it is good to monitor situation (quakes, diseases, food shortages etc)
    This site will display some of it. Under the map you’ll find tabs with other information. Some of it is accessible without registration some you have to register. I found disease outbreak map interesting. Why? Have you heard of a man contracting plague? That happened in Oregon. He got bit by a stray cat that had a disease. Question is where did cat get it. Month or two prior, squirrel in CA campsite was found positive for plague and health officials said there is nothing to worry about….
    From all the monitoring in the world the USA has plague, not some third world country….

  16. Wazz says:

    If you have a chance to get out of the big cities, do that!
    If you own a flat in a major city, chances are that if you sell that little death-trap, you´ll get enough money to buy a fairly large house in the country, close to a major city, but far enough to be safe from scavagers leaving cities to look for supplies.
    Stockpiling is good, but remember to not just get a fair size supply, but use it!
    A food supply is not something you get and then forget about, having it there in case there is an emergency, you should treat your supply as a buffert zone rather than a last resort.
    Having plenty of rice, pasta (noodles, macaroni, spaghetti etc.), flour, all kinds of dry and canned foods at home and in different stashing areas you need to circulate this supply. Stop eating out, make sure to make your own food on a daily bases, thus circulating your supply, you eat the foods that will go bad earlier first, and then buy fresh to fill the gap.
    If you move out of the city, look for a house that is as old as possible (me and my family live in a house wich is over 200 years old), this way it was built before there was electricity and even gasoline!
    This means that the house was built to be heated by firewood and there is probably a well too, even if not in use – an old house is never built far from a source of clean water.
    We have a well even though we also have indoor plumbing, we have fireplaces or woodstoves  in every room of our house, and I use them regularly even though we also have other heatsources, we always have plenty of firewood ready.
    Even now, though everything is o.k. we have a bathing routine, we have a woodheated sauna (the stove has a built in watertray, so we get hot water while heating the sauna), wich we use 2-3 times/ week, we rarely use the indoor shower.
    We have several 200 gallon barrels for rainwater, this water is for washing, and we use this water in the sauna all the time, remember again – circulate, and keep fresh!
    We also have a 300 gallon gasoline supply, wich we circulate and keep fresh, 4 cars, 2 gasoline-powered, 2 diesel (always gassed up even if not in use – all the cars are in working order, though the ones not in regular use are ugly and beat-up), all kinds of hand-tools both for repairing, fixing and working the land, but in adition also powertools, gasolive-engine chainsaws, gasoline-engine tools for working the land etc.
    We have 2 freezers, always filled to the brim with meats, fish, butter, milk-products, berries, vegetables, ice-cream etc, and again, this can´t be said too often – circulate!
    We have a small generator that will power the freezers and other essential equipment during a black-out, and an even smaller back-up generator in storage (just in case).
    If you make survivalism your lifestyle, and you bring up your kids the same way, without making a fuzz about it, don´t preach – just bring them up this way, then it becomes natural and a possible disaster won´t rock your boat all that much, it´s not just about being prepared, it´s also about living close to nature.
    We are a lower-income couple, so we are used to think about how we use our money, and all the stuff we own have accumulated over a period of several years, some of it came with the house we bought.
    In short – circulate and keep your supplies fresh, get out of the cities if you can, and above all, keep your spirits up, no matter what – make small personal “sacrificies” all the time, try to purify your life, leave out all kinds of crap that just isn´t good for you anyway, this is the way to “survive” (perhaps even thrive) if disaster strikes.

