Welcome to the Keep and Bear, LLC 30 Day Preparedness Challenge! We are on Day 2. If you are just joining us, please go to the intro post to learn more.
The purpose of this ‘challenge’ is to provide a paced and measured plan to fulfill some basic family preparedness needs. These needs are real-world, and applicable to the average family.
The below headings are the main survival priorities.
Positive Mental Attitude
In the Day 1 post, the task was to pick a book relating to positive mental attitude. To expand on that, it can be a book on success or mental improvement, such as the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (a great resource), but it can also be about developing mental tenacity. If you haven’t already, google “books on positive mental attitude” or “books on success” and pick one you are interested in.
TASK: Read at least one chapter in your PMA book.
In the Day 1 post, the task was to determine if your inventories included at least a decent dust/particulate mask for you and your family. There was also a reference to a decent explanation on different masks and qualities.
TASK: Determine the threat conditions you face near your home and work. Determine the most appropriate masks for your needs. Determine their durations. Put getting them on your To-Do list.
Remember, we are most concerned with Shelter At Home. But in some conditions, we will need to fortify and repair the home so it can continue to shelter us. Most people have a basic tool kit, but if you do not, it is now time to assess what you do have and fill in what you don’t.
Here is an excellent home set of tools to start out:
In addition to this set, you should have:
- Rubber Mallet
- Pipe Wrench
- Power drill (cordless)
- Circular Saw
- Tape Measure
- Pliers set with side cutters
- Utility Knife
- Stud finder
- Wood glue
- Super glue
- Duct tape
- Oil filter wrench
- Saw horses
TASK: Assess your tool needs, including any specialty or odd tools needed for your situation. Compare this list to your tool inventory. Identify all gaps and add getting the needed tools to your To-Do list.
An example of an odd tool… I have a utility tractor. It occasionally requires the engine bolts tightened to the frame. It takes a 19mm wrench to do so. Once identified, this required tool was obtained. I have several tractor implements that have even larger bolts. Once identified, a 3/4″ drive bar wrench was needed with sockets of the appropriate size. These are in addition to the kit above.
We are going for 1 gallon of potable water per person per day for up to 7 days. That means with a family of 4, we need 28 gallons. This is a bare-bones amount suitable for average exertion in temperate weather. If you’re dealing with high exertion and hot weather, double the requirement.
On Day 1, we started saving/sourcing 2-liter bottles. These are excellent containers because they are relatively sturdy, tolerate stacking, and are a very effective quantity vs weight physical characteristic. Ideally the 2-liter bottles were used for water originally. If they were used for soda, ensure they are cleaned very thoroughly as sugar can allow growth of things we’d rather not drink. Don’t forget cleaning the cap and the cap threading.
TASK: Find a place you will be storing your water supplies. It should be dark, and ideally cool.
TASK: Clean and fill at least two 2-liter bottles.
As a heads up, we will be filling two 2-liter bottles each weeknight for the entire challenge. If you would rather knock this out in one fell swoop, go for it!
NOTE: To disinfect water, 4 drops per 2-liter bottle is the correct ratio, however, adding bleach to the water now (to store it) does no real good. Bleach will remain effective as a disinfectant for about 24 hours in water. If you are uncertain about your storage water purity, add bleach to the water before you use it, not as you store it.
Additionally, if you’d rather buy purpose-made storage containers for water, go for it. It’s a bit out of budget for this exercise, but there can be distinct advantages.
Assess your family’s eating habits. What has short shelf lives (like bread)? What has longer shelf lives (like boxed mac n cheese)? What has nearly indefinite shelf lives (like dehydrated foods, canned goods, or dry goods)?
TASK: Start putting together a list of typical meals and their ingredients that consist of short, long, and indefinite shelf life items. Identify completed recipes that use at least long-life ingredients.
A flashlight in every room, and on you. That’s the goal. There should literally be a small flashlight in easy reach in every location you spend time. Your dad chair? Flashlight in the coffee table next to it. Computer desk? Flashlight on it. Bed? Flashlight in the night stand. Car? Flashlight in the center console or the door tray.
In addition to these flashlights, carry one. Tactical flashlights are cool-guy gear. Get one.
TASK: Collect all the flashlights you have in your junk drawers and put them in useful places that are near the areas you actually dwell. Find a smallish one and keep it on you.
Lastly, have one “high capacity” flashlight, or better, two. These are the lights that will have reasonable brightness for a good long while.
TASK: Have at least one long duration flashlight. Your small lights have one job: Get you to your big light.
TASK: Make a recurring schedule in your To-Do list to replace flashlight batteries at least 1/year.
Yes, we have to learn stuff. Your training should include:
- Basic home repairs
- Basic automotive repair
- Basic equipment repairs (chainsaws, tractors, tools, etc).
- First Aid
- Self defense
- Adverse condition and tactical driving
- Home skills (sewing, food preparation/preservation)
TASK: Assess your skillset in the above areas and identify if any are missing. Based on your skills, research what you most need extra training in. Enroll in at least one of those training subjects.
SHAMELESS PLUG: Emergency preparedness planning is a very important skill set. Keep and Bear, LLC offers training in developing plans. Do it!