Tag Archives: baby steps

  • Baby Step Into Prepping

    |5 COMMENT(S)

    Baby Step Faceplant The struggle is real.

    Remember that time when you were first learning to walk, when you took your very first baby step? Those were the times when…what’s that? You don’t remember? Oh, of course not. Silly me. Let me explain what it was like. You struggled, you fought for balance, and the next thing you knew…BAM! You’re on your face.


    But that’s OK, you don’t need to feel embarrassed. I was the same way. So was every other human being that’s ever learned to walk. We start off on our hands and knees and slowly work up the strength to use our legs. But before we become proficient at it, we fall down, over and over and over. It’s a good thing little kids don’t know the meaning of the word "defeat," otherwise there would be a lot more adults crawling than walking. But crawling isn’t necessarily easier than walking, no matter what your kid-self remembers (or assumes to remember). Crawling is just the first step into a bigger world.

    Preparing for disasters is the same way. Daisy Luther from The Organic Prepper shared her story about how she went from newbie prepper to veteran status in her post entitled How to Prep When You’re NOT an Epic Wildernes Survival Guru. When she first started, she said she couldn’t even light a fire that would keep burning. She recalls a time when she first started out learning how to take care of herself from a survival standpoint. Nothing she did worked out. She lamented,


    “I broke things, froze wood to the wall of my cabin, shivered when the fire went out, freaked out when there was a bear on my porch, climbed out a window and dug my shovel out of the snow with cooking pots because I had left it outside and snow had blown against my door, burying the shovel and trapping us inside.”


    Yowzah! That doesn’t sound like a good time at all. But, as time went on, she improved. No matter how incompetent we may think we are, we can always improve.

    Big Journeys Begin With Baby StepsEverybody has to begin somewhere. Start slow. Baby steps. Do you have a flashlight? You do? Well look at you go! I bet you have some canned food in your cupboards, too. Go ahead, take a look…So, what did you find? Soup, beans, and chili, eh? Well what do you know…You’re a prepper and you didn’t even know it!

    You see, it doesn’t have to be hard. Without even trying, we’ve identified a few items you can use if an emergency happened tomorrow. But don’t stop there! Continue building your emergency supplies, little by little, every month. Buy an extra can or two of food while you’re out grocery shopping. It’ll start adding up, and you won’t even notice a huge difference in your bank account.

    It is good to remember, too, that canned food from the stores aren’t packaged to last nearly as long as our freeze-dried food, which is good for 25 years. That being said, you can still rotate through your older food by using it in your meals. Just remember to replace it if you do use it!

    No matter what your background is, or what your current living conditions or abilities, you can become strong in your emergency preparations. Preparing doesn’t have to be daunting. Just use baby steps until you’re sufficiently prepared…and then keep going! Because being prepared is a continual process.

    You can do it. I believe in you!


    How did you start off in your prepping? Was it easy? Was it worth it? Let us know in comments!


    Practice Your Prep

    Posted In: Additional Reading Tagged With: start small, prepping, baby steps

  • Baby Steps: Have to Evacuate? Take Your Info Along

    |5 COMMENT(S)

    Make sure to take your important information along if you evacuate

    Imagine this: A chemical spill and potential fire forces a sudden evacuation order in your area. You have ten minutes max to grab your kids, pets, keys, wallet, and emergency supplies and be on your way. What’s likely to get left behind?

    One item often forgotten in the rush of any crisis is information. You may need such info as immunization records (Bill cut his foot: when was his last tetanus shot?), homeowners’ insurance policy and contact numbers, or health insurance cards.

    Keeping copies of important documents and info in a form that’s handy to grab along with your emergency kit is a smart step in your preparation efforts. During any emergency, you won’t have the time or presence of mind to rush around gathering up birth certificates, documents, and important phone numbers. Why not prepare copies ahead of time and tuck them into a pocket of your kit?

    Follow these simple steps to add to your peace of mind and readiness:

    1. Make a list of documents, certificates, and papers you wouldn’t want to lose in any emergency situation. Consider the following:
      • Birth certificates
      • Marriage certificate
      • Social Security cards
      • Driver licenses
      • Life insurance policy numbers and phone information
      • Homeowners insurance policy numbers and contact information
      • Health insurance cards
      • Auto insurance cards
      • Passports
      • Up-to-date immunization records
      • Account information for all your credit cards and bills
      • Copies of prescriptions
      • Pet documentation (license and medical records)
      • Precious photographs, including a recent one of your whole family for ID purposes. Perhaps a picture with your pet(s) as well, for ID and proof of ownership.
      • Flash drives containing any computerized material you want to save—family history, creative works, correspondence, financial records, work files, etc.


    2. Make a list of phone numbers and email addresses you’d want to have with you. Don’t depend upon numbers that are programmed into your cell phone, as phones can be lost or destroyed. Don’t forget to include employers, employees, relatives, close friends, out-of-state contacts, doctors, poison control center, clergymen, and business contacts.

    4.  Make a list of all your accounts, with numbers and phone information.

    6. Gather up those documents from step 1 and make copies of them. Except for your driver license, put the originals in a safe, lockbox, or safety-deposit box at your bank. Consider making two or three copies instead of just one. You might want to leave one packet of copies with a trusted relative to keep for you. Think how grateful you’d be if (perish the thought!) your home had burned to have Grandma hand you a packet of all your most important documents and photos!  Some people also tuck a packet into their car emergency kit or somewhere else in the car in case it’s needed when they don’t have their emergency kit on hand.

