SURVIVAL is NOW!
Learn to survive better every Day,
Prepare for Emergencies,
Be ready in case of Disaster.
Don't be put off by the title. Survival doesn't necessarily mean scrounging for nuts and berries in the wilderness. Wherever you live and whatever your life style, you would like to be able to know that you can get along Tomorrow, just as well as Today; even if catastrophe strikes your family or your community.
War, famine, disease and natural disaster have plagued mankind in some form or another from the beginning of time. We cannot prevent these things. But we can try to prepare in the best way we can to minimize the consequences we may suffer. We call that “preparedness“. I am going to start with everyday life and will cover things that are NEVER mentioned by other survival pages. However, these things are important to you and your loved ones. Beginning with simple daily life, there are a lot of things most of us already know we should do, like exercise and nutrition, to promote better health and contribute to the quality of our lives. We never find the time or the inclination. Yet, we can do it if we take one step at a time.
POSITIVE (ID) identification (you do not want to think about this)
However,it is very important in today's uncertain World.
If You, or a Family member or loved one, is in a serious accident, is killed injured or missing, having this information can save families weeks or months or worry. It can help unidentified patients find relatives necessary to consent to treatment. It can aid identifying victims of crimes or disaster. Think about the suffering of the Families of 9/11 victims or families separated by a Hurricane.
Sometimes children are lost or kidnapped. People have suffered needless agony not knowing what has become of their missing child. Years later it is more difficult to establish the identity of an older child as the one lost. It will take some trouble to prepare your information. But if it is ever needed; you will be grateful to have it on hand. You will want to make an Positive ID packet for every member of your Family.
What is in an ID packet?
They make ID packets for children. For a child under two, foot prints are also used. You can also make your own footprints or use a Fingerprint Card: These are available at police departments.
For Adults: use a full length standing picture, in regular clothing. Face close-up front and side views. Show (uncovered) pictures of scars, tattoos, and birthmarks. For children; a full length standing photo and face photos, in play clothes as well as dress clothes, show pictures of large scars. For children, up date the photo and the file yearly, with a new picture. Birthdays are a good time to do this.
For adults: Put all the regular vital statistics: Height, weight, hair & eye color, false teeth, glasses, braces, prostheses. Make a note of the size, shape and location of scars; birthmarks, tattoos and piercing. Record broken bones, surgery and dental records. Make a note of any noticeable habits, like walking with a limp. Attach a copy of any ID cards or licenses. If you have a dentist, if possible get a photo copy of the dental x-ray.
For adults note any weight changes. Hair color and style changes. For children always have Current pictures, height and weight. Every few years you should update the fingerprints of the child.
It is good if you can get dental x-ray copies for yourself or your child's checkups. You should also have a plastic baggie with hair samples and finger nail clipping. You should have a master ID file for each member of the Family. Make two copies with Information, pictures and DNA samples, to give to other relatives or friends who live outside your home, or to be secured at another location. Have more than one set of samples. For instance, if your child were kidnapped: you would have given a set to authorities. You need save additional information for yourself, in case it may be needed later. You cannot count on agencies to save your information and have it available for years.
Exchange information packets with your family members! If there were a fire in your home for instance, the information needed might not be available. If your family were in a bus or airplane accident, family members might be coming in from different locations to help. It would be more helpful, for them to have some of your information on hand.
Every Adult should not only have a Will, but also a "Living Will." This gives instructions to health care providors, regarding their care wishes, if the event of incapacity. That is when it is beyond a persons ability to either make medical decisions for themselves, or to express their wishes to others. Everyone should discuss their feelings about using extraordinary treatment, with the persons nominated to make those decisions for them. Nominees should have a copy of the "Living Will", along with your positive ID information and theirs. The executor of a regular Will should also have this information, if they are different people.
Do not use a "Will Kit. The jurisdiction where someone is living when their time comes, may have different witness requirements for a valid will. There are many reasons a will must be made for you. Also Remember; that it is not enough just to have a Will; when someone dies, the Will must be filed, and presented in the Probate Court. Notices must be published. There are specified time periods for these things to be done. Most people benefit from an Estate Planning appointment with a lawyer. Don't just say you want a Will! You need to express your wishes and the attorney can advise you how these might best be accomplished. You may even be able to avoid "Probate"; simply by making some changes within your deeds; titles, and bank or Investment accounts while you are still functioning well. This is particularly true for those with smaller estates, who may think they do not own enough to bother with a lawyer. The appointment may cost very little and may save you a lot in both money and worry.