  17. Wazz says:

    continued from previous comment…
    We also have 3 fairly large dogs, they are good for many purposes, of course they eat a lot, but they are quite happy eating dogfood, wich is cheap, and will keep for a long time – a 50 pound bag only costs a little over 10 dollars, and it´s easy to store (we store the dogfood in an outhouse), you just have to make sure you keep it dry, and if possible contained in such a way that the smell won´t attrackt rodents, you can probably find discarded freezers for free, they are great to store things in, and whatever you store is rodent-safe.
    We keep 10x 50 pound bags on hand at all times.
    The dogs are good for:
    1. the most important thing: Protection of you and your family, teach your dog(s) to be obediant to you, and to not attack anyone you invite, but to be aggressive to all strangers.
    2. Hunting, some breeds are naturally inclined to help you hunt, while some must be taught.
    3. Warmth, you can keep warmer in the wintertime if you share your sleepingspace with a dog or 2.
    4. I am sorry to add this, but if we talk serious harmageddon-type conditions, fresh meat – but this is only a worst case scenario.
    A good dog, or several are worth their wieght in gold, you can even do a little good by getting the dog from a dog pound, and remember – a mixed breed dog is usually a better choice, they are usually smarter and healthier than any dog of any certain breed, getting a puppy lets you control how it´s brought up, but though the saying goes “you can´t teach an old dog new tricks”, that is totally bogus, you can teach any dog anything (within it´s ability), and if you get an adult, you do a good deed, you got a strong companion from the get-go, and you don´t have to deal with the house-breaking issues.
    Hunting and fishing equipment is also very essential, if you can´t or don´t want to get guns, or even a crossbow, at least make sure you know how to build a hunting bow, it is actually not as difficult as it sounds.
    Building a spear is also easy, you only need a rod, a good kitchen knife and some duct tape, good both for hunting and self-defence.

    • hillbilly says:

      Wazz I strongly suggest that you actually try to make a spear as you described and try to kill a rabbit or squirrel with it NOW instead of waiting until you and your family are starving just to make sure you can actually kill the food that you will need. Obviously you have never done anything like this before, I’m not trying to belittle you, but you need to do it now instead of waiting until you are starving. Do it for your family now so that you can do it if the time comes when you have too. PLEASE !

  18. Wazz says:

    Heh – I just can´t stop writing, can I?
    I just went back and saw the post about soap etc.
    You can have a bottle or two of sodium hydroxide (lye – commonly used as a drain cleaner) somewhere in the house, you can mix this with for instance coconut oil and vegetable oils to make your own soap, there are also different kinds of fragrances you can mix in to scent it.
    Don´t worry about this though, when everything else is gone from the supermarkets, you´ll probably still be able to find sodium hydroxide, scents etc.

  19. Joseph Stearns says:

    What about get to know your neighbors? Even if they aren’t survivalists would it make it less likely that they will eat your cat or break into your home if you are more than just someone they see coming and going every now and then?

  20. Ed says:

    Wow, what a great site! Thanks for getting me back into the swing of things. One question on your list of top 100 things that go first. Propane canisters. Full or empty? I have many but they are out dated and can’t be refilled. I could swap the handles out and get them filled but I just wonder what you mean by “propane canister”. I know full would be perfered but everything costs money.

  21. William says:

    An old Russian saying: “10 friends are worth more than 10, 000 rubles.”  Close cooperation between family, friends and neighbors is essential during any crisis. Community means everything – you will be overwhelmed and an easy target if you try to handle a disaster scenario by yourself.

    • wandakate says:

      Yes, power is in numbers. Not knowing the neighbors and trying to go it alone isn’t going to be “smart” not in the least. If you smile now and are kind to them now and help them now or offer to pick up something for them at the store now, chances are when you need something they will be there to give you a hand. Just throwing up an arm now and then probably won’t be enough. Get to know the neighbors before it’s too late. You may need to barter things when the shtf.

  22. Brenda Jordan says:

    Beans,Band aides and bullets LOL brilliantly written bit of common sense thinking,thank you.Your blog is very wonderful the information provided a blessing to many…many blessings to you in return

  23. Heidi says:

    We heat with wood.  We can and have lived without power, I cook on a cookstove.  Currently we have been putting away, canning supplies, seeds(I save seeds each harvest) and dried foods.  After reading this I am going to put some propane away for cooking in summer and stash some boots.
    We have our camping supplies in a large tote, if we need to leave our home.  Hopefully living in Maine we will be okay. 
    At this point we never allow the cars to have less than 1/2 a tank of gas.  Scary times.

    • wandakate says:

      Maine is a beautiful state but it’s very cold. Believe it or not it’s actually getting colder and not warmer therefore Maine will be a very difficult place to survive for weeks on end without electricity. In a SHTF situation there won’t be any power and unless you have cords and cords of wood saved up good luck. How long have you lived without power? Weeks, months, that’s what I’m talking about here, long term. If you’re way up there then you’re probably really used to the cold bitter winters that they are capable of experiencing, so just remember that the keeping warm issue would be at the top of most people list, so get lots of wood now and keep getting it cause you will need it.

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