Tag Archives: baby steps

  • Baby Steps: Plan a Food Storage Menu and Pick up a New Skill

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    Baby Step 1: Plan a Food Storage Menu

    Not sure what foods to buy and store for your food storage supply? Here’s a helpful hint: if you don’t know what to store, try making a weekly or monthly food storage menu that includes your favorite family meals.

    According to Leslie Probert, author of Food Storage in a Nutshell, if you plan a month’s worth of meals and then multiply it by 12, you’ll know exactly what you’ll need to buy to sustain your family for a year on food storage. So here are 4 baby steps on how to get started on your food storage menu.

    Make a list of your favorite meals: Look at the recipes and ingredients for each of these meals and pull out your Emergency Essentials catalog or go online to beprepared.com. Search for the ingredients to make each of these meals out of our large selection of freeze-dried and dehydrated foods. Write these meals down on a calendar to keep track of them. You can use our Food Storage Menu Planner to keep track of your shopping list, monthly meal calendars, and food storage inventory. Just click on the picture below and start planning!

     Food Storage Menu Planner

     

     

    Create a short-term storage supply: Since not all food items can be preserved long-term, you may have to think about ways to change the recipes so that you can use food storage products. You may also want to think about creating a [short-term food storage] supply that includes items like vegetable oil, brown rice, and peanut butter. You can rotate these items regularly so that you can have them on hand if you’re in an emergency situation.

    Purchase your supplies:  You can gradually add supplies to your food storage, or you can get it all at once (year supply combos work well for this option). It’s up to you—do what works best for your situation. But keep in mind that it’s recommended to start with the basics—grains, legumes, dry milk, sugar, salt, oil, and garden seeds so that you can have the basic supplies to make a number of meals.

    Start Cooking:  Once you’ve purchased your supplies, start cooking with them to test out meals. This will not only show you what needs to be adjusted to make the recipes work, but it will also help your family to become familiar with eating freeze-dried and dehydrated foods before an emergency hits.

     

     

    Baby Step 2: Try a New Food Storage Recipe or Technique

    To go along with our food storage theme, consider learning how to cook with a food storage item that you are unfamiliar with or uncomfortable cooking. One item that may seem difficult to cook is wheat. Here are some resources to get you started if you want to learn how to cook with wheat:

    Wheat Cookin’ Made Easy (DVD)

    The Amazing Wheat Book

    The Working with Wheat Combo

    The Easiest Way to Use Wheat

    Also, Food Storage in a Nutshell provides a very good list of the best ways to cook with freeze-dried and dehydrated foods so that you can preserve the nutrients in your food storage meals.

    Stay tuned for our Baby Steps: Halloween Safety and DIY Costumes coming up later this week!

    -Angela

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: menu, baby steps, food storage

  • Baby Steps--CERT and Neighborhood Plans

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    Casual Group of People in a Row - Isolated

    Okay, ready to have your mind blown? Today’s post is a baby-steps-within-baby-steps post. Since we've been talking about CERT today, we thought it would be useful to brush up on the basics by revisiting a previous ‘baby steps’ series on the topic of preparedness networks. The articles and resources linked here are a great place to get started as you think about neighborhood networks and emergency plans.

    Step 1: Mix ‘n mingle
    The very first, most basic, and most crucial step to building a useful neighborhood network is to get to know your neighbors. Build trust, look for common interests, let them know you’re willing to help. Ultimately, you’re looking for complementary skills and resources, but none of that matters if you never speak with them.

     

    Step 2: Get to work
    Once you’ve built a social network, you’ll have likely identified those who would be open to participating in an emergency response network. The next step is to get it all down on paper: names and contact info; skills and equipment; lines of communication. Information overload? Organize it all in this ultra-handy neighborhood emergency plan packet. You can also take advantage of tools like Facebook groups to communicate both before and after a disaster.

     

    Step 3: Build your team
    With a basic plan in place, you can kick it up a notch and focus on bolstering specific elements of your neighborhood network. The ‘baby steps’ post here links to an article by a former Navy SEAL about elements of survival you may not have considered (fitness, finances, and the psychology of endurance, for example) and the importance of a strong team.

    Your own personal preparedness is vital, but enlisting the help of a supportive group of neighbors can create a pool of physical and emotional resources that might spell the difference between just surviving and thriving.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: CERT, Neighborhood Emergency Plan, baby steps, skills

  • Baby Steps: Add a Map to Your Prepping Supplies

    iStock_000016393748XSmall_family camping

    When you think of your prepping supplies, what are the most important items for your survival? To me, food, water, and a fully stocked emergency kit are pretty high up on the list. However, a printed map displaying alternate routes to avoid traffic and congested areas could be equally important to your survival as a #10 can of food!

    This week we came across a great article from Commonsense Homesteading that gives advice on how you can use a map in your prepping gear to keep you out of harm’s way during an emergency. This article gives tips for how to use your map effectively if you live in the country, city, or the suburbs.

    Here are some helpful tips for using a map in an emergency:

    #1. Print out a map of your area, laminate it, and put it with your prepping supplies (you might not be able to rely on Google Earth, Mapquest, and GPS on your phone or in your car during an emergency).

    #2. “Know your exit routes, map them.  Have multiple exit routes, don’t plan on just one.” Depending on the emergency, some common routes may be unusable or totally congested. You’ll want to know what your alternatives are.

    #3. Get to know your neighbors. If you live in the country, map out where their homes are within a five mile radius on your map, how long it will take you to get there, and what resources you could potentially share, trade, or sell to them in the event of an emergency. If you live in the city, get to know your closest neighbors and get their contact info. Have the contact info for local authorities.

    *As our recent "Hurricane Sandy: Neighbors to the Rescue" post suggests, those who get to know their neighbors and work together with their communities are more likely to get through an emergency situation than those who do not.

    #4. Know the Terrain and high-risk areas including rivers and other waterways or flood zones, bridges (which could be vulnerable to collapse), or highways prone to fog or ice.

    #5. Map out routes to your family or friends for shelter. Also map routes to storage units or other places you might have supplies waiting.

     

    For more information, tips, and tricks for getting the most out of printed maps during an emergency, check out the article at commonsensehome.com 

    For more information on evacuating during an emergency, learn how to build a car emergency kit and practice your family evacuation plan

    --Angela

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: emergency binder, Survival, Emergency plan, emergency kit, baby steps

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