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Basic preparation outline


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Here's a rough draft of what we might include in the basic prep section of the manual. These are just an outline, not full thoughts. What am I missing or what should we remove? I need input and I could use some volunteers to work on these. Perhaps moderators could search their sites and come up with the needed info if need be.




Basic preparation:



Reasons why a person might need to be prepared.

Attitude towards preparation is important

Preparation does not have to be expensive

Everyone has to start somewhere this manual is a great place to do it!!!

”YOU CAN DO THIS” attitude. (I like this one particularly, thanks Cat)


Start here:

Bug out Bag or 72 hour kit

Backpack or vehicle kit

Personal Fanny pack

7 day plan

3 week plan

3 month plan

1 year plan

Suggestions for preparing on a shoestring budget

(This would be a good place for the $20 a week plan)





Why necessary (city water eventually not available, No pump for wells, generators?)

How much (x number of gallons for drinking, cooking etc)

How to store (containers, safety, etc)

Where to store (innovative storage maybe)

Finding in an emergency (hot water heater, tanks, rain water, solar still maybe?)

Sanitizing (bleach, purification tablets, filters)



How much (needs per person)

What kind (storage foods, MRE’s, etc vs. regular foods; dried vs. canned)

Healthy eating (nutritional needs in stressful situations)

Rotating stock

Cooking stored foods (recipes or cook book)

Where to store

Finding food in an emergency?

Cooking in an emergency (Perhaps this should be a separate section with more how-to’s)


Emergency Refrigeration-

Root cellars

Clay pot coolers, swamp coolers

Spring houses or running water

And etc.




T-paper and alternatives

Bathing or lack of

Portable potties, out houses, composting toilets, and make shift toilets.





Shelter in place

Alternative shelter (evacuation)

Emergency shelters (tents, make shifts etc)


Heat and cooling-


Wood heat

Keeping warm without heat


Cooling (shaded windows, cooling house at night and closed in day, caves? Paper fans????)


Personal products-

Soap, tooth paste, shampoo etc


Important papers


First aid-


Meds (what kind, expiration dates)

Herbs (uses and storing)

Instructions (good book)

Knowledge ahead (classes)



Matches and lighters


Lanterns and candles

Emergency lights (rush lights, button lamps, cooking oil, etc)

Flash lights (various kinds)







Chain saw




Self defense

Property defense



Cell phone (keeping a charge, versus land lines, towers work?)

Land line (will it still work, keep non electric phone)

Communication plan ahead of time with family

Radios (battery, hand cranked, electric)



Long term self sufficiency-

Heirloom seeds and plants

Gardening (ground, container, green house or cold frame, city gardening)

Hunting (country and city)

Wild crafting


Basic How to information



General Checklist


Personal Checklist




Okay, your turn!


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Is this something like you might be looking for?

just a beginning......


We have all encountered those family setbacks or emergencies and said to your self, “if this happens again I will be more prepared”.

Are you?

There are all kinds of emergencies, everything from that 3 hour power outage with guests coming, to the 3 weeks that the ice storm rendered us powerless and unable to travel to get those items necessary for just getting by.

Then there are the long term emergencies like getting laid off and not enough cash to go around.

This book is about preparing for those emergencies.

We hope to convince you that it is fairly easy and painless to get ready for those contingencies.

I watched in amazement as people filed into the dome in New Orleans’, with only a bottle of soda and when asked where their 3 day supply of food was that they were asked to bring with them, and got answers like, “they” will give me what I need. Had they remained at home they would have needed to have food for those 3 days, but in an emergency someone else was supposed to provide it. This mind set has cost many a family more than it should have.

The way to prepare is to look at what is necessary and find a way to provide it.


Edited out the reference to water.......

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Lois, this is great. It would make a great opening for the book itself. I'm hoping that the other sections, like the water and food and etc will be very detailed so that they can take as little or as much info as they need from it but that first part you wrote will be excellent as a come on for them to even want to read the book. Great work and thanks for your prompt reply.


It's going to take a while to get the whole book together but there's no way Schoolmarm and I can do it without all your help. Do I have some volunteers to take on some of these other areas? Please!


Big hugs to all of you.


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First and most important Water

We can expect to live about 3 days without it.

It is essential that every person have enough and it must be safe to drink. Calculate 2 gallons of water per person per day as a rule of thumb. Needs differ according to age, physical condition, activity and environment. This includes water for cooking, bathing or pets. You will need 1 gallon of water per medium-size dog, for example, 1 pint per day for each cat.

If you have clean and sterilized food-grade containers are used, untreated water from your tap should keep 6 months, but must be changed on a 6 month schedule. Safe germ-free water, which means successful treatment by one of the accepted methods listed, will keep several years depending on heat, light, degradation of the container, etc.


Store your water away from paint and petroleum-based products, acids, fertilizer or household cleaners. While able to hold water, these lower grade containers are permeable to certain gases.

We also have an additional gallons of water in your hot water tank.


You'll need to locate an alternate source for longer term use. In times of disaster, you must assume any water not stored or purchased is contaminated. It could look like a crystal clear stream and still be polluted. If the water you locate is dirty, first strain the debris through a paper towel, coffee filter or a clean cloth. Then treat using one of these methods.


BOILING - bring water to a rolling boil and boil for a minimum of 10 minutes. Add one minute of boiling to the initial 10 minutes. for every 1000 feet above sea level. Cover the pan, to shorten the time to reach a boil. This is recognized as the safest treatment.


LIQUID CHLORINE BLEACH - any brand - must be 5.25% or 6% sodium hypochlorite (like Ultra Clorox) and contain no soap, phosphates or fragrance. Measuring by drops is more accurate and the preferred method.

To 1 GALLON Add 16 drops (1/4 tsp) chlorine

To 5 Gallon Add 80 drops (1 tsp


American Red Cross recommends

1. Filter water using a piece of cloth or a coffee filter to remove solid particles.


2. Bring water to a rolling boil for about one full minute.


3. Let it cool at least 30 minutes. Water must be cool or the chlorine treatment described above will be useless.


4. Add the required amount of liquid chlorine bleach in the table above.


5. Let stand 30 minutes.


6. If it smells of chlorine, use it. If it does not have a chlorine scent, add 16 more drops of chlorine bleach per gallon of water (or 8 drops ½ gal. bottle of water), let stand 30 minutes, and smell it again. If it smells of chlorine, use it. If it does not, discard it and find another source of water.



For storing water in 55 gallon drums, use or a scant 1/4 cup chlorine. Remember, these doses are for treated city water which has (or should) have a chlorine demand of zero. Field water will need more. GET A TEST KIT for free chlorine measurement so guess work is gone. Target treatment at 3-5ppm (parts per million) free chlorine for city water and 5ppm for field water.


If bleach is more than one year old, it loses approximately 50% strength. In this case, the amount of bleach should be doubled. After treating with chlorine, mix well and allow water to stand 30 minutes before using. Use this eyedropper for no other purpose. If the bleach is not dated, at time of purchase, note the date on the bottle with a permanent marker.


Calcium hypochlorite or Dry Chlorine has the added benefit of extended shelf life. Providing it is kept dry, cool and in an airtight container, it may be stored up to 10 years with minimal degradation. If you want to keep chlorine in large quantities, this is the one to store as it is available at swimming pool supply stores and many hardware and grocery stores carrying pool items and will require less storage space than in the liquid form.


NOTE: Calcium hypochlorite is the solid form with 65% strength and sodium hypochlorite is the liquid form with strengths about 12.5%. Household bleach is sodium hypochlorite (NaHOCl) of about 5% strength. Most household bleach labels will read 5.25% or 6%


IODINE - follow instructions on the container, or use 12 drops per gallon of water. If the water is in question, double the amount of iodine. Mix well and allow the water to stand 30 minutes before using.


PURIFICATION TABLETS - these tablets are either iodine or chlorine based. One or two tablets will purify one quart of water depending on how contaminated the water and the length of time you allow the treated water to stand. Follow instructions on the package. (Note: not every brand of purification tablet kills Giardia.)



HYDROGEN PEROXIDE* - Peroxide is an acceptable disinfectant for water, as it oxidizes as does chlorine. But remember Peroxide degrades even more rapidly than chlorine and potency may be a problem if it is to be stored.

Keep in mind it is difficult to test your water for safety using this method, which is why it is the least favored way to disinfect water.



There are a great many of water purifying units that do not use electricity on the market. Everything from individual to family size, find the one or ones that fit both your budget and your need.

A few places to look are

Walton Feed

Sportsman’s guide

Cheaper than Dirt




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