      Seal your packet in a plastic bag to protect it from moisture and soil, and have only blank paper showing through the plastic to avoid advertising contents to would-be ID thieves. If you’re concerned about wrinkling or tearing, enclose a piece of stiff cardboard. Some people prefer to enclose each document in a plastic sheet protector and put them all into a binder, but while this would be perfect to hand to Grandma for safekeeping, it makes a more cumbersome package to tuck into your supplies. Your choice!

    8. Put your packets together and place them where they need to be. Take a deep breath and put your feet up. You’ve done well!

    For additional information, check out the “Emergency Financial First Aid Kit

    What other documents do you think are important to include in your information packet?


    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: emergency binder, emergency preparedness, evacuation plan, Emergency plan, baby steps

  • Baby Steps: DIY Felted Wool Dryer Balls

    |4 COMMENT(S)

    Looking for a unique DIY present? Why not give the gift of soft, sweet-smelling laundry all year long . . . (and no, we unfortunately don’t sell a laundry-scented 100-hour candle . . .)

    Last summer, we wrote a post about how to make DIY Laundry Detergent, so we decided that we needed to make something for your dryer, too. DIY Felted Wool Dryer Balls are a great present to give to your family, friends, and neighbors. I think they’re meaningful gifts and something that is useful to everyone.

    DIY Felted Wool Dryer Balls

    The benefits of DIY Felted Wool Dryer Balls

    • They reduce your drying time
    • They are free of chemicals often found in store bought dryer sheets
    • They reduce allergic reactions because they don’t include fragrances or chemicals
    • They fluff your laundry and reduce static cling
    • They are inexpensive to make (It only cost me $5.49 for the yarn. I already had the other supplies around my house)

    What You’ll Need

    • 100% Wool Yarn (not labeled ‘superwash’ or ‘machine washable’)—I found my wool yarn at Hobby Lobby. The brand was called “I Love this Wool.” Check your local craft store’s website for 100% wool yarn before making a trip there.
    • Scissors
    • A pair of old pantyhose
    • A blunt-tipped needle or crochet hook (a pen cap or tooth pick would work as well)
    • A little string or acrylic yarn (optional)
    • Essential Oil (optional)

    How You Make it

    1. Wrap a strand of wool yarn around the index and middle fingers of your non-dominant hand about 20 times. Pinch the wrapped yarn in the middle and pull it off your fingers. Wrap 4 or 5 loops of yarn around the center of this bundle to hold it securely. Using the bundle as the center of your ball, continue wrapping yarn around it in different directions, turning to achieve a fairly-tight ball shape. Continue until the ball is at least the size of a tennis ball.
    2. Use a blunt-tipped needle or crochet hook to tuck the end of your yarn under several layers of wrapped yarn until you can no longer see the end. Repeat the process described in steps 1 and 2 until you have 5 or 6 balls.
    3. Cut one leg off of an old pair of pantyhose (or use a knee -high stocking). Put one ball into the toe of the stocking, followed by the other dryer balls. Use the little string or acrylic yarn to section off each ball from one another (or just put one ball in the stocking at a time and tied a knot between them with the pantyhose). Tie off the open end of the stocking so that you have a “yarn-ball caterpillar.” Make sure you tie them tight! You don’t want them coming out in the washing machine.
    4. Throw the “yarn-ball caterpillar” into the washing machine with a load of whites or towels in hot water to begin the felting process. Then throw the caterpillar into the dryer.  You will want to wash and dry the caterpillar at least 2-4 times so that the yarn will felt and won’t come apart.
    5. Remove the dryer balls from the stocking. Then toss the balls into your dryer with a load of wet laundry. If you’d like, you can add 2-3 drops of your favorite essential oil to the balls to scent your laundry as they work.

    How do they work?

    For each load of laundry, the dryer balls will bounce around in the machine, separating your clothes, and allowing more hot air to circulate through the clothes. This excess air will allow your clothes to dry faster and the tumbling dryer balls will help to make the laundry soft and decrease wrinkles as they hit the clothes.

    How long will they last?

    This is the biggest question I had while making my own dryer balls: How long will they last? I scoured the internet for an answer to this question. The common consensus seemed to be 5 to 8+ years—they’ll last you for quite some time. However, if you use Essential oils, you’ll need to re-apply them regularly to the dryer balls to infuse that scent into your laundry.

    Wrap Em’ Up!

    These DIY Felted Wool Dryer Balls would be an excellent present because they are the gift that keeps on giving throughout the year (and beyond!)

    Place your wool Balls into a small wrapped basket or box and include a batch of our Emergency Essentials DIY Laundry Detergent to make a complete present. You can even leave a little note explaining how to use the dryer balls and what their purpose and benefits are.


    P.S. Speaking of laundry . . . top off your present with a Mobile Washer (hand operated washing machine). The Mobile Washer is perfect for washing clothes during a power outage or on a camping trip. All you need is a bucket, a little bit of your DIY Laundry Detergent, and a little bit of muscle to get your clothes clean. Check out how the Mobile Washer works in the video below.






    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: DIY, baby steps, gifts, skills

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