SURVIVAL is NOW!
Learn to survive better every Day,
Prepare for Emergencies,
Be ready in case of Disaster.
(Preparedness REALLY makes it possible)
This does not necessarily mean being on a strict "budget"; making your own clothes and giving up smoking, drinking, restaurants, pets, hobbies, and entertainment, even if we should give those things up for other reasons. We all have our Vices and it is far easier said than done.
What it really means is Planning!
Financial budgeting it only means: First, paying attention to where the money went? Sometimes realizing that, practically takes care of the problem. This can however, cause dissention in relationships. One person feels that the other is frittering away money needlessly, on things they don't consider important. Since most people do not actually have enough money to go around. They have to cover every bill or expense that must be paid, every regular expense, other things a family needs or wants. Then, decisions have to be made: what, and when, does somebody get left out, or what will we need to sacrifice.
List your monthly payments or service bills. Do not forget yearly, semi annual or quarterly payments. If you have variable income, when you have cash, you need to set aside monthly amounts towards these bills and consider them part of the monthly obligations. That is much better than that panic when the huge bill shows up. If you are in “catch up” mode, you might need to give each person a “weekly allowance” for nonessential spending, as a temporary measure.
Planning your Shopping:
This is the most important thing you can do in managing the household.
Nonfood products: Cleaning supplies; personal care Items and paper products are a big expense, but are things we should always have on hand. Paper products are nonperishable and can be purchased in bulk or on sale advantageously. For long term storage they need to be securely double packaged, so they will not become winter nests for rodents. There are many natural replacements for commercial cleaning products and personal care items. They are healthier and also cheaper because you can make many of these yourself.
Tips:For limiting paper ppoducts and savings resources.
Food Items, likewise, can be divided into Groups according to their capability for storage. Canned goods: Soups, meats, fruits and vegetables and coffee. These include Jars and bottles: Honey, syrup, peanut butter, pickles, other condiments, carbonated bottled beverages and sauces and spices. Packaged goods: Whole and processed grains, rice, dry beans, flour and meal, baking essentials, pasta, teas and some dried fruits, vegetables or condiments. Frozen foods: have unlimited selections, and last are Fresh foods: Meats, eggs, dairy and garden Produce.
Depending on your income schedule, you should be able to buy a good amount of canned and packaged foods monthly. Jars and bottles from a one months trip could last six months. That will help your canned and packaged foods start to accumulate. You will shoot to have a one month reserve, then add to that until you are well provisioned. If you begin to make things from scratch and eliminate mixes and pre-packaged meals you will be saving money using your baking items regularly. You should always try to have a months supply of anything on hand. Even if you don’t make many meals with canned meats, you might want to use some for lunches or camping. You will be wanting to stock up on these for emergencies. But, they need to be rotated, so you want to use them on some occasions. Your family members should be getting accustomed to eating some of these, as well as meatless meals featuring rice or beans. This way it will not be such a horrendous experience to be in survival mode for a substantial emergency.
Tips: See Stocking up & Storing Food.
This co-ordinates with planning your shopping. When I was a young married woman I bought a lot of my canned and packaged goods monthly at a railway salvage store. We had a few good meat markets where I would shop weekly.
I eat meat! Depending on what was "on sale" I would come home and plan the meals for a week or more. Then I could determine what additional items were needed to make the meals I wanted. It was never a lot, because we were pretty well stocked up on the canned and packaged items. I could get all the fresh foods and vegetables to be used for the week. This avoided those extra trips for "forgotten things" and saves you a lot of time and money.
When there are not many at Home, you can still save buying larger meat cuts or packages. The meat department will be glad to cut your roast into several portions; and even slice some for you. I always bought a large Holiday ham and had it cut into 2 Roasts; with slices from the center for Ham steaks. I might use the ends from the baked hams to boil for soup or beans. You can take home larger meat packages and divide them yourself, for the freezer. That way you can trim steaks to make additional meals, creating stews, soups, or a stir-fry. Compared to Americans, Asians and Europeans make large, probably much healthier, family meals with much less meat per person. Experiment a little, try making a nice family meal with a small piece of steak; or only a couple of pork chops. Not only will you be giving them a healthy meal, it is very satisfying to know you can feed your family well on less, if the need ever arises. Another aspect of meal planning is making your own plate lunches or frozen dinners. In a short period of time you can make great treats, from fruit popsicles to crunchy snacks and pudding cups.
Copyright WrieOn 2005 All Rights Reserved
This page was last updated: 12/27/2012
Learn about the Healthiest Food:
This is something that pretty much ALL of us need to do. A first step might be to try getting rid of stuff. There is “all that stuff,” things we don't need, don’t use, or don't even want any longer. It is difficult to be well prepared for anything; if we can't find the things we need. We also need to collect a few emergency supply essentials for certain emergencies. Check the “Emergency Kit” lists before you toss out everything in the junk drawer. You might find a lot of "good stuff" among the throwaways. Having "a place for everything; and everything in it's place" is the ideal. Don’t worry about the ideal, most of us are not that organized. Nevertheless in an emergency you don't want to be looking for a bag-trying to hastily pack, and find you can't even locate your first aid kit.
DOCUMENTS & IMPORTANT PAPERS:
(Including family Pictures)
First, get the documents that you should have! Do not put this off. You should have Identification for every member of your household. It is good to get Birth Certificates and Social Security cards for the whole family including your adult children and parents not in the household. Make copies so each person can have a folder of their own important documents. Have copies of ALL the important documents in a home file with the originals in a safe deposit box or other secure repository out of the home. This includes Divorce papers, guardianship, adoptions, custody orders, anything that conveys a right or an obligation.
For deeds, passports, wills, original insurance policies, car titles and so forth, these should have secure storage like a safe deposit box. In addition you should have copies of your important (master) keys. Always have extra copies of your keys in your home file.
Important NOTE about Medical Records, See:
Keep medical records files, shot records for children, military records, school transcripts and work records. It is a good idea to keep a list of all your former jobs and addresses too. Taxes: Keep a file folder for each years income. Use a File that holds five years. After each tax year discard the oldest. These should also be stored in a safe place. Make certain you have one file box for the master copies of all your important documents and another box for the family pictures, except the ones that are displayed. You may want to prepare an empty box for those too, so you can store them in a hurry, if you do not have copies already.
If you have to leave your home in an emergency; you may not be able to take many items. So you want to be able to keep them safe and dry. Basements are good if you are not in a flood prone area. If you are, attics are better. Have a designated storage place, where you can put waterproof containers to protect them and your important papers and valuables. You need one that will hold your File, a box of family pictures, and extra empty ones for the displayed pictures, or to protect a special heirloom. You might also want one for your jewelry, or to put these things with your documents.
Regular plastic storage boxes not watertight. Even if you are not in a flood area you will want water tight containers. In cases of fire, there is as much damage from water as from the actual fire. If there is a fire, the basement would be a safe repository, in that it is well below the flash point of a fire. However, your things could still suffer a great deal of water damage. Plastic Coolers are the best and cheapest alternative for keeping papers and small items secure. “If it keeps water in, it will keep water out.” Have the containers ready so you can put items in them in a hurry, if they are not already stored. Have Duct tape or heavy duty strapping tape to secure the containers, even though they may have a latch. Label them, but don't write "good jewelry" or something that might prompt stealing. Use code so the items will be easier to find later.
Always have several forms of Identification with you when you leave your home, and Identification in your vehicle. For Women; a small pocket or ID you can wear, and keep with you is better than one lost in a large purse.
Make an individual file for each recurring expense or credit card. Record your payments & keep receipts. If you have a lot of monthly expenditures, you may want to keep a wire notebook, starting a new page for each month. Enter the amount owed and due and when and the amounts paid. Some people have an expanding file and keep each individual recurring payment, like utility bills in one spot. It helps for taxes. A notebook is especially good for people with health problems. That way it will be easier for a relative or friend to take care of the necessary bills and see that they are paid on time, when someone is ill or incapacitated.