How to Budget for a Disaster

As a newlywed college student, financial stress is no secret to me. At first, I couldn’t believe how much money was spent on a weekly and then monthly basis on things that I really didn’t want to spend money on! All of the expenses are quite important and sometimes necessary, but this can make preparing food storage and emergency gear rather difficult. With all the money I was already spending, getting started with preparedness was a daunting task. But then I realized something I hadn’t been doing; budgeting! Budgeting is an amazing skill that can help you to make the best of your paychecks. And it is one of those skills that will make your life better today and tomorrow! Can it help you with your preparing though? I can  …

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Is Your 72-Hour Kit Obsolete?

I feel like if you ask anyone about emergency preparedness they will know one of two things: Food storage and/or 72-hour kits. And, if you ask anyone who is prepared, and they will have both! My wife and I started building our 72-hour kits earlier this year soon after we were married, and we were getting to the point where I was very happy with the bags we had, but then I went to CERT training last night they dropped a bombshell on me … Turns out, FEMA has decided that a 72-hour kit is now obsolete for most disasters and are now recommending a 96-hour kit. During a large-scale emergency the government and emergency personnel will be focused on a lot of things, but it is up to you  …

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Disaster Myths: You Don’t Know What’s Going to Happen

Let’s pretend that a disaster just happened; an earthquake near your home that has leveled buildings and killed hundreds. Thankfully, you’ve survived, but what’s going to happen now? You probably have a good idea of what life will be like after a disaster. But you might be wrong! A lot of research has been done about the human condition during and after a disaster and the findings might surprise you. Panic One of the biggest myths about a disaster is that there will be mass panic. We’ve seen countless movies and TV shows where people forget the needs of others and adopt an “every man for himself” mentality. This self-interested survival behavior is typically referred to as panic. While we think that panic is a very common occurrence in a  …

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What to Keep in Your First-Aid Kit

In an emergency, a properly stocked first-aid kit can often mean the difference between stopping a situation from escalating before it gets out of control and winding up with a life-threatening incident on your hands. Whether you are using your first-aid kit as a homesteader, taking it with you for backwoods camping or other activities that could result in a survival situation, or simply packing one to have on hand in the event of an extreme weather event or accident, there are certain items that it should absolutely have. The Basics A first-aid kit should have plenty of items necessary for injuries that are not life threatening or serious enough to require additional care. These include the kinds of items you would need for dealing with minor cuts, scrapes, and  …

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What Is The Best Walkie Talkie For You?

When an extreme weather event or civil unrest emergency that overwhelms communication infrastructure – or else knocks it out entirely – it’s best to have a backup plan in place. Being able to communicate with loved ones in an emergency situation is crucial to finding them and getting everyone to safety quickly. In urban areas, cell phone towers can quickly be overloaded, preventing the use of cell phones as an effective means of communication. And in remote areas, cellular service can often be patchy and unpredictable even under normal circumstances. For these reasons, you’ll want to make sure you have walkie-talkies on hand in case of an emergency. Here are the most important features you should look for when shopping for the best walkie-talkies in an emergency: Range is an  …

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Building Your Own Faraday Cage

A Faraday cage is an enclosed space with an outer layer that conducts electricity. The physical shape of the Faraday cage does not matter: it can be spherical, cylindrical, or a box. Either the cage itself can be made of a conductive material, or the cage can be built of a non-conductive material such as wood and then covered in a conductive material. The conductive material can be as simple as several layers of aluminum foil, which makes constructing your own Faraday cage a fairly simple and inexpensive affair. What are Faraday Cages Used For? Faraday cages are designed to guard whatever is inside of it from excessive levels of static and non-static electricity. This can be accomplished either by reflecting incoming electric fields, absorbing incoming fields, or creating opposing  …

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How to Survive in the Forest

Forests are beautiful, serene landscapes, which is one of the reason millions of Americans choose them as vacation spots every year. They offer great terrain for camping and enjoying all of the beauty natural wilderness has to offer. But forests can also be dangerous places, and if you are not prepared for how to survive in a forest for extended periods of time, you could find yourself quickly in serious trouble if you become lost or separated from your group. The key to forest survival is knowing how to read signs in the terrain to glean information about your surroundings. It’s imperative to know what steps to take in order to maximize your resources and survive until you can reorient yourself or until help arrives. Stop & Think First, when  …

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Fishing Without Fishing Gear

When you are in a survival situation, knowing how to fish can get you a great source of high-energy protein quickly and easily. But let’s say you are in a survival situation and don’t have any fishing gear such as tackle, line, or hooks. What then? Knowing a few basic techniques for catching fish without gear can be the difference between going hungry and staying alive. Improvised Gear It’s important in a survival situation to be resourceful enough to find and improvise traditional fishing gear from anything on your person or what you can scavenge. Hooks. Hooks can be improvised from a wide range of different items, including nails, safety pins, soda can tabs, and a range of organic materials, such as bones, claws, antlers, shells, and even whittled sticks.  …

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How to Build an Emergency Shelter

When you need to find a site to build an emergency shelter, you need to consider a few key elements to ensure your survival. Whenever possible, use existing terrain for shelter – look for hills you can camp between, or caves and overhangs for protection from the elements. Energy. First, you have to think about how much time and effort you can spare to build the shelter. You also have to make sure the shelter will give you enough protection from the elements – is it raining, snowing, or windy? Tools. Next, do you have the tools needed to build that kind of shelter, and if not, can you scavenge or make improvised tools? Supplies. Finally, you have to consider whether you have the materials necessary to build the shelter.  …

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Build Your Own Crossbow in 10 Steps

The crossbow is an outstanding field piece for hunting small game. It has all of the benefits of a bow-and-arrow such as reusable ammunition and silent firepower, as well as the comfort of a rifle stock and trigger pull. You can build your own effective, simple crossbow for less than $100 from basic parts. This step-by-step guide shows you how. Materials: • 2x pine two by fours, about 3 feet long • 1x 1” PVC pipe, about 3 feet long • Nylon string • 2 x miniature steel pulleys • 6 x heavy-duty tie clips • 2 x 2” wood screws • 2 x 4” wood screws • 1 x 2” wood nail • PVC or wood glue • 1/4” wood dowels Building the Crossbow Making the stock 1. Take  …